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No children run to lisp their sire's return, Or climb his knees, the envy'd kiss to share.
Oft did the harvest to their sickle yield; Their furrow ost the stubborn glebe has broke;
How jocund did they drive their team afield ! How bow'd the woods beneath their sturdy stroke!
Let not Ambition mock their useful toil, Their homely joys, and destiny obscure;
Nor Grandeur hear with a disdainful smile, The short and simple annals of the poor;
The boast of heraldry, the pomp of power,
Await, alike, the inevitable tour :-
Nor you, ye Proud ! impute to these the fault,
Where, thro' the long-drawn aisle, and fretted vault, The pealing anthem swells the note of praise.
Can storied urn, or animated bust,
Can honor's voice provoke the silent dust-
Perhaps, in this neglected spot, is laid
Hands that the rod of empire might have swayed, Or waked to ecstacy the living lyre.
But Knowledge to their eyes her ample page, Rich with the spoils of Time, did ne'er unroll;
Chill Penury repressed their noble rage, And froze the genial current of the soul.
Full many a gem of purest ray serene The dark, unfathom’d caves of ocean bear;
Full many a flower is born to blush unseen, And waste its sweetness on the desert air.
Some village Hampden, that, with dauntless breast, The little tyrant of his fields withstood;
Some mute inglorious Milton here may rest, Some Cromwell, guiltless of his country's blood.
The applause of listening senates to command, The threats of pain and ruin to despise,
To scatter plenty o'er a smiling land, And read their history in a nation's eyes,
Their lot forbade : nor circumscribed, alone, Their growing virtues,—but their crimes confined ;
Forbade to wade thro' slaughter to a throne; And shut the gate of mercy on mankind;
The struggling pangs of conscious Truth to hide ; To quench the blushes of ingenuous Shame;
Or heap the shrine of Luxury and Pride With incense kindled at the Muse's flame!
Yet, even these bones from insult to protect, Some frail memorial, still erected nigh,
With uncouth rhymes, and shapeless sculpture, decked, Implores the passing tribute of a sigh.
Their names, their years, spelt by the unlettered Muse, The place of fame and elegy supply ;
And many a holy text around she strews That teach the rustic moralist to die,
For who, to dumb Forgetfulness a prey, This pleasing, anxious being e'er resigned,
Left the warm precincts of the cheerful day, Nor cast one longing-lingering look behind ?
On some fond breast the parting soul relies; Some pious drops the closing eye requires;
Even from the tomb, the voice of Nature cries, Even in our ashes, live their wonted fires.
For thee, who, mindful of the unhonored dead, Dost, in these lines, their artless talę relate,
By chance and lonely Contemplation led, To wander in the gloomy walks of fate;
Hark! how the sacred calm that breathes around, Bids every fierce tumultuous passion cease;
In still small accents whispering from the ground A grateful earnest of eternal peace !
No more, with nature and thyself at strife, Give anxious cares and endless wishes room,
But thro' the cool sequestered vale of life Pursue the noisless tenor of thy doom.
STRANGER, if thou has learnt a truth which needs
That waked them into life. Even the green trees Partake the deep contentment; as they bend To the soft winds, the sun from the blue sky Looks in, and sheds a blessing on the scene. Scarce less the cleft-born wild-flower seems to enjoy Existence, than the winged plunderer That sucks its sweets. The massy rocks themselves, The old and ponderous trunks of prostrate trees, That lead from knoll to knoll, a causey rude, Or bridge the sunken brook, and their dark roots With all their earth upon them, twisting high, Breathe fixed tranquillity. The rivulet Sends forth glad sounds, and tripping o'er its bed Of pebbly sands, or leaping down the rocks, Seems with continuous laughter to rejoice In its own being. Softly tread the marge, Lest from her midway perch, thou scare the wren That dips her bill in water. The cool wind, That stirs the stream in play, shall come to thee, Like one that loves thee, nor will let thee pass Ungreeted, and shall give its light embrace.
CXI. GERTRUDE.--Mrs. Hemans. The Baron Von der Wart, accused, though it is believed unjustly, as an accomplice in the assassination of the Emperor Albert, was bound alive on the wheel, and attended by his wife Gertrude, throughout his last agonizing moments, with the most heroic fidelity. Her own sufferings, and those of her unfortunate husband, are most affectingly described in a letter which she afterwards addressed to a female friend, and which was published some years ago at Haarlem, in a book entitled “Gertrude Von der W'art, or fidelity unto Death." Her hands were clasped, her dark eyes raised,
The breeze threw back her hair;
All that she loved was there.
The holy heaven above;
Its pale stars watching to behold
The night of earthly love. “ And bid me not depart,” she cried,
“My Rudolph ! say not so ! This is no time to quit thy side,
Peace, peace! I cannot go.
When death is on thy brow ?
I will not leave thee now?
Of glory and of bliss,
To strengthen me through this !
Whose rest shall soon be won.”
From Woman's breaking heart?
She bore her lofty part:
With such a curdling cheek--Love, love ! of mortal agony,
Thou, only thou, shouldst speak!
Her voice that he might hear;
To happy bosoms near :
Beside his tortured form,
Forth on the rushing storm.
With her pale hands and soft,