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Is this the land of song-ennobled line?
Is this the land, where Genius ne'er in vain
Pour'd forth his lofty strain?
Ah me! yet Spenser, gentlest bard divine,
Beneath chill Disappointment's shade
His weary limbs in lonely anguish laid.
And o'er her darling dead
Pity hopeless hung her head,
While "mid the pelting of that merciless storm," unk to the cold earth Otway's famish'd form!
Sublime of thought, and confident of fame,
From vales where Avon winds, the Minstrel came.
Light-hearted youth! aye, as he hastes along,
He meditates the future song,
How dauntless Ella fray'd the Dacian foe;
And while the numbers flowing strong
In eddies whirl, in surges throng,
Exulting in the spirits' genial throe,
In tides of power his life-blood seems to flow.
And now his cheeks with deeper ardors flame,
His eyes have glorious meanings, that declare
More than the light of outward day shines there,
A holier triumph and a sterner aim!
Wings grow within him; and he soars above
Or Bard's, or Minstrel's lay of war or love.
Friend to the friendless, to the Sufferer health,
He hears the widow's prayer, the good man's praise;
To scenes of bliss transmutes his fancied wealth,
And young and old shall now see happy days.
On many a waste he bids trim gardens rise,
Gives the blue sky to many a prisoner's eyes;
And now in wrath he grasps the patriot steel,
And her own iron rod he makes Oppression feel.
But that Despair and Indignation rose,
And told again the story of thy woes;
Told the keen insult of the unfeeling heart;
The dread dependence on the low-born mind;
Told every pang, with which thy soul must smart,
Neglect, and grinning Scorn, and Want combined!
Recoiling quick, thou bad'st the friend of pain
Roll the black tide of Death through every freezing
Ye woods! that wave o'er Avon's rocky steep,
To Fancy's ear sweet is your murmuring deep!
For here she loves the cypress wreath to weave,
Watching, with wistful eye, the saddening tints of eve
Here, far from men, amid this pathless grove,
In solemn thought the Minstrel wont to rove,
Like star-beam on the slow sequester'd tide
| Lone-glittering, through the high tree branching wide And here, in Inspiration's eager hour,
When most the big soul feels the mastering power,
These wilds, these caverns roaming o'er,
Round which the screaming sea-gul's soar,
With wild unequal steps he pass'd along,
Oft pouring on the winds a broken song:
Anon, upon some rough rock's fearful brow
Would pause abrupt-and gaze upon the waves
Poor Chatterton! farewell! of darkest hues
This chaplet cast I on thy unshaped tomb;
But dare no longer on the sad theme muse,
Lest kindred woes persuade a kindred doom:
For oh! big gall-drops, shook from Folly's wing,
Have blacken'd the fur promise of my spring;
The last pale Hope that shiver'd at my heart!
Sweet Flower of Hope! free Nature's genial child! And the stern Fate transpierced with viewless dart
That didst so fair disclose thy early bloom,
Filling the wide air with a rich perfume!
For thee in vain all heavenly aspects smiled;
From the hard world brief respite could they 'win-Hence, gloomy thoughts! no more my soul shai
The frost nipp'd sharp without, the canker prey'd
Ah! where are fled the charms of vernal Grace,
And Joy's wild gleams that lighten'd o'er thy face?
Youth of tumultuous soul, and haggard eye!
Thy wasted form, thy hurried steps, I view,
On thy wan forehead starts the lethal dew,
And oh! the anguish of that shuddering sigh!
Such were the struggles of the gloomy hour, When Care, of wither'd brow, Prepar'd the poison's death-cold power. Already to thy lips was raised the bowl,
When near thee stood Affection meek
(Her bosom bare, and wildly pale her cheek,) Thy sullen gaze she bade thee roll
On scenes that well might melt thy soul; Thy native cot she flash d upon thy view, Thy native cot, where still, at close of day, cace smiling sate, and listen'd to thy lay; Thy Sister's shrieks she bade thee hear, And mark thy Mother's thrilling tear;
See, see her breast's convulsive throe, Her silent agony of woe! Ah! dash the poison'd chalice from thy hand! And thou hadst dash'd it, at her soft command, * Avon, a river near Bristol; the birth-place of Chatterton.
On joys that were! No more endure to weigh
The shame and anguish of the evil day,
Sublime of Hope I seek the cottaged dell,
Wisely forgetful! O'er the ocean swell
Where Virtue calm with careless step may stray
And, dancing to the moon-light roundelay,
The wizard Passions weave a holy spell!
