The Night-Scene : A Dramatic Fragment. – Poem by Samuel Taylor Coleridge
Sandoval. You loved the daughter of Don Manrique?
Earl Henry. Loved?
Sandoval. Did you not say you wooed her?
Earl Henry. Once I loved
Her whom I dared not woo!
Sandoval. And wooed, perchance,
One whom you loved not!
Earl Henry. Oh! I were most base,
Not loving Oropeza. True, I wooed her,
Hoping to heal a deeper wound; but she
Met my advances with impassioned pride,
That kindled love with love. And when her sire,
Who in his dream of hope already grasped
The golden circlet in his hand, rejected
My suit with insult, and in memory
Of ancient feuds poured curses on my head,
Her blessings overtook and baffled them!
But thou art stern, and with unkindly countenance
Art inly reasoning whilst thou listenest to me.
Sandoval. Anxiously, Henry! reasoning anxiously.
But Oropeza —
Blessings gather round her!
Within this wood there winds a secret passage,
Beneath the walls, which opens out at length
Into the gloomiest covert of the garden. —
The night ere my departure to the army,
She, nothing trembling, led me through that gloom,
And to that covert by a silent stream,
Which, with one star reflected near its marge,
Was the sole object visible around me.
No leaflet stirred; the air was almost sultry;
So deep, so dark, so close, the umbrage o’er us!
No leaflet stirred; — yet pleasure hung upon
The gloom and stillness of the balmy night-air.
A little further on an arbour stood,
Fragrant with flowering trees — I well remember
What an uncertain glimmer in the darkness
Their snow-white blossoms made — thither she led me,
To that sweet bower! Then Oropeza trembled —
I heard her heart beat — if ’twere not my own.
Sandoval. A rude and scaring note, my friend!
Earl Henry. Oh! no!
I have small memory of aught but pleasure.
The inquietudes of fear, like lesser streams
Still flowing, still were lost in those of love:
So love grew mightier from the fear, and Nature,
Fleeing from pain, sheltered herself in joy.
The stars above our heads were dim and steady,
Like eyes suffused with rapture. — Life was in us:
We were all life, each atom of our frames
A living soul — I vowed to die for her:
With the faint voice of one who, having spoken,
Relapses into blessedness, I vowed it:
That solemn vow, a whisper scarcely heard,
A murmur breathed against a lady’s ear.
Oh! there is joy above the name of pleasure,
Deep self-possession, an intense repose.
Sandoval [with a sarcastic smile]. No other than as eastern sages paint,
The God, who floats upon a lotos leaf,
Dreams for a thousand ages; then awaking,
Creates a world, and smiling at the bubble,
Relapses into bliss.
Earl Henry. Ah! was that bliss
Feared as an alien, and too vast for man?
For suddenly, impatient of its silence,
Did Oropeza, starting, grasp my forehead.
I caught her arms; the veins were swelling on them.
Through the dark bower she sent a hollow voice; —
`Oh! what if all betray me? what if thou?’
I swore, and with an inward thought that seemed
The purpose and the substance of my being,
I swore to her, that were she red with guilt,
I would exchange my unblenched state with hers. —
Friend! by that winding passage, to that bower
I now will go — all objects there will teach me
Unwavering love, and singleness of heart.
Go, Sandoval! I am prepared to meet her —
Say nothing of me — I myself will seek her —
Nay, leave me, friend! I cannot bear the torment
And keen inquiry of that scanning eye. —
[Earl Henry retires into the wood.]
Sandoval [alone]. O Henry! always striv’st thou to be great
By thine own act — yet art thou never great
But by the inspiration of great passion.
The whirl-blast comes, the desert-sands rise up
And shape themselves: from earth to heaven they stand,
As though they were the pillars of a temple,
Built by Omnipotence in its own honour!
But the blast pauses, and their shaping spirit
Is fled: the mighty columns were but sand,
And lazy snakes trail o’er the level ruins!
Dramatic Fragment – Poem by Henry Timrod
Let the boy have his will! I tell thee, brother,
We treat these little ones too much like flowers,
Training them, in blind selfishness, to deck
Sticks of our poor setting, when they might,
If left to clamber where themselves incline,
Find nobler props to cling to, fitter place,
And sweeter air to bloom in. It is wrong —
Thou striv’st to sow with feelings all thine own,
With thoughts and hopes, anxieties and aims,
Born of thine own peculiar self, and fed
Upon a certain round of circumstance,
A soul as different and distinct from thine
As love of goodness is from love of glory,
Or noble poesy from noble prose.
I could forgive thee, if thou wast of them
Who do their fated parts in this world’s business,
Scarce knowing how or why — for common minds
See not the difference ‘twixt themselves and others —
But thou, thou, with the visions which thy youth did cherish
Substantialized upon thy regal brow,
Shouldst boast a deeper insight. We are born,
It is my faith, in miniature completeness,
And like each other only in our weakness.
Even with our mother’s milk upon our lips,
Our smiles have different meanings, and our hands
Press with degrees of softness to her bosom.
It is not change — whatever in the heart
That wears its semblance, we, in looking back,
With gratulation or regret, perceive —
It is not change we undergo, but only
Growth or development. Yes! what is childhood
But after all a sort of golden daylight,
A beautiful and blessed wealth of sunshine,
Wherein the powers and passions of the soul
Sleep starlike but existent, till the night
Of gathering years shall call the slumbers forth,
And they rise up in glory? Early grief,
A shadow like the darkness of eclipse,
Hath sometimes waked them sooner.
To The Immortal Soul – Poem by Muzahidul Reza
Mortal body talks to immortal soul,
O, immortal soul! O, great soul! !
I cry for you shall leave me,
And without you I have no key;
My all doors shall be close
Slowly I will be lost in these dusts,
Nothingness has surrounded
Once that was known great around;
For long I have to be at vanishing state
Yet with you have been written my fate,
Again at the time of ressurection
In me you shall take your position;
I am your cage
But you are my base,
Without you I have no existence
At your call is my presence;
Your state is mine endurance
With happiness or sadness,
I am pillarless
Standing on your branches;
Have you done well?
If yes, with you I am in heaven,
If no, with you I am in hell