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No female threats could make his ears afraid :
He knew the signs of a consenting maid.
Her fragrant rose-complexion'd neck he press'd
With clinging lips, love thrilling in his breast:
Then whisper'd: "Oh! thou wonder of this earth!—
Pity my love, and listen to my prayer.—
Priestess of Venus, Venus' rites employ :-
Me Venus' self, commissions now to thee.
Hast thou of that Arcadian virgin read?
How Atalanta shunn'd Milanion's bed,
A maiden vow'd? But angry Venus tore
Her heart with love, for him she scorn'd before.
Then be persuaded, sweet! and fear to prove
Th' indignant anger of the queen of love.—”

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His words sow'd love her thoughts bewilder'd stray'd.
Speechless the virgin stood, with downcast eye,
And veil'd her cheek that glow'd with modesty.
With tip-toe step she lightly paced the ground,
And bashful clipp'd her folded mantle round.
Signs of soft yielding :-

Already does her thrilling bosom prove
The bitter-sweet, voluptuous stings of love.

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She views Leander with entranced gaze:
Then on the ground she bends her fringed eyes;
His look dilates in frenzied ecstasies:
Still on her smooth-complexion'd neck, that turns
With sweeping bend, his glance insatiate burns :
Till Hero thus with softest accent said,

"Whence were these ways of soft delusion known? Who to my country led thee o'er the main?

Ah me!—but all thou say'st is said in vain :

How should an unknown wanderer share my love?


But tell-conceal them not-thy country and thy


Mine is not hid from thee; on rumour flown,
The name of Hero is not quite unknown.
A lofty tower my mansion; where around
Roars the deep ocean with eternal sound;
The spiry walls of Sestos rise behind;
There, by my parents' stern device confin'd,

I, with a single damsel, lonely dwell,

Where rolls the neighbouring sea with billowy swell On the steep shore: no friends my hours engage, No youthful playmates of congenial age :

In waking daylight, or in nightly sleep,

My ears are fill'd with winds, and voices of the deep." She veil'd again her rosy cheek.

Sighing from his inmost soul Leander spake

Words of close wiles: “Oh, virgin! for thy sake
Will I the wild waves cross,-

For in a city near thy own I dwell :

Abydos fronts thy Sestian citadel.

But let a torch, from that high tower display'd,
Shine opposite athwart the midnight shade:
The light discern'd shall guide me straight before
To the sweet haven of thy country's shore;

Myself the ship of love, I'll hail from far
The torch of Hero, my directing star;






But, dear one! watch, lest blasts should quench the fire,
My gleaming guide of life, and darkling I expire.
Know, that Leander is the name I bear;

The spouse of Hero with the flower-wreath'd hair.—”
Thus fix'd their night-long wedlock's wakeful hour,
They part reluctant: Hero sought her tower;
The youth pass'd darkling forth; but lest he stray,
Noted whence high should blaze the signal ray.
He swimming through th' unfathomable main,
In populous Abydos rose again.

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Night came, and cowl'd in sable mantle, ran
And shook deep slumber o'er the eyes of man,
All but Leander's: he long tarrying stood
Where the shores echoed to the roaring flood;
And looked, impatient, till the angel sign
Of his bright wedlock should, discover'd, shine.

But when with wary eyes th' expectant maid
The rayless gloom of gathering night survey'd,
She show'd the torch on high; Leander gazed:
As the torch kindled, so his passion blazed:
Hastening he rush'd; but, lingering on the shore,
The maddening waves with hoarse reechoing roar
Burst on his ear: he shudder'd as they roll'd,
Then, in high courage, thus his heart consoled :
"Dreadful is love: ungentle is the sea;
Mere waters these; a burning fire is he;

Burn high my heart: the flowing surges brave;

Love calls thee on; then wherefore heed the wave?



His beauteous limbs disrobing, while he said,

He roll'd his folded vestments round his head;
Sprang from the shore at one adventurous leap,
And cast his body midst the rolling deep.
Straight towards the gleaming torch he clave the sea;
The ship, the rower, and the helmsman he.

The damsel

Screen'd with her robe the flame: till now, nigh spent,
Leander climb'd the harbouring shore's ascent.
She on the threshold met, and silent round
Her panting spouse her arms embracing wound.
Foam drizzling from his locks, within the tower
She led him to her secret virgin bower,

Deck'd for a bride: with smoothing hand she skims
The clinging brine-drops from his trickling limbs ;
With rosy-fragrant oils his body laves,

And drowns in sweets the briny-breathing waves:
On high-heap'd couch, then, breathless as he lies,
Entwines around him, and enamour'd cries:
"My husband! great thy sufferings; the salt brine
Of bitter odour has enough been thine,
And roarings of the sea: take now thy rest,
And dry thy reeking toils upon my breast.”
Swift at the word he loosed her virgin zone.

Night o'er the scene adorning darkness shed;
Nor e'er the morning in the well-known bed

Beheld the spouse Leander: he again
To opposite Abydos cross'd the main;
With oaring arms the severing billows drove,
And, still with bliss unsated, breathed of love.
So they their strong impelling love conceal'd.

But long they lived not, soon their bliss was o'er, And marriage-rite, that roam'd from shore to shore. For when the winter, with its icy sweep,

In roaring storm upturn'd the whirlpool deep,
Strong blew the chilling hurricanes around,
Lash'd the broad sea, and heaved the gulfs profound.
The sailor dreads the winter ocean's roar,

And runs his bulging bark upon the creeking shore:
But thee, Leander! strong of heart! the main,
With all its horrors, would deter in vain.

"Twas night; when wintry blasts thick-gathering


In darted whirlwind rushing on the shore:
Leander, hopeful of his wonted bride,

Was borne aloft upon the sounding tide.
Wave roll'd on wave: in heaps the waters stood;
Sea clash'd with air; and howling o'er the flood
From every point the warring winds were driven,
And the loud deeps dash'd roaring to the heaven,
Leander struggled with the whirlpool main,
And oft to sea-sprung Venus cried in vain,
And him, the godhead of the watery reign.
None succouring hasten'd to the lover's call,
Nor love could conquer fate, though conquering all.
'Gainst his opposing breast, in rushing heaps,
Burst with swift shock th' accumulated deeps:

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