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gods, but he could not wrestle with Time, nor so much as lift up a fold of the great snake which bound the universe together; and when he smote the Earth, though with his terrible mallet, it was but as if a leaf had fallen. Yet all the while it seemed to Thor that he had only been wrestling with an old woman, striving to lift a cat, and striking a stupid giant on the head.
And in old times, doubtless, the giants were stupid, and there was no better sport for the Sir Launcelots and Sir Gawains than to go about cutting off their great blundering heads with enchanted swords. But things have wonderfully changed. It is the giants, nowadays, that have the science and the intelligence, while the chivalrous Don Quixotes of Conservatism still cumber themselves with the clumsy armor of a bygone age. On whirls the restless globe through unsounded time, with its cities and its silences, its births and funerals, half light, half shade, but never wholly dark, and sure to swing round into the happy morning at last. With an involuntary smile, one sees Mr. Calhoun letting slip his pack-thread cable with a crooked pin at the end of it to anchor South Carolina upon the bank and shoal of the Past. - H. W.]
We aint none riled by their frettin' an'
frothin', We're used to layin' the string on our
Sez Mister Foote,
“I should like to shoot The holl gang, by the gret horn
spoon !” sez he. “Freedom's Keystone is Slavery, thet
ther 's no doubt on, It's sutthin' thet 's— wha'd' ye call it ?
divine,An' the slaves thet we ollers make the
most out on Air them north o' Mason an' Dixon's
“Fer all that,” sez Mangum,
“'T would be better to hang 'em
An' so git red on 'em soon,” sez he. “The mass ough' to labor an' we lay on
soffies, Thet's the reason I want to spread Free
dom's aree; It puts all the cunninest on us in office, An' reelises our Maker's orig'nal idee," Sez John C. Calhoun, sez he;
“Thet's ez plain," sez Cass,
“ Ez thet some one's an ass, It's ez clear ez the sun is at noon," sez
“Now don't go to say I'm the friend of
oppression, But keep all your spare breath fer coolin'
your broth, Fer I ollers hev strove (at least thet's my
impression) To make cussed free with the rights o*
“ Yes," sez Davis o' Miss.,
“The perfection o' bliss Is in skinnin' thet same old coon," sez
* The North haint no kind o' bisness with
nothin', An' you 've no idee how much bother it
“Slavery's a thing thet depends on com.
plexion, It's God's law thet fetters on black skins
don't chafe; Ef brains wuz to settle it (horrid reflection |
Wich of our onnable body'd be safe ? "
“The slavery question aint no ways bewil
derin', North an' South hev one int'rest, it's plain
to a glance; No'thern men, like us patriarchs, don't sell
their childrin, But they du sell themselves, ef they git a
Sez Atherton here,
“ This is gittin' severe, I wish I could dive like a loon," sez he.
“ It's 'coz they ’re so happy, thet, wen crazy
sarpints Stick their nose in our bizness, we git so
darned riled; We think it 's our dooty to give pooty sharp
hints, Thet the last crumb of Edin on airth
sha'n't be spiled,”
“Ah,” sez Dixon H. Lewis,
“It 'll break up the Union, this talk about
freedom, An' your
fact' ry gals (soon ez we split) 'll make head, An' gittin' some Miss chief or other to lead
'em, 'll go to work raisin' permiscoous Ned,” Sez John C. Calhoun, sez he; —
• Yes, the North,” sez Colquitt,
“Ef we Southeners all quit, Would
down like a busted balloon," sez be.
