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Page:The Works of Lord Byron (ed. Coleridge, Prothero) - Volume 3.djvu/285

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CANTO II.]
253
THE CORSAIR.

I only marked the glorious Sun and sky,
Too bright—too blue—for my captivity;
And felt that all which Freedom's bosom cheers
Must break my chain before it dried my tears.
This mayst thou judge, at least, from my escape,
They little deem of aught in Peril's shape;
Else vainly had I prayed or sought the chance
That leads me here—if eyed with vigilance:
The careless guard that did not see me fly,
May watch as idly when thy power is nigh.700
Pacha! my limbs are faint—and nature craves
Food for my hunger, rest from tossing waves:
Permit my absence—peace be with thee! Peace
With all around!—now grant repose—release."


"Stay, Dervise! I have more to question—stay,
I do command thee—sit—dost hear?—obey!
More I must ask, and food the slaves shall bring;
Thou shalt not pine where all are banqueting:
The supper done—prepare thee to reply,
Clearly and full—I love not mystery."710
'Twere vain to guess what shook the pious man,
Who looked not lovingly on that Divan;
Nor showed high relish for the banquet prest,
And less respect for every fellow guest.
'Twas but a moment's peevish hectic passed
Along his cheek, and tranquillised as fast:
He sate him down in silence, and his look
Resumed the calmness which before forsook:
The feast was ushered in—but sumptuous fare
He shunned as if some poison mingled there.720
For one so long condemned to toil and fast,
Methinks he strangely spares the rich repast.
"What ails thee, Dervise? eat—dost thou suppose