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النشر الإلكتروني

132

THE NOTES OF THE BIRDS.

Upon the red-stemm'd hazel's slender twig,
That overhangs the brook, and suits her song
To the slow rivulet's inconstant chime.

In the last days of Autumn, when the corn
Lies sweet and yellow in the harvest field,
And the gay company of reapers bind

The bearded wheat in sheaves, then peals abroad
The blackbird's merry chant. I love to hear,
Bold plunderer, thy mellow burst of song
Float from thy watchplace on the mossy tree
Close at the cornfield edge.

Lone whip-poor-will,

There is much sweetness in thy fitful hymn,
Heard in the drowsy watches of the night.
Ofttimes, when all the village lights are out,
And the wide air is still, I hear thee chant
Thy hollow dirge, like some recluse who takes
His lodging in the wilderness of woods,
And lifts his anthem when the world is still:
And the dim, solemn night, that brings to man
And to the herds deep slumbers, and sweet dews
To the red roses and the herbs, doth find
No eye, save thine, a watcher in her halls.

I hear thee oft, at midnight, when the thrush
And the green, roving linnet are at rest,

And the blithe, twittering swallows have long ceased
Their noisy note, and folded up their wings.

Far up some brook's still course, whose current mines The forest's blacken'd roots, and whose green marge Is seldom visited by human foot,

The lonely heron sits, and harshly breaks

The Sabbath silence of the wilderness:

And you may find her by some reedy pool,
Or brooding gloomily on the time-stain'd rock,
Beside some misty and far-reaching lake.

TO A CITY PIGEON.

Most awful is thy deep and heavy boom,

Gray watcher of the waters! Thou art king
Of the blue lake; and all the winged kind
Do fear the echo of thine angry cry.

How bright thy savage eye! Thou lookest down,
And seest the shining fishes as they glide;
And, poising thy gray wing, thy glossy beak
Swift as an arrow strikes its roving prey.
Ofttimes I see thee, through the curling mist,
Dart like a spectre of the night, and hear
Thy strange, bewildering call, like the wild scream
Of one whose life is perishing in the sea.

And now, wouldst thou, O man! delight the ear
With earth's delicious sounds, or charm the eye
With beautiful creations? Then pass forth,
And find them mid those many-colour'd birds
That fill the glowing woods. The richest hues
Lie in their splendid plumage, and their tones
Are sweeter than the music of the lute,
Or the harp's melody, or the notes that gush
So thrillingly from Beauty's ruby lip.

TO A CITY PIGEON.

BY N. P. WILLIS.

STOOP to my window, thou beautiful dove!
Thy daily visits have touch'd my love!
I watch thy coming, and list the note
That stirs so low in thy mellow throat,
And my joy is high

To catch the glance of thy gentle eye.

133

134

TO A CITY PIGEON.

Why dost thou sit on the heated eaves,

And forsake the wood with its freshen'd leaves?
Why dost thou haunt the sultry street,

When the paths of the forest are cool and sweet?
How canst thou bear

This noise of people-this sultry air?

Thou alone of the feather'd race

Dost look unscared on the human face;
Thou alone, with a wing to flee,

Dost love with man in his haunts to be;
And "the gentle dove"

Has become a name for trust and love.

A holy gift is thine, sweet bird!

Thou'rt named with childhood's earliest word!
Thou'rt link'd with all that is fresh and wild
In the prison'd thoughts of the city child,
And thy glossy wings

Are its brightest image of moving things.

It is no light chance. Thou art set apart,
Wisely by Him who has tamed thy heart,
To stir the love for the bright and fair
That else were seal'd in this crowded air;
I sometimes dream

Angelic rays from thy pinions stream.

Come then, ever, when daylight leaves
The page I read, to my humble eaves,
And wash thy breast in the hollow spout,
And murmur thy low sweet music out!
I hear and see

Lessons of Heaven, sweet bird, in thee!

HYMN OF NATURE.

BY W. B. Ọ. PEABODY.

GOD of the earth's extended plains!
The dark green fields contented lie:
The mountains rise like holy towers,
Where man might commune with the sky;
The tall cliff challenges the storm
That lowers upon the vale below,
Where shaded fountains send their streams,
With joyous music in their flow.

God of the dark and heavy deep!

The waves lie sleeping on the sands, Till the fierce trumpet of the storm

Hath summon'd up their thundering bands;
Then the white sails are dash'd like foam,
Or hurry, trembling, o'er the seas,
Till, calm'd by thee, the sinking gale
Serenely breathes, Depart in peace.

God of the forest's solemn shade!
The grandeur of the lonely tree,
That wrestles singly with the gale,
Lifts up admiring eyes to thee;
But more majestic far they stand,

When, side by side, their ranks they form,

To wave on high their plumes of green,
And fight their battles with the storm.

God of the light and viewless air!

Where summer breezes sweetly flow,

Or, gathering in their airy might,

The fierce and wintry tempests blow;

136

HYMN OF NATURE.

All-from the evening's plaintive sigh,
That hardly lifts the drooping flower,
To the wild whirlwind's midnight cry-
Breathe forth the language of thy power.

God of the fair and open sky!

How gloriously above us springs
The tented dome, of heavenly blue,
Suspended on the rainbow's rings!
Each brilliant star that sparkles through,
Each gilded cloud that wanders free
In evening's purple radiance, gives
The beauty of its praise to thee,

God of the rolling orbs above!

Thy name is written clearly bright
In the warm day's unvarying blaze,
Or evening's golden shower of light.
For every fire that fronts the sun,

And every spark that walks alone
Around the utmost verge of heaven,
Were kindled at thy burning throne.

God of the world! the hour must come,
And Nature's self to dust return;

Her crumbling altars must decay;

Her incense fires shall cease to burn;
But still her grand and lovely scenes
Have made man's warmest praises flow;
For hearts grow holier as they trace
The beauty of the world below,

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