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Nor mark, within its roseate canopy,
Her blush of maiden shame.
Oh, Autumn! why so soon
Depart the hues that make thy forests glad;
Thy gentle wind and thy fair sunny noon,
And leave thee wild and sad!
Ah, 't were a lot too blest
For ever in thy colour'd shades to stray
Amidst the kisses of the soft southwest
To rove and dream for aye;
And leave the vain low strife, That makes men mad—the tug for wealth and power, The passions and the cares that wither life,
And waste its little hour.
I KNOW where the timid fawn abides
In the depths of the shaded dell,
Where the leaves are broad, and the thicket hides,
With its many stems and its tangled sides,
From the eye of the hunter well.
I know where the young May violet grows,
In its lone and lowly nook,
On the mossy bank, where the larch tree throws
Its broad dark boughs, in solemn repose,
Far over the silent brook.
And that timid fawn starts not with fear
When I steal to her secret bower,
And that young May violet to me is dear,
And I visit the silent streamlet near,
To look on the lovely flower.
Thug Maquon sings as he lightly walks
To the hunting ground on the hills; 'T is a song of his maid of the woods and rocks, With her bright black eyes and long black locks,
And voice like the music of rills.
He goes to the chase-but evil eyes
Are at watch in the thicker shades;
For she was lovely that smiled on his sighs,
And he bore, from a hundred lovers, his prize,
The flower of the forest maids.
The boughs in the morning wind are stirr'd,
And the woods their song renew,
With the early carol of many a bird,
And the quicken'd tune of the streamlet heard
Where the hazles trickle with dew.
And Maquon has promis'd his dark-hair'd maid,
Ere eve shall redden the sky, A good red deer from the forest shade, That bounds with the herd through grove and glade,
At her cabin door shall lie.
The hollow woods, in the setting sun,
Ring shrill with the fire-bird's lay;
And Maquon's sylvan labours are done,
And his shafts are spent, but the spoil they won
He bears on his homeward way.
He stops near his bower—his eye perceives
Strange traces along the groundAt once, to the earth his burden he heaves, He breaks through the veil of boughs and leaves,
And gains its door with a bound.
But the vines are torn on its walls that leant,
And all from the young shrubs there By struggling hands have the leaves been rent, And there hangs, on the sassafras broken and bent,
One tress of the well known hair.
But where is she who at this calm hour,
Ever watch'd his coming to see,
She is not at the door, nor yet in the bower,
He calls—but he only hears on the flower
The hum of the laden bee.
It is not a time for idle grief,
Nor a time for tears to flow ;
The horror that freezes his limbs is brief-
his war axe and bow, and a sheaf Of darts made sharp for the foe.
And he looks for the print of the ruffian's feet,
Where he bore the maiden away;
And he darts on the fatal path more fleet
Than the blast that hurries the vapour and sleet
O’er the wild November day.
T was early summer when Maquon's bride
Was stolen away from his door;
But at length the maples in crimson are dyed,
And the grape is black on the cabin side,
And she smiles at his hearth once more.
But far in a pine grove, dark and cold,
Where the yellow leaf falls not,
Nor the autumn shines in scarlet and gold,
There lies a hillock of fresh dark mould,
In the deepest gloom of the spot.
And the Indian girls, that pass
Point out the ravisher's grave;, * And how soon to the bower she loved," they say, s6 Return'd the maid that was borne away
From Maquon, the fond and the brave.”
To him who in the love of Nature holda
Communion with her visible forms, she speaks
A various language; for his gayer hours
She has a voice of gladness, and a smile
And eloquence of beauty, and she glides
Into his dark musings, with a mild
And gentle sympathy, that steals away
Their sharpness, ere he is aware. When thoughts
Of the last bitter hour come like a blight
Over thy spirit, and sad images
Of the stern agony, and shroud, and pall,
And breathless darkness, and the narrow house,
Make thee to shudder, and grow sick at heart ;-
Go forth, unto the open sky, and list
To Nature's teachings, while from all around-
Earth and her waters, and the depths of air,-
Comes a still voice-Yet a few days, and thee
The all-beholding sun shall see no more
In all his course; nor yet in the cold ground,
Where thy pale form was laid, with many tears,
Nor in the embrace of ocean shall exist
Thy image. Earth, that nourish'd thee, shall claim
Thy growth, to be resolved to earth again;
And, lost each human trace, surrendering up
Thine individual being, shalt thou go
To mix for ever with the elements,
To be a brother to th' insensible rock,
And to the sluggish clod, which the rude swain
Turns with his share and treads upon. The oak
Shall send his roots abroad, and pierce thy mould.
