« ПредыдущаяПродолжить »
“ No envious wish my fellows to excel,
Nor sordid money-getting cares be mine ;
Nor meanly grand among the poor to shine:
With those cheap pleasures and light cares of thine,
And walking well with God in nature's eye,
Love at my board, and friendship dwelling nigh,
And, when I'm called in rapturous hope to die,
And challenge earth to show a happier man!" But the best set of stanzas in the " • And for a home, -would I had none! volume are those entitled Ellen Gray. The home I have, a wicked one, The subject is distressing, and has They will not let me in, been treated so often—perhaps too Till I can fee my jailor's hands often—as to be now exhausted-or if With the vile tribute she demands, not so, nothing new can be expected
The wages of my sin: on it, except either from original ge- . " I see your goodness on me frown; nius, or from a spirit made creative Yet hear the veriest wretch on town, by profoundest sympathy and sorrow While yet in life she may for the last extremities of human Tell the sad story of her grief, misery.
Though heav'n alone can bring relief
To guilty Ellen Gray.
My mother died when I was born : “ A starless night, and bitter cold;
And I was flung, a babe forlorn,
Upon the workhouse floor :
My father,-would I knew him not!
A squalid thief, a reckless sot,
- I dare not tell you more. Swept onward thick and fast ;
** And I was bound an infant-slave, “When crouched at an unfriendly door, With no one near to love, or save Faint, sick, and miserably poor,
From cruel sordid men,
A friendless, famish'd child,
•* • My heart was pure, my cheek was fair. “Was I to pass her coldly by,
Ah, would to God a cancer there Leaving her there to pine and die, Had eaten out its way!
The live-long freezing night? For soon my tasker, dreaded man, The secret answer of my heart
With treacherous wiles and arts began Told me I had not done my part
To mark me for his prey.
* And month by month he vainly stroke She look'd her thanks,—then droop'd To light the flame of lawless love her head;
In my most loathing breast ; • Have you no friend, no home?' I said. Oh, how I feard and hated him,
.Get up, poor creature, come, So basely kind, so smoothly grim, You seem
ppy, faint, and weak, My terror and my pest! How can I serve or save you, -speak, Or whither help you home?'
" Thenceforward droop'd my stricken " • Alas, kind sir, poor Ellen Gray
head; Has had no friend this many a day, I liv'd....I died, a life of dread,
And, but that you seem kind, Lest they should guess my shame ; She has not found the face of late But weeks and months would pass away, That look'd on her in aught but hate, And all too soon the bitter day And still despairs to find :
Of wrath and ruin came ;
• • I could not hide my alter'd form ;
Of gibe and insult burst :
Me, their poor sister, curst.
" • And little can the untempted dream,
They keep the letter-laws,
They knew how hunger gnaws.
Before me flew my shame ;
The child of evil fame.
* • O woman, had thy kindless face
And heal'd the wounds it gave!
A finger out to save.
" • They tore my baby from my heart
Where I could hear its cry,
Although I heard it die !
" • Alas. why need I count by links
My heart, my soul, my all ?
And lived upon my fall :
"Still the stone hearts that ruled theplace Let me not kiss my darling's face,
My little darling dead ; 0 I was mad with rage and hate, And yet all sullenly I sate,
And not a word I said.
* • I would not stay, I could noi bear
That kill'd my precious child :
With fear and anguish wild :
“ • Now was I reckless, bold, and bad,
With thinking on my wrongs ;
Such meed to guilt belongs.
And yet I hoped I might
my best friend and lover---Death, In the fierce frowns and frozen breath
Of this December night.
I know that you will stay:
"Till down upon a river's bank,
And only long'd to die ;
To life and misery.
" • Ah, lightly heed tho righteous few " Her eye was fixed ; she said no more, How little to themselves is due.
But propp'd against the cold street-door But all things given to them ;
She leaned her fainting head ; Yet the unwise because untaught, One moment she look'd up and smild, The wandering sheep, because unsought, Full of new hope, as Mercy's child, They heartlessly condem :
And the poor girl was dead." We do not think the idea very happy of “ Contrasted Sonnets"-—such as, Nature-Art; The Happy Home-The Wretched Home; Theory—Practice ; Ritches-Poverty; Philanthropic-Misanthropic; Country-Town; and so on-and tis an ancient, nay, a stale idea, though Mr Tupper evidently thinks it fresh and new, and luxuriates in it as if it were all his own. Sometimes he chooses to shew that he is ambidexter--and how much may be said on both sides—leaving the reader's mind in a state of indifference to what may really be the truth of the matter-or disposed to believe that he knows more about it than the Sonnetteer. The best are Prose and Poetry and they are very good-so is “ Ancient,” but Modern is very bad-and therefore we quote the three
" That the fine edge of intellect is dulled,
And the numb'd heart so deep in stupor lulled
That virtue's self is weak its love to lure,
But pride and lust keep all the gates secure,
The selfish, useful, money-making plan,
Where in hard matter sinks ideal man ;
Thy darkness to confound with yon bright band
" To touch the heart, and make its pulses thrill,
To raise and purify the grovelling soul,
To conquer passion with a mild controul,
These are thine aims, 0 pure unearthly power,
And therefore these, who have thee for their dower,
Eat angels' food, the manna thou dost shower :
Whether to read, or write, or think, or hear,
“My sympathies are all with times of old,
I cannot live with things of yesterday,
Upstart, and flippant, foolish, weak, and gay,
I love to wander o'er the shadowy past,
And seem to find myself almost the last
Of a lime-honoured race, decaying fast ;
Conjuring up what story it might tell,
And in a desert could delight to dwell
Mr Tupper has received much praise bation of the public. Perhaps our from critics whose judgment is gene- rough notes may help him to discover rally entitled to great respect–in the where his strength lies; and, with his Atlas—if we mistake not—in the right feelings, and amiable sensibilSpectator—and in the Sun.
