Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB

serable night," she replied, “in con- traordinary adventures which bad sequence of an appalling incident crowded upon me in such rapid sucwhich occurred last night in your im- cession. I enjoyed the heartfelt gratimediate vicinity. Soon after you left fication to see my efforts crowned with us, four nuns from the convent of St. success. The pale and care-worn feaClara, called upon me on their way tures of my aunt and cousin relaxed to chant a midnight requiem over the into frequent smiles as I pursued my dear remains of my blessed sister, and strange narrative, and the ludicrous requested me to accompany them on a climax of my adventure with the two harp, which is usually left for this gardeners created even a hearty laugh purpose in the sepulchre. As I have at my expense. When I had concludfound a melancholy gratification in ed, the lovely Julia repaired the awthis solemn service, which the nuns ful damage inflicted on my dressingperform twice every week, when their gown, and my aunt made me a present convent duties permit, I did not allow of the formidable portrait of the hapthe still distant storm, nor the cool less Leah ; the removal of which, she white gown which had replaced my said, would alone convince the villahot mourning dress, to deter me from gers that the unhappy original no an act of duty to the dear departed longer walked the castle at midnight. one. I accompanied the nuns to the During a few weeks of delightful sepulchre, and, after they had sung intercourse with these intelligent and the requiem, I was kneeling in silent amiable women, I greatly recruited prayer against the sarcophagus, when my injured constitution, and at length suddenly, the brazen gates of the succeeded in my earnest endeavors to vault were shaken with a giant's prevail upon my aunt and her daughter grasp

-I beheld the figure of a co to quit for some months an abode lossal woman in white garments on the fraught with melancholy associations, outside—and a voice sbrieked “Ce- and to pass the autumn and winter cilia ! Cecilia !” in tones so wild and under my mother's roof in Berlin. unearthly, that the nuns in terror There I had the delight to see their dropped their tapers, and we fled into deeply seated woe gradually yield to the inner vault, pulling the heavy door the influence of frequent collision with after us with a shock, which reverbe- a select and sympathising circle, and rated like thunder, and greatly in assume a more tranquil and cheerful creased our alarm. There we character. There, too, my daily inmained some time in an agony of terror, tercourse with the unassuming and and in total darkness, until the hoarse lovely Julia rapidly matured my early voice of the approaching storm warn- prepossession into a fervent and ened us to depart, and we fled through during attachment; and the following the grove to the villa, trembling at the summer I revisited the • Robber's sound of our own footsteps.”

Tower,” no longer an emaciated and It was now my turn to explain the fanciful invalid, but in the full envarious wonders of the night; and, joyment of health and happiness, the with a view to cheer my drooping and bushand of my adored Julia, and the agitated relatives, I endeavored to re- joint consoler of her still mourning, lieve with humorous coloring the ex but resigned and tranquil parent.

re

DIURNAL PRAYERS.

Ort as the bright sun dips

Beneath the western sea,
A prayer is on my lips,

Dearest! a praver for thee!
I know not where thou wanderesi now,

O'er ocean wave, or mountain brow;
I only know that He

Who hears the suppliant's prayer,
Where'er thou art, on land or sea,

Alone can shield thee there.

on as the bright dawn breaks

Behind the eastern bill,
Mine eye from slumber wakes,

My heart is with ihee still;
For thee my latest vows were said,

For thee my earliest prayers are prayed;
And oh! when storms shall lour

Above the swelling sea-
Be it my shield, in danger's hour,

That I have prayed for thee.

NOCTES AMBROSIANÆ.

NORTH AND THE SHEPHERD.

[We have often been asked why we do not give in the Atheneum parts of the Noctes Asbrosiance of Blackwood's Magazine. Our reason for not doing it has been, they contain se much relating to politics and local affairs, and so much that is otherwise unsuitable for oor pages, that we could only make use of small, detached portions. We have put together below : few extracts, however, and shall occasionally adopt the same plan in future numbers. These productions consist of familiar conversations, (real or supposed,) between Christopher North, Editor of Blackwood's Magazine, James Hogg (the Ettrick Shepherd), Timothy Tickler, and sometimes other literary friends of the Editor and contributors to that work.] SCENE-Ambrose's, Picardy Place. TIME-Evening.

