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Who made me to be happy.'

To hear this maiden call on you in vain · Did that God,

For aid, and see her drage'd, and hear her scream Cried Conrade,' form thy heart for happiness, In the blood-reeking soldier's lustful arms, When Desolation royally careers

Think that there are such horrors;'that even now, Over thy wretched country? did that God

Some city flames, and haply as in Roan, Form thee for Peace when Slaughter is abroad,

Some famish d babe on his dead mother's breast When her brooks run with blood, and Rape, and Murder, | Yet hangs and pulls for food !12 woe be to those Stalk through her flaming towns ? live thou in peace, By whom the evil comes! and woe to him, .. Young man! my heart is human: I do feel

For little less his guilt, .. who dwells in peace,
For what my brethren suffer.' While he spake When every arm is needed for the strife!'
Such mingled passions character'd his face
Of fierce and terrible benevolence,

« When we had all betaken us to rest, That I did tremble as I listend to him:

Sleepless I lay, and in my mind revolved And in my heart tumultuous thoughts arose

The high-soul'd warrior's speech. Theo Madelon Of high achievements, indistinct, and wild,

Rose in remembrance; over her the grave And vast, yel such they were as made me pant

Had closed; her sorrows were noi register'd As though by some divinity possess'd.

In the rolls of Fame: but when the tears run down

The widow's cheek, shall not her cry be heard « But is there not some duly due to those

In Heaven against the oppressor? will not God We love?' said Theodore; · Is there an employ In sunder smite the unmerciful, and break More righteous than to cheer declining age,

The sceptre of the wicked ?13., thoughits like these And thus with filial tenderness repay

Possess'd my soul, till at the break of day
Parental care?'

I slept; nor did my heated brain repose
Hard is it,' Conrade cried,

Even then, for visions, sent, as I believe, « Aye, hard indeed, to part from those we love; From the Most High, arose. A high-tower'd town And I have suffer'd that severest pang.

Hemm'd in and girl with enemies, I saw, I have left an aged mother; I have left

Where Famine on a heap of carcasses, One, upon whom my heart has center'd all

Half envious of the unulterable feast, Its dearest, best, affections. Should I live

Mark'd the gorged raven clog his beak with gore. Till France shall see the blessed hour of Peace,

I turn'd me then to the besieger's camp. I shall return: my heart will be content,

And there was revelry: the loud lewd laugh My highest duties will be well discharged

Burst on mine ear, and I beheld the chiefs
And I may then be happy. There are those

Sit at their feast, and plan the work of death.
Who deem these thoughts the fancies of a mind My soul grew sick within
Strict beyond measure, and were well content,

Reproaching Heaven,... lo! from the clouds an arm If I should soften down my rigid nature

As of the avenging Angel was put forth, Even to inglorious ease, to honour me.

And from his hand a sword, like lightning, fell. But pure of heart and high of self-esteem I must be honour'd by myself: all else,

« From that night I could feel my

burthen'd soul The breath of Fame, is as the unsteady wind

Heaving beneath incumbent Deily.
Worthless.'

I sale in silence, musing on the days
So saying from his belt he took To come, unheeding and unseeing all
The encumbering sword. I held it, listening to liim, Around me, in that dreaminess of thought
And wistless what I did, half from the sheath

When every bodily sense is as it slepi,
Drew forth its glittering blade. I gazed upon it And the mind alone is wakeful. I have heard
And shuddering, as I touch'd its edge, exclaim'd, Strange voices in the evening wind; strange forms
How horrible it is with the kcen sword

Dimly discover'd throng'd the twilight air. To gore the finely-fibred human frame!

The neighbours wonder'd at the sudden change, I could not strike a lamb.

And call'd me crazed; and my dear Uncle, too,
He answer'd me,

Would sit and gaze upon me wistfully,
‘Maiden, thou hast said well. I could not strike A heaviness upon his aged brow,
A lamb, . . But when the invader's savage fury

And in his
eye such trouble, that

my

heart Spares not grey age, and mocks the infaai's shriek Sometimes misgave me. I had told him all, As it doth writhe upon his cursed lance,

The mighty future labouring in my breast, And forces to his foul embrace, the wife

But that the hour methought not yet was come. Even on her murder'd husband's gasping corse! Almighty God! I should not be a man

« At length I heard of Orleans, by the foe If I did let one weak and pitiful feeling

Wall'd in from human succour; there all thoughts, Make mine arm impotent to cleave him down.