Yet not to thy eternal resting place
Shalt thou retire alone—nor couldst thou wish
Couch more magnificent. Thou shalt lie down
With patriarchs of the infant world—with kings
The powerful of the earth—the wise, the good,
Fair forms, and hoary seers of ages past,
All in one mighty sepulchre.—The hills
Rock-ribb'd and ancient as the sun,—the vales
Stretching in pensive quietness between;-
The venerable woods-rivers that move
In majesty, and the complaining brooks
That make the meadows green; and pour'd round all,
Old ocean's gray and melancholy waste,-
Are but the solemn decorations all
Of the great tomb of man. The golden sun,
The planets, all the infinite host of heaven,
Are shining on the sad abodes of death,
Through the still lapse of ages. All that tread
The globe are but a handful to the tribes
That slumber in its bosom.—Take the wings
Of morning and the Barcan desert pierce,
Or lose thyself in the continuous woods
Where rolls the Oregan, and hears no sound,
Save his own dashings-yet-the dead are there,
And millions in those solitudes, since first
The flight of years began, have laid them down
In their last sleep—the dead reign there alone.
So shalt thou rest—and what if thou shalt fall
Unnoticed by the living—and no friend
Take note of thy departure? All that breathe
Will share thy destiny. The gay will laugh
When thou art gone, the solemn brood of care
Plod on, and each one as before will chase
His favorite phantom; yet all these shall leave
Their mirth and their employments, and shall come,
And make their bed with thee. As the long train
Of ages glide away, the sons of men,
The youth in life's green spring, and he who
goes In the full strength of years, matron, and maid, The bow'd with age, the infant in the smiles And beauty of its innocent age cut off,Shall one by one be gather'd to thy side, By those, who in their turn shall follow them. So live, that when thy summons comes to join The innumerable caravan, that moves To the pale realms of shade, where each shall take His chainber in the silent balls of death, Thou go not, like the quarry-slave at night, Scourged to his dungeon, but sustain’d and soothed By an unfaltering trust, approach thy grave, Like one who wraps the drapery of his couch About him, and lies down to pleasant dreams.
WEEHAWKEN! In thy mountain scenery yet,
All we adore of nature, in her wild
And frolic hour of infancy, is met;,
And never has a summer's morning smiled
Upon a lovelier scene, than the full eye
of the enthusiast revels on—when high,
Amid thy forest solitudes, he climbs
that proudly tower above the deep, And knows that sense of danger, which sublimes
The breathless moment when his daring step
Is on the verge of the cliff, and he can hear
The low dash of the wave with startled ear,
Like the death music of his coming doom,
And clings to the green turf with desperate force,
As the heart clings to life; and when resume
The currents in his veins their wonted course,
There lingers a deep feeling—like the moan
Of wearied ocean, when the storm is gone.
n such an hour he turns, and on his view,
Ocean, and earth, and heaven, burst before him
Clouds slumbering at his feet, and the clear blue
Of summer's sky, in beauty bending o'er him-
The city bright below; and far away
Sparkling in golden light, his own romantic bay.
Tall spire, and glittering roof, and battlement,
And banners floating in the sunny air;
And white sails o'er the calm blue waters bent,
Green isle, and circling shore, are blended there,
In wild reality. When life is old,
And many a scene forgot, the heart will hold
Its memory of this; nor lives there one
Whose infant breath was drawn, or boyhood days
Of happiness were pass'd beneath that sun,
That in his manhood prime can calmly gaze
Upon that bay, or on that mountain stand,
Nor feel the prouder of his native land.