Page:The Works of Lord Byron (ed. Coleridge, Prothero) - Volume 2.djvu/506

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462
[CANTO IV.
CHILDE HAROLD’S PILGRIMAGE.

CLXXXV.

My task is done—my song hath ceased—my theme
Has died into an echo; it is fit[1]
The spell should break of this protracted dream.
The torch shall be extinguished which hath lit
My midnight lamp—and what is writ, is writ,—
Would it were worthier! but I am not now
That which I have been—and my visions flit
Less palpably before me—and the glow
Which in my Spirit dwelt is fluttering, faint, and low.


CLXXXVI.

Farewell! a word that must be, and hath been—
A sound which makes us linger;—yet—farewell![2]
Ye! who have traced the Pilgrim to the scene[3]

Which is his last—if in your memories dwell

    time, with the rock of Calpe, the shattered temples of Athens, or the gigantic fragments of Rome; but when we wish to think of this dark personification as of a thing which is, where can we so well imagine him to have his daily haunt as by the roaring of the waves? It was thus that Homer represented Achilles in his moments of ungovernable and inconsolable grief for the loss of Patroclus. It was thus he chose to depict the paternal despair of Chryseus—

    Βή δ' ἀκέων παρὰ θῖνα πολυφλοίσβοιο θαλάσσης."

    Note by Professor Wilson, ed. 1837.]

  1. Is dying in the echo—it is time
    To break the spell of this protracted dream
    And what will be the fate of this my rhyme
    May not be of my augury
    ——.—[MS. M. erased.]

  2. Fatal—and yet it shakes me not—farewell.—[MS. M.]
  3. Ye! who have traced my Pilgrim to the scene.—[MS. M.]