Fragment Of "The Castle Builder."


    To-night I'll have my friar, let me think
    About my room, I'll have it in the pink;
    It should be rich and sombre, and the moon,
    Just in its mid-life in the midst of June,
    Should look thro' four large windows and display
    Clear, but for gold-fish vases in the way,
    Their glassy diamonding on Turkish floor;
    The tapers keep aside, an hour and more,
    To see what else the moon alone can show;
    While the night-breeze doth softly let us know
    My terrace is well bower'd with oranges.
    Upon the floor the dullest spirit sees
    A guitar-ribband and a lady's glove
    Beside a crumple-leaved tale of love;
    A tambour-frame, with Venus sleeping there,
    All finish'd but some ringlets of her hair;
    A viol, bow-strings torn, cross-wise upon
    A glorious folio of Anacreon;
    A skull upon a mat of roses lying,
    Ink'd purple with a song concerning dying;
    An hour-glass on the turn, amid the trails
    Of passion-flower; just in time there sails
    A cloud across the moon, the lights bring in!
    And see what more my phantasy can win.
    It is a gorgeous room, but somewhat sad;
    The draperies are so, as tho' they had
    Been made for Cleopatra's winding-sheet;
    And opposite the stedfast eye doth meet
    A spacious looking-glass, upon whose face,
    In letters raven-sombre, you may trace
    Old "Mene, Mene, Tekel Upharsin."
    Greek busts and statuary have ever been
    Held, by the finest spirits, fitter far
    Than vase grotesque and Siamesian jar;
    Therefore 'tis sure a want of Attic taste
    That I should rather love a Gothic waste
    Of eyesight on cinque-coloured potter's clay,
    Than on the marble fairness of old Greece.
    My table-coverlits of Jason's fleece
    And black Numidian sheep-wool should be wrought,
    Gold, black, and heavy, from the Lama brought.
    My ebon sofas should delicious be
    With down from Leda's cygnet progeny.
    My pictures all Salvator's, save a few
    Of Titian's portraiture, and one, though new,
    Of Haydon's in its fresh magnificence.
    My wine, O good! 'tis here at my desire,
    And I must sit to supper with my friar.


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