Louisa Stuart Costello

(1799-1870 / France)

His Indian Love to Diogo Alvarez


ON HIS DEPARTURE FROM BAHIA

When thou stoodst amidst thy countrymen
Our captive and our foe,
What voice of pity was it then
That check'd the fatal blow?

When the name of the mighty 'Man of Fire'
Re-echoed to the sky,
And our chiefs forgot their deadly ire—
Who hail'd thy victory?

What voice like the softest, sweetest note
That rings from the slender white bird's throat,
Has soothed thee so oft to rest?
And thou hast said, so tenderly,
That to sit among willow isles with me
Was to be ever blest!

Oh! have we not wander'd in silent night
When the thick dews fell from the weeping bough;
And then these eyes, like the stars, were bright—
But are wet like those mournful branches now.

Like the leafless plant that twines around
The forest tree so fair and high,
And when in that withering clasp 'tis bound,
Leaves the blighted trunk to die,—
Thy vows round my trusting heart have bound,
And now thou leav'st me to misery!



Thou wilt not return—thy words are vain!
Thou wilt cross the deep blue sea;
And some dark-eyed maid of thy native Spain
Will hold thee far from me.

The summer will come, and our willow shore
Will hear the merman sing;
But thou wilt list to his song no more
When the rocks with his music ring:

He will murmur thy falsehood to every cave—
Or will tell of thy death on the stormy wave.
Ah! no; ah! no; 'tis of mine he'll tell—
I will weep no more—farewell!—farewell!

Look from thy bark, how I follow afar;
How I scorn the winds' and the billows' war;—
I sink! the waves ring loudly my knell;
My sorrows are passing—farewell!—farewell!

Submitted: Thursday, January 01, 2004

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