Page images

of a statuc-like sentinel, or some other trivial occur-|| from her deck, supported by a set of standing rigging rence broke upon the spell.

strained as taut as a bow string, and the running rigging, It was during one of these intervals, when, scarcely a ropes and lines hung from mast to mast and spar to spar, breath was stirring, that the houses the water's edge forming most graceful curves and festoons. Every sail were shook by a violent concussion and then the report was formed of snow white canvass, and as the distance of a heavy piece of ordnance echoed through the town. from the town gradually lessened, one after the other was Instantly every window which afforded the slightest clewed up and bound to the yards, until when, obedient glimpse of the harbor, was thronged, and multitudes to her helm, she swung around at two cable's length hurried along the, until now, deserted strects.

The from the wharf, not a rag of canvass was visible at any wharves were peopled with the town's-folks, of whom point. not one could answer the oft repeated inquiry as to the

" For’ard there," sounded the command from the cause of the alarm.

quarter deck, “ let go the chain achor.” Ten minutes had elapsed from the first discharge,

Instantly the chain rattled through the hause-hole and when a bright flash issued from a craft in the direction of splash ! sunk the heavy anchor into the water; at the Staten Island, and a second report rolled up heavily over

same instant another discharge from one of the guns of the water; and at the same time a lantern rose from her the craft, broke upon the stillness, a rocket with its train deck to the mast-head and another to her peak.

of vivid fire rose hissing into the air, and then the broad “Can'st make her out," cried a dozen voices to a sea

blue field and red cross of Britain was sent flying to her man who had mounted a hogshead for better observa- | mast head. tion.

" Who is shewhere from and what is her errand ?" "Not yet,” was the reply, " wait 'till she shoots into were questions repeated again and again by those ashore the moonlight and then—"

but without eliciting the slightest satisfactory answer. " Looks she like a lugger ?" interrupted a portly None knew her name, her country or errand. She was Dutch merchant, opening his mouth and puffing out a

not a merchantman. She carried too many guns and dense column of tobacco smoke, “I would give ten

was withal of too war-like an appearance for a peaceaguilders were it the Frau-Vanhoore."

ble trader. Yet she could not be of the navy. None Your guilders are safe," answered the seaman, “it were expected. These and similar other conjectures is not your craft—Der Tyvel! she's a beauty.”

puzzled the brains of the curious spectators in vain.-The moon which had now risen was shedding a rich There lay the brig before them, and from the mocolumn of silver light along the surface of the water,

ment of the flight of the rocket, not the slightest and across this path a beautiful swan-like brig of match- appearance of life was witnessed by them.

For a long less symmetry and exact proportions was slowly moving. time they remained upon the wharf hoping some boat

Shows she no signal ?" again demanded the mer- would put off from her that would solve the mystery chant.

with which she was enshrouded, but to no purpose, no Look sharp—a white ground with a blue ball boat came, and seeing that the entire night bid fair to and"

be spent in fruitless suppositions, one by one of those "I tell you no," interrupted the seaman impatiently, who had been drawn thither through curiosity, left the “such a pretty bird of the ocean can never belong to the wharf, and in a short time it was as deserted as it had house of Vanderheen and company. Are you in your been at the moment when the first gun of the stranger sepses, man, see you not that if occasion needs she is called the citizens forth. one that can run races with the wind, and the stiffest hurricane can never compel the swiftest lugger of your

It was just midnight, when a small boat, which was line, to log more than two knots an hour."

suspended at the stern of the vessel was lowered into A boisterous laugh from all who heard this sally, the water, and instantly manned by four seamen. Shortsomewhat abashed the merchant, who shrunk back ly after, a person who seemed by the deference paid him among the crowd and contented bimself with specula- to be one in command, stepped upon the gunwale. He ting in his own mind upon the probable character of the baited, and his eye glanced from his own vessel to the

town and to the brig of war, and from thence it wanderstrange vessel.