All hopes were turnd; that bulwark once beat down, Think well of this, young Man!'10 he cried, and seized All was the invaders'. Now my troubled soul The hand of Theodore; ' think well of this,

Grew more disturb'd, and, shunning every eye, As you are human, as you hope to live

I loved to wander where the forest shade In peace, amid the dearest joys of home;

Frown'd deepest; there on mightiest deeds to brood Think well of this! you have a teoder mother, Of shadowy vastness, such as made my

heart As you do wish that she may die in peace,

Throb loud : anon I paused, and in a state As you would even to madness agonize

Of half expectance, listend to the wind.

me;

I look'd up,

« There is a fountain in the forest called

1

Aye, Chieftain, and the world The Fountain of the Fairies : 14 when a child

Shall soon believe my mission; for the Lord With a delightful wonder I have heard

Will raise up indignation, and pour out Tales of the Ellin tribe who on its banks

His wrath, and they shall perish who oppress.»17
Hold midnight revelry. An ancient oak,
The goodliest of the forest, grows beside;
Alone is stands, upon a green grass plat,

BOOK II.
By the woods bounded like some little isle.
It ever hath been deem'd their favourite tree;
They love to lie and rock upon its leaves, '5

And now beneath the horizon westering slow
And bask in moonshine. Here the Woodman leads

Had sunk the orb of day: o'er all the vale His boy, and, showing him the green-sward mark'd

A purple softness spread, save where the tree With darker circlets, says their midnight dance

Its giant shadow stretch'd, or winding stream Hath tracd the ring, and bids him spare the tree.

Mirror'd the light of Heaven, still traced distinct Fancy bad cast a spell upon the place,

When twilight dimly shrouded all beside. And made it holy; and the villagers

A grateful coolness freshen'd the calm air, Would say that never evil thing approach'd

And the hoarse grasslioppers their evening song Unpunish'd there. The strange and fearful pleasure

Sung shrill and ceaseless, 18 as the dews of night Which fill'd me by that solitary spring,

Descended. On their way the travellers wend, Ceased not in riper years; and now it woke

Cheering the road with converse, till at length Deeper delight and more mysterious awe.

They mark a cottage lamp, whose steady light

Shone through the lattice: thitherward they turn. Lonely the forest spring: a rocky hill

There came an old man forth : his thin

grey

Jocks Rises beside it, and an aged yew

Waved on the night breeze, and on his shrunk face Bursts from the rifted crag that overbrows

The characters of age were written deep. The waters; cavernd there unseen and slow

Them, louting low with rustic courtesy, And silently they well. The adder's tongue,

He welcomed in; on the white-ember'd hearth Rich with the wrinkles of its glossy green,

Heapt up fresh fuel, then with friendly care Hangs down its long lank leaves, whose wavy dip Spread out the homely board, and fill'd the bowl Just breaks the tranquil surface. Ancient woods

With the red produce of the vine that arch'd Bosom the quiet beauties of the place;

His evening seat; they of the plain repast Nor ever sound profanes it, save such sounds

Parlook, and quaffd the pure and pleasant draught. As Silence loves to hear, the passing wind, Or the low murmuring of the stream scarce heard. Strangers, your fare is homely,» said their Host; A blessed spot! oh how my soul enjoy'd

But such it is as we poor countrymen Its holy quietness, with what delight

Earn with hard toil : in faith ye are welcome to it! Escaping from mankind I hastend there

I too have borne a lance in younger days; To solitude and freedom! thitherward

And would that I were young again to meet On a spring eve I had betaken me,

These haughty English in the field of fight! And there I sate, and mark'd the deep red clouds Such as I was when on the fatal plain Gather before the wind .. the rising wind,

Of Agiocourt I met them.» Whose sudden gusts, each wilder than the last,

« Wert thou, then, Appeard to rock my senses. Soon the night

A sharer in that dreadful day's defeal?» Darken'd around, and the large rain drops fell

Exclaim'd the Bastard : « Didst thou know the Lord Heavy; anon tempestuously the gale

