om whom the many fled,
Restrained the ardent bridle of my life.
"It shall be thine another life to live,--
Thy youth to me surrender!
To thee this surety only can I give"--
I took the surety in that life to live;
And gave to her each youthful joy so tender.
"Give me the woman precious to thy heart,
Give up to me thy Laura!
Beyond the grave will usury pay the smart."--
I wept aloud, and from my bleeding heart
With resignation tore her.
"The obligation's drawn upon the dead!"
Thus laughed the world in scorn;
"The lying one, in league with despots dread,
For truth, a phantom palmed on thee instead,
Thou'lt be no more, when once this dream has gone!"
Shamelessly scoffed the mockers' serpent-band
"A dream that but prescription can admit
Dost dread? Where now thy God's protecting hand,
(The sick world'