The brig whose appearance had caused this undue ed quickly from one object to the other in every direcexcitement on shore, was now slowly moving up to the

tion. town. She was of that class now known as herma

“Give way, men,” said he, in a low tone, seating phrodite, of about a hundred-and-fifiy tons burthen, a kind himself in the stern sheets apparently satisfied. of craft but little known and still less used at that period ;

" Whither." yet to those who were at all acquainted with the build

“ The Governor's landing," was the answer. of vessels it must have been obvious that a more conve

The boat shot out from the dark counter of the brig nient bark as regarded both sailing and carrying could and gained the current. For an instant only the men scarcely have been constructed. Every part exhibited poised their oars, and then with long and steady strokes the inost faultless symmetry. She sat upon the water swept toward the town. like a swan. Her bow was sharp and tapered off to a “ Lay upon your oars," said the leader, in the same clean run.

Two slender and somewhat raking masts, || cautious tones, as the boat struck her bow upon the crossed by slight yards at their respective distances, rose stone steps, and he stepped ashore, " lay off, and ba


careful you get into no quarrels with these brawling || is in readiness, and I but wait for my papers and a Dutchmen-shove away!"

breeze," replied the Bucaneer. “Tomorrow, if it As the boat backed into the stream he raised his eyes please you, I'll spread my canvass, and trust me, ere I and suffered them to rest upon the light hull and rigging again anchor this side of the Narrows, I shall have won of his own vessel, and then turning abruptly away, such renown, that Fame will have bruited my name walked up the landing with hasty steps.

from one end of the known world to the other." In one of the largest mansions of the town, in a room “I believe you, Kyd,” rejoined the Earl, impresused for the purposes of a library, the Earl of Bella- sively. “I know you are possessed of a daring soul, mont, was striding impatiently to and fro.

His arms

which no danger or hardship can awe. I know that if were folded, his eyes fixed intently upon the ground and once roused, there is that in your bosom that will make his whole manner argued but ill concealed discontent. even devils pale with envy, but I pray you keep your Upon the table, scattered in negligent confusion, lay a temper in subjection, and above all, forget not your number of papers, and conspicuous among the rest was allegiance to your King. How think you the name of a small package strongly tied and sealed with the arms Robert Kyd would grace the commission of a frigate of Bellamont.

-ay, as its commander." Twelve o'clock !” exclaimed the Earl, pausing in the A smile forced itself upon the lips of the Bucaneer, middle of his steps, as the tones of the church clocks as he could not help evincing his satisfaction at the proschiming the midnight hour, sounded through the room ; pect of having a man of war committed to his charge. “curses on bis dilatory movements when so much is at " You are silent as though you doubted it,” continued stake-five hours have gone hy and yet I have not seen the Earl, arguing a different conclusion from the seahim. I warrant he is now carousing in some tavern,

man's silence. “ Believe me,

I am in earnest. Should perchance brawling in the streets, when he should be you return successful--and whether you do or not, rests upon the sea. Strange, I may have been mistaken," with yourself-none shall be more richly and honorably he continued, advancing and throwing open a window rewarded than you. You shall walk our streets, and that looked upon the harbor, “yet, no—it is the same- figure at the court of royalty, the envy of the envied. it must be the Vengeance. There glimmers the signal Wealth shall be at your command, and the highest veteat the mast head and peak—and the rocket—why does rans of Britain's navy shall be proud to serve under one he tarry ?”

who has rendered his country such essential serviceA hand was laid lightly upon his shoulder, and a voice that of ridding its seas of the vultures that prey upon its which was not unknown to him, exclaimed: “Earl commerce. The Union-jack shall be lowered in courtesy Bellamont."

to your flag, and the name of Robert Kyd shall be a Welcome, Captain Kyd, right welcome,” answered watch-word and battle-cry to strike terror into the ranks the Earl, turning and offering his hand familiarly to the of piracy and crime." Bucaneer. " " By my coronet, I had given up all hopes of The countenance of the Bucaneer grew pale and seeing you, or else I had thought myself mistaken. It flushed by turns, as the Earl held out these inducements, was indeed then, the ordnance of the Adventure Galley and as he ceased speaking he grasped his hand, exclaimthat echoed through the town at dark."

ing“Say rather of the Vengeance," answered Kyd. “I will—by Heaven it shall be as you say. My ban"But Vengeance, no longer," replied the Earl, with a

carry death wherever it goes, they shall hear smile. “ You must change these cut-throat titles. | my name with trembling, and the guns of the Vengeance King William would well nigh go crazy did he dream shall be to them a scourge more devastating than the that he employed a craft with such a blood-thirsty name. plague. Give me my papers; to-morrow shall begin a But come, we must not dally in idle words. What de new era in my life.” tained you so long? Why came you not bither immedi To-night-this very hour, must you sail,” said the ately upon anchoring?"

