Page images
PDF

dren. There runs not a drop of my blood in the veins of any living creature. This called on me for revenge. I have sought it. I have killed many. I have glutted my vengeance. For my country, I rejoice at the beams of peace. But do not think that mine is the joy of fear. Logan never felt fear. Logan will not turn on his heel to save his life. Who is there to mourn for Logan * Not one!

—o-
5. MORAL COSMETICS. – Horace Smith. Born, 1779; died, 1849.

YE who would save your features florid,

Lithe limbs, bright eyes, unwrinkled forehead,

From Age's devastation horrid,
Adopt this plan, –

'T will make, in climate cold or torrid,
A hale old man :

Avoid, in youth, luxurious diet;
Restrain the passions' lawless riot;
Devoted to domestic quiet,
Be wisely gay;
So shall ye, spite of Age's fiat,
Resist decay.

Seek not, in Mammon's worship, pleasure;

But find your richest, dearest treasure,

In books, friends, music, polished leisure:
The mind, not sense,

Made the sole scale by which to measure
Your opulence.

This is the solace, this the science,
Life's purest, sweetest, best appliance,
That disappoints not man's reliance,
Whate'er his state;
But challenges, with calm defiance,
Time, fortune, fate.

—o-
6. THE PAUPER'S DEATH-BED. — Caroline Bowles Southey

TREAD softly, - bow the head, –
In reverent silence bow;

No passing bell doth toll,

Yet an immortal soul
Is passing now.

Stranger, however great,
With holy reverence bow; —

There's one in that poor shed, –

One by that paltry bed, -
Greater than thou.

Beneath that beggar's roof,
Lo! death doth keep his state;

Enter, — no crowds attend;

Enter, — no guards defend
This palace gate.

That pavement, damp and cold,
No smiling courtiers tread;

One silent woman stands,

Lifting, with meagre hands,
A dying head.

No mingling voices sound, –
An infant wail alone;

A sob suppressed, - again

That short, deep gasp, and then
The parting groan.

O, change' — O, wondrous change! —
Burst are the prison bars, –

This moment, there, so low,

So agonized, and now
Beyond the stars!

O, change' — stupendous change
There lies the soulless clod;

The Sun eternal breaks, –

The new immortal wakes, –
Wakes with his God!

7. HOPE. – Sarah F. Adams.

Hope leads the child to plant the flower, the man to sow the seed;
Nor leaves fulfilment to her hour, but prompts again to deed.
And ere upon the old man's dust the grass is seen to wave,
We look through falling tears to trust Hope's sunshine on the grave.
O no! it is no flattering lure, — no fancy weak or fond, –
When hope would bid us rest secure in better life beyond.
Nor loss, nor shame, nor grief, nor sin, her promise may gainsay;
The voice divine hath spoke within, and God did ne'er betray.
–0–
8. DEATH. – Horace Smith.

FATE! Fortune! Chance! whose blindness, hostility or kindness,
Play such strange freaks with human destinies, –
Contrasting poor and wealthy, the life-diseased and healthy,
The blessed, the cursed, the witless and the wise, –
Ye have a master; one, who mars what ye have done;
Levelling all that move beneath the sun, –
Death !

Take courage, ye that languish beneath the withering anguish
Of open wrong, or tyrannous deceit;
There comes a swift redresser to punish your oppressor,
And lay him prostrate, helpless, at your feet!
0, Champion strong ' Righter of wrong!
Justice, equality, to thee belong, —
Death !

Where Conquest crowns his quarrel, and the victor, wreathed with
laurel,
While trembling Nations bow beneath his rod,
On his guarded throne reposes, in living apotheosis,
The Lord's anointed and earth's demigod, –
What form of fear croaks in his ear
“The victor's car is but a funeral bier " ?
Death !

Who, spite of guards and yeomen, steel phalanx and cross-bowmen,
Leaps, at a bound, the shuddering castle's moat,
The tyrant's crown down dashes, his sceptre treads to ashes,
With rattling finger grasps him by the throat,
His breath out-wrings, and his corse down flings
To the dark pit where grave-worms feed on kings?—
Death !

