Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB

He paced along; and, pensively,

Fire raged, -and when the spangled floor Halting beneath a shady tree,

Of ancient ether was no more, Whose moss-grown root might serve for New heavens succeeded, by the dream couch or seat,

brought forth : Fixed on a star his upward eye ;

And all the happy souls that rode Then, from the tenant of the sky

Transfigured through that fresh abode, He turned, and watched with kindred look, Had heretofore, in humble trust, A glow-worm, in a dusky nook,

Shone meekly 'mid their native dust, Apparent at his feet.

The glow-worms of the earth! The murmur of a neighbouring stream

This knowledge, from an angel's voice Induced a soft and slumbrous dream,

Proceeding, made the heart rejoice A pregnant dream, within whose shadowy Of him who slept upon the open lea: bounds

Waking at morn he murmured not; He recognised the earth-born star, And, till life's journey closed, the spot And that which glittered from afar ;

Was to the pilgrim's soul endeared, And (strange to witness !) from the frame

Where by that dream he had been cheered Of the ethereal orb, there came

Beneath the shady tree. Intelligible sounds.

Much did it taunt the humbler light

HINT FROM THE MOUNTAINS That now, when day was fled, and night Hushed the dark earth-fast closing weary FOR CERTAIN POLITICAL PRETENDERS.

eyes, A very reptile could presume

“Who but hails the sight with pleasure To show her taper in the gloom,

When the wings of genius rise, As if in rivalship with one

Their ability to measure Who sate a ruler on his throne

With great enterprise ; Erected in the skies.

But in man was ne'er such daring

As yon hawk exhibits, pairing Exalted star !" the worm replied,

His brave spirit with the war in "Abate this unbecoming pride,

The stormy skies !
Or with a less uneasy lustre shine ;
Thou shrink'st as momently thy rays

“Mark him, how his power he uses,
Are mastered by the breathing haze ; Lays it by, at will resumes !
While neither mist, nor thickest cloud Mark, ere for his haunt he chooses
That shapes in heaven its murky shroud,

Clouds and utter glooms!
Hath power to injure mine.

There he wheels in downward mazes;
Sunward now his flight he raises,

Catches fire, as seems, and blazes “But not for this do I aspire

With uninjured plumes !"
To match the spark of local fire,
That at my will burns on the dewy lawn,

ANSWER.
With thy acknowledged glories ;-No!
Yet, thus upbraided, I may show

“Stranger, 'tis no act of courage What favours do attend me here,

Which aloft thou dost discern; Till, like thyself, I disappear

No bold bird gone forth to forage Before the purple dawn.

'Mid the tempest stern;

But such mockery as the nations
When this in modest guise was said, See, when public perturbations
Across the welkın seemed to spread

Lift men from their native stations,
A boding sound-for aught but sleep unfit! Like yon TUFT OF FERN;
Hills quaked—the rivers backward ran-
That star, so proud of late, looked wan; “Such it is;—the aspiring creature
And reeled with visionary stir

Soaring on undaunted wing
In the blue depth, like Lucifer

(So you fancied) is by nature Cast headlong to the pit !

A dull helpless thing,

Dry and withered, light and yellow;
That to be the tempest's fellow!
Wait and you shall see how hollow

Its endeavouring !"

ON SEEING A NEEDLECASE IN

THE FORM OF A HARP,

THE WORK OF E. M. S.

FROWNs are on every muse's face,
STRAY PLEASURES.

Reproaches from their lips are sent,

That mimickry should thus disgrace Pleasure is spread through the earth

The noble instrument.
In stray.şifts, to be claimed by whoever shall

find.
By their floating mill,

A very harp in all but size!
That lies dead and still,

Needles for strings in apt gradation! Behold yon prisoners three,

Minerva's self would stigmatize The miller with two dames, on the breast

The unclassic profanation. of the Thames !

[them all;
The platform is small, but gives room for Even her own needle that subdued
And tney're dancing merrily.

Arachne's rival spirit,
From the shore come the notes

Though wrought in Vulcan's happiest mood,

Like station could not merit. To their mill where it floats, To their house and their mill tethered fast; To the small wooden isle where, their work And this, too, from the laureate's child, to beguile,

[given;- A living lord of melody!
They from morning to even take whatever is How will her sire be reconciled
And many a blithe day they have past.

To the refined indignity?
In sight of the spires,
All alive with the fires

I spake, when whispered a low voice,
Of the sun going down to his rest,

" Bard ! moderate your ire ; in the broad open eye of the solitary sky, Spirits of all degrees rejoice They dance,-there are three, as jocund as

In presence of the lyre.
free,
While they dance on the calm river's breast. “The minstrels of pygmean bands,

Dwarf genii, moonlight-loving fays,
Men and maidens wheel,

Have shells to fit their tiny hands
They themselves make the reel, And suit their slender lays.
And their music's a prey which they seize;
It plays not for them, —what matter? 'tis
theirs;

[cares,

· Some, still more delicate of ear, And if they had care, it has scattered their

Have lutes (believe my words) While they dance, crying, “Long as ye

Whose frarnework is of gossamer,
please!"

