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Though in thy face no family-line
Oh! thou wilt be an angel bright!
And when thou goest to heaven again,
Thy vanishing be like the strain How happy must thy parents be
Of airy harp, 60 soft the tone
The ear scarce knows when it is gone!
Thrice blessed he! whose stars design
His spirit pure to lean on thine ;
And watchful share, for days and years, When thy first broken words were heard, Words, that, inspired by Heaven, express'a Thy sorrows, joys, sighs, smiles, and tears! The transports dancing in thy breast !
For good and guiltless as thou art, As for thy smile !-thy lip, chcek, brow,
Some transient griefs will touch thy heart, Even while I gaze, are kindling now.
Griefs that along thy alter'd face
Than ev’n those looks of joy that lie
On the soft cheek of infancy. No! truth, I feel, is in my song:
Though looks, God knows, are cradled there Duteous thy heart's still beatings move
That guilt might cleanse, or sooth despair. To God, to Nature, and to Love! To God !- for thou a harmless child Hast kept his temple undefiled :
Oh! vision fair! that I could be To Nature !—for thy tears and siglas Again, as young, as pure as thee! Obey alone her mysteries:
Vain wish! the rainbow's radiant form To Love !—for fiends of hate might see May view but cannot brave the storm; Thou dwellst in love, and love in thce! Years can bedim the gorgeous dyes What wonder then, though in thy dreams That paint the bird of paradise, Thy face with mystic meaning beams ! And years, so fate hath order'd, roll
Clouds o’er the summer of the soul.
Yet, sometimes, sudden sights of grace, Oh! that my spirit's eye could see
Such as the gladness of thy face, Whence burst those gleams of extacy! O sinless babe! by God are given That light of dreaming soul appears To charm the wanderer back to heaven. To play from thoughts above thy years. Thou smil'st as if thy soul were soaring To heaven, and heaven's God adoring! And who can tell what visions high
No common impulse hath me led May bless an infant's sleeping eye?
To this green spot, thy qniet bed, What brighter throne can brightness find
Where, hy mere gladness overcome, To reign on than an infant's mind,
In sleep thou dreamest of thy home.
When to the lake I would have gone,
A wondrous beauty drew me on,
In glittering fields and moveless trecs,
After a warm and silent shower, Intelligible happiness.
Ere falls on earth the twilight hour.
What led me hither, all can say,
Who, knowing God, his will obey.
Thy slumbers now cannot be long :
Like one who, little given to roam,
Wonders to find herself from home! And live thou surely must; thy life But when a stranger meets thy view, In far too spiritual for the strife
Glistens thine eye with wilder hue. of mortal pain, nor could disease
A moment's thought who I may be, Find heart to prey on smiles like thege. Blends with thy smiles of courtesy.
DURING A CALM.
Fair was that face as break of dawn,
WRITTEN ON THE BANKS OP WASTWATER,
Is this the Lake, for ever dark and loud When the soul's heaven lies calm and bright; With wave and tempest, cataract and cloud ? Till thou awok'st,—then to thine eye Wondrous,oh Nature! is thy sovereign power, Thy whole heart leapt in extacy!
That gives to horror honrs of peaceful mirth;
bower! And lovely is that heart of thine,
Lo! where yon rainbow spans the smiling Or sure these eyes could never shine
earth, With such a wild, yet bashful glee,
And, clothed in glory, through a silent shower Gay, balf-o'ercome timidity!
The mighty Sun comes forth, a godlike birth; Nature has breath'd into thy face
While, 'neath his loving eye, the gentle Lake A spirit of unconscious grace;
Lies like a sleeping child too blest to wake!
WRITTEN AT MIDNIGHT, ON AELM-CRAG. And water blends again with sky.
Go up among the mountains, when the storm
When the soul loves tumultuous solitude, Oh! happy sprite! didst thou but know And through the baunted air each giant form What pleasures through my being flow Of swinging pine, black rock,or ghostly cloud, From thy soft eyes, a holier feeling That veils some fearful cataract tumbling From their blue light could ne'er be stealing,
loud, But thou wouldst be more loth to part, Seems to thy breathless heart with life And give me more of that glad heart!
embued. Oh! gone thou art! and bearest hence 'Mid those gaunt, shapeless things thou art The glory of thy innocence.
And time and space seem living only here.
While sable glooms round Nature's temple SONNETS.
And her dread anthem peals into thy soul.
