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Prior. Mine eyes are dim with age—but many

thoughts Do stir within me at thy voice.

Str. List to me, monk; it is thy trade to talk,
As reverend men do use in saintly wise,
Of life's vicissitudes and vanities.
Hear one plain tale that doth surpass all saws-
Hear it from me Count Bertram-ay, Count Ber-

tram!
The darling of his liege and of his land,
The army's idol, and the council's head-
Whose smile was fortune, and whose will was law-
Doth bow him to the Prior of St. Anselm
For water to refresh his parched lip,
And this hard-matted couch to fling his limbs on.

Prior. Good Heaven and all its saints !
Bertram. Wilt thou betray me?
Prior. Lives there the wretch beneath these walls to

do it?
Sorrow enough hath bowed thy head already,
Thou man of many woes.-
Far more I fear lest thou betray thyself.
Hard by do stand the halls of Aldobrand,
(Thy mortal enemy and cause of fall,)
Where ancient custom doth invite each stranger,
Cast on this shore, to sojourn certain days,
And taste the bounty of the castle's lord.
If thou goest not, suspicion will arise ;
And if thou dost (all changed as thou art)
Some desperate burst of passion will betray thee,
And end in mortal scathe- (A pause.)
Why dost thou gaze on with such fixed eyes ?

Ber. What sayest thou ?
I dreamed I stood before Lord Aldobrand
Impenetrable to his searching eyes-
And I did feel the horrid joy men feel
Measuring the serpent's coil, whose fangs have stung

them; Scanning with giddy eye the air-hung rock,

From which they leapt and live by miracle ;-
To see that horrid spectre of my thoughts
In all the stern reality of life-
To mark the living lineaments of hatred,
And
say,

this is the man whose sight should blast me; Yet in calm dreadful triumph still gaze on :It is a horrid joy. (Crosses to L.)

Prior. Nay, rave not thus, Thou wilt not meet him; many a day must pass Till from Palermo's walls he wend him homeward, Where now he tarries with St. Anselm's knights. His dame doth dwell in solitary wise, Few are the followers in his lonely hallsWhy dost thou smile in that most horrid guise ? Ber. (Repeating.) His dame doth dwell alone. Per

chance his childOh! no, no, no! it was a damned thought.

Prior. I do but indistinctly hear thy words, But feel they have some fearful meaning in them.

Ber. Oh, that I could but mate him in his might ! Oh, that we were on the dark wave together,

(Crosses to r.) With but one plank between us and destruction, That I might grasp him in these desperate arms, And plunge with him amid the weltering billows And view him gasp for life !-andHa! ha!-I see him struggling !I see him !-ha! ha! ha! (A frantic laugh.)

Prior. Oh, horrible ! Help!-Help to hold him, for my strength doth fail.

Enter MONK, L.

Monk. The lady of St. Aldobrand sends greetingPrior. Oh, art thou come; this is no time for greet

ingHelp-bear him off-thou see'st his fearful state.

[Exeunt, bearing off BERTRAM, R.

THE FORGING OF THE ANCHOR.

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BY SAMUEL FERGUSON, Q.C., M.R.I.A. COME, see the Dolphin's anchor forged—'tis at a white

heat now: The bellows ceased, the flames decreased—tho' on the

forge's brow The little flames still fitfully play through the sable

mound, And fitfully you still may see the grim smiths ranking

round, All clad in leathern panoply, their broad hands only

bare Some rest upon their sledges here, some work the wind

lass there.

The windlass strains the tackle chains, the black mound

heaves below, And red and deep a hundred veins burst out at every

throe : It rises, roars, rends all outright—Oh, Vulcan, what a

glow ! 'Tis blinding white, 'tis blasting bright—the high sun

shines not so! The high sun sees not, on the earth, such fiery, fearful

show; The roof-ribs swarth, the candent earth, the ruddy

lurid row Of smiths that stand, an ardent band, like men before

the foe. As, quivering thro' his fleece of flame, the sailing mon

ster, slow

Sinks on the anvil-all about the faces fiery grow, “Hurrah!" they shout, “leap out—leap out!" bang,

bang the sledges go : Hurrah!" the jetted lightnings are hissing high and lowA hailing fount of fire is struck at every squashing

blow,

The leathern mail rebounds the hail, the rattling cinders

strow The ground around : at every bound the sweltering

fountains flow, And thick and loud the swinking crowd at every stroke

pant

6 ho!"

Leap out, leap out, my masters; leap out and lay on

load! Let's forge a goodly anchor-a bower thick and broad; For a heart of oak is hanging on every blow, I bode, And I see the good ship riding, all in a perilous roadThe low reef roaring on her lee—the roll of ocean

pour'd From stem to stern, sea after sea; the mainmast by the

board; The bulwarks down, the rudder gone, the boats stove

at the chains ! But courage still, brave mariners—the bower yet re

mains, And not an inch to flinch he deigns, save when ye pitch

sky high; Then moves his head, as tho' he said, “ Fear nothing

here am I!" Swing in your strokes in order, let foot and hand keep

time; Your blows make music sweeter far than any steeple's

chime. But, while you sling your sledges, sing, and let the

burthen be, The anchor is the anvil king, and royal craftsmen we ! Strike in, strike in—the sparks begin to dull their

rustling red; Our hammers ring with sharper din, our work will soon

be sped. Our anchor soon must change his bed of fiery rich

array, For a hammock at the roaring bows, or an oozy couch

of clay;

Our anchor soon must change the lay of merry crafts

men here, For the yeo-heave-o', and the heave-away, and the

sighing seaman's cheer; When, weighing slow, at eve they go-far, far from love

and home; And sobbing sweethearts, in a row, wail o'er the ocean

foam.

now

In livid and obdurate gloom he darkens down at last; A shapely one he is, and strong, as e'er from cat was

cast. O trusted and trustworthy guard, if thou hadst life like

me, What pleasures would thy toils reward beneath the deep

green sea! O deep-sea diver, who might then behold such sights

as thou? The hoary monster's palaces ! methinks what joy 'twere To go plumb plunging down amid the assembly of the

whales, And feel the churn'd sea round me boil beneath their

scourging tails ! Then deep in tangle-woods to fight the fierce sea

unicorn, And send him foiled and bellowing back, for all his

ivory horn; To leave the subtle sword-fish of bony blade forlorn; And for the ghastly-grinning shark to laugh his jaws to

scorn ; To leap down on the kraken's back, where 'mid Nor

wegian isles He lies, a lubber anchorage for sudden shallow'd miles; 'Till snorting, like an under-sea volcano, off he rolls; Meanwhile to swing, a-buffeting the far astonished

shoals Of his back-browsing ocean-calves; or, haply in a cove, Shell-strown, and consecrate of old to some Undiné's

love,

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