my heart has often and often amaist [Enter Mr. Ambrose, with a Board of dee'd within me, to think that a' we Oysters. ]

love and long for, pine to possess, and Shepherd.EisTERS dinna interrupt burn to enjoy-a' that passion madtaukin'.-Does that dear, delightfu' dens for on the midnicht pillow, in creter, Mrs. Hemans, continue to con- the desert day-dream-a' that the tribute to ilka Annual, ane or twa o yearning sowl would fain expand ither waist beautifu' poems?

self to embrace within the rainbow North.-She does so.

circle o' its holiest and maist hearenly Shepherd.—It's no in that woman's affections—a' that speeritualeezes our power, sir, to write ill; for, when a human nature, till our very dust-formfeeling heart and a fine genius for- ed bodies seem o' the essence o' licht, gather in the bosom o' a young ma or Rowers, or music, something no tron, every line o' poetry is like a sad terrestrial, but akin to the elements o' or cheerful smile frae her een, and our native regions on the blue cloudevery poem, whatever be the subject, less liftin ae sense a picture o' hersell-sae North.You touch a chord, James that a' she writes has an affectin' and —You do indeed-you touch a chordan endearin' mainnerism and moralism Shepherd.--Should a' be delusionabout it, that inspires the thochtfu' a glamor flung ower us by a celestial reader to say in to himsell—that's but deceitful spirit-felt and seen, as Mrs. Hemans.

soon as it is broken and dissolved, to North.-From very infancy, Felicia have been a fiction, a falsehood, a lie Dorothea was beloved by the Muses. -a soft, sweet, bright, balmy, triumI remember 'patting ber fair head phant and glorious lie, in place of when she was a child of nine years, which nature offers us in mockery, and versified even then with a touch- during a' the rest o' our lives, the ing sweetness about sylphs and fairies. puir, paltry, pitiful, faded, fushionless,

Shepherd. -Early female geniuses, cauld-rifed, and chittering substitute I observe, for the maist pairt, turn out –Truth. 0, sir! waes me, that by brichter in after life than male anes. stripping a' creation, fauld after sauld, Male anes generally turn stoopiter and o'gay, litterin', gorgeous and gloristoopiter, till hy thirty they're sumphs. ous apparelin', you are sure at last to

North.-I fear it is too true. Miss come to the hard naked TruthBowles is equal to Mrs. Hemans. Aye, North.-Hamlet has it, James-sa that Andrew Cleaves in the Magazine foul congregation of vapors" — was a subduin' tale.

Shepherd.-Or say rather, like a

body carelessly or purposely pressin' Shepherd.-o man ! Mr. North, but a full-blawn or budding rose atween

his finger and his thoomb, scalin' leaf insects, and worms, and caterpillars, after leaf, till what hae you in your and speeders, in her neb, to satisfy hand at last but the bare heart o' the the hunger o' a nest a’ agape wi' yelflower, and you look down ainang low-throated young anes, and then your feet in vain for the scattered and settlin' hersell down again, as saftly dissipated bloom that a moment afore as if she were naething but feathers, thrust its bold beauty into the eyes of aboon her brood in that cozie bield, the sun, and seemed o’ its ain single although but a bit sillie burdie, happy self to be scenting the haill wilder- as ony angel in the heaven o'heaness, then sweet wi' its grassy braes, vens ? as if the heavens had hung over moun

North.-A sweet image, James ; an tains o' bloomin' heather steeped in image that beams the light of Poetry morning dew evaporating in mist- on the Prose-ground of human life! wreaths exhaled from earth to heaven But, alas ! that thin golden ring lays a in morning sacrifice !

heavy weight on the hand that wears North.—And Tibbie is married ? it-The finger it seriously and someAnother phantom, then, of my imagi- what sadly decks, never again, with nation, has melted, like a dew-drop so lightsoine touch, braids the hair from the earth.

above the fair forehead, -the gay, Shepherd.—Another phantom o my gladsome, tripping, dancing, and singimagination has melted, like a dew- ing maiden soon changes into the drop frae the earth-and a sappier staid, calm, douce, almost melancholy eister never play'd plump intil a hu- matron, whose tears are then sincerer man stamack.

than her smiles-with whom Joy seems North.-James, that is a sacrile- but a transient visitor,-Grief a congious parody on the expression of one stant guest. of the finest feelings that breathes a Shepherd.--And this warld, ye ken, sadness over our common humanity. sir, and nane kens better, was made Eat your oysters after your own fash- for Grief as weel as for Joy. Grief ion-but

and Joy, unlike as they appear in Shepherd.—Her poetry is now prose. face and figure, are nevertheless sis

