Page images
PDF
EPUB

His hand the sounding arabeb sustain❜d;
And thus his voice in melody complain'd-
Soft as the night-bird's amorous music flows,
In Zibet's gardens, when she wooes the rose :

Bright star of Sora's sky, whose matchless blaze, Gilds thy proud tribe with mild benignant rays! Sweet flower of Azem's vale, whose matchless bloom O'er thy fam'd house spreads exquisite perfume! Blithe fawn of Kosa, at the break of dawn, Midst groves of Cassia, sporting on the lawn! Too charming Beauty! why must I bemoan Thee from my presence thus abruptly flown? Ere the shrill trump to march the signal gave, And banners high in air began to wave;

Ere the tall camel felt his wonted load,

And herds and flocks slow mov'd along the road;
Ere slow behind them march'd the warrior train,
And the struck tents left vacant all the plain ;-
Could no fond plea obtain a longer stay?
Would no kind hand th' intelligence convey?
Ah, hapless me! to Aden's port I stray'd,
Sought gold and gems, but lost my lovely maid!

'My friends, they come my sorrows to allay— Azor the wise, and Soliman the gay

One cries, Let reason hold her sober reign,
Nor love's light trifles give thy bosom pain!
For thee kind science all her lore displays,
And Fame awaits thee with the wreath of praise.'
'O why,' cries one, is she alone thy care?
She's fair, indeed, but other maids are fair:
Negima's eyes with dazzling lustre shine,
And her black tresses curl like Zebid's vine;
On Hinda's brow Kushemon's lily blows,
And on her cheek unfolds Nishapor's rose !
With them, the tale, the song, the dance shall please,
When Mirth's free banquet fills the bower of ease.'

[ocr errors]

Ah, cease,' said I, of love he little knows,

Who with sage counsel hopes to cure its woes!
Go, bid in air Yamama's lightning stay,

[ocr errors]

Or Perath's lion quit his trembling prey:
Kind Science' lore with Beauty best we share,
And Beauty's hands Fame's fairest wreaths prepare.
I praise Negima's lovely hair and eyes;
Nor Hinda's lily nor her rose despise :

But Omman's pearls diffuse a brighter beam
Than the gay pebbles of Kalafa's stream.—

"O lov'd Semira! whither dost thou rove? Tread thy soft steps by Sada's jasmine grove? Dost thou thy flocks on Ocah's mountain keep? Do Ared's olives whisper o'er thy sleep?

Ah, no!—the maid, perhaps, remote from these,
Some hostile troop in ambush laid, may seize:
Too lovely captives! she, in triumph borne,
The proud Pacha's throng'd haram shall adorn.
Vain fear! around her march her valiant friends;
Brave Omar's hand the bow of Ishmael bends ;
Strong Hassan's arm Kaaba's spear can wield,
And rear on high El-makin's ponderous shield!
Ah, shame to me! shall Sloth's dishonouring chain,
From love, from glory, Zerad here detain,

Till grief my cheek with sickly saffron spread,
And my eyes, weeping, match th' Argavan's red?
Haste, bring my steed, supreme in strength and grace,
First in the fight, and fleetest in the chase;
His sire renown'd on Gebel's hills was bred,
His beauteous dam in Derar's pastures fed:
Bring my strong lance, that ne'er impell'd in vain,
Pierc'd the fierce tiger on Hegesa's plain.
Across the desert, I her steps pursue ;

Toil at my side, and danger in my view!
There Thirst, fell demon! haunts the sultry air,
And his wild eye-balls roll with horrid glare;
There deadly Samiel, striding o'er the land,
Sweeps his red wing, and whirls the burning sand;
As winds the weary caravan along;

The fiery storm involves the hapless throng,

I go, I go, nor toil nor danger heed;

The faithful lover Safety's hand shall lead
The heart that fosters Virtue's generous flames,
Our Holy Prophet's sure protection claims.

Delightful Irem (midst the lonely waste By Shedad's hand the paradise was plac'd) Each shady tree of varied foliage shews, And every flower and every fruit bestows; There drop rich gums of every high perfume; There sing sweet birds of every gaudy plume; There soft-eyed Houries tread th' enamell❜d green— Once, and no more, the happy seat was seen; As his stray'd camel midst the wild he sought, Chance to the spot the wandering Esar brought : A blissful Irem midst the desert drear,

Semira's tent my love-sick sight shall cheer.

• What palm of beauty towers on Keran's hills? What myrrh with fragrance Sala's valley fills? "Tis she, who left so late her favourite shades, The loveliest nymph of Yemen's sportive maids! Look from thy tent, the curtains fair unfold, Give to my view thy veil of silk and gold; O lift that veil! thy radiant eyes display, Those radiant eyes shall light me on my way!

On Hejar's wild rocks from the Persian main,
Thus the moon, rising, lights the wilder'd swain.
O raise thy voice! the sound shall give delight,
Like songs of pilgrims distant heard by night!
I come, I come!'-He spoke, and seiz'd the rein,
And his fleet courser spurn'd the sandy plain.

THE NUN.

AN ELEGY.

[JERNINGHAM.]

WITH each perfection dawning on her mind,

All beauty's treasure op'ning on her cheek,
Each flatt'ring hope subdu'd, each wish resign'd,
Does gay Ophelia this lone mansion seek.

Say, gentle maid, what prompts thee to forsake
The paths thy birth and fortune strew with flow'rs?
Through Nature's kind endearing ties to break,
And waste in cloister'd walls thy pensive hours?

Let sober thought restrain thine erring zeal,
That guides thy footsteps to the vestal gate,
Lest thy soft heart, (this, friendship bids reveal)

Like mine unblest, should mourn, like mine, too late.

« EelmineJätka »