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For thine her evening prayer is said
And she, the mother of thy boys,
The memory of her buried joys,
Talk of thy doom without a sigh:
That were not born to die.
The following verses afford an example of the melody of diction, the grace of rhythm, and the felicity of personifica tion, so universally accorded our poet's writings.
When its wild passion-waves are lulled to rest,
As fades the day-beam in the rosy west.
We gaze upon them as they melt away,
But Hope is round us with her angel lay,
Her sinile was loveliest then; her matin song
Was all unheard her sunny bowers among.
We knew not, cared not, it was born to die,
With dancing heart we gazed on the pure sky,
And mocked the passing clouds that dimmed its blue,
And manhood felt her sway too-on the eye,
Half realized, her early dreams burst bright,
Its days of joy, its vigils of delight;
And the red lightnings threaten, still the air
The rainbow of the heart, was hovering there. "Tis in life's noontide she is nearest seen, Her wreath the summer flower, her robe of summer green.
But though less dazzling in her twilight dress,
There's more of heaven's pure beam about her now;
Which the heart worships, glowing on her brow;
That points our destined tomb, nor e'er depart
And hushed the last deep beating of the heart;
Speaking of Halleck, an able critic* has remarked: His theory of poetic expression is that of the most popular masters of English verse-manly, clear, vivid, warm with genuine emotion, or sparkling with true wit. The more recent style of metrical writing, suggestive rather than emphatic, undefined and involved, and borrowed mainly from German idealism, he utterly repudiates. Al his verses have a vital meaning, and the clear ring of pure metal. They are few, but memorable." Halleck died November 19, 1867.
* H. T. Tuckerman.
NATHANIEL PARKER WILLIS was born in Portland, Maine, January 20, 1806. At the age of six he removed to Boston, and in 1827 graduated at Yale College. While a student here he published several religious poems, which, it is thought, his finest maturer efforts have failed to surpass. We cite, as one of the most graphic, melodious, and touch. ing of these,
THE HEALING OF THE DAUGHTER OF JAIRUS.
FRESHLY the cool breath of the coming eve
The shadow of a leaf lay on her lips,
The old man sunk
In the dead utter silence, that a breath
It was night And, softly, o'er the Sea of Galilee, Danced the breeze-ridden ripples to the shore, Tipp'd with the silver sparkles of the moon. The breaking waves play'd low upon the beach Their constant music, but the air beside Was still as starlight, and the Saviour's voice, In its rich.cadences unearthly sweet, Seem'd like some just-born harmony in the air, Waked by the power of wisdom. On a rock, With the broad moonlight falling on his brow, He stood and taught the people.
At his feet Lay his small scrip, and pilgrim's scallop-shell, And staff-for they had waited by the sea Till he came o’er from Gadarene, and pray'a For his wont teachings as he came to land. His hair was parted meekly on his brow, And the long curls from off his shoulders fell, As he lean'd forward earnestly, and still The same calm cadence, passionless and deepAnd in his looks the same mild majestyAnd in his mien, the sadness mix'd with powerFill'd them with love and wonder.
And silently the people shrunk away,
A moment longer on the face
The same silvery light, That shone upon the lone rock by the sea, Slept on the Ruler's lofty capitals, As at the door he stood, and welcomed in Jesus and his disciples. All was still. The echoing vestibule gave back the slide Of their loose sandals, and the arrowy beam Of moonlight, slanting to the marble floor, Lay like a spell of silence in the rooms, As Jairus led them on.
With hushing steps He trod the winding stair; but ere he touch'd The latchet, from within a whisper came, “ Trouble the Master not-for she is dead !” And his faint hand fell nerveless at his side, And his steps falter'd, and his broken voice Choked in its utterance; but a gentle hand Was laid upon his arm, and in his ear The Saviour's voice sank thrillingly and low, “She is not dead; but sleepeth.”
They pass’d in. The spice-lamps in the alabaster urns Burn'd dimly, and the white and fragrant smoke Curld indolently on the chamber walls. The silken curtains slumber'd in their folds Not even a tassel stirring in the air-And as the Saviour stood beside the bed,