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From a periodical entitled The Irish Penny Journal we extract a poem which has strangely taken our fancy. What are its peculiar merits we should find it difficult to say; but there is something in the novelty of the subject, and the earnest handling of it, calculated both to surprise and please. He who reads it once will be pretty sure to peruse it again.

"Contarini Fleming wrote merely, TIME."

Disraeli the Younger.

THE Solemn Shadow that bears in his hands
The conquering scythe and the glass of sands,
Paused once on his flight where the sunrise shone
On a warlike city's towers of stone;

And he ask'd of a panoplied soldier near,

"How long has this fortress'd city been here?"
And the man look'd up, man's pride on his brow-
"The city stands here from the ages of old;
And as it was then, and as it is now,

So will it endure till the funeral knell
Of the world be knoll'd,

As Eternity's annals shall tell.”

And after a thousand years were o'er,
The Shadow paused over the spot once more.

And vestige of none of a city lay there,
But lakes lay blue, and plains lay bare,

And the marshall'd corn stood high and pale,

And a shepherd piped of love in a vale.

"How!" spake the Shadow, "can temple and tower Thus fleet, like mist from the morning hour?"

But the shepherd shook the long locks from his brow"The world is fill'd with sheep and corn;

Thus was it of old, thus is it now,

Thus, too, will it be while moon and sun

Rule night and morn,

For Nature and Life are one."

And after a thousand years were o'er,

The Shadow paused over the spot once more.

And lo! in the room of the meadow-lands

A sea foam'd far over saffron sands,

And flash'd in the noontide bright and dark,
And a fisher was casting his nets from a bark;

How marvell'd the Shadow! “Where then is the plain ?
And where be the acres of golden grain ?"

But the fisher dash'd off the salt spray from his brow-
"The waters begirdle the earth alway,
The sea ever roll'd as it rolleth now:

What babblest thou about grain and fields ?
By night and day

Man looks for what Ocean yields."

And after a thousand years were o'er

The Shadow paused over the spot once more.

And the ruddy rays of the eventide
Were gilding the skirts of a forest wide;
The moss of the trees look'd old, so old!
And valley and hill, the ancient mould,
Was robed in sward, an evergreen cloak;
And a woodman sang as he fell'd
an oak.
Him ask'd the Shadow-"Rememberest thou
Any trace of a sea where wave those trees?"
But the woodman laugh'd: said he, "I trow,
If oaks and pines do flourish and fall,

It is not amid seas ;

The earth is one forest all."

And after a thousand years were o'er,

The Shadow paused over the spot once more.

And what saw the Shadow? A city again,

But peopled by pale mechanical men,

With workhouses fill'd, and prisons, and marts,

And faces that spake exanimate hearts.


Strange pictures and sad!" was the Shadow's thought;

And turning to one of the Ghastly, he sought

For a clue in words to the When and the How

Of the ominous change he now beheld; But the man uplifted his care-worn brow

"Change? What was life ever but conflict and change? From the ages of old

Hath affliction been widening its range."

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Enough!" said the Shadow, and pass'd from the spot :"At last it is vanish'd, the beautiful youth

Of the earth, to return with no to-morrow;
All changes have chequer'd mortality's lot;
But this is the darkest-for knowledge and truth
Are but golden gates to the temple of sorrow! "


This is one of the many beautiful compositions of Mrs. HEMANS, whose poetry has this remarkable character, that, beautiful as it is in portions, it will not bear to be read continuously in a volume. Perhaps this is the consequence of the perfection of its mechanism, for in rhythm and rhyme-in the music of verse-she is unrivalled. Pleasing at first, this unbroken smoothness palls by repetition and becomes monotony. Nevertheless, many of her minor poems are full of the truest poetry of thought, and the strain is in exquisite harmony with the sentiment. Such a poem is the following.

HUSH! 'tis a holy hour-the quiet room

Seems like a temple, while yon soft lamp sheds A faint and starry radiance through the gloom

And the sweet stillness, down on bright young heads,
With all their clustering locks, untouch'd by care,
And bow'd, as flowers are bow'd at night, in prayer.

Gaze on,-'tis lovely!-childhood's lip and cheek,
Mantling beneath its earnest brow of thought-
Gaze-yet what seest thou in those fair, and meek,
And fragile things, as but for sunshine wrought?
Thou seest what grief must nurture for the sky,
What Death must fashion for eternity!

Oh! joyous creatures, that will sink to rest

Lightly, when those pure orisons are done,
As buds with slumber's honey-dew oppress'd,
'Midst the dim folded leaves at set of sun-
Lift up your hearts! though yet no sorrow lies
Dark in the summer heaven of those clear eyes.

Though fresh within your breasts th' untroubled springs
Of hope make melody where'er ye tread;

And o'er your sleep bright shadows, from the wings
Of spirits visiting but youth, be spread;
Yet in those flute-like voices, mingling low,
Is woman tenderness-how soon her woe!

Her lot is on you-silent tears to weep,

And patient smiles to wear through suffering's hour,
And sunless riches, from affections deep,

To pour on broken reeds a wasted shower;
And to make idols, and to find them clay,
And to bewail that worship—therefore pray!

Her lot is on you-to be found untired,

Watching the stars out by the bed of pain,
With a pale cheek, and yet a brow inspired,
And a true heart of hope, though hope be vain—
Meekly to bear with wrong, to cheer decay,
And oh ! to love through all things-therefore pray!

And take the thought of this calm vesper time,
With its low murmuring sounds of silvery light,
On through the dark days fading from their prime,
As a sweet dew to keep your souls from blight.
Earth will forsake-oh! happy to have given
The unbroken heart's first fragrance unto Heaven.



EDGAR ALLAN POE, an American, is the author of this fanciful lyric, which is thoroughly original in its structure, turn of thought and expression-a sportive and almost careless composition, but a flash of true genius.

Ir was many and many a year ago,

In a kingdom by the sea,

That a maiden there lived whom you may know
By the name of Annabel Lee;

And this maiden she lived with no other thought
Than to love and be loved by me.

I was a child and she was a child,

In this kingdom by the sea:

But we loved with a love that was more than love-
I and my Annabel Lee-

With a love that the winged seraphs of heaven
Coveted her and me.

And this was the reason that, long ago,
In this kingdom by the sea,
A wind blew out of a cloud, chilling
My beautiful Annabel Lee;
So that her high-born kinsman came,
And bore her away
from me,

To shut her up in a sepulchre

In this kingdom by the sea.

The angels, not half so happy in heaven,
Went envying her and me--

Yes! that was the reason (as all men know,
In this kingdom by the sea)

That the wind came out of the cloud by night,
Chilling and killing my Annabel Lee.

But our love it was stronger by far than the love
Of those who were older than we-

Of many far wiser than we

And neither the angels in heaven above,
Nor the demons down under the sea,
Can ever dissever my soul from the soul
Of the beautiful Annabel Lee.

For the moon never beams without bringing me dreams
Of the beautiful Annabel Lee;

And the stars never rise, but I feel the bright eyes
Of the beautiful Annabel Lee;

And so all the night-tide, I lie down by the side
Of my darling-my darling-my life and my bride,
In the sepulchre there by the sea,
In her tomb by the sounding sea.


Under this title we purpose to string together short passages of peculiar beauty, scattered among the larger productions of the poets. Where italic is used it is with intent to direct the particular attention of the reader to some fine thought for which it is remarkable.


On his shoulders Night

Throwing his ebon mantle rent with storms

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