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(Close by the marble hearth her garden smil'd,)
The widow'd mother of an only child.

I saw her to the house of marriage move,
And weeping o'er the grave of hope and love,
Now, where the woe-worn and the weary rest,
The child is sleeping on its mother's breast.
Not long she mourn'd in duty's lonely shade,
No praise expecting-and she ask'd no aid;
But toil'd and faded silently, and stood
Alike unnotic'd by the bad and good,
Dropping meek tears into the sea of days;
Like a pale flower, that, all unseen, displays
Its pensive beauty on a river's brink,

While overhead the stars rush wild and wink,

And shadows cast on earth at night's bright noon,

Move with the clouds, that chase the full-orb’d moon.
Oh, happy! with her own proud crust supplied,

In her own bed, a Britoness she died;

In her own shroud her modest state she keeps ;
In her own coffin, gloriously, she sleeps!
Not thus the brother of her soul will die;
O'er him, poor pauper, none will heave a sigh;
No windflower, emblem of his youth, be laid,
To blush for promise in its bloom decay'd;
Nor, emblem of his age, and hopeless pain,
The dismal daisy of sad autumn's wane;
But workhouse idiots, and the limping slave,
In four rough boards shall bear him to his grave.


Where is the Common, once with blessings rich,
The poor man's Common? Like the poor man's flitch
And well-fed ham, which erst his means allow'd,
"Tis gone, to bloat the idle and the proud!
To raise high rents! and lower low profits! Oh,
To-morrow of the Furies! thou art slow.

But where, thou tax-plough'd waste, is now the hind
Who lean'd on his own strength, his heart and mind?
Where is the matron, with her busy brow?
Their sheep, where are they? and their famous cow?
Their strutting game-cock, with his many queens ?
Their glowing hollyoaks, and winter greens?
The chubby lad, that cheer'd them with his look,
And shar'd his breakfast with the home-bred rook?
The blooming girls, that scour'd the snow-white pail,
Then, wak'd with joy the echoes of the vale,
And, loaded homewards, near the sparkling rill,
Cropp'd the first rose that blush'd beneath the hill ?
All vanish'd with their rights, their hopes, their lands,
The shoulder-shaking grasp of hearts and hands,
The good old joke, applauded still as new,
The wond'rous printed tale, which must be true,

And the stout ale, that show'd the matron's skill,
For, not to be improv'd, it mended still!

Now, lo! the young look base, as grey-beard guile!
The very children seem afraid to smile!
But not afraid to scowl, with early hate,
At would-be greatness, or the greedy great;
For they who fling the poor man's worth away,
Root out security, and plant dismay.

Law of the lawless! hast thou conquer'd Heaven?
Then shall the worm that dies not be forgiv'n.


But yonder stalks the greatest man alive!
One farmer prospers now, where prosper'd five!
Ah, where are they? wives, husbands, children, where?
Two died in gaol, and one is dying there;
One, broken-hearted, fills a rural grave;

And one still lives, a pauper and a slave.

Where are their children? some, beyond the main,
Convicts for crime; some, here, in hopeless pain,
Poor wanderers, blue with want; and some are dead,
And some, in towns, earn deathily their bread.
All rogues, they died, or fail'd-'twas no great harm;
Why ask who fails, if Jolter gets a farm?
Full well thrives he-the man is not a fool,
Albeit a tyrant, and his landlord's tool.

He courses-he affords, and can afford,

To keep his blood, and fox-hunt with my lord.

He dwells where dwelt the knight, for greyhounds fam'd, Who also with the satrap cours'd and gam'd;

The last of all the little landed thanes,

Whose acres bound his lordship's wide domains.


Oh, happy, if they knew their bliss, are they
Who, poor themselves, unbounded wealth survey;
Who nor in ships, nor cabs, nor chariots go,
To view the miracles of art below;

But, near their homes, behold august abodes,
That like the temples seem of all the gods!
Nor err they, if they sometimes kneel in pray'r
At shrines like those, for God-like powers are there;
Powers, that on railroads base no treasures waste,
Nor build huge mills, that blush like brick at taste,
Where labour fifteen hours, for twice a groat,
The half-angelic heirs of speech and thought;
But pour profusion from a golden hand,
To deck with Grecian forms a Gothic land.
Hence, yeoman, hence! thy grandsire's land resign;
Yield, peasants, to my lord and power divine!
Thy grange is
cluster'd hovels fall;
gone, your
Proud domes expand, the park extends its wall;

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Then kennels rise, the massive Tuscan grows,
And dogs sublime, like couchant kings, repose!
Lo! "still-all-Greek and glorious" art is here!
Behold the pagod of a British Peer!

Admire, ye proud, and clap your hands, ye poor!
The father of this kingling was a boor!

Not Ispahan, nor Stamboul-though their thrones
Make satraps out of dead men's blood and bones,
And play at death, as God-like power will play—
Can match free Britain's ancients of to-day.


But me nor palaces, nor satraps please ;
I love to look on happy cottages:

The gems I seek are seen in Virtue's eye:
These gauds disgust me, and I pass them by.
Show me a home, like that I knew of old,

Ere heads grew hot with pride, and bosoms cold;
Some frank, good deeds, which simple truth may praise,
Some moral graće, on which the heart may gaze,
Some little hopes, that give to toil its zest,
The equal rights, that make the labourer blest,
The smile in which Eternal Love we scan,
And thank his Maker, while we look on man.


