Изображения страниц

s 3. The chase was now truly soul-stirring. Sometimes the lar.

board, then the starboard, then the waist boat took the lead. It ' was a severe trial of skill and muscle. After we had run two e miles at this rate, the whales turned flukes, El going straight to chwindward. “Now for it, my lads!” cried our headsman. “We'll they have them the next rising. Now pile it on! A long, steady

pull! That's it! That's the way! Those whales belong to mus. Don't give out! Half an hour more, and they're our

whales.” On dashed the boat, clearing its way through the rough sea, as if the briny element were lue smoke. The whale we pursued, however, turned flukes before we could reach him. When he appeared again above the surface of the water, it was

evident that he had gone a good distance while down, gaining on Tous nearly a mile.

4. The chase was now almost hopeless, as the whale was making to windward rapidly. A heavy black cloud was on the horizon, portending an approaching squall, and the bark was fast fading from sight. Still we were not to be baffled by discouraging circumstances of this kind, and we braced our sinews for a grand and final effort. The wind had by this time increased almost to a gale, and the heavy black clouds were scattering far and wide. Part of the squall had passed off 'to leeward, and entirely concealed the bark. Our situation was rather unpleasant, in a rough sea, the other boats out of sight, and each moment the wind increasing. We continued to strain every muscle till we were hard upon the whale. Tabor sprang to the bow, El and stood by it with the harpoon.

5. “ Softly, softly, my lads !” said the headsman. — “Ay, ay, sir.” — “Hush-h-h! Softly ! Now's your time, Tabor!” Tabor let fly the harpoon, and buried the iron. “Stern all!” thundered the headsman. “Stern all!” And as we rapidly backed from the whale, he flung his tremendous flukes high in the air, covering us with a cloud of spray. He then plunged down under water, making the line whiz as it passed through the chocks. EI When he rose to the surface again, we hauled up, and the second mate stood ready in the bow to despatch him with lances.

6. “He is spouting blood !” said Tabor; "he is a dead whale. He will not need much lancing.” It was true enough; for, before the officer could get within dart's reach of him, the monster commenced his dying struggles. The sea was crimsoned with bis blood. We lay upon our oars a moment to witness his last throes, and when he had turned his head towards the sun a loud simultaneous cheer burst from every lip. J. ROSS BROWNE


WHEN Music, heavenly maid, was young,
While yet in early Greece she sung,
The Passions oft, to hear her shell, EI
Thronged around her magic cell:
Exulting, trembling, raging, fainting,
Possessed beyond the Muse's painting,
By turns, they felt the glowing mind
Disturbed, delighted, raised, refined :
Till once, 't is said, when all were fired,
Filled with fury, rapt, inspired,
From the supporting myrtles round,
They snatched her instruments of sound;
And, as they oft had heard apart
Sweet lessons of her forceful art,
Each — for madness ruled the hour -
Would prove his own expressive power.

2. First, Fear156 his hand, its skill to try,

Amid the chords bewildered laid :
And back recoiled, he knew not why,

E'en at the sound himself had made.

3. Next, Anger rushed; his eyes on fire

In lightnings owned his secret stings;
In one rude clash he struck the lyre,

And swept with hurried hand the strings

4. With woful measures wan Despair —

Low, sullen sounds!— his grief beguiled
A solemn, strange, and mingled air;

'T was sad by fits, by starts 't was wild.
5. But thou, O Hope! with eyes so fair,

What was thy delighted measure ?

Still it whispered promised pleasure,

And băde the lovely scenes at distance hail Still would her touch the strain prolong;

And from the rocks, the woods, the vale, She called on Echo still through all her song:

And where her sweetest theme she chose,

A soft responsive voice was heard at every close ; And Hope, enchanted, smiled, and waved her golden Lair,

A. And longer had she sung - but, with a frown,

Revenge impatient rose.
He threw his blood-stained sword in thunder down ;

And, with a withering look,
The war-denouncing trumpet took

And blew a blast so loud and dread,
Were ne'er prophetic sounds so full of woe,

And, ever and anon, he beat

The doubling drum with furious heat:
And though, sometimes, each dreary pause between,

Dejected Pity, at his side,

Her soul-subduing voice applied,
Yet still he kept his wild, unaltered mien,
While each strained ball of sight seemed bursting from his bead
7. Thy numbers, Jealousy, to naught were fixed;

Sad proof of thy distressful state!
Of differing themes the veering song was mixed;

And, now it courted Love; now, raving, called on Hate. 8. With eyes up-raised, as one inspired,

Pale Melancholy sat retired ;
And, from her wild, sequestered seat,

In notes, by distance made more sweet,
Poured through the mellow horn her pensive soul :

And, dashing soft from rocks around,

Bubbling runnels joined the sound:
Through glades and glooms the mingled measure stole,
Or o'er some haunted streams with fond delay

(Round a holy calm diffusing,

Love of peace, and lonely musing) In hollow murmurs died away.

[ocr errors]

But, O! how altered was its sprightlier tone,
When Cheerfulness, a nymph of healthiest hue,

Her bow across her shoulder flung,
Her huskins gemmed with morning dew,

Blew an inspiring air, that166 dale and thicket rung!

The hunter's call, to Faun and Dryad known!
The oak-crowned Sisters, and their chaste-eyed Queen,
Satyrs and sylvan boys, were seen,
Peeping from forth their alleys green ;
Brown Exercise rejoiced to hear,

And Sport leaped up, and seized his beechen spear. 10. Last came Joy's ecstatic trial :

He, with viny crown advancing,
First to the lively pipe his hands addressed :
But soon he saw the brisk awakening viol,
Whose sweet, entrancing voice he loved the best.
They would have thought, who heard the strain,
They saw in Tempë’ski vale her native maids,

Amid the festal-sounding shades,
To some unwearied minstrel dancing :
While, as his flying fingers kissed the strings,

« ПредыдущаяПродолжить »