Слике страница

But thou serenely silent art !

By Heaven and Love was taught to lend A milder solace to the heart,

The sacred image of a friend. All is not lost! if, yet possess'd,

To me that sweet memorial shine :
If close and closer to my breast

I hold that idol all divine.
Or, gazing through luxurious tears,

Melt o'er the loved, departed form,
Till Death's cold bosom half appears

With life, and speech, and spirit warm. She looks! she lives! this tranced hour

Her bright eye seems a purer gem Than sparkles on the throne of power,

Or glory's wealthy diadem. Yes, Genius, yes ! thy mimic aid

A treasure to my soul has given, Where Beauty's canonized shade

Smiles in the sainted hues of heaven. No spectre forms of pleasure fled,

Thy soft'ning, sweet’ning tints restore ; For thou canst give us back the dead,

E’en in the loveliest looks they wore. Then bless'd be Nature's guardian muse,

Whose hand her perish'd grace redeems! Whose tablet of a thousand hues

The mirror of creation seems. From Love began thy high descent;

And lovers, charm’d by gifts of thine, Shall bless thee mutely eloquent,

And call thee brightest of the Nine!


They lighted a taper at the dead of night,

And chanted their holiest hymn;
But her brow and her bosom were damp with affright,

Her eye was all sleepless and dim!
And the Lady of Elderslie wept for her lord,

When a deathwatch beat in her lonely room,
When her curtain had shook of its own accord,
And the raven had flapp'd at her window-board,

To tell of her warrior's doom ! “ Now sing you the death-song, and loudly pray

For the soul of my knight so dear;
And call me a widow this wretched day,

Since the warning of God is here!
For nightmares ride on my strangled sleep:

The lord of my bosom is doom'd to die :
His valorous heart they have wounded deep,
And the blood-red tears shall his country weep,

For Wallace of Elderslie !"
Yet knew not his country that ominous hour,

Ere the loud matin-bell was rung,
That a trumpet of death on an English tower

Had the dirge of her champion sung!
When his dungeon light look'd dim and red

On the highborn blood of a martyr slain,
No anthem was sung at his holy deathbed,
No weeping was there when his bosom bled,

And his heart was rent in twain!
Oh, it was not thus when his oaken spear

Was true to that knight forlorn,
And the hosts of a thousand were scatter'd like deer

At the blast of the hunter's horn; When he strode on the wreck of each well-fought field

With the yellow-hair'd chiefs of his native land; For his lance was not shiver'd on helmet or shield ; And the sword that seem'd fit for archangel to wield,

Was light in his terrible hand!

Yet bleeding and bound, though her Wallace wight

For his long-loved country die,
The bugle ne'er sung to a braver knight

Than Wallace of Elderslie!
But the day of his glory shall never depart,

His head unentomb'd shall with glory be balm'd, From its blood-streaming altar his spirit shall start : Though the raven has sed on his mouldering heart,

A nobler was never embalm'd !


What's hallow'd ground? Has earth a clod
Its Maker meant not should be trod
By man, the image of his God,

Erect and free,
Unscourged by Superstition's rod

To bow the knee?
That's hallow'd ground—where, mourn'd and miss'd,
The lips repose our love has kiss'd;
But where's their memory's mansion? Is't

Yon churchyard's bowers ?
No! in ourselves their souls exist,

A part of ours.
A kiss can consecrate the ground
Where mated hearts are mutual bound:
The spot where love's first links were wound,

That ne'er are riven,
Is hallow'd down to earth's profound,

And up to heaven!
For time makes all but true love old;
The burning thoughts that then were told
Run molten still in memory's mould ;

And will not cool,
Until the heart itself be cold

In Lethe's pool.

What hallows ground where heroes sleep?
'Tis not the sculptured piles you heap !
In dews that heavens far distant weep

Their turf may bloom ;
Or Genii twine beneath the deep

Their coral tomb.
But strew his ashes to the wind
Whose sword or voice has served mankind;
And is he dead whose glorious mind

Lifts thine on high?
To live in hearts we leave behind

Is not to die.
Is't death to fall for Freedom's right?
He's dead alone that lacks her light!
And murder sullies in Heaven's sight

The sword he draws :
What can alone ennoble fight?

A noble cause ! Give that! and welcome War to brace Her drums! and rend Heaven's reeking space! The colours planted face to face,

The charging cheer, Though Death's pale horse lead on, the chase

Shall still be dear.

And place our trophies where men kneel
To Heaven !-but Heaven rebukes my zeal!
The cause of Truth and human weal,

Oh God above!
Transfer it from the sword's appeal

To Peace and Love.

Peace, Love! the cherubim, that join
Their spread wings o'er Devotion's shrine:
Prayers sound in vain, and temples shine,

Where they are not :
The heart alone can make divine

Religion's spot.

[ocr errors]

To incantations dost thou trust,
And pompous rites in domes august ?
See mouldering stones and metal's rust

Belie the vaunt,
That man can bless one pile of dust

With chime or chant.
The ticking wood-worm mocks thee, man!
Thy temples-creeds themselves grow wan!
But there's a dome of nobler span,

A temple given
Thy faith, that bigots dare not ban-

Its space is Heaven!
Its roof star-pictured Nature's ceiling,
Where, trancing the rapt spirit's feeling,
And God himself to man revealing,

The harmonious spheres
Make music, though unheard their pealing

By mortal ears.
Fair stars ! are not your beings pure ?
Can sin, can death your worlds obscure ?
Else why so swell the thoughts at your

Aspéct above ?
Ye must be Heavens that make us sure

Of heavenly love!
And in your harmony sublime
I read the doom of distant time;
That man's regenerate soul from crime

Shall yet be drawn,
And reason on his mortal clime

Immortal dawn.
What's hallow'd ground ? 'Tis what gives birth
To sacred thoughts in souls of worth!
Peace! Independence! Truth! go forth

Earth's compass'd round;
And your high-priesthood shall make earth



« ПретходнаНастави »