Page images
PDF

"False parent of mankind!

Obdurate, proud, and blind.
I sprinkle thee with soft celestial dews,
Thy lost maternal heart to re-infuse!
Scattering this far-fetched moisture from my wings,
Upon the act a blessing I implore,
Of which the rivers in their secret springs,
The rivers stained so oft with human gore,
Are conscious; may the like return no more!
May Discord—for a seraph's care
Shall be attended with a bolder prayer—
May she, who once disturbed the seats of bliss

These mortal spheres above,
Be chained for ever to the black abyss!
And thou, O rescued earth, by peace and love,
And merciful desires, thy sanctity approve!"

The spirit ended his mysterious rite.
And the pure vision closed in darkness infmite.

PRESENTIMENTS.

Presentiments! they judge not right
Who deem that ye from open light

Retire in fear of shame;
All hea?ien-borti instincts shun the touch
Of vulgar sense, and, being such,

Such privilege ye claim.

The tear whose source I could not guess,
The deep sigh that seemed fatherless,

Were mine in early days;
And now, unforced by Time to part
With Fancy, I obey my heart,

And venture on your praise.

What though some busy foes to good,
Too potent over nerve and blood,

Lurk near you, and combine
To taint the health which ye infuse;
This hides not from the moral muse

Your origin divine.

How oft from you, derided powers!
Comes Faith that in auspicious hours

Builds castles, not of air;
Bodings unsanctioned by the will
Flow from your visionary skill,

And teach us to beware.

The bosom-weight, your stubborn gift
That no philosophy can lift,

Shall vanish, if ye please,
Like morning mist; and, where it lay
The spirits at your bidding play

In gaiety and ease.

Star-guided contemplations move

Through space, though calm, not raised above

Prognostics that ye rule;
The naked Indian of the wild,
And haply, too, the cradled child,

Are pupils of your school.
But who can fathom your intents,
Number their signs or instruments?

A rainbow, a sunbeam,
A subtle smell that spring unbinds,
Dead pause abrupt of midnight winds,

An echo, or a dream.
The laughter of the Christmas hearth
With sighs of self-exhausted mirth

Ye feelingly reprove;

And daily, in the conscious breast,
Your visitations are a test
And exercise of love.

When some great change gives boundless scope
To an exulting nation's hope,

Oft, startled and made wise
By your low-breathed interpretings,
The simply-meek foretaste the springs

Of bitter contraries.

Ye daunt the proud array of war,
Pervade the lonely ocean far

As sail hath been unfurled;
For dancers in the festive hall
What ghastly partners hath your call

Fetched from the shadowy world !,

Tis said that warnings ye dispense,
Emboldened by a keener sense;

That men have lived for whom,
With dread precision, ye made clear
The hour that in a distant year

Should knell them to the tomb.
Unwelcome insight! Yet there are
P,lest times when mystery is laid bare;

Truth shows a glorious face,
While on that isthmus which commands
The councils of both worlds she stands,

Sage Spirits I by your grace.

God, who instructs the brutes to scent
All changes of the element,

Whose wisdom fixed the scale
Of natures, for our wants provides
By higher, sometimes humbler, guides,

When lights of Reason fail.

THE PRIMROSE OF THE ROCK.

A Eock there is whose homely front

The passing traveller slights; Yet there the glowworms hang their lamps,

Like stars, at various heights; And one coy primrose to that rock

The vernal breeze invites.

What hideous warfare hath been waged,

What kingdoms overthrown,
Since first I spied that primrose-tuft

And marked it for my own:
A lasting link in Nature's chain

From highest heaven let down!

The flowers, still faithful to the stems,

Their fellowship renew;
The stems are faithful to the root,

That worketh out of view;
And to the rock the root adheres

In every fibre true.

Close clings to earth the living rock.

Though threatening still to fall;
The earth is constant to her sphere;

Ami Cod upholds them all:
So blooms this lonely plant, nor dreads

Her annual funeral.

******

Here closed the meditative stram;

Hut air breathed soft that day, The hoary mountain-heights were cheered.

The sunny vale looked gay; And to the primrose of the rock

I cave this after-lay.

I sang, "Let myriads of bright flowers,

Like thee• in field and grove Revive unenvied—mightier far

Than tremblings that reprove Our vernal tendencies to hops

In God's redeeming love:

"That love which changed, for wan disease,

For sorrow that had bent
O'er hopeless dust, for withered age,

Their moral element,
And turned the thistles of a curse

To types beneficent.

"Sin-blighted though we are, we too,

The reasoning sons of men, From one oblivious winter called

Shall rise, and breathe again; And in eternal summer lose

Our threescore years and ten.

"To humbleness of heart descends

This prescience from on high,
The faith that elevates the just,

Before and when they die;
And makes each soul a separate heaven,

A court for Deity."

A FLOWER GARDEN.

Tell me, ye zephyrs! that unfold,

While fluttering o'er this gay recess,

Pinions that fanned the teeming mould

Of Eden's blissful wilderness,

Did only softly-stealing hours,

There close the peaceful lives of flowers*

« PreviousContinue »