Earl, giving the package sealed with his arms. “ You To say the truth,” replied the Bucaneer, “I have must away before it is known that you have been among been in New York before, and there are those with whom us. Nay-look not so. I know that the Vengeance has I care not to renew acquaintance. I therefore waited been in these waters before, and were the commander of until the lateness of the hour should effectually shield yonder brig that now lies so supinely upon the sleeping me from the danger of recognition.”

bay, to know that the smuggler was now within range of It is well, and, indeed, I know not but wisely,” | his guns, rest assured not even your commission would rejoined the Earl, “ for should our plans miscarry, none

save you unscathed.” need know that the Adventure Galley has ever been “He would find that for every shot he gave, two within our harbor. Whence came you last?"

would be returned," replied Kyd, fiercely. “By Sa“From Plymouth, and now bound in quest of adven- thanus, I have almost a mind to run my brig along-side ture."

and give him a parting salute. But no, my fire must be “Whither go you first ?" inquired the Governor. reserved for those that make the most resistance. " To the Indian Ocean."

“In this package," continued Bellamont, “ you will " Are you all prepared to sail? Do you lack any | find two commissions. One authorising you to use all thing ?"

means in your power-of peace or war—of treaty or the Nothing. My bark is in perfect trim ; every thing force of arms, to extirpate the gang of pirates and des

ner shall


[ocr errors]



peradoes therein named. The other is a letter of com “Fore and aft,” shouted the trumpet-toned voice of mission for reprisals. With this, you are to capture, Kyd. “Stand to your guns. Depress the pieces, and sink, burn or destroy every thing that comes in your sweep the deck. Gun for gun, and shot for shot. Fire!" way appertaining to the French flag, but by no means A dozen flashes lit up the narrow space between the are you to deviate, in the least, from your track. You two brigs-a dozen of the culter's pieces bellowed forth are now in possession of your instructions-great trust their contents upon her antagonist's deck, and long ere is reposed in you, and I beseech you betray it not. Use the vast clouds of smoke had rolled to leeward, the your power discreetly—and now farewell."

Vengeance was heading rapidly toward the narrows. Once more he extended his hand to the Bucaneer, who received it, and pressed it to his lips, then grasping All are familiar with the subsequent actions of the the package, left the house, and the next moment the renowned rover. It is well known how deeply he imbued sound of his footsteps died away in the distance. A his hands in bloodshed and rapine, ere justice overtook few hasty steps brought him to the landing, and signing him in his short but criminal career. Years upon years to the boat's crew to shove in and receive him, he step- i have rolled away, but still he is not forgotten. Legends ped aboard, and a single stroke sent it far into the chan- and tales, fearful and marvellous, connected with his nel. Any signs of a breeze," said Kyd, to the one memory, have been multiplied in every variety of form, who sat next to him.

and spread to the utmost corners of the earth. Well, “ There is a nor’wester beating to quarters aloft,” | too well, did he redeem his pledge to the Earl of Bellaanswered the seaman, "and by the next watch, if we mont, for his name was, indeed, bruited from one end of put to sea, we shall have the spray under our bows flying the known world to the other, but associated with deeds like a cataract.

of such frightful hues, that the bare relation would well “Silence, we are passing the brig of war."

nigh chill a stoic's blood with horror. Like a mountain in a valley lay the sleeping lion, at the distance of two oars' length from the boat. Several

Original. lanterns gleamed at various points about her rigging, but not the least sign of activity was visible.

TO LITTLE MAY VINCENT. “A dozen good swords to back me, and I'd carry that brig's deck in spite of her teeth,” exclaimed Kyd. “Ha! to your oars, men-pull, and send us clear of

My wee-bit, bonny, blue-eyed May! her."

