ページの画像
PDF
ePub

At her approach, the Grave appears

The Gate of Paradise restored ; Her voice the watching Cherub hears,

And drops his double-flaming sword.

While the wounds of woe are healing,

While the heart is all resign'd; "T is a solemn feast of feeling,

"T is the sabbath of the mind.

Baptized with her renewing fire,

May we the crown of glory gain; Rise when the Host of Heaven expire,

And reign with God, for ever reign!

"THE JOY OF GRIEF."

OssiaN. SWEET the hour of tribulation,

When the heart can freely sigh; And the tear of resignation

Twinkles in the mournful eye.

Have you felt a kind emotion

Tremble through your troubled breast; Soft as evening o'er the ocean,

When she charms the waves to rest ?

Pensive memory then retraces

Scenes of bliss for ever fled. Lives in former times and places.

Holds communion with the dead.
And when night's prophetic slumbers

Rend the veil to mortal eyes,
From their tombs the sainted numbers

Of our lost companions rise.
You have seen a friend, a brother,

Heard a dear dead father speak;
Proved the fondness of a mother,

Felt her tears upon your cheek. Dreams of love your grief beguiling,

You have clasp'd a consort's charms, And received your infant smiling

From his mother's sacred arms. Trembling, pale, and agonizing,

While you mourn'd the vision gone, Bright the morning-star arising

Open'd heaven, from whence it shone. Thither all your wishes bending,

Rose in ecstacy sublime, Thither all your hopes ascending

Triumph'd over death and time. Thus afflicted, bruised, and broken,

Have you known such sweet relief! Yes, my friend; and by this token, • You have felt " THE JOY OF GRIXF."

Have you lost a friend, or brother?

Heard a father's paiting breath? Gazed upon a lifeless mother,

Till she seem'd to wake from death?

Have you felt a spouse expiring

In your arms, before your view? Watch'd the lovely soul retiring

From her eyes that broke on you? Did not grief then grow romantic,

Raving on remember'd bliss ? Did you not, with fervor frantic,

Kiss the lips that felt no kiss ? Yes! but, when you had resign'd her,

Life and you were reconciled; , Anna left-she left behind her,

One, ono dear, one only child.

THE BATTLE OF ALEXANDRIA

But before the green moss peeping,

His poor mother's grave array'd, In that grave the infant sleeping

On the mother's lap was laid.

At Thebes, in Ancient Egypt, was erected a statue of Mennon, with a harp in his hand, which is said to have bailed wat delightful music the rising sun, and in melancholy topes to have mourned his departure. The introduction of the cele brated Lyre, on a modern occasion, will be censured as 18 anachronism by those only who think that its chords have been touched unskilfully.

Horror then, your heart congealing,

Chillid you with intense despair : Can you call to mind the feeling ?

No! there was no feeling there.

HARP of Memnon! sweetly strimg

To the music of the spheres, While the Hero's dirge is sung,

Breathe enchantment to our ears.

From that gloomy trance of sorrow

When you woke to pangs unknown, How unwelcome was the morrow,

For it rose on YOU ALONE !

Sunk in self-consuming anguish,

*Can the poor heart always ache ? No! the tortured nerve will languish,

Or the strings of life must break. O'er the yielding brow of Sadness

One faint smile of comfort stole; One soft pang of tender gladness

Exquisitely thrill'd your soul.

As the Sun's descending bearns,

Glancing o'er thy feeling wire, Kindle every chord that gleams,

Like a ray of heavenly fire: Let thy numbers, soft and slow,

O'er the plain with carnage spread, Soothe the dying, while they flow

To the memory of the dead. Bright as Venus, newly born,

Blushing at her maiden charms; Fresh from ocean rose the Morn, When the trumpet blew to arms.

[blocks in formation]

Yet shall Memory mourn that day,

When, with expectation pale, of her soldier far away

The poor widow hears the tale.

My Friend was young, the world was new; The world was false, my friend was true; Lowly his lot, his birth obscure, His fortune hard, my friend was poor; To wisdom he had no pretence, A child of suffering, not of sense ; For Nature never did impart A weaker or a warmer heart.