O Chatterton! that thou wert yet alive!
Sure thou wouldst spread the canvas to the gale
And love with us the tinkling team to drive
O'er peaceful Freedom's undivided dale;
And we, at sober eve, would round thee throng,
Hanging, enraptured, on thy stately song!
And greet with smiles the young-eyed Poesy
All deftly mask'd, as hoar Antiquity.
Alas vain Phantasies' the fleeting brood
Of Woe self-solaced in her dreamy mood!
Yet will I love to follow the sweet dream,
Where Susquehannah pours his untamed stream
And on some hill, whose forest-frowning side
Waves o'er the murmurs of his calmer tido
Will raise a solemn Cenotaph to thee,
Sweet Harper of time-shrouded Minstrelsy!
And there, soothed sadly by the dirgeful wit
Muse on the sore ills I had left behind.
The Pixies, in the superstition of Devonshire, are a race of beings invisibly small, and harmless or friendly to man. At a small distance from a village in that county, half-way up a
O'er his hush'd soul our soothing witcheries shed,
And twine our faery garlands round his head.
When Evening's dusky car,
Crown'd with her dewy star,
wood-covered hill, is an excavation called the Pixies' Parlor. Steals o'er the fading sky in shadowy flight
The roots of old trees form its ceiling; and on its sides are innumerable ciphers, among which the author discovered his own cipher and those of his brothers, cut by the hand of their
childhood. At the foot of the hill flows the river Otter.
To this place the Author conducted a party of young Ladies, during the Summer months of the year 1793; one of whom, of stature elegantly small, and of complexion colorless yet clear, was proclaimed the Faery Queen. On which occasion the following irregular Ode was written.
On leaves of aspen trees
We tremble to the breeze,
Veil'd from the grosser ken of mortal sight
Or, haply, at the visionary hour,
Along our wildly-bower'd sequester'd walk,
We listen to the enamour'd rustic's talk;
Heave with the heavings of the maiden's breast,
Where young-eyed Loves have built their turtle
Or guide of soul-subduing power
The electric flash, that from the melting eye
Darts the fond question and the soft reply.
Or through the mystic ringlets of the vale
We flash our faery feet in gamesome prank,
Or, silent-sandall'd, pay our defter court
Circling the Spirit of the Western Gale,
Where wearied with his flower-caressing sport
Supine he slumbers on a violet bank;
Then with quaint music hymn the parting gleam
By lonely Otter's sleep-persuading stream;
Or where his waves with loud unquiet song
Dash'd o'er the rocky channel froth along
Or where, his silver waters smoothed to rest,
The tall tree's shadow sleeps upon his breast.
Hence, thou lingerer, Light!
Eve saddens into Night.
Mother of wildly-working dreams! we view
The sombre hours, that round thee stand
With downcast eyes (a duteous band!)
Their dark robes dripping with the heavy dew
Sorceress of the ebon throne!
Thy power the Pixies own,
When round thy raven brow
Heaven's lucent roses glow,
And clouds, in watery colors drest,
Float in light drapery o'er thy sable vest:
What time the pale moon sheds a softer day,
Mellowing the woods beneath its pensive beam:
For 'mid the quivering light 't is ours to play,
Aye dancing to the cadence of the stream.
Welcome, Ladies! to the cell
Where the blameless Pixies dwell:
But thou, sweet Nymph! proclaim'd our Faery
With what obeisance meet
Thy presence shall we greet?
For lo! attendant on thy steps are seen
Graceful Ease in artless stole,
And white-robed Purity of soul,
With Honor's softer mien;
Mirth of the loosely-flowing hair,
And meek-eyed Pity eloquentiy fair,
Whose tearful cheeks are lovely to the view
As snow-drop wet with dew.
Unboastful maid! though now the Lily pale
Transparent grace thy beauties meek;
Yet ere again along the empurpling vale,
The purpling vale and elfin-haunted grove,
Young Zephyr his fresh flowers profusely throws,
We'll tinge with livelier hues thy cheek;
And haply, from the nectar-breathing Rose
Extract a blush for love!
A CHRISTMAS TALE, TOLD BY A SCHOOL-BOY TO HIS LITTLE BROTHERS AND SISTERS.
UNDERNEATH a huge oak tree
There was, of swine, a huge company,
That grunted as they crunch'd the mast:
For that was ripe, and fell full fast.
