Lalla Rookh

Original Text: 
Thomas Moore, Lalla Rookh, an oriental romance (London: Longman, 1817). 5th edn. PR 5054 L3 1817 Robarts Library
From The Fire-worshippers
1"How sweetly," said the trembling maid,
2Of her own gentle voice afraid,
3So long had they in silence stood,
4Looking upon that tranquil flood--
5"How sweetly does the moon-beam smile
6To-night upon yon leafy isle!
7Oft in my fancy's wanderings,
8I've wish'd that little isle had wings,
9And we, within its fairy bow'rs,
10    Were wafted off to seas unknown,
11Where not a pulse should beat but ours,
12    And we might live, love, die alone!
13Far from the cruel and the cold,--
14    Where the bright eyes of angels only
15Should come around us, to behold
16    A paradise so pure and lonely.
17Would this be world enough for thee?"--
18Playful she turn'd, that he might see
19    The passing smile her cheek put on;
20But when she mark'd how mournfully
21    His eyes met hers, that smile was gone;
22And, bursting into heart-felt tears,
23"Yes, yes," she cried, "my hourly fears
24My dreams have boded all too right--
25We part--for ever part--to-night!
26I knew, I knew it could not last--
27'Twas bright, 'twas heav'nly, but 'tis past!
28Oh! ever thus, from childhood's hour,
29I've seen my fondest hopes decay;
30I never lov'd a tree or flow'r,
31    But 'twas the first to fade away.
32I never nurs'd a dear gazelle
33    To glad me with its soft black eye,
34But when it came to know me well
35    And love me, it was sure to die!
36Now too--the joy most like divine
37    Of all I ever dreamt or knew,
38To see thee, hear thee, call thee mine,--
39    Oh misery! must I lose that too?
40Yet go--on peril's brink we meet;--
41    Those frightful rocks--that treach'rous sea--
42No, never come again--though sweet,
43    Though heav'n, it may be death to thee.
44Farewell--and blessings on thy way,
45    Where'er thou goest, beloved stranger!
46Better to sit and watch that ray,
47And think thee safe, though far away,
48    Than have thee near me, and in danger!"
Publication Start Year: 
RPO poem Editors: 
G. G. Falle
RPO Edition: 
3RP.II.478; RPO 1996-2000.