The Act 1 - Spanish Student

Scene I.— The Count OF L ARA'S chambers. Night.
The Count in his dressing-gown, smoking and
conversing with D ON C ARLOS

  Lara. You were not at the play to night, Don Carlos;
How happened it?
  Don C. I had engagements elsewhere.
Pray who was there?
  Lara. Why, all the town and court.
The house was crowded; and the busy fans
Among the gayly dressed and perfumed ladies
Fluttered like butterflies among the flowers.
There was the Countess of Medina Celi;
The Goblin Lady with her Phantom Lover,
Her Lindo Don Diego; Doña Sol,
And Doña Serafina, and her cousins
  Don C. What was the play?
  Lara. It was a dull affair;
One of those comedies in which you see,
As Lope says, the history of the world
Brought down from Genesis to the day of Judgment.
There were three duels fought in the first act,
Three gentlemen receiving deadly wounds,
Laying their hands upon their hearts, and saying,
“Oh, I am dead!” a lover in a closet,
An old hidalgo, and a gay Don Juan,
A Doña Inez with a black mantilla,
Followed at twilight by an unknown lover,
Who looks intently where he knows she is not!
  Don C. Of course, the Preciosa danced to-night?
  Lara. And never better. Every footstep fell
As lightly as a sunbeam on the water.
I think the girl extremely beautiful.
  Don C. Almost beyond the privilege of woman!
I saw her in the Prado yesterday.
Her step was royal,—queen-like,—and her face
As beautiful as a saint's in Paradise.
  Lara. May not a saint fall from her Paradise,
And be no more a saint?
  Don C. Why do you ask?
  Lara. Because I have heard it said this angel fell,
And though she is a virgin outwardly,
Within she is a sinner; like those panels
Of doors and altar-pieces the old monks
Painted in convents, with the Virgin Mary
On the outside, and on the inside Venus!
  Don C. You do her wrong; indeed, you do her wrong!
She is as virtuous as she is fair.
  Lara. How credulous you are!
  Why, look you, friend,
There's not a virtuous woman in Madrid,
In this whole city! And would you persuade me
That a mere dancing-girl, who shows herself,
Nightly, half naked, on the stage, for money,
And with voluptuous motions fires the blood
Of inconsiderate youth, is to be held
A model for her virtue?
  Don C. You forget
She is a Gypsy girl.
  Lara. And therefore won
The easier.
  Don C. Nay, not to be won at all!
The only virtue that a Gypsy prizes
Is chastity. That is her only virtue.
Dearer than life she holds it. I remember
A Gypsy woman, a vile, shameless bawd,
Whose craft was to betray the young and fair;
And yet this woman was above all bribes.
And when a noble lord, touched by her beauty,
The wild and wizard beauty of her race,
Offered her gold to be what she made others,
She turned upon him, with a look of scorn,
And smote him in the face!
  Lara. And does that prove
That Preciosa is above suspicion?
  Don C. It proves a nobleman may be repulsed
When he thinks conquest easy. I believe
That woman, in her deepest degradation,
Holds something sacred, something undefiled,
Some pledge and keepsake of her higher nature,
And, like the diamond in the dark, retains
Some quenchless gleam of the celestial light!
  Lara. Yet Preciosa would have taken the gold
  Don C. I do not think so.
  Lara. I am sure of it.
But why this haste? Stay yet a little longer,
And fight the battles of your Dulcinea.
  Don C. 'T is late. I must begone, for if I stay
You will not be persuaded.
  Lara. Yes; persuade me.
  Don C. No one so deaf as he who will not hear!
  Lara. No one so blind as he who will not see!
  Don C. And so good-night. I wish you pleasant dreams,
And greater faith in woman
  Lara. Greater faith!
I have the greatest faith; for I believe
Victorian is her lover. I believe
That I shall be to-morrow; and thereafter
Another, and another, and another,
Chasing each other through her zodiac,
As Taurus chases Aries.

Well, Francisco,
What speed with Preciosa?
  Fran. None, my lord
She sends your jewels back, and bids me tell you
She is not to be purchased by your gold.
  Lara. Then I will try some other way to win her
Pray, dost thou know Victorian?
  Fran. Yes, my lord;
I saw him at the jeweller's to-day.
  Lara. What was he doing there?
  Fran. I saw him buy
A golden ring, that had a ruby in it.
  Lara. Was there another like it?
  Fran. One so like it
I could not choose between them.
  Lara. It is well.
To-morrow morning bring that ring to me.
Do not forget. Now light me to my bed.

