SOUND not the Horn!--the guarded relic keep:
A faithful sharer of its master's sleep:
His life it gladden'd--to his life belong'd,--
Pause--ere thy lip the royal dead hath wrong'd.
Its weary weight but mocks thy feeble hand;
Its desolate note, the shrine wherein we stand.
Not such the sound it gave in days of yore,
When that rich belt a monarch's bosom wore,--
Not such the sound! Far over hill and dell
It waked the echoes with triumphant swell;

Heard midst the rushing of the torrent's fall,
From castled crag to roofless ruin'd hall,
Down the ravine's precipitous descent,
Thro' the wild forest's rustling boughs it went,
Upon the lake's blue bosom linger'd fond,
And faintly answer'd from the hills beyond:

Pause!--the free winds that joyous blast have borne:--
Dead is the hunter!--silent be the horn!

Sound not the horn! Bethink thee of the day
When to the chase an Emperor led the way;
In all the pride of manhood's noblest prime,
Untamed by sorrow, and untired by time,
Life's pulses throbbing in his eager breast,
Glad, active, vigorous,--who is now at rest:--
How he gazed round him with his eagle eye,
Leapt the dark rocks that frown against the sky,
Grasp'd the long spear, and curb'd the panting steed
(Whose fine nerves quiver with his headlong speed),
At the wild cry of danger smiled in scorn,
And firmly sounded that re-echoing horn!

Ah! let no touch the ivory tube profane
Which drank the breath of living Charlemagne;
Let not like blast by meaner lips be blown,
But by the hunter's side the horn lay down!

Or, following to his palace, dream we now
Not of the hunter's strength, or forest bough,
But woman's love! HER offering this, perchance,--
This, granted to each stranger's casual glance,
This, gazed upon with coldly curious eyes,
Was giv'n with blushes, and received with sighs!
We see her not;--no mournful angel stands
To guard her love-gift from our careless hands;
But fancy brings a vision to our view--
A woman's form, the trusted and the true:
The strong to suffer, tho' so weak to dare
Patient to watch thro' many a day of care,
Devoted, anxious, generous, void of guile,
And with her whole heart's welcome in her smile;
Even such I see! Her maidens, too, are there,
And wake, with chorus sweet, some native air;
But tho' her proud heart holds her country dear,
And tho' she loves those happy songs to hear,

She bids the tale be hush'd, the harp be still,
For one faint blast that dies along the hill.
Up, up, she springs; her young head backward thrown;
'He comes! my hunter comes!--Mine own--mine own!'

She loves, and she is loved--her gift is worn--
'Tis fancy, all!--And yet--lay down the horn!

Love--life--what are ye?--since to love and live
No surer record to our times can give!
Low lies the hero now, whose spoken name
Could fire with glory, or with love inflame;
Low lies the arm of might, the form of pride,
And dim tradition dreameth by his side.
Desolate stand those painted palace-halls,
And gradual ruin mines the massy walls,
Where frank hearts greeted many a welcome guest,
And loudly rang the beaker and the jest;--
While here, within this chapel's narrow bound,
Whose frozen silence startles to the sound
Of stranger voices ringing thro' the air,
Of faintly echoes many a humble prayer;

Here, where the window, narrow arch'd, and high,
With jealous bars shuts out the free blue sky,--
Where glimmers down, with various-painted ray,
A prison'd portion of God's glorious day,--
Where never comes the breezy breath of morn,
Here, mighty hunter, feebly wakes thy horn!