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Yet, prophet-like, that lone one stood,
With dauntless words and high, That shook the sere leaves from the wood,
As if a storm pass'd by; Saying, “We are twins in death, proud Sun, Thy face is cold, thy race is run
'Tis mercy bids thee go; For thou, ten thousand, thousand years, Hast seen the tide of human tears,
That shall no longer flow. “What though beneath thee man puth forth
His pomp, his pride, his skill ;
And arts that made fire, flood, and earth,
The vassals of his will ;
Yet mourn I not thy parted sway,
Thou dim discrowned king of day:
For all those trophied arts
And triumphs that beneath thee sprang,
Heal'd not a passion or a pang
Entail'd on human hearts.
“Go,-let oblivion's curtain fall
Upon the stage of men,
Nor with thy rising beams recal
Life's tragedy again ;
Its piteous pageants bring not back,
Nor waken flesh upon the rack,
Of pain anew to writhe ;
Stretch'd in diseases' shapes abhorr'd,
Or mown in battle by the sword,
Like grass beneath the scythe. “Even I am weary
skies To watch thy fading fire, Test of all sunless agonies,
Behold not me expire.
My lips that speak thy dirge of death-
Their rounded gasp and gurgling breath
To see thou shalt not boast.
The eclipse of Nature spreads my pall-
The majesty of darkness shall
Receive my parting ghost ! “This spirit shall return to Him
That gave its heavenly spark ;
Yet think not, Sun, it shall be dim,
When thou thyself art dark !-
No! it shall live again, and shine
In bliss unknown to beams of thine,
By Him recall’d to breath
Who captive led captivity,
Who robb’d the grave of victory,
And took the sting from death.
“Go, Sun, while mercy holds me up,
On Nature's awful waste,
To drink this last and bitter cup
Of grief that man shall taste
Go, tell the night that hides thy face,
Thou saw'st the last of Adam's race
On earth's sepulchral clod,
The darkening universe defy
To quench his immortality,
Or shake his trust in God.”
THE DYING GIRL-CONSUMPTION.
A BEAUTY clothes her hectic cheek,
A radiance fills that sunken eye,
But when her mellow'd accents speak
They make the sadden'd hearer sigh;
For softer sink they in their cadence far,
Than Autumn's dying tone beneath some mournful star.
They bore her to that healthful isle
Whose rocks of terrac'd verdure rise
And catch the morn's celestial smile,
Responsive to the greeting skies;
And vainly prophesied the island breeze
Would freshen her white cheeks, and waft away disease.
But there she sicken'd, day by day,
In shrinking paleness, like a flower,
Yet from her glance there shin’d a ray
Of almost supernatural power;
With such clear brightness did her eyeballs roll,
That through them Fancy saw the lustre of the soul !
For mother too, and far-off home,
Her plaintive heart in secret cried,
And backward long'd her soul to roam,
Since in the churchyard, side by side,
Under the green turf, where loved sisters lay,
She would her dust might wait the awful Judgment-day.
And they behold her once again
In her own room, with placid brow;
So pale, you see each azure vein
Meander through her beauty now:
Yet, like a pulse of rosy light at even,
Oft to her faded cheek a crimson flush is given.
Seldom she sighs, but veils within
Much that would grieve fond Love to know,
And when some pensive tears begin,
She tries to check their overflow;
Safe in the arms of Jesu rests her soul,
Nor does the early grave with gloom the mind control.
Not for herself, but for the heart
Of love parental, she could weep ;
And often in her dreams will start,
And make some watching gazer weep,
As faintly through her lips there steals a word-
And “Oh! my mother dear !” is like low music heard.
She dies,-as beauty ever dies
When sad consumption finds a tomb
With brilliance in her deep-set eyes,
And on her face a healthless bloom ;-
No harsh transition, but a soft decay,
Like dream-born tones of night, that melt by dawn away.
And now, the dying scenes advance
Nearer and nearer to the goal,
For death-gleams in that deepen'd glance
Betray the egress of the soul ;
Solemn she is, but no complaining sigh
Breaks from a burden'd heart, to think her youth must die.
They wheel her round each garden-walk,
Where oft her lisping childhood play'd,
And loved to hear the old nurse talk,
And soothe her when she seem'd afraid ;
While danced her ringlets as she prattled on,
More playful than the birds she loved to gaze upon.
