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"GO FORTH INTO THE FIELDS."
Whose giant trunks a verdant roof uprear,
And listen, while the roar of some far flood
Thrills the young leaves with fear!
Stand by the tranquil lake,
Sleeping mid willowy banks of emerald dye,
Save when the wild bird's wing its surface break,
Checkering the mirror'd sky—
And if within your breast,
Hallow'd to nature's touch, one chord remain;
If aught save worldly honours find you blest,
Or hope of sordid gain,-
A strange delight shall thrill,
A quiet joy brood o'er you like a dove;
Earth's placid beauty shall your bosom fill,
Stirring its depths with love.
O, in the calm, still hours,
The holy Sabbath-hours, when sleeps the air,
And heaven, and earth, deck'd with her beauteous flowers,
Lie hush'd in breathless prayer,—
Pass ye the proud fane by,
The vaulted aisles, by flaunting folly trod,
And, 'neath the temple of the uplifted sky,
Go forth and worship God!
STANZAS WRITTEN IN AUTUMN.
BY JOHN G. C. BRAINARD.
THE dead leaves strew the forest walk,
And wither'd are the pale wild flowers;
The frost hangs blackening on the stalk,
The dew-drops fall in frozen showers.
Gone are the spring's green sprouting bowers, Gone summer's rich and mantling vines,
And autumn, with her yellow hours,
On hill and plain no longer shines.
I learn'd a clear and wild-toned note,
That rose and swell'd from yonder tree—
A gay bird, with too sweet a throat,
There perch'd and raised her song for me.
The winter comes, and where is she?
Away-where summer wings will rove,
Where buds are fresh, and every tree
Is vocal with the notes of love.
Too mild the breath of southern sky,
Too fresh the flower that blushes there,
The northern breeze that rustles by.
Finds leaves too green, and buds too fair; No forest tree stands stripp'd and bare, No stream beneath the ice is dead,
No mountain top, with sleety hair,
Bends o'er the snows its reverend head,
THE GRAY FOREST-EAGLE.
Go there, with all the birds, and seek
A happier clime, with livelier flight,
Kiss, with the sun, the evening's cheek,
And leave me lonely with the night.
I'll gaze upon the cold north light,
And mark where all its glories shone,―
See-that it all is fair and bright,
Feel-that it all is cold and gone.
WITH storm-daring pinion and sun-gazing eye,
The gray forest-eagle is king of the sky!
O, little he loves the green valley of flowers,
Where sunshine and song cheer the bright summer hours,
For he hears in those haunts only music, and sees
Only rippling of waters and waving of trees;
There the red robin warbles, the honey-bee hums,
The timid quail whistles, the sly partridge drums;
And if those proud pinions, perchance, sweep along,
There's a shrouding of plumage, a hushing of song;
The sunlight falls stilly on leaf and on moss,
And there's nought but his shadow black gliding across;
But the dark, gloomy gorge, where down plunges the foam
Of the fierce, rock-lash'd torrent, he claims as his home:
There he blends his keen shriek with the roar of the flood,
And the many-voiced sounds of the blast-smitten wood;
From the crag-grasping fir-top, where morn hangs its wreath,
He views the mad waters white writhing beneath :
On a limb of that moss-bearded hemlock far down,
With bright azure mantle and gay-mottled crown,
The kingfisher watches, where o'er him his foe,
The fierce hawk sails circling, each moment more low:
Now poised are those pinions, and pointed that beak,
His dread swoop is ready, when hark! with a shriek,
His eye-balls red-blazing, high bristling his crest,
His snake-like neck arch'd, talons drawn to his breast,
With the rush of the wind-gust, the glancing of light,
The gray forest-eagle shoots down in his flight;
One blow of those talons, one plunge of that neck,
The strong hawk hangs lifeless, a blood-dripping wreck;
And as dives the free kingfisher, dart-like on high
With his prey soars the eagle, and melts in the sky.
A fitful red glaring, a low, rumbling jar,
Proclaim the storm demon yet raging afar:
The black cloud strides upward, the lightning more red, And the roll of the thunder more deep and more dread; A thick pall of darkness is cast o'er the air,
And on bounds the blast with a howl from its lair:
The lightning darts zig-zag and fork'd through the gloom,
And the bolt launches o'er with crash, rattle, and boom;
The gray forest-eagle, where, where has he sped?
Does he shrink to his eyrie, and shiver with dread?
Does the glare blind his eye? Has the terrible blast
On the wing of the sky-king, a fear-fetter cast?
No, no, the brave eagle! he thinks not of fright;
The wrath of the tempest but rouses delight;
To the flash of the lightning his eye casts a gleam,
To the shriek of the wild blast he echoes his scream,
And with front like a warrior that speeds to the fray,
And a clapping of pinions, he's up and away!
Away, O, away, soars the fearless and free!
What recks he the sky's strife?—its monarch is he!
THE GRAY FOREST-EAGLE.
The lightning darts round him, undaunted his sight;
The blast sweeps against him, unwaver'd his flight;
High upward, still upward, he wheels, till his form
Is lost in the black, scowling gloom of the storm.
The tempest sweeps o'er with its terrible train,
And the splendour of sunshine is glowing again;
Again smiles the soft, tender blue of the sky,
Waked bird-voices warble, fann'd leaf-voices sigh;
On the green grass dance shadows, streams sparkle and run,
The breeze bears the odour its flower-kiss has won,
And full on the form of the demon in flight
The rainbow's magnificence gladdens the sight!
The gray forest-eagle! O, where is he now,
While the sky wears the smile of its GoD on its brow?
There's a dark, floating spot by yon cloud's pearly wreath,
With the speed of the arrow 'tis shooting beneath!
Down, nearer and nearer it draws to the gaze,
Now over the rainbow, now blent with its blaze,
To a shape it expands, still it plunges through air,
A proud crest, a fierce eye, a broad wing are there;
"Tis the eagle-the gray forest-eagle-once more
He sweeps to his eyrie: his journey is o'er!
Time whirls round his circle, his years roll away,
But the gray forest-eagle minds little his sway;
The child spurns its buds for youth's thorn-hidden bloom,
Seeks manhood's bright phantoms, finds age and a tomb;
But the eagle's eye dims not, his wing is unbow'd,
Still drinks he the sunshine, still scales he the cloud!
The green tiny pine-shrub points up from the moss,
The wren's foot would cover it, tripping across;
The beech-nut down dropping would crush it beneath, But 'tis warm'd with heaven's sunshine, and fann'd by its breath;