I dream'd, last night, of forests and the sea!
My long-lost Hannah! lives she still for me?
Is she a matron, lov'd by him she loves?
A mother, whom paternal Heav'n approves?
Perchance a widow? Nay, I would not wed
The widow of my rival's happier bed.
Nor come I to oppress her with my gaze,
Or bring disgrace upon her latter days.


Forgotten now, perchance, though once too dear,
yet would sojourn near her-oh, not here!
For thou, sweet Village! proud in thy decline,
Art too, too splendid for a heart like mine!
In England, then, can no green spot be found,

Where men remain, whose sympathies are sound?
There would I dwell, and wandering thence, draw nigh
Her envied home-but not to meet her eye;
Perchance to see her shadow, or again

Hear her soft voice, with sadly-pleasing pain.


I dream'd I saw her, heard her-but she fled!
In vain I seek her-is she with the dead?
No meek blue eye, like hers, hath turn'd to me,
And deign'd to know the pilgrim of the sea.

I have not nam'd her—no—I dare not name!

When I would speak, why burns my cheek with shame?

I join'd the schoolboys, where the road is wide,
I watch'd the women to the fountain's side;
I read their faces, as the wise read books,
And look'd for Hannah in their wondering looks;
But in no living aspect could I trace

The sweet May morning of my Hannah's face,
No, nor its evening, fading into night:
Oh, Sun, my soul grows weary of thy light!


I sought the churchyard, where the lifeless lie,
And envied them, they rest so peacefully.
"No wretch comes here, at dead of night," I said,
"To drag the weary from his hard-earn'd bed;
No schoolboys here with mournful relics play,
And kick the dome of thought' o'er common clay;
No city cur snarls here o'er dead men's bones;
No sordid fiend removes memorial stones.
The dead have here what to the dead belongs,
Though legislation makes not laws, but wrongs."
I sought a letter'd stone, on which my tears
Had fall'n like thunder-rain, in other years;
My mother's grave I sought, in my despair,
But found it not! our grave-stone was not there!
No, we were fallen men, mere workhouse slaves,
And how could fallen men have names or graves?
I thought of sorrow in the wilderness,
And death in solitude, and pitiless
Interment in the tiger's hideous maw:

I pray'd, and, praying, turn'd from all I saw :
My prayers were curses! But the sexton came :
How my heart yearn'd to name my Hannah's name!
White was his hair, for full of days was he,
And walk'd o'er tombstones, like their history.
With well-feign'd carelessness I rais'd a spade,
Left near a grave, which seem'd but newly made,
And ask'd who slept below? "You knew him well,"
The old man answer'd, "Sir, his name was Bell.
He had a sister-she, alas! is gone,

Body and soul, Sir! for she married one
Unworthy of her. Many a corpse he took
From this churchyard." And then his head he shook,
And utter'd-whispering low, as if in fear

That the old stones and senseless dead would hear-
A word, a verb, a noun, too widely famed,

Which makes me blush to hear my country named.
That word he utter'd, gazing on my face,

As if he loath'd my thoughts, then paus'd a space.
"Sir," he resum'd, "a sad death Hannah died;
Her husband-kill'd her, or his own son lied.
Vain is your voyage o'er the briny wave,
If here you seek her grave-she had no grave!

The terror-stricken murderer fled before
His crime was known, and ne'er was heard of more.
The poor boy died, Sir! uttering fearful cries
In his last dreams, and with his glaring eyes,
And troubled hands, seem'd acting, as it were,
His mother's fate. Yes, Sir, his grave is there.
But you are ill? your looks make me afraid;—
My God! he shakes so frightfully the spade!"


Oh, welcome once again black ocean's foam!
England? Can this be England? this my home?
This country of the crime without a name,
And men who know nor mercy, hope, nor shame?
Oh, Light! that cheer'st all life, from sky to sky,
As with a hymn, to which the stars reply!
Canst thou behold this land, oh, Holy Light!
And not turn black with horror at the sight?
Fall'n country of my fathers fall'n and foul !
Thy body still is here, but where the soul?
I look upon a corpse-'tis putrid clay-
And fiends possess it! Vampires, quit your prey!
Or vainly tremble, when the dead arise,
Clarion'd to vengeance by shriek-shaken skies,

And cranch your hearts, and drink your blood for ale!
Then, eat each other-till the banquet fail!


Again upon the deep I toss and swing!
The bounding billow lifts me, like the wing
Of the struck eagle-and away I dart,
Bearing afar the arrow in my heart.

For thou art with me, though I see no more
Thee, stream-lov'd England! Thy impatient shore
Hath sunk beneath me-miles, a thousand miles ;
Yet, in my heart, thy verdant Eden smiles.
Land, where my Hannah died, and hath no tomb!
Still, in my soul, thy dewy roses bloom.
Ev'n in Niagara's roar, remembrance still
Shall hear thy throstle, o'er the lucid rill,
At lucid eve-thy bee, at stillest noon;
And when clouds chase the heart-awaking moon,
The mocking-bird, where Erie's waters swell,
Shall sing of fountain'd vales, and philomel:
To my sick soul bring over worlds of waves,
Dew-glistening Albion's woods, and dripping caves,
But with her linnet, redbreast, lark, and wren,
Her blasted homes and much-enduring men!

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