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stillness lies! Thou hast the starry gems, the burning gold, won from ten thousand royal argosies. Sweep o'er thy spoils, thou wild and wrathful main ; earth claims not these again! -Yet more, the Depths have more! Thy waves have rolled above the cities of a world gone by! Sand hath filled up the palaces of old, sea-weed o'ergrown the halls of revelry! Dash o'er them, Ocean! in thy scornful play: man yields them to decay ! -Yet more! the Billows and the Depths have more! High hearts and brave are gathered to thy breast! They hear not now the booming waters roar, the battle-thunders will not break their rest : keep thy red gold and gems, thou stormy grave-give back the true and brave!
-Give back the lost and lovely! those for whom the place was kept at board and hearth so long; the prayer went up through midnight's breathless gloom, and the vain yearning woke 'midst festal song! Hold fast thy buried isles, thy towers o’erthrown,-but all is not thine own! -To thee the love of woman hath gone down; dark flow thy tides o'er manhood's noble head, o'er youth's bright locks and beauty's flowery crown ;-yet must thou hear a voice—“Restore the Dead !" Earth shall reclaim her precious things from thee: “Restore the Dead, thou Sea !"
XXXI. --THE COMMON LOT.-James Montgomery.
ONCE, in the flight of ages past, there lived a man; and who was he? Mortal! howe'er thy lot be cast, that man resembled thee. Unknown the region of his birth ; the land in which he died, unknown: his name has perished from the earth : this truth survives alone;—that joy, and grief, and hope, and fear, alternate triumphed in his breast: his bliss, and woema smile, a tear: oblivion hides the rest. The bounding pulse, the languid limb, the changing spirit's rise and fall; we know that these were felt by him, for these are felt by all. He suffered-but his pangs are o'er; enjoyed—but his delights are fled; had friends—his friends are now no more; had foes— his foes are dead. He loved—but whom he loved, the grave hath lost in its unconscious womb: 0, she was fair! but nought could save her beauty from the tomb. He sawwhatever thou hast seen ; encountered—all that troubles thee; he was
-whatever thou hast been; he is—what thou shalt be! The rolling seasons, day and night, sun, moon, and stars, the earth and main,-erewhile his portion,-life and light; to him exist in vain. The clouds and sunbeams, o'er his eye that once their shades and glory threw, have left, in yonder silent sky, no vestige where they flew. The annals of the human race, their ruine since the world began, of him afford no other trace than this,—THERE LIVED A MAN!
To him who, in the love of Nature, holds communion with her visible forms, she speaks a various language: for his gayer hours, she has a voice of gladness, and a smile, and eloquence of beauty; and she glides into his darker musings, with a mild and gentle sympathy, that steals away their sharpness ere he is aware. When thoughts of the last bitter hour come like a blight over thy spirit; and sad images of the stern agony, and shroud, and pall, and breathless darkness, and the narrow house, make thee to shudder and grow sick at heart; go forth under the open sky, and list to Nature's teachings: while from all around,-earth, and her waters, and the depths of air-comes a still voice :
“Yet a few days, and thee the all-beholding sun shall see no more in all his course; nor yet in the cold ground, where thy pale form was laid with many tears, nor in the embrace of ocean, shall exist thy image. Earth, that nourished thee, shall claim thy growth. to be resolved to earth again; and, lost each human trace, surrendering up thine individual being, thou shalt go to mix for ever with the elements; to be a brother to the insensible rock; and to the sluggish clod, which the rude swain turns with his share and treads upon. The oak shall send his roots abroad and pierce thy mould.
“Yet not to thine eternal resting-place, shalt thou retire alone, nor couldst thou wish couch more magnificent. Thou shalt lie down with patriarchs of the infant world—with kings—the powerful of the earth—the wise—the good-fair forms—and hoary seers of ages past;—all in one mighty sepulchre. The hills, rock-ribbed, and ancient as the sun; the vales, stretching in pensive quietness between; the venerable woods; rivers, that move in majesty; and the complaining brooks, that make the meadows green; and, poured round all, old ocean’s gray and melancholy waste, --are but the solemn decorations all of the great tomb of man. The golden sun, the planets, all the infinite host of heaven, are shining on the sad abodes of Death, through the still lapse of ages. All that tread the globe are but a handful, to the tribes that slumber in its bosom. Take the wings of morning, and the Barcan desert pierce; or lose thyself in the continuous woods where rolls the Oregon, and hears no sound save his own dashings—yet the dead are there ; and millions, in those solitudes, since first the flight of years began, have laid them down in their last sleep: the dead reign there alone! So shalt thou rest:-and what if thou shalt fall unnoticed by the living, and no friend take note of thy departure ? All that breathe will share thy destiny. The gay will laugh when thou art gone; the solemn brood of care plod on; and each one, as before, will chase his favourite phantom : yet all these shall leave their mirth and their employments, and shall come and make their bed with thee. As the long train of ages glides away, the sons of men,—the youth in life's green spring, and he who goes in the full strength of years; matron and maid; the bowed with age; the infant in the smiles and beauty of its innocent life cut off, -shall, one by one, be gathered to thy side, by those who, in their turn, shall follow them.
“So live, that,—when thy summons comes to join the innumerable caravans that move to the pale realms of shade, where each shall take his chamber in the silent halls of Death,-thou go, not like the quarry-slave at night scourged to his dungeon; but, sustained and soothed by an unfaltering trust, approach thy grave like one who wraps the drapery of his couch about him, and lies down to pleasant dreams.”
