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THE BIRD LET LOOSE IN EASTERN SKIES.
THE bird, let loose in Eastern skies,*
When hastening fondly home,
Ne'er stoops to earth her wing, nor flies
Where idle warblers roam..
But high she shoots through air, and light,
Above all low delay,
Where nothing earthly bounds her flight,
Nor shadow dims her way.
ADORATION OF THE DEITY IN THE MIDST OF HIS WORKS.
THE turf shall be my fragrant shrine,
My temple, Lord! that arch of thine:
My censer's breath the mountain airs,
And silent thoughts my only prayers.
My choir shall be the moonlight waves,
When murmuring homeward to their caves,
Or when the stillness of the sea,
Even more than music, breathes of thee!
I'll seck, by day, some glade unknown,
All light and silence, like thy throne!
And the pale stars shall be, at night,
The only eyes that watch my rite.
Thy Heaven, on which 't is bliss to look,
Shall be my pure and shining book,
Where I shall read, in words of flame,
The glories of thy wond'rous name,
I'll read thy anger in the rack
That clouds awhile the day-beam's track;
Thy mercy in the azure hue
Of sunny brightness breaking through!
*The Carrier Pigeon, it is well known, flies at an elevated pitch, in order to surmount every obstacle between her and the place to which the is destined.
There's nothing bright, above, below,
From flowers that bloom to stars that glow,
But in its light my soul can see
Some feature of thy Deity!
There's nothing dark, below, above,
But in its gloom I trace thy love,
And meekly wait that moment, when
Thy touch shall turn all bright again!
BOWLES' Sonnets are the finest in the English language. They are like the exquisite poetry of Collins. They have all his tenderness, much of his fine fancy, and the same rich economy of words that are halo'd with thought." Their music dwells long upon the ear, and their melancholy pensiveness of feeling soothes the heart.
LANGUID and sad, and slow, from day to day
I journey on, yet pensive turn to view,
Where the rich landscape gleams with softer hue,
The streams and vales and hills that steal away.
So fares it with the children of the earth.
For when life's goodly prospect opens round,
Their spirits beat to tread that fairy ground
Where every vale sounds to the pipe of mirth.
But them vain hope and easy youth beguiles;
And soon a longing look like me they cast
Back o'er the pleasing prospect of the past.
Yet fancy points, where still far onward smiles
Some sunny spot, and her fair colouring blends,
Till cheerless on their path the night descends.
As slow I climb the cliff's ascending side,
Much musing on the track of terror past,
When o'er the dark wave rode the howling blast,
Pleas'd I look back, and view the tranquil tide
That laves the pebbled shores; and now the beam
Of evening smiles on the gray battlement,
And yon forsaken tow'r that time has rent:
The lifted oar far off with silver gleam
Is touch'd, and the hush'd billows seem to sleep.
Sooth'd by the scene e'en thus on sorrow's breast
A kindred stillness steals, and bids her rest;
Whilst sad airs stilly sigh along the deep,
Like melodies that mourn upon the lyre,
Waked by the breeze, and as they mourn, expire.
TO BAMBOROUGH CASTLE.
YE holy tow'rs that shade the wave-worn steep,
Long may ye rear your aged brows sublime,
Though hurrying silent by, relentless time
Assail you, and the wintry whirlwind sweep.
For, far from blazing grandeur's crowded halls,
Here Charity has fix'd her chosen seat;
Oft listening tearful when the wild winds beat
With hollow bodings round your ancient walls;
And Pity, at the dark and stormy hour
Of midnight, when the moon is hid on high,
Keeps her lone watch upon the topmost tow'r,
And turns her ear to each expiring cry,
Blest if her aid some fainting wretch might save,
And snatch him cold and speechless from the grave
TO THE RIVER TWEED.
O TWEED! a stranger that with wandering feet
O'er hill and dale has journey'd many a mile,
(If so his weary thoughts he may beguile)
Delighted turns thy beauteous scenes to greet.
The waving branches that romantic bend
O'er thy tall banks, a soothing charm bestow.