North.-Gone all the light lyrical ters,—and by fate and destiny, their measures ! all the sweet pauses trans verra lives depend on ane and the posed. The numerous verse of her same eternal law. Were Grief banvirgin being shorn of all its rhymes so ished frae this life, Joy would soon musical—a thousand tunes, each in dwine awa into the resemblance o' its specific sweetness murmuring of a her departed Soror-aye, her face separate soul, blended indistinguisha- would soon be whiter and mair woebly into one monotony—and marriage, begone, and they would soon be burimarriage, marriage is the deadening ed, side by side, in ae grave. word !

North.—Shake hands, my dear Shepherd.—That's treason, sir, James. I am in bad spirits to-night, treason against natur. Is the young and love to listen to your benign philintie, I would ask, Autterin’amang losophy. the broom, or balancin' itsell in sportive happiness on ane o' the yellow Shepherd.–Our ancestors hae for jewels, half sae bonny as the same generations been as wise in the best o' lintie sitting its nest within a briar- a' wisdom as oursells—though there bush, wi’ its head lying sae meek and has been great improvement in a'the lovingly on the rim o' the moss, and airts, and aiblins the scee-ences,—but a' its breast yearning wi' the still deep o' the latter I shanna for I canna instinctive bliss o maternal affection, speak—and aboon a' things else, there -or fleeing ten times in a minute has been wrought by that means a frae briar-bush to bracken-brae, and great and a beneficial change in the frae bracken-brae to briar-bush, wi' agricultur o' the kintra.

58 ATHENEUM, vol. 1, 3d series.

worth :

my heart.

North.-Yet something, I fear, on till anither fifty-and then, to be James, may have been lost.

sure, just when I'm beginning to be a Shepherd.--Ay, mony a thing, that wee stau'd, I apply first the pepper to had I my ain way, shud leeve forever. a squad, and then, after a score or But religion, wi' a'the cauld-rife twa in that way, some dizzen and a changes in life, and manners, and cus half wi' vinegar, and finish aff, like toms, still strongly survives—and, you, wi' a wheen to the mustard, till thanks to Robert Burns—and aiblins the brodd's naething but shells. ane or twa mair, there is still poetry

North.-The cholera has left me amang our braes,—and o' nae shep- so weak, thatherd on our Scottish hills could it be Shepherd.—I dinna ken a mair pertruly said, in the language o' Words- plexin' state o' mind to be in than

to be swithering about a farther brodd A primrose on the river's brim, o' eisters, when you've devoor'd what A yellow primrose was to him, at ae moment is felt to be sufficient, And it was nothing more.

and anither moment what is felt to be For as gude a poet as Wordsworth, very insufficient-feelin' stau'd this and in my opinion, a better too, has moment, and that moment yawp as tauld us what he felt frae the sicht o' ever-100 sayin' into yoursell that a Mountain Daisy.

you'll order in the toasted cheese, and North.There is comfort in that then silently swearin' that you maun creed, my dear James. I feel as if hae anither yokin' at the beardiesan oppressive weight were taken from North.—This last attack, James,

has reduced me much-and a few Shepherd.—Then that's mair than I more like it will deprive the world of do-mair than you or ony ither man a man whose poor abilities were ever should say, after devoorin' half a hun- devoted to her serder eisters—and siccan eisters—to say Shepherd. I agree wi' ye, sir, in naething o' a tippenny loaf, a quarter a' ye say about the diffeeculty o' the o'a pund o' butter—and the better dilemma. But during the dubiety and part o'twa pats o' porter.

the swither, in comes honest Mr. North.-James ! I have not eat a Awmrose, o' his ain accord, wi' the morsel, or drank a drop, since breakfast. final brodd, and a body feels himsell

Shepherd.—Then, I've been confu- to have been a great sumph for sussioning you wi' mysel. A’ the time pecking ae single moment that he that I was sookin' up the eisters frae wasna able for his share o' the conout o' their shells, ilka ane sappier cluding Centenary o' Noble Inventhan anither in its shallow pool o'cal- tions. There's really no end in natur ler saut sea-water, and some othem to the eatin' o' eisters. takin' a stronger sook than ithers to North.—Really, James, your inrug them out o' their cradles,-I sensibility, your callousness to my thocht I saw you, sir, in my mind's complaints, painfully affects me, and ee, and no by my bodily organs, it forces me to believe that Friendship, would appear, doin' the same to a like Love, is but an empty name. nicety, only dashing on mair o' the Shepherd.-An empty wame! It's pepper, and mixing up mustard wi' your ain faut gin it's empty—but you your vinegar, as is gratifying a fawse wadna surely be for eatin' the verra appeteet.

