Текст оригинала на английском языке
No eye beheld when William plunged Young Edmund in the stream, No human ear but William's heard Young Edmund's drowning scream. Submissive all the vassals own'd The murderer for their Lord, And he, the rightful heir, possessed The house of Erlingford. The ancient house of Erlingford Stood midst a fair domain, And Severn's ample waters near Roll'd through the fertile plain. And often the way-faring man Would love to linger there, Forgetful of his onward road To gaze on scenes so fair. But never could Lord William dare To gaze on Severn's stream; In every wind that swept its waves He heard young Edmund scream. In vain at midnight's silent hour Sleep closed the murderer's eyes, In every dream the murderer saw Young Edmund's form arise. In vain by restless conscience driven Lord William left his home, Far from the scenes that saw his guilt, In pilgrimage to roam. To other climes the pilgrim fled, But could not fly despair, He sought his home again, but peace Was still a stranger there. Each hour was tedious long, yet swift The months appear'd to roll; And now the day return'd that shook With terror William's soul. A day that William never felt Return without dismay, For well had conscience kalendered Young Edmund's dying day. A fearful day was that! the rains Fell fast, with tempest roar, And the swoln tide of Severn spread Far on the level shore. In vain Lord William sought the feast In vain he quaff'd the bowl, And strove with noisy mirth to drown The anguish of his soul. The tempest as its sudden swell In gusty howlings came, With cold and death-like feelings seem'd To thrill his shuddering frame. Reluctant now, as night came on, His lonely couch he prest, And wearied out, he sunk to sleep, To sleep, but not to rest. Beside that couch his brother's form Lord Edmund seem'd to stand, Such and so pale as when in death He grasp'd his brother's hand; Such and so pale his face as when With faint and faltering tongue, To William's care, a dying charge He left his orphan son. 'I bade thee with a father's love My orphan Edmund guard-- Well William hast thou kept thy charge! Now take thy due reward.' He started up, each limb convuls'd With agonizing fear, He only heard the storm of night-- 'Twas music to his ear. When lo! the voice of loud alarm His inmost soul appals, What ho! Lord William rise in haste! The water saps thy walls! He rose in haste, beneath the walls He saw the flood appear, It hemm'd him round, 'twas midnight now, No human aid was near. He heard the shout of joy, for now A boat approach'd the wall, And eager to the welcome aid They crowd for safety all. My boat is small, the boatman cried, This dangerous haste forbear! Wait other aid, this little bark But one from hence can bear. Lord William leap'd into the boat, Haste--haste to yonder shore! And ample wealth shall well reward, Ply swift and strong the oar. The boatman plied the oar, the boat Went light along the stream, Sudden Lord William heard a cry Like Edmund's drowning scream. The boatman paus'd, methought I heard A child's distressful cry! 'Twas but the howling wind of night Lord William made reply. Haste haste--ply swift and strong the oar! Haste haste across the stream! Again Lord William heard a cry Like Edmund's drowning scream. I heard a child's distressful scream The boatman cried again. Nay hasten on--the night is dark-- And we should search in vain. Oh God! Lord William dost thou know How dreadful 'tis to die? And can'st thou without pity hear A child's expiring cry? How horrible it is to sink Beneath the chilly stream, To stretch the powerless arms in vain, In vain for help to scream? The shriek again was heard. It came More deep, more piercing loud, That instant o'er the flood the moon Shone through a broken cloud. And near them they beheld a child, Upon a crag he stood, A little crag, and all around Was spread the rising flood. The boatman plied the oar, the boat Approach'd his resting place, The moon-beam shone upon the child And show'd how pale his face. Now reach thine hand! the boatman cried Lord William reach and save! The child stretch'd forth his little hands To grasp the hand he gave. Then William shriek'd; the hand he touch'd Was cold and damp and dead! He felt young Edmund in his arms A heavier weight than lead. The boat sunk down, the murderer sunk Beneath the avenging stream; He rose, he scream'd, no human ear Heard William's drowning scream.
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