Of Orleans?» Howl'd o'er the wood. Methought the heavy rain

« Know him !» cried the veteran, Fell with a grateful coolness on my head,

« I saw him ere the bloody fight began And the boarse dash of waters, and the rush

Riding from rank to rank, bis beaver up, Of wiods that mingled with the forest roar,

The long lance quivering in his mighty grasp. Made a wild music. On a rock I sat;

His eye was wrathful to an enemy, The glory of the tempest fill'd my soul;

But for his countrymen it had a smile And when the thunders peald, and the long flash

Would win all hearts. Looking at thee, Sir Knight, Hung durable in heaven, and on my sight

Methinks I see him now; such was his eye,
Spread the grey forest, memory, thought, were gone, 16 Gentle in peace, and such his manly brow.»
All sense of self annihilate, I seem'd
Diffus'd into the scene.

« No tongue but speaketh honour of that name!» At length a light

Exclaimed Dunois. « Strangers and countrymen
Approach'd the spring; I saw my Uncle Claude : Alike revered the good and gallant Chief.
His grey locks dripping with the midnight storm. His vassals like a father loved their Lord;
He came, and caught me in his arms, and cried, His gales stood open to the traveller;
“My God! my child is safe!'

The pilgrim when he saw bis towers rejoiced,
I felt his words

For he had heard in other lands the fame
Pierce in my heart; my soul was overcharged; Of Orleans... And he lives a prisoner still!
I fell upon his neck and told him all;

Losing all hope because my arm so long God was within me; as I felt, 1 spake,

Hath fail'd to win his liberty!» And he believed.

He turn'd

His head away to hide the burning shame
Which tlush'd his face. « But he shall live, Dunois,»
Exclaim'd the mission's Maid; « but he shall live
To hear good tidings; hear of liberty,
Of his own liberty, by his brother's arm
Achieved in hard-fought battle. He shall live
Happy: the memory of his prison'd years 19
Shall heighten all his joys, and his

grey

hairs Go to the grave in peace.”

«I would fain live To see that day,» replied their aged host : « How would my heart leap to behold again The gallant generous chieftain! I fought by bim When all the hopes of victory were lost, And down his batter'd arms the blood stream'd fast From many a wound. Like wolves they hemm'd us in, Fierce in unhoped-for conquest : all around Our dead and dying countrymen lay heap'd; Yet still he strove;-I wonder'd at bis valour! There was not one who on that fatal day Fought bravelier.»

« Fatal was that day to France,» Exclaim'd the Bastard; « there Alençon fell, Valiant in vain; there D'Albert, whose mad pride Brought the whole ruin on. There fell Brabant, Vaudemont, and Marle, and Bar, and Faquenberg, Our noblest warriors; the determind foe Fought for revenge, not hoping victory, Desperately brave; ranks fell on ranks before them; The prisoners of that shameful day out-summ'd Their conquerors !» 30

« Yet believe not, » Bertram cried,
« That cowardice disgraced thy countrymen :
They by their leader's arrogance led on
With heedless fury, found all numbers vain,
All efforts fruitless there; and hadst thou seen,
Skilful as brave, how Henry's ready eye
Lost not a thicket, not a hillock's aid;
From his hersed bowmen how the arrows flew 31
Thick as the snow flakes and with lightning force,
Thou wouldst have known such soldiers, sueh a chief,
Could never be subdued.

But when the field
Was won, and they who had escaped the fight
Had yielded up their arms, it was foul work
To glut on the defenceless prisoners a?
The blunted sword of conquest. Girt around
I to their mercy had surrender'd me,
When lo! I heard the dreadful cry of death.
Not as amid the fray, when man met man
And in fair combat gave the mortal blow;
Here the poor captives, weaponless and bound,
Saw their stern victors draw again the sword,
And groan'd and strove in vain to free their hands,
And bade them think upon their plighted faith,
And pray'd for mercy in the name of God,
In vain: the King had bade them massacre,
And in their helpless prisoners' naked breasts
They drove the blade. Then I expected death,
And at that moment death was terrible-
For the heat of fight was over;

of home
I thought, and of my wife and little ones
In bitterness of heart. The gallant man,
To whom the chance of war had made me thrall,
Had pity, loosed my hands, and bade me fly.
It was the will of Heaven that I should live

Childless and old to think upon the past,
And wish that I had perish'd !»

