Laura Sophia Temple

The Murderer

Hark! to the muttering blast of Night
That sweeps o'er the heath its ruffling wing;
Now does it rush o'er the dark-cliff's height
And now in the ruins loudly sing.

And did I not hear a fiend-like scream
Mingling its grief with the raving storm?
And does not the lightning's zig-zag gleam
Give to my eye-sight a ghostly form?

Yes! yes! 'tis the wailing voice of woe
That pours its dirge to the midnight gloom;
Yes! yes! 'tis a spirit shall howling go
'Till the judgment day shall seal its doom.

Oh! 'tis the Murderer Jasper's shade
Whose pale-corse hangs on the heath hard by,
There does it wither and there does it fade,
And nightly swing to the cold-gale's sigh.

Long has his gibbet creak'd to the blast,
And long has his dark-ghost wander'd near,
And oft has the traveller journeying past
Shrunk at the sight appall'd by fear.

And well may he shrink--for round the heath
Fell demons dance to the cold-moon's light,
And oft does the pale, pale form of Death
Ride by on the dusky cloud of Night.

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