Gustavus Vasa eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 100 pages of information about Gustavus Vasa.

BOOK II.

ARGUMENT.

Soliloquies of Ernestus and Harfagar in prison—­Christiern in a conversation with his peers throws further light on the rebellion of Prince Frederic in Denmark—­He employs Olaus to carry Ernestus and Harfagar, in a boat, into the sea, and there assassinate them—­Death of Olaus and Harfagar—­Ernestus is ordered by the genius of Sweden, to seek Gustavus Vasa, hero of the poem, in Dalecarlia—­Character of Admiral Norbi.

BOOK II.

    Day’s golden eye had closed, his ruddy light
    Expiring on the bosom of the night;
    And solitary twilight’s deepening shade
    In dusky robe the firmament array’d. 
    The moon, resplendent, fill’d her glittering throne,
    And tipp’d with yellow gems all ether shone. 
    The breeze was silent on the glassy deep,
    And half the world was sinking into sleep: 
    Save where the shepherd led his fleecy train
    To crop the verdure of the moon-light plain;
    Save where the warder on the turret’s height
    Trimm’d his weak lamp, and watch’d the bell of night,
    And the lone captive, in the dungeon’s gloom,
    With beating pulse look’d forward to his doom.

      Still Harfagar refused the gift of rest;
    His country’s cares lay brooding in his breast: 
    And many a gloomy pang his heart assail’d,
    But fortitude at each assault prevail’d. 
    So stands in British woods a broad-bough’d oak,
    That braved three centuries every stormy stroke;
    While howling winds the scatter’d forest rend,
    He rears his aged trunk, and scorns to bend;
    So stood, serenely stood the godlike man,
    And thus, deep musing, inwardly began.

      “Now silent night, the parent of repose,
    O’er half the earth her shadowy pinion throws. 
    Hail, sleep, restorer of the tortured mind,
    Balm of the soul, and friend to human kind! 
    The toils and tumults of our earthly scene
    Subside, and melt into thy sway serene. 
    Life’s sweetest cup, with purest blessings fraught,
    Were, without thee, a vapid joyless thought! 
    My fellow captives all thy pleasures taste;
    Their fears, their sorrows, all in sleep are past; }
    Oh! be it peaceful still, for this may be the last! }
    Now, borne in vision to those airy plains }
    Where fancy undisturb’d by reason reigns,
    Where thron’d in rainbow light she sits serene,
    And flings her sportive glories o’er the scene;
    The first tumultuous ocean wafts them o’er,
    And lands them safe upon the flowery shore. 
    This seems to see his utmost wishes crown’d,
    Rebellion spread to Sweden’s farthest bound;
    Beneath his banners the whole country flies;
    On swarming myriads, swarming

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Gustavus Vasa from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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