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Sweet was their death — with them to die was rife
Hell ! *
* With the Arabians there is a medium between Heaven and Hell, where men suffer no punishment, but yet do not attain that tranquil and even happiness which they suppose to be characteristic of heavenly enjoyment.
Un no rompido sueno --
De odio de esperanza - de rezelo. - Luis Ponce de Leon. Sorrow is not excluded from “ Al Aaraaf,” but it is that sorrow which the live ing love to cherish for the dead, and which, in some minds, resembles the delirium of opium. The passionate excitement of Love and the buoyancy of spirit attendant upon intoxication are its less holy pleasures – the price of which, to those souls who make choice of “ Al Aaraaf” as the residence after life, is final death and annihilation.
† There be tears of perfect moan
Wept for thee in Helicon. - Milton.
"Ianthe, dearest, see! how dim that ray! How lovely 't is to look so far away! She seem'd not thus upon that autumn eve I left her gorgeous halls nor mourned to leave. That eve - that eve
I should remember well The sun-ray dropp'd, in Lemnos, with a spell On th’ Arabesque carving of a gilded hall Wherein I sate, and on the draperied wall And on my eyelids -oh the heavy light! How drowsily it weigh'd them into night!
On flowers, before, and mist, and love they ran With Persian Saadi in his Gulistan : But oh that light !- I slumber'd - Death, the while, Stole o'er my senses in that lovely isle So softly that no single silken hair Awoke that slept — or knew that he was there. “The last spot of Earth's orb I trod upon
Was a proud temple call'd the Parthenon * More beauty clung around her column'd wall Than ev'n thy glowing bosom beats withal,t And when old Time my wing did disenthral Thence sprang I - as the eagle from his tower, And years I left behind me in an hour. What time upon her airy bounds I hung One half the garden of her globe was flung Unrolling as a chart unto my view Tenantless cities of the desert too ! Ianthe, beauty crowded on me then, And half I wish'd to be again of men.” “My Angelo! and why of them to be ? A brighter dwelling place is here for theeAnd greener fields than in yon world above, And woman's loveliness - and passionate love."
* It was entire in 1687 — the most elevated spot in Athens.
† Shadowing more beauty in their airy brows
'But, list, Ianthel when the air so soft
“ We came and to thy Earth — but not to us
for pinion. — Milton.
When first Al Aaraaf knew her course to be
TO THE RIVER
AIR river! in thy bright, clear flow
Of crystal, wandering water,
the unhidden heart
In old Alberto's daughter;
Which glistens then, and trembles
Her worshipper resembles ;
Her image deeply lies —
Of her soul-searching eyes.