XXXIII. HYMN BEFORE SUNRISE IN THE VALE OF CHAMOUNI. —
Coleridge. Hast thou a cha rm to stay the morning-star in his steep course ?—so long he seems to pause on thy bald, awful head, O sovran Blanc! The Arve and Arvéiron at thy base rave ceaselessly: but thou, most awful form! risest from forth the silent sea of pines, how silently! Around thee and above, deep is the air and dark, substantial-black, an ebon mass : methinks thou piercest it, as with a wedge! But when I look again, it is thine own calm home, thy crystal shrine, thy habitation from eternity!—0 dread and silent mount! I gazed upon thee, till thou, still present to the bodily sense, didst vanish from my thought: entranced in prayer, I worshipped the Invisible alone.
Yet, like some sweet beguiling melody, so sweet we know not we are listening to it, thou, the meanwhile, wast blending with my thought, yea, with my life and life's own secret joy;
till the dilating soul enrapt, transfused into the mighty vision passing, there, as in her natural form, swelled vast to heaven.
Awake, my soul! not only passive praise thou owest! not alone these swelling tears, mute thanks and secret ecstasy! Awake, voice of sweet song! Awake, my heart, awake! green vales and icy cliffs, all join my hymn!
Thou first and chief, sole sovran of the vale! 0, struggling with the darkness all the night, and visited all night by troops of stars, or when they climb the sky, or when they sink! Companion of the morning-star at dawn, thyself earth's rosy star, and of the dawn co-herald! wake, O wake, and utter praise !-Who sank thy sunless pillars deep in earth ? Who filled thy countenance with rosy light? Who made thee parent of perpetual streams ?
And you, ye five wild torrents fiercely glad! who called you forth from night and utter death ; from dark and icy caverns called you forth, down those precipitous, black, jagged rocks, for ever shattered, and the same for ever? Who gave you your invulnerable life, your strength, your speed, your fury, and your joy; unceasing thunder and eternal foam ? And who commanded (and the silence came), “ Here let the billows stiffen, and have rest ?”
Ye ice-falls ! ye that from the mountain's brow adown enormous ravines slope amain-torrents, methinks, that heard a mighty voice, and stopped at once amid their maddest plunge ! motionless torrents! silent cataracts !-who made you glorious as the gates of heaven, beneath the keen, full moon ? Who bade the sun clothe you with rainbows? Who, with living flowers of loveliest blue, spread garlands at your feet ? God! Let the torrents, like a shout of nations, answer! and let the ice-plains echo, God!—God! Sing, ye meadowstreams, with gladsome voice! ye pine-groves, with your soft and soul-like sounds! And they, too, have a voice, yon piles of snow, and in their perilous fall shall thunder, God!
Ye living flowers that skirt the eternal frost! Ye wild goats sporting round the eagle's nest! Ye eagles, playmates of the mountain-storm! Ye lightnings, the dread arrows of the clouds! Ye signs and wonders of the element! Utter forth God, and fill the hills with praise !
Once more, hoar mount, with thy sky-pointing peaks, oft from whose feet the avalanche, unheard, shoots downward, glittering through the pure serene into the depth of clouds that veil thy breast—thou, too, again, stupendous mountain ! thou, that, as I raise my head, awhile bowed low in adoration, upward from thy base slow travelling, with dim eyes suffused with tears, solemnly seemest, like a vapoury cloud, to rise before me,-rise, () ever, rise! rise like a cloud of incense from the earth! Thou kingly spirit, throned among the hills, thou dread ambassador from earth to heaven; great hierarch! tell thou the silent sky, and tell the stars, and tell yon rising sun, Earth, with her thousand voices, praises God!
XXXIV.-LINES ON REVISITING THE BANKS OF THE WYE.—
Wordsworth. Five years have passed; five summers, with the length of five long winters; and again I hear these waters, rolling from their mountain-springs, with a sweet inland murmur.
Once again do I behold these steep and lofty cliffs, which, on a wild secluded scene, impress thoughts of more deep seclusion, and connect the landscape with the quiet of the sky. The day is come when I again repose here, under this dark sycamore, and view these plots of cottage-ground, these orchard-tufts, which, at this season, with their unripe fruits, are clad in one green hue, and lose themselves among the woods and copses, nor disturb the wild green landscape. Once again I see these hedgerows, hardly hedgerows, little lines of sportive wood run wild; these pastoral farms, green to the very door; and wreaths of smoke sent up in silence from among the trees, with some uncertain notice, as might seem, of vagrant dwellers in the houseless woods, or of some hermit’s cave, where, by his fire, the hermit sits alone.
Though absent long, these forms of beauty have not been to me as is a landscape to a blind man's eye; but oft, in lonely rooms, and ʼmid the din of towns and cities, I have owed to them, in hours of weariness, sensations sweet, felt in the blood, and felt along the heart, and passing even into my purer mind with tranquil restoration-feelings, too, of unremembered pleasure; such, perhaps, as may have had no trivial influence on that best portion of a good man's life—his little, nameless, unremembered acts of kindness and of love. Nor less, I trust, to them I may have owed another gift of aspect more sublime; that blessed mood in which the burden of the mystery, in which the heavy and the weary weight of all this unintelligible world, is lightened ;—that serene and blessed mood in which the affections gently lead us on, until the breath of this corporeal frame, and even the motion of our