His fervent soul, a soul of flame,
Consumed its frail terrestrial frame;
That fire from Heaven so fiercely burn'd,
That whence it came it soon return'd:
And yet, O Pillow! yet to me,
My gentle Friend survives in thee;
In thee, the partner of his bed,
In thee, the widow of the dead.

Thus, gathering lustre in its race,
And shining through unbounded space,
From earth to heaven his Genius soar'd,
Time and eternity explored,
And haild, where'er its footsteps trod,
In Nature's temple, Nature's God:
Or pierced the human breast, to scan
The hidden majesty of Man ;
Man's hidden weakness too descried,
His glory, grandeur, meanness, pride :
Pursued along their erring course
The streams of passion to their source :
Or in the mind's creation sought
New stars of fancy, worlds of thought
-Yet still through all his strains would low
A tone of uncomplaining woe,
Kind as the tear in Pity's eye,
Soft as the slumbering Infant's sigh,
So sweetly, exquisitely wild,
It spake the Muse of Sorrow's child.

On Helicon's inspiring brink, Ere yet my Friend had learn'd to think, Once as he pass'd the careless day Among the whispering reeds at play, The Muse of Sorrow wander'd by ; Her pensive beauty fix'd his eye; With sweet astonishment he smiled ; The Gipsy saw—she stole the child ; And soft on her ambrosial breast Sang the delighted babe to rest; Convey'd him to her inmost grove, And loved him with a Mother's love Awaking from his rosy nap, And gaily sporting on her lap, His wanton fingers o'er her lyre Twinkled like electric fire : Quick and quicker as they flew, Sweet and sweeter tones they drew; Now a bolder hand he flings, And dives among the deepest strings; Then forth the music brake like thunder; Back he started, wild with wonder. The Muse of Sorrow wept for joy, And clasp'd and kiss'd her chosen boy.

O Pillow! then, when light withdrew, To thee the fond enthusiast flew; On thee, in pensive mood reclined, He pour'd his contemplative mind, Till o'er his eyes with mild control Sleep like a soft enchantment stole, Charm'd into life his airy schemes, And realized his waking dreams,

Soon from those waking dreams he woke, The fairy spell of fancy broke; In vain he breathed a soul of fire Through every chord that strung his lyre. No friendly echo cheer'd his tongue; Amidst the wilderness he sung; Louder and bolder bards were crown'd, Whose dissonance his music drown'd; The public ear, the public voice. Despised his song, denied his choice, Denied a name,-a life in death, Denied a bubble and a breath.

Ah! then no more his smiling hours Were spent in Childhood's Eden-bowers; The fall from Infant-innocence, The fall to knowledge drives us thence : O Knowledge! worthless as the price, Bought with the loss of Paradise. As happy ignorance declined, And reason rose upon his mind, Romantic hopes and fond desires (Sparks of the soul's immortal fires) Kindled within his breast the rage To breathe through every future age, To clasp the fitting shade of fame, To build an everlasting name, O'erleap the narrow vulgar span, And live beyond the life of man

Stript of his fondest, dearest claim, And disinherited of fame, To thee, O Pillow! thee alone, He made his silent anguish known; Flis haughty spirit scorn'd the blow That laid his high ambition low; But, ah! his looks assumed in vain A cold ineffable disdain, While deep he cherish'd in his breast The scorpion that consumed his regt.

Then Nature's charms his heart possess'd, And Nature's glory fill'd his breast : The sweet Spring-morning's infant rays, Meridian Summer's youthful blaze, Maturer Autumn's evening mild, And hoary Winter's midnight wild, Awoke his eye, inspired his tongue ; For every scene he loved, he sung. Rude were his songs, and simple truth, Till Boyhood blossom'd into Youth; Then nobler themes his fancy fired, To bolder flights his soul aspired; And as the new moon's opening eye Broadens and brightens through the sky, From the dim streak of western light To the full orb that rules the night;

Yet other secret griefs had he, O Pillow! only told to thee : Say, did not hopeless love intrude On his poor bosom's solitude ? Perhaps on thy soft lap reclined, In dreams the cruel Fair was kind, That more intensely he might know The bitterness of waking woe.

