Изображения страниц
PDF
EPUB

Round her pale neck his dying arms he wreathes,
And on her marble lips his last, his death-kiss breathes.
Down, trembling wing !-shall insect weakness keep

The sun-defying eagle's sweep?

A mortal strike celestial strings, And feebly echo what a seraph sings?

Who now shall grace the glowing throne

Where, all unrivall’d, all alone,
Bold Shakspeare sat, and look'd creation through,
The minstrel monarch of the worlds he drew!

That throne is cold—that lyre in death unstrung
On whose proud note delighted Wonder hung.
Yei old Oblivion, as in wrath he sweeps,
One spot shall spare,-the grave where Shakspeare sleeps.
Rulers and ruled in common gloom may lie,
But Nature's laureate bards shall never die.
Art's chisellid boast and Glory's trophied shore
Must live in numbers, or can live no more.
While sculptured Jove some nameless waste may claim,
Still rolls the Olympic car in Pindar's fame;
Troy's doubtful walls in ashes pass'd away,
Yet frown on Greece in Homer's deathless lay;
Rome, slowly sinking in her crumbling fanes,
Stands all immortal in her Maro's strains ;
So, too, yon giant empress of the isles,
On whose broad sway the sun forever smiles,
To Time's unsparing rage one day must bend,
And all her triumphs in her Shakspeare end!

O Thou! to whose creative power

We dedicate the festal hour,
While Grace and Goodness round the altar stand,
Learning's anointed train, and Beauty's rose-lipp'd band-

Realms yet unborn, in accents now unknown,
Thy song shall learn, and bless it for their own.
Deep in the West as Independence roves,
His banners planting round the land he loves,
Where Nature sleeps in Eden's infant grace,
In Time's full hour shall spring a glorious race.
Thy name, thy verse, thy language, shall they bear,
And deck for thee the vaulted temple there.

Our Roman-hearted fathers broke

Thy parent empire's galling yoke; But thou, harmonious master of the mind,

Around their sons a gentler chain shalt bind; Once more in thee shall Albion's sceptre wave, And what her Monarch lost her Monarch-Bard shall save.

THE BROTHERS.
WE ARE BUT TWO-the others sleep

Through Death's untroubled night;
We are but two-oh, let us keep

The link that binds us bright!

Heart leaps to heart—the sacred flood

That warms us is the same;
That good old man-his honest blood

Alike we fondly claim.
We in one mother's arms were lock'd

Long be her love repaid ;
In the same cradle we were rock'd,

Round the same hearth we play'd.
Our boyish sports were all the same,

Each little joy and woe;
Let manhood keep alive the flame,

Lit up so long ago.
WE ARE BUT Two-be that the band

To hold us till we die;
Shoulder to shoulder let us stand,

Till side by side we lie.

THE FAMILY MEETING."

We are all here!
Father, mother,

Sister, brother,
All who hold each other dear.
Each chair is fillid-we're all at home;
To-night let no cold stranger come;
It is not often thus around
Our old familiar hearth we're found.
Bless, then, the meeting and the spot;
For once be every care forgot ;
Let gentle Peace assert her power,
And kind Affection rule the hour;

We're all-all here.

We're not all here!
Some are away,—the dead ones dear
Who throng'd with us this ancient hearth,
And gave the hour to guiltless mirth.
Fate, with a stern, relentless hand,
Look'd in and thinn'd our little band;
Some like a night-flash pass'd away,
And some sank, lingering, day by day :
The quiet graveyard—some lie there:
And cruel Ocean has his share-

We're not all here.

We are all here !
Even they—the dead-though dead, so dear.

These lines were written on occasion of the accidental meeting of all the strviving members of a family, the father and mother of which, one eighty-two, the other eighty years old, have lived in the same house fifty-three years.

Fond Memory, to her duty true,
Brings back their faded forms to view.
How lifelike, through the mist of years,
Each well-remember'd face appears!
We see them as in times long past;
From each to each kind looks are cast;
We hear their words, their smiles behold,
They're round us as they were of old-

We are all here.
We are all here!
Father, mother,

Sister, brother,
You that I love with love so dear.
This may not long of us be said:
Soon must we join the gather'd dead;
And by the hearth we now sit round
Some other circle will be found.
Oh, then, that wisdom may we know
Which yields a life of peace below!
So, in the world to follow this,
May each repeat, in words of bliss,

We're all—all here!

