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Beachy's head, shiver Deal into splinters, and knock the two Reculver steeples into one. His Highness, it is true, contemplated a bellicose state, ceremoniously proclaimed according to the usage of polite nations: but suppose some outlandish savage, as uncivilized as unshorn, say from Terra del Fuego, animated with an insane hostility to England, and burning to test his skill in Pyrotechnics—might not such a barbarian be tempted to dispense with a formal declaration of war, and make a few experimental essays how to introduce his treacherous combustibles into our perfidious towns and hamlets 2 Foreign incendiaries for me, rather than native; and accident or Spontaneous Combustion before either l But if we must believe in it home-made— surely, in preference to the industrious laborer, suspicion should fall on those sturdy trampers that infest the country, the foremost to crave for food and money, the last to ask for work, and one of whom might light up a dozen parishes. If it be otherwise, if a class eminently loyal, patient, peaceable, and rational, have really become such madmen throwing about fire, it is high time, methinks, with universal Artesian borings, to begin to scuttle our island for fear of its being burnt. But no—that Shadow of an Incendiary, with uplifted hands, and streaming repentant eyes, disavows with earnest gesture the foul intent; and shadow as he is, my belief acquits him, and makes me echo the imaginary sigh with which he fades again into the foggy distance between me and Port Sydney. It is in your power, Sir James Graham 1 to lay the Ghost that is haunting me. But that is a trifle. By a due intercession with the earthly Fountain of Mercy, you may convert a melancholy Shadow into a happier Reality—a righted man—a much pleasanter image to mingle in our waking visions, as well as in those dreams which, as Hamlet conjectures, may soothe or disturb us in our coffins. Think, Sir, of poor Gifford White—inquire into his hard case, and give it your humane consideration, as that of a fellow-man with an immortal soul—a “possible angel”—to be met hereafter face to face. To me, should this appeal meet with any success, it will be one of the dearest deeds of my pen. I shall not repent a wide deviation from my usual course; or begrudge the pain and trouble caused me by the providential visitings of an importunate Phantom. In any case, my own responsibility is at an end. I have relieved my heart, appeased my conscience, and absolved my soul.

SONNET.

TO MY WIFE.

THINK, sweetest, if my lids are now not wet,
The tenderest tears lie ready at the brim,
To see thine own dear eyes—so pale and dim-
Touching my soul with full and fond regret,
For on thy ease my heart's whole care is set;
Seeing I love thee in no passionate whim,
Whose summer dates but with the rose's trim,
Which one hot June can perish and beget,
Ah no, I chose thee for affection's pet,
For unworn love, and constant cherishing—
To smile but to thy smile—or else to fret
When thou art fretted—rather than to sing
Elsewhere, alas! I ought to soothe and kiss
Thy dear pale cheek, while I assure thee this!

THE MARY.

A SEA-SIDE SKETCH.

Low'st thou not, Alice, with the early tide
To see the hardy Fisher hoist his mast,
And stretch his sail towards the ocean wide,-
Like God's own beadsman going forth to cast
IIis net into the deep, which doth provide
Enormous bounties, hidden in its vast
Dosom like Charity's, for all who seek
And take its gracious boon thankful and meek?

The sea is bright with morning, but the dark
Seems still to linger on his broad black sail,
For it is early hoisted, like a mark
For the low sun to shoot at with his pale
And level beams:—All round the shadowy bark
The green wave glimmers, and the gentle gale
Swells in her canvas, till the waters show
The keel's new speed, and whiten at the bow.

Then look abaft—(for thou canst understand
That phrase)—and there he sitteth at the stern,
Grasping the tiller in his broad brown hand,
The hardy Fisherman. Thou may’st discern
Ten fathoms off the wrinkles in the tann'd
And honest countenance that he will turn
To look upon us, with a quiet gaze—
As we are passing on our several ways.

So, some ten days ago, on such a morn,
The Mary, like a seamew, sought her spoil

Amongst the finny race: 't was when the corn
Wood the sharp sickle, and the golden toil

Summon'd all rustic hands to fill the horn
Of Ceres to the brim, that brave turmoil

Was at the prime, and Woodgate went to reap

His harvest too, upon the broad blue deep.

His mast was up, his anchor heaved aboard,
His mainsail stretching in the first gray gleams
Of morning, for the wind. Ben's eye was stored
With fishes—fishes swam in all his dreams,
And all the goodly east seem'd but a hoard
Of silvery fishes, that in shoals and streams
Groped into the deep dusk that fill'd the sky,
For him to catch in meshes of his eye.

For Ben had the true sailor's sanguine heart,
And saw the future with a boy's brave thought,
No doubts, nor faint misgivings had a part
In his bright visions—ay, before he caught
His fish, he sold them in the scaly mart,
And summ'd the net proceeds. This should have
brought
Despair upon him when his hopes were foil'd,
But though one crop was marr'd, again he toil'd

And sow'd his seed afresh.-Many foul blights
Perish’d his hard-won gains—yet he had plann’d
No schemes of too extravagant delights—
No goodly houses on the Goodwin sand—
But a small humble home, and loving nights,
Such as his honest heart and earnest hand
Might fairly purchase. Where these hopes too airy?
Such as they were, they rested on thee, Mary.

She was the prize of many a toilsome year,
And hard-won wages, on the perilous sea—

Of savings ever since the shipboy's tear
Was shed for home, that lay beyond the lee;—
She was purveyor for his other dear
Mary, and for the infant yet to be
Fruit of their married loves. These made him dot,
Upon the homely beauties of his boat,

Whose pitch black hull roll'd darkly on the wave
No gayer than one single stripe of blue
Could make her swarthy sides. She seem’d a slave,
A negro among boats—that only knew
Hardship and rugged toil—no pennons brave
Flaunted upon the mast—but oft a few
Dark dripping jackets flutter'd to the air,
Ensigns of hardihood and toilsome care.

And when she ventured for the deep, she spread
A tawny sail against the sunbright sky,
Dark as a cloud that journeys overhead—
But then those tawny wings were stretch'd to fly
Across the wide sea desert for the bread
Of babes and mothers—many an anxious eye
Dwelt on her course, and many a fervent pray’r
Invoked the Heavens to protect and spare.

Where is she now? The secrets of the deep
Are dark and hidden from the human ken;
Only the sea-bird saw the surges sweep
Over the bark of the devoted Ben,
Meanwhile a widow sobs and orphans weep,
And sighs are heard from weather-beaten men,
Dark, sunburnt men, uncouth, and rude, and hairy,
While loungers idly ask, “Where is the Mary?”

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