Well fits the name we gave in play; • Boat, ahoy !" hailed a voice from the brig.

For Spring, with all her tears and smiles, "Bend on, hearties,” exclaimed Kyd. As no answer

Her frolic frowns and wooing wiles, being returned, the summons was again repeated.

Is just like thee—so fresh, so bright, “Sweep us aboard the Vengeance in the least possible

With breath of balm and eyes of light. time. I'm in no mood to answer the cry of every bully

My treasure, May! my nestling dove! that chooses to hail us. Dash away, we are almost

My wild-flower, nursed by Hope and Love! aboard."

My sunlit gem! my morning star! A dozen strokes more, and the boat shot in under the

Oh! there is nothing near or far, counter of the Vengeance, and in another moment, was

Of soft or beautiful or free, hanging at its accustomed berth.

That does not mind my heart of thee. All was bustle and activity aboard the cutter as soon

Yet, all combined, star, blossom, bird, as its commander touched the deck. The courses were

Bring to it no such joy divine set, the topsails and lighter sails loosed, the massy

As the first charily-uttered word, anchor came slowly up from its ocean bed, and the

That falters from those lips of thine. graceful bark feeling the influence of the land breeze,

Twelve times the maiden qucen of night careered, for a moment, upon her side, and then upright, like a being of the sea, slowly cut her path through the

Has donned her veil of silver light, dancing waters that were washing her form. A bright

And walked the silent, heavenly plain, flash shot over the surface of the harbor, the roar of a

Majestic 'mid her radiant train, gun boomed heavily, und then a whizzing shot from the

Since May first ope'd her playful eyes ; brig of war came skipping through the rigging of the

And yet she is not over-wise ;

For even now she shouts with joy, Vengeance, cutting the fore topsail halliard in twain. “For’ard, there," shouted the commander. “Spring

When on the floor the sunshine plays, aloft a dozen of you, and secure the fore tops'l. Lively,

And deems the spot a golden toy, lively, and then we'll have revenge. Load every gun

And creeps to lift its mocking rays. along the leeward bulwarks, and light your matches. Ah, May! be still a child in this, All ready, there ?"

Through life, amid its gloom and bliss, * Ay, ay, sir."

Though clouds of care be all about, " Then down with the helm, and lay us along-side." Those eyes will find the sunshine out,

Obedient to the command, the cutter, was instantly Then pass the shade with Hope's delight, brought in close contact with the brig.

And only play where Joy is bright.




l' neatly, and even tastefully, for she had an air of natural JO E LO W E L L.

gentility about her, and had learned the best of every thing in the families in which she had lived ; leaving what was doubtful or evil-just as the wild bee extracts honey from herbs in themselves deadly in their poison

a siinile, which I trust my readers are prepared to apI have always been taught, and firmly to believe, that preciate, as well for its beauty as originality, “money is the root of all evil;" I say money, without

After the lapse of a year or two, Joe's old habits the qualification of the love of it; for the having of the one always implies the other. I thus believe; but I returned, and his cart was oftener seen standing at never saw the truth of the thing so thoroughly illustra- house; then he began to complain of the dullness of the

the door of a porter-house, than backed up to a ware. ted as lately, in the case of poor Joseph Lowell, or more familiarly, Joe Lowell. And here let me pause a

times, and that he should have to change his business. moment over my story, by way of moral, just to remark

Jane gently remonstrated, urged him to persevere, softly, how much better and more considerate Fortune is, than with a trembling voice, and tears in her eyes, hinted at we, ourselves, are apt to be, in these matters. Those to

the probable cause; held her baby to his lips, and whom money is denied, are apt to fret, and fume, and implored him to be all that a father should be to the regard themselves as extremely ill-used, when, in fact, poor innocent. Joe grew sulky, swore, and pushed her she has treated them with the greatest possible kindness, one side; and the next day, sold his horse and cart at just as the good parent withholds the sugar-plum, that half price, just, as he said, to show he wouldn't be dictam might produce worms, nausea, and all sorts of derange

ted to. Poor Jane saw the proceeds go, day after day, ment. For myself, I feel a pride in regarding myself as

in foolish expenditure, while her husband spent his time a particular favorite in this respect, and am full of com

in idleness and drinking, and returned, at night, a sot passion for my poor neighbors, who are so vulgarly blest and a brute, to tyranize over herself and child. with the goods of this world, thereby losing much of the

