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Page:The Works of Lord Byron (ed. Coleridge, Prothero) - Volume 3.djvu/585

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545
STANZAS TO AUGUSTA.

And Hope but shed a dying spark
Which more misled my lonely way;
In that deep midnight of the mind,
And that internal strife of heart,
When dreading to be deemed too kind,
The weak despair—the cold depart;
When Fortune changed—and Love fled far,[1]
And Hatred's shafts flew thick and fast,10
Thou wert the solitary star[2]
Which rose and set not to the last.[3]
Oh! blest be thine unbroken light!
That watched me as a Seraph's eye,
And stood between me and the night,
For ever shining sweetly nigh.
And when the cloud upon us came,[4]
Which strove to blacken o'er thy ray—[5]
Then purer spread its gentle flame,[6]
And dashed the darkness all away.20
Still may thy Spirit dwell on mine,[7]

And teach it what to brave or brook—

    parting tribute to her whose tenderness had been his sole consolation in the crisis of domestic misery—were, we believe, the last verses written by Lord Byron in England. In a note to Mr. Rogers, dated April 16 [1816], he says, "My sister is now with me, and leaves town to-morrow; we shall not meet again for some time at all events—if ever! and under these circumstances I trust to stand excused to you and Mr. Sheridan, for being unable to wait upon him this evening."—Note to Edition of 1832, x. 193. A fair copy, broken up into stanzas, is endorsed by Murray, "Given to me (and I believe composed by Ld. B.), Friday, April 12, 1816."]

  1. When Friendship shook ——.—[MS. M.]
  2. Thine was the solitary star.—[MS. M.]
  3. Which rose above me to the last.—[MS. M.]
  4. And when the cloud between us came.—[MS. M.]
    And when the cloud upon me came.—[Copy C. H.]
  5. Which would have closed on that last ray.—[MS. M.]
  6. Then stiller stood the gentle Flame.—[MS. M.]
  7. Still may thy Spirit sit on mine.[MS. M.]