Puslapio vaizdai

seen in our own times how completely the subsequent compositions of the most celebrated of our living poets have falsified the opinions of his genius, which were founded on his youthful attempts. It would, therefore, be both unjust and dangerous to criticise with severity a Poem like "Yamoyden," which, though it may betray the marks of a juvenile pen, yet testifies the existence of no inconsiderable powers in the author. This volume is the joint production of two young writers; of whom one (Mr. Eastburn) was only twenty years of age, and his friend, who has performed the office of Editor, eighteen, at the time of its being written. The story of King Philip has been made known to the English reader by the author of the "Sketch Book," and it is said that one of the most voluminous of our own poets is about to publish on the same subject; which is thus adverted to by the Authors of the present Poem.

But in that land whence thy destroyers came,

A sacred bard thy Champion shall be found; He of the laureate wreath for thee shall claim The hero's honours, to earth's farthest bound, Where Albion's tongue is heard, or Albion's songs resound.

It will be immediately perceived, that the style

of this Poem is in imitation of Walter Scott, whose poetical compositions from this and some other instances of copyism, appear to be very general favourites in America. It would not be difficult in perusing this Poem, to point out many errors, especially in the quantity of words-a fault to which the writers of America are remarkably prone. It was found impossible to give any idea of the story, in making the extracts from "Yamoyden," and it was therefore thought more expedient to give the Introduction, and one of the Cantos entire; it will be perceived, that the latter contains two songs of considerable beauty and feeling.


Go forth, sad fragments of a broken strain,
The last that either bard shall e'er essay!
The hand can ne'er attempt the chords again,
That first awoke them, in a happier day :
Where sweeps the ocean breeze its desert way,
His requiem murmurs o'er the moaning wave;
And he who feebly now prolongs the lay,

Shall ne'er the minstrel's hallowed honours crave;
His harp lies buried deep, in that untimely grave!

Friend of my youth! with thee began the love

Of sacred song; the wont, in golden dreams, Mid classic realms of splendours past to rove,

O'er haunted steep, and by immortal streams; Where the blue wave, with sparkling bosom gleams - Round shores, the mind's eternal heritage, For ever lit by memory's twilight beams;

Where the proud dead, that live in storied page,
Beckon, with awful port, to glory's earlier age.

There would we linger oft, entranc'd, to hear,
O'er battle fields, the epic thunders roll;
Or list, where tragic wail upon the ear,

Through Argive palaces shrill echoing, stole;
There would we mark, uncurbed by all control,
In central heaven, the Theban eagle's flight;
Or hold communion with the musing soul

Of sage or bard, who sought, mid Pagan night, In lov'd Athenian groves, for truth's eternal light. Homeward we turned, to that fair land, but late Redeemed from the strong spell that bound it fast, Where Mystery, brooding o'er the waters, sate And kept the key, till three millenniums past; When, as creation's noblest work was last, Latest, to man it was vouchsafed, to see Nature's great wonder, long by clouds o'ercast, And veiled in sacred awe, that it might be An empire and a home, most worthy for the Free.

And here, forerunners strange and meet were found,
Of that blest freedom, only dreamed before ;-
Dark were the morning mists, that lingered round
Their birth and story, as the hue they bore.
"Earth was their Mother;"-or they knew no more,
Or would not that their secret should be told;
For they were grave and silent; and such lore,
To stranger ears, they loved not to unfold,

The long-transmitted tales their sires were taught of


Kind nature's commoners, from her they drew

Their needful wants, and learnt not how to hoard; And him whom strength and wisdom crown'd, they knew, But with no servile reverence, as their lord. And on their mountain summits they adored One great, good Spirit, in his high abode, And thence their incense and orisons poured

To his pervading presence, that abroad

They felt through all his works,—their Father, King, and God.

And in the mountain mist, the torrent's spray,
The quivering forest, or the glassy flood,
Soft falling showers, or hues of orient day,
They imaged Spirits beautiful and good;
But when the tempest roared, with voices rude,
Or fierce, red lightning fired the forest pine,
Or withering heats untimely seared the wood,
The angry forms they saw of powers malign;
These they besought to spare, those blest for aid divine.

As the fresh sense of life, through every vein,
With the pure air they drank, inspiring came,
Comely they grew, patient of toil and pain,

And, as the fleet deer's, agile was their frame;
Of meaner vices scarce they knew the name;

These simple truths went down from sire to son,— To reverence age,—the sluggish hunter's shame, And craven warrior's infamy, to shun,

And still avenge each wrong, to friends or kindred done.

From forest shades they peered, with awful dread,
When, uttering flame and thunder from its side,
The ocean-monster, with broad wings outspread,
Came, ploughing gallantly the virgin tide.
Few years have past, and all their forests' pride

From shores and hills has vanished, with the race,
Their tenants erst, from memory who have died,
Like airy shapes, which eld was wont to trace,
In each green thicket's depths, and lone, sequester-
ed place.

And many a gloomy tale Tradition yet

Saves from oblivion, of their struggles vain, Their prowess and their wrongs, for rhymer meet, To people scenes, where still their names remain; -And so began our young, delighted strain,

That would evoke the plumed chieftains brave,
And bid their martial hosts arise again,

Where Narraganset's tides roll by their grave,
And Haup's romantic steeps are piled above the wave.

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