« PreviousContinue »
My Lycus ! wherefore dost thou weep ?
Thy falling tears restrain; Affection for a time may sleep,
But, oh, 'twill wake again. Think, think, my friend, when next we meet, Our long-wished interview, how sweet!
From this my hope of rapture springs; While youthful hearts thus fondly swell, Absence, my friend, can only tell,
• Friendship is Love without his wings !
and one alone decei
Did I my error mourn ?
No-from oppressive bonds relieved,
I left the wretch to scorn.
I turned to those my childhood knew,
With feelings warm, with bosoms true,
Twined with my heart's according strings:
And till those vital chords shall break,
For none but these my breast shall wake
Friendship, the power deprived of wings!
Ye few, my soul, my life is yours,
My memory and my hope;
Your worth a lasting love ensures,
Unsettered in its scope;
From smooth deceit and terror sprung
With aspect fair and honeyed tongue,
Let Adulation wait on kings;
With joy elate, by snares beset,
We-we, my friends, can ne'er forget,
Friendship is Love without his wings !"
Fictions and dreams inspire the bard
Who rolls the epic song;
Friendship and Truth be my reward
To me no bays belong;
If laurelled Fame but dwells with lies,
Me the enchantress ever flies,
Whose heart and not whose fancy sings;
Simple and young, I dare not feign;
Mine be the rude yet heartful strain,
“Friendship is Love without his wings !"
In storms. Time draweth wrinkles in a fair
Face, but addeth fresh colours to a fast
Friend, which neither heat, nor cold, nor mis'ry,
Nor place, nor destiny, can alter or
Diminish. O friendship! of all things the
Most rare, and therefore most rare, because most
Excellent; whose comforts in misery
Are always sweet, and whose counsels in
Prosperity are ever fortunate.
Vain love! that only coming near to friendship
In name, would seem to be the same, or better,
A REMINISCENCE OF EARLY
FRIENDSHIP! mysterious cement of the soul;
Sweet'ner of life, and solder of society,
I owe thee much. Thou hast deserved from me,
Far, far beyond what I can ever pay.
Oft have I proved the labours of thy love,
And the warm efforts of thy gentle heart,
Anxious to please. Oh! when my friend and I
In some thick wood have wandered heedless on.
Hid from the vulgar eye, and sat us down
Upon the sloping cowslip-covered bank,
Where the pure limpid stream has slid along
In grateful errors through the underwood
Sweet murmuring: methought the shrill-tongued
Mended his song of love; the sooty blackbird
Mellowed his pipe, and softened every note:
The eglantine smelled sweeter, and the rose
Assumed a dye more deep; whilst every flower
Vied with its fellow plant in luxury
Of dress. Oh! then the longest summer's day
Seemed too, too much in haste! still the full heart
Had not imparted half; 'twas happiness
Too exquisite to last. Of joys departed,
Not to return, how painful the remembrance !
In earlier days, and calmer hours,
When heart with heart delights to blend, Where bloom my native valley's bowers
I had—Ah! have I now ?—a friend!
To him this ring I charge thee send,
Memorial of a youthful vow;
I would remind him of mine end :
Though souls absorbed like mine allow
Brief thought to distant friendship's claim
Yet dear to him my blighted rame.
'Tis strange-he prophesied my doom,
And I have smiled-I then could smile When Prudence would his voice assume,
And warn-I recked not what-the while And now remembrance whispers o'er Those accents scarcely marked before. Say--that his bodings came to pass,
And he will start to hear their truth,
And wish his words had not been sooth: Tell him, unheeding as I was,
Through many a bitter scene
Of all our golden youth had been, In pain, my faltering tongue had tried To bless his memory ere I died ;
But Heaven in wrath would turn away,
If Guilt should for the guiltless pray.
I do not ask him not to blame,
Too gentle he to wound my name;
And what have I to do with fame ?
I do not ask him not to mourn,
Such cold request might sound like scorn;
And what than friendship's manly tear
May better grace a brothers bier ?
And bear this ring, his own of old,
And tell him-what thou dost behold!
The withered frame, the ruined mind,
The wrack by passion left behind,
A shrivelled scroll, a scattered leaf,
Seared by the Autumn blast of grief!
I did send
To you for gold to pay my legions,
Which you deny'd me: Was that done like
Should I have answer'd Caius Cassius so?
When Marcus Brutus grows so covetous,
To lock such rascal counters from his friends,
Be ready, gods, with all your thunderbolts,
Dash him to pieces!