Изображения страниц
[ocr errors][ocr errors][merged small]

When known to fame, but not to peace,

Alone, unfriended, worn with care,
The enthusiast bade his wanderings cease,

And breath'd once more his native air,
And hail'd again the tranquil scene
Where once he roved with heart serene,

The plant that bloom'd along the shore,

When there in happier hours he stray'd,
Still flourish'd gaily as before,

In all its azure charms array'd ;
There still it shone in modest pride,
While all his flowers of joy had died.

It seem'd to say, “ Hadst thou, like me,

- Contented bloom'd within the bed
* That nature's hand had form'd for thee,

• When first her dews were on thee shed,
• Then had thy blossoms never known
• The blasts that o'er their buds have blown.”

It seem'd to say, “ The loveliest flower,

That keeps unmoved its native sphere,
• May brave the season's changeful power,

And live through many a stormy year;
· For mercy guides the fiercest gale,
* And halcyon skies again prevail.”

Happy are those alone who aim

In duty's quiet path to shine,
And, careless of the meed of fame,

Unseen their fairest garlands twine;
Whilst He whose eye in secret sees,
To them the amaranth crown decrees.

Nymphæa alba. White Water-lily.

Polyandria Monogynia.

Leaves heart-shaped, very entire. Calyx four-cleft. Petals in several rows, resembling a double flower. The

flower opens about seven in the morning, closes about four in the afternoon, and then lies down upon the surface of the water. Leaf-stalks and fruit-stalks round, within full of pores, four of which are generally larger than the rest. Calyx leaves smaller than the outer petals. Summits seventeen or eighteen, placed in a circle, and corresponding with as many cells in the germen. Stamens fixed to the side of the germen. Leaves oval, with a deep notch at the base. Leafits nearly cen. tral. Petals numerous, white. This most beautiful aquatic floats its splendid white or

pinkish flowers by broad leaves.-Withering.

The Nymphæa alba 'may be justly called the most magnificent of our wild flowers. It has been considered as a rival to the magnolia of America, which indeed it strongly resembles when the blossoms of that shrub are partially expanded. It is more rare than the N. Lutea, but is nevertheless abundant in many parts of the kingdom. We can recall with delight, as no doubt many of our readers can, pleasant boat-excursions, in July or August, when our path in the waters has been skirted by widely-extended beds of white water-lilies, sometimes edging the shores with a deep, waving border of flowers and foliage, bending with every undulation of the stream; sometimes running up in broad alleys, between the flags and reeds, which seem to have broken their ranks, and made an opening to give them room. It is scarcely possible to imagine any thing more beautiful than these fine blossoms, each one floating on a broad, green leaf, which spreads beneath it as it rises to the surface of the water, and looks like a salver of verd antique supporting a vase of ivory. In Egypt this flower was dedicated to the moon. It grows luxuriantly in the Nile, and was the more reverenced from that circumstance, since the river was itself held sacred by the inhabitants of the land. These " white blossoms of the Nile” were considered emblematic of purity and chastity; and the bands of virgin priestesses who ministered in the temples, wore them wreathed in their hair, on solemn or festive occasions, as their most appropriate ornament. It should also be remembered, that it is a flower of this tribe, though not the N. a. which is so celebrated by the poets of the east. The N. nelumbo is the lotus of India; the theme of legend and of song in every age of oriental literature.



THE noon was shady, and soft airs

Swept Ouse's silent tide,
When, 'scap'd from literary cares,

I wander'd on his side.

My spaniel, prettiest of his race,

And high in pedigree,
(Two nymphs, adorn'd with every grace,

That spaniel found for me,)

Now wanton'd, lost in flags and reeds ;

Now starting into sight,
Pursued the swallow o'er the meads

With scarce a slower flight.

It was the time when Ouse display'd

His lilies newly blown:
Their beauties I intent survey'd ;

And one I wish'd my own.

With cane extended far, I sought

To steer it close to land; But still the prize, though nearly caught,

Escap'd my eager hand.

Beau mark'd my unsuccessful pains

With fix'd, considerate face ;
And puzzling, set his puppy brains

To comprehend the case.

But with a cherup clear and strong,

Dispersing all his dream,,
I thence withdrew, and follow'd long

The windings of the stream.

My ramble finish’d, I return'd;

Beau, trotting far before,
The floating wreath again discern’d,

And plunging left the shore.

I saw him, with that lily croppid,

Impatient swim to meet
My quick approach, and soon he dropp'd

The treasure at my feet.

Charm'd with the sight, the world, I cried,

Shall know of this thy deed ; My dog shall mortify the pride

Of man's superior breed.

« ПредыдущаяПродолжить »