shells ? Oh! Mr. North, but o a' North.-That cursed cholera the men I ever knew, you are the

Shepherd.--I never, at ony time o' most distinguished by natural and nathe year, hae recourse to the cruet tive coortesy and politeness—by what till after the lang hunder-and in Sep- Cicero calls Urbanity. Tak it-tak tember-after four months fast frae it. For I declare, were I to tak it, I the creturs—I can easily devoor them never could forgi'e mysell a' my days. by theirsells just in their ain liccor, Tak it, sir.-My dear sir, tak it.

North.-What do you mean, James ? clearer to me, sir, than the natural - What the d- can you mean? direction of charity. Would we all

Shepherd.—The last eister-the but relieve, according to the measure mainners eister-it's but a wee ane, of our means, those objects immedior it hadna been here. There, sir, ately within the range of our personal I've douk'd it in an amalgamation o' knowledge, how much of the worst pepper, vinegar, and mustard, and a evil of poverty might be alleviated! wee drap whiskey. Open your mouth, Very poor people, who are known to and tak it aff the pint o' my fork us to have been honest, decent, and that's a gude bairn.

industrious, when industry was in North.—I have been very ill, my their power, have a claim on us, dear James.

founded on that our knowledge, and Shepherd.-Haud your tongue-nae on vicinity and neighborhood, which sic thing. Your cheeks are no’ half have in themselves something sacred that shrivelled they were last year; and endearing to every good heart. and there's a circle o’yeloquent blood One cannot, surely, always pass by, in in them baith, as ruddy as Robin's his walks for health, restoration, or breast. Your lips are no like cher- delight, the lone way-side beggar, ries—but they were aye rather thin without occasionally giving him an and colorless since first I kent you, alms. Old, care-worn, pale, droopand when chirted thegither-Oh! ing, and emaciated creatures, who man, but they have a scornfu', and pass us by without looking beseechsavage, and cruel expression, that ingly at us, or even lifting their eyes ought seldom to be on a face o'clay. from the ground-cannot often be met As for your een, there's twenty gude with, without exciting an interest in year o' life in their licht yet. But, us for their silent and unobtrusive Lord save us !-dinna, I beseech you, sufferings or privations. A hovel, put on your specs; for when you cock here and there, round and about our up your chin, and lie back on your own comfortable dwelling, attracts our chair, and keep fastenin' your lowin' eyes by some peculiar appearance of een upon a body through the glasses, penury-and we look in, now and it's mair than mortal man can endure then, upon its inmates, cheering their -you look sae like the Deevil In- cold gloom with some small benefaccarnate.

tion. These are duties all men owe North.—I am a much-injured man to distress; they are easily dischargin the estimation of the world, James, ed, and even such tender mercies as for I am gentle as a sleeping child. these are twice blessed.

Shepherd. Come, now-you're Shepherd.-Oh, sir, you speak weel. wishin' me to flatter you-ye’re des- I like you when you're wutty-I adperate fond, man, o' flattery.

mire you when you're wise-I love North.— I admit-confess – glory and venerate you when you're good that I am so.

It is impossible to lay and what greater goodness can there it on too thick.

be in a world like this than charity ?

Tickler. But then, my worthy NORTH, TICKLER

SHEP- friend, for one man to interfere with

another's charities is always delicate North.—There are people who will —nay dangerous ; for how can the bepetition for the forfeited life of a fe- nevolent stranger, who comes to me lon, a forger, and an incendiary, who to solicit my aid to some poor family, will be shy of subscribing a pound for whose necessities he wishes to relieve, the relief of the blind aged widow, know either my means, or the claims who, industrious as long as she saw that already lie upon me, and which I Heaven's light, is now a palsied but am doing my best to discharge ? He uncomplaining pauper.

asks me for a guinea-a small sum, as Tickler. -- Nothing seems much he thinks—the hour after I have given

AND

THE

HERD.

« AnteriorContinuar »