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WEEHAWKEN AND THE NEW YORK
CALM AND STORM ON LAKE LEMAN.
FROM "CHILDE HAROLD,“ CANTO 111. CLEAR, placid Leman ! thy contrasted lake, With the wild world I dwelt in, is a thing Which warns me, with its stillness, to forsake Earth's troubled waters for a purer spring. This quict sail is as a noiseless wing To waft me from distraction ; once I lovel Torn ocean's roar, but thy soft murmuring
Sounds sweet as if a sister's voice reproved, That I with stern delights should e'er have been
WEEHAWKEY! In thy mountain scenery yet,
All we adore of Nature in her will And frolic hour of infancy is met ;
And never has a summer's morning smiled l'pon a lovelier scene than the full eye Of the enthusiast revels on, — when high
Amid thy forest solitudes he climbs
O'er crags 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,
It is the hush of night, and all between
shore, Of flowers yet fresh with childhood ; on the ear
Drops the light drip of the suspended oar. Or chirps the grasshopper one good-night carol
Like the death-music of his coming doom,
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.
He is an evening reveller, who makes
• The last stanza was written just before the author's death, and published shortly alter in the Cincinnutí Gaselte.
There seems a floating whisper on the hill, He is come! he is come ! do ve not beloki
Giant of air ! we bid thee hail ! -
To clasp the zone of the firmament,
From mountain to mountain the visible space! And storm, and darkness, ye are wondrous strong,
Darker, - still darker ! the whirlwinds bear Yet lovely in your strength, as is the light The dust of the plains to the middle air ; Of a dark eye in woman! Far along,
And hark to the crashing, long and loud, From peak to peak, the rattling crags among of the chariot of God in the thunder-cloud ! Leaps the live thunder! Not from one lone You may trace its path by the flashes that start cloud,
| From the rapid wheels where'er they dart, But every mountain now hath found a tongue, As the fire-bolts leap to the world below,
And Jura answers, through her misty shroud, And food the skies with a lurid glow. Back to the joyous Alps, who call to her aloud !.
What roar is that?- 't is the rain that breaks And this is in the night : -- most glorious In torrents away from the airy lakes, night!
Heavily poured on the shuddering ground, Thou wert not sent for slumber ! let me be And shedding a nameless horror round. A sharer in thy fierce and far delight, - Ah! well-known woods, and mountains, and skies, A portion of the tempest and of thee ! With the very clouds ! - ye are lost to my eyes. How the lit lake shines, a phosphoric sea, I seek ye vainly, and see in your place And the big rain comes dancing to the earth! The shadowy tempest that sweeps througn space, And now again 't is black, -- and now, the glee A whirling ocean that fills the wall Of the loud hills shakes with its mountain of the crystal heaven, and buries all. mirth,
And I, cut off from the world, remain As if they did rejoice o'er a young earthquake's Alone with the terrible hurricane. birth.
WILLIAM CULLEN BRYANT.
And lo! on the wing of the heavy gales,
They darken fast ; and the golden blaze
THE DESERTED VILLAGE.
And many a gambol frolicked o'er the ground, Those gentle hours that plenty bade to bloom, And sleights of art and feats of strength went Those calm desires that asked but little room, round ;
Those healthful sports that graced the peaceful And still, as each repeated pleasure tired,
scene, Succeeding sports the mirthful band inspired; Lived in each look, and brightened all the The dancing pair that simply sought renown,
| Sweet Auburn ! parent of the blissful hour, The matron's glance that would those looks re- Thy glades forlorn confess the tyrant's power. prove, —
Here, as I take my solitary rounds, These were thy charms, sweet village ! sports like Amidst thy tangling walks and ruined grounds, these,
And, many a year elapsed, return to view With sweet succession, taught e'en toil to please ; Where once the cottage stood, the hawthorn grew, These round thy bowers their cheerful influence Remembrance wakes, with all her busy train, shed,
Swells at my breast, and turns the past to pain. These were thy charms, – but all these charms are fled !
In all my wanderings round this world of care,
In all my griefs — and God has given my share — Sweet smiling village, lozeliest of the lawn,
I still had hopes my latest hours to crown, Thy sports are fled, and all thy charms with
Amidst these humble bowers to lay me down ; drawn;
To husband out life's taper at the close, Amidst thy bowers the tyrant's hand is seen,
And keep the flame from wasting by repose; And desolation saddens all thy green ;
I still had hopes — for pride attends us still — One only master grasps the whole domain,
Amidst the swains to show my book-learned skill, And half a tillage stints thy smiling plain ;
Around my fire an evening group to draw, No more thy glassy brook reflects the day,
And tell of all I felt and all I saw; Bat, choked with sedges, works its weedy way;
And, as a hare, whom hounds and horns pursue, Along thy glades, a solitary guest,
Pants to the place from whence at first she flew, The hollow-sounding bittern guards its nest;
I still had hopes, my long vexations past,
Here to return, — and die at home at last.
O blest retirement ! friend to life's decline, And the long grass o'ertops the mouldering wall,
Retreats from care, that never must be mine, And, trembling, shrinking from the spoiler's hand,
How blest is he who crowns in shades like these Far, far away thy children leave the land.
A youth of labor with an age of ease; Ill fares the land, to hastening ills a prey,
Who quits a world where strong temptations try, Where wealth accumulates and men decay :
And, since 't is hard to combat, learns to fly! Princes and lords may flourish, or may fade;
For him no wretches, born to work and weep, A breath can inake them, as a breath has made ; Explore the mine, or tempt the dan
Explore the mine, or tempt the dangerous deep ; But a bold peasantry, their country's pride,
No surly porter stands in guilty state, When once destroyed, can never be supplied.
To spurn imploring famine from the gate :
But on he moves to meet his latter end, A time there was, ere England's griefs began, Angels around befriending virtue's friend; When every rood of ground maintained its man ; Sinks to the grave with unperceived decay, For him light Labor spread her wholesome store. While resignation gently slopes the way; Just gave what life required, but gave no more ; And, all his prospects brightening to the last, His best companions, innocence and health ; His heaven commences ere the world be past. And his best riches, ignorance of wealth.
Sweet was the sound, when oft, at evening's But times are altered ; trade's unfeeling train close, Usurp the land and dispossess the swain ; Up yonder hill the village murmur rose; Along the lawn, where scattered hamlets rose, There, as I passed with careless steps and slow, Unwieldy wealth and cumbrous pomp repose, The mingling notes came softened from below ; And every want to luxury allied,
The swain responsive as the milkmaid sung, And every pang that folly pays to pride. | The sober herd that lowed to meet their young ;