If our ties, and fine enthusiasm, and healthy censure be undeserved—let our copious powers when exercised on familias i quotations justify themselves, and be and domestic themes, so dear for our condemnation. Our praise may ever to the human heart, there seems seem cold and scanty ; but so far no reason why, in good time, be from despising Mr Tupper's talents, may not be among our
our especta we have good hopes of him, and do favourites, and one of the Swan not fear but that he will produce many of Thames"-which we believe, ar far better things than the best of as big and as bright as those of the those we have selected for the appro. Tweed.
Alas! for poor Nicol! Dead and gone-but not to be forgotten—for aye to be emembered among the flowers of the forest, early wede away!
THE HA' BIBLE.
“Chief of the Household Gods
Which hallow Scotland's lowly cottage-homes !
That speak, though dumb, deep thought upon me comes-
" The Mountains old and hoar
The chainless Winds—the Streams so pure and free-
The waving Forest—the eternal Sea-
“O! I could worship thee!
Thou art a gift a God of love might give ;
In thy Almighty-written pages live!
“God! unto Thee I kneel,
And thank Thee! Thou unto my native land-
Hast stretch'd in love Thy Everlasting hand,
“ And, Father, Thou hast spread
Before Men's eyes this Charter of the Free,
And Justice love, and Truth and Liberty.
« Thou doubly-precious Book !
Unto thy light what doth not Scotland owe?
And Youth in truth unsullied up to grow!
“O'er thy broad ample page
How many dim and aged eyes have pored ?
In silence deep and holy have adored ?
“And o'er thee soft young hands
Have oft in truthful plighted Love been join'd,
Hast been a bond-an altar of the mind!
We have no heart to write about him his memory—they breathe of the holy and his genius and his virtues now; fragrance that u smells sweet and but these lines which Scotland “will blossoms in the dust.” And how not willingly let die,” will embalm beautiful are these !
A DAY AMONG THE MOUNTAINS. A bonnie bumin' bush o' brume
Waved o'er me in my dream. "Come sit by your father's knee,
I laid me there in slumberous jos My son,
Upo' the giant kuee On the seat by your faiher's door, Of yonder peak, that seem'd to bend And the thoughts of your youthful heart, In watching over me.
Like a stream of Gladness pour; "'I dream'd a bonnie bonnie dream, For, afar ’mong the lonely hills,
As sleepin' there I lay:-
I thochi I brightly roun' me saw
To live in glen an' woldYea, all thou hast thought and seen?" Tosport in dells neath harve:t-tunes
As in the days o' old. "• When more abune yon eastern hill
Had raised its glimmerin' e'e, "I saw them dance upon the breeze, I hied me to tbe heather hills,
An' hide within the flowerWhar' gorcocks crawin' fee; Sing bonnie an' unearthly sangs, An'e'er the laverock sought the list, An'skim the lakelets o'er! Frae out the dewy dens,
That hour the beings o' the past,I wanderin' was by mountain streams O' ages lost an' gone In lane an’hoary glens.
Came back to earth, an' grot an’glen
War' peopled every one! "• Auld frownin' rocks on either hand,
Uprear'd their heads to Heaven, "'The vision filed, an' I awoke :Like temple-pillars which the fooi The sun was sinkin' doon;
O'Time had crush'u an' riven; The mountain-birds frae hazles brown An' voices frae ilk mossy stane
Had sung their gloamin' tape: Upo' my ear did flow,
The dew was fallin' on the leai, They spake o' Nature's secrets a' The breezes on the flower; The iales o' long ago.
An' Nature's heart was beating calm,
It was the evening hour. "" The daisy, frae the burnie's side, Was lookin' up to GOD
"'An', father, whan the more arose, The crag that crown'd the towering Upo' a mountain-height peak
I stude an’ saw the brow of earth Seem'd kneeling on the sod:
Bound wi'its siller light. A sound was in ilk dowie glen, Nae sound cam' on the watching ear Au'on ilk naked rock
Upo' that silent hill; On mountain-peak-in valley lone My e’en war' fill'd with tears, the boor An' haly words it spoke.
Sae holy was an' still! "The pameless flowers that budded “There was a lowly mound o' green up
Beside me risin' there, Each beauteous desart child
A pillow whar'a bairn might kneel, The heather's scarlet blossoms spread An'say its twilight prayer. O'er many a lanely wild :
The niunelight kiss'd the gladsome The lambkins, sporting in the glens flowers The mountains old and bare
That o'er that mound did ware; Seem'd wor shipping; and there with Then I remember'd that I stnde them
Aside the Martyrs' grave! I breathed my morning prayer.
“I knelt upo' that hallow'd earth, Alang o'er monie a mountain-tap While Memory pictured o'er Alang through monie a glen The changing scenes
the changing Wi’Nature haudin' fellowship,
thoughts, I journey'd far frae men.
That day had held in store; Whiles suddenly a lonely tarn
An’then my breast wi'gladness swell'd, Wad burst upon my eye,
An' God in love did bless,An' whiles frae out the solitudes
He gave me, 'mong auld 'Scotland's Wad come the breezes' cry.
A day o' happiness !" o. At noon, I made my grassy couch
Beside a haunted stream,