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Than gratifies a happy soul,

If thus at times the suitor stole
A lock of her bright hair.

"I have lived round the year: I saw
The summer loveliness withdraw,
The winter blank succeed;

The heart that gleans as it should glean,
Will know what nature's warnings mean,
And listen and take heed."

We think the concluding stanza peculiarly happy, in suggesting, rather than expressing, the thoughts which are meant to be produced on the reader's mind. The poem entitled "The Gipsy Beggar," (p. 249,) strikes us as

a nearly perfect imitation of a somewhat different style, with some of those harsh touches which are characteristic of Wordsworth. The Beggar is thus described :—

"His was an ancient Roman's face,
So statue-like in shape, and yet
So viperous in eye, the grace
Of that calm outline keen gave place

To its continual fret."

He states that he is alone in the world, having neither wife nor children; his eye, meanwhile, giving sundry suspicious glances-"ten separate darts,"

"Upon an imp, that wildly broke
From out a hovel door.

"I looked upon the boy and him,
'Twas clear to me they were akin :

Only the younger was less grim
To see, his cheek more dewy-dim,
And of a finer skin.

"But in the lips and lofty brows

'Twas evident that they were one,

And in the eye, its sudden close

And quick expansion; now, who knows
But they are sire and son ?"

Mr. Burbidge, however, thinks it impossible that the gipsy can be guilty of so deliberate a falsehood, and is upon the point of pulling out his purse, when

"The imp went dancing down the lane,

And never saw us standing there,

When suddenly he fell; amain

A horrid cry-a cry of pain
Rang shrilly on the air!"

The beggar upon this flies with all speed to lift up the fallen "imp"

"Three leaps had borne the hasty man
To where the urchin lay."

By this it is pretty evident that they are "sire and son" after all; and as soon as the father has succeeded in appeasing the urchin's outcries, (who,

it appears, is more frightened than hurt), he returns to the wondering poet, and with unblushing effrontery confesses to having five more.

"Then up to me he saw me smile-
He led the boy so fair and young;
Five more I have, sir'-I, meanwhile,
For the heart's faith, forgave the guile

That was but of the tongue."

This subject, we think, is handled very much as Wordsworth would have handled it, though few, perhaps, would think the incident worth describing.

The extracts we have hitherto given will not convey an idea of the remarkable power of language and rich

ness of expression exhibited in some of these poems, combined with a fine perception of metrical harmony; qualities of great promise in a young writer. The following stanzas are from a poem describing a Vision of the Poets, (p. 146):

-"a mystic harp, twined round
With delicate flowers, no growth of common earth,
Stood next before me. Silence most profound
Held it at first; then fitfully gushed forth
Mysterious echoes of melodious mirth;

None knew their wherefore save himself who gave
With his wild hand the wondrous music birth,
An ancient man, to whose wild glances clave
Light cheer, like grasses green gladdening a secret grave.

"Thus saw I Coleridge. Then again a change:
A goodly pile I saw, upbuilded high
Into a stormy heaven; in many a range
Arch above arch ran up into the sky,
A mound of building; terraced gorgeously
Were its inclining sides, and tree and flower

Varied its face, as oft you may espy

Upon great Indian palaces: each bower

Lived, but the frame was clay, and shrank with every shower.

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The beautiful and 'well-known Oriental image of Love is painted in the following graceful lines (p. 13):

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We have here a description which breathes the very freshness of a Summer morning (p. 17) :—

"'Tis morn--the morn; at dawn of day

The Italian sky, a sea of mist,
Of curling mist and vapours grey,
Above the earth in silence lay;
Then softly, slowly, ray by ray,
The sun those vapours kissed,-
Kissed into gold and rose-tints gay
And purpling amethyst.

And then the wind came up the south,
And on its way with balmy mouth
Breathed on the flowers, and every bud
Gave sweetest answer as it could;
Faint odours some, but full and free
The fragrance of the orange tree."