Scene II.— A street in Madrid Enter C HISPA , followed by musicians, with a bagpipe, guitars, and other instruments .

Chispa. Abernuncio Satanas! and a plague on all lovers who ramble about at night drinking the elements, instead of sleeping quietly in their beds. Every dead man to his cemetery, say I; and every friar to his monastery. Now, here's my master, Victorian, yesterday a cow-keeper, and to-day a gentleman; yesterday a student, and to-day a lover; and I must be up later than the nightingale, for as the abbot sings so must the sacristan respond. God grant he may soon be married, for then shall all this serenading cease. Ay, marry! marry! marry! Mother, what does marry mean? It means to spin, to bear children, and to weep, my daughter! And, of a truth, there is something more in matrimony than the wedding-ring. ( To the musicians ) And now, gentlemen, Pax vobiscum! as the ass said to the cabbages. Pray, walk this way; and don't hang down your heads. It is no disgrace to have an old father and a ragged shirt. Now, look you, you are gentlemen who lead the life of crickets; you enjoy hunger by day and noise by night. Yet, I beseech you, for this once be not loud, but pathetic; for it is a serenade to a damsel in bed, and not to the Man in the Moon. Your object is not to arouse and terrify, but to soothe and bring lulling dreams. Therefore, each shall not play upon his instrument as if it were the only one in the universe, but gently, and with a certain modesty, according with the others Pray, how may I call thy name, friend?
First Mus. Gerónimo Gil, at your service.
Chispa. Every tub smells of the wine that is in it. Pray, Gerónimo, is not Saturday an unpleasant day with thee?
First Mus. Why so?
Chispa. Because I have heard it said that Saturday is an unpleasant day with those who have but one shirt. Moreover, I have seen thee at the tavern, and if thou canst run as fast as thou canst drink, I should like to hunt hares with thee. What instrument is that?
First Mus. An Aragonese bagpipe.
Chispa. Pray, art thou related to the bagpiper of Bujalance, who asked a maravedi for playing, and ten for leaving off?
First Mus. No, your honor.
Chispa. I am glad of it. What other instruments have we?
Second and Third Musicians . We play the bandurria.
Chispa. A pleasing instrument. And thou?
Fourth Mus. The fife.
Chispa. I like it; it has a cheerful, soul-stirring sound, that soars up to my lady's window like the song of a swallow. And you others?
Other Mus. We are the singers, please your honor.
Chispa. You are too many. Do you think we are going to sing mass in the cathedral of Cordova? Four men can make but little use of one shoe, and I see not how you can all sing in one song. But follow me along the garden wall. That is the way my master climbs to the lady's window. It is by the Vicar's skirts that the Devil climbs into the belfry. Come, follow me, and make no noise.

Scene III.—P RECIOSA'S chamber She stands at the open window .

  Prec. How slowly through the lilac-scented air
Descends the tranquil moon! Like thistledown
The vapory clouds float in the peaceful sky;
And sweetly from yon hollow vaults of shade
The nightingales breathe out their souls in song.
And hark! what songs of love, what soul-like sounds,
Answer them from below!


Stars of the summer night!
 Far in yon azure deeps,
Hide, hide your golden light!
 She sleeps!
My lady sleeps!

Moon of the summer night!
 Far down yon western steeps,
Sink, sink in silver light!
 She sleeps!
My lady sleeps!

Wind of the summer night!
 Where yonder woodbine creeps,
Fold, fold thy pinions light!
 She sleeps!
My lady sleeps!

Dreams of the summer night!
 Tell her, her lover keeps
Watch! while in slumbers light
 She sleeps!
My lady sleeps!

