"Whenever, amid bow'rs of myrtle,
Love, summer-tressed and vernal-eyed,
At morn or eve is seen to wander,
A dark-haired girl is at his side."
De La Hogue.
One morn, just as day in the far east was breaking,
Young Love, who all night had been roving about,
A charming siesta was quietly taking,
His strength, by his rambles, completely worn out.
Round his brow a wreath, woven of every flower
That springs from the hillside, or valley, was bound;
In his hand was a rose he had stol'n from some bower,
While his bow and his quiver lay near on the ground.
Wild Fancy just came from her kingdom of dreams,
The breath of the opening day to enjoy,
And to catch the warm kiss of its first golden beams
On her cheek, caught a glimpse of the slumbering boy!
With a light, noiseless step she drew near to the sleeper,
And gazed till her snowy-breast heaved a soft sigh;
Then she bade sleep's dull god bring a sounder and deeper
And heavier trance for Love's beautiful eye.
Then back to her shadowy kingdom she flow,
And called up the bright mystic forms she has there;
And filling an urn from a fountain of dew,
She bade them all straight to Love's couch-side repair.
They came, and stood round, as her hand, o'er his pillow,
From a chalice of pearl, poured its magical stream:
While his red rosy lips, that now sighed like a billow
At play with the breeze, told how sweet was his dream.
He dreamed that he sat on a shining throne, wrought
Of the purest of gold that the earth could supply,
While a trio of beautiful maids, who each brought
A gift for his shrine, in succession past by.
First Fame, with the step and the glance of a queen,
Came up, and before him bent down her proud knee,
And held up a garland, whereon played the sheen
Of the beams which insure immortality!
Next Wealth, the stern mistress of men, for whose smile
They toil like the galley slave, - brought in her hand
The fair gems of many an ocean isle,
And the diamonds of many a far off land.
And Beauty came too, with her blue, laughing eye,
Her fair flowing locks, and her soft rosy cheek,
And red lips, whose sweet smile told silently
The tale which they seemed ashamed to speak.
'Neath the shade of a palm branch a fourth one stood by,
With locks like in hue to the tresses of Night,
With a pale, pensive brow, and a dark dreamy eye,
Where the soul of sweet softness lay gleaming in light!
It was Fancy: Love gazed, and his eager eye shone
With a lustre of feeling, deep, fervent, and sweet;
And he thought it were better to give up his throne
For a place, on his knees, at the coy maiden's feet.
And from that bright hour, through calm and through storm,
Through the sunlight of summer, and winter's dark reign,
These twain have been bound by ties, tender and warm,
Which ne'er through all time shall be severed again.
And ever where Love weaves his fond witchery,
Will Fancy the aid of her brightness bestow,
And give the loved object, whatever it be,
A purer, a dearer, a heavenlier glow!