Page images
[graphic][merged small]


THE LAKE OF THE DISMAL SWAMP. DHEY made her a grave too cold and And near him the she-wolf stirred the brake, damp

And the coppersnake breathed in his ear, For a soul so warm and true;

Till he starting, cried, from his dream awake,
And she's gone to the Lake of the Dismal “Oh, when shall I see the dusky lake,

And the white canoe of my dear ?"
Where, all night long, by a fire-fly lamp,
She paddles her white canoe.

He saw the lake, and a meteor bright

Quick over its surface played; “ And her fire-fly lamp I soon shall see, “Welcome,” he said, “my dear one's light!" And her paddle I soon shall hear;

And the dim shore echoed for many a night Long and loving our life shall be,

The name of the death-cold maid. And I'll hide the maid in a cypress tree, When the footstep of Death is near.” Till he hollowed a boat of the birchen bark

Which carried him off from the shore; Away to the Dismal Swamp he speeds ; Far, far he followed the meteor spark; His path was rugged and sore,

The winds were high, and the clouds were Through tangled juniper, beds of reeds,

dark, Through many a fen where the serpent feeds,

And the boat returned no more. And man never trod before.

But oft from the Indian hunter's camp, And, when on earth he sunk to sleep,

This lover and maid so true
If slumber his eyelids knew,

Are seen at the hour of midnight damp
He lay where the deadly vine doth weep To cross the lake by a fire-fly lamp,
Its venomous tear, and nightly steep

And paddle their white canoe.
The flesh with blistering dew.


PROPOSAL. DHE violet loves a sunny bank,

The west winds kiss the clover blooms, The cowslip loves the lea,

But I kiss thee.
The scarlet creeper loves the elm,
And I love thee.

The oriole weds his mottled mate,

The lily's bride o' the bee, The sunshine kisses mount and vale,

Heaven's marriage ring is round the earth. The stars they kiss the sea,

Shall I wed thee?


[graphic][merged small]
[blocks in formation]

'Twas partly Love and partly Fear,

THE POET'S SONG TO HIS WIFE. And partly 'twas a bashful art,

OW many summers, love, That I might rather feel than see

Have I been thine ? The swelling of her heart.

How many days, love, I calmed her fears, and she was calm,

Hast thou been mine? And told her love with virgin pride,

Time, like the winged wind And so I won my Genevieve,

When 't bends the flowers, My bright and beauteous bride.

Hath left no mark behind,

To count the hours !

Some weight of thought, though loth,

On thee he leaves;
Some lines of care round both

Perhaps he weaves ;
Some fears; a soft regret

For joys scarce known;
Sweet looks we half forget;

All else is flown!


Ah! with what thankless heart

I mourn and sing !
Look, where our children start,

Like sudden spring!
With tongues all sweet and low,

Like a pleasant rhyme,
They tell how much I owe
To thee and Time!


(Barry Cornwall.)


A PETITION TO TIME. Poucit us gently, Time!

Let us glide adown the stream
Gently, as we sometimes glide

Through a quiet dream!
Humble voyagers are we,
Husband, wife, and children three ;
(One is lost-an angel, fled
To the azure overhead!)
Touch us gently, Time!

We've not proud nor soaring wings;
Our ambition, our content,

Lies in simple things.
Humble voyagers are we
O'er life's dim, unsounded sea,
Seeking only some calm clime;
Touch us gently, gentle Time!


(Barry Cornwall.)

SONNET. (It is said that soon after the death of Longfellow, io 1882, the following tribute to his wife, which was written in July, 1879, was found in his portfolio. The lines were not, we believe, made public until very recently.) IN the long, sleepless watches of the night, f A gentle face—the face of one long deadLooks at me from the wall, where round its

The night lamp casts a halo of pale light.
Here in this room she died, and soul more

Never through martyrdom of fire was led
To its repose; nor can in books be read
The legend of a life more benedight.
There is a mountain in the distant west
That, sun-defying, in its deep ravines
Displays a cross of snow upon its side.
Such is the cross I wear upon my breast
These eighteen years, through all the chang-

ing scenes
And seasons, changeless since the day she



[graphic][merged small]

EPITHALAMIUM. SAW two clouds at morning

In peace each other greeting; Tinged by the rising sun,

Calm was their course through banks of green, And in the dawn they floated on,

While dimpling eddies played between.
And mingled into one ;
I thought that morning cloud was blessed,

Such be your gentle motion,
It moved so sweetly to the west.

Till life's last pulse shall beat;

Like summer's beam, and summer's stream, I saw two summer currents

Float on, in joy, to meet Flow smoothly to their meeting,

A calmer sca, where storms shall cease, And join their course, with silent force,

A purer sky, where all is peace.


« PreviousContinue »