THE CAPTIVE DOVE
WEEP NOT TOO MUCH
THE CAPTIVE DOVE
Poor restless dove, I pity thee;
And when I hear thy plaintive moan,
I mourn for thy captivity,
And in thy woes forget mine own.
To see thee stand prepared to fly,
And flap those useless wings of thine,
And gaze into the distant sky,
Would melt a harder heart than mine.
In vain..in vain! Thou canst not rise..
Thy prison roof confines thee there
Its slender wires delude thine eyes,
And quench thy longings with despair.
Oh, thou wert made to wander free
In sunny mead and shady grove,
And, far beyond the rolling sea,
In distant climes, at will to rove!..
Yet, hadst thou but one gentle mate
Thy little drooping heart to cheer,
And share with thee thy captive state,
Thou couldst be happy even there.
Yes, even there, if, listening by,
One faithful dear companion stood,
While gazing on her full bright eye,
Thou mightst forget thy native wood.
But thou, poor solitary dove,
Must make, unheard, thy joyless moan
The heart, that Nature formed to love,
Must pine, neglected, and alone...
Farewell to thee!.. but not farewell
To all my fondest thoughts of thee..
Within my heart they still shall dwell,
And they shall cheer and comfort me.
O, beautiful, and full of grace!..
If thou hadst never met mine eye,
I had not dreamed a living face
Could fancied charms so far outvie.
If I may ne'er behold again
That form and face so dear to me,
Nor hear thy voice, still would I fain
Preserve, for aye, their memory.
That voice, the magic of whose tone
Can wake an echo in my breast,
Creating feelings that, alone..
Can make my tranced spirit blest.
That laughing eye, whose sunny beam
My memory would not cherish less..
And oh, that smile! whose joyous gleam
Nor mortal language can express.
Adieu, but let me cherish, still..
The hope with which I cannot part.
Contempt may wound, and coldness chill,
But still it lingers in my heart.
And who can tell but Heaven, at last..
May answer all my thousand prayers,
And bid the future pay the past
With joy for anguish, smiles for tears?...
Oh, weep not, love!.. each tear that springs
In those dear eyes of thine,
To me a keener suffering brings,
Than if they flowed from mine..
And do not droop! however drear
The fate awaiting thee..
For my sake combat pain and care,
And cherish life for me!..
I do not fear thy love will fail,
Thy faith is true, I know..
But, oh, my love! thy strength is frail
For such a life of woe.
Were't not for this, I well could trace
(Though banished long from thee,)
Life's rugged path, and boldly face
The storms that threaten me.
Fear not for me.. I've steeled
Sorrow and strife to greet,
Joy with my love I leave behind,
Care with my friends I meet.
A mother's sad reproachful eye,
A father's scowling brow..
But he may frown and she may sigh..
I will not break my vow!
I love my mother, I revere
My sire, but fear not me..
Believe that Death alone can tear
This faithful heart from thee.
WEEP NOT TOO MUCH
Weep not too much, my darling..
Sigh not too oft for me,
Say not the face of Nature
Has lost its charm for thee.
I have enough of anguish
In my own breast alone
Thou canst not ease the burden, Love..
By adding still thine own.
I know the faith and fervour
Of that true heart of thine..
But I would have it hopeful
As thou wouldst render mine.
At night, when I lie waking,
More soothing it will be..
To say 'She slumbers calmly now,'
Than say 'She weeps for me.'
When through the prison grating
The holy moonbeams shine,
And I am wildlylonging
To see the orb divine..
Not crossed, deformed, and sullied
By those relentless bars
That will not showthe crescent moon,
And scarce the twinkling stars..
It is my only comfort
To think, that unto thee
The sight is not forbidden..
The face of heaven is free.
If I could think Zerona
Is gazing upward now ..
Is gazing with a tearless eye
A calm unruffled brow..
That moon upon her spirit
Sheds sweet, celestial balm..
The thought, like Angel's whisper,
My misery would calm.
And when, at early morning,
A faint flush comes to me,
Reflected from those glowing skies
I almost weep to see..
Or when I catch the murmur
Of gently swaying trees,
Or hear the louder swelling
Of the soul-inspiring
And pant to feel its freshness
Upon my burning brow,
Or sigh to see the twinkling leaf,
And watch the waving bough..
If, from these fruitless yearnings
Thou wouldst deliver me,
Say that the charms of Nature
Are lovely still to thee..
While I am thus repining,
O! let me but believe,
'These pleasures are not lost to her,'
And I will cease to grieve.
O, scorn not Nature's bounties!
My soul partakes with thee.
Drink bliss from all her fountains,
Drink for thyself and me!..
Say not, 'My soul is buried
In dungeon gloom with thine'..
But say, 'His heart is here with me
His spirit drinkswith mine'..
We know where deepest lies the snow,
And where the frost-winds keenest blow,
O'er every mountain's brow..
We long have known and learnt to bear
The wandering outlaw's toil and care,
But where we late were hunted, there
Our foes are hunted now.
We have their princely homes, and they
To our wild haunts are chased away,
Dark woods, and desert caves.
And we can range from hill to hill,
And chase our vanquished victors still;
Small respite will they find until
They slumber in their graves.
But I would rather be the hare,
That crouching in its sheltered lair
Must start at every sound..
That forced from cornfields waving wide
Is driven to seek the bare hillside,
Or in the tangled copse to hide,
Than be the hunter's hound.