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When o'er each babe you look a last adieu,
And gaze on Innocence that smiles asleep, Shall no fond feeling beat, to Nature true,
Charm thee to pensive thought....and bid thee weep When the young suppliants clasp their Parent dear, Heave the deep sob, and pour the artless prayer,.... Aye! thou shalt melt;....and many a heart-shed tear Gush o'er the harden'd features of despair!
Nature shall throb in ev'ry tender string,....
Thy trembling heart the ruffian's task deny;.... Thy horror-smitten hands afar shall fling
The blade, undrench'd in blood's eternal dye!
Hallow'd Earth! with indignation
Mark, oh, mark the murd'rous deed!
Radient eye of wide Creation
Watch the damned parricide!
Yet, ere Colchia's rugged daughter
And consign to kindred slaughter
Shall the hand with murder gory
Cause immortal blood to flow? Sun of Heaven!....array'd in glory Rise,....forbid....avert the blow!..........
In the vales of placid gladness
Say, hast thou, with kind protection,
Hast thou, on the troubled ocean, Brav'd the tempest loud and strong, Where the waves, in wild commotion, Roar Cyanean rocks among?
Didst thou roam the paths of danger,
Spare, O sanguinary stranger,
Shall not Heaven, with indignation,
Watch thee o'er the barb'rous deed? Shalt thou cleanse, with expiation,
Monstrous, murd'rous, parricide?
LOVE AND MADNESS;
WRITTEN IN 1795.
HARK! from the battlements of yonder tower*
"Cease, Mem'ry, cease (the friendless mourner cry'd),
To probe the bosom too severely tried!
Oh! ever cease, my pensive thoughts, to stray Through the bright fields of Fortune's better day: When youthful Hope, the music of the mind, Tun'd all its charms, and E...........n was kind!
"Yet, can I cease, while glows this trembling frame
In sighs to speak thy melancholy name!
I hear thy spirit wail in every storm!
In midnight shades I view thy passing form!
* Warwick Castle.
Pale as in that sad hour, when doom'd to feel,
"Demons of Vengeance! ye at whose command I grasp'd the sword with more than woman's hand, Say ye, did Pity's trembling voice controul, Or horror damp the purpose of my soul? · No! my wild heart sat smiling o'er the plan, 'Till Hate fulfill'd what baffled Love began!
"Yes; let the clay-cold breast, that never knew One tender pang to generous Nature true, Half-mingling pity with the gall of scorn, Condemn this heart that bled in love forlorn!
"And ye, proud fair, whose souls no gladness warms, Save Rapture's homage to your conscious charms! Delighted idols of a gaudy train!
Ill can your blunter feelings guess the pain,
"Say, then, did pitying Heav'n condemn the deed, When Vengeance bade thee, faithless lover! bleed? Long had I watch'd thy dark foreboding brow, What time thy bosom scorn'd its dearest vow!