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"When Venus, throned in clouds of rosy hue,
Flings from her golden urn the vesper dew,
And bids fond man her glimmering noon employ,
Sacred to love, and walks of tender joy;
A miider mood the goddess shall recall,
And soft as dew thy tones of music fall;
While Beauty's deeply-pictured smiles impart
A pang more dear than pleasure to the heart-
Warm as thy sighs shall flow the Lesbian strain,
And plead in Beauty's ear, nor plead in vain.
"Or wilt thou Orphean hymns more sacred deem,
And steep thy song in Mercy's mellow stream?
To pensive drops the radiant eye beguile—
For Beauty's tears are lovelier than her smile;-
On Nature's throbbing anguish pour relief?
And teach impassion'd souls the joy of grief?
"Yes; to thy tongue shall seraph words be given,
And power on earth to plead the cause of Heaven;
The proud, the cold untroubled heart of stone,
That never mused on sorrow but its own,
Unlocks a generous store at thy command,
Like Horeb's rocks beneath the prophet's hand. (6)
The living lumber of his kindred earth,
Charm'd into soul, receives a second birth,
Feels thy dread power another heart afford,
Whose passion-touch'd harmonious strings accord
True as the circling spheres to Nature's plan;
And man, the brother, lives the friend of man.
"Bright as the pillar rose at Heaven's command,
When Israel march'd along the desert land,
Blazed through the night on lonely wilds afar,
And told the path,-a never-setting star:
So, heavenly Genius, in thy course divine,
HOPE is thy star, her light is ever thine."
And weaves a song of melancholy joy
Sleep, image of thy father, sleep, my boy:
No lingering hour of sorrow shall be thine;
No sigh that rends thy father's heart and mine,
Bright as his manly sire the son shall be
In form and soul; but, ah! more blest than he!
Thy fame, thy worth, thy filial love, at last,
Shall soothe his aching heart for all the past-
With many a smile my solitude repay,
And chase the world's ungenerous scorn away.
Lo! at the couch where infant beauty sleeps,
Her silent watch the mournful mother keeps ;
She, while the lovely babe unconscious lies,
Smiles on her slumbering child with pensive eyes,
I lay my head beneath the willow-tree,
Wilt thou, sweet mourner! at my stone appear.
And soothe my parted spirit lingering near?
Oh, wilt thou come, at evening hour to shed
The tears of Memory o'er my narrow bed;
With aching temples on thy hand reclined,
Muse on the last farewell I leave behind,
Breathe a deep sigh to winds that murmur low,
And think on all my love, and all my woe?"
"And say, when summon'd from the world and thee
So speaks Affection, ere the infant eye
Can look regard, or brighten in reply;
But when the cherub lip hath learnt to claim
A mother's ear by that endearing name;
Soon as the playful innocent can prove
A tear of pity, or a smile of love,
Or cons his murmuring task beneath her care,
Or lisps with holy look his evening prayer,
Or gazing, mutely pensive, sits to hear
The mournful ballad warbled in his ear;
How fondly looks admiring HoPE the while
At every artless tear, and every smile!
How glows the joyous parent to descry
A guileless bosom, true to sympathy!
Propitious Power! when rankling cares annoy
The sacred home of Hymenean joy;
When doom'd to Poverty's sequester'd dell,
The wedded pair of love and virtue dwell,
Unpitied by the world, unknown to fame,
Their woes, their wishes, and their hearts the
Oh, there, prophetic HOPE! thy smile bestow,
And chase the pangs that worth should never know-
There, as the parent deals his scanty store
To friendless babes, and weeps to give no more,
Tell, that his manly race shall yet assuage
Their father's wrongs, and shield his latter age.
What though for him no Hybla sweets distil,
Nor bloomy vines wave purple on the hill;
Tell, that when silent years have pass'd away,
That when his eye grows dim, his tresses grey,
These busy hands a lovelier cot shall build,
And deck with fairer flowers his little field,
And call from Heaven propitious dews to breathe
Arcadian beauty on the barren heath;
Tell, that while Love's spontaneous smile endears
The days of peace, the sabbath of his years,
Health shall prolong to many a festive hour
The social pleasures of his humble bower.
