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To those who have already learned to love, and, to those who have yet to love, these pages are alike dedicated; and thus the Dedication becomes of universal application; sor—
“It is decreed by Heaven above,
That soon or late we all must love.”
That the love of all, who may find an echo to their own thoughts within this little volume, may be pure and prosperous, is the sincere desire of their well-wisher,
CoMF, thou lover, on whose eyes
Dreams of absent beauty rise,
In my little page thou’lt find
Balmy medicine for the mind:
Love still living in its prime,
Tried by sorrow, tried by time.
O'er the clouds of human ill
Soaring angel-pinioned still.
Come, thou maiden, sweet and young,
Like a lyre with silver strung,
Like the breathing violet,
Still with morning’s kisses wet;
Like a sweet bird in its nest,
Stranger to the world's unrest,
Ere upon the breeze it flings
The rich painting of its wings:
Thou shalt find a wondrous spell
In my little oracle.
Visions bright of happy youth,
Thoughts of tenderness and truth,
Blooms that, borrowed from the skies,
Tell on earth of paradise !
I’ll sing of heroes and of kings,
In mighty numbers, mighty things.
Begin, my Muse! but, lo! the strings
To my great song rebellious prove;
The strings will sound of naught but love.
I broke them all, and put on new;
'Tis this or nothing sure will do.
These sure, said I, will me obey;
These sure heroic notes will play.
Straight I began with “Thundering Jove,
And all the immortal powers;” but Love,
Love smiled, and from my enfeebled lyre
Came gentle airs, such as inspire
Melting love and tender fire.
Farewell, then, heroes! farewell kings |
And mighty numbers, mighty things
Love tunes my heart just to my strings.
Dans un délire extrême
On veut sur ce qu'on aime;
On veut se venger;
On jure de changer;
On devient infidele;
On court de belle en belle;
Mais on revient toujours
A ses premiers amours.
LovE should be like that bird of light
Which floateth still on radiant wings,
A creature glorious, soft, and bright,
Beyond young Thought’s imaginings;
A spirit of the bowers of air,
Which dwells in silent beauty there;
A delicate fair thing; too pure
This world’s cold vapors to endure;
Which far away from shade ind gloom
In sun-bright regions fearl, ss flies
But if on earth-stain soil, its plume
Of paradise declines and dies.
LovE is like the glass That throws its own rich color over all, And makes all beautiful. The morning looks Its very loveliest when the fresh air Hastinged the cheek we love with its glad red; And the hot noon flits by most rapidly When dearest eyes gaze with us on the page Bearing the poet's words of love: and then The twilight walk when the linked arms can feel The beating of the heart: upon the air There is a music never heard but once, A light the eyes can never see again; Each star has its own prophecy of hope, And every song and tale that breathe of love Seein echoes of the heart.
WOMAN'S LOVE. O, the voice of woman's love : What a bosom-stirring word : Was a sweeter ever uttered, Was a dearer ever heard, Than woman’s love?
How it melts upon the ear ! How it nourishes the heart! Cold, ah! cold must his appear That has never shared a part Of woman’s love.
'Tis pleasure to the mourner,
'Tis freedom to the thrall;
The pilgrimage of many,
And the resting-place of all,
Is woman's love.
"Tis the gem of beauty's birth;
It competes with joys above;
What were angela upon earth,
If without woman's love—
Sweet woman’s love 7
Oh! man may bear with suffering: his heart
Is a strong thing, and godlike in the grasp
Of pain that wrings mortality; but tear
One chord affection clings to, part one tie
That binds him unto woman’s delicate love,
And his great spirit yieldeth like a reed.
N. P. WILLIs.
AMoUR toiseul remplis notre ame, toiseul es la source de tous les biens, tant que la vertu s'accorde avec toi. Ah! au’elle soi. oujours ton guide, et que tu sois son consolateur ! Ne vous quittez Jamais, enfans du ciel; marchez ensemble, en vous tenant la main. Si vous rencontrez dans
Oh! have I lived to see thee once again? Breathe the same air f my own, my blessed one !