Whate'er those pangs from me conceal'd. To thee in midnight groans reveald, They stung remembrance to despair; " A wounded Spirit who can bear 9"

Meanwhile Disease, with slow decay,
Moulder'd his feeble frame away;
And as his evening sun declined,
The shadows deepend o'er his mind.
What doubts and terrors then possess'd
The dark dominion of his breast !
How did delirous fancy dwell
On Madness. Suicide, and Hell !
There was on earth no Power to save:
-But, as he shudder'd o'er the grave,
He saw from realms of light descend
The friend of him who has no friend,
Religion Her almighty breath
Rebuked the winds and waves of death;
She bade the storm of frenzy cease,
And smiled a calm, and whisper'd peace :
Amidst that calm of sweet repose,
To Heaven his gentle Spirit rose.

Till his Master, from above, When the promised hour was come, Sent the chariot of his love To convey the Wanderer home. Saw ye not the wheels of fire, And the steeds that cleft the wind ? Saw ye not his soul aspire, When his mantle dropp'd behind ? Ye who caught it as it fell, Bind that mantle round your breast; So in you his meekness dwell, So on you his spirit rest! Yet, rejoicing in his lot, Still shall Memory love to weep O'er the venerable spot Where his dear cold relics sleep. Grave! the guardian of his dust, Grave! the treasury of the skies, Every atom of thy trust Rests in hope again to rise.

VERSES

TO THE MEMORY OF THE LATE JOSEPH BROWNE, OF LO

THERSDALE, ONE OF THE PEOPLE CALLED QUAKERS,
WHO HAD SUFFERED A LONG CONFINEMENT IN THE
CASTLE OF YORK, AND LOSS OF ALL HIS WORLDLY
PROPERTY, FOR CONSCIENCE SAKE.
"SPIRIT, leave thine house of clay;
Lingering Dust, resign thy breath!
Spirit, cast thy chains away;
Dust, be thou dissolved in death!"

Hark! the judgment-trumpet calls
“Soul, rebuild thine house of clay :
Immortality thy walls,
And Eternity thy day!"

Thus thy Guardian Angel spoke, As he watch'd thy dying bed ; As the bonds of life he broke, And the ransom'd captive fled.

THE THUNDER-STORM.
O for Evening's brownest shade!

Where the breezes play by stealth
In the forest-cinctured glade,

Round the hermitage of Health: While the noon-bright mountains blaze In the sun's tormenting rays.

“ Prisoner, long detain'd below; Prisoner, now with freedom blest ; Welcome, from a world of woe, Welcome to a land of rest!”

O'er the sick and sultry plains,

Through the dim delirious air, Agonizing silence reigns,

And the wanness of despair : Nature faints with fervent heat, Ah! her pulse hath ceased to beat.

Thus thy Guardian Angel sang, As he bore thy soul on high; While with Hallelujahs rang All the region of the sky.

Now, in deep and dreadful gloom,

Clouds on clouds portentous spread, Black as if the day of doom

Hung o'er Nature's shrinking head : Lo! the lightning breaks from high, -God is coming God is nigh!

_Ye that mourn a Father's loss, Ye that weep a Friend no more, Call to mind the Christian cross Which your Friend, your Father bore. Grief and penury and pain Still attended on his way, And Oppression's scourge and chain, More unmerciful than they. Yet, while travelling in distress ("T was the eldest curse of sin) Through the world's waste wilderness, He had paradise within.

Hear ye not his chariot-wheels,

As the 'mighty thunder rolls ? Nature, startled Nature reels,

From the centre to the poles; Tremble Ocean, Earth, and Sky, Tremble !-God is passing by!

And along that vale of tears,
Which his humble footsteps trod,
Sulla shining path appears,
Where the Mourner walk'd with God.

Darkness, wild with horror, forms

His mysterious hiding-place; Should He, from his ark of storms,

Rend the veil, and show his face, At the judgment of his eye. All the universe would die.

[graphic]
« 前へ次へ »