Where is the troubled heart, consign'd to share
Tumultuous toils, or solitary care,
Unblest by visionary thoughts that stray
To count the joys of Fortune's better day!
Lo, nature, life, and liberty relume
long-lost friend, or hapless child restored,
The dim-eyed tenant of the dungeon gloom,
Warm from his heart the tears of rapture flow,
Smiles at his blazing hearth and social board;
And virtue triumphs o'er remember'd woe.
Chide not his peace, proud Reason! nor destroy
The shadowy forms of uncreated joy,
That urge the lingering tide of life, and pour
Spontaneous slumber on his midnight hour.
Hark! the wild maniac sings, to chide the gale
That wafts so slow her lover's distant sail :
She, sad spectatress, on the wintry shore
Watch'd the rude surge his shroudless corse that bore,
Knew the pale form, and, shrieking in amaze,
Clasp'd her cold hands, and fix'd her maddening gaze:
Poor widow'd wretch! 't was there she wept in vain,
Till Memory fled her agonizing brain;—
But Mercy gave, to charm the sense of woe,
Ideal peace, that truth could ne'er bestow;
Warm on her heart the joys of Fancy beam,
And aimless HOPE delights her darkest dream.
Oft when yon moon has climb'd the midnight sky, And the lone sea-bird wakes its wildest cry,
Piled on the steep, her blazing fagots burn
To hail the bark that never can return;
And still she waits, but scarce forbears to weep
That constant love can linger on the deep.
And, mark the wretch, whose wanderings never knew
The world's regard, that soothes, though half untrue,
Whose erring heart the lash of sorrow bore,
But found not pity when it err'd no more.
Yon friendless man, at whose dejected eye
Th' unfeeling proud one looks-and passes by,
Condemn'd on Penury's barren path to roam,
Scorn'd by the world, and left without a home-
Even he, at evening, should he chance to stray
Down by the hamlet's hawthorn-scented way,
Where, round the cot's romantic glade, are seen
The blossom'd bean-field, and the sloping green,
Leans o'er its humble gate, and thinks the while-Firm-paced and slow, a horrid front they form,
He said, and on the rampart-heights array'd
His trusty warriors, few, but undismay'd;
Oh! that for me some home like this would smile,
Some hamlet shade, to yield my sickly form
Health in the breeze, and shelter in the storm!
There should my hand no stinted boon assign
To wretched hearts with sorrow such as mine!-
That generous wish can soothe unpitied care,
And HOPE half mingles with the poor man's prayer.
Still as the breeze, but dreadful as the storm;
Low murmuring sounds along their banners fly.
Revenge, or death,—the watch-word and reply;
Then peal'd the notes, omnipotent to charm,
And the loud tocsin toll'd their last alarm!—
HOPE! when I mourn, with sympathizing mind,
The wrongs of fate, the woes of human kind,
Thy blissful omens bid my spirit see
The boundless fields of rapture yet to be;
I watch the wheels of Nature's mazy plan,
And learn the future by the past of man.
Come, bright Improvement! on the car of Time,
And rule the spacious world from clime to clime;
Thy handmaid arts shall every wild explore,
Trace every wave, and culture every shore.
On Erie's banks, where tigers steal along,
And the dread Indian chants a dismal song,
Where human fiends on midnight errands walk,
And bathe in brains the murderous tomahawk;
There shall the flocks on thymy pasture stray,
And shepherds dance at Summer's opening day;
Each wandering genius of the lonely glen
Shall start to view the glittering haunts of men,
And silence watch, on woodland heights around,
The village curfew as it tolls profound.
In Lybian groves, where damned rites are done,
That bathe the rocks in blood, and veil the sun,
Truth shall arrest the murd'rous arm profane :
Wild Obi flies (7)—the veil is rent in twain.
Where barbarous hordes on Scythian mountains
Truth, Mercy, Freedom, yet shall find a home;
Where'er degraded Nature bleeds and pines,
From Guinea's coast to Sibir's dreary mines, (8)
Truth shall pervade the unfathom'd darkness there,
And light the dreadful features of despair.-
Hark! the stern captive spurns his heavy load,
And asks the image back that Heaven bestow'd!
Fierce in his eye the fire of valor burns,
And, as the slave departs, the man returns.
