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Page 67 - Clear, placid Leman ! thy contrasted lake, With the wild world I dwelt in, is a thing Which warns me, with its stillness, to forsake Earth's troubled waters for a purer spring. This quiet sail is as a noiseless wing To waft me from distraction ; once I loved Torn ocean's roar, but thy soft murmuring Sounds sweet as if a sister's voice reproved, That I with stern delights should e'er have been so moved.
Page 69 - And storm, and darkness, ye are wondrous strong, Yet lovely in your strength, as is the light Of a dark eye in woman! Far along, From peak to peak, the rattling crags among Leaps the live thunder! Not from one lone cloud, But every mountain now hath found a tongue, And Jura answers, through her misty shroud, Back to the joyous Alps, who call to her aloud!
Page 38 - After laying down my pen, I took several turns in a berceau, or covered walk of acacias, which commands a prospect of the country, the lake, and the mountains. The air was temperate, the sky was serene, the silver orb of the moon was reflected from the waters, and all nature was silent.
Page 38 - It was on the day, or rather night, of the 27th of June 1787, between the hours of eleven and twelve, that I wrote the last lines of the last page, in a summer-house in my garden. After laying down my pen, I took several turns in a berceau, or covered walk of acacias, which commands a prospect of the country, the lake, and the mountains.
Page 41 - A double dungeon wall and wave Have made and like a living grave. Below the surface of the lake The dark vault lies wherein we lay...
Page 43 - And then there was a little isle, Which in my very face did smile. The only one in view; A small green isle, it seem'd no more, Scarce broader than my dungeon floor, But in it there were three tall trees, And o'er it blew the mountain breezy. And by it there were waters flowing, And on it there were young flowers growing, Of gentle breath and hue.
Page 74 - How beautiful this night ! the balmiest sigh, Which vernal zephyrs breathe in evening's ear, Were discord to the speaking quietude That wraps this moveless scene. Heaven's ebon vault, Studded with stars unutterably bright, Through which the moon's unclouded grandeur rolls, Seems like a canopy which love has spread To curtain her sleeping world.
Page 55 - ... earth ? When shall I those scenes of affection explore, Our forests, our fountains, Our hamlets, our mountains, With the pride of our mountains, the maid I adore ? O, when shall I dance on the daisy-white mead, In the shade of an elm, to the sound of the reed ? When shall I return to that lowly retreat, Where all my fond objects of tenderness meet, The lambs and the heifers that follow my call, My father, my mother, My sister, my brother, And dear Isabella, the joy of them all ? O, when shall...
Page 69 - And this is in the night. Most glorious night ! Thou wert not sent for slumber ! let me be A sharer in thy fierce and far delight, A portion of the tempest and of thee ! How the lit lake shines a phosphoric sea, And the big rain comes dancing to the earth ! And now again 'tis black, and now the glee Of the loud hills shakes with its mountain-mirth, As if they did rejoice o'er a young earthquake's birth.