Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, LINES SPOKEN BY MRS. BARTLEY AT DRURY LANE THEATRE ON THE FIRST OPENING OF THE HOUSE AFTER THE DEATH, by THOMAS CAMPBELL



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LINES SPOKEN BY MRS. BARTLEY AT DRURY LANE THEATRE ON THE FIRST OPENING OF THE HOUSE AFTER THE DEATH, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: Britons! Although our task is but to show
Last Line: To paint -- ye feel it, britons, in your hearts!
Subject(s): Charlotte Augusta, Princess (D. 1817); Mourning; Bereavement


BRITONS! although our task is but to show
The scenes and passions of fictitious wo,
Think not we come this night without a part
In that deep sorrow of the public heart,
Which like a shade hath darkened every place,
And moistened with a tear the manliest face!
The bell is scarcely hushed in Windsor's piles.
That tolled a requiem from the solemn aisles,
For her, the royal flower, low laid in dust,
That was your fairest hope, your fondest trust.
Unconscious of the doom, we dreamed, alas!
That ev'n these walls, ere many months should pass,
Which but return sad accents for her now,
Perhaps had witnessed her benignant brow,
Cheered by the voice you would have raised on high,
In bursts of British love and loyalty.
But, Britain! now thy chief, thy people mourn,
And Claremont's home of love is left forlorn: --
There, where the happiest of the happy dwelt,
The 'scutcheon glooms, and royalty hath felt
A wound that every bosom feels its own, --
The blessing of a father's heart o'erthrown --
The most beloved and most devoted bride
Torn from an agonized husband's side,
Who, "long as Memory holds her seat," shall view
That speechless, more than spoken, last adieu,
When the fixed eye long looked connubial faith,
And beamed affection in the trance of death.
Sad was the pomp that yesternight beheld,
As with the mourner's heart the anthem swelled;
While torch succeeding torch illumed each high
And bannered arch of England's chivalry.
The rich plumed canopy, the gorgeous pall,
The sacred march, and sable-vested wall, --
These were not rites of inexpressive show,
But hallowed as the types of real wo!
Daughter of England! for a nation's sighs,
A nation's heart went with thine obsequies!
And oft shall time revert a look of grief
On thine existence, beautiful and brief.
Fair spirit! send thy blessing from above
On realms where thou art canonized by love!
Give to a father's, husband's bleeding mind,
The peace that angels lend to human-kind;
To us who in thy loved remembrance feel
A sorrowing, but a soul-ennobling zeal --
A loyalty that touches all the best
And loftiest principles of England's breast!
Still may thy name speak concord from the tomb --
Still in the Muse's breath thy memory bloom!
They shall describe thy life -- thy form portray;
But all the love that mourns thee swept away,
'Tis not in language or expressive arts
To paint -- ye feel it, Britons, in your hearts!





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