Vict. Poor little dove! Thou tremblest like a leaf!
  Prec. I am so frightened! 'T is for thee I tremble!
I hate to have thee climb that wall by night!
Did no one see thee?
  Vict. None, my love, but thou.
  Prec. 'T is very dangerous; and when thou art gone
I chide myself for letting thee come here
Thus stealthily by night. Where hast thou been?
Since yesterday I have no news from thee.
  Vict. Since yesterday I have been in Alcalá.
Erelong the time will come, sweet Preciosa,
When that dull distance shall no more divide us;
And I no more shall scale thy wall by night
To steal a kiss from thee, as I do now
  Prec. An honest thief, to steal but what thou givest.
  Vict. And we shall sit together unmolested,
And words of true love pass from tongue to tongue,
As singing birds from one bough to another.
  Prec. That were a life to make time envious!
I knew that thou wouldst come to me to-night.
I saw thee at the play.
  Vict. Sweet child of air!
Never did I behold thee so attired
And garmented in beauty as to-night!
What hast thou done to make thee look so fair?
  Prec. Am I not always fair?
  Vict. Ay, and so fair
That I am jealous of all eyes that see thee,
And wish that they were blind.
  Prec. I heed them not;
When thou art present, I see none but thee!
  Vict. There's nothing fair nor beautiful, but takes
Something from thee, that makes it beautiful.
  Prec. And yet thou leavest me for those dusty books.
  Vict. Thou comest between me and those books too often!
I see thy face in everything I see!
The paintings in the chapel wear thy looks,
The canticles are changed to sarabands,
And with the learned doctors of the schools
I see thee dance cachuchas.
  Prec. In good sooth,
I dance with learned doctors of the schools
To-morrow morning.
  Vict. And with whom, I pray?
  Prec. A grave and Reverend Cardinal, and his Grace
The Archbishop of Toledo.
  Vict. What mad jest
Is this?
  Prec. It is no jest; indeed it is not.
  Vict. Prithee, explain thyself
  Prec. Why, simply thus.
Thou knowest the Pope has sent here into Spain
To put a stop to dances on the stage
  Vict. I have heard it whispered.
  Prec. Now the Cardinal,
Who for this purpose comes, would fain behold
With his own eyes these dances; and the Archbishop
Has sent for me—
  Vict. That thou mayest dance before them!
Now viva la cachucha! It will breathe
The fire of youth into these gray old men!
'T will be thy proudest conquest!
  Prec. Saving one.
And yet I fear these dances will be stopped,
And Preciosa be once more a beggar.
  Vict. The sweetest beggar that e'er asked for alms;
With such beseeching eyes, that when I saw thee
I gave my heart away!
  Prec. Dost thou remember
When first we met?
  Vict. It was at Córdova,
In the cathedral garden. Thou wast sitting
Under the orange trees, beside a fountain.
  Prec. 'Twas Easter Sunday. The full-blossomed trees
Filled all the air with fragrance and with joy.
The priests were singing, and the organ sounded,
And then anon the great cathedral bell
It was the elevation of the Host.
We both of us fell down upon our knees,
Under the orange boughs, and prayed together.
I never had been happy till that moment.
  Vict. Thou blessed angel!
  Prec. And when thou wast gone
I felt an aching here. I did not speak
To any one that day. But from that day
Bartolomé grew hateful unto me.
  Vict. Remember him no more. Let not his shadow
Come between thee and me. Sweet Preciosa!
I loved thee even then, though I was silent!
  Prec. I thought I ne'er should see thy face again.
Thy farewell had a sound of sorrow in it.
  Vict. That was the first sound in the song of love!
Scarce more than silence is, and yet a sound.
Hands of invisible spirits touch the strings
Of that mysterious instrument, the soul,
And play the prelude of our fate. We hear
The voice prophetic, and are not alone.
  Prec. That is my faith. Dost thou believe these warnings?
  Vict. So far as this. Our feelings and our thoughts
Tend over on, and rest not in the Present.
As drops of rain fall into some dark well,
And from below comes a scarce audible sound,
So fall our thoughts into the dark Hereafter,
And their mysterious echo reaches us.
  Prec. I have felt it so, but found no words to say it!
I cannot reason; I can only feel!
But thou hast language for all thoughts and feelings.
Thou art a scholar; and sometimes I think
We cannot walk together in this world!
The distance that divides us is too great!
Henceforth thy pathway lies among the stars;
I must not hold thee back
  Vict. Thou little sceptic!
Dost thou still doubt? What I most prize in woman
Is her affections, not her intellect!
The intellect is finite; but the affections
Are infinite, and cannot be exhausted.
Compare me with the great men of the earth;
What am I? Why, a pygmy among giants!
But if thou lovest,—mark me! I say lovest,—
The greatest of thy sex excels thee not!
The world of the affections is thy world,
Not that of man's ambition. In that stillness
Which most becomes a woman, calm and holy.
Thou sittest by the fireside of the heart,
Feeding its flame. The element of fire
Is pure. It cannot change nor hide its nature,
But burns as brightly in a Gypsy camp
As in a palace hall. Art thou convinced?
  Prec. Yes, that I love thee, as the good love heaven;
But not that I am worthy of that heaven.
How shall I more deserve it?
  Vict. Loving more
  Prec. I cannot love thee more; my heart is full
  Vict. Then let it overflow, and I will drink it,
As in the summer time the thirsty sands
Drink the swift waters of the Manzanares,
And still do thirst for more.
  A Watchman Ave Maria
Purissima! 'T is midnight and serene!
  Vict. Hear'st thou that cry?
  Prec. It is a hateful sound
To scare thee from me!
  Vict. As the hunter's horn
Doth scare the timid stag, or bark of hounds
The moor-fowl from his mate.
  Prec. Pray, do not go!
  Vict. I must away to Alcalá to night.
Think of me when I am away.
  Prec. Fear not!
I have no thoughts that do not think of thee.
  Vict. And to remind thee of my love, take this;
A serpent, emblem of Eternity;
A ruby,—say, a drop of my heart's blood.
  Prec. It is an ancient saying, that the ruby
Brings gladness to the wearer, and preserves
The heart pure, and, if laid beneath the pillow,
Drives away evil dreams. But then, alas!
It was a serpent tempted Eve to sin.
  Vict. What convent of barefooted Carmelites
Taught thee so much theology?
  Prec. Hush! hush!
Good night! and may all holy angels guard thee!
  Vict. Good night! good night!
  Thou art my guardian angel!
I have no other saint than thou to pray to!
  Prec. Take care, and do not hurt thee. Art thou safe?
  Vict. Safe as my love for thee! But art thou safe?
Others can climb a balcony by moon-light
As well as I. Pray shut thy window close;
I am jealous of the perfumed air of night
That from this garden climbs to kiss thy lips.
  Prec. Thou silly child! Take this to blind thine eyes.
It is my benison!
  Vict. And brings to me
Sweet fragrance from thy lips, as the soft wind
Wafts to the out-bound mariner the breath
Of the beloved land he leaves behind
  Prec. Make not thy voyage long.
  Vict. To-morrow night
Shall see me safe returned. Thou art the star
To guide me to an anchorage. Good night!
My beauteous star! My star of love, good night!
  Prec. Good night!
  Watchman . Ave Maria Purissima!

