Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB

tive than that of their cure, and the emancipation of my country
from the superinhuman oppression under which she has so long and
too patiently travailed; and I confidently hope, that, wild and chi-
merical as it may appear, there are still union and strength in Ire-
land sufficient to accomplish this noblest enterprise.
7.

All that breathe
Will share thy destiny. The gay will laugh
When thou art gone, the solemn brood of care
Plod on, and each one as before will chase
His favorite phantom; yet all these shall leave
Their mirth and their employments, and shall come
And make their bed with thee. As the long train
Of ages glide away, the sons of men,
The youth in life's green spring, and he who goes
In the full strength of years, matron and maid,
And the sweet babe, and the gray-headed man,-
Shall one by one be gathered to thy side,
By those who in their turn shall follow them.

So live, that when thy summons comes to join
The innumerable caravan, that moves
To that mysterious realm, where each shall take
His chamber in the silent halls of death,
Thou go not, like the quarry-slave at night,
Scourged to his dungeon; but, sustained and soothed
By an unfaltering trust, approach thy grave,
Like one who wraps the drapery of his couch

About him, and lies down to pleasant dreams. 8. Go, Sun, while Mercy holds me up

On Nature's awful waste
To drink this last and bitter cup

Of grief that man shall taste-
Go, tell that night that hides thy face,
Thou saw'st the last of Adam's race,

On earth's sepulchral clod,
The dark’ning universe defy
To quench his immortality,

Or shake his trust in God!

9. Two hundred years !-two hundred years !

How much of human power and pride,
What glorious hopes, what gloomy fears,

Have sunk beneath their noiseless tide!-
God of our fathers,-in whose sight

The thousand years, that sweep away
Man, and the traces of his might,

Are but the break and close of day,–
Grant us that love of truth sublime,

That love of goodness and of thee,
That makes thy children, in all time,

To share thine own eternity.

10. Thy path is high in heaven ;-we cannot gaze

On the intense of light that girds thy car;
There is a crown of glory in thy rays,

Which bears thy pure divinity afar,

To mingle with the equal light of star;
For thou, so vast to us, art, in the whole,

One of the sparks of night that fire the air;
And, as round thy centre planets roll,
So thou, too, hast thy path around the central soul.

11. O Thou that rollest above, round as the shield of my fathers ! whence are thy beams, 0 Sun! thy everlasting light? Thou comest forth in thy awful beauty; the stars hide themselves in the sky; the moon, cold and pale, sinks in the western wave. But thou thyself movest above! Who can be a companion of thy course? The oaks of the mountains fall: the mountains themselves decay with years : the ocean shrinks and grows again: the moon herself is lost in the heavens: but thou art for ever the same, rejoicing in the brightness of thy course. When the world is dark with tempests, when thunder rolls, and lightning flies, thou lookest in thy beauty from the clouds, and laughest at the storm.But to Ossian thou lookest in vain; for he beholds thy beams no more, whether thy yellow hair floats on the eastern clouds, or thou tremblest at the gates of the west. But thou art, perhaps, like me, for a season; thy years will have an end. Thou shalt sleep in thy clouds, careless of the voice of the morning. Exult then, O Sun! in the strength of thy youth.–Age is dark and unlovely: it is like the glimmering light of the moon, when it shines through broken clouds, and the mist is on the hills; when the blast of the north is on the plain, and the traveler shrinks in the midst of his journey.

12. Night, sable goddess! from her ebon throne,

In rayless majesty, now stretches forth
Her leaden sceptre o'er a slumbering world.
Silence how dead! and darkness how profound !
Nor eye nor listening ear can object find :
Creation sleeps. "Tis as the general pulse
Of life stood still, and Nature made a pause,
An awful pause, prophetic of her end.

13. This is the place, the centre of the grove:

Here stands the oak, the monarch of the wood.
How sweet and solemn is this midnight scene!
The silver moon, unclouded, holds her way
Through skies where I could count each little star;
The fanning west-wind scarcely stirs the leaves;
The river rushing o'er its pebbled bed,
Imposes silence with a shrilly sound.-
In such a place as this, at such an hour,
(If ancestry can be in aught believed,)
Descending spirits have conversed with man,
And told the secrets of the world unknown.

Gavety, &c.

Gayety is the exact opposite of dignity, and consequently demands another class of elements for its expression. Sprightliness of sentiment therefore, calls into requisition the Natural Voice, Quick Time, and Short Quantity, the Radical or Vanishing Stress, and the frequent recurrence of the Alternate Phrase of Melody. Facetiousness, Eager Argument, and Earnest Description employ these symbols.

EXAMPLES.

[merged small][ocr errors]

Those two together long had lived
In mansion prudently contrived,
Where neither tree nor house could bar
The free detection of a star;
And nigh an ancient obelisk
Was raised by him, found out by Fisk,
On which was written, not in words,
But hieroglyphic mute of birds,
Many rare pithy saws concerning
The worth of astrologic learning.
From top of this there hung a rope,
To which he fastened telescope,
The spectacles with which the stars
He reads in smallest characters.
It happened as a boy, one night,
Did fly his tarsel of a kite,
The strangest long-winged hawk that flies,
That, like a bird of Paradise,
On herald's martlet, has no legs,
Nor hatches young ones, nor lays eggs;
His train was six yards long, milk-white,
At the end of which there hung a light,
Inclosed in lantern, made of paper,
That far off like a star did appear:
This Sydrophel by chance espied,
And with amazement staring wide,
Bless us ! quoth he, what dreadful wonder
Is that appears in Heaven yonder ?
A comet, and without a beard !
Or star that ne'er before appeared ?
I'm certain 'tis not in the scrowl
Of all those beasts, and fish, and fowl
W which like Indian plantations,
The learned stock the constellations ;
Nor those that drawn for signs have been
To the houses where the planets inn.

It must be supernatural,
Unless it be that cannon-ball
That, shot i' th' air point-blank upright,
Was borne to that prodigious height;
That, learned philosophers maintain,
It ne'er came backwards down again,
But in the airy regions yet
Hangs, like the body of Mahomet:
For if it be above the shade
That by the earth's round bulk is made,
'Tis probable it may from far

Appear no bullet, but a star.
2. My poem's epic, and is meant to be

Divided in twelve books; each book containing, With love, and war, a heavy gale at sea,

A list of ships and captains, and kings reigning,
New characters; the episodes are three:

A panorama view of hell's in training,
After the style of Virgil and of Homer,
So that my name of epic's no misnomer.
All these things will be specified in time,

With strict regard to Aristotle's rules ;
The vade mecum of the true sublime,

Which makes so many poets, and some fools ;
Prose poets like blank-verse, I'm fond of rhyme,

Good workmen never quarrel with their tools; I've got new mythological machinery, And very handsome supernatural scenery.

3. 'Twas the night before Christmas, when all thro' the house

Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse:
The stockings were hung by the chimney with care,
In hopes that St. Nicholas soon would be there;
The children were nestled all snug in their beds,
While visions of sugar-plums danced through their heads ;
And mamma in her 'kerchief and I in my cap,
Had just settled our brains for a long winter's nap-

« AnteriorContinuar »