Page images
[ocr errors][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small]
[ocr errors]

TYERE was a sound of revelry by night,

And Belgium's capital had gathered then
Her beauty and her chivalry, and bright
The lamps shone o'er fair women and brave men;
A thousand hearts beat happily ; and when
Music arose with its voluptuous swell,
Soft eyes look'd love to eyes which spake again,
And all went merry as a marriage bell;
But hush ! hark! a deep sound strikes like a rising knell!

Did ye not hear it ?-No; 'twas but the wind,
Or the car rattling o'er the stony street;
On with the dance ! let joy be unconfined;
No sleep till morn, when youth and pleasure meet
To chase the glowing hours with flying feet-
But hark !--that heavy sound breaks in once more,
As if the clouds its echo would repeat ;
And nearer, clearer, deadlier than before !
Arm! arm ! it is—it is the cannon's opening roar!

Within a windowed niche of that high hall
Sate Brunswick's fated chieftain; he did hear
That sound the first amidst the festival,
And caught its tune with death's prophetic car ;
And when they smiled because he deem'd it near,
His heart more truly knew that peal too well
Which stretch'd his father on a bloody bier,
And roused the vengeance blooil alone could quell:
Ile rush'd into the field, and, foremost, fighting, fell.

Ah ! then and there was hurrying to and fro,
And gathering terrs, and tremblings of distress,
And cheeks all pale, which but an hour ago
Blush'd at the praise of their own loveliness ;


And there were sudden partings, such as press
The life from out young hearts, and choking sighs
Which ne'er might be repeater ; who could guess
If ever more shoull vieet those mutual eyes,
Since upon nights so sweet such awful morn could rise ?

And there was mounting in hot haste : the steed,
The mustering squadron, and the clattering car,
Went pouring forward with impetuous speed,
And swiftly forming in the ranks of war;
And the deep thunder peal on peal afar ;
And near the beat of the alarming drum
Roused up the soldier ere the morning star ;
While thronged the citizens with terror dumb,
Or whispering with white lips-“The foe! they come!

they come !"

And wild and high the “Cameron's gathering rose !"
The war-note of Lochiel, which Albyn's hills
Have heard, and heard, too, have her Saxon foes :-
How in the noon of night that pibroch thrills,
Savage and shrill ! but with the breath which fills
Their mountain-pipe, so fill the mountaineers
With the fierce native daring which instils
The stirring memory of a thousand years,
And Evan's, Donald's fame rings in each clans-man's ear!

And Ardennes waves above them her green leaves,
Dewy with nature's tear-drops, as they pass,
Grieving, if aught inanimate e'er grieves,
Over the unreturning brave,--alas!
Ere evening to be trodden like the grass
Which now beneath them, but above shall grow
In its next verdure, when this fiery mass
Of living valour, rolling on the foe
And burning with high hope, shall moulder cold and low.

Last noon beheld them full of lusty life,
Last eve in beauty's circle proudly gay,
The midnight brought the signal-sound of strife,
The morn the marshalling in arms,-the day
Battle's magnificently-stern array !
The thunder-clouds close o'er it, which when rent
The earth is covered thick with other clay,
Which her own clay shall cover, heaped and pent,
Rider and horse--friend, foe,--in one red burial blent!


Written in a Choultry, situate in a very desert Tract, by Cuptain

T. A. Anderson, H. N. 19th Fooi.

Within this Choultry's ample space,

way- y-worn traveller's resting-place,
Whose massy columns countless glow,
Reflected in the tank below,
Whose' en:lless porticos and halls,
Whose pillard domes, and echoing walls,
Its proud magnificence attest,
The child of poverty may rest!--
Here wealth gives no exclusive claiin,
No deference to a noble naine;
To all the race of man as free
As heaven's cerulean canopy.
Long may the pious fabric stand
Amid this boundless waste of sand ;
Like some blest island's friendly cove,
To those who on the ocean rove !

