Verse > Anthologies > Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, ed. > Poems of Places > Asia
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Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, ed.  Poems of Places: An Anthology in 31 Volumes.
Asia: Vols. XXI–XXIII.  1876–79.
 
Asia Minor: Rhodes, the Island
The Turkish Lady
Thomas Campbell (1777–1844)
 
’T WAS the hour when rites unholy
  Called each Paynim voice to prayer,
And the star that faded slowly
  Left to dews the freshened air.
 
Day her sultry fires had wasted,        5
  Calm and sweet the moonlight rose;
Even a captive’s spirit tasted
  Half oblivion of his woes.
 
Then ’t was from an Emir’s palace
  Came an Eastern lady bright;        10
She, in spite of tyrants jealous,
  Saw and loved an English knight.
 
“Tell me, captive, why in anguish
  Foes have dragged thee here to dwell,
Where poor Christians as they languish        15
  Hear no sound of Sabbath bell?”
 
“’T was on Transylvania’s Bannat
  When the crescent shone afar,
Like a pale disastrous planet
  O’er the purple tide of war.        20
 
“In that day of desolation,
  Lady, I was captive made:
Bleeding for my Christian nation
  By the walls of high Belgrade.”
 
“Captive! could the brightest jewel        25
  From my turban set thee free?”
“Lady, no! the gift were cruel,
  Ransomed, yet if reft of thee.
 
“Say, fair princess! would it grieve thee
  Christian climes should we behold?”        30
“Nay, bold knight! I would not leave thee
  Were thy ransom paid in gold!”
 
Now in heaven’s blue expansion
  Rose the midnight star to view,
When to quit her father’s mansion,        35
  Thrice she wept and bade adieu!
 
“Fly we then, while none discover;
  Tyrant barks, in vain we ride!”
Soon at Rhodes the British lover
  Clasped his blooming Eastern bride.        40
 
 
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