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Developing the mountains, leaves, and flow'rs,
And shining in the brawling brook, where-by, Clear as its current, glide the saunt'ring hours
With a calm languor, which, though to the eye
Idlesse it seems, hath its morality. If from society we learn to live,
'Tis solitude should teach us how to die :
To slowly trace the forest's shady scene,
And mortal foot hath ne'er or rarely been;
To climb the trackless mountain all unseen, With the wild flock that never needs a fold;
Alone o'er steeps and foaming falls to lean ;This is not solitude; 'tis but to hold Converse with Nature's charms, and view her stores unroll'd.
But, 'midst the crowd, the hum, the shock of men,
To hear, to see, to feel, and to possess, And roam along, the world's tired denizen,
With none who bless us, none whom we can bless ;
Minions of splendour shrinking from distress!
If we were not, would seem to smile the less,
CANTO III. STANZA LXXI.
Is it not better, then, to be alone,
And love Earth only for its earthly sake? By the blue rushing of the arrowy Rhone,
Or the pure bosom of its nursing lake,
Which feeds it as a mother who doth make
Kissing its cries away as these awake;-
Portion of that around me; and to me
High mountains are a feeling, but the hum
Of human cities, torture : I can see
Nothing to loathe in nature, save to be
Class'd among creatures, when the soul can flee,
Of me and of my soul, as I of them ?
With a pure passion ? should I not contemn
All objects, if compared with these ? and stem
Such feelings for the hard and worldly phlegm
CANTO IV. STANZA CLXXVIII.
There is a rapture on the lonely shore,
By the deep Sea, and music in its roar:
I love not Man the less, but Nature more,
From all I may be, or have been before,
may close this part of the subject with his feeling address to the ocean:
Roll on, thou deep and dark blue Ocean-roll !
Ten thousand fleets sweep over thee in vain ;
Stops with the shore ;---upon the watery plain
The wrecks are all thy deed, nor doth remain
When, for a moment, like a drop of rain,
His steps are not upon thy paths—thy fields
Are not a spoil for him-thou dost arise
And shake him from thee; the vile strength he wields:
For earth's destruction, thou dost all despise,
Spurning him from thy bosom to the skies,
And howling, to his Gods ; where haply lies
Of rock-built cities, bidding nations quake,
The oak leviathans, whose huge ribs make
These are thy toys, and, as the snowy flake,
Assyria, Greece, Rome, Carthage, what are they? Thy waters wasted them while they were free,
And many a tyrant since; their shores obey
The stranger, slave, or savage; their decay
Unchangeable, save to thy wild waves' play-
Thou glorious mirror, where the Almighty's form
Glasses itself in tempests; in all time,
Icing the pole, or in the torrid clime
Dark-heaving; boundless, endless, and sublimeThe image of Eternity—the throne
Of the Invisible: even from out thy slime
Of youthful sports was on thy breast to be
I wanton'd with thy breakers--they to me.
Made them a terror, 'twas a pleasing fear;
For I was, as it were, a child of thee,
But the Poet not only sees beauty in nature, he is also master of the feelings and passions. He is thus described :
The poet in a golden age was born,
With golden stars above,
The love of love. We may expect in him, therefore, all the feelings intensified. Look at Byron in this way. See how softly he touches the feeling of sadness :
CANTO II. STANZA XCVIII.
What stamps the wrinkle deeper on the brow?
And be alone on earth, as I am now.
Before the Chastener humbly let me bow,
Roll on, vain days ! full reckless may ye flow,
But ever and anon of griefs subdued
There comes a token, like a scorpion's sting,
And slight withal may be the things which bring
Back on the heart the weight which it would fling
A tone of music-summer's eve or spring-
O Time! the beautifier of the dead,
Adorner of the ruin, comforter
Time! the corrector where our judgments err.
Which never loses though it doth defer:
Time, the avenger! unto thee I lift
My hands, and eyes, and heart, and crave of thee a gift.
Unhappy White ! while life was in its spring,
(To be continued.)
, NOMENA. By LEO H. GRINDON. 3rd edition.' Cloth extra, 6s. 6d., free by Post.
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