While sunbeams are the chords.
They dance not for me,

Gay sylphs this miniature will court, Yet mine is their glee!

Made vocal by their brushing wings, Thus pleasure is spread through the earth And sullen gnomes will learn to sport in stray gifts, to be claimed by whoever Around its polished strings; shall find;

[kind, Thus a rich loving-kindness, redundantly Moves all nature to gladness and mirth.

Whence strains to love-sick maiden dear,

While in her lonely bower she tries
The showers of the spring

To cheat the thought she cannot cheer,
Rouse the birds, and they sing;

By fanciful embroideries. If the wind do but stir for his proper delight, Each leaf, that and this, bis neighbour will "Trust, angry bard! a knowing sprite, kiss;

[his brother; Nor think the harp her lot deplores; Each wave, one and t'other, speeds after Though 'mid the stars the lyre shines bright, They are happy, for that is their right! Love stoops as fondly as he soars."

Happier, far happier is thy lot and ours ! ADDRESS TO MY INFANT

Even now-To solemnize thy helpless state, DAUGHTER,

And to enliven in the mind's regard ON BEING REMINDED, THAT SHE WAS A Resemblances, or contrasts, that connect,

Thy passive beauty-parallels have risen, MONTH OLD ON THAT DAY.

Within the region of a father's thoughts, Hast thou then survived, Thee and thy

mate and sister of the sky. Mild offspring of infirm humanity, And first;—thy sinless progress, through a Meek infant! among all forlornest things

world The most forlorn, one life of that bright star, By sorrow darkened and by care disturbed, The second glory of the heavens? Thou Apt likeness bears to hers, through gathered hast:

clouds, Already hast survived that great decay; Moving untouched in silver purity, That transformation through the wide earth And cheering oft-times their reluctant felt,

gloom.

(stain: and by all nations. In that Being's sight Fair are ye both, and both are free from From whom the race of human kind proceed, But thou, how leisurely thou fill'st thy horn A thousand years are but as yesterday; With brightness !-- leaving her to post And one day's narrow circuit is to Him along, Not less capacious than a thousand years. And range about-disquieted in change, But what is time? What outward glory? And still impatient of the shape she wears. Neither

Once up, once down the hill, one journey, A measure is of Thee, whose claims extend babe, Through “heaven's eternal year."-Yet That will suffice thee; and it seems that now hail to thee,

(methinks, Thou hast fore-knowledge that such task Frail, feeble monthling !-by that name,

is thine; Thy scanty breathing-time is portioned out Thou travell'st so contentedly, and sleep'st Not idly. - Hadst thou been of Indian birth, In such a heedless peace. Alas! full soon Couched on a casual bed of moss and leaves, Hath this conception, grateful to behold, And rudely canopied by leafy boughs, Changed countenance, like an object sullied Or to the churlish elements exposed On the blank plains,—the coldness of the By breathing mist! and thine appears to be night,

A mournful labour, while to her is given Or the night's darkness, or its cheerful face Hope-and a renovation without end. Of beauty, by the changing moon adorned, That smile forbids the thought;—for on Would, with imperious admonition, then

thy face

(dawn, Have scored thine age, and punctually Smiles are beginning, like the beams of timed

To shoot and circulate;-smiles have there Thine infant history, on the minds of those been scen, Who might have wandered with thee.- Tranquil assurances that Heaven supports Mother's love,

The feeble motions of thy life, and cheers Nor less than mother's love in other breasts, Thy loneliness;--or shall those smiles be Will, among us warm clad and warmly called housed,

Feelers of love, -put forth as if to explore Do for thee what the finger of the heavens This untried world, and to prepare thy way Doth all too often harshly execute. Through a strait passage intricate and dim? For thy unblest coevals, amid wilds Such are they, - and the same are tokens, Where fancy hath small liberty to grace signs,

[arrived, The affections, to exalt them or.refine ; Which, when the appointed season hath And the maternal sympathy itself, Joy, as her holiest language, shall adopt; Though strong, is, in the main, a joyless tie And reason's godlike power be proud to Of naked instinct, wound about the heart.

o er

own.

86

Poems of the Imagination.

From the watch-towers of Helvellyn; Awed, delighted, and amazed:

THERE was a boy; ye knew him well, ye,

cliffs And islands of Winander! many a time, At evening, when the earliest stars began To move along the edges of the hills, Rising or setting, would he stand alone, Beneath the trees, or by the glimmering lake; And there, with fingers interwoven, both hands

(mouth Pressed closely palm to palm and to his Uplifted, he, as through an instrument, Blew mimic hootings to the silent owls, That they might answer him. And they

would shout Across the watery vale, and shout again, Responsive to his call, —with quivering peals,

[loud And long halloos, and screams, and echoes Redoubled and redoubled; concourse wild Of mirth and jocund din! And, when it

chanced That pauses of deep silence mocked his skill, Then, sometimes, in that silence, while he

hung Listening, a gentle shock of mild surprise Has carried far into his heart the voice Of mountain torrents; or the visible scene Would enter unawares into his mind With all its solemn imagery, its rocks, Its woods, and that uncertain heaven,

received Into the bosom of the steady lake. This boy was taken from his mates, and died

[old. In childhood, ere he was full twelve years Fair is the spot, most beautiful the vale Where he was born: the grassy church-yard

hangs Upon a slope above the village school; And through that church-yard when my

way has led At evening, I believe, that oftentimes A long half-hour together I have stood Mute-looking at the grave in which he

lies !