Then they trotted away, for the wind grew high:
One acorn they left, and no more might you spy.
Next came a raven, that liked not such folly:
He belong'd, they did say, to the witch Melancholy!
Blacker was he than blackest jet,
Flew low in the rain, and his feathers not wet.
He pick'd up the acorn and buried it straight
By the side of a river both deep and great.
Where then did the Raven go?
He went high and low,
Over hill, over dale, did the black Raven go.
Many Autumns, many Springs
Travell'd he with wandering wings:
Many Summers, many Winters—
I can't tell half his adventures.
At length he came back, and with him a She,
And the acorn was grown to a tall oak tree.
They built them a nest in the topmost bough,
And young ones they had, and were happy enow.
But soon came a woodian in leathern guise,
His brow, like a pent-house, hung over his eyes.
He'd on ax in his hand, not a word he spoke,
But with many a hem! and a sturdy stroke,
At length he brought down the poor Raven's own oak.
His young ones were kill'd; for they could not depart,
And their mother did die of a broken heart.
The boughs from the trunk the woodman did sever; And they floated it down on the course of the river. They saw'd it in planks, and its bark they did strip, And with this tree and others they made a good ship. The ship it was launch'd; but in sight of the land Such a storm there did rise as no ship could withstand.
It bulged on a rock, and the waves rush'd in fast: The old Raven flew round and round, and caw'd to the blast.
He heard the last shriek of the perishing souls--See! see! o'er the topmast the mad water rolls! Right glad was the Raven, and off he went fleet, And Death riding home on a cloud he did meet, And he thank'd him again and again for this treat: They had taken his all, and Revenge was sweet!
A FAREWELL ODE ON QUITTING SCHOOL FOR JESUS
WHERE graced with many a classic spoil
Cam rolls his reverend stream along,
I haste to urge the learned toil
That sternly chides my lovelorn song:
Ah me! too mindful of the days
Illumed by Passion's orient rays,
When Peace, and Cheerfulness, and Health
Enrich'd me with the best of wealth.
Ah fair delights! that o'er my soul
On Memory's wing, like shadows fly!
Ah Flowers! which Joy from Eden stole
While Innocence stood smiling by!--
But cease, fond heart! this bootless moan:
Those hours on rapid pinions flown
Shall yet return, by Absence crown'd
And scatter lovelier roses round.
The Sun who ne'er remits his fires
On heedless eyes may pour the day:
The Moon, that oft from Heaven retires,
Endears her renovated ray.
What though she leaves the sky unblest
To mourn awhile in murky vest?
When she relumes her lovely light,
We bless the wanderer of the night.
LINES ON AN AUTUMNAL EVENING.
O THOU, wild Fancy, check thy wing! No more
Those thin white flakes, those purple clouds explore
Nor there with happy spirits 'speed thy flight
Bathed in rich amber-glowing floods of light;
Nor in yon gleam, where slow descends the day,
With western peasants hail the morning ray!
Ah! rather bid the perish'd pleasures move,
A shadowy train, across the soul of Love!
O'er Disappointment's wintry desert fling
Each flower that wreathed the dewy locks of Spring,
When blushing, like a bride, from Hope's trim
She leap'd, awaken'd by the pattering shower.
Now sheds the sinking Sun a deeper gleam,
Aid, lovely Sorceress! aid thy poet's dream!
With fairy wand O bid the Maid arise,
Chaste Joyance dancing in her bright-blue eyes,
As erst when from the Muses' calm abode
I came, with Learning's meed not unbestow'd;
When as she twined a laurel round my brow,
And met my kiss, and half return'd my vow,
O'er all my frame shot rapid my thrill'd heart,
And every nerve confess'd th' electric dart.
O dear deceit! I see the Maiden rise,
Chaste Joyance dancing in her bright-blue eyes!
When first the lark, high soaring, swells his throat
Mocks the tired eye, and scatters the wild note,
I trace her footsteps on the acc istom'd lawn,
I mark her glancing 'mid the gleam of dawn.
When the bent flower beneath the night-dew weepe
And on the lake the silver lustre sleeps,
Amid the paly radiance soft and sad,
She meets my lonely path in moon-beams clad.
With her along the streamlet's brink I rove;
With her I list the warblings of the grove;
And seems in each low wind her voice to float,
Lone-whispering Pity in each soothing note!