THE WINGED WORSHIPPERS.

ADDRESSED TO TWO SWALLOWS THAT FLEW INTO CHAUNCEY-PLACE CHURCH

DURING DIVINE SERVICE.

Gay, guiltless pair,
What seek ye from the fields of heaven!

Ye have no need of prayer,
Ye have no sins to be forgiven.

Why perch ye here,
Where mortals to their Maker bend?

Can your pure spirits fear
The God ye never could offend?

Ye never knew
The crimes for which we come to weep:

Penance is not for you,
Bless'd wanderers of the urper deep.

To you 'tis given
To wake sweet Nature's untaught lays;

Beneath the arch of heaven
To chirp away a life of praise.

Then spread each wing,
Far, far above, o'er lakes and lands,

And join the choirs that sing
In yon blue dome not rear'd with hands.

Or, if ye stay,
To note the consecrated hour,

Teach me the airy way,
And let me try your envied power.

Above the crowd,
On upward wings could I but fly,

I'd bathe in yon bright cloud,
And seek the stars that gem the sky.

"Twere Heaven indeed Through fields of trackless light to soar,

On Nature's charms to feed,
And Nature's own great God adore !

I SEE THEE STILL.

I rock'd her in the cradle,
And laid her in the tomb. She was the youngest,
What fireside circle hath pot felt the charm
or that sweet tie? The youngest ne'er grow old,
The fond endearments of our earlier days
We keep alive in them, and when they die
Our youthful joys we bury with them.

I see thee still; Remembrance, faithful to her trust, Calls thee in beauty from the dust; Thou comest in the morning light, Thou’rt with me through the gloomy night; In dreams I meet thee as of old ; Then thy soft arms my neck enfold, And thy sweet voice is in my ear: In every scene to memory dear,

I see thee still.

I see thee still, In every hallow'd token round; This little ring thy finger bound, This lock of hair thy forehead shaded, This silken chain by thee was braided, These flowers, all wither'd now, like thee, Sweet Sister, thou didst cull for me; This book was thine; here didst thou read; This picture ah! yes, here indeed

I see thee still.

I see thee still;
Here was thy summer noon's retreat,
Here was thy favorite fireside seat;
This was thy chamber-here, each day,
I sat and watch'd thy sad decay:
Here, on this bed, thou last didst lie;
Here, on this pillow,-thou didst die.
Dark hour! once more its woes unfold:
As then I saw thee, pale and cold,

I see thee still.

I see thee still;
Thou art not in the grave confined -
Death cannot claim the immortal Mind;

Let Earth close o'er its sacred trust,
But Goodness dies not in the dust;
Thee, O my Sister! 'tis not thee
Beneath the coffin's lid I see;
Thou to a fairer land art gone;
There, let me hope, my journey done,

To see thee still!

JOIN HOWARD PAYNE, 1792–1852.

John Howard Payne was born in the city of New York, June 9, 1792. He early showed great poetical taste, together with a strong passion for the stage, on which he made his first appearance at the Park Theatre of his native city, in bis sixteenth year, in the character of Young Norval. After that, for some years, he performed in our chief cities with great success. In 1813 he went to England, and established in London a theatrical journal, called the Opera-Glass. He returned home in 1834, and in 1851 was appointed Consul at Tunis, where he died the next year, at the age of sixty.

Payne wrote a number of dramas and other poems; but he is now only known by the favorite air of Home, Sweet Home, which he introduced, when in London, into an opera called “ Clari; or, The Maid of Milan." No song was ever more popular; and the profits arising from it (which went to the manager of the theatre, Charles Kemble, and not to Payne) are said to have amounted to two thousand guineas in two years. It is known and admired wherever the English language is spoken, and richly deserves a place here.

HOME, SWEET HOME.

'Mid pleasures and palaces though we may roam,
Be it ever so humble, there's no place like home!
A charm from the skies seems to hallow us there,
Which, seek through the world, is ne'er met with elsewhere.

Home! home! sweet home!
There's no place like home!

An exile from home, splendor dazzles in vain:
Oh, give me my lowly thatch'd cottage again;
The birds singing gayly that came at my call:
Give me these, and the peace of mind, dearer than all.

Home! sweet, sweet home!
There's no place like home!

« ПредыдущаяПродолжить »