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JOANNA BAILLIE.

THE PHRENZY OF ORRA.

Hartman.

Theobald. Her body is.

Is she well?

Hart. And not her mind? oh, direst wreck of all!
That noble mind!-But 'tis some passing seizure,
Some powerful movement of a transient nature;
It is not madness!

Theo. 'Tis Heaven's infliction; let us call it so;
Give it no other name.

Eleanora. Nay, do not thus despair; when she beholds us, She'll know her friends, and, by our kindly soothing, Be gradually restored

Alice.

Let me go to her.

Theo. Nay, forbear, I pray thee;

I will myself with thee, my worthy Hartman,

Go in and lead her forth.

Orra.

Come back, come back! the fierce and fiery light! Theo. Shrink not, dear love! it is the light of day. Orra. Have cocks crow'd yet?

Theo. Yes; twice I've heard already

Their matin sound. Look up to the blue sky-
Is it not daylight there? And these green boughs
Are fresh and fragrant round thee; every sense
Tells thee it is the cheerful early day.

Orra. Aye, so it is; day takes his daily turn,
Rising between the gulfy dells of night,
Like whiten'd billows on a gloomy sea.

Till glow-worms gleam, and stars peep through the dark,
And will-o'-the-wisp his dancing taper light,
They will not come again.

[Bending her ear to the ground. Hark, hark! aye, hark!

They are all there: I hear their hollow sound
Full many a fathom down.

Theo. Be still, poor troubled soul! they'll ne'er return-
They are for ever gone. Be well assured

Thou shalt from henceforth have a cheerful home,
With crackling fagots on thy midnight fire,
Blazing like day around thee; and thy friends-
Thy living, loving friends-still by thy side,
To speak to thee and cheer thee. See, my Orra!
They are beside thee now; dost thou not know them?
Orra. No, no! athwart the wav'ring garish light,
Things move and seem to be, and yet are nothing.

Elea. My gentle Orra! hast thou then forgot me?
Dost not thou know my voice?

Orra. 'Tis like an old tune to my ear return'd. For there be those who sit in cheerful halls,

And breathe sweet air, and speak with pleasant sounds;
And once I liv'd with such; some years gone by,-

I wot not now how long.

Hughobert. Keen words that rend my heart! thou hadst a home, And one whose faith was pledged for thy protection.

Urston. Be more composed, my Lord; some faint remembrance Returns upon her, with the well-known sound

Of voices once familiar to her ear.

Let Alice sing to her some fav'rite tune,
That may lost thoughts recall.

[Alice sings.

Orra. Ha, ha! the witch'd air sings for thee bravely.
Hoot owls through mantling fog for matin birds?
It lures not me.-I know thee well enough:
The bones of murder'd men thy measure beat,
And fleshless heads nod to thee-Off, I say!

Why are ye here?-That is the blessed sun.
Elea. Ah, Orra! do not look upon us thus;
These are the voices of thy loving friends
That speak to thee; this is a friendly hand
That presses thine so kindly.

Hart.

Oh, grievous state! what terror seizes thee?
Orra. Take it away! It was the swathed dead;
I know its clammy, chill, and bony touch.
Come not again; I'm strong and terrible now:

Mine eyes have look'd upon all dreadful things;

And when the earth yawns, and the hell-blast sounds,
I'll bide the trooping of unearthly steps,

With stiff, clench'd, terrible strength.

Hugh. A murd'rer is a guiltless wretch to me.
Hart. Be patient; 'tis a momentary pitch;

Let me encounter it.

Orra. Take off from me thy strangely-fasten'd eye;
I may not look upon thee-yet I must.
Unfix thy baleful glance. Art thou a snake?
Something of horrid power within thee dwells.
Still, still that powerful eye doth suck me in
Like a dark eddy to its wheeling core.
Spare me! O spare me, Being of strange power,
And at thy feet my subject head I'll lay.

Elea. Alas, the piteous sight! to see her thus,
The noble, generous, playful, stately Orra!

Theo. Out on thy hateful and ungenerous guile!
Think'st thou I'll suffer o'er her wretched state
The slightest shadow of a base control?

[Raising Orra from the ground. No; rise, thou stately flower with rude blasts rent; As honour'd art thou with thy broken stem And leaflets strew'd, as in thy summer's pride. I've seen thee worshipp'd like a regal Dame, With every studied form of mark'd devotion, Whilst I, in distant silence, scarcely proffer'd Ev'n a plain soldier's courtesy; but now,

No liege man to his crownèd mistress sworn,
Bound and devoted is as I to thee;

And he who offers to thy alter'd state

The slightest seeming of diminish'd rev'rence,

Must in my blood-(To Hartman)-O pardon me, my friend! Thou'st wrung my heart.

Hart. Nay, do thou pardon me,-I am to blame:

Thy nobler heart shall not again be wrung.
But what can now be done? O'er such wild ravings
There must be some control.

Theo. O none! none! none! but gentle sympathy, And watchfulness of love.

My noble Orra! Wander where'er thou wilt, thy vagrant steps Shall follow'd be by one, who shall not weary, Nor e'er detach him from his hopeless task; Bound to thee now as fairest, gentlest beauty Could ne'er have bound him.

Alice. See how she gazes on him with a look,
Subsiding gradually to softer sadness,
Half saying that she knows him.

El.

There is a kindness in her changing eye.

GRAHAME.

THE SABBATH.

How still the morning of the hallow'd day!
Mute is the voice of rural labour, hush'd

The plough-boy's whistle, and the milk-maid's song.
The scythe lies glittering in the dewy wreath
Of tedded grass, mingled with fading flowers,
That yestermorn bloom'd waving in the breeze;
Sounds the most faint attract the ear,-the hum
Of early bee, the trickling of the dew,
The distant bleating, midway up the hill.
Calmness sits throned on yon unmoving cloud.
To him who wanders o'er the upland leas,
The blackbird's note comes mellower from the dale;
And sweeter from the sky the gladsome lark
Warbles his heaven-tun'd song; the lulling brook
Murmurs more gently down the deep-worn glen;
While from yon lowly roof, whose circling smoke
O'er-mounts the mist, is heard, at intervals,
The voice of Psalms, the simple song of praise.
With dove-like wings Peace o'er yon village broods;
The dizzying mill-wheel rests; the anvil's din
Hath ceas'd; all, all around is quietness.
Less fearful on this day, the limping hare

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