The poem called Muemeion bears the appearance of hasty writing; and Mr. Burbidge would have done well to have submitted it before publication to the hand of some unsparing pruner. It is a rambling and wearisome composition, consisting of few materials, but those few worked up into every possible shape, and dressed in every conceivable variety of metaphor. It is, in fact, wholly made up of descriptions of the night (with frequent and extravagant addresses to the moon and stars), and of invocations of an unnamed lady, whom we cannot help strongly suspecting to be, like Dante's Beatrice, a vision of the author's imagination. We may be wrong, but to us the whole poem bears the appearance of fantastic display, rather than of real feeling. That Mr. Burbidge can write feelingly, his poems contain abundant evidence ; but here the feeling, if any exist, is smothered beneath the mass of artificial decoration; so that the entire piece, instead of presenting the grand and touching simplicity of a Grecian temple, exhibits the effect of an edifice on which ornaments, often beautiful in themselves, are heaped with so little taste or meaning, that the eye wanders over their endless repetitions, vainly seeking to discover the archi

tect's purpose or connecting principle of design.

The idea of "The Madman's Day" appears to have been taken from the story called "a Madman's Manuscript" in the Pickwick papers. It supposes one who was once a maniac, but now in his right mind, to describe one of those fierce workings of frenzy which once possessed his brain. The attempt to describe the irresistible impulse which ran like fire through his blood, hurrying him he knew not whither, may be considered a tolerably successful one: but it must be confessed that his mode of narration, necessarily violent and impassioned, leaves some alarming doubts of his complete restoration upon the reader's mind, as it must have done on that of his poor wife, who sits listening to his tale.

In the shorter poems there is much variety; and many of them are devoted to drawing thoughts and morals from the contemplation of nature. In these we meet with many pleasing and original ideas, but the thoughts are not always clearly expressed, being obscured by a redundancy of words and metaphors, which often materially weaken the general effect of the conception. His descriptions of nature are often fresh and vigorous, and prove

that he possesses observation and taste sufficient to ensure success in this department, if he proceeds to discipline his eye and hand upon right principles. Living, as he informs us, (p. 260,) in Warwickshire, he has but very ordinary scenery to employ his muse upon; but this is no disadvantage. The common objects of a quiet English landscape can never become hackneyed or common-place. They can no more be exhausted in poetry than in painting. The true poet will always find in them all, and more than all, he wants. But in order to describe nature with any success, Horace's rule must be remembered-Ut pictura poesis erit. As it is undoubtedly true that every great painter is essentially a poet, so he that would be the poet of nature must be a painter likewise. Their functions and qualifications are the same the powers of imagination or of fancy are similarly exerted in each. Both are sharers of " the vision and the faculty divine." They possess the same power of summoning before their mind's eye, not the vague and shadowy outline, not the dim and confused recollection, but the clear and distinct image of whatever they may wish to represent. The glorious conceptions of a great painter do not copy nature, but absolutely surpass her; inasmuch as they represent that which nature seems ever striving after, without ever quite attaining. Thus much of the previous process in the mindit is precisely the same in each. In what remains-the depicting so as to convey to the eye or mind of others the image thus created, both ought to be guided by the same principles. The various parts of which the piece is to consist must be grouped with a view to their effect in combination with each other; the colouring must be

heightened or subdued, according to position, light and shade, or distance. The picture must not be overwrought; not a stroke permitted which does not contribute to the general effect. There must not be distortion, by the undue prominence of subordinate objects; there must not be incongruity, by the immediate juxta-position of what is noble with what is mean. We do not mean to assert that the great poets worked by rules which their own instinctive and unerring taste rendered needless; but let the pictures in Homer, for example, be examined with this view, and it will be found that the principles of their composition are such as we have described. The poet, therefore, must look at nature with a painter's eye; and like him, his aim must be not to paint with minute accuracy every vein in the leaf, every ripple in the stream, but to convey the spirit of nature herself to the mind of his reader. Let him- leave something to be filled up by the reader's imagination, which will supply it in the manner most agreeable to itself.

These plain principles, the violation of which would be intolerable in painting, are sometimes, we think, unheeded in modern poetry. Some of Mr. Burbidge's pictures lie open to the charge of disproportion; in others the objects are too separate and detached; we want those masterly touches necessary to throw back, as it were, and combine the whole into one picture.