When leagued Oppression pour'd to Northern wars
Her whisker'd pandoors and her fierce hussars,
Waved her dread standard to the breeze of morn,
Peal'd her loud drum, and twang'd her trumpet horn;
Tumultuous horror brooded o'er her van,
Presaging wrath to Poland-and to man! (9)
Oh! sacred Truth! thy triumph ceased awhile, And HOPE, thy sister, ceased with thee to smile,
Warsaw's last champion from her height survey'd,
Wide o'er the fields, a waste of ruin laid,—
Oh! Heaven! he cried, my bleeding country save!-
Is there no hand on high to shield the brave?
Yet, though destruction sweep these lovely plains,
Rise, fellow-men! our country yet remains!
By that dread name, we wave the sword on high!
And swear for her to live!with her to die!
From rank to rank your volley'd thunder flew :—
In vain, alas! in vain, ye gallant few!
Oh, bloodiest picture in the book of Time,
Sarmatia fell, unwept, without a crime;
Found not a generous friend, a pitying foe,
Strength in her arms, nor mercy in her woe!
Dropp'd from her nerveless grasp the shatter'd spear.
Closed her bright eye, and curb'd her high career;—
HOPE, for a season, bade the world farewell,
And Freedom shriek'd-as Kosciusko fell!
The sun went down, nor ceased the carnage there
Tumultuous murder shook the midnight air-
On Prague's proud arch the fires of ruin glow,
His blood-dyed waters murmuring far below;
The storm prevails, the rampart yields away,
Bursts the wild cry of horror and dismay!
Hark! as the smouldering piles with thunder fall,
A thousand shrieks for hopeless mercy call!
Earth shook-red meteors flash'd along the sky,
And conscious Nature shudder'd at the cry!
Oh! righteous Heaven! ere Freedom found a grave,
Why slept the sword, omnipotent to save?
Where was thine arm, O vengeance! where thy rod
That smote the foes of Zion and of God;
That crush'd proud Ammon, when his iron car
Was yoked in wrath, and thunder'd from afar?
Where was the storm that slumber'd till the host
Of blood-stain'd Pharaoh left their trembling coast;
Then bade the deep and wild commotion flow,
And heaved an ocean on their march below?
Departed spirits of the mighty dead!
Ye that at Marathon and Leuctra bled!
Friends of the world! restore your swords to man,
Fight in his sacred cause, and lead the van!
Yet for Sarmatia's tears of blood atone,
And make her arm puissant as your own!
Oh! once again to Freedom's cause return
The patriot Tell-the Bruce of Bannockburn!
The sword of Brutus, and the Theban lyre!
Wrapt in historic ardor, who adore
Each classic haunt, and well-remember'd shore,
Where Valor tuned, amid her chosen throng,
The Thracian trumpet and the Spartan song :
Or, wandering thence, behold the later charms
Of England's glory, and Helvetia's arms!
See Roman fire in Hampden's bosom swell,
And fate and freedom in the shaft of Tell!
Say, ye fond zealots to the worth of yore,
Hath Valor left the world-to live no more?
No more shall Brutus bid a tyrant die,
And sternly smile with vengeance in his eye?
Hampden no more, when suffering Freedom calls,
Encounter Fate, and triumph as he falls;
Nor Tell disclose, through peril and alarm,
The might that slumbers in a peasant's arm?
Yes! in that generous cause, for ever strong,
The patriot's virtue and the poet's song,
Still, as the tide of ages rolls away,
Shall charm the world, unconscious of decay!
Or, warm with Fancy's energy, to glow,
And rival all but Shakspeare's name below!
And say, supernal Powers! who deeply scan
Heaven's dark decrees, unfathom'd yet by man,
When shall the world call down, to cleanse her shame,
That embryo spirit, yet without a name,-
That friend of Nature, whose avenging hands
Shall burst the Lybian's adamantine bands?
Who, sternly marking on his native soil
The blood, the tears, the anguish and the toil,
Shall bid each righteous heart exult, to see
Peace to the slave, and vengeance on the free!
Yet, yet, degraded men! th' expected day
That breaks your bitter cup, is far away;
Trade, wealth, and fashion, ask you still to bleed,
And holy men give Scripture for the deed;
Scourged, and debased, no Briton stoops to save
A wretch, a coward; yes, because a slave!