Look up—look up—these are the arms which sheltered
When the storm howled around; and these the lips
Where, till this hour, the sad and holy kiss
Of parting lingered—as the fragrance left
By angels when they touch the earth and vanish.
Look up.–Night never panted for the sun,
As for thine eyes, my soul |
SIR. E. L. BULwza.
How silver-sweet sound lovers' tongues by night,
Like softest music to attending ears 1 -
It was no fancy, he had named the name
Of love, and at the thought her cheek grew flame :
It was the first time her young ear had heard
A lover’s burning sigh, or silver word:
Her thoughts were all confusion, but most sweet;
Her heart beat high, but pleasant was its beat.
She murmured over many a snatch of song
That might to her own feelings now belong;
She thought upon old histories she had read,
And placed herself in each high heroine’s stead;
Then woke her lute, oh! there is little known
Of music's power till aided by love’s own.
And this is happiness: Oh! love will last
When all that made it happiness is past,-
When all its hopes are as the glittering toys
Tine present offers, time to come destroys,
When they have been too often crushed to earth,
For further blindness to their little worth,
When fond illusions have dropt one by one,
Lik: pearls frown a rich carcanet, till none,
Art left upon life's soiled and naked string,
An this is all what time will ever bring !
Lo t, passionate young Love, how sweet it is
To wave the bosom made a paradise
By hee, life-lighted with thy rainbow smile ! LANDon.
AlAs how light a cause may move
Dissension between hearts that lovel
Hearts that the world in vain had tried
And sorrow but more closely tied ;
That stood the storm when waves were rough,
Yet in a sunny hour fall off,
Like ships that have gone down at sea
When heaven was all tranquillity I
A something light as air—a look,
A word unkind, or wrongly taken,-
Oh! Love that tempests never shook,
A breath, a touch like this hath shaken.
And ruder words will soon rush in
* ~ spread the breach that words begin;
And eyes forget the gentle ray
They wore in courtship's smiling day;
And voices lose the tone that shed
A tenderness round all they said;
Till fast declining, one by one,
The sweetnesses of love are gone;
And hearts so lately mingled seem
Like broken cloud's, or like the stream
That smiling left the mountain’s brow
As though its waters ne'er could sever;
Yet e'er it reach the plain below,
Breaks into floods that part for ever.
e - - - - e
Oh! you who have the charge of Love,
Keep him in rosy bondage bound;
As in the fields of bliss above
He sits with flowerets fettered round.
se not a tie that round him clings;
Nor ever let him use his wings;
For even an hour, a minute’s flight,
Will rob the plumes of half their light.
Like that celestial bird whose nest
Is found beneath far Eastern skies, -
Whose wings, though radiant when at lest,
Lose all their glory when he flies.
OH ! woman, what bliss, what enchantment we owe
To the spell of thy heart, to thy solace below,
To thy truth so enduring, thy kindness and care
In the morning of joy, in the night of despair
To thy soul's chosen love thou unchanged wiit remain
In health and in sickness, in pleasure and pain;
And when closed are his lips in Death's mortal eclipse,
Even then, still is his the last kiss of thy lips 1
And over his grave thou wilt mournfully keep
Thy lone vigil of sorrow, to pray and to weep:
Yes! to pray, that his errors of heart be forgiven,
And that thou may’st yet meet him unsullied in heaven.
IN Eastern lands they talk in flowers,
And they tell in a garland their loves and cares;
Each blossom that blooms in their garden bowers.
On its leaves a mystic language bears.
The rose is the sign of joy and love,
Young blushing love in its earliest dawn;
And the mildness that suits the gentle dove,
From the myrtle's snowy flower is drawn.
Innocence shines in the lily’s bell,
Pure as a heart in its native heaven;
Fame's bright star, and glory's swell,
By the glossy leaf of the bay is given.
The silent, soft, and humble heart
In the violet’s hidden sweetness breathes;
And the tender soul that can not part,
A twine of evergreen fondly wreathes.
The cypress that darkly shadows the grave, Is sorrow that mourns its bitter lot;
And faith that a thousand ills can brave, Speaks in thy blue leaves, forget-me-not.