Scene IV.— An inn on the road to Alcalá . B ALTASAR asleep on a bench. Enter C HISPA .

Chispa. And here we are, half-way to Alcalá, between cocks and mid-night. Body o' me! what an inn this is! The lights out, and the landlord asleep. Holá! ancient Baltasar!
  Bal. Here I am.
Chispa Yes, there you are, like a one-eyed Alcalde in a town without inhabitants. Bring a light, and let me have supper.
Bal. Where is your master?
Chispa. Do not trouble yourself about him. We have stopped a moment to breathe our horses; and if he chooses to walk up and down in the open air, looking into the sky as one who hears it rain, that does not satisfy my hunger, you know. But be quick, for I am in a hurry, and every man stretches his legs according to the length of his coverlet. What have we here?
Bal. Stewed rabbit.
Chispa. Conscience of Portalegre! Stewed kitten, you mean!
Bal. And a pitcher of Pedro Ximenes, with a roasted pear in it.
Chispa. Ancient Baltasar, amigo! You know how to cry wine and sell vinegar. I tell you this is nothing but Vinto Tinto of La Mancha, with a tang of the swine skin.
Bal. I swear to you by Saint Simon and Judas, it is all as I say.
Chispa. And I swear to you by Saint Peter and Saint Paul, that it is no such thing. Moreover, your supper is like the hidalgo's dinner, very little meat and a great deal of table-cloth.
Bal. Ha! ha! ha!
Chispa. And more noise than nuts.
Bal. Ha! ha! ha! You must have your joke, Master Chispa. But shall I not ask Don Victorian in, to take a draught of the Pedro Ximenes?
Chispa. No; you might as well say, “Don't-you-want-some?” to a dead man.
Bal. Why does he go so often to Madrid?
Chispa. For the same reason that he eats no supper. He is in love. Were you ever in love, Baltasar?
Bal. I was never out of it, good
Chispa. It has been the torment of my life.
  Chispa. What! are you on fire, too, old haystack? Why, we shall never be able to put you out.
  Vict. Chispa!
  Chispa. Go to bed, Pero Grullo, for the cocks are crowing.
  Vict. Ea! Chispa! Chispa!
  Chispa. Ea! Señor. Come with me, ancient Baltasar, and bring water for the horses. I will pay for the supper to-morrow.

