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Henry Kirke White (Генри Керк Уайт)


I. 1.

Many there be, who, through the vale of life,
With velvet pace, unnoticed, softly go,
While jarring discord's inharmonious strife
Awakes them not to woe.
By them unheeded, carking care,
Green-eyed grief and dull despair;
Smoothly they pursue their way,
With even tenor and with equal breath,
Alike through cloudy and through sunny day,
Then sink in peace to death.

II. 1.

But, ah! a few there be whom griefs devour,
And weeping woe, and disappointment keen,
Repining penury, and sorrow sour,
And self-consuming spleen.
And these are Genius' favourites: these
Know the thought-throned mind to please,
And from her fleshy seat to draw
To realms where Fancy's golden orbits roll,
Disdaining all but 'wildering rapture's law,
The captivated soul.

III. 1.

Genius, from thy starry throne,
High above the burning zone,
In radiant robe of light array'd,
Oh! hear the plaint by thy sad favourite made,
His melancholy moan.
He tells of scorn, he tells of broken vows,
Of sleepless nights, of anguish-ridden days,
Pangs that his sensibility uprouse
To curse his being and his thirst for praise.
Thou gavest to him with treble force to feel
The sting of keen neglect, the rich man's scorn,
And what o'er all does in his soul preside
Predominant, and tempers him to steel,
His high indignant pride.

I. 2.

Lament not ye, who humbly steal through life.
That Genius visits not your lowly shed;
For, ah, what woes and sorrows ever rife
Distract his hapless head!
For him awaits no balmy sleep,
He wakes all night, and wakes to weep;
Or by his lonely lamp he sits
At solemn midnight, when the peasant sleeps,
In feverish study, and in moody fits
His mournful vigils keeps.

II. 2.

And, oh! for what consumes his watchful oil?
For what does thus he waste life's fleeting breath?
'T is for neglect and penury he doth toil,
'Tis for untimely death.
Lo! where dejected pale he lies,
Despair depicted in his eyes,
He feels the vital flame decrease,
He sees the grave wide yawning for its prey,
Without a friend to soothe his soul to peace,
And cheer the expiring ray.

III. 2.

By Sulmo's bard of mournful fame,
By gentle Otway's magic name,
By him, the youth, who smiled at death,
And rashly dared to stop his vital breath,
Will I thy pangs proclaim;
For still to misery closely thou'rt allied,
Though gaudy pageants glitter by thy side,
And far resounding Fame.
What though to thee the dazzled millions bow,
And to thy posthumous merit bend them low;
Though unto thee the monarch looks with awe,
And thou at thy flash'd car dost nations draw,
Yet, ah! unseen behind thee fly
Corroding Anguish, soul-subduing Pain,
And Discontent that clouds the fairest sky,
A melancholy train.

Yes, Genius, thee a thousand cares await,
Mocking thy derided state;
Thee chill Adversity will still attend,
Before whose face flies fast the summer's friend
And leaves thee all forlorn;
While leaden Ignorance rears her head and laughs,
And fat Stupidity shakes his jolly sides,
And while the cup of affluence he quaffs
With bee-eyed Wisdom, Genius derides,
Who toils, and every hardship doth outbrave,
To gain the meed of praise when he is mouldering in his grave.

Henry Kirke White's other poems:
  1. Lines Supposed to Be Spoken by a Lover at the Grave of His Mistress
  2. On Being Confined to School One Pleasant Morning in Spring
  3. The Prostitute
  4. The Trent
  5. Canzonet

Poems of another poets with the same name (Стихотворения других поэтов с таким же названием):

  • William McGonagall (Уильям Макгонаголл) Genius ("What is genius?")
  • Thomas Aird (Томас Эрд) Genius ("Eye of the brain and heart")
  • Lucy Montgomery (Люси Монтгомери) Genius ("A hundred generations have gone into its making")
  • Mark Twain (Марк Твен) Genius ("Genius, like gold and precious stones")

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