Then gather a wreath from thy garden bowers,
And tell the wish of thy heart in flowers.
—Still there clings
An earth-stain to the fairest things;
And love, that most delicious gift
Upon life’s shrine of sorrow left,
Has its own share of suffering.
A shade falls from its rudiant wing,
A spot steals o'er its sunny brow,
Fades the rose-lip's witching glow.
*T is well—for earth were too like heaven
If length of life to love were given.
OH ! there are hearts that well may date
The era of their joy from thee,
The birthplace of the brightest fate
That wedded life and love may be;
Hearts that have blessed, that bless thee now,
In memory of their plighted vow.
How long, how fondly, memory dwells
On moments past that led to bliss
Not Time, which breaks all other spells,
E’er broke the heavenly charm of this,
Which falls upon the heart like dew
That decks the faded flower anew.
- JAMEs BIRD.
WHAT is Love Ask him who lives, what is life? ask him who adores, what is God —Thou demandest, what is Love? It is that powerful attraction toward all we con,ceive, or fear, or hope, beyond ourselves, when we find within our own thoughts the chasm of an insufficient void, and seek to awaken in all things that are, a coininunity with what we experience within ourselves. If we reason, we would be understood; if we imagine, we would that the airy children of our own brain were born anew within another’s; if we feel, we would that another’s nerves should vibrate to our own; that the beams of their eyes should kindle at once and melt into our own ; that lips of motionless ice should not reply to lips quivering and burning with the heart’s best blood. This is Love. This is the bone and the sanction which connects not only man with man, but with everything that exists. We are born into the world, and there is something within us which, from the instant that we live, more and more thirsts after its likeness. This propensity develops itself with the developInent of our nature. We dimly see within our intellectual nature a miniature, as it were, of our entire self, yet deprived of all that we condemn or despise: the ideal proto
type of everything excellent and lovely that we are capa.
ble of conceiving as belonging to the nature of man. Not only the portrait of our external being, but an assemblage of the minutest particles of which our nature is composed : a mirror whose surface reflects only the forms of purity and brightness: a soul within our own soul that describes a circle around its proper paradise, which pain, and sorrow, and evil, dare not overleap. To this we eagerly refer all senRations, thirsting that they should resemble and correspond with it. The discovery of its antitype; the meeting with an understanding capable of clearly estimating our own; an imagination which should enter into and scize upon the subtle and delicate peculiarities which we have delighted to cherish and unfold in secret; with a frame whose nerves, rike the chords of two exquisite lyres strung to the accompaniment of one delightful voice, vibrate with the vibrations of our own ; and a combination of all these in such proportion as the type within deinands: this is the invisible and unattainable point to which Love tends, and to attain which it urges forth the powers of men to arrest the saintest shadow of that without the possession of which there is to rest nor respite to the heart over which it rules. Hence in solitude, or that deserted state when we are surrounded by human beings, and yet they sympathise not with us, – we love the flowers, the grass, the waters, and the sky. In the motion of the very leaves of spring, in the blue air, there is then found a secret correspondence with our heart. There is eloquence in the tongueless wind, and a melody in the flowing brooks and the rustling of the reeds beside them, which, by their inconceivable relation to something within the soul, awakens the spirit to breathless rapture, and brings tears of mysterious tenderness to the eyes, like the enthusiasm of patriotic success, or the voice of one beloved singing to you alone. Sterne says that if he were in a desert, he would love some cypress. So soon as this want or power is dead, man becomes a living sepulchre of himself, and what yet survives is the mere husk of what once he was. SHELLEY.
LovE can not bear rude passion’s blast; Neglect pales all its fires.
When once its brilliancy is past,
Its struggles, but it can not last;
It flickers and expires.
And who that radiant light can blame If quickly it depart 1
So delicate, so pure a flame,
Which from ethereal regions came,
Must live in kindred heart.