Scene V.—V ICTORIAN'S chambers at Alcald . H YPOLITO asleep in an arm-chair. He awakes slowly .

  Hyp. I must have been asleep! ay, sound asleep!
And it was all a dream O sleep, sweet sleep!
Whatever form thou takest, thou art fair,
Holding unto our lips thy goblet filled
Out of Oblivion's well, a healing draught!
The candles have burned low; it must be late.
Where can Victorian be? Like Fray Carrillo,
The only place in which one cannot find him
Is his own cell. Here's his guitar, that seldom
Feels the caresses of its master's hand.
Open thy silent lips, sweet instrument!
And make dull midnight merry with a song.

Padre Francisco!
Padre Francisco!
What do you want of Padre Francisco?
 Here is a pretty young maiden
 Who wants to confess her sins!
Open the door and let her come in,
I will shrive her of every sin.

Vict. Padre Hypolito! Padre Hypolito!
Hyp. What do you want of Padre Hypolito?
Vict. Come, shrive me straight; for, if love be a sin,
I am the greatest sinner that doth live.
I will confess the sweetest of all crimes,
A maiden wooed and won.
  Hyp. The same old tale
Of the old woman in the chimney-corner,
Who, while the pot boils, says, “Come here, my child;
I 'll tell thee a story of my wedding day.”
  Vict. Nay, listen, for my heart is full; so full
That I must speak.
  Hyp. Alas! that heart of thine
Is like a scene in the old play; the curtain
Rises to solemn music, and lo! enter
The eleven thousand virgins of Cologne!
  Vict. Nay, like the Sibyl's volumes, thou shouldst say;
Those that remained, after the six were burned,
Being held more precious than the nine together.
But listen to my tale. Dost thou remember
The Gypsy girl we saw at Córdova
Dance the Romalis in the market place?
  Hyp. Thou meanest Preciosa.
  Vict. Ay, the same.
Thou knowest how her image haunted me
Long after we returned to Alcalá
She's in Madrid.
  Hyp. I know it.
  Vict. And I'm in love.
  Hyp. And therefore in Madrid when thou shouldst be
In Alcalá.
  Vict. Oh pardon me, my friend
If I so long have kept this secret from thee;
But silence is the charm that guards such treasures,
And, if a word be spoken ere the time,
They sink again, they were not meant for us.
  Hyp. Alas! alas! I see thou art in love.
Love keeps the cold out better than a cloak
It serves for food and raiment. Give a Spaniard
His mass, his olla, and his Doña Luisa—
Thou knowest the proverb. But pray tell me, lover,
How speeds thy wooing? Is the maiden coy?
Write her a song, beginning with an Ave ;
Sing as the monk sang to the Virgin Mary,