WRITTEN ON THE BANKS OF WASTWATER,
DURING A STORM. There is a lake hid far among the hills, That raves around the throne of solitude, A cloud lay cradled near the setting sun, Not fed by gentle streams, or playful rills
, A gleam of crimson tinged its braided snow: But headlong cataract and rushing flood. Long had I watched the glory moving on There gleam no lovely hues of hanging wood, O'er the still radiance of the lake below. No spot of sunshine lights her sullen side; Tranquil its spirit seem'd, and floated slow! For horror shaped the wild in wrathful mood, Even in its very motion there was rest: And o'er the tempest heaved the mountain's While every breath of eve that chanced to pride.
blow, If thou art one, in dark presumption blind, Wafted the traveller to the beauteous West. Who vainly deemst no spirit like to thine, Emblem, methought, of the departed soul! That lofty genius deifies thy mind, To whose white robe the gleam of bliss is Fall prostrate here at Nature's stormy shrine,
given ; And as the thunderous scene disturbs thy And by the breath of mercy made to roll
Right onwards to the golden gates of Heaven, Lift thy changed eye, and own how low Where, to the eye of Faith, it peaceful lics,
And tells to man his glorious destinies.
with sky, WRITTEN ON SKIDDAW, DURING A TEMPEST.
Rocks of wild majesty, and elfin streams.
How strange, methought, I should have lived It was a dreadful day, when late I pass'd O’er thy dim vastness, SKIDDAW!- Mist and Nor ever worshipp'd Nature's altar here!
Strange! say not so—hid from the world Each subject Fell obscured, and rushing blast
and thee, To thee made darling music, wild and loud, Though in the midst of life their spirits move, Thou Mountain-Monarch! Rain in torrents Thousands enjoy in holy liberty
The silent Eden of unenvied Love!
to die! Man's charter'd pride, the Liberty of Soul? I gazed upon them with a pensive eye,
For on that dim and melancholy strand,
I saw the image of Man's destiny.
So hurry we, right onwards, thoughtlessly,
Unto the coast of that Eternal Land ! I wander'd lonely, like a pilgrim sad, Where, like the worthless billows in their O'er mountains known but to the eagle's gaze;
glee, Yet, my hush'd heart, with Nature's beauty The first faint touch unable to withstand,
We melt at once into Eternity. Slept in the shade, or gloried in the blaze. O Thou who weighst the waters in thine Romantic vales stole winding to my eye
hand, In gradual loveliness, like rising dreams ; Myawe-struck Spirit puts her trust in Thee.
EXTRACTS FROM THE CITY OF THE PLAGUE.
Act I. SCENE I.
Or cleanse, but, whirlwind - like, to sweep
away Old Man.
-Three months ago The tents of princes and the men of war. Within my soul I heard a mighty sound Know you will meet with in the city? As of a raging river, day and night Together will ye walk, through long, long Triumphing through the city:'twas the voice
streets, Of London sleepless in magnificence. All standing silent as a midnight-church. This morn I stood and listen'd. Art thou You will hear nothing but the brown red grass dead,
Rustling beneath your feet; the very beating Queen of the world ! I ask'd my awe-struck of your own hearts will awe you; the small heart,
voice And not one breath of life amid the silence of that vain bauble, idly counting time, Disturb’d the empire of mortality.
Will speak a solemn language in the desert. Death's icy hand hath frozen, with a touch, Look up to heaven, and there the sultry The fountain of the river that made glad
clouds, The City of the Isle !
Still threatening thunder, lower with grim Sin brought the judgment: it was terrible. delight, Go read your Bible, young men; hark to him As if the Spirit of the Plague dwelt there, Who, in a vision, saw the Lion rage Darkening the city with the shadows of death. Amid the towers of Judah, while the people Fell on their faces, and the hearts of kings
-Stand aloof. Perish'd, and prophets wonderd in their fear. And let the Pest's triumphal chariot Then came the dry wind from the wilderness, Have open way advancing to the tomb. Towards the hill of Sion, not to fan See how he mocks the pomp and pageantry
Of earthly kings! A miserable cart, And wildly to thy native melodies
song, And onwards urged by a wan meagre wretch, And let it be, even 'mid our merriment, Doom'd never to return from the foul pit, Most sad, most slow, that when its music dies, Whither, with oaths, he drives his load of We may address ourselves to revelry, horror.
More passionate from the calm,as men leap up Would you look in? Gray hairs and golden To this world's business from some heavenly tresses,
dream. Wan shrivell’d cheeks that have not smiled
And many a rosy visage smiling still;
MARY GRAY'S SONG. Bodies in the noisome weeds of beggary wrapt,
I walk'd by mysel' ower the sweet braes o' With age decrepit, and wasted to the bone;
Yarrow, And youthful frames, august and beautiful, When the earth wi' the gowans o' July In spite of mortal pangs,—there lie they all
was drest; Embraced in ghastliness ! But look not long, But the sang o' the bonny burn sounded For kaply, ʼmid the faces glimmering there,
like sorrow, The well-known cheek of some beloved Round ilka house cauld as a last simmer's friend
nest. Will meet thy gaze, or some small snow
white hand, Bright with the ring that holds her lovers I look'd through the lift o'the blue smiling hair.
morning, But never ae wee cloud o mist could I see On its way up to heaven, the cottage adorn
ing, Act I. SCENE IV.
Hanging white over the green o’ its shel
tering tree. The street. - A long table covered with glasses.
