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With iron light is dyed,

The Anarchs of the North lead forth their legions
Like Chaos o'er creation, uncreating;

An hundred tribes nourished on strange religions
And lawless slaveries,-down the aerial regions
Of the white Alps, desolating,

Famished wolves that bide no waiting,

Blotting the glowing footsteps of old glory,
Trampling our columned cities into dust,
Their dull and savage lust

On Beauty's corse to sickness satiating

They come! The fields they tread look black and hoary With fire--from their red feet the streams run gory!


Great Spirit, deepest Love!
Which rulest and dost move

All things which live and are within the Italian shore;
Who spreadest heaven around it;

Whose woods, rocks, waves, surround it;

Who sittest in thy star, o'er Ocean's western floor,
Spirit of beauty! at whose soft command

The sunbeams and the showers distil its foison
From the Earth's bosom chill;

O bid those beams be each a blinding brand
Of lightning bid those showers be dews of poison!
Bid the Earth's plenty kill!

Bid thy bright Heaven above,

Whilst light and darkness bound it,

Be their tomb who planned

To make it ours and thine !

Or, with thine harmonizing ardours fill
And raise thy sons, as o'er the proue horizon

Thy lamp feeds every twilight wave with fire-
Be man's high hope and unextinct desire,
The instrument to work thy will divine!

Then clouds from sunbeams, antelopes from leopards,
And frowns and fears from Thee,
Would not more swiftly flee

Than Celtic wolves from the Ausonian shepherds.—
Whatever, Spirit, from thy starry shrine
Thou yieldest or withholdest, Oh let be
This city of thy worship ever free!

September, 1820.


A PALE dream came to a Lady fair,
And said, a boon, a boon, I pray !
I know the secrets of the air,

And things are lost in the glare of day,
Which I can make the sleeping see,
If they will put their trust in me.

And thou shalt know of things unknown,
If thou wilt let me rest between

The veiny lids, whose fringe is thrown
Over thine eyes so dark and sheen:
And half in hope, and half in fright,
The Lady closed her eyes so bright.

At first all deadly shapes were driven
Tumultuously across her sleep,

And o'er the vast cope of bending heaven
All ghastly visaged clouds did sweep;
And the Lady ever looked to spy
If the gold sun shone forth on high.

And as towards the east she turned,
She saw aloft in the morning air,
Which now with hues of sunrise burned
A great black Anchor rising there;
And wherever the Lady turned her eyes
It hung before her in the skies.

The sky was blue as the summer sea,
The depths were cloudless over head,
The air was calm as it could be,

There was no sight nor sound of dread,
But that black Anchor floating still
Over the piny eastern hill.

The Lady grew sick with a weight of fear,
To see that Anchor ever hanging,
And veiled her eyes; she then did hear

The sound as of a dim low clanging,
And looked abroad if she might know
Was it aught else, or but the flow

Of the blood in her own veins, to and fro.

There was a mist in the sunless air,

Which shook as it were with an earthquake's shock,

But the very weeds that blossomed there

Were moveless, and each mighty rock

Stood on its basis stedfastly;

The Anchor was seen no more on high.

But piled around, with summits hid
In lines of cloud at intervals,
Stood many a mountain pyramid
Among whose everlasting walls
Two mighty cities shone, and ever

Through the red mist their domes whose quiver.

On two dread mountains, from whose crest,
Might seem, the eagle for her brood
Would ne'er have hung her dizzy nest,

Those tower-encircled cities stood.
A vision strange such towers to see,
Sculptured and wrought so gorgeously,
Where human art could never be.

And columns framed of marble white,
And giant fanes, dome over dome
Piled, and triumphant gates, all bright
With workmanship, which could not come
From touch of mortal instrument,

Shot o'er the vales, or lustre lent
From its own shapes magnificent.

But still the Lady heard that clang
Filling the wide air far away;
And still the mist whose light did hang
Among the mountains shook alway,
So that the Lady's heart beat fast,
As half in joy, and half aghast,
On those high domes her look she cast.

Sudden from out that city sprung

A light that made the earth grow red; Two flames that each with quivering tongue Licked its bigh domes, and over head

Among those mighty towers and fanes
Dropped fire, as a volcano rains

Its sulphurous ruin on the plains.

And hark! a rush, as if the deep

Had burst its bonds; she looked behind,
And saw over the western steep

A raging flood descend, and wind
Through that wide vale: she felt no fear,
But said within herself, 'tis clear
These towers are Nature's own, and she
To save them has sent forth the sea.

And now those raging billows came
Where that fair Lady sate, and she
Was borne towards the showering flame
By the wild waves heaped tumultuously,
And, on a little plank, the flow
Of the whirlpool bore her to and fro.

The waves were fiercely vomited

From every tower and every dome, And dreary light did widely shed

O'er that vast flood's suspended foam, Beneath the smoke which hung its night On the stained cope of heaven's light.

The plank whereon that Lady sate

Was driven through the chasms, about and about, Between the peaks so desolate

Of the drowning mountain, in and out,

As the thistle-beard on a whirlwind sails

While the flood was filling those hollow vales.

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