Ave! cujus calcem clare
Nec centenni commendare
 Sciret Seraph studio!
  Vict. Pray, do not jest! This is no time for it!
I am in earnest!
  Hyp. Seriously enamored?
What, ho! The Primus of great Alcalá
Enamored of a Gypsy? Tell me frankly,
How meanest thou?
  Vict. I mean it honestly.
  Hyp. Surely thou wilt not marry her!
  Vict. Why not?
  Hyp. She was betrothed to one Bartolomé,
If I remember rightly, a young Gypsy
Who danced with her at Córdova.
  Vict. They quarrelled,
And so the matter ended.
  Hyp. But in truth
Thou wilt not marry her.
  Vict. In truth I will.
The angels sang in heaven when she was born!
She is a precious jewel I have found
Among the filth and rubbish of the world.
I'll stoop for it; but when I wear it here,
Set on my forehead like the morning star,
The world may wonder, but it will not laugh.
  Hyp. If thou wear'st nothing else upon thy forehead,
'T will be indeed a wonder.
  Vict. Out upon thee
With thy unseasonable jests! Pray tell me,
Is there no virtue in the world?
  Hyp. Not much.
What, think'st thou, is she doing at this moment;
Now, while we speak of her?
  Vict. She lies asleep,
And from her parted lips her gentle breath
Comes like the fragrance from the lips of flowers.
Her tender limbs are still, and on her breast
The cross she prayed to, ere she fell asleep,
Rises and falls with the soft tide of dreams,
Like a light barge safe moored.
  Hyp. Which means, in prose,
She's sleeping with her mouth a little open!
  Vict. Oh, would I had the old magician's glass
To see her as she lies in child-like sleep!
  Hyp. And wouldst thou venture?
  Vict. Ay, indeed I would!
  Hyp. Thou art courageous. Hast thou e'er reflected
How much lies hidden in that one word, now?
  Vict. Yes; all the awful mystery of Life!
I oft have thought, my dear Hypolito,
That could we, by some spell of magic, change
The world and its inhabitants to stone,
In the same attitudes they now are in,
What fearful glances downward might we cast
Into the hollow chasms of human life!
What groups should we behold about the death-bed,
Putting to shame the group of Niobe!
What joyful welcomes, and what sad farewells!
What stony tears in those congealèd eyes!
What visible joy or anguish in those cheeks!
What bridal pomps, and what funereal shows!
What foes, like gladiators, fierce and struggling!
What lovers with their marble lips together!
  Hyp. Ay, there it is! and, if I were in love,
That is the very point I most should dread
This magic glass, these magic spells of thine,
Might tell a tale were better left untold.
For instance, they might show us thy fair cousin,
The Lady Violante, bathed in tears
Of love and anger, like the maid of Colchis,
Whom thou, another faithless Argonaut,
Having won that golden fleece, a woman's love,
Desertest for this Glauce.
  Vict. Hold thy peace!
She cares not for me. She may wed another,
Or go into a convent, and, thus dying,
Marry Achilles in the Elysian Fields.
  Hyp. And so, good night!
  Good-morning, I should say

Hark! how the loud and ponderous mace of Time
Knocks at the golden portals of the day!
And so, once more, good night! We'll speak more largely
Of Preciosa when we meet again.
Get thee to bed, and the magician, Sleep,
Shall show her to thee, in his magic glass,
In all her loveliness. Good night!
  Vict. Good night!
But not to bed; for I must read awhile

Must read, or sit in revery and watch
The changing color of the waves that break
Upon the idle sea-shore of the mind!
Visions of Fame! that once did visit me,
Making night glorious with your smile, where are ye?
Oh, who shall give me, now that ye are gone,
Juices of those immortal plants that bloom
Upon Olympus, making us immortal?
Or teach me where that wondrous mandrake grows
Whose magic root, torn from the earth with groans,
At midnight hour, can scare the fiends away,
And make the mind prolific in its fancies?
I have the wish, but want the will, to act!
Souls of great men departed! Ye whose words
Have come to light from the swift river of Time,
Like Roman swords found in the Tagus' bed,
Where is the strength to wield the arms ye bore?
From the barred visor of Antiquity
Reflected shines the eternal light of Truth,
As from a mirror! All the means of action—
The shapeless masses, the materials—
Lie everywhere about us. What we need
Is the celestial fire to change the flint
Into transparent crystal, bright and clear.
That fire is genius! The rude peasant sits
At evening in his smoky cot, and draws
With charcoal uncouth figures on the wall.
The son of genius comes, foot-sore with travel,
And begs a shelter from the inclement night.
He takes the charcoal from the peasant's hand,
And, by the magic of his touch at once
Transfigured, all its hidden virtues shine,
And, in the eyes of the astonished clown,
It gleams a diamond! Even thus transformed,
Rude popular traditions and old tales
Shine as immortal poems, at the touch
Of some poor, houseless, homeless, wandering bard,
Who had but a night's lodging for his pains.
But there are brighter dreams than those of Fame,
Which are the dreams of Love! Out of the heart
Rises the bright ideal of these dreams,
As from some woodland fount a spirit rises
And sinks again into its silent deeps,
Ere the enamored knight can touch her robe!
'T is this ideal that the soul of man,
Like the enamored knight beside the fountain,
Waits for upon the margin of Life's stream;
Waits to behold her rise from the dark waters,
Clad in a mortal shape! Alas! how many
Must wait in vain! The stream flows evermore,
But from its silent deeps no spirit rises!
Yet I, born under a propitious star,
Have found the bright ideal of my dreams.
Yes! she is ever with me. I can feel,
Here, as I sit at midnight and alone,
Her gentle breathing! on my breast can feel
The pressure of her head! God's benison
Rest ever on it! Close those beauteous eyes,
Sweet Sleep! and all the flowers that bloom at night
With balmy lips breathe in her ears my name!
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