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Go, let oblivion's curtain fall
Upon the stage of men,
Nor with thy rising beams recall
Life's tragedy again.
Its piteous pageants bring not back,
Nor waken flesh, upon the rack
Of pain anew to writhe;
Stretched in disease's shapes abhorred,
Or mown in battle by the sword,
Like grass beneath the scythe.
Even I am weary in yon skies
To watch thy fading fire;
Test of all sumless agonies,
Behold not me expire.
My lips that speak thy dirge of death,-
Their rounded gasp and gurgling breath
To see thou shalt not boast.
The eclipse of Nature spreads my pall,—
The majesty of Darkness shall
Receive my parting ghost!
This spirit shall return to Him
That gave its heavenly spark ;
Yet think not, Sun, it shall be dim
When thou thyself art dark!
No! it shall live again, and shine
In bliss unknown to beams of thine,
By Him recalled to breath,
Who captive led captivity,
Who robbed the grave of Victory,-
And took the sting from Death!
Go, Sun, while Mercy holds me up
On Nature's awful waste,
To drink this last and bitter cup
Of grief that man shall tasteGo, tell the night that hides thy face, Thou sawest the last of Adam's race,
On Earth's sepulchral clod,
The darkening universe defy
To quench his Immortality,
Or shake his trust in God!
THE VOICE OF SPRING.
COME, I come! ye have called me long,
I come o'er the mountains with light and song!
Ye may trace my step o'er the wakening earth,
By the winds which tell of the violet's birth,
By the primrose-stars in the shadowy grass,
By the green leaves opening as I pass.
I have breathed on the South, and the chestnut-flowers
By thousands have burst from the forest-bowers,
And the ancient graves, and the falling fanes,
Are veiled with wreaths on Italian plains.
-But it is not for me, in my hour of bloom,
To speak of the ruin or the tomb!
I have passed o'er the hills of the stormy North,
And the larch has hung all his tassels forth,
The fisher is out on the sunny sea,
And the rein-deer bounds through the pasture free,
And the pine has a fringe of softer green,
And the moss looks bright where my step has been.
I have sent through the wood-paths a gentle sigh,
And called out each voice of the deep blue sky,
From the night-bird's lay through the starry time,
In the groves of the soft Hesperian clime,
To the swan's wild note by the Iceland lakes,
When the dark fir-bough into verdure breaks.
From the streams and founts I have loosed the chain;
They are sweeping on to the silvery main,
They are flashing down from the mountain-brows,
They are flinging spray on the forest-boughs,
They are bursting fresh from their sparry caves,
And the earth resounds with the joy of waves.
Come forth, O ye children of gladness, come!
Where the violets lie may now be your home,
Ye of the rose-cheek and dew-bright eye,
And the bounding foot-step, to meet me fly,
With the lyre, and the wreath, and the joyous lay,
Come forth to the sunshine, I may not stay!
Away from the dwellings of care-worn men,
The waters are sparkling in wood and glen,
Away from the chamber and dusky hearth,
The young leaves are dancing in breezy mirth,
Their light stems thrill to the wild-wood strains,
And youth is abroad in my green domains.
But ye!-ye are changed since ye met me last;
A shade of earth has been round you cast!
There is that come over your brow and eye
Which speaks of a world where the flowers must die!
Ye smile!-but your smile hath a dimness yet-
Oh! what have ye looked on since last we met?
Ye are changed, ye are changed!—and I see not here
All whom I saw in the vanished year!
There were graceful heads, with their ringlets bright,
Which tossed in the breeze with a play of light;
There were eyes, in whose glistening laughter lay
No faint remembrance of dull decay.
There were steps, that flew o'er the cowslip's head,
As if for a banquet all earth were spread;
There were voices, that rung through the sapphire sky, And had not a sound of mortality!
Are they gone!-is their mirth from the green hills passed?
-Ye have looked on Death since ye met me last!
I know whence the shadow comes o'er ye now,
Ye have strewn the dust on the sunny brow!
Ye have given the lovely to earth's embrace,
She hath taken the fairest of beauty's race!
With their laughing eyes and their festal crown,
They are gone from amongst you in silence down.
They are gone from amongst you, the bright and fair,
Ye have lost the gleam of their shining hair!
-But I know of a world where there falls no blight,
I shall find them there, with their eyes of light!
Where Death 'midst the blooms of the morn may dwell,
I tarry no longer,-farewell, farewell!
The Summer is hastening, on soft winds borne,
Ye may press the grape, ye may bind the corn!
For me, I depart to a brighter shore,
Ye are marked by care, ye are mine no more. where the loved who have left you dwell, And the flowers are not Death's; fare
Friend after friend departs;
Who hath not lost a friend?
There is no union here of hearts,
That finds not here an end:
Were this frail world our only rest,
Living or dying, none were blest.
Beyond the flight of time,
Beyond this vale of death,
There surely is some blessed clime,
Where life is not a breath,
Nor life's affections transient fire,
Whose sparks fly upward to expire.
There is a world above,
Where parting is unknown;
A whole eternity of love,
Formed for the good alone;
And faith beholds the dying here
Translated to that happier sphere !
Thus star by star declines,
Till all are passed away,
As morning high and higher shines
To pure and perfect day;
Nor sink those stars in empty night,
-They hide themselves in heaven's own light.
YES! there are real mourners-I have seen
A fair, sad girl, mild, suffering, and serene;
Attention, through the day, her duties claimed,
And to be useful as resigned she aimed:
Neatly she dressed, nor vainly seemed to expect.
Pity for grief, or pardon for neglect;
But when her wearied parents sank to sleep,
She sought her place to meditate and weep:
Then to her mind was all the past displayed,
That faithful Memory brings to Sorrow's aid:
For then she thought on one regretted youth,
Her tender trust, and his unquestioned truth.
In every place she wandered, where they'd been,
And sadly-sacred held the parting scene;
Where last for sea he took his leave that place
With double interest would she nightly trace:
For long the courtship was, and he would say,
Each time he sailed-" This once, and then the day :"
Yet prudence tarried; but when last he went,
He drew from pitying love a full consent.
Happy he sailed, and great the care she took,
That he should softly sleep, and smartly look;
White was his better linen, and his check
Was made more trim than any on the deck;
And every comfort men at sea can know,
Was hers to buy, to make, and to bestow:
For he to Greenland sailed, and much she told,
How he should guard against the climate's cold;