Spirits of Love! ye heard her name! obey
The powerful spell, and to my haunt repair.
Whether on clustering pinions ye are there,
Where rich snows blossom on the myrtle trees,
Or with fond languishment around my fair
Sigh in the loose luxuriance of her hair;
O heed the spell, and hither wing your way,
Like far-off music, voyaging the breeze!
Spirits! to you the infant Maid was given,
Form'd by the wondrous alchemy of heaven!
No fairer maid does Love's wide empire know,
No fairer maid e'er heaved the bosom's snow.
A thousand Loves around her forehead fly;
A thousand Loves sit melting in her eye;
Love lights her smile-in Joy's red nectar dips
His myrtle flower, and plants it on her lips.
She speaks! and hark that passion-warbled song—
Still, Fancy! still that voice, those notes prolong,
As sweet as when that voice with rapturous falls
Shall wake the soften'd echoes of Heaven's halls!
O (have I sigh'd) were mine the wizard's rod,
Or mine the power of Proteus, changeful god!
A flower-entangled arbor I would seem,
To shield my Love from noontide's sultry beam:
Or bloom a Myrtle, from whose odorous boughs
My love might weave gay garlands for her brows.
When twilight stole across the fading vale,
To fan my love I'd be the Evening Gale;
Mourn in the soft folds of her swelling vest,
And flutter my faint pinions on her breast!
On Seraph wing I'd float a Dream by night,
To soothe my Love with shadows of delight:
Or soar aloft to be the Spangled Skies,
And gaze upon her with a thousand eyes!
As when the Savage, who his drowsy frame
Had bask'd beneath the Sun's unclouded flame,
Awakes amid the troubles of the air,
The skiey deluge, and white lightning's glare-
Aghast he scours before the tempest', sweep,
And sad recalls the sunny hour of sleep:-
So toss'd by storms along Life's wildering way,
Mine eye reverted views that cloudless day,
When by my native brook I wont to rove,
While Hope with kisses nursed the Infant Love.
Dear native brook! like Peace, so placidly
Smoothing through fertile fields thy current meek!
Dear native brook! where first young Poesy
Stared wildly-eager in her noontide dream!
Where blameless pleasures dimple Quiet's cheek,
As water-lilies ripple thy slow stream!
Dear native haunts! where Virtue still is gay,
Where Friendship's fix'd star sheds a mellow'd ray,
Where Love a crown of thornless Roses wears,
Where soften'd Sorrow smiles within her tears;
And Memory, with a Vestal's chaste employ,
Unceasing feeds the lambent flame of joy!
No more your sky-larks melting from the sight
Shall thrill the attuned heart-string with delight—
No more shall deck your pensive Pleasures sweet
With wreaths of sober hue my evening seat.
Yet dear to Fancy's eye your varied scene
Of wood, hill, dale, and sparkling brook between
Yet sweet to Fancy's ear the warbled song,
That soars on Morning's wings your vales ainong
Scenes of my Hope! the aching eye ye leave,
Like yon bright hues that paint the clouds of eve!
Tearful and saddening with the sadden'd blaze,
Mine eye the gleam pursues with wistful gaze,
Sees shades on shades with deeper tint impend,
Till chill and damp the moonless night descend
As late each flower that sweetest blows
I pluck'd, the Garden's pride!
Within the petals of a Rose
A sleeping Love I spied.
Around his brows a beamy wreath
Of many a lucent hue;
All purple, glow'd his cheek, beneath
Inebriate with dew.
I softly seized the unguarded Power,
Nor scared his balmy rest;
And placed him, caged within the flower,
On spotless Sara's breast.
But when unweeting of the guile
Awoke the prisoner sweet,
He struggled to escape awhile,
And stamp'd his faery feet.
Ah! soon the soul-entrancing sight
Subdued the impatient boy!
He gazed! he thrill'd with deep delight!
Then clapp'd his wings for joy.
"And O! he cried-" Of magic kind
What charm this Throne endear!
Some other Love let Venus find-
I'll fix my empire here."
ONE kiss, dear Maid! I said and sigh'd-
Your scorn the little boon denied.
Ah why refuse the blameless bliss?
Can danger lurk within a kiss?
Yon viewless Wanderer of the vale,
The Spirit of the Western Gale,
At Morning's break, at Evening's closo
Inhales the sweetness of the Rose.
And hovers o'er the uninjured bloom
Sighing back the soft perfume.
