Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB

Her influence breathes, and bids the blighted heart,
To life and hope from desolation start!
She with a look dissolves the captive's chain,
Peopling with beauty widow'd homes again;
Around the mother, in her closing years,
Gathering her sons once more, and from the tears
Of the dim past but winning purer light,
To make the present more serenely bright.

Nor rests that influence here. From clime to

clime,
In silence gliding with the stream of time,
Still doth it spread, borne onwards, as a breeze
With healing on its wings, o'er isles and seas.
And as Heaven's breath calld forth, with genial

power,
From the dry wand the almond's living flower,
So doth its deep-felt charm in secret move
The coldest heart to gentle deeds of love;
While round its pathway nature softly glows,
And the wide desert blossoms as the rose.

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,
And the rich harvest wave upon thy breast !
Yet shall thy cottage smoke, at dewy morn,
Rise in blue wreaths above the flowering thorn,
And, midst thy hamlet shades, the embosom'd spire
Catch from deep-kindling heavens their earliest fire.

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,
Which vice but breathes on and its hues are dead,
Shall at the call press forward, to be made
A glorious offering, meet for him who said,

Mercy, not sacrifice!" and, when of old
Clouds of rich incense from his altars rolld,
Dispersed the smoke of perfumes, and laid bare
The heart's deep folds, to read its homage there!

66

:

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;
There are more noble strains than those which swell
The triumphs ruin may suffice to tell!

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.

NOTES.

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.
The chieftain's power-they had no bard, and died.

“ Vixere fortes ante Agamemnona
Multi; sed omnes illachrymabiles
Urgentur, ignotique longâ

Nocte, carent quia vate sacro."--HORACE.
“ They had no poet-and they died."-Pope's Translation.

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.

a

« AnteriorContinuar »