When the murderer's undetected, when the robber's unsuspected,
And night has veiled his crime from every eye, –
When nothing living daunts him, and no fear of justice haunts him,
Who wakes his conscience-stricken agony
Who makes him start, with his withering dart,
And wrings the secret from his bursting heart 2–

[ocr errors]

To those who pine in sorrow, whose wretchedness can borrow
No moment's ease from an y human act, —
To the widow comfort-spurning, to the slave for freedom yearning,
To the diseased, with cureless anguish racked,—
Who brings release, and whispers peace,
And points to realms where pain and sorrow cease?—
Death !

9. LACHRY MOSE WRITERS. Horace Smith.

YE human screech-owls, who delight
To herald woe, – whose day is night,
Whose mental food is misery and moans, –
If ye must needs uphold the pall,
And walk at Pleasure's funeral,
Be Mutes—and publish not your cries and groans.

Ye say that Earth's a charnel; Life,
Incessant wretchedness and strife;
That all is doom below and wrath above;
The sun and moon, sepulchral lamps;
The sky, a vault whose baleful damps
Soon blight and moulder all that live and love.

Ungrateful and calumnious crew,
Whose plaints, as impious as untrue,
From morbid intellects derive their birth, –
Away! begone, to mope and moan,
And weep in some asylum lone,
Where ye may rail unheard at Heaven and Earth!

Earth ! on whose stage, in pomp arrayed,
Life's joyous interlude is played, -
Earth ! with thy pageants ever new and bright,
Thy woods and waters, hills and dales,
How dead must be the soul that fails
To see and bless thy beauties infinite!

Man! whose high intellect supplies
A never failing Paradise
Of holy and enrapturing pursuits;
Whose heart's a fount of fresh delight, —
Pity the Cynics, who would blight
Thy godlike gifts, and rank thee with the brutes!

O, Woman who from realms above
Hast brought to Earth a Heaven of love,
Terrestrial angel, beautiful as pure!
No pains, no penalties, dispense
On thy traducers, – their offence
Is its own punishment, most sharp and sure.

Father and God! whose love and might To every sense are blazoned bright On the vast three-leaved Bible, – Earth, Sea, Sky, Pardon the impugners of Thy laws, Expand their hearts, and give them cause To bless the exhaustless grace they now deny!

10. THE SANCTUARY. – Horace Smith. Adapted.
For man there still is left one sacred charter;
One refuge still remains for human woes.
Victim of care! or persecution's martyrs
Who seek'st a sure asylum from thy foes,
Learn that the holiest, safest, purest, best,
Is man's own breast !

There is a solemn sanctuary, founded
By God himself; not for transgressors meant;
But that the man oppressed, the spirit-wounded,
And all beneath the world's injustice bent,
Might turn from outward wrong, turmoil and din,
To peace within.

Each bosom is a temple, – when its altar,
The living heart, is unprofaned and pure,
Its verge is hallowed; none need fear or falter
Who thither fly; it is an ark secure,
Winning, above a world o'erwhelmed with wrath,
Its peaceful path.

[merged small][merged small][ocr errors]

Een in the flesh, the spirit disembodied,
Unchecked by time and space, may soar elate,
In silent awe to commune with the Godhead, -
Or the millennium reign anticipate,
When Earth shall be all sanctity and love,
Like Heaven above.

How sweet to turn from anguish, guilt and madness,
From scenes where strife and tumult never cease,
To that Elysian world of bosomed gladness,
Where all is concord, charity and peace;
And, sheltered from the storm, the soul may rest
On its own nest

When, spleenful as the sensitive Mimosa,
We shrink from Winter's touch and Nature's gloom,
There may we conjure up a Wallombrosa,
Where groves and bowers in Summer beauty bloom,
And the heart dances in the sunny glade
Fancy has made.

But, would we dedicate to nobler uses
This bosom sanctuary, let us there
Hallow our hearts from all the world's abuses;
While high and charitable thoughts, and prayer,
May teach us gratitude to God, combined
With love of kind.

« PreviousContinue »