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Unseen, and mark the tints that o'er thy bed
Hang lovely; oft to musing Fancy's eye
Presenting 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,
And the blue wave comes rippling to the shore.
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.
ON THE RHINE.
"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.
WRITTEN AT OSTEND,
How sweet the tuneful bells responsive peal!
As when, at opening inorn, 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.
O TIME, who knows't a lenient hand to lay,
Softest on sorrow's wounds, and slowly thence
(Lulling to sad repose the weary sense)
The faint pang stealest unperceiv'd away:
On thee I rest my only hopes at last;
And think when thou hast dried the bitter tear,
That flows in vain o'er all my soul held dear,
I may look back on many a sorrow past,
And greet life's peaceful evening with a smile.
As some lone bird, at day's departing hour,
Sings in the sunshine of the transient show'r,
Forgetful, though its wings be wet the while.
But ah! what ills must that poor heart endure,
Who hopes from thee, and thee alone a cure.
ON A DISTANT VIEW OF ENGLAND.
Aн, from my eyes the tears unbidden start,
Albion! as now thy cliffs (that white appear
Far o'er the wave, and their proud summits rear
To meet the beains of morn) my beating heart
With eager hope and filial transport hails!
Scenes of my youth, reviving gales ye bring,
As when erewhile the tuneful morn of spring
Joyous awoke amid your blooming vales,
And fill'd with fragrance every painted plain:
Fled are those hours and all the joys they gave:
Yet still I sigh, and count each rising wave
That bears me nearer to your haunts again:
If haply, mid those woods and vales so fair,
Stranger to peace, I yet may meet her there.
FALLEN pile! I ask not what has been thy fate,
But when the weak winds wafted from the main,
Through each lone arch, like spirits that complain,
Come mourning to my ear, I meditate
On this world's passing pageant, and on those
Who once like thee majestic and sublime
Have stood; till bow'd beneath the hand of time,
Or hard mishap, at their sad evening's close,
Their bold and beauteous port has sunk forlorn!
Yet wearing still a charm, that age and cares
Could ne'er subdue, decking the silver hairs
Of sorrow, as with short-liv'd gleam the morn
Illumines whilst it weeps, the refted tower
That lifts its forehead gray, and smiles amidst the shower.
STANZAS ON THE DEATH OF A CHILD.
THOUGH parental affection lament thee,
And anguish, which loves to recall
Thy image, may oft represent thee
As the fairest and loveliest of all:
Although I must feel for such sorrow,
There is so much bliss in thy lot,
That pain from thee pleasure may borrow
And joy could not wish thee forgot.
When childhood, by sin yet untainted,
Gives up life, which it scarcely hath gain'd And, ere with affliction acquainted,
Hath its end and its object attain'd;
There is so much of sweet consolation,
To soften the sorrow we feel;
While we mourn the severe dispensation,
We bow to the hand which can heal.
Death comes not to such in his terrors,
His pains are half pangless to them; Crimes have not succeeded to errors,
Nor conscience been roused to condemn. The prospect before and behind them
Awakes not one heart-stinging sigh; The season of suffering assign'd them
May be bitter, but soon is gone by.
There is much to relieve, and restore us
To peace, when the child which we lov'd Hath ascended to glory before us,
Not unblest, though in mercy unprov'd! Fond fancy gives birth to the feeling
That part of ourselves is at rest; Hope, humble, but holy and healing,
Sheds its balm in the yet bleeding breast.
Who knows but the beings who bound us
With tenderest ties to this world,
Though unseen, may be hovering around us,
With their cherub-like pinions unfurl'd?
Although not to our senses permitted
To be visible, still they are near;
And the feelings they prompt are most fitted
To dry up the sorrowing tear.
They tell us that change of existence
Has not sever'd, but strengthen'd each tie; And, that though we may think them at distance, Yet still they are spiritually nigh. There yet is an unbroken union,
Though mortality's curtain may fall; And souls may keep up their communion, Through the God of the spirits of all!
TO THE EVENING PRIMROSE.
FAIR flower, that shunn'st the glare of day,
Yet lov'st to open, meekly bold,
To evening's hues of sober gray
Thy cup of paly gold;—
Be thine the offering owing long
To thee, and to this pensive hour,
Of one brief tributary song,
Though transient as thy flower.
I love to watch at silent eve,
Thy scatter'd blossoms' lonely light,
And have my inmost heart receive
The influence of that sight.
I love at such an hour to mark
Their beauty greet the night-breeze chill, And shine, mid shadows gathering dark, The garden's glory still.
For such, 'tis sweet to think the while,
When cares and griefs the breast invade,
Is friendship's animating smile
In sorrow's dark'ning shade.
Thus it bursts forth, like thy pale cup
Glist'ning amid its dewy tears,
And bears the sinking spirit up
Amid its chilling fears.
But still more animating far,
If meek Religion's eye may trace, Even in thy glimm'ring earth-born star, The holier hope of Grace.
The hope that as thy beauteous bloom
Expands to glad the close of day,
So through the shadows of the tomb
May break forth Mercy's ray.