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Thomas Noon Talfourd

XX: To Robert Browning

SUGGESTED BY A SUNSET OF UNUSUAL BEAUTY

A mighty sorrow gathers while the eye
Is by the sunset's waning glories fed,
For they recal the forms of poets dead,
Who with the first of mighty ages vie,
And lately veil'd by earth's horizon, shed
Sad beauty from beneath it;-yet a power,
Like the pale moon that to their lustrous hour
Gave the meek tribute of a young ally
Felt more than own'd, consoling light should shower
From crystal urn that holds the precious dower
Of Browning's genius-which, when breezes rend
Fond clouds its lavish splendours glorify,
Made free of azure fields, its course shall wend
To high dominion in serenest sky.

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XV: To Lord Denman,

RESIGNING THE OFFICE OF LORD CHIEF JUSTICE OF ENGLAND

There is a rapture in the great All Hail
With which a nation honours thy repose,
That proves thy image deathless-that the close
Of man's remotest age, whose boyhood glows
While pondering o'er thy lineaments, shall fail
To delegate to cold historic tale
What Denman was; for dignity that flows
Not in the moulds of compliment extern,
But from the noble spirit's purest urn,
Springs vital; justice shrined from wintry flaw
By beautiful regards, and thoughts that burn
With generous ire, within the soul shall draw
No form but thine, when distant times would learn
The embodied majesty of England's Law.

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XI: To Miss Adelaide Kemble,

ON HER APPROACHING RETIREMENT FROM THE STAGE. (DECEMBER, 1842.)

If Time has doom'd the triumphs of thy race
With loss of thee-the youngest and the last-
To take majestic station in the Past,
We thank thee that thy fleeting hours embrace
Some hint of all its glories;-bid us trace
In thy proud action the unconquer'd will
Of the great Roman; own once more a thrill
Akin to that which blanch'd the childish face
At Siddons' whisper; bless the honest grace
Which the true heart of chivalry should still
Shed o'er thy father's brow;-consoled that all,
Thus waning into memory, grow more sweet,
And make their last expressions musical,
To live while any heart they hush shall beat.

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