Is it a crime in yon sweet flower,
The child of lovelier skies,
Because exposed in killing hour
To blighting winds, to tempest's power, It sickens, fades, and dies 7
ERE the tongue Can utter, or the eye a wo reveal, Her smile is round us, like a guardian spell Which nothing scatters, save the tyrant gloom Of death ; and them, whose unforsaken glance Till the last hue of being fade, from dawn To midnight keeps angelic watch beside The ebbing spirit, lighting it to heaven. 'Tis action makes the world of man: but life Is feeling, such as gentle woman bears: The fairy people of her inward world Are true affections; when the blight hath touched Or wronged their beauty, darkly cold this earth Becomes; the elements of being fade, And silence is the sepulchre of thought, Wherein the anguish of her spirit dwells.
If music be the food of love, play on 1 Give me excess of it; that, surfeiting, The appetite may sicken, and so die.— That strain again! — it had a dying fall:
Hold there a moment, Love replied,
Nor boast dominion quite so wide.
Is there no province to invade
But that by Love and meekness swayed 7
All other empire I resign;
But be the sphere of beauty mine.
For in the downy lawn of rest
That opens on a woman’s breast,
Attended by my peaceful train,
I choose to love, and choose to reign.
Far-sighted Faith I bring along,
And Truth, above an army strong,
And Chastity, of icy mould,
Within the burning tropics cold :
And Lowliness, to whose mild brow
The power and pride of nations bow;
And Modesty, with downca t eye,
That lends the morn her virgin die;
And Innocence, arrayed in light,
And Honor, as a tower upright;
With sweetly winning graces, more
Than poets ever dreamt of yore;
In unaffected conduct free,
All smiling sisters, three times three;
And rosy Peace, the cherub blest,
That nightly sings us all to rest.
Hence, from the bud of nature's prime,
From the first step of infant time,
Woman, the world's appointed light,
His skirted every shade with white;
Has stood for imitation high,
To everv heart and every eve:
From ancient deeds of fair renown
Hasbrought her bright memorials down,
To time affixed perpetual youth,
And formed each tale of love and truth,
Upon a new Promethean plan
She moulds the essence of a man,
Tempers his mass, his genius fires,
And, as a better soul, inspires.
The rude she softens, warms the cold,
Exalts the meek, and checks the bold,
Calls Sloth from his supine repose,
Within the coward’s bosom glows,
Of pride unplumes the lofty crest,
Bids bashful merit stand confest,
And, like coarse metal from the mines,
Collects, irradiates, and refines.
The gentle science she imparts,
All manners smooths, informs all hearts,
From her sweet influence are felt
Passions that please and thoughts that melt;
To stormy rage she bids control,
And sinks serenely on the soul,
Softens Deucalion's flinty race,
And tunes the warring world to peace.
Thus armed 'gainst all that’s light and vain,
And freed from thy fantastic chain,
She fills the sphere by Heaven assigned,
And ruled by me, o'errules mankind:
Love’s eye should but answer the beam that invites it, The glance that tells secrets true heart never won,
The delicate mind veils the hope that requites it, Lest it die, like the fire when exposed to the sun.
Dear woman’s the exquisite magnet of nature,
And love is the heart-thrilling homage we pay;
But Beauty has not a more delicate feature,
Than the caution that Love should, if grateful display
That name to the heart which sweet transport discloses
Too sacred should be for a toast or a tale;
And the breathings of Love, like the perfumes of roses,
Are exquisite death when surcharging the gale.
LEAve me not yet! through rosy skies from far,
But now the song-birds to their nests return;
The quivering image of the first pale siar
On the dim lake scarce yet begins to burn:
Leave me not yet!
Not yet ! Oh, hark low tones from hidden streams Piercing the shivery leaves e'en now arise; Their voices mingle not with day-light dreams— They are of vesper’s hymns and harmonies: Leave me not yet!
My thoughts are like those gentle sounds, dear love,
By day shut up in their own still recess;
They wait for dews on earth, for stars above,
Then to breathe out their soul of tenderness.
Leave me not yet !
*TIs something if in absence we can trace
The footsteps of the past : it sooths the heart
To breathe the air scented in other years
By lips beloved, to wander through the groves
Where once we were not lonely; where the rose
Reminds us of the hair we used to wreath
With its fresh buds—where every hill and vale,
And wood and fountain, speak of time gone by,
And Hope springs up in joy from Memory's ashes.