Beautiful Poetry.

ODE ON THE SPRING. By Gray, well known to every reader as the author of the famous Elegy.

Lo! where the rosy-bosom'd hours,

Fair Venus' train, appear,
Disclose the long-expecting flowers,

And wake the purple year!
The Attic warbler pours her throat,
Responsive to the cuckoo's note,

The untaught harmony of Spring :
While, whispering pleasure as they fly,
Cool zephyrs through the clear blue sky

Their gather'd fragrance fling.
Where'er the oak's thick branches stretch

A broader, browner shade;
Where'er the rude and moss-grown beech

O'er-occupies the glade,
Beside some water's rushy brink
With me the Muse shall sit and think

(At ease reclined in rustic state),
How vain the ardour of the crowd,
How low, how little, are the proud,

How indigent the great !
Still is the toiling hand of Care :

The panting herds repose :
Yet bark, how through the peopled air

The busy murmur glows !
The insect youth are on the wing,
Eager to taste the honied Spring,

And float amid the liquid noon :
Some lightly o'er the current skim,
Some show their gaily-gilded trim,

Quick glancing to the sun.


To Contemplation's sober eye,

Such is the race of man:
And they that creep, and they that fly,

Shall end where they began.
Alike, the busy and the gay
But flutter through life's little day,

In Fortune's varying colonrs dress'd :
Brush'd by the hand of rough Mischance,
Or chill'd by Age, their airy dance

They leave, in dust to rest.

Methinks I hear, in accents low,

The sportive kind reply:
"Poor moralist! and what art thou ?

A solitary fly!
Thy joys no glittering female meets,
No hive hast thou of hoarded sweets,

No painted plumage to display:
On hasty wings thy youth is flown :
Thy sun is set, thy spring is gone
We frolic while 'tis May.”

A passage from Endymion, by KEATS.

So she was gently glad to see him laid Under her favourite bower's quiet shade, On her own couch, new made of flower leaves, Dried carefully on the cooler side of sheaves, When last the sun his autumn tresses shook, And the tann'd harvesters rich armfuls took. Soon was he quieted to slumbrous rest: But, ere it crept upon him, he had prest Peona's busy hand against his lips, And still, a-sleeping, held her finger-tips In tender pressure. And as a willow keeps A patient watch over the stream that creeps Windingly by it, so the quiet made Held her in peace: so that a whispering blade

Of grass, a wailful gnat, a bee bustling
Down in the blue bells, or a wren light rustling
Among sere leaves and twigs, might all be heard.

O magic sleep! O comfortable bird, That broodest o'er the troubled sea of the mind Till it is hush'd and smooth! O unconfined Restraint ! imprison'd liberty! great key To golden palaces, strange minstrelsy, Fountains grotesque, new trees, bespangled caves, Echoing grottoes full of tumbling waves And moonlight ; ay, to all the mazy world Of silvery enchantment !--who, upfurl'd Beneath thy drowsy wing a triple hour, But renovates and lives?



Upon a rock that, high and sheer,

Rose from the mountain's breast,
A weary hunter of the deer

Had sat him down to rest,
And bared to the soft summer air
His hot red brow and sweaty hair.

All dim in haze the mountains lay,

With dimmer vales between ;
And rivers glimmer'd on their way,

By forests faintly seen ;
While ever rose a murmuring sound,
From brooks below, and bees around.

He listen'd, till he seem'd to hear

A strain so soft and low,
That whether in the mind or ear

The listener scarce might know.
With such a tone, so sweet and mild,
The watching mother lulls her child.

" Thou weary huntsman,” thus it said,

" Thou, faint with toil and beat, The pleasant land of rest is spread

Before thy very feet,
And those whom thou wouldst gladly see
Are waiting there to welcome thee."
He look’d, and 'twixt the earth and sky,

Amid the noontide haze,
A shadowy region met his eye,

And grew beneath his gaze,
As if the vapours of the air
Had gather'd into shapes so fair.
Groves freshen'd as he look'd, and flowers

Show'd bright on rocky bank,
And fountains well'd beneath the bowers

Where deer and pheasant drank.
He saw the glittering streams, he heard
The rustling bough and twittering bird.
And friends—the dead-in boyhood dear,

There lived and walk'd again,
And there was one who many a year

Within her grave had lain,
A fair young girl, the hamlet's pridem
His heart was breaking when she died :

Bounding, as was her wont, she came

Right towards his resting-place,
And stretch'd her hand and call'd his name,

With that sweet smiling face.
Forward, with fix'd and eager eyes,
The hunter lean'd, in act to rise :
Forward, he lean'd, and headlong down

Plunged from that craggy wall:
He saw the rocks, steep, stern, and brown,

An instant in his fall;
A frightful instant-and no more,
The dream and life at once were o'er.

THE BIRD'S RELEASE. Mrs. HEMANS, though too often indulging in the gorgeous, has many specimens of the sweet and simple. Such an one is this.

The Indians of Bengal, and of the coast of Malabar, bring cages filled with birds to the graves of their friends, over which they set the birds at liberty. This custom is alluded to in the description of Virginia's funeral. See Paul and Virginia.

Go forth, for she is gone!
With the golden light of her wavy hair,
She is gone to the fields of the viewless air :

She hath left her dwelling lone !

Her voice hath pass'd away!
It hath pass'd away like a summer breeze,
When it leaves the hills for the far blue seas,

Where we may not trace its way.

Go forth, and like her be free!
With thy radiant wing and thy glancing eye,
Thou hast all the range of the sunny sky:

And what is our grief to thee ?

Is it aught even to her we mourn ?
Doth she look on the tears by her kindred shed ?
Doth she rest with the flowers o'er her gentle head,

Or float, on the light wind borne ?

We know not but she is gone!
Her step from the dance, her voice from the song,
And the smile of her eye from the festal throng-

She hath left her dwelling lone !


A fine passage from POPE.
Born to no pride, inheriting no strife,
Nor marrying discord in a noble wife,
Stranger to civil and religious rage,
The good man walk'd innoxious through his age.
No courts he saw, no suits would ever try,
Nor dared an oath, nor hazarded a lie.

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