The old man
Wept as he spake. « Ye may perhaps have heard
Of the hard siege so long by Roan endured.
I dwelt there, strangers; I had then a wife,
And I had children tenderly beloved,
Who I did hope should cheer me in old age
And close mine eyes. The tale of misery
May-hap were tedious, or I could relate
Much of that dreadful time.”

The Maid replied,
Anxious of that devoted town to learn.
Thus then the veteran:-

« So by Heaven preserved,
From the disastrous plain of Agincourt 23
I speeded homewards and abode in peace.
Henry as wise as brave had back to England 24
Led his victorious army;

well aware
That France was mighty, that her warlike sons,
Impatient of a foreign victor's sway,
Might rise impetuous and with multitudes
Tread down the invaders. Wisely he returnd,
For the proud barons in their private broils
Wasted the strength of France. I dwelt at home,
And, with the little I possessed content,
Lived happily. A pleasant sight it was
To see my children, as at eve I sate
Beneath the vine, come clustering round my knce,
That they might hear again the oft-told tale
Of the dangers I had past: their little eyes
Did with such anxious eagerness attend
The tale of life preserved, as made me feel
Life's value. My poor children! a hard fate
Had they! but oft and bitterly I wish
That God had to his mercy taken me
In childhood, for it is a heavy lot
To linger out old age in loneliness!

« Ah me! when war the masters of mankind,
Woe to the poor man! if he sow the field,
He shall not reap the barvest; if he see
His offspring rise around, his boding heart
Aches at the thought that they are multiplied
To the sword! Again from England the fierce foe
Rush'd on our ravaged coasts. In battle bold,
Merciless in conquest, their victorious King
Swept like the desolating tempest round.
Dambieres submits; on Caen's subjected wall
The flag of England waved. Roan still remain'd,
Embattled Roan, bulwark of Normandy;
Nor unresisted round her massy walls
Pitch'd they their camp. I need not tell Sir Knight
How oft and boldly on the invading host
We burst with fierce assault impetuous forth,
For many were the warrior Sons of Roan.25
One gallant Citizen was famed o'er all
For daring hardihood pre-eminent,
Blanchard. He, gathering round his countrymen,
With his own courage kindling every breast,
Had bade them vow before Almighty God 36
Never to yield them to the usurping foe.
Before the God of Hosts we made the vow:
And we had baftled the besieging power,
Had not the patient enemy drawn round
His strong entrenchments. From the watch-tower's top

my

What is man,

Vis mercy

In vain with fearful hearts along the Seine

That I might lose remembrance!
We strain d the eye, and every distant wave
Which in the sun-beam glitter'd fondly thought That he can hear the groan of wretchedness
The white sail of supply. Alas! no more

And feel no fleshy pang? Why did the All-Good The white sail rose upon our aching sight;

Create these warrior scourges of mankind, For guarded was the Scine, and that stern foe

These who delight in slaugliter? I did think Had made a league with Famine.27 llow

my

heart There was not on this earth a heart so hard Sunk in me when at night I carried home

Could bear a famish'd woman cry for bread, The scanly pillance of 10-morrow's meal!

And know no pily. As the outcast train You know noi, strangers! what it is to see

Drew near, relentless Henry bade his troops
The asking eye of hunger!

Force back the miserable multitude 35
Still we strove,

They drove them to the walls,-il was the depth Expecting aid; nor longer force to force,

Of winter,- we had no relief to grant. Valour to valour in ihe fight opposed,

The aged ones groan'd to our foe in vain,
But to the exasperate patience of the foe

The mother pleaded for her dying child,
Desperate endurance.28 Though with Christian zeal And they felt no remorse!»
Ursino would have pour d the balm of peace

The mission'd Maid Into our wounds, Ambition's ear, best pleased Starts from her scat-« The old and the infirm, With the war's clamour and the groan of Deatlı, The mother and her babes! --and yet no lightning Was deaf to prayer. Day after day fled on;

Blasted this man!» We heard no voice of comfort. From the walls

Ay, Lady,» Bertram cricd; Could we behold the savage Irish Kernes 29

« And when we sent the herald to implore Ruffians half-clothed, liaif-human, half-baptized, 30