Eternal Nature! when thy giant hand
Had heaved the floods, and fix'd the trembling land,
When life sprung starting at thy plastic call,
Endless her forms, and man the lord of all!
Say, was that lordly form inspired by thee,
To wear eternal chains and bow the knee?
Was man ordain'd the slave of man to toil,
Yoked with the brutes, and fetter'd to the soil;
Weigh'd in a tyrant's balance with his gold?
No!-Nature stamp'd us in a heavenly mould!
She bade no wretch his thankless labor urge,
Nor, trembling, take the pittance and the scourge!
No homeless Lybian, on the stormy deep,
To call upon his country's name, and weep!
Lo! once in triumph, on his boundless plain,
The quiver'd chief of Congo loved to reign;
With fires proportion'd to his native sky,
Strength in his arm, and lightning in his eye;
Scour'd with wild feet his sun-illumined zone,
The spear, the lion, and the woods, his own!
Or led the combat, bold without a plan,
An artless savage, but a fearless man!
The plunderer came!-alas! no glory smiles
For Congo's chief on yonder Indian isles;
For ever fall'n! no son of nature now,
With freedom charter'd on his manly brow!
Faint, bleeding, bound, he weeps the night away,
And when the sea-wind wafts the dewless day,
Starts, with a bursting heart, for ever more
To curse the sun that lights their guilty shore!
The shrill horn blew; (10) at that alarum knell
His guardian angel took a last farewell!
That funeral dirge to darkness hath resign'd
The fiery grandeur of a generous mind!
Poor fetter'd man! I hear thee whispering low
Unhallow'd vows to Guilt, the child of Woe!
Friendless thy heart; and canst thou harbor there
Yes! there are hearts, prophetic HOPE may trust, A wish but death-a passion but despair?
That slumber yet in uncreated dust,
Ordain'd to fire th' adoring sons of earth
With every charm of wisdom and of worth;
Ordain'd to light, with intellectual day,
The mazy wheels of Nature as they play
The widow'd Indian, when her lord expires,
Mounts the dread pile, and braves the funeral fires!
So falls the heart at Thraldom's bitter sigh!
So Virtue dies, the sponse of Liberty!
But not to Lybia's barren climes alone, To Chili, or the wild Siberian zone, Belong the wretched heart and haggard eye, Degraded worth, and poor misfortune's sigh!Ye orient realms, where Ganges' waters run! Prolific fields! dominions of the sun!
How long your tribes have trembled and obey'd!
How long was Timour's iron sceptre sway'd, (11)
Whose marshall'd hosts, the lions of the plain,
From Scythia's northern mountains to the main,
Raged o'er your plunder'd shrines and altars bare,
With blazing torch and gory cimeter,-
Stunn'd with the cries of death each gentle gale,
And bathed in blood the verdure of the vale!
Yet could no pangs the immortal spirit tame,
When Brama's children perish'd for his name;
The martyr smiled beneath avenging power,
And braved the tyrant in his torturing hour!
When Europe sought your subject realms to gain, And stretch'd her giant sceptre o'er the main, Taught her proud barks the winding way to shape, And braved the stormy spirit of the Cape; (12) Children of Brama! then was Mercy nigh To wash the stain of blood's eternal dye? Did Peace descend, to triumph and to save, When freeborn Britons cross'd the Indian wave? Ah, no-to more than Rome's ambition true, The nurse of Freedom gave it not to you! She the bold route of Europe's guilt began, And, in the march of nations, led the van!
Rich in the gems of India's gaudy zone, And plunder piled from kingdoms not their own, Degenerate trade! thy minions could despise The heart-born anguish of a thousand cries; Could lock, with impious hands, their teeming store, While famish'd nations died along the shore: (13) Could mock the groans of fellow-men, and bear The curse of kingdoms peopled with despair; Could stamp disgrace on man's polluted name, And barter, with their gold, eternal shame!
But hark! as bow'd to earth the Bramin kneels, From heavenly climes propitious thunder peals; Of India's fate her guardian spirits tell, Prophetic murmurs breathing on the shell, And solemn sounds, that awe the list'ning mind, Roll on the azure paths of every wind.
