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ELOISA TO ABELARD.

The harmony of numbers in this poem is very fine.

It is rather drawn out to too tedious a length, altho' the pafsions vary with great judgement. It may be considered as superior to any thing in the epistotary way; and the many translations which have been made of it into the modern languages, are, in some measure, a proof of this.

N these deep solitudes and awful cells,

Where heav'nly-pensive contemplation dwells,
And ever-musing melancholy reigns ;
What means this tumult in a vestal's veins ?
Why rove my thoughts beyond this last retreat?
Why feels my heart its long-forgotten heat?
Yet, yet I love !-From Abelard it came,
And Eloïsa yet must kiss the name.

Dear, fatal name! rest ever unreveal'd,
Nor pass these lips in holy filence feal'd:
Hide it, my heart, within that close difguise,
Where, mix'd with God's, his lov'd idea lies :
O write it not, my hand--the name appears
Already written-wash it out, my tears !
In vain loft Eloïsa weeps and prays,
Her heart still dictates, and her hand obeys.

Relentless walls ! whose darksome round contains Repentant fighs, and voluntary pains:

Ye

Ye rugged rocks! which holy knees have worn;
Ye grots and caverns, shaggʻd with horrid thorn!
Shrines! where their vigils pale-ey'd virgins keep,
And pitying faints, whefe ftatues learn to weep!
Tho'cold like you, unmov’d and filent grown,
I have not yet forgot myself to fone.
All is not Heav’n’s, while Abelard has part,
Still rebel Nature holds out half my heart;
Nor pray’rs, nor fafts, its stubborn pulse restrain,
Nor tears, for ages taught to flow in vain.

Soon as thy letters, trembling, I unclose,
That well-known name awakens all my woes.
Oh name for ever sad! for ever dear!
Still breath'd in sighs, still usher'd with a tear,
I tremble, too, where-e'er my own I find,
Some dire misfortune follows close behind.
Line after line my gushing eyes o'erflow,
Led thro' a sad variety of woe;
Now warm in love, now with’ring in my bloom,
Loft in a convent's folitary gloom!
There stern Religion quench'd th' unwilling flame,
There dy'd the best of pasīions, Love and Fame.

Yet write, oh write me all, that I may join
Griefs to thy griefs, and echo fighs to thine.
Nor foes nor fortune take this pow'r away;
And is my Abelard less kind than they?
Tears still are mine, and those I need not spare,
Love but demands what else were shed in pray'r ;
No happier task these faded eyes pursue ;
To read and weep is all they now can do.

Then

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Then share thy pain, allow that sad relief; Ah, more than Mare it, give me all thy grief. Heav'n first taught letters for some wretch's aid, Some banith'd lover, or some captive maid ; They live, they speak, they breathe what love inspires, Warm from the soul, and faithful to its fires, The virgin's wish without her fears impart, Excuse the blush, and pour out all the heart; Speed the soft intercourse from soul to soul, And waft a figh from Indus to the Pole. Thou know'ft how guiltless first I met thy flame, When Love approach'd me under Friendship’s name; My fancy form’d thee of angelic kind, Some emanation of th' All-beauteous Mind. Those smiling eyes, attemp’ring ev'ry ray, Shone sweetly lambent with celestial day. Guiltless I gaz'd; Heav'n listen’d while you sung; And truths divine came mended from that tongue. From lips like those what precept fail'd to move? Too foon they taught me 'twas no sin to love : Back thro' the paths of pleasing sense I ran, Nor wilh'd an Angel, whom I lov'd a Man. Dim and remote the joys of saints I fee; Nor envy them that Heav'n I lose for thee.

How oft, when press'd to marriage, have I said, Curse on all laws but those which love has made ! Love, free as air, at sight of human ties, Spreads his light wings, and in a moment flies. Let wealth, let honour, wait the wedded dame, August her deed, and sacred be her fame; Vol. I.

F

Before

Before true passion all those views remove,
Fame, wealth, and honour! what are you to love?
The jealous god, when we prophane his fires,
Those restless passions in revenge inspires,
And bids them make mistaken mortals groan,
Who seek in love for aught but love alone.
Should at

my

feet the world's great master fall,
Himself, his throne, his world, I'd scorn 'em all;
Not Cæsar's empress would I deign to prove;
No, make me mistress to the man I love.
If there be yet' another name more free,
More fond than mistress, make me that to thee!
Oh! happy state, when fouls each other draw,
When love is liberty, and nature law;
All then is full, poffefling, and possess’d,
No craving void left aching in the breast :
Ev'n thought meets thought, ere from the lips it part,
And each warm wish springs mutual from the heart.
This sure is bliss (if bliss on earth there be)
And once the lot of Abelard and me.

Alas how chang’d! what sudden horrors rise !
A naked lover bound and bleeding lies!
Where, where was Eloïse ? her voice, her hand,
Her ponyard had oppos'd the dire command.
Barbarian, fay! that bloody ftroke restrain;
The crime was common, common be the pain.
I can no more ; by Mame, by rage suppress’d,
Let tears and burning blushes speak the rest.

Canft thou forget that fad, that folemn day,
When victims at yon altar's foot we lay ?

Canít

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