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ALL night the music of the Guzla falls
Upon the perfumed air :

Its plaintive note love's sweet complainings calls From dusky bosoms bare.


All night the gipsy, lying in the grass,
Waking, the moon admires :

And prays the clouds before the stars that pass Not to blot out their fires !


All night beneath the low caressing boughs
Of trees the maidens lie,

Nor sleep, but whisper of each other's vows,
While round them night-birds fly.


The scent of grass is in their matted locks,
The blossoms bend to kiss

Their swarthy brows: the earth her children rocks To rest and dreamful bliss.


The brooding quiet of the mystic East
Enfolds them in its charm:

They cling to Nature, for she spreads their feast And shelters them from harm.


All night the music of the Guzla tells
Its tale of love and pain :
All night in reverie the gipsy dwells
On the Roumanian plain.



BESIDE the turbid stream she stood :
Beneath her simple scarlet hood
I saw her tender brow; her eyes
Filled with a quaint and glad surprise;
The glory of her chestnut hair,—
And lips and throat supremely fair.
I thought a goddess had come down
To light the dull lanes of the town
With presence luminous and fine.

She would have graced the noblest shrine
That ever pagan built, before

The gods fled to return no more.


Her limbs were weary, and she leaned
At last against a barge, and screened

Her face, and sought to hide her tears.
Urged terribly by hundred fears,
With thousand others she had fled
Through vale, o'er mountain; ever dread
Of Mussulman upon her track
Possessed her, and she looked not back,
Nor thought upon her dear home's loss,
But made the good sign of the cross
Upon her breast: sped swiftly on,
Nor stopped until her strength was gone.


I read her story thus, for we

Saw many a Bosnian refugee
In those wild days of Moslem war.
And yet this knowledge did not mar
The reverent awe I felt at first,
When her celestial beauty burst
Upon me; nay, could have knelt
And kissed her hand, her robe, and felt
A very worship in the deed.

I stood transfixed; I did not heed
The gibe of trooper-friends who came
To ask the pretty Bosnian's name.


She knew not what they said, nor raised
Her head but once, and then she gazed
So gently on me, that I burned

With joy, and every comrade spurned
Away, and took her hand in mine.
'Go, sordid brawlers, flushed with wine!'
I cried to them; then led her where
Kind hands could proffer friendly care.
She knew not to suspect; she gave
Her kisses to the matron grave
Who offered shelter: then in sleep
She speedily forgot to weep.


I loved her as she slept: I loved
Her when she woke and softly moved,
And murmured in her Slavic tongue
Plaints from her heart in anguish wrung.
One thought usurped her loyal mind,—
Her kindred she had left behind,

Or lost, in her mad flight from Death :
And now she prayed with every breath
That Heaven would send her back to them.
Like rose dropt from its parent stem,
She withered and declined: and I
Wept as I heard her mournful cry.

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