Earth, and her trembling isles in Ocean's bed,
Are shook; and Nature rocks beneath his tread!
"To pour redress on India's injured realm,
The oppressor to dethrone, the proud to whelm;
To chase destruction from her plunder'd shore
With arts and arms that triumph'd once before,
The tenth Avatar comes! at Heaven's command
Shall Seriswattee wave her hallow'd wand!
And Camdeo bright, and Ganesa sublime, (15)
Shall bless with joy their own propitious clime!
Come, Heavenly Powers! primeval peace restore!
Love-Mercy!-Wisdom!-rule for evermore!"
"Foes of mankind! (her guardian spirits say,) Revolving ages bring the bitter day, When Heaven's unerring arm shall fall on you, And blood for blood these Indian plains bedew; Nine times have Brama's wheels of lightning hurl'd His awful presence o'er the alarmed world; (14) Nine times hath Guilt, through all his giant frame, Convulsive trembled, as the Mighty came; Nine times hath suffering Mercy spared in vainBut Heaven shall burst her starry gates again! He comes! dread Brama shakes the sunless sky With murmuring wrath, and thunders from on high, Heaven's fiery horse, beneath his warrior form, Paws the light clouds, and gallops on the storm! Wide waves his flickering sword; his bright arms glow Like summer suns, and light the world below!
APOSTROPHE to the power of Love-its intimate connexion with generous and social sensibility— allusion to that beautiful passage in the beginning of the book of Genesis, which represents the happiness of Paradise itself incomplete, till Love was superadded to its other blessings-the dreams of future felicity which a lively imagination is apt to cherish, when Hope is animated by refined attachment-this disposition to combine, in one imaginary scene of residence, all that is pleasing in our estimate of hap piness, compared to the skill of the great artist who personified perfect beauty, in the picture of Venus, by an assemblage of the most beautiful features he could find-a summer and winter evening described, as they may be supposed to arise in the mind of one who wishes, with enthusiasm, for the union of friendship and retirement.
Hope and Imagination inseparable agents-even in those contemplative moments when our imagina tion wanders beyond the boundaries of this world, our minds are not unattended with an impression that we shall some day have a wider and distinct prospect of the universe, instead of the partial glimpse we now enjoy.
The last and most sublime influence of Hope is the concluding topic of the poem-the predominance of a belief in a future state over the terrors attendant on dissolution-the baneful influence of that sceptical philosophy which bars us from such comforts allusion to the fate of a suicide-episode of Conrad and Ellinore-conclusion.
IN joyous youth, what soul hath never known Thought, feeling, taste, harmonious to its own? Who hath not paused while Beauty's pensive eye Ask'd from his heart the homage of a sigh? who hath not own'd, with rapture-smitten frame, The power of grace, the magic of a name?
There be, perhaps, who barren hearts avow, Cold as the rocks on Torneo's hoary brow! There be, whose loveless wisdom never fail'd, In self-adoring pride securely mail'd:But, triumph not, ye peace-enamour'd few! Fire, Nature, Genius, never dwelt with you! For you no fancy consecrates the scene Where rapture utter'd vows, and wept between; "T is yours, unmoved, to sever and to meet; No pledge is sacred, and no home is sweet!
Who that would ask a heart to dullness wed,
The waveless calm, the slumber of the dead?
No; the wild bliss of Nature needs alloy,
And fear and sorrow fan the fire of joy!
And say, without our hopes, without our fears,
Without the home that plighted love endears,
Without the smile from partial beauty won,
Oh! what were man?-a world without a sun.
Till Hymen brought his love-delighted hour,
There dwelt no joy in Eden's rosy bower!
In vain the viewless seraph lingering there,
At starry midnight charm'd the silent air;
In vain the wild-bird caroll'd on the steep.
To hail the sun, slow wheeling from the deep;
In vain, to soothe the solitary shade,
Aërial notes in mingling measure play'd;
The summer wind that shook the spangled tree,
The whispering wave, the murmur of the bee ;-
Still slowly pass'd the melancholy day,
And still the stranger wist not where to stray.
The world was sad!-the garden was a wild;
And man, the hermit, sigh'd-till woman smiled!
