Page images
PDF
EPUB

Feelings on feelings mingling, doubling rose;
My heart felt everything but calm repose;
I could not reckon minutes, hours, nor years,
But rose at once, and bursted into tears;
Then, like a fool, confused, sat down again,
And thought upon the past with shame and pain;
I raved at war and all its horrid cost,
And glory's quagmire, where the brave are lost.
On carnage, fire, and plunder long I mused,
And eursed the murdering weapons I had used.

Two shadows then I saw, two voices heard,
One bespoke age, and one a child's appeared.
In stepped my father with convulsive start,
And in an instant clasped me to his heart.
Close to him stood a little blue-eyed maid;
And stooping to the child, the old man said:
“Come hither, Nancy, kiss me once again;
This is your uncle Charles, come home from Spain.”
The child approached, and with her fingers light,
Stroked

my old eyes, almost deprived of sight. But why thus spin my tale—thus tedious be? Happy old soldier !. what's the world to me?

Bloomfield,

:

PLEASURES OF MEMORY.

CHILDHOOD's loved group revisits every scene,
The tangled wood-walk and the tufted green!
Indulgent Memory wakes, and lo, they live!
Clothed with far softer hues than light can give.
Thou first, best friend that Heaven assigns below,
To soothe and sweeten all the cares we know;
Whose glad suggestions still each vain alarm,
When nature fades and life forgets to charm;
Thee would the Muse invoke! to thee belong
The sage's precept and the poet's song.
What softened views thy magic glass reveals,
When o'er the landscape Time's meek twilight steals
As when in ocean sinks the orb of day,
Long on the wave reflected lustres play;

Thy tempered gleams of happiness resigned,
Glance on the darkened mirror of the mind.
The school's lone porch, with reverend mosses gray,
Just tells the pensive pilgrim where it lay.
Mute is the bell that rung at peep of dawn,
Quickening my truant feet across the lawn:
Unheard the shout that rent the noontide air
When the slow dial gave a pause to care.
Up springs, at every step, to claim a tear,
Some little friendship formed and cherished here;
And not the lightest leaf, but trembling teems
With golden visions and romantic dreams,

Down by yon hazel copse, at evening blazed
The gipsy's fagot—there we stood and gazed;
Gazed on her sunburnt face with silent awe,
Her tattered mantle and her hood of straw;
Her moving lips, her caldron brimming o'er;
The drowsy brood that on her back she bore,
Imps in the barn with mousing owlets bred,
From rifled roots at nightly revel fed;
Whose dark eyes flashed through locks of blackest shade,
When in the breeze the distant watch-dog bayed :
And heroes fled the sibyl's muttered call,
Whose elfin prowess scaled the orchard wall.
As o'er my palm the silver piece she drew,
And traced the line of life with searching view,
How throbbed my fluttering pulse with hopes and fears,
To learn the colour of my future years!

Ah, then, what honest triumph flushed my breast; This truth once known to bless is to be blest! We led the bending beggar on his wayBare were his feet, his tresses silver-graySoothed the keen pangs his aged spirit felt, And on his tale with mute attention dwelt: As in his scrip we dropt our little store, And sighed to think that little was no more, He breathed his prayer, “ Long may such goodness live!” 'Twas all he gave—'twas all he had to give.

*

Hail, Memory, hail! in thy exhaustless mine From age to age unnumbered treasures shine! Thought and her shadowy brood thy call obey, And Place and Time are subject to thy sway!

Thy pleasures most we feel when most alone;
The only pleasures we can call our own. .
Lighter than air, Hope's summer-visions die.
If but a fleeting cloud obscure the sky;
If but a beam of sober Reason play,
Lo, Fancy's fairy frost-work melts away!
But can the wiles of Art, the grasp of Power,
Snatch the rich relics of a well-spent hour?
These, when the trembling spirit wings her flight,
Pour round her path a stream of living light;
And gild those pure and perfect realms of rest,
Where Virtue triumphs, and her sons are blest !

Rogers.

THE FIRST OF WINTER.

Oh! sadly sighs the wintry breeze

Along the desert lea;
And moaning ʼmid the forest trees

It sings a dirge to me,-
The solemn dirge of dying flowers-
The death song of the emerald bowers

The first loud whistled lay,
Which summons Winter's stormy powers

On his coronation-day.
Darker and darker grows the sky;

With voice more loud and louder still

The stormy winds sweep by, and fill
The ear with awful melody.
Each tone of that majestic harp
Wakes other tones within to warp
My soul away, amid its bass,
To the greenwood, which lately was

A picture to my eye-
Which now is murk and bare! Alas!

Its sere leaves rustle by.
But ah! that tempest music tells

A tale which saddens more-
Of hearts it tells where sorrow dwells

On many a rocky shore,

When the poor bark is dashed and driven,
And plunged below, and tossed to heaven,

Amid the ocean's roar.
And oh! its wild and varied song

Hath an appalling power,
As swellingly it sweeps along

O'er broken tree and blasted flower.
The loud, loud laugh of frenzied lips,

The sigh of sorrowing breath,
The dread, dread crash of sinking ships,

The gurgling shriek of death,
Affection's wildest, warmest wish,
Devotion's holiest

cry, Are blended with that maddening blast,

And on the chords of sympathy Their varying accents now are cast. Yet more-it tells of more

Of Him who on its murky wing Rides calmly, and directs its roar,

Or stills it with His nod:
[ts voice is raised even now to sing

A wilder melody to God,
Who holds it in night's silent hush

Within the hollow of His hand,
Or bids it from His presence rush

In desolation o'er the land :
At his command alone it raves
O'er roofless cots and tumbling waves.

Bethune.

THE DEWDROP AND THE STREAM.

The brakes with golden flowers were crowned,
And melody was heard around-
When, near the scene, a dewdrop shed
Its lustre on a violet's head,
And trembling to the breeze it hung !
The streamlet as it rolled along,
The beauty of the morn confessed,
And thus the sparkling pearl addressed :

Sure, little drop, rejoice we may,
For all is beautiful and gay;
Creation wears her emerald dress,
And smiles in all her loveliness.
And with delight and pride I see
That little flower bedewed by theo-
Thy lustre with a gem might vie,
While trembling in its purple eye.”
“Ay, you may well rejoice, 'tis true,"
Replied the radiant drop of dew;
“You will, no doubt, as on you move,
To flocks and herds a blessing prove.
But when the sun ascends on high,
Its beam will draw me towards the sky;
And I must own my little power-
I've but refreshed a humble flower."
“Hold!” cried the stream, “nor thus repine-
For well 'tis known a Power divine,
Subservient to His will supreme,
Has made the dewdrop and the stream.
Though small thou art (I that allow),
No mark of Heaven's contempt art thou-
Thou hast refreshed a humble flower,
And done according to thy power.”
All things that are, both great and small,
One glorious Author form’d them all;
This thought may all repinings quell:
What serves His purpose, serves Him well.

Anonymous

A WINTER'S LANDSCAPE.

THROUGH the hushed air the whitening shower descends,
At first thin-wavering, till at last the flakes
Fall broad, and wide, and fast, dimming the day
With a continual flow. The cherished fields
Put on their winter robe of purest white :

« ՆախորդըՇարունակել »