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Yielded with coy submission, modest pride,
And sweet, reluctant, amorous delay.
So pass'd they naked on, nor shunn'd the sight
Of God or angel, for they thought no ill :
So hand in hand they pass'd, the loveliest pair
That ever since in love's embraces met.
THOMAS MILLER, by calling a working basket-maker, but a true poet; uneducated, but not unlearned; a self-taught, self-dependant man, is the author of this fine composition, which appears in Friendship's Offering for the year 1836.
How many days, with mute adieu,
Have gone down yon untrodden sky?
And still its looks as clear and blue
As when it first was hung on high.
The rolling sun, the frowning cloud
That drew the lightning in its rear,
The thunder, tramping deep and loud,
Have left no footmark there.
The village bells, with silver chime,
Come soften'd by the distant shore;
Though I have heard them many a time,
They never rung so sweet before.
A silence rests upon the hill,
A listening awe pervades the air:
The very flowers are shut, and still,
And bow'd as if in prayer.
And in this hush'd and breathless close,
O'er earth, and air, and sky,
That still low voice in silence goes,
Which speaks alone, great God! of Thee.
The whispering leaves, the far-off brook,
The linnet's warble fainter grown,
The hive-bound bee, the lonely rook,-
All these their Maker own.
Now shine the starry hosts of light,
Gazing on earth with golden eyes;
Bright guardians of the blue-brow'd night!
What are ye in your native skies?
I know not! neither can I know,
Nor on what leader ye attend,
Nor whence ye came, nor whither go,
Nor what your aim or end.
I know they must be holy things
That from a roof so sacred shine,
Where sounds the beat of angel-wings,
And footsteps echo all Divine.
Their mysteries I never sought,
Nor hearken'd to what Science tells,
For oh! in childhood I was taught
That God amidst them dwells.
The darkening woods, the fading trees,
The grasshopper's last feeble sound,
The flowers just waken'd by the breeze,
All leave the stillness more profound.
The twilight takes a deeper shade,
The dusky pathways blacker grow,
And silence reigns in glen and glade,—
All, all is mute below.
And other eves as sweet as this
Will close upon as calm a day,
And, sinking down the deep abyss,
Will, like the last, be swept away;
Until eternity is gain'd,
That boundless sea without a shore,
That without time for ever reign'd,
And will when time's no more.
Now nature sinks in soft repose,
A living semblance of the grave; The dew steals noiseless on the rose,
The boughs have almost ceased to wave ;
The silent sky, the sleeping earth,
Tree, mountain, stream, the humble sod, All tell from whom they had their birth, "Behold a God!"
THOMAS BUCHANAN READ, a young American poet of great promise, is the author of this charming bit of landscape.
BEFORE the stout harvesters falleth the grain,
As when the strong storm-wind is reaping the plain ;
And loiters the boy in the briery lane;
But yonder aslant comes the silvery rain,
Like a long line of spears brightly burnished and tall.
Adown the white highway, like cavalry fleet,
It dashes the dust with its numberless feet.
Like a murmurless school, in their leafy retreat,
The wild birds sit listening the drops round them beat;
And the boy crouches close to the blackberry wall.
The swallows alone take the storm on their wing, And, taunting the tree-sheltered labourers, sing, Like pebbles the rain breaks the face of the spring, While a bubble darts up from each widening ring; And the boy, in dismay, hears the loud shower fall.
But soon are the harvesters tossing the sheaves; The robin darts out from his bower of leaves; The wren peereth forth from the moss-covered eaves; And the rain-spatter'd urchin now gladly perceives That the beautiful bow bendeth over them all.
This is by COLERIDGE.
THOU gentle look, that didst my
Why hast thou left me?
Revisit my sad heart, auspicious smile!
As falls on closing flowers the lunar beam!
What time in sickly mood, at parting day
I lay me down and think of happier years;
Of joys that glimmer'd in Hope's twilight ray,
Then left me, darkling in a vale of tears.
Still in some fond dream
O pleasant days of Hope-for ever flown!
Could I recall you; but that thought is vain.
Availeth not persuasion's sweetest tone,
To lure the fleet-wing'd travellers back again;
Yet fair, though faint, their images shall gleam,
Like a bright rainbow on an evening stream.
HANS CHRISTIAN ANDERSEN usually writes poems in prose. But he has written also a few in verse, and these are characterised by the same beautiful simplicity as are his fables and tales. One of them has been thus translated by MARY HOWITT who, we believe, first introduced his works to popularity in England by clothing them in an English dress.
MOTHER, I'm tired, and I would fain be sleeping;
Let me repose upon thy bosom sleek;
But promise me that thou wilt leave off weeping,
Because thy tears fall hot upon my cheek.
Here it is cold; the tempest raveth madly;
But in my dreams all is so wondrous bright;
I see the Angel-children smiling gladly,
When from my weary eyes I shut out light.
“Mother, one stands beside me now! and-listen !—
Dost thou not hear the music's sweet accord?
See how his white wings beautifully glisten!
Surely those wings were given him by our Lord.
Green, gold and red are floating all around me,
They are the flowers the Angel scattereth.
Shall I have also wings whilst life hast bound me,
Or, mother, are they given alone in death?
"Why dost thou clasp me as if I were going?
Why dost thou press thy cheek thus unto mine?
Thy cheek is hot, and yet thy tears are flowing:
I will, dear mother, will be always thine!
Do not sigh thus-it marreth my reposing:
And if thou weep, then I must weep with thee!
Oh, I am tired—my weary eyes are closing;
-Look, Mother, look! the Angel kisseth me!"
A beautiful passage in LONGFELLOW's Golden Legend.
SLOWLY, slowly up the wall
Steals the sunshine, steals the shade,
Evening damps begin to fall,
Evening shadows are display'd.
Round me, o'er me, everywhere
All the sky is grand with clouds,
And athwart the evening air
Wheel the swallows home in crowds.
Shafts of sunshine from the west
Paint the dusky windows red;
Darker shadows, deeper rest,
Underneath, and overhead.
Darker, darker, and more wan
In my breast the shadows fall;
Upward steals the life of man,
As the sunshine from the wall.
From the wall into the sky,
From the roof along the spire;
Ah, the souls of those that die
Are but sunbeams lifted higher.
FLOWERS IN A ROOM OF SICKNESS.
Mrs. HEMANS, the most meditative of our poetesses, is the author of these exquisite thoughts.
BEAR them not from grassy dells,
Where wild bees have honey-cells;
Not from where sweet water-sounds
Thrill the greenwood to its bounds;
Not to waste their scented breath
On the silent room of Death!
Kindred to the breeze they are,
And the glow-worm's emerald star,
And the bird whose song
And the many-whispering tree:
Oh! too deep a love, and vain,
They would win to earth again!