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No friends .with soft discourse his pain beguile,
Nor promise hope till sickness wears a smile.

Crabbe.

waiTTEN IN THE

PROSPECT OF DEATH,

Sad solitary Thought, who keeps thy vigils,

Thy solemn vigils, in the sick man's mind;

Communing lonely with his sinking soul,

And musing on the dubious glooms that lie

In dim obscurity before him,—thee,

Wrapt in thy dark magnificence, I call

At this still midnight hour, this awful season,

When on my bed, in wakeful restlessness,

I turn me wearisome; while all around,

All, all, save me, sink in forgetfulness;

I only wake to watch the sickly taper

Which lights me to my tomb.—Yea, 'tis the hand

Of death I feel press heavy on my vitals,

Slow sapping the warm current of existence.

My moments now are few—the sand of life

Ebbs fastly to its finish Yet a little,

And the last fleeting particle will fall,

Silent, unseen, unnoticed, unlamented.

Come then, sad Thought, and let us meditate

While meditate we may.—We have now

But a small portion of what men call time

To hold communion; for even now the knife,

The separating knife, I feel divide

The tender bond that binds my soul to earth.

Yes, I must die—I feel that I must die;

And though to me has life been dark and dreary,

Though hope for me has smiled but to deceive,

And disappointment still pursued her blandishments,

Yet do I feel my soul recoil within me

As I contemplate the dim gulf of death,

The shuddering void, the awful blank—futurity.

Ay, I had planned full many a sanguine scheme

Of earthly happiness—romantic schemes,

And fraught with loveliness; and it is hard

To feel the hand of death arrest one's steps,

Throw a chill blight o'er all one's budding hopes,

And hurl one's soul untimely to the shades,

Lost in the gaping gulf of blank oblivion.

Fifty years hence, and who will hear of Henry?

Oh! none ;—another busy brood of beings

Will shoot up in the interim, and none

Will hold him in remembrance. I shall sink,

As sinks a stranger in the crowded streets
Of busy London :—Some short bustle's caused,
A few inquiries, and the clouds close in,
And all's forgotten.—On my grassy grave
The men of future times will careless tread,
And read my name upon the sculptured stone;
Nor will the sound, familiar to their ears,
Recall my vanished memory.—I did hope
For better tilings !—I hoped I should not leave
The earth without a vestige ;—fate decrees
It shall be otherwise, and I submit.
Henceforth, oh world, no more of thy desires;
No more of hope I the wanton vagrant hope!
I abjure all—Now other cares engross me,
And my tired soul, with emulative haste,
Looks to its God, and prunes its wings for heaven.

H.K. Withe.

AFFECTATION.

In man or woman, but far most in man,
And most of all in man that ministers
And serves the altar, in my soul I loathe
All affectation. 'Tis my perfect scorn,

Object of my implacable disgust.

What!—will a man play tricks, will he indulge

A silly fond conceit of his fair form

And just proportion, fashionable mein

And pretty face, in presence of his God?

Or will he seek to dazzle me with tropes,

As with the diamond on his lily hand,

And play his brilliant parts before my eyes,

Wihen I am hungry for the bread of life?

He mocks his Maker, prostitutes and shames

His noble office, and, instead of truth,

Displaying his own beauty, starves his flock.

Therefore avaunt all attitude, and stare,

And start theatric, practised at the glass!

I seek divine simplicity in him,

Who handles things divine; and all besides,

Though learned with labour, and tho' much admired

By curious eyes and judgments ill informed,

To me is odious as the nasal twang

Heard at conventicle, where worthy men,

Misled by custom, strain celestial themes

Through the pressed nostril, spectacle-bestrid.

Cowper.

[graphic]

COMPLAINT OF SOLITUDE.

It is not that my lot is low,
That bids this silent tear to flow;
It is not grief that bids me moan,
It is that I am all alone.

In woods and glens I love to roam,
When the tired hedger hies him home;
Or by the woodland pool to rest,
When pale the star looks on its breast.

Yet when the silent evening sighs
With hallowed airs, and sympathies,
My spirit takes another tone,
And sighs that it is all alone.

The Autumn leaf is sear and dead,
It floats upon the water's bed;
I would not be a leaf to die,
Without recording sorrow's sigh.

The woods and winds, with sudden wail,
Tell all the same unvaried tale;

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