[It was said of old time, that riches have wings; and, though this be not applicable in a literal'strictness to the wealth of our patriarchal brethren of the South, yet it is clear that their possessions have legs, and an unaccountable propensity for using them in a northerly direction. I marvel that the grand jury of Washington did not find a true bill against the North Star for aiding and abetting Drayton and Sayres. It would have been quite of a piece with the intelligence displayed by the South on other questions connected with slavery. I think that no ship of state was ever freighted with a more veritable Jonah than this same domestic institution of ours. Mephistopheles himself could not feign so bitterly, so satirically sad a sight as this of three millions of human beings crushed beyond help or hope by this one mighty argument, Our fathers knew no better! Nevertheless, it is the unavoidable destiny of Jonahs to be cast overboard sooner or later. Or shall we try the experiment of hiding our Jonah in a safe place, that none may lay hands on him to make jetsam of him ? Let us, then, with equal forethought and wisdom, lash ourselves to the anchor, and await, in pious confidence, the certain result. Perhaps our suspicious passenger is no Jonah after all, being black. For it is well known that a superintending Providence made
“ Jest look wut is doin', wut annyky's
brewin' In the beautiful clime o' the olive an'
vine, All the wise aristoxy's atumblin' to ruin, An' the sankylots drorin' an' drinkin'
“ Yes,” sez Johnson, “ in France
M. C., say
a kind of sandwich of Ham and his descendants, to be devoured by the Caucasian race.
In God's name, let all, who hear nearer and nearer the hungry moan of the storm and the growl of the breakers, speak out! But, alas ! we have no right to interfere. If a man pluck an apple of mine, he shall be in danger of the justice; but if he steal my brother, I must be silent. Who says this? Our Constitution, consecrated by the callous consuetude of sixty years, and grasped in triumphant argument by the left hand of him whose right hand clutches the clotted slave-whip.. Justice, venerable with the undethronable majesty of countless æons, says, -SPEAK! The Past, wise with the sorrows and desolations of ages, from amid her shattered fanes and wolf - housing palaces, echoes, SPEAK! Nature, through her thousand trumpets of freedom, herstars, her sunrises, her seas, her winds, her cataracts, her mountains blue with cloudy pines, blows jubilant encouragement, and cries, --SPEAK! From the soul's trembling abysses the still, small voice not vaguely murmurs, -SPEAK! But, alas! the Constitution and the Honorable Mr. Bagowind,
- BE DUMB! It occurs to me to suggest, as a topic of inquiry in this connection, whether, on that momentous occasion when the goats and the sheep shall be parted, the Constitution and the Honorable Mr. Bagowind, M. C., will be expected to take their places on the left as our hircine vicars,
Quid sum miser tunc dicturus !
Quem patronuin rogaturus ! There is a point whern toleration sinks into sheer baseness and poltroonery. The toleration of the worst leads us to look on what is barely better as good enough, and to worship what is only moderately good. Woe to that man, or that nation, to whom mediocrity has become an ideal !
Has our experiment of self-government succeeded, if it barely manage to rub and go ? Here, now, is a piece of barbarism which Christ and the nineteenth century say shall cease, and which Messrs. Smith, Brown, and others say shall not cease. I would by no means deny the eminent respectability of these gentlemen, but I confess, that, in such a wrestling-match, I cannot help having my fears for them. Discile justitiam, moniti, et non temnere divos.
the editor of the “Jaalam Independent Blunderbuss" has unaccountably absented himself from our house of worship.
" I know of no so responsible position as that of the public journalist. The editor of our day bears the same relation to his time that the clerk bore to the age before the invention of printing. Indeed, the position which he holds is that which the clergyman should hold even now. But the clergyman chooses to walk off to the extreme edge of the world, and to throw such seed as he has clear over into that darkness which he calls the Next Life. As if next did not mean nearest, and as if any life were nearer than that immediately present one which boils and eddies all around him at the caucus, the ratification meeting, and the polls! Who taught him to exhort men to prepare for eternity, as for some future era of which the present forms no integral part? The furrow which Time is even now turning runs through the Everlasting, and in that must he plant, or nowhere. Yet he would fain believe and teach that we are going to have more of eternity than we have now. This going of his is like that of the auctioneer, on which gone follows before we have made up our minds to bid, - in which manner, not three months back, I lost an excellent copy of Chappelow on Job. So it has come to pass that the preacher, instead of being a living force, has faded into an emblematic figure at christenings, weddings, and funerals. Or, if he exercise any other function, it is as keeper and feeder of certain theologic dogmas, which, when occasion offers, he unkennels with a staboy ! 'to bark and bite as 't is their nature to,' whence that reproach of odium theologicum has arisen.