Potent was the spell that bound thee,
Not unwilling to obey ;
For blue ether's arms, flung round thee,
Stilled the pantings of dismay.
Lo! the dwindled woods and meadows !
What a vast abyss is there!
Lo! the clouds, the solemn shadows,
And the glistenings-heavenly fair !
And a record of commotion
Which a thousant ridges yield;
Ridge, and gulf, and distant ocean
Gleaming like a silver shield!
Take thy flight;—possess, inherit
Alps or Andes--they are thine !
With the morning's roseate spirit,
Sweep their length of snowy line;
Or survey the bright dominiors
In the gorgeous colours drest,
Flung from off the purple pinions,
Evening spreads throughout the west !
Thine are all the choral fountains
Warbling in each sparry vault
Of the untrodden lunar mountains ;
Listen to their songs !-or halt,
To Niphate's top invited,
Whither spiteful Satan steered ;
Or descend where the ark alighted,
When the green earth re-appeared ;
For the power of hills is on thee,
As was witnessed through thine eye
Then, when old Helvellyn won thee
To confess their majesty!

TO ON HER FIRST ASCENT TO THE SUMMIT

OF HELVELLYN. INMATE of a mountain-dwelling, Thou hast clomb aloft, and gazed,

TO THE CUCKOO. O BLITHE new-comer ! I have heard, I hear thee and rejoice. O Cuckoo! shall I call thee bird, Or but a wandering voice? While I am lying on the gras Thy twofold shout I hear, From hill to hill it seems to pass, At once far off and near.

soars

Though babbling only, to the vale, Built round by those white clouds, Of sunshine and of flowers,

enormous clouds, Thou bringest unto me a tale

Still deepens its unfathomable depth. Of visionary hours.

At length the vision closes ; and the mind,

Not undisturbed by the delight it feels, Thrice welcome, darling of the spring! Which slowly settles into peaceful calm, Even yet thou art to me

Is left to muse upon the solemn scene.
No bird: but an invisible thing,
A voice, a mystery.
The same whom in my school-boy days

WATER-FOWL.
I listened to; that cry

“Let me be allowed the aid of verse to describe Which made me look a thousand ways the evolutions which these visitants sometimes In bush, and tree, and sky.

perform, on a fine day towards the close of

winter."- Extract from the Author's Book on To seek thee did I often rove

the Lakes. Through woods and on the green ; MARK how the feathered tenants of the flood, And thou wert still a hope, a love; With grace of motion that might scarcely Still longed for, never seen.

Inferior to angelical, prolong (seem

Their curious pastime ! shaping in mid air And I can listen to thee yet ;

(And sometimes with ambitious wing that Can lie upon the plain And listen, till I do beget

High as the level of the mountain tops) That golden time again.

A circuit ampler than the lake beneath,

Their own domain ;- but ever, while intent O blessed bird ! the earth we pace On tracing and retracing that large round, Again appears to be

Their jubilant activity evolves An unsubstantial faery place ;

Hundreds of curves and circles, to and fro, That is fit home for thee!

Upward and downward, progress intricate
Yet unperplexed, as if one spirit swayed
Their indefatigable flight. — 'Tis done-

Ten times, or more, I fancied it had ceased;
A NIGHT-PIECE.

But lo! the vanished company again
The sky is overcast

Ascending ;-they approach—I hear their
wings

(sound With a continuous cloud of texture close.

Faint, faint at first ; and then an eager Heavy and wan, all whitened by the moon, Past in a moment--and as faint again! Which through that veil is indistinctly seen, They tempt the sun to sport amid their A dull, contracted circle, yielding light

plumes ; So feebly spread, that not a shadow falls, Chequering the ground-from rock, plant, To show them a fair image ;-'tis them

They tempt the water, or the gleaming ice, tree, or tower.

selves,

(plain, At length a pleasant instantaneous gleam Startles the pensive traveller while he treads Painted more soft and fair as they descend

Their own fair forms, upon the glimmering His lonesome path, with unobserving eye. Bent earthwards : he looks up--the clouds Up with a sally and a flash of speed,

Almost to touch ;—then up again aloft, are split

As if they scorned both resting place and Asunder,--and above his head he sees

rest ! The clear moon, and the glory of the heavens.

YEW-TREES. There, in a black blue vault she sails along, Followed by multitudes of stars, that, small There is a yew-tree, pride of Lorton Vale, And sharp, and bright, along the dark abyss Which to this day stands single, in the midst Drive as she drives ;-how fast they wheel of its own darkness, as it stood of yore, away,

Not loth to furnish weapons for the bands Yet vanish not !-the wind is in the tree, Of Umfraville or Percy ere they marched But they are silent ;-still they roll along To Scotland's heaths; or those that crossed Immeasurably distant;-and the vault, the sca

« AnteriorContinuar »