HEROD'S LAMENT FOR MARIAMNE
January 15, 1815
Oh, Mariamne ! now for thee
The heart for which thou bled'st is bleeding;
Revenge is lost in Agony
And wild Remorse to rage succeeding.
Oh, Mariamne ! where art thou?
Thou canst not hear my bitter pleading:
Ah ! could'st thou --- thou would'st pardon now,
Though Heaven were to my prayer unheeding.
And is she dead? --- and did they dare
Obey my Frenzy's jealous raving?
My Wrath but doomed my own despair:
The sword that smote her 's o'er me waving ---
But thou art cold, my murder'd Love !
And this dark heart is vainly craving
For her who soars alone above,
And leaves my soul, unworthy saving.
She's gone, who shared my diadem;
She sunk, with her my joys entombing;
I swept that flower from Judah's stem,
Whose leaves for me alone were blooming;
And mine's the guilt, and mine the hell,
This bosom's desolation dooming;
And I have earned those tortures well,
Which unconsumed are still consuming !