“Meanwhile, see what a pulpit the editor mounts daily, sometimes with a congregation of fifty thousand within reach of his voice, and never so much as a nodder, even, among them! And from what a Bible can he choose his text,
a Bible which needs no translation, and which no priestcraft can shut and clasp from the laity,
the open volume of the world, upon which, with a pen of sunshine or destroying fire, the inspired Present is even now writing the annals of God! Methinks the editor who should under stand his calling, and be equal thereto, would truly deserve that title of mouunu dawv, which Homer bestows upon princes. He would be the Moses of our nineteenth century; and whereas the old Sinai, silent now, is but a common mountain stared at by the elegant tourist and crawled over by the hammering geologist, he must find his tables of the new law here among factories and cities in this Wilderness of Sin (Numbers xxxiii, 12) called Progress of Civilization, and be the captain of our Exodus into the Canaan of a truer social order.
“Nevertheless, our editor will not come so far within even the shadow of Sinai as Mahomet did, but chooses rather to construe Moses by Joe Smith. He takes up the crook, not that the sheep may be fed, but that he may never want a warm woollen suit and a joint of mutton.
THE PIOUS EDITOR'S CREED
[At the special instance of Mr. Biglow, I preface the following satire with an extract from a sermon preached during the past summer, from Ezekiel xxxiv, 2: “Son of man, prophesy against the shepherds of Israel." Since the Sabbath on which this discourse was delivered,
An' buttered, tu, fer sartin ; I mean in preyin' till one busts
On wut the party chooses, An' in convartin' public trusts
To very privit uses.
Immemor, O, fidei, pecorumque oblite tuorum! For which reason I would derive the name editor not so much from edo, to publish, as from edo, to eat, that being the peculiar profession to which he esteems himself called. He blows up the flames of political discord for no other occasion than that he may thereby handily boil his own pot. I believe there are two thousand of these mutton-loving shepherds in the United States, and of these, how many have even the dimmest perception of their immense power, and the duties consequent thereon ? Here and there, haply, one. Nine hundred and ninetynine labor to impress upon the people the great principles of Tweedledum, and other nine hundred and ninety-nine preach with equal earnestness the gospel according to Tweedledee." H. W.)
I Du believe in Freedom's cause,
Ez fur away ez Payris is ;
In them infarnal Phayrisees ;
To dror resolves an’ triggers,-
Thet don't agree with niggers.
I du believe the people want
A tax on teas an' coffees,
Purvidin' I'm in office;
My eye-teeth filled their sockets,
Partic'larly his pockets.
O' levyin' the texes,
I git jest wut I axes ;
Because it kind o'rouses
Our quiet custom-houses.
To sen' out furrin missions,
An' orthydox conditions ; I mean nine thousan' dolls. per ann.,
Nine thousan' more fer outfit, An' me to recommend a man
The place 'ould jest about fit. I du believe in special ways
O'prayin' an' convartin'; The bread comes back in many days,
I du believe in bein' this
Or thet, ez it may happen One way or 't other bendiest is
To ketch the people nappin'; It aint by princerples nor men
My preudunt course is steadied, I scent wich pays the best, an' then
Go into it baldheaded.
I du believe thet holdin' slaves
Comes nat'ral to a Presidunt, Let ’lone the rowdedow it saves
To hev a wal-broke precedunt;
Fer any office, small or gret,
I could n't ax with no face, ’uthout I'd ben, thru dry an’ wet,
Th’unrizzest kind o’ doughface.
score of others, as minute as he, are gazing in open-mouthed admiration, is a famous philosopher, expounding to a select audience their capacity for the Infinite. That scarce discernible pufflet of smoke and dust is a revolution. That speck there is a reformer, just arranging the lever with which he is to move the world. And lo, there creeps forward the shadow of a skeleton that blows one breath between its grinning teeth, and all our distinguished actors are whisked off the slippery stage into the dark Beyond.