Love is not the result of excellencies in the object, dignity of virtue, its superiority to circunstance, and its made up of admiration of the good and noble of those philosophic spirit of endurance.

we love ; if so, it were an ephemeral growth, dying But to my story. Joe had, formerly, been a footman with the sunlight; but it is an instinct, springing from in a rich family in New-York; with high wages, and the depths of a woman's heart, and clinging to its object little to do, except to open the carriage door for the long after all that should foster its growth has gone to ladies, and ring the bells at the princely dwellings of decay; it lives there, it may be, in the memory of fors those upon whom they chose to call, and then ride up mer happiness, and the agony of sorrow but drives the and down Broadway, swaying back and forth with the roots of its affection deeper into the heart. Thus it was motion of the carriage, and smiling and bowing to the with Jane; diligently did she labor, and husband her pretty chambermaids that put their heads out of the little store, for she saw the black cloud gathering, that windows to attract his observation; all the time holding


must wreck her all of life and hope. Joe had ceased 10 lightly by the back of the carriage, and standing very provide for the necessities of his family, and now all straight, thus to exhibit his handsome form to the best devolved upon herself; and when he returned at night, advantage, with his laced hat and coat, and shapely leg, there was always the tea at the fire, and some delicacy and smart-looking shoes. At home, his labors were

reserved for himself, and the patient smile of his wife to more onerous, consisting of heavy charges upon the make the best of every thing. larder, and plunging to the bottom of glasses and wine It was the first day of May, when all the New York bottles, for his master was a “whole-souled man,” and world is expected to move. Jane had engaged this year scorned the meanness of looking after these things, rooms in a basement, for she was 100 feeble to climb to especially as he could always dismiss a servant, when the attic and could not afford the rent of the medium his visage was becoming too rubicund to be a credit to floors. She was busy packing their little furniture, and his establishment.

Joe stood at the corner with both his hands in his Joe, in the course of events, was, of course, presented pockets, a cigar in his mouth, and his back against the with his walking ticket; but not until he had united his lamp post, watching the tumult in the street, the passing destiny with that of Jane Gould, a pretty eastern girl, and repassing of loads, the smashing of glass and china, who had been nurse in the family.

the dislocation of chairs and the wreck of tables. A Jane was well aware of the faults of Joe; but when smart gig drove along, and the gentleman reined up does a woman calculate in matters of the heart ? She where Joe was standing. It was his old master; and a loved him, and believed that love would work wonders sudden consciousness of his "loafer"-like, (we must use in the way of reformation. And so it did for a while. the word, it is so expressive for the meridian of our Joe overcame his disinclination to labor, so far as to story,) appearance made Joe feel so sheepish, that he purchase a horse and cart, intending to live by carrying 'I was on the point of dodging the corner; but the gentlegoods from one part of the city to the other. Jane, who i man without comment, asked him if he was out of was modest and active, had saved her wages, so that employ and would like a job. Joe assented. now she could hire three rooms on the second floor of a “Well," said the other, “we are about moving into house, pay the quarter's rent in advance, and furnish it our new house and if you'll take hold, I'll pay you five

dollars for your day's work. You may go round soon as the lamp post in the morning. Joe thought, “had I you choose."