- 36 on the helpless, his sieru face Come with their spoil, mingling their hideous shouts Assumed a steroer smile of callous scorn, With moan of weary tlocks, and piteous low

And he replied in mockery. On the wall Of kine sore-laden, in the mirthful camp

I stood and mark'd the miserable outcasts, Scattering abundance; while the loathliest food

And every moment thought that Henry's hear!, We prized above all price; while in our streets llard as it was, would melt. All night I stood, The dying groan of hunger, and the scream

Their deep groans came upon the midnight gale, Of famishing infants echocd, -- and we heard,

Fainter they grew, for the cold wintry wind With the strange selfishness of misery,

Blew bleak; fainter they grew, and at the last We heard and hceded not,

All was still, save that ever and anon
Thou would'st have deernil Some mother shriek d o'er her expiring child
Roan must have fallen an easy sacrifice,

The shriek of freozying anguishı.37
Young warrior, hadsı thou seen our meagre limbs

From that hour And pale and shrunken cheeks, and hollow eyes ; On all the busy turmoil of the world Yet still wc struggled nobly! Blanchard still

| gazed with siranje indifference; bearing want Spake of the savage fury of the foe,

With the sick patience of a mind worn out. Of Hartleur's wretched race cast on the world 31 Nor when the trailor yielded up our town 38 flouseless and destitute, while that fierce King Ought heeded I as through our ruind streets, . Knelt at the altar,32 and with impious prayer

Through putrid bieaps of famislid carcasses, Gave God the glory, even while the blood

Pass'd the long pomp of triumph. One keen pang That lie had shed was reeking up to Heaven.

I felt, when by that bloody king's command lle bade us think what merey they had found The gallant Blanchard died.39 Calmly be died ; Who yielded on the plain of Agincourt,

And as he bow'd beneath the axe, thank'd God And what the gallant sons of Caen, by him

That he had done bis duty. la cold blood murder d.33 Then bis scanty food

I survive, Sharing with the most wretched, he would bid us A solitary, friendless, wretched one, Dear with our miseries bravely.

knowing no joy save in the faith I fcel Thus distressid,

That I shall soon be gather'd to my sires, Lest all should perisha thus, our chiefs decreed

And soon repose, there where the wicked cease 4. Women and children, the infirm and old,

From troubling, and the weary are at rest.»
All who were useless in the work of war,
Should forth and take their fortune. Age, that makes « And happy,» cried the delegated Maid,
The joys and sorrows of the distant years

« And happy they who in that lioly faith
Like a half-remember'd dream, yet on my heart Pow meekly to the rod! A little while
Leaves deep impress'd the horrors of that hour. Shall they endure the proud man's contumely,
Then as our widow wives clung round our necks, The injustice of the great.

A little while And the deep sob of anguish interrupted

Though shelterless they feel the wintry wind, The prayer of parting, even the pious Priest

Tbc wind shall whistle o'er their turf-grown grave, As he implored his God to strengthen us,

And all be peace below. But woe to those, And told us we should meet again in Heaven,

Woe to the Mighty Ones who send abroad He groap'd and cursed in bitterness of heart 34

Their train'd assassins, and who give lo Fury That merciless man. The wretched crowd pass'd on: The flaming firebrand; these indeed shall live My wife--my children-through the gates they passid, The heroes of the wandering midstrel's song; Then the gates closed-Would I were in my grave, But they have their reward; the innocent blood

Steams up to Heaven against them. God shall licar With strangest and most unexpected aid
The widow's groan.»

Sent by high leaven. I seek the Court, and thence « I saw him,» Bertram cried, To that beleaguer'd town shall lead such force, « Henry of Agincourt, this conqueror King,

That the proud English in their fields of blood Go to his grave. The long procession past

Shall perish.» Slowly from town to town, and when I heard

«I too,» Tanneguy replied, The deep-toned dirge, aud saw the banners wave « In the field of battle once again perchance A pompous shade,4, and the high torches glare May serve my royal Master ; in his cause lu the mid-day sun a dim and gloomy light, á a

My youth adventured much, nor can my age I thought what he had been on earth who now

Find better close than in the clang of arms
Was gone to his account, and blest

my
God
To die for him whom I have lived to serve.

46 I was not such as he'»

Thou art for the Court; Son of the Chief I loved !
So spake the old man, Be wise by my experience. He who seeks
And then liis guests betook them to repose.

