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Another of Leyden's fine lyrics is that to the Evening Star : How sweet thy modest light to view, fair star, to love and lovers dear! While trembling on the falling dew, like beauty shining through a tear.
* Thine are the soft, enchanting hours when twilight lingers o'er the
plain, And whispers to the closing flowers, that soon the sun will rise again. Thine is the breeze, that, murmuring bland as music, wafts the
lover's sigh, And bids the yielding heart expand in love's delicious ecstasy. Fair star! though I be doom'd to prove that rapture's tears are mix'd
with pain, Ah, still I feel 'tis sweet to love ! but sweeter to be loved again!
BEAttie's fine stanzas, descriptive of a morning landscape, commence thus :
But who the melodies of morn can tell ? —
The wild brook babbling down the mountain side ;
The pipe of early shepherd dim descried
In the lone valley, echoing far and wide,
The hollow murmur of the ocean tide,
Crowned with her pail, the tripping milkmaid sings;
Down the rough slope the ponderous wagon rings;
Through rustling corn the hare, astonished, springs ;
Deep mourns the turtle in sequestered bower,
This sketch of English pastoral life reproduces, with daguerreotype effect, the scenes of half a century ago, before the rail-track had superseded the rustic country road and the slow stage-coach.
The following stanza was a favorite with Dr. Chalmers :
Oh! how canst thou renounce the boundless store
Of charms which nature to her votary yields !
The pomp of groves, the garniture of fields :
All that the genial ray of morning gilds,
All that the mountain's sheltering bosom shields,
CHATTERTON," that marvellous boy who perished in his pride,” was amusing himself one day, in company with a friend, reading the epitaphs in St. Pancras Churchyard. He was so deep in thought, that as he walked on, not perceiving a grave that was just dug, he tumbled into it. His friend, observing his situation, ran to his assistance, and, as he helped him out, told him, in a jocular manner, he was happy in assisting at the resurrection of genius. Poor Chatterton smiled, and, taking his companion by the arm, replied, “ My dear friend, I feel the sting of a speedy dissolution. I have been at war with the grave for some time, and find it not so easy to vanquish it as I imagined. We can find an asylum to hide from every creditor but that." His friend endeavoured to divert his thoughts from the gloomy reflection : but what will not melancholy and adversity combined subjugate? In three days after, this neglected and disconsolate youth of genius put an end to his existence by poison, or, as some think, his miseries were completed by starvation.
When only fourteen years of age, he published his first production in a newspaper; it purported to be from manuscripts by one Rowley, a monk of the fifteenth century. Horace Walpole detected the fabrication, and the exposure of the literary fraud entailed upon poor Chatterton neglect and severe exposure to want and suffering. His remarkable genius was unaccompanied by moral principle, and hence his desertion, and the melancholy termination of his brief and hapless career. In his native city, Bristol, as if to atone for this neglect, a splendid monument has been recently erected to his memory.
As a specimen of his antique verse, we extract the following lines on Spring, modernized in the orthography :
The budding Aoweret blushes at the light,
The meads be sprinkled with the yellow hue,
The fresh young cowslip bendeth with the dew;
The ruddy welkin shineth to the eyne,
Young ivy round the door-posts doth entwine ;
The Lines on the Burial of Sir John Moore, by the Rev. CHARLES Wolfe, Byron on one occasion pronounced little inferior to the best Odes the age had produced. This noble poem found its way to the press without the knowledge of its author : it was recited to a friend in Ireland, who was so much impressed with its force and beauty, that he requested a copy, which he sent to a local newspaper, with the author's initials. It soon created a great sensation, and for a long time its authorship was a matter of much speculation. Here are the stanzas :
Not a drum was heard, not a funeral note,
As his corse to the rampart we hurried ;
O’er the grave where our hero we buried
The sods with our bayonets turning;
And the lantern dimly burning.
No useless coffin enclosed his breast,
But he lay like a warrior taking his rest,
With his martial cloak around him.
Few and short were the prayers we said,
And we spoke not a word of sorrow ;
And we bitterly thought of the morrow.
We thought, as we hollowed his narrow bed,
And smoothed down his lonely pillow,
And we far away on the billow!
Lightly they'll talk of the spirit that's gone,
And o'er his cold ashes upbraid him ;
In the grave where a Briton has laid him.
But half of our heavy task was done,
When the clock struck the hour for retiring;
That the foe was sullenly firing.
Slowly and sadly we laid him down,
From the field of his fame fresh and gory ;
But we left him alone with his glory!
R. H. Wilde is the author of this clever sonnet to The MockingBird :
Wing'd mimic of the woods! thou motley fool!
Who shall thy gay buffoonery describe ?
Pursue thy fellows still with jest and gibe.
Wit, sophist, songster, Yorick of thy tribe,