Page images
PDF

Was this what the seer of the cave had foretold ?

Dim, dim through the phantom the moon shot a gleam ; 'Twas Reuben, but ah! he was deathly and cold,

And fleeted away like the spell of a dream! Twice, thrice did he rise, and as often she thought

From the bank to embrace him, but never, ah! never ! Then springing beneath, at a billow she caught,

And sunk to repose on its bosom for ever!

THE RING.

A TALE.
Annulus ille viri. -Ovid. Amor. lib. ii. eleg. 15.
The happy day at length arrived

When Rupert was to wed
The fairest maid in Saxony,

And take her to his bed.
As soon as morn was in the sky,

The feast and sports began;
The men admired the happy maid,

The maids the happy man.
In many a sweet device of mirth

The day was passed along ;
And some the featly dance amused,

And some the dulcet song.
The younger maids with Isabel

Disported through the bowers,
And decked her robe, and crowned her head

With motley bridal flowers.
The matrons all in rich attire,

Within the castle walls,
Sat listening to the choral strains

That echoed through the halls.
Young Rupert and his friends repaired

Unto a spacious court,
To strike the bounding tennis-ball

In feat and manly sport.
The bridegroom on his finger had

The wedding-ring so bright
Which was to grace the lily hand

Of Isabel that night.
And fearing he might break the gem,

Or lose it in the play,
He looked around the court, to see

Where he the ring might lay.

[ocr errors]

And all the night the demon lay

Cold-chilling by his side,
And strained him with such deadly grasp.

He thought he should have died !
But when the dawn of day was near,

The horrid phantom fled,
And left the affrighted youth to weep

By Isabel in bed.
All, all that day a gloomy cloud

Was seen on Rupert's brows;
Fair Isabel was likewise sad,

But strove to cheer her spouse.
And, as the day advanced, he thought

Of coming night with fear :
Ah! that he must with terror view

The bed that should be dear!
At length the second night arrived,

Again their couch they pressed ;
Poor Rupert hoped that all was o'er,

And looked for love and rest.
But, oh! when midnight came, again

The fiend was at his side,
And, as it strained him in its grasp,

With howl exulting cried, -
“ Husband ! husband ! I've the ring,

The ring thou gav'st to me ;
And thou’rt to me for ever weil

As I am wed to thee!”
In agony of wild despair,

He started from the bed ;
And thus to his bewildered wife

The trembling Rupert said :
“O Isabel ! dost thou not see

A shape of horrors here,
That strains me to the deadly kiss

And keeps me from my dear?"

“No, no, my love ! my Rupert,

No shape of horrors see;
And much I mourn the phantasy

That keeps my dear from me!”
This night, just like the night before,

In terrors passed away,
Nor did the demon vanish thence

Before the dawn of day.

Says Rupert then, “My Isabel,

Dear partner of my woe,
To Father Austin's holy cave

This instant will I go.”
Now Austin was a reverend man,

Who acted wonders maint,
Whom all the country round believed

A devil or a saint!
To Father Austin's holy cave

Then Rupert went full straight,
And told him all, and asked him how

To remedy his fate.
The father heard the youth, and then

Retired awhile to pray;
And having prayed for half an hour,

Returned, and thus did say:
“There is a place where four roads meet,

Which I will tell to thee;
Be there this eve, at fall of night,

od list what thou shalt see. Thou'lt see a group of figures pass

In strange disordered crowd, Travelling by torchlight through the roads,

With noises strange and loud.
And one that's high above the rest,

Terrific towering o'er,
Will make thee know him at a glance,

So I need say no more.
To him from me these tablets give,

They'll soon be understood ;
Thou need'st not fear, but give them straight,

I've scrawled them with my blood !”
The night-fall came, and Rupert all

In pale amazement went
To where the cross-roads met, and he

Was by the father sent.

And lo! a group of figures came

In strange disordered crowd, Travelling by torchlight through the roads,

With noises strange and loud.
And, as the gloomy train advanced

Rupert beheld from far
A female form of wanton mien

Seated upon a car.

This day shall come with aspect kind,

Wherever fate may cast your rover; He'll think of those he left behind,

And drink a health to bliss that's over!

Then oh! my friends, this hour improve,

Let's feel as if we ne'er could sever ;
And may the birth of her we love

Be thus with joy remembered ever!

TO A BOY, WITH A WATCH.

WRITTEN FOR A FRIEND. Is it not sweet, beloved youth,

To rove through Erudition's bowers, And cull the golden fruits of truth,

And gather Fancy's brilliant flowers ? And is it not more sweet than this,

To feel thy parents' hearts approving, And pay them back in sums of bliss

The dear, the endless debt of loving?
It must be so to thee, my youth;

With this idea toil is lighter ;
This sweetens all the fruits of truth,

And makes the flowers of Fancy brighter!
The little gift we send thee, boy,

May sometimes teach thy soul to ponder, If indolence or siren joy

Should ever tempt that soul to wander ; 'Twill tell thee that the winged day

Can ne'er be chained by man's endeavour;
That life and time shall fade away,

While heaven and virtue bloom for ever!

FRAGMENTS OF COLLEGE EXERCISES.

Nobilitas sola est atque unica virtus.— Juv. MARK those proud boasters of a splendid line, Like gilded ruins, mouldering while they shine, How heavy sits that weight of alien show, Like martial helm upon an infant's brow; Those borrowed splendours, whose contrasting light Throws back the native shades in deeper night.

Ask the proud train who glory's shade pursue, Where are the arts by which that glory grew?

The genuine virtues that with eagle gaze
Sought young Renown in all her orient blaze!
Where is the heart by chymic truth refined,
The exploring soul, whose eye had read mankind ?
Where are the links that twined, with heavenly art,
His country's interest round the patriot's heart?
Where is the tongue that scattered words of fire?
The spirit breathing through the poet's lyre?
Do these descend with all that tide of fame
Which vainly waters an unfruitful name?

Justum bellum quibus necessarium, et pia arma quibus nulla nisi in armis relinquitur spes.-Livy.

Is there no call, no consecrating cause,
Approved by Heaven, ordained by Nature's laws,
Where justice flies the herald of our way,
And truth's pure beams upon the banners play?
Yes, there's a call sweet as an angel's breath
To slumbering babes, or innocence in death;
And urgent as the tongue of heaven within
When the mind's balance trembles upon sin.
Oh! 'tis our country's voice, whose claim should meet
An echo in the soul's most deep retreat;
Along the heart's responding string should run,
Nor let a tone there vibrate-but the one !

SONG.
MARY, I believed thee true,

And I was blest in thus believing;
But now I mourn that e'er I knew

A girl so fair and so deceiving !
Few have ever loved like me,

Oh! I have loved thee too sincerely!
And few have e'er deceived like thee,

Alas! deceived me too severely!
Fare thee well! yet think awhile

On one whose bosom bleeds to doubt thee;
Who now would rather trust that smile,

And die with thee than live without thee!
Fare thee well ! I'll think of thee,

Thou leav'st me many a bitter token;
For see, distracting woman! see,
My peace is gone, my heart is broken !-

Fare thee well !

« PreviousContinue »