She looks, as they alone who feel
The last of earth before them lies,
While o'er them soften'd memories steal,
Which melt the heart into the eyes-
For tree and turret, woods and uplands, all
Back to the dying girl her childish past recal!
Dream-like the hush of twilight floats,
Veiling the lilac bowers around;
While in the air melodious notes
Of soft dejection sweetly sound.
The landscape, like a conscious mourner, seems
To lie in brooding shade, and sadden as it dreams.
Now, to her chamber back return'd,
Before the casement calm reclin'd,
Just as the broad horizon burn'd
With the last blush day left behind-
Her eye was center'd in the dying sun,
Fading like feeble youth, before life's course is run.
Hush'd is the breezeless air, and deep
The awe around each mourner stealing;
Bend o'er her form, but do not weep-
Death is too grand for outward feeling !
As sinks the sun beneath yon golden sea,
So ebbs her spirit back to God's eternity.
The tempest swept fiercely across the wild deep,
Kathleen arose from her pillow;
For in vain had she sought the calm solace of sleep
While her husband was out on the billow,
And the death-watch tick'd loud as she silently lay,
And the banshee had mournfully cried ;
And the bright dreams of pleasure soon melted away
From poor Kathleen the fisherman's bride!
Morn came, but the storm still fearfully rag'd,
And the billows ran high on the shore ;
And the terror of Kathleen was still unassuag'd
Each fleet moment increas'd it the more.
She thought of his love, and his free happy heart,
And she thought of his fate then, and sigh’d;
And affliction seem'd sharp'ning bis withering dart,
For poor Kathleen the fisherman's bride!
On the dangerous shore she now fearlessly rov'd,
For she reck'd not the tempest's wild breath ;
And there, on the rocks, was the form that she lov'd,
Cold, cold in the slumber of death!
A shriek pass’d her lips that rose high o'er the storm,
As she dropp'd on her knees by his side,
And a mighty wave ebbing bore out the fair form
Of poor Kathleen the fisherman's bride!
Mrs. Wemans. "I HEAR thee speak of the better land ; Thou call'st its children a happy band : Mother, Oh! where is that radiant shore ? Shall we not seek it, and weep no more ?Is it where the flower of the orange blows, And the fire-flies glance through the myrtle boughs ?"
“Not there-not there, my child !”
“Is it where the feathery palm-trees rise,
And the date grows ripe under sunny skies?
Or midst the green islands of glittering seas,
Where fragrant forests perfume the breeze ;
And strange bright birds on their starry wings
Bear the rich hues of all glorious things ?”
“ Not there—not there, my child !”
“ Is it far away, in some regions old,
Where the rivers wander o'er sands of gold;
Where the burning rays of the ruby shine,
And the diamond lights up the secret mine,
And the pearls gleam forth from a coral strand
Is it there, sweet mother, that better land ?"
-“ Not there—not there, my child!”
“ Eye hath not seen it, my gentle boy ;
Ear hath not heard its deep songs of joy:
Dreams cannot picture a world so fair-
Sorrow and death may not enter there :
Time doth not breathe on its fadeless bloom,
For beyond the clouds, and beyond the tomb,
- It is there—it is there, my child !”
It must be so ;-Plato, thou reasonest well ;–
Else whence this pleasing hope, this fond desire,
This longing after immortality ?
Or whence this secret dread and inward horror
Of falling into nought ? Why shrinks the soul
Back on herself, and startles at destruction ?
'Tis the divinity that stirs within us;
'Tis Heaven itself that points out an hereafter,
And intimates eternity to man.
Eternity !—[Rises and comes forward. )-Thou pleasing,
dreadful thought !-
Through what variety of untried being,
Through what new scenes and changes must we pass !
The wide, the unbounded prospect lies before me,
But shadows, clouds, and darkness, rest upon it.
Here will I hold: if there's a Power above us-
(And that there is, all nature cries aloud
Through all her works)-he must delight in virtue ;
And that which he delights in must be happy.
But when or where this world was made for Cæsar,
I am weary of conjectures: this must end 'em.
[Goes back to the table, laying his hand on his sword.]