Court favour, ventures like the boy who leans
Over the brink of some high precipice

! To reach the o'erhanging fruit. 47 Thou seest me bere BOOK III.

A banish'd man, Dunois ! 48 so to appease
Richemont, 49 who, jealous of the royal car,

With midnight murder leagues, and down the Loire Farr dawnd thic morning, and the carly sun

Rolls the black carcase of his strangled foe. Pour'd on the latticed cot a cheerful gleam,

Now confident of strength, at the King's feet And up the travellers rose, and on their way

lle stabs the King's best friends, and then demands, Jlastened, their dangerous way, 43 througla fertile tracks 'As with a conqueror's imperious tone, The waste of war. They pass'd thic Auxerrois; The post of honour. Son of that loved Chief The autumnal rains had beaten to the earth 44

Whose death my arm avenged, 50 may

all

thy days The unreap'd harvest, from the village church

Be happy! serve thy country in the field, No even-song bell was heard, the shepherd's dog

And in the hour of

peace amid thy friends Prey'd on the scatter'd flock, for there was now

Dwell thou without ambition.» No haod to feed him, and upon the hearth

So he spake.
Where he had slumber'd at his master's feet

But when the Bastard told the wonderous tale,
The rank weed flourishd. Did they sometimes sind How interposing Heaven had its high aid
A welcome, he who welcomed them was one

Vouchsafed to France, the old man's eyes flash'd fire, Who linger'd in the place where he was born,

And rising from the bank, the stately steed For that alone was left him now to love.

That grazed beside he mounts. « Farewell, Dunois, They pass'd the Yonne, they pass'd the rapid Loire, Thou too the Delegate of Heaven, farewell! Still urging on their way with cautious speed,

I go to raise the standard ! we shall meet Shunning Auxerre, and i'ar's eipbattled wall,

At Orleans.» O'er the plain he spurr'd his steed. And Romorantin's towers.

So journcying ou, They journey on their way till Chinon's towers Fast by a spring, which welling at his feet

Rose to the distant view; imperial seat With many a winding crept along the mead,

Of Charles, for Paris with her servile sons, A Knight they saw, who there at his repast

A headstrong, mutable, ferocious race, Let the west wind play round his upgirt brow.

Bowd to the invader's yoke, since that sad hour 51 Approaching near, the Bastard recognized

When Faction o'er her streets with giant stride The gallant friend of Orleans, the brave chief

Strode terrible, and Murder and Revenge, Du Chastel; and, the mutual greeting passid,

As by the midnight torches' lurid light They on the streamlet's mossy bank reclined

They mark'd their mangled victims writhe convulsed, Beside him, and his frugal fare partook,

Laugh'd at the deep death groán. 1-fated scene! And drank the running waters.

Through many a dark age drench'd with innocent blood,

« Art thou bound And one day doom'd to know the damping guilt For the Court, Dunois ?» exclaim'd the aged knighi; Of Brissor murder'd, and the heroic wife I deem d thee far away, coop'd in the walls

Of Roland! Martyrd patriots, spirits pure, Of Orleans; a hard sicge her valiant sons

Wepe by the good ye fell! Yet still survives, Right loyally endure !»

Sown by your toil and by your blood manured,
« I left the town,

The imperishable seed; and still its roots
Dunois replied, « thinking that my prompt speed Spread, and strike deep, and yet shall it become
Might seize the hostile stores, and with fresh force That Tree beneath whose chade the Sons of Men
Re-enter. Fastolfe's better fate prevaild, 45

Shall pitch their tents in peace.
And from the field of shame my maddening horse

In Paris now
Bore me, for the barb'd arrow gored his flank.

The invader triumph'd. On an infant's head
Fatigued and faint with that day's dangerous toil, Had Bedford placed the crown of Charlemagne,
My deep wounds bleeding, vainly with wcak hand And facrious nobles bow'd the subject knee
I check'd the powerless rein. Nor aught avail'd In homage to their king, their baby Lord,
When heald at length, defeated and alone

Their cradled mighty one!
Again to enter Orleans. In Lorraine

« Beloved of Ileaven,» I sought to raisc ucw powers, and now returnd So spake the Son of Orleans as they pass'd,

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