Yes, the little show-box has its solemner suggestions. Now and then we catch a glimpse of a grim old man, who lays down a scythe and hour-glass in the corner while he shifts the scenes. There, too, in the dim background, a weird shape is ever delving. Sometimes he leans upon his mattock, and gazes, as a coach whirls by, bearing the newly married on their wedding jaunt, or glances carelessly at a babe brought home from christening. Suddenly (for the scene grows larger and larger as we look) a bony hand snatches back a performer in the midst of his part, and him, whom yesterday two infinities (past and future) would not suffice, a handful of dust is enough to cover and silence forever. Nay, we see the same fleshless fingers opening to clutch the showman himself, and guess, not without a shudder, that they are lying in wait for spectator also.
Think of it: for three dollars a year I buy a season-ticket to this great Globe Theatre, for which God would write the dramas (only that we like farces, spectacles, and the tragedies of Apollyon better), whose scene-shifter is Time, and whose curtain is rung down by Death.
"Such thoughts will occur to me sometimes as I am tearing off the wrapper of my newspaper. Then suddenly that otherwise too often vacant sheet becomes invested for me with a strange kind of awe. Look! deaths and marriages, notices of inventions, discoveries, and books, lists of promotions, of killed, wounded, and missing, news of fires, accidents, of sudden wealth and as sudden poverty ;- I hold in my hand the ends of myriad invisible electric conductors, along which tremble the joys, sorrows, wrongs, triumphs, hopes, and despairs of as many men and women everywhere. So that upon that mood of mind which seems to isolate me from mankind as a spectator of their puppetpranks, another supervenes, in which I feel that 1, too, unknown and unheard of, am yet of some import to my fellows. For, through my newspaper here, do not families take pains to send me, an entire stranger, news of a death among them ? Are not here two who would have me know of their marriage ? And, strangest of all, is not this singular person anxious to have me informed that he has received a fresh supply of Dimitry Bruisgins ? But to none of us does the Present continue miraculous (even if for a moment discerned as such). We glance carelessly at the sunrise, and get used to Orion and the Pleiade The ond wears off, and to-morrow this sheet, (Acts x. 11, 12,) in which a vision was
(I subjoin here another passage from my before-mentioned discourse.
“Wonderful, to him that has eyes to see it rightly, is the newspaper. To me, for example, sitting on the critical front bench of the pit, in my study here in Jaalam, the advent of my weekly journal is as that of a strolling theatre, or rather of a puppet-show, on whose stage, narrow as it is, the tragedy, comedy, and farce of life are played in little. Behold the whole huge earth sent to me hebdomadally in a brownpaper wrapper !
Hither, to my obscure corner, by wind or steam, on horseback or dromedary-back, in the pouch of the Indian runner, or clicking over the magnetic wires, troop all the famous performers from the four quarters of the globe. Looked at from a point of criticism, tiny puppets they seem all, as the editor sets up his booth upon my desk and officiates as showman. Now I can truly see how little and transitory is life. The earth appears almost as a drop of vinegar, on which the solar microscope of the imagination must be brought to bear in order to make out anything distinctly. That animalcule there, in the pea-jacket, is Louis Philippe, just landed on the coast of England. That other, in the gray surtout and cocked hat, is Napoleon Bonaparte Smith, assuring France that she need apprehend no interference from him in the present alarming juncture. At that spot, where you seem to see a speck of something in motion, is an immense mass-meeting. Look sharper, and you will see a mite brandishing his mandibles in an excited manner, That is the great Mr. Soandso, defining his position mid tumultuous and irrepressible cheers. That infinitesimal creature, upon whom some