« PreviousContinue »
The gentle girl, that bowed her fair young
When thou wert gone, in silent sorrow dying.
Brother! true friend! the tender and the brave!
She pined to share thy grave.
Fame was thy gift from others - but for her,
To whom the wide earth held that only spot,
She loved thee !— lovely in your lives ye were,
And in your early deaths divided not !
Thou hast thine oak—thy trophy,— what hath she?
Her own blest place by thee!
It was thy spirit, brother! which had made
The bright world glorious to her thoughtful eye,
Since first in childhood 'midst the vines ye played,
And sent glad singing through the free blue sky!
Ye were but two!--and when that spirit passed,
Woe for the one, - the last!
Woe, yet not long !--She lingered but to trace
Thine image from the image in her breast;
Once, once again to see that buried face
But smile upon her, ere she went to rest!
Too sad a smile !- its living light was o'er,
It answered hers no more!
The earth grew silent when thy voice departed,
The home too lonely whence thy step had fled ;
What then was left for her, the faithful-hearted ?
Death, death, to still the yearning for the dead !
Softly she perished — be the flower deplored
Here, with the Lyre and Sword !
Have ye not met ere now?-So let those trust
That meet for moments but to part for years;
That weep, watch, pray, to hold back dust from dust,
That love where love is but a fount of tears!
Brother! sweet sister!- peace around
dwell! Lyre, Sword, and Flower, farewell! Literary Souvenir.
No more of talk, where God or angel guest
With man, as with his friend, familiar used
To sit indulgent, and with him partake
Are ye for ever to your skies departed ?
Oh! will ye visit this dim world no more?
Ye whose bright wings a seldom splendour darted
Through Eden's fresh and flowering shades of yore?
Now are the fountains dried on that sweet spot,
And ye- our faded earth beholds
Yet, by your shining eyes not all forsaken,
Man wandered from his Paradise away; Ye, from forgetfulness his heart to waken,
Came down, high guests ! in many a later day, And with the Patriarchs under vine or oak, Midst noontide calm or hush of evening spoke.
From you, the veil of midnight darkness rending,
Came the rich mysteries to the sleeper's eye, That saw your hosts ascending and descending,
On those bright steps between the earth and sky: Trembling he woke, and bowed o'er glory's trace, And worshipped, awe-struck, in that fearful place.
By Chebar's Brook ye passed, such radiance wearing
As mortal vision might but ill endure ; Along the stream the living chariot bearing,
With its high crystal arch, intensely pure ! And the dread rushing of your wings that hour, Was like the noise of waters in their power.
But in the Olive-mount, by night appearing,
Midst the dim leaves, your holiest work was done !
Whose was the voice that came, divinely cheering,
Fraught with the breath of God to aid his Son ?-
Haply of those that on the moonlit plains
Wafted good tidings unto Syrian swains.
Yet one more task was yours !- your heavenly dwelling
Ye left, and by the’ unsealed sepulchral stone
In glorious raiment sat; the weepers telling,
That He they sought had triumphed, and was gone!
Now have ye left us for the brighter shore,
Your presence lights the lonely groves no more!
But may ye not, unseen, around us hover,
With gentle promptings and sweet influence yet?
Though the fresh glory of those days be over,
When, midst the palm-trees, man your footsteps met?
Are not near when Faith and Hope rise high,
When love, by strength, o'ermasters agony ?
Are ye not near, when sorrow unrepining,
Yields up life's treasures unto Him who gave ?
When martyrs, all things for His sake resigning,
Lead on the march of death, serenely brave?
Dreams !- but a deeper thought our souls may fill —
One, one is near-a spirit holier still !
The tale I tell was told me long ago ;
Yet mirthful ones, since heard, have passed away,
While this still wakens memory's fondest glow,
And feelings fresh as those of yesterday:
’T was told me by a man whose hairs were grey,
Whose brow bore token of the lapse of years,
Yet o'er his heart affection's gentle sway
Maintained that lingering spell which age endears, And while he told his tale his eyes were dim with tears.
But not with tears of sorrow;
Is often wet with joy and gratitude ;
And well his faltering voice, and tear, and sigh,
Declared a heart by thankfulness subdued :
Brief feelings of regret might there intrude,
Like clouds which shade awhile the moon's fair light;
But meek submission soon her power renewed,
And patient smiles, by tears but made more bright, Confessed that God's decree was wise, and good and right.
It was a winter's evening ;-clear, but still:
Bright was the fire, and bright the silvery beam
Of the fair moon shone on the window-sill
And parlour floor ;-- the softly mingled gleam
Of fire and moonlight suited well a theme
Of pensive converse, unallied to gloom;
Ours varied like the subjects of a dream;
And turned, at last, upon the silent tomb,
Earth's goal for hoary age, and beauty's smiling bloom.
We talked of life's last hour,— the varied forms
And features it assumes ;- how some men die,
As sets the sun when dark clouds threaten storms
And starless night; others whose evening sky
Resembles those which to the outward eye
Seem full of promise :—and with softened tone,
At seasons checked by no ungrateful sigh,
The death of one sweet grandchild of his own
Was by that hoary man most tenderly made known.
She was, he said, a fair and lovely child
As ever parent could desire to see,
Or seeing, fondly love ; of manners mild,
Affections gentle,- even in her glee,
Her very mirth from levity was free;
But her more common mood of mind was one
Thoughtful beyond her early age, for she
In ten brief years her little course had run,-
Many more brief have known, but brighter surely none.
Though some might deem her pensive, if not sad;
Yet those who knew her better, best could tell
How calmly happy, and how meekly glad
Her quiet heart in its own depths did dwell :
Like to the waters of some crystal well,
In which the stars of heaven at noon are seen,
Fancy might deem on her young spirit fell
Glimpses of light more glorious and serene
Than that of life's brief day, so heavenly was her mien.
But, though no boisterous playmate, her fond smile
Had sweetness in it passing that of mirth;
Loving and kind, her thoughts, words, deeds, the while
Betrayed of childish sympathies no dearth :
She loved the wild flowers scattered over earth,
Bright insects sporting in the light of day,
Blithe songsters giving joyous music birth
In groves impervious to the noontide ray ;-
All these she loved as much as those who seemed more gay.
Yet more she loved the word, the smile, she look,
Of those who reared her with religious care ;
With fearful joy she conned that holy Book,
At whose unfolded page full many a prayer,
In which her weal immortal had its share,