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Page:The Works of Lord Byron (ed. Coleridge, Prothero) - Volume 1.djvu/535

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491
THE WALTZ.

The budding sprouts of those that you shall wear,
With added ornaments around them rolled
Of native brass, or law-awarded gold;
To You, ye Matrons, ever on the watch
To mar a son's, or make a daughter's match;100
To You, ye children of—whom chance accords—
Always the Ladies, and sometimes their Lords;
To You, ye single gentlemen, who seek
Torments for life, or pleasures for a week;
As Love or Hymen your endeavours guide,
To gain your own, or snatch another's bride;—
To one and all the lovely Stranger came,
And every Ball-room echoes with her name.


Endearing Waltz!—to thy more melting tune
Bow Irish Jig, and ancient Rigadoon.[1]110
Scotch reels, avaunt! and Country-dance forego
Your future claims to each fantastic toe!
Waltz—Waltz alone—both legs and arms demands,
Liberal of feet, and lavish of her hands;
Hands which may freely range in public sight
Where ne'er before—but—pray "put out the light."
Methinks the glare of yonder chandelier
Shines much too far—or I am much too near;
And true, though strange—Waltz whispers this remark,

"My slippery steps are safest in the dark!"120
  1. [A lively dance for one couple, characterized by a peculiar jumping step. It probably originated in Provence.]