The murmurs of thy wandering wave below
Seem to his ear the pity of a friend.
Delightful stream! though now along thy shore,
When spring returns in all her wonted pride,
The shepherd's distant pipe is heard no more;
Yet here with pensive peace could I abide,
Far from the stormy world's tumultuous roar,
To muse upon thy banks at even tide.
EVENING, as slow thy placid shades descend,
Veiling with gentlest touch the landscape still,
The lonely battlement, and farthest hill'
And wood-I think of those that have no friend:
Who now perhaps by melancholy led,
From the broad blaze of day, where pleasure flaunts,
Retiring, wander mid thy lonely haunts
Unseen, and mark the tints that o'er thy bed
Hang lovely; oft to musing Fancy's eye
Present.ng fairy vales, where the tir'd mind
Might rest, beyond the murmurs of mankind,
Nor hear the hourly moans of misery.
Ah! beauteous views, that Hope's fair gleams the while
Should smile like you, and perish as they smile!
CLYDESDALE, as thy romantic vales I leave,
And bid farewell to each retiring hill,
Where musing Fancy seems to linger still,
Tracing the broad bright landscape; much I grieve
That, mingled with the toiling crowd, no more
I may return your varied views to mark
Of rocks amid the sunshine tow'ring dark;
Of rivers winding wild, and mountains hoar,
Or castle gleaming on the distant steep!
Yet still your brighest images shall smile,
To charm the lingering stranger, and beguile
His way; whilst I the poor remembrance keep
Like those, that muse on some sweet vision flown,
To cheer me wandering on my way alone.
On these white cliffs, that calm above the flood
Uplift their shadowy heads, and at their feet
Scarce hear the surge that has for ages beat,.
Sure many a lonely wanderer has stood;
And while the distant murmur met his ear,
And o'er the distant billows the still eve
Sail'd slow, has thought of all his heart must leave
To-morrow; of the friends he lov'd most dear;
Of social scenes from which he wept to part.
But if, like me, he knew how fruitless all
The thoughts that would full fain the past recall;
Soon would he quell the risings of his heart,
And brave the wild winds and unhearing tide,
The world his country, and his God his guide.
LANDING AT OSTEND.
THE orient beam illumes the parting oar,
From yonder azure track emerging white
The earliest sail slow gains upon the sight,
Meantime, far off the rear of darkness flies.
Yet, mid the beauties of the morn unmov'd,
Like one, forever torn from all he lov'd,
Towards Albion's heights I turn my longing eyes,
Where ev'ry pleasure seem'd ere while to dwell:
Yet boots it not to think or to complain,
Musing sad ditties to the reckless main.
To dreams like these adieu! the pealing bell
Speaks of the hour that stays not, and the day
To life's sad turmoil calls my heart away.
"T WAS morn, and beauteous on the mountain's brow (Hung with the blushes of the bending vine)
Stream'd the blue light, when on the sparkling Rhine
We bounded, and the white waves round the prow
In murmurs parted; varying as we go,
Lo! the woods open and the rocks retire;
Some convent's ancient walls, or glistening spire
Mid the bright landscape's tract, unfolding slow.
Here dark with furrow'd aspect, like despair,
Hangs the bleak cliff, there on the woodland's side
The shadowy sunshine pours its streaming tide;
Whilst Hope, enchanted with a scene so fair,
Would wish to linger many a summer's day,
Nor heeds how fast the prospect winds away.
How sweet the tuneful bells responsive peal!
As when, at opening morn, the fragrant breeze
Breathes on the trembling sense of wan disease,
So piercing to my heart their force I feel!
And hark! with lessening cadence now they fall,
And now along the white and level tide
They fling their melancholy music wide,
Bidding me many a tender thought recall
Of summer days, and those delightful years,
When by my native streams, in life's fair prime,
The mournful magic of their mingling chime
First wak'd my wondering childhood into tears;
But seeming now, when all those days are o'er,
The sounds of joy, once heard and heard no more.