Vigor to the Zephyr's wing
Her nectar-breathing kisses fling;
And He the glitter of the Dew Scatters on the Rose's hue. Bashful, lo! she bends her head, And darts a blush of deeper red!
Too well those lovely lips disclose
The triumphs of the opening Rose;
O fair! O graceful! bid them prove
As passive to the breath of Love.
In tender accents, faint and low,
Well-pleased I hear the whisper'd "No!"
The whisper'd "No"-how little meant!
Sweet falsehood that endears consent!
For on those lovely lips the while
Dawns the soft-relenting smile,
And tempts with feign'd dissuasion coy
The gentle violence of Joy.
ITS MOTHER BEING TETHERED NEAR IT.
POOR little foal of an oppressed race!
! love the languid patience of thy face:
And oft with gentle hand I give thee bread,
And clap thy ragged coat, and pat thy head.
But what thy dulled spirits hath dismay'd,
That never thou dost sport along the glade?
And (most unlike the nature of things young)
That earthward still thy moveless head is hung?
Do thy prophetic fears anticipate,
Meek Child of Misery! thy future fate?
The starving meal, and all the thousand aches
"Which patient merit of the unworthy takes?"
Or is thy sad heart thrill'd with filial pain
To see thy wretched mother's shorten'd chain?
And truly, very piteous is her lot-
Chain'd to a log within a narrow spot
Where the close-eaten grass is scarcely seen,
While sweet around her waves the tempting green!
Poor Ass! thy master should have learnt to show
Pity-best taught by fellowship of woe!
For much I fear me that he lives like thee,
Half famish'd in a land of luxury!
How askingly its footsteps hither bend?
It seems to say, " And have I then one friend?”
Innocent Foal! thou poor despised forlorn!
I hail thee brother-spite of the fool's scorn!
And fain would take thee with me, in the dell
Of peace and mild equality to dwell,
From the pomp of sceptred state,
From the rebel's noisy hate.
In a cottaged vale She dwells
Listening to the Sabbath bells'
Still around her steps are seen
Spotless Honor's meeker mien,
Love, the sire of pleasing fears,
Sorrow smiling through her tears,
And, conscious of the past employ,
Memory, bosom-spring of joy
WHEN Youth his faery reign began
Ere sorrow had proclaim'd me man;
While Peace the present hour beguiled,
And all the lovely prospect smiled;
Then, Mary! 'mid my lightsome glee
I heaved the painless Sigh for thee.
And when, along the waves of woe,
My harass'd heart was doom'd to know
The frantic burst of outrage keen,
And the slow pang that gnaws unseen;
Then shipwreck'd on life's stormy sea,
I heaved an anguish'd Sigh for thee'
But soon reflection's power impress'd
A stiller sadness on my breast;
And sickly hope with waning eye
Was well content to droop and die:
I yielded to the stern decree,
Yet heaved a languid Sigh for thee!
And though in distant climes to roam,
A wanderer from my native home,
I fain would soothe the sense of Care
And lull to sleep the Joys that were!
Thy Image may not banish'd be-
Still, Mary! still I sigh for thee.
EPITAPH ON AN INFANT. ERE Sin could blight or Sorrow fade, Death came with friendly care; The opening bud to Heaven convey'd, And bade it blossom there.
Where Toil shall call the charmer Health his Bride, LINES WRITTEN AT THE KING'S ARMS
And Laughter tickle Plenty's ribless side!
How thou wouldst toss thy heels in gamesome play,
And frisk about, as lamb or kitten gay!
Yea! and more musically sweet to me
Thy dissonant harsh bray of joy would be,
Than warbled melodies that soothe to rest
The aching of pale fashion's vacant breast!
TELL me, on what holy ground May Domestic Peace be found? Halcyon Daughter of the skies, Far on fearful wings she flies.
FORMERLY THE HOUSE OF THE MAN OF ROSS."
RICHER than miser o'er his countless hoards,
Nobler than kings, or king-polluted lords,
Here dwelt the man of Ross! O Traveller, hear!
Departed merit claims a reverent tear.
Friend to the friendless, to the sick man health,
With generous joy he view'd his modest wealth;
He hears the widow's heaven-breath'd prayer of
He mark'd the shelter'd orphan's tearful gaze,
Or where the sorrow-shrivell'd captive lay,
Pours the bright blaze of Freedom's noontide ray
Beneath this roof if thy cheer'd moments pass,
Fill to the good man's name one grateful glass