Page images
PDF
EPUB

While thus sbe spake, I fainter heard the peals,
..For Reynard, close attended at his heels
By panting dog, tired man, and spattered horse,
Thro' mere good fortune, took a different course.

The flock grew calm again, and I, the road
Following, that led me to my own abode,
Much wondered that the silly sheep had found
Such cause of terror in an empty sound
So sweet to huntsman, gentleman, and hound:

MORAL.

Beware of desperate steps. The darkest day,
Live till to-morrow, will have passed away.

BOADICEA,

ANODE.

1: :!
When the British warrior queen,

Bleeding from the Roman rods,
Sought, with an indignant mien,
1.... Counsel of her country's gods,

[merged small][ocr errors]

III, Princess ! if our aged eyes

Weep upon thy matchless wrongs, 'Tis because resentment tics

All the terrors of our tongues.

IV.
Rome shall perish--write that word

In the blood that she has spilt;
Perish, hopeless and abhorred,

Deep in ruin as in guilt.

V.
Rome, for empire far renowned,

Tramples on a thousand states;
Soon her pride shall kiss the ground

Hark! the Gaul is at her gates!

VI.
Other Romans shall arise,

Heedless of a soldier's name,
Sounds, not arms shall win the prize,

Harmony the path to fame.

VII.
Then the progeny that springs

From the forests of our land,
Armed with thunder, clad with wings,

Shall a wider world command.

VIII. Regions Cæsar never knew

Thy posterity shall sway; Where his eagles never flew,

None invincible as they,

[ocr errors]

IX.
Such the bard's prophetic words,

Pregnant with celestial fire,
Bending as he swept the chords
Of his sweet but awful lyre.

X.
She, with all a monarch's pride,

Felt them in her boson glow :
Rushed to battle, fought, and died;
Dying hurled them at the foe.

XI. Ruffans, pitilees as proud,

Heaven awards the vengeance due ; Empire is on us bestowed,

Shame and ruin wait for you,

H E ROI S M.

THERE was a time when Ætna's silent fire
Slept unperceived, the mountain yet entire;
When, conscious of no danger from below,
She towered a cloud-capt pyramid of snow.
No thunders shook with deep intestine sound
The blooming groves, that girdled her around,
Her unetuous olives, and her purplé vines,
(Unfelt the füry of those bursting mines)
The peasant's hopes, and not in vain, assured,
In peace upon her sloping sides matured.
When on a day, like that of the last doom,
A conflagration labouring in her womb,
She teemed and heaved with an infernal birth,
That shook the circling seas and solid earth.
Dark and voluminous the vapours rise,
Andhang their horrors in the neighbouring skies,
Wbile through the stygian veil that blots the day,
In dazzling stredks the vivid lightnings play.
But oh! what muse, and in what powers

of
Cap trace the torrent as it burns along?
Havoc and devastation in the van,
It marches o'er the prostrate works of man.
Vines, olives, herbage, forests, disappear,
And all the charms of a Sicilian year,

Revolving seasons, fruitless as they pass,
See it an uninformed and idle mass;

song,

Without a soil to invite the tiller's

care, Or blade, that might redeem it from despair. Yet time at length (what will not time achieve :) Clothes it with earth, and bids the produce live. Once more the spiry myrtle crowns the glade, And ruminating Hocks enjoy the shade. Oh bliss precarious, and unsafe retreats, Oh charming paradise of short-lived sweets! The self-same gale, that wafts the fragrance round, Brings to the distant ear a sullen sound: Again the mountain feels the imprisoned foe, Again pours ruin on the vale below. Ten thousand swains the wasted scene deplore, That only future ages can restore.

Ye monarchs, whom the lure of honour draws, Who write in blood the merits of your cause, Who strike the blow, then plead your own defence, Glory your aiin, but justice your pretence, Behold in Ætna's emblematic fires The mischiefs your ambitious pride inspires!

Fast by the stream, that bounds your just domain, And tells you where ye have a right to reign, A nation dwells, 1100 envious of your throne, Studious of peace, their neighbours', and their own. Ill-fated race! how deeply must they rue Their only crime, vicinity to you! The trumpet sounds, your legions swarm abroad, Through thc ripe harvest lies their destined roadi; At every step beneath their feet they tread The life of multitudes, a nation's bread!

« PreviousContinue »