So thy fair hand, enamour'd Fancy! gleans
The treasured pictures of a thousand scenes;
Thy pencil traces on the lover's thought
Some cottage-home, from towns and toil remote,
Where love and lore may claim alternate hours,
With Peace embosom'd in Idalian bowers!
Remote from busy Life's bewilder'd way,
O'er all his heart shall Taste and Beauty sway!
Free on the sunny slope, or winding shore,
With hermit steps to wander and adore!
There shall he love, when genial morn appears,
Like pensive Beauty smiling in her tears,
To watch the brightening roses of the sky,
And muse on Nature with a Poet's eye!-
And when the sun's last splendor lights the deep,
The woods and waves, and murmuring winds asleep,
When fairy harps th' Hesperian planet hail,
And the lone cuckoo sighs along the vale,
True, the sad power to generous hearts may bring His path shall be where streamy mountains swell
Delirious anguish on his fiery wing;
Barr'd from delight by fate's untimely hand,
By wealthless lot, or pitiless command;
Or doom'd to gaze on beauties that adorn
The smile of triumph, or the frown of scorn;
While Memory watches o'er the sad review,
Of joys that faded like the morning dew;
Peace may depart-and life and nature seem
A barren path, a wildness, and a dream!
Their shadowy grandeur o'er the narrow dell,
Where mouldering piles and forests intervene,
Mingling with darker tints the living green;
No circling hills his ravish'd eye to bound,
Heaven, Earth, and Ocean, blazing all around.
And as he sojourn'd on the Ægean isles,
Woo'd all their love, and treasured all their smiles;
Then glow'd the tints, pure, precious, and refined,
And mortal charms seem'd heavenly, when combined'
Love on the picture smiled! Expression pour'd
Her mingling spirit there-and Greece adored!
When first the Rhodian's mimic art array'd
The queen of Beauty in her Cyprian shade,
The happy master mingled on his piece
Each look that charm'd him in the fair of Greece.
To faultless Nature true, he stole a grace
From every finer form and sweeter face;
But can the noble mind for ever brood,
The willing victim of a weary mood,
On heartless cares that squander life away,
And cloud young Genius brightening into day?—
Shame to the coward thought that e'er betray'd
The noon of manhood to a myrtle shade!-(16)
If HOPE's creative spirit cannot raise
One trophy sacred to thy future days,
Scorn the dull crowd that haunt the gloomy shrine, With mental light, the melancholy day!
And, when its short and sullen noon is o'er,
How blest he names, in Love's familiar tone,
The kind, fair friend, by Nature mark'd his own;
Of hopeless love to murmur and repine!
But, should a sigh of milder mood express
Thy heart-warm wishes, true to happiness,
Should Heaven's fair harbinger delight to pour
Her blissful visions on thy pensive hour,
No tear to blot thy memory's pictured page,
No fears but such as fancy can assuage:
Though thy wild heart some hapless hour may miss And, in the waveless mirror of his mind,
The peaceful tenor of unvaried bliss
(For love pursues an ever-devious race,
True to the winding lineaments of grace);
Yet still may HOPE her talisman employ
To snatch from Heaven anticipated joy,
And all her kindred energies impart
That burn the brightest in the purest heart.
The moon is up-the watch-tower dimly burns-
And down the vale his sober step returns;
But pauses oft, as winding rocks convey
The still sweet fall of music far away;
And oft he lingers from his home awhile
To watch the dying notes!—and start, and smile!
Let Winter come! let polar spirits sweep
The darkening world, and tempest-troubled deep!
Though boundless snows the wither'd heath deform,
And the dim sun scarce wanders through the storm
Yet shall the smile of social love repay,
The ice-chain'd waters slumbering on the shore,
How bright the fagots in his little hall
Blaze on the hearth, and warm the pictured wall!
Views the fleet years of pleasure left behind,
Since Anna's empire o'er his heart began!
Since first he call'd her his before the holy man!
Trim the gay taper in his rustic dome,
And light the wintry paradise of home;
And let the half-uncurtain'd window hail
Some way-worn man benighted in the vale!
Now, while the moaning night-wind rages high,
As sweep the shot-stars down the troubled sky,
While fiery hosts in Heaven's wide circle play,
And bathe in lurid light the milky-way,
Safe from the storm, the meteor, and the shower,
Some pleasing page shall charm the solemn hour-