Page images
PDF

Behind him his four sisters, each wrapt in sable veil, Between the tambour's dismal strokes take up their

doleful tale ; When stops the muffled drum, ye hear their brother

less bewailing, And all the people, far and near, cry,~"Alas! alas,

for Celin!”

0, lovely lies he on the bier above the purple pall, The flower of all Granada's youth, the loveliest of

them all; His dark, dark eyes are closed, and his rosy lip is pale, The crust of blood lies black and dim upon his

burnish'd mail, And evermore the hoarse tambour breaks in upon

their wailing, Its sound is like no earthly sound, "Alas! alas, for

Celin!”

The Moorish maid at the lattice stands, the Moor

stands at his door, One maid is wringing of her hands, and one is weep

ing sore : Down to the dust men bow their heads, and ashes

black they strew, Upon their broider'd garments of crimson, green and

blueBefore each gate the bier stands still, then bursts the

loud bewailing, From door and lattice, high and low " Alas! alas,

for Celin!"

An old, old woman cometh forth, when she hears the

people cry; Her hair is white as silver, like horn her glazed eye. 'Twas she that nursed him at her breast, that nursed

him long ago; She knows not whom they all lament, but soon she

well shall know

With one deep shriek she through doth break, when

her ears receive their wailing “Let me kiss my Celin ere I die-Alas! alas, for Celin!”

LOCKHEART.

ODE. O MELANCHOLY Moon, Queen of the midnight, though thou palest away

Far in the dusky west, to vanish soon Under the hills that catch thy waning ray, Still art thou beautiful beyond all spheres, The friend of grief, and confidant of tears.

Mine earliest friend wert thou : My boyhood's passion was to stretch me under The locust tree, and, through the chequer'd

bough, Watch thy far pathway in the clouds, and wonder At thy strange loveliness, and wish to be The nearest star to roam the heavens with thee.

Youth grew; but as it came,
And sadness with it, still, with joy, I stole
To gaze, and dream, and breathe perchance the

name
That was the early music of my soul,
And seem'd upon thy pictured disk to trace
Remember'd features of a radiant face.

And manhood, though it bring
A winter to my bosom, cannot turn

Mine eyes from thy lone loveliness; still spring
My tears to meet thee, and the spirit stern
Falters, in secret, with the ancient thrill-
The boyish yearning to be with thee still.

Would it were so; for earth
Grows shadowy, and her fairest planets fail ;

And her sweet chimes, that once were woke to

mirth,
Turn to a moody melody of wail,
And through her stony throngs I go alone,
Even with the heart I cannot turn to stone.

Would it were so; for still
Thou art my only counsellor, with whom

Mine eyes can have no bitter shame to fill,
Nor my weak lips to murmur at the doom
Of solitude, which is so sad and sore.
Weighing like lead upon my bosom's core.

A boyish thought, and weak:
I shall look up to thee from the deep sea,

And in the land of palms, and on the peak
Of her wild hills, still turn my eyes to thee;
And then perhaps lie down in solemn rest,
With naught but thy pale beams upon my breast.

Let it be so indeed-
Earth hath her peace beneath the trampled stone:

And let me perish where no heart shall bleed, And naught, save passing winds, shall make my

moan; No tears, save night's, to wash my humble shrine, And watching o'er me, no pale face but thine.

DR. BIRD.

THE CORAL INSECT. Toil on! toil on! ye ephemeral train, Who build in the tossing and treacherous main; . Toil on--for the wisdom of man ye mock, With your sand-based structures and domes of rock; Your columns the fathomless fountains lave, And your arches spring up to the crested wave; Ye’re a puny race, thus to boldly rear A fabric so vast, in a realm so drear.

Ye bind the deep with your secret zone,
The ocean is seal’d, and the surge a stone;
Fresh wreaths from the coral pavement spring,
Like the terraced pride of Assyria's king;
The turf looks green where the breakers rollid;
O'er the whirlpool ripens the rind of gold ;
The sea-snatch'd isle is the home of men,
And the mountains exult where the wave hath been.

But why do ye plant 'neath the billows dark
The wrecking reef for the gallant bark ?
There are snares enough on the tented field,
'Mid the blossom'd sweets that the valleys yield;
There are serpents to coil, ere the flowers are up;
There's a poison drop in man's purest cup;
There are foes that watch for his cradle breath,
And why need ye sow the floods with death ?

With mouldering bones the deeps are white,
From the ice-clad pole to the tropics bright:
The mermaid hath twisted her fingers cold,
With the mesh of the sea-boy's curls of gold,
And the gods of ocean have frown'd to see
The mariner's bed in their halls of glee ;-
Hath earth no graves, that ye thus must spread
The boundless sea for the thronging dead?

Ye build-ye build-but ye enter not in,
Like the tribes whom the desert devour'd in their sin;
From the land of promise ye fade and die,
Ere its verdure gleams forth on your weary eye;-
As the kings of the cloud-crown'd pyramid,
Their noteless bones in oblivion hid,
Ye slumber unmark:d 'mid the desolate main,
While the wonder and pride of your works remain.

MRS. SIGOURNEY.

Next time he put in Alexander the Great,
With a garment that Dorcas had made-for a weight;
And though clad in armour from sandals to crown,
The hero rose up, and the garment went down.

A long row of alms-houses, amply endow'd
By a well-esteem'd Pharisee, busy and proud,
Now loaded one scale, while the other was prest
By those mites the poor widow dropp'd into the chest;
Up flew the endowment, not weighing an ounce,
And down, down, the farthing's worth came with a

bounce.

By further experiments (no matter how)
He found that ten chariots weigh'd less than one

- plough.
A sword, with gilt trappings, rose up in the scale,
Though balanced by only a tenpenny nail.
A lord and a lady went up at full sail,
When a bee chanced to light on the opposite scale.
Ten doctors, ten lawyers, two courtiers, one earl,
Ten counsellors' wigs full of powder and curl,
All heap'd in one balance, and swinging from thence,
Weigh'd less than some atoms of candour and

sense ; A first-water diamond, with brilliants begirt, Than one good potato just wash'd from the dirt ;Yet not mountains of silver and gold would suffice, One pearl to outweigh—'t was the pearl of great

price!

At last the whole world was bowl'd in at the grate With the soul of a beggar to serve for a weight; When the former sprung up with so strong a rebuff, That it made a vast rent, and escaped at the roof While the scale with the soul in 't so mightily fell, That it jerk'd the philosopher out of his cell.

Miss J. TAYLOR.

« PreviousContinue »