« FöregåendeFortsätt »
It spoke, and where Rome's Purple Ones reposed,
They lower'd the corpse; and downwards from the sun
Both Soul and Body sunk--and Darkness closed
Över that twofold one!
Without the church, unburied on the ground,
There lay, in rags, a Beggar newly dead:
Above the dust no holy priest was found—
No pious prayer was said!
But round the corpse unnumber'd lovely things
Hovering, unseen by the proud passers-by,
Form'd upward, upward, upward, with bright wings,
A ladder to the sky!
"And what are ye, O Beautiful ?”
Answer'd the choral cherubim, "His DEEDS!"
Then his Soul, sparkling sudden as a star,
Flash'd from its mortal weeds;
And lightly passing, tier on tier, along
The gradual pinions, vanish'd like a smile! Just then, swept by the solemn-visaged throng From the Apostle's pile
"Knew ye this beggar?" "Knew-a wretch, who died
Under the curse of our good Pope, now gone!"
"Loved ye that Pope?" "He was our Church's pride,
And Rome's most Holy Son!"
Then did I muse:-
:-Such are men's judgments-blind
In scorn or love! In what unguesst-of things-
DESIRES OF DEEDS-do rags and purple find
The fetters or the wings!
By the Rev. ROBERT MONTGOMERY.
AN Atheist-he hath never faced an hour,
And not belied the name he bore. His doubt
Is darkness from the unbelieving Will
Begot, and oft a parasite to sin
Too dear to be deserted,- for the truth
That unveils Heaven and her immortal thrones,
Uncovers Hell, and awful duties too!
Meanwhile I flatter the surpassing fool;
And hear him challenge God to bare his brow,
Unsphere some orb, and show Him all sublimé.
He challenge heaven !-an atom against worlds !
Why, Angels and Archangels, who have sat
Within the shadow of His
throne, and felt
The beams of an emitted glory burn
Around them, cannot comprehend His might,
Nor fathom His perfections :—what is Man!
If Nature fail, then Reason may despair;
The Universe is stamp'd with God; who sees
Creation, and can no Creator view,--
To him Philosophy shall preach in vain :
A blinded nature and a blasted mind
Are his; Eternity shall teach the rest !
Yet, who the summer, that bright and season-queen,
Hath hail’d, beheld the march of midnight worlds,
The Sun in glory, or bis skiey realm,
When thunder-demons are abroad again,
And riding on the chariot-roll of clouds
Who that hath seen the ocean-terrors swell,
Or moonshine rippling o'er the rocking waves
In smiles of beauty,--all this living might,
And motion, grace, and majesty of things,
Nor caught some impulse that believing hearts
Might share, and crown it with a creed sublime ?
A very powerful composition by Eliza Cook,
MINE is the fame most blazon'd of all,
Mine is the goodliest trade :
Never was banner so wide as the pall,
Nor sceptre so fear'd as the spade !
This is the lay of the Sexton gray,
King of the churchyard he;
While the mournful knell of the tolling bell
Chimes in with his burden of glee.
He dons a doublet of sober brown,
And a hat of slouching felt;
The mattock is over his shoulder thrown,
The heavy keys clank at his belt.
The dark damp vault now echoes his tread,
While his song rings merrily out,
With a cobweb canopy over his head,
And coffins falling about.
His foot may crush the well-fed worms,
His hand may grasp a shroud,
His gaze may rest on skeleton forms,
Yet his tones are light and loud.
He digs the grave, and his chime will break
As he gains a fathom deep:
Whoever lies in the bed I make,
I warrant will soundly sleep!
He piles the sod, he raises the stone,
He clips the cypress tree;,
But whatever his task, 'tis plied alone,
No fellowship holds he.
For the Sexton gray is a scaring loon,
His name is link'd with death;
The children at play, should he cross their way,
Will pause with fluttering breath. They herd together, a frighten'd host,
And whisper, with lips all white, See, see, 'tis he that sends the ghost
To walk the world at night!
The old men mark him, with fear in their eye,
At his labour mid skulls and dust;
They hear him chant--The young may die,
But we know that the aged must.
The rich will frown as his ditty goes on
Though broad your lands may be, Six narrow feet to the beggar I mete, And the same shall serve for ye!
The ear of the strong will turn from his song, And beauty's cheek will pale,
Out, out (cry they), what creature would stay
To list thy croaking tale?
Oh, the Sexton gray is a mortal of dread,
None like to see him come near:
The orphan thinks of a father dead,
The widow wipes a tear.
All shudder to hear his bright axe chink,
Upturning the hollow bone,
No mate will share his toil or his fare,
He works, he carouses, alone.
By night or by day this, this is his lay:
Mine is the goodliest trade;
Never was banner so wide as the pall,
Nor sceptre so fear'd as the spade!
THE LILY OF HEAVEN.
By DR. T. H. CHIVERS, a poet of America
Now in her snow-white shroud she lies-
(Her lily lids half veil her eyes)—
As if she look'd with wild surprise
Up at her soul in Paradise.
Her hands lie folded on her breast-
Cross'd like the Cross that gave her rest;
She looks as if some heavenly guest
Had told her that her soul was blest.
She lies as if she seem'd to hear
Sphere-music breaking on her ear-
Breaking in accents silver-clear-
In concert with her soul up there.
Her body was the Temple bright
In which her soul dwelt full of light,
Triumphing over Death's dark night—
High Heaven laid open to the sight.
Burning with pure seraphic love,
Veil'd in the meekness of the dove-
Her soul, now all things past to prove,
Looks down on me from Heaven above.
For her Religion grew more bright,
The darker grew the world's dark night--
Filling her soul with such pure light,
High heaven seem'd open'd to her sight.
The calmness of divinest ease
Rests on her brow-upon her face-
Expressive of her soul's release
From this dark world to one of peace.
Her pale, cold, silent lips, compresst,
Speak out to me, most manifest,
A silent language, of the rest
That she now feels among the blest.
I wept warm tears upon her face,
As she lay there in Death's embrace;
Whereon no passion could we trace—
But calmness--meekness--heavenly grace.
With saintly, pale face thus she went
Out of this world's great discontent,
Up through the starry firmament,
Into the Place of Pure Content.
THE PRAYER OF FESTUS.
Extracted from P. J. BAILEY'S inagnificent poem Festus. GRANT us, O God! that in thy holy love The universal people of the world May grow more great and happy every day; Mightier, wiser, humbler, too, towards Thee. And that all ranks, all classes, callings, states Of life, so far as such seem right to Thee, May mingle into one like sister trees,