« السابقةمتابعة »
I FILL this cup to one made up of loveliness alone,
To whom the better elements and kindly stars have given
Her every tone is music's own, like those of morning birds, And something more than melody dwells ever in her words; The coinage of her heart are they, and from her lips each flows
As one may see the burthen'd bee forth issue from the rose.
Affections are as thoughts to her, the measure of her hours; Her feelings have the fragrancy, the freshness, of young flowers;
And lonely passions, changing oft, so fill her, she appears The image of themselves by turns, the idol of past years!
Of her bright face one glance will trace a picture on the brain, And of her voice in echoing hearts a round must long remain, But memory such as mine of her so very much endears, When death is nigh, my latest sigh will not be life's, but hers.
I fill this cup to one made up of loveliness alone,
A woman, of her gentle sex the seeming paragon
Her health and would on earth there stood some more of such a frame,
That life might be all poetry, and weariness a name.
WE break the glass, whose sacred wine
Lest future pledges, less divine,
Should e'er the hallow'd toy profane;
But still the old impassion'd ways
Thine image chamber'd in my brain.
A PICTURE SONG.
How may this little tablet feign the features of a face,
The charms, that all must wonder at, thou work of gods, in thee!
But yet, methinks, that sunny smile familiar stories tells,
Nor can my soul, the limner's art attesting with a sigh, Forget the blood that deck'd thy cheek, as rosy clouds the sky.
They could not semble what thou art, more excellent than fair,
As soft as sleep or pity is, and pure as mountain air;
The song I sing, thy likeness like, is painful mimicry
The sportive hopes that used to chase their shifting shadows
Like children playing in the sun, are gone-for ever gone; And on a careless, sullen peace, my double-fronted mind, Like Janus, when his gates are shut, looks forward and be
Apollo placed his harp, of old, awhile upon a stone,
Which has resounded since, when struck, a breaking harp string's tone;
And thus my heart, though wholly now from early softness free,
If touch'd, will yield the music yet, it first received of thee.
Is a native of Portland, Maine. He received a common school education, and was put apprentice to a shop keeper at twelve years of age. Behind the counter he continued till he was past twentyone. During this time he gave no indications of possessing that ability, for which he has afterwards become in some degree remarkable. At about eighteen, he tried his hand at poetry, but could make nothing of it; and the only paragraph in prose, which he ever attempted during his minority, except letters and advertisements, was a political squib, which found its way into one of the eastern newspapers. He removed to Baltimore in 1815. At this time, his powers began to develope themselves; he studied law, wrote poetry, novels, criticisms, and history, and after practising for a short time at the bar, left this country for England, in 1823. During his absence, he contributed largely to several of the British periodicals. He returned in 1827, and has since that time lived in Portland. In January, 1828, he began The Yankee, a weekly journal, which he still conducts.
Mr Neal must be allowed to be among the most remarkable of our writers, whether of poetry or prose. He is gifted with an almost magical facility of literary composition. What to others is a work of careful study, and severe labor, is to him a pastime. His writings have in most cases been thrown off with a rapidity that almost surpasses belief. "Seventy Six," his best novel, was the work of odd hours, and executed in less than a month. In other cases, he has rewritten a tale
from ten to forty times, and in his own judgment, never failed to spoil it as a story, if he had leisure sufficient, or felt any anxiety for its success.
We here offer a catalogue of his various productions. About 500 pages octavo, of prose and poetry chiefly however, criticism, published in The Portico, a monthly journal, conducted by Tobias Watkins, at Baltimore. Keep Cool, a novel in two volumes.
The Battle of Niagara, a poem.
Otho, a tragedy, (entirely re-written in The Yankee for 1828.)
Allen's History of the American Revolution, beginning with the chapter upon the declaration of Independence, and continuing to the end of the volume.
Newspaper essays, and criticisms to the amount of three or
four volumes, octavo, chiefly in the Baltimore Telegraph, and Allen's Journal of the Times.
Logan, a novel in two large volumes, republished in England in four.
Randolph, a novel in two volumes.
Seventy Six, a novel in two volumes.
Errata, a novel in two volumes.
Brother Jonathan, a novel in three volumes, published in England.
Criticisms on literature, and the Fine Arts, reviews, essays, stories, biographical sketches, &c, altogether, about three good sized octavos, in the different periodicals of Great Britain, chiefly Blackwood's Magazine, the European and Monthly.
Yankee for 1828, contains from six to ten octavos of original matter by the editor.
Rachel Dyer, a novel in one volume.
It appears therefore that what Mr Neal has published, would exceed fifty volumes duodecimo, as they are usually printed in England; and this has been accomplished in about twelve years!
His novels are the most striking of his works, and perhaps afford the fairest proofs of his talents, as well as of his peculiarities. They certainly baffle the powers of criticism. They are like nothing of the kind ever before seen, being alike remarkable for incoherence and wildness in plan, and for occasional passages of great splendor and eloquence.
The Battle of Niagara and Goldau, are his chief poems. There is not much of story in either. The narrative is altogether subordinate to the description, and has no precision or distinctness of outline. The narrative, however, is not what the author mainly relied upon for the interest of his poety. His strength is laid out on the appendages of the tale, and the descriptive passages which his poems afford in abundance, are uncommonly bold and sometimes magnificent. They are high wrought, brilliant and striking, and the objects are surrounded with every possible association of rich and dazzling imagery. His fancy however, is apt to run riot, and his conceptions are often invested in such a cloudy assemblage of thoughts, that his pictures have a confused, vague, and dreamy character. He overloads them with an exuberance of metaphor and similitudes, in such a manner as to obscure, rather than illustrate them; we cannot see heaven for the very stars. His fervor and impetuosity take away the faculty of seeing with distinctness the objects before him, and he is therefore perpetually deviating from the straight-forwardness of his direction; he is blinded by the swiftness of his course, like a charioteer wrapt in a cloud of smoke from his own axletree. The faults indeed of his poetry, are the faults of the man, of his constitution. We have his own words upon this point'It is no merit in me to compose rapidly. I claim no praise for it. I wish I could move inore slowly, less capriciously; but I cannot. Had I a dozen hands, I could keep them all employed when I am writing poetry. I know such things only expose me to the reiterated charge of vanity, and perhaps folly; but I cannot help saying, that when fairly absorbed in the contemplation of a subject, my whole soul is in a tu