The Golden Vase
Words made of music, glances which could speak,
And sighs that rose like incense from the heart
These an reflected in love's sacred gifts.
Even as a mirror shows the form before it.
See, how she hangs upon that golden vase!
As if each flower it holds were a sweet thought,
Or the remembrance of a joy long past.
On which the heart will lean as for support.
That It fall not, and break. Her hair is dressed
With flowers, which speak of all that's in her mind
One rose she wears upon her temple, 'tis
To show she hath one love , the stalk is hid
By a dark glossy ringlet, this doth say
None shall discover where that passion sprang
Twined with her braided tresses you may see
The pale Cameeni, which though fair at night
Sweetens the earth, its bed of death, by morn
Is not this meant to say her hopes have been
Like that ill-fated flower ? their chain of life
Too short, and the first link too near the last
There is a mournful stillness in her eye.
Which tells, with too much eloquence, alas!
What grief is preying on her heart: — it brings
A thought of the lone moon when nothing breaks
The silence of her reign, and to the poet's eye
She melancholy seems, though beautiful!
There are no smiles upon that lady's lip
Sparkling like sunbeams on a ruby rare,
And he who gazes on her cheek, may deem
That its rich hue is lent unto the rose
Which blushes on her silver blow Her arm
So white, so delicate, so gently twined
Around the golden neck of that bright vase
Looks as 'twere made of moonlight Has that arm
Not oft' encircled what it loved to clasp?
O gaze upon it longer still! it seems
As if it would invite young love to rest
His head even there, and slumber if he can
That vase whose happiness might make us burn
Is fond affection's token; 'tis the gift
Of one to whom her heart is given in change
And he hath left the bower, and beauty's side.
Her smiles, and tears, her soft persuasive voice,
That heavenly melody of whioh his heart
Dreamed in the spring-time of his youth.
These he hath left for war's blood-reddened field,
For horrid sights, and scenes of waste and woe;
The hamlet desolate, the wall o'erthrown,
The city sacked, the hostile town besieged;
The hoarse breath of the trumpet , the war cry
Of armies rushing to the charge , the neigh
Of steeds caparisoned with gold and purple,
The moan of soldiers dying gasp by gasp,
The howl of midnight hungry wolves, which feast
Upon th' uncharnel'd dead; and the shrill scream
Of revenous vultures warring o'er their prey.
How do men leave beloved hearts, to pine
In wretchedness unutterably sad.
With no companions in their solitude
But thoughts as dark and dismal as despair?
Oh' when our country writhes in galling chains.
When her proud masters scourge her as a dog,
If her wild cry be borne upon the gale.
Our bosoms at thd melancholy sound
Should swell, and we should rush to her relief.
Like sons, at an unhappy parent's wail!
And when we know the flash of patriot swords
Is unto spirits longing to be free.
Like Hope's returning light, we should not pause
Till every tyrant who on us hath trod
Lies humbled at our feet, or till we find
Graves, which may truly say thus much for us —
Here sleep the brave who loved their country well!
The Moslem is come down to spoil the land
Which every god hath blest. For such a soil
So rich, so clad with beauty, who would not
Unlock his veins, and pour their treasure forth
The Hindoo hath marched forward to repel
The lawless plunderer of his holy shrines.
The savage, rude disturber of his peace,
And with that lady of his heart remains
The vase o'er which she hangs. How long we gaze
Upon the sacred pledge of youthful love.
Hoping its joys may be our own again!
Alas, such hopes too oft' are only dreams ! —
See — a young minstrel stands before her there,
But she regards him not! — 'tis said that grief
Hath been by music charmed away, and sooth
It is a potent spell. Her hand she waves
As if to try the power of magic sounds
In breaking sorrow's chain; and hark! he flings
Delicious strains upon her listening ear.
Those flowers are blest, are doubly blest
When two such eyes as thine,
Of all created stars the best
On them so brightly shine:
Were I a flower for such sweet rest
What rapture would be mine!
I would be blest, be doubly blest
By those bright eyes of thine.
That golden vase has golden lot.
When such an arm as thine.
Whose peer the goodly world has not
Doth round it gently twine.
Were I that vase-forgive the thought!
My bliss would be divine,
And I would bless my golden lot
For that soft arm of thine.
Scarce had he ceased, when with enquiring eye
She scanned his face, and sure his voice to her
Is as familiar as the cuckoo's note
Unto the ear of spring; she saw his breast
Rising with wild emotion; her heart's beat
Now became loud and quick, as if it sought
to know his feelings, and would fain have rushed
Forth from imprisonment to clear its doubts.
Her radiant eye upon his finger glanced,
And the gem there waxed starry in its ray.
She knew the ring, 'twas once her own ; her tears
Came gathering fast for joy 'Tis he! 'tis he!
Her lip is pressed to his for whom she lives.
Her arm entwines not now the vase's neck.
But taken from the gift, it fondly clings
Like a sweet tendril to the giver.