Imagens das páginas

us from that unexplored country on which we fear to tread; the last pause between experience and doubt,the last dark silent curtain which separates Time from Eternity


He who hath roam'd, with slow and pensive tread,
Through that proud temple of the mighty Dead,
Where Britain shrines, in monumental state,
Her wise, her good, her gallant, and her great-
Whose every footstep, in that awful gloom,
Hath been re-echoed from the Poet's tomb,
And broke th’ unearthly silence, lone and deep,
That soothes the warrior in unstartled sleep-
He must have felt, slow stealing o'er his breast,
The solemn stillness of that place of rest;
Felt that, amidst the silence of the dead,
Majestic spirits hover'd o'er his head;
Till his wrapt soul hath held, or seem'd to hold,
Mysterious converse with the great of old;
Traversed with them the far and pathless skies,
And, sighing, waked to life's realities.

Such lofty dreamings o'er the fancy creep,
Where the proud ashes of the mighty sleep.
There let the heart throb, and the pulse beat high,
And Genius lift her spirit-speaking eye ;
At Wolsey's grave let young Ambition burn,
And Science bow at Newton's honour'd urn;
But would'st thou feel the gentler throbs of woe,
Let yon lone church-yard teach thy tears to flow.

Survey the spot:—no pomp arrests the eye, The green turf smiles beneath the summer sky;

And wild-flowers sweet a glittering mantle spread
Above the ashes of the village dead.
The humble mound, with verdant moss o'ergrown-
The name traced rudely on th' unpolish'd stone
The simple epitaph of village-bard-
These are the honours of that lone church-yard ;
Where every Sabbath hears some friendly tread
Near the cold dwelling of the kindred dead.

Within the church recline, in humble state, They whom the rustics once accounted great. There the mild pastor calmly sleeps, beneath That spot whence oft he smooth'd the road to death; There he whose wealth the


man's labour cheer'd In death reposes, as in life, revered ; Nor hears th' oppressor, in his narrow bed, The curses misery heaps upon his head.

Amidst the rest there is a nameless cell
Here let me pause — I knew its tenant well;
And still in memory's charmed mirror find

of sunshine with her name entwined.
Ask not of me-'t were useless to impart
That name='

:-'tis written on the poor man's heart.
If she had faults, in death they are forgot,-
If she had follies—I perceived them not.
Her virtues-seek not on her tomb to find
The record stamp'd on living Friendship's mind.

Seek it not here :-no monumental stone Lifts its proud head to make those virtues known : No pompous phrases on her tomb reveal The deeds in life she gloried to conceal. Seek it not here-go, view the widow's cot; Her name lives there—her deeds are unforgol; Go, view the sick man on his restless bed-Her gifts remain, her memory is not fled ; View the lone orphans in their drear abodem Listen-they pray-her name is breathed to God.


Or if thou lov'st to revel in distress,
Nor shrinks thy soul from deepest wretchedness-
Goher memorial from her children seek-
Oh God !--thou 'lt find it in the faded cheek,
The faltering voice, the deep, half-smother'd sigh,
The tear that starts resistless to the eye ;
The long, long silence, and the still, fix'd gaze
Of eyes that tell thee how the Spirit strays ;-
Go, seek her virtues in that living scene,
And sorrowing cry:

“ How great they must have been!”
Yet she had many sorrows; pain and care
That cheek had furrow'd, once so passing fair.
The throbs, the pangs her gentle bosom knew,
Were great, were frequent-but were told to few.
Yet tranquil were her sorrows, mute her pain,
Her meek heart suffer'd, but could not complain.
Slowly her spirit waned, and when at last
Death came, she bow'd her meekly to the blast;
Still unrepining left this drear abode,
Nor feebly murmur'd at the will of God.

My boyhood's dream is over-Life hath fled, With more of smiles than sorrow, o'er my head ; And now, as standing in this silent gloom, Friend of my childhood, I behold thy tomb, In swift succession o'er my memory fly The dreamlike shadows of the days gone by. Few were those days, but happy—all things smiled On me, a sinless and unthinking child : On every side the prospect glitter'd fair, Light were my sorrows and I knew not care: And friendly faces all around me shone, And every voice breathed Friendship's sweetest tone; Nor knew I then a kinder friend than her, Whom now I honour in her sepulchre.

When the glad. Sabbath bade the rustics meet, And lightsome footsteps throng'd the swarming street, How oft with looks of pride, in Sunday dress, I sprung to meet her welcome and caress!

How oft, with beating heart and anxious eye,
Waited my smiling Parent's dread reply,
When she repeated the well-known request
“ That I that evening might remain her guest,”
And led me to the hospitable door
Of that fair mansion I shall view no more.

Within that Hall glad faces used to shine,
And young eyes gleam'd, and pulses throbb’d with mine;
And childhood's sports our footsteps drew around
Yon smiling garden's fair and ample bound.
And when, at evening, in that Hall we met,
With cheeks all sunshine, souls without regret,
“Laugh'd the heart's laugh," nor knew th' approach of care,
(Still, still I feel those hours—how sweet they were !)
She, the fond mother, bless'd each happy child,
Beheld our pleasures-shared our joys, and smiled.
Time hath rolld on—now pass yon gloomy gate,
And view that mansion-lone and desolate;
No hum of happy voices meets the ear,
No joyous groups Affection's bosom cheer :
Silent and sad the vacant chambers sleep,
And sorrowing menials scarce forbear to weep.
There but remains the memory of her-
A moonbeam glimmering on the sepulchre.

Spirit, who far above yon silent sky
Sleep'st in the bosom of Eternity,
Till the last trumpet's startling voice shall shake
This trembling globe, and bid the dead awake;
If aught can break thy tranquil dream of bliss,
If thou can'st hover near a world like this,
Let thy celestial form at night descend,
And o'er the slumbers of thy children bend:
Soothe all their sorrows, steep each troubled breast
In the pure essence of thy heavenly rest;
And lead their gentle Spirits up the sky
To the bright home of Immortality.

K.S. August, 1819.


To his Most Gracious Majesty the King of Clubs.

The Humble Petition of Jeremy Gubbins, Grocer,

dealer in tea, tobacco, and snuff, No. 30, Bishopsgate-street Within; who, having diligently perused the account of the proceedings in his Majesty's most excellent Club, humbly intreats that he will take his piteous case into consideration.

Please your Majesty, I hope your Majesty will excuse my neglect of the forms requisite to addressing so great a personage, on the score of my utter ignorance, having never been acquainted with the etiquette of Courts. Wherefore, trusting to your Majesty's sweetness of temper, I will proceed to state my case:

My father (peace be to his soul!) was a worthy and respectable Grocer, No. 30, Bishopsgate-street Within. He, poor man! cared little for the luxuries of life, while he had his slice of bread and butter and cup of tea in the morning, and his pot of beer and pipe in the evening.

Having such a good example continually before me, I was, from my youth upward, a pattern of prudent and well-tried economy; indeed, my father, while he patted my head, used to say, that “the honour and fortune of the Gubbinses would never suffer while I

representative of the family.”

When my poor

father (peace be to his soul !) departed this mortal life, I succeeded to the fortune and estate of the Gubbinses in Bishopsgate-street, whence I date the melancholy era of

was the

« AnteriorContinuar »