« AnteriorContinuar »
Her influence breathes, and bids the blighted heart,
Nor rests that influence here. From clime to
Yes! let the waste lift up the exulting voice ! Let the far-echoing solitude rejoice! And thou, lone moor! where no blithe reaper's song E'er lightly sped the summer hours along, Bid thy wild rivers, from each mountain-source Rushing in joy, make music on their course! Thou, whose sole records of existence mark The scene of barbarous rites in ages dark, And of some nameless combat; hope's bright eye Beams o'er thee in the light of prophecy!
Yet shalt thou smile, by busy culture drest,
Thee, too, that hour shall bless, the balmy close Of labour's day, the herald of repose, Which gathers hearts in peace; while social mirth Basks in the blaze of each free village hearth; While peasant songs are on the joyous gales, And merry England's voice floats up from all her
vales. Yet are there sweeter sounds; and thou shalt hear Such as to Heaven's immortal host are dear. Oh! if there still be melody on earth Worthy the sacred bowers where man drew birth, When angel-steps their paths rejoicing trode, And the air trembled with the breath of God; It lives in those soft accents, to the sky? Borne from the lips of stainless infancy, When holy strains, from life's pure fount which
sprung, Breathed with deep reverence, falter on its tongue.
And such shall be thy music, when the cells, Where Guilt, the child of hopeless Misery, dwells, (And, to wild strength by desperation wrought, In silence broods o'er many a fearful thought,) Resound to pity's voice; and childhood thence, Ere the cold blight hath reach'd its innocence,
Ere that soft rose-bloom of the soul be fled,
Mercy, not sacrifice!" and, when of old
When some crown'd conqueror, o'er a trampled
world His banner, shadowing nations, hath unfurld, And, like those visitations which deform Nature for centuries, bath made the storm His pathway to dominion's lonely sphere, Silence behind—before him, flight and fear : When kingdoms rock beneath his rushing wheels, Till each fair isle the mighty impulse feels, And earth is moulded but by one proud will, And sceptred realms wear fetters, and are still ; Shall the free soul of song bow down to pay, The earthquake homage on its baleful way? Shall the glad harp send up exulting strains O’er burning cities and forsaken plains ? And shall no harmony of softer close Attend the stream of mercy as it flows, And, mingling with the murmur of its wave, Bless the green shores its gentle currents lave?
Oh! there are loftier themes, for him whose eyes Have search'd the depths of life's realities, Than the red battle, or the trophied car,
Wheeling the monarch-victor fast and far;
Ye prophet-bards, who sat in elder days Beneath the palms of Judah! ye whose lays With torrent rapture, from their source on high, Burst in the strength of immortality! Oh ! not alone, those haunted groves among, Of conquering hosts, of empires crush'd, ye sung; But of that spirit destined to explore, With the bright day-spring, every distant shore, To dry the tear, to bind the broken reed, To make the home of peace in hearts that bleed ; With beams of hope to pierce the dungeon's gloom, And
pour eternal star-light o'er the tomb.
And bless'd and hallow'd be its haunts! for there Hath man's high soul been rescued from despair ! There hath the immortal spark for heaven been
nursed ; There from the rock the springs of life have burst Quenchless and pure ! and holy thoughts, that rise Warm from the source of human sympathies-Where'er its path of radiance may be traced, Shall find their temple in the silent waste.
Note 1, page 206, line 11. Still rise the cairns, of yore all rudely piled. In some parts of Dartmoor, the surface is thickly strewed with stones, which in many instances appear to have been collected into piles on the tops of prominent hillocks, as if in imitation of the natural Tors. The Stone-barrows of Dartmoor resemble the cairns of the Cheviot and Grampian hills, and those in Cornwall.-See COOKE's Topographical Survey of Devonshire.
Note 2, page 207, line 12. And the rude arrow's barb remain to tell. Flint arrow-heads have occasionally been found upon Dartmoor.
Note 3, page 207, line 15.
“ Vixere fortes ante Agamemnona
Nocte, carent quia vate sacro."--HORACE.
Note 4, page 207, line 18. There stands an altar of unsculptured stone. On the east of Dartmoor are some Druidical remains, one of which is a Cromlech, whose three rough pillars of granite support a ponderous table-stone, and form a kind of large irregular tripod.