more I might do something, but five dollars is nothing," Joe sauntered home and told Jane. Now she had so so he went in and called for a glass of, I don't know abandoned all hope of any help from Joe, that the bare what; but it drowned his reason-be called for more, mention of his earning five dollars was too much for her, and grew boisterous and quarrelsome. The owner of and she burst into tears. He was sober that morning, the shop attempted to put him out-Joe resisted-broke for he had no money of his own, and he had still retained the tumblers, and a regular fight commenced, in which so much of manliness as to make him ashamed to take he was knocked upon the pavement, bleeding and sensethe earnings of his wife to indulge his own vile appetites; less. In this situation he was carried home. The night 80 when Jane wept he understood the cause, and made was waxing late, and Jane was prepared for the worst. a lazy resolution to do better in future. He went to She did not shriek or faint, but quietly employed the earn his five dollars, and Jane, with the help of a girl means for his recovery. But his skull was fractured and whom she had befriended in teaching her to sew, and do he died the next day. other nice work, by which she could earn a good living, Thus is my point established. I say nothing about commenced moving herself, only hiring one load remo- porter-houses, temperance, or idleness, for I am not ved, carrying the rest in their arms, and in baskets. preaching a homily; but had not Joe obtained the money

I met her once on her way, the sun was very pow. | the root of all evil, he could not have gone to the portererful, and a rapid shower had just passed over, leaving house, he would not have broken the tumblers and made the air motionless, the warın exhalations going up from a row, and of course his own head would not have been the gutters with an almost suffocating heat, and loaded broken ; and, he might have been to this day holding up with impurity, and everybody looked old, care-worn, and the lamp post, and living upon his wife's labor. dispirited, and there was poor Jane, and her young friend bending under their burdens, each with a load in one hand, and carrying a huge basket between them; and

Original, the little girl, terrified at the sights and sounds, clinging to the gown of her mother, now on one side, and now on

THE DEAD BOY! the other, which ever way passengers came, impeding her steps, and increasing her fatigue and perplexity;

“For of such is the Kingdom of Heaved." added to this Jane's motion, reminded one of the“ pretty " It must be sweet in childhood to give back swaying” walk of the mother of Cerdita, but the crowd

The spirit to its Maker."- Anon. went by unnoticing, for who would think of sentiment,

Why will ye weep! Your lovely babe has found or Shakspeare, in the case of a pale woman, bending A brighter realm, with richer beauties crowned ; under two burdens.

On scenes divine he feasts his ravished sight, Just as I passed, the child had come right in front of And bathes his spirit in celestial light. her mother clinging hold with both hands, and begging to be taken up. Jane sat down her load, and I heard

'Neath purer skies, than arch this 'vale of woe,' her say in

a low voice, as she wiped the face of her child, He gaily roves, where fruits ambrosial grow; “Oh, God, I shall die!" I was sorry to hear even that,

And green parterres, of rich, perennial hue, and yet it seemed wrung out by illness and fatigue.

Sparkle with drops of fresh and pearly dew. That night before eight o'clock, her litile room was looking neat and quiet, and she had expended her last | There crystal streams, with waters cool and bright, cent in providing a bit of meat for Joe after his day of Regale the taste with exquisite delight; labor, unmindful of herself who had toiled the hardest. There balmy zephyrs fan the blissful shore, of the two.

And storms, that wreck this wintry world, are o'er. In the meanwhile Joe went through the work of the day with something of his former gaiety, and the sight Why will ye weep! When in that cherub band, of comfort and luxuries only to be secured by temperance Whose soft, sweet strains, enchant th’ Elysian land; and labor, helped on his good resolves. At night he Your beauteous boy, from “care's wild deluge " free, received his cash and turned for home, thinking of Jane, Swells his clear notes of holy exstasý. of her delicate health and hard exertions; and then

the image of her as he had once known her, Life's varied ills in Heaven, are all unknown, and his heart smote him for his own cruelty. Then, Its emerald gates admit no earthly groan; came plans as to what he should purchase with his But joys abound, which mortals may not share, money. He would procure any necessaries for Jane's Then cease to weep! Your darling son is there. approaching illness---he would buy himself a pair of shoes, and a hat-he would buy a load of wood, Jane a bonnet, ' A few brief moments over, and the tomb or the child some clothing. The more he planned, the Will shroud you in its deep and voiceless gloom; more their necessities pressed upon him, and the thought May its dark portals ope' to that bright shore, that where he had but five, they needed a hundred.—Where parted friends will meet to part no more! His mind had just reached this conclusion, when he stood by the porter house where he had been supporting Chillicothe, Ohio, 1840.




« ՆախորդըՇարունակել »