The volume comprises a great number of sonnets; in which difficult style of composition Mr. Burbidge's success, if not complete, is such as to warrant us in auguring well of his future productions. Of the following we need say nothing; by its simple pathos and gentle flow of language it will recom mend itself:


"Three sides a grove of yews, a gloomy grove,
Hung with their viscid fruit; the fourth the church,
A fane with yellow walls and scribbled porch,
Where rests the mouldering bier: around, above,
The sky, and a still air of peace and love,
Informing the green turf with gentler green
Than lies without; and shadow not unseen,
And coo clear-heard of meditative dove;
'Tis death's serenest garden: would that here
Many were laid, the blessing of whose graves
Is lost to me thou chiefly, mother blest,
Mother, own mother! whose unbroken rest
Is taken where the city's noisy waves

Roll loudly, and the busy tongue chafes near.”—(p. 234.)

Under the title of "Darkness Departed" are classed some poems, which the author tells us were written "during that unsettled state of mind which, I suppose, most men some time or other in their lives pass through; a state which, however morbid in itself, may be necessary to the formation of a sure and settled health." That most men pass through an unsettled state of mind may be true; but that it is necessary at any period of life to be sunk in the depths of despair-that a kind of mis

anthropic measles are to be undergone in order to attain a settled health of mind-we are disposed to deny. We think, on the other hand, that contentment, and, consequently, happiness, is at all times within our reach, if we seek it rightly. We are truly glad, however, that these days of darkness are at length" departed;" though we regret to notice in some of the other poems, traces of a similar unhealthy state of feeling. Mr. Burbidge asks in Mnemeion, (p. 50.)

"Now wherefore is it that the mute world changes
Even as we change?—that we must ever fling,
From grief to grief, as our vexed spirit ranges,
Our own black shadow on each happy thing-
Throw darkness on the lustrous eye of spring,
And with the echo of our own sad voices
Instruct the little summer birds to sing,

And dull with our grave tread all merry noises,

At which old Autumn laughs, and Winter's self rejoices ?"

Why, indeed? the reader may well ask. We will answer Mr. Burbidge out of his own mouth-(p. 284.)

"Off with the petted gloom-the toy
Of wilful boyhood tired of joy!

The heart which hath no inner blight
Is to itself its own delight,
And makes its bliss at home."

The "observations" at the end of the volume are devoted to a refutation of an anticipated objection to some of the poems, as "too open revelations of private feeling." These, the author contends, must be judged of by the faculty exerted in their production, viz. the heart alone. "Here then," he proceeds, "is no room for criticism, and to one, I think, who feels the solemnity which surrounds every phase of a human soul, there is still less room for disgust." (p. 346.) We think the apology unnecessary; it being generally acknowledged that by writing in poetry, we become privileged to speak of feelings which could not, without ridicule be revealed in prose. But the privilege is far too high and sacred a one to be trifled with as it has been in modern times. For a man to publish for the world's instruction every slightest shade of emotion which passes over his mind-every thought, wise or foolish, which the most trifling object may chance to suggest-this has, to say the least, an appearance of ostentation. For the idea must be, that all this must needs interest the public in the same degree in which it is interesting to the

individual himself. We are far from quoting Mr. Burbidge as a complete example of what we have been saying but it appears to us, that from feeling intensely, and from the habit of pondering over the workings of his own mind, he ascribes a degree of over importance to slight sensations, which leads him to write and publish such sonnets as that which we shall presently transcribe. There follows, moreover, another evil : this habit of constant and minute watching, places the mind under a species of restraint, which is fatal to the healthful and natural play of thought. There can be no such thing as free action under this system of surveillance; and the mind becomes strained into an unnatural liability to excitement from the most trivial causes. The result is, that the poet, continuing to look into his own inmost mind as the mirror of all true feeling, and finding there nothing but distortion to guide him, wanders farther and farther into error and absurdity; and thus, what is in fact self-deception, appears to the majority of his readers to be affectation. From such consequences as these, we hope that Mr. Burbidge's

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