- A party of young men and women carousing
By the outside I ken’d that the inn was
forsaken, Young Man. I rise to give, most noble That nae tread o' footsteps was heard on President,
the floor; The memory of a man well known to all, O loud craw'd the cock whare was nane to Who by keen jest, and merry anecdote,
awaken, Sharp repartee, and humorous remark And the wild-raven croak'd on the seat by Most biting in its solemn gravity,
the door! Much cheer'd our out-door table, and dispellid The fogs which this rude visitor the Plagne Oft breathed across the brightest intellect. Sic silence — sic lonesomeness, oh, were But two days past, our ready laughter chased
bewildering! His various stories; and it cannot be I heard nae lass singing when herding That we have in our gamesome revelries
her sheep; Forgotten Harry Wentworth. His chair I met nae bright garlands o' wee rosy stands
children E.mpty at your right hand—as if expecting Dancing on to the schoql-house just waken'd That jovial wassailer-but he is gone
frae sleep. Into cold narrow quarters. Well, I deem The grave did never silence with its dust A tongue more eloquent; but since 'tis so, I pass’d by the school-house—when strangers And store of boon companions yet survive,
were coming, There is no reason to be sorrowful;
Whose windows with glad faces seem'd Therefore let us drink unto his memory
all alive; With acclamation, and a merry peal Ae moment I hearken'd, but heard nae sweet Such as in life he loved.
humming, Master of Revels. 'Tis the first death For a night o' dark vapour can silence Hath been amongst us, therefore let us drink
the hive. His memory in silence. Young Man. Be it so.
[They all rise, and drink their I pase’d by the pool where the lasses at glasses in silence.
daw 'ing Master of Revels. Sweet Mary Gray! Thou Used to bleach their white garments wi' hast a silver voice,
daffin and din ;
But the foam in the silence o' nature was And fifty brown hillocks wi' fresh mould fa'ing,
were swelling And nae laughing rose loud through the Ower the kirk-yard o' Denholm, last simroar of the linn.
mer sae green.
I gaed into a small town—when sick o' my The infant had died at the breast o' its roaming
mither; Whare ance play'd the viol, the tabor, The cradle stood still at the mitherless bed;
At play the bairn sunk in the hand of its 'Twas the hour loved by Labour, the saft
brither; smiling gloaming,
At the fauld on the mountain the shepherd Yet the green round the Cross-stane was
lay dead. empty and mute.
Oh! in spring-time 'tis eerie, when winter To the yellow-flower'd meadow, and scant
rigs o'tillage, And birds should be glinting ower forest The sheep a' neglected had come frae the
and lea, glen;
When the lint-white and mavis the yellow The cushat-dow coo'd in the midst o' the
leaves cover, village,
And nae blackbird sings loud frae the tap And the swallow had flown to the dwell
o' his tree. ings o' men !
But eerier far, when the spring-land rejoices, Sweed Denholm! not thus, when I lived in And laughs back to heaven with gratitude thy bosom,
bright, Thy heart lay so still the last night o' the To hearken ! and naewhere hear sweet human week;
voices ! Then nane was sae weary that love would When man's soul is dark in the season o' nae rouse him,
light! And Grief gaed to dance with a laugh on his cheek.
Master of Revels. We thank thee, sweet
one! for thy mournful song. Sic thoughts wet my een – as the moonshine
It seems, in the olden time, this very Plague On the kirk-tower that rose up sae silent Visited thy hills and valleys, and the voice
Of lamentation wail'd along the streams The wan ghastly light on the dial was
That now flow on through their wild para
dise, streaming, But the still finger tauld not the hour of Murmuring their songs of joy. All that
survive the night.
In memory of that melancholy year,
When died so many brave and beautiful, The mirk-time pass’d slowly in siching and Are some sweet mournful airs, some shepweeping,
herd's lay I waken'd, and nature lay silent in mirth; Most touching in simplicity, and none Ower a' holy Scotland the Sabbath was Fitter to make one sad amid his mirth
Than the tune yet faintly singing through And Heaven in beauty came down on the
our souls. earth.
Mary Gray. 0! that I ne'er had sung it
but at home
Unto The morning smiled on -- but nae kirk-bell Their Mary's tones were always musical.
my aged parents! to whose ear was ringing,
I hear my own self singing o'er the moor, Nae plaid or blue bonnet came down frae
Beside my native cottage,-most unlike
The voice which Edward Walsingham has The kirk-door was shut, but nae psalm-tune
praised, was singing, And I miss'd the wee voices sae sweet and
It is the angel-voice of innocence,
2d Woman. I thought this cant were out sae shrill.
of fashion now.
But it is well; there are some simple sonla, I look'd ower the quiet o’ Death's empty Even yet, who melt at a frail maiden's tean
And give her credit for sincerity. The lav'rock walk'd mute 'mid the sor- She thinks her eyes quite killing while she rowful scene,