The veriest wretch, while shelter'd here,
Shrinks from no fellow-mortal's sneer,
Whose broken spirit ill could brook
A purse-proud landlord's scornful look ;
But, safe from noon's destructive force,
May pause upon his toilsome course,
With food and rest his frame renew,
His homeward journey to pursue;
And, at the welcome close of light,
When fire-flies take their evening flight,
And hover round each fragrant flow'r ;
When burning skies have lost their pow'r,
When with fresh hopes, and thankful heart,
He girds his loins in act to part,
Warın from his soul how many a pray’r
Will bless the generous founder's care!
Whom fancy pictures to the eye,
As passing faint and wearily
Along this drear and barren scene,
Where noontide rays smite fierce and keen,
And arid winds incessant sweep
The billows of this sandy deep,
No stunted palm, nor date-tree seen,
To yield a momentary screen,
No hut his languid linıbs to rest,
Tho' sore by toil and thirst opprest!

In such a scene of dread and woc,
Well might he make a solemn vow,
That if some Mercy-loving Pow'r
Should guard him in that evil hour,
To him a stately fune should rise,
A refuge from these wrathful skies,
A monument of gratitude
Amid this fiery solitude !
Perhaps the prayer was not in vain,
And hence this fabric decks the plain.
And if, as old traditions say,
The spirit, paried from its clay,
Shall still with former feelings throng
Round scenes and objects lov'd so long,
How must it gratify his shade,
To hear the homage hourly paid,
To hear the fainting traveller cry,
With throbbing breast, and tear-dimm'd eve,
“ A thousand blessings on the hand
" That first these sacred turrets plannid,
And plac'd this kind asylum here,
“ The lone way-faring man to cheer !''
England ! my country! tho' thou art
Entwin'd around my very heart,
Canst thou the solemn truth deny,
A truth impress'd on every eye,
That while one stranger houseless lies
Beneath thine ever-varying skies,
Thou art in charity outdone
By Asia's rude, untutor'd son !

Batticaloa, Oct. 1815.


Versisieil from Sir John Malcolm's History of Persia.


Keen blew the sleety gale, the scene was drear,
One sheet of white the hills and plains appear,
Vast blocks of ice obstruct the rapid floods,
and hills of snow conceal the sable woods,
Nor bird, nor beast, nor living thing was seen,
Nor flower, nor fruit, nor blade of herbage green ;
All Nature knew the appointed time of rest,
And sheltered, slept in earth's maternal breast.


Man's heart alone no change of season knows,
And proud ambition stoops not to repose !
The tyrant's troops, regardless of the blast,
Blacken with countless hordes the silvery waste.
High on his Tartar steed the conqueror rode.
And led his myriads o'er the frozen flood ;
When lo! amid a realm of subject snows,
In awful pride, gigantic Winter rose.
His hand, with arrows filled, was lifted high,
A ghastly gleam was in his frozen eye ;
Like some vast mountain his stupendous form,
His voice the howling of the Alpine storm.
It lacked the melody of living breath,
And chill'd the spirit as the voice of Death.
“ Behold the mighty conqueror, who defies,
“Not man alone, but these inclement skies.
Yet though thy dreadful warriors onward ride,
“ Nor fawn the elements, to sooth thy pride,
" Round thy warm linibs my icy robe 1 cast,
“I give thee to the snow, the hail, the blast;
“ Yun hill-the Spirit of the Storm is there,
And bids thee, tyrant, stop thy rash career.
No longer shalt thou wrap the world in flame;
“ Art thou a spirit of vengeance ? I the same.
“ Slaves to subdue, we use our power alike,
“ When baneful stars in dire conjunction strike.
“ How terrible their force! but on! be bold !
“Make earth's best region desolate and cold,
“ Then in the impotence of fury pire,
To find at length thy blasts less keen than mine.
“If thou canst glory in unnumbered bands,
“That waste, destroy, o'erwhelm the fairest lands,
“With heavenly aid my stores as widely sweep,

Thy lance is keen, my arrow strikes as deep!
And on thy head, by Him that governs all,
“ The deadliest venom of my wrath shall full,
“Not all thy fires, thyself, thine host shali save
“ From the cold sleep, the tempest's icy grave.”


From Thouglits on Wheels," a Poen by J. Montgomery.

I Love Thee, O my native ISLE !
Dear as my mother's earliest smile,
Sweet as my father's voice to me

Is all I hear and all I see ;



« PreviousContinue »