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IN joyous youth, what soul hath never known
There be, perhaps, who barren hearts avow,
Who that would ask a heart to dulness wed,
Till Hymen brought his love-delighted hour,
OH! lives there, Heav'n! beneath thy dread expanse, One hopeless, dark Idolater of Chance, Content to feed, with pleasures unrefin'd, The lukewarm passions of a lowly mind; Who, mould'ring earthward, rest of every trust, In joyless union wedded to the dust, Could all his parting energy dismiss, And call this barren world sufficient bliss ? There live, alas ! of Heav'n-directed mien, Of cultur'd soul, and sapient eye serene, Who hail thee, Man! the pilgrim of a day, Spouse of the worm, and brother of the clay! Frail as the leaf in Autumn's yellow bower, Dust in the wind, or dew upon the flower! A friendless slave, a child without a sire, Whose mortal life, and momentary fire, Lights to the grave his chance-created form, As ocean-wrecks illuminate the storm; And, when the gun's tremendous flash is o'er, To Night and silence sink for ever more!
Are tnese the pompous tidings ye proclaim, Lights of the world, and demi-gods of Fame? Is this your triumph-this your proud applause, Children of Truth, and champions of her cause? For this hath Science search'd, on weary wing, By shore and sea-each mute and living thing? Lanch'd with Iberia's pilot from the steep, To worlds unknown, and isles beyond the deep? Or round the cope her living chariot driv'n, And wheel'd in triumph through the signs of Heav'n? Oh! star-ey'd Science, hast thou wander'd there, To waft us home the message of despair? Then bind the palm, thy sage's brow to suit, Of blasted leaf, and death-distilling fruit! Ah me! the laureld wreath that murder rears, Blood-nurs'd, and water'd by the widow's tears, Seems not so foul, so tainted, and so dread, As waves the night-shade round the sceptic head. What is the bigot's torch, the tyrant's chain? I smile on death, if Heav'n-ward Hope remain! But, if the warring winds of Nature's strife Be all the faithless charter of my life
If Chance awak'd, inexorable pow'r!
To know Delight but by her parting smile,
Cease every joy to glimmer on my mind, But leave-oh! leave the light of Hope behind ! What though my winged hours of bliss have been, Like angel-visits, few, and far between! Her musing mood shall every pang appease, And charm—when pleasures lose the power to please!.
Eternal Hope! when yonder spheres sublime Peal'd their first notes to sound the march of Time, Thy joyous youth began—but not to fade. When all the sister planets have decay'd; When wrapt in fire the realms of ether glow, And Heaven's last thunder shakes the world below; Thou, undismay'd, shalt o'er the ruins smile, And light thy torch at Nature's funeral pile !
THE ROSE OF THE WILDERNESS.
AT the silence of twilight's contemplative hour,
I have mus'd in a sorrowful mood,
Where the home of my forefathers stood.
And lonely the dark raven's sheltering tree; And travella by few is the grass-cover'd road, Where the hunter of deer and the warrior trode
To his hills that encircle the sea.
Yet wandering, I found on my ruinous walk,
By the dial stone aged and green,
To mark where a garden had been.
All wild in the silence of Nature, it drew,
Where the flower of my forefathers grew.
That remains in this desolate heart! The fabric of bliss to its centre may fall;
But patience shall never depart!
In the days of delusion by fancy combin'd,
And leave but a desert behind.
Be hush'd, my dark spirit! for wisdom condemns
When the faint and the feeble deplore;
A thousand wild waves on the shore !
May thy front be unaltered, thy courage elate;
To bear is to conquer our fate,
THE LAST MAN.
The Sun himself must die,
Adown the gulf of time!
As Adam saw her prime!
The Sun's eye had a sickly glare,
The Earth with age was wan,
Around that lonely man!
In plague and famine some !
Yet, prophet-like, that lone one stood,
With dauntless words and high,
As if a storra pass'd by, .
'Tis Mercy bids thee go.
That shall no longer flow.
What though beneath thee man put forth
His pomp, his pride, his skill;
The vassals of his will ;
For all those trophied arts
Entail'd on human hearts,