Imágenes de página
PDF
ePub

The Hunter of the Prairies is another fine poem :

Ay, this is freedom !—these pure skies

Were never stained with village smoke : The fragrant wind, that through them Aies,

Is breathed from wastes by plough unbroke.

[graphic]

Here, with my rifle and my steed,

And her who left the world for me,
I plant me, where the red deer feed

In the green desert—and am free.
For here the fair savannas know

No barriers in the bloomy grass ;
Wherever breeze of heaven may blow,

Or beam of heaven mav glance, I pass.
In pastures, measureless as air,
The bison is my noble game ;

What-plantwewite this apple tree? Sweets for a hundred flowery uprings Co-load thi Mlaq wird's restless urug!, Whew, from the orchard "ow, he point Bu fragrauatirough ouer open doors.

of world of blosterug for the bee, Plaourt fer for Kiek girtí delat zoon, Porthw gladinfant sprigs of bloom; Wigslaut with the apple-true"

. William Culle Bryant, Roslyn, L. 3. Sukur irsko 1870."

The bounding elk, whose antlers tear

The branches, falls before my aim.
Mine are the river-fowl that scream

From the long stripe of waving sedge ;
The bear, that marks my weapon’s gleam,

Hides vainly in the forest's edge;
In vain the she-wolf stands at bay;

The brinded catamount, that lies
High in the boughs to watch his prey,

Even in the act of springing, dies.
With what free growth the elm and plane

Fling their huge arms across my way,
Gray, old, and cumbered with a train

Of vines, as huge, and old, and gray !

Here, from dim woods, the aged past

Speaks solemnly; and I behold
The boundless future in the vast

And lonely river, seaward rolled.

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

ma

rne

Another of Mr. Bryant's most admired productions is his Forest Hymn, commencing :

The groves were God's first temples. Ere man learned
To hew the shaft, and lay the architrave,
And spread the roof above them,--ere he framed
The lofty vault, to gather and roll back
The sound of anthems; in the darkling wood,
Amid the cool and silence, he knelt down,
And offered to the Mightiest solemn thanks
And supplication. For his simple heart
Might not resist the sacred influences
Which, from the stilly twilight of the place,
And from the gray old trunks that high in heaven

Mingled their mossy boughs, and from the sound
Of the invisible breath that swayed at once
All their green tops, stole over him, and bowed
His spirit with the thought of boundless power
And inaccessible majesty. Ah, why
Should we, in the world's riper years, neglect
God's ancient sanctuaries, and adore
Only among the crowd, and under roofs
That our frail hands have raised ? Let me, at least,
Here, in the shadow of this aged wood,
Offer one hymn—thrice happy, if it find
Acceptance in His ear.

“ The name of Leigh Hunt,” says Smiles, “is associated in our minds with all manner of kindness, love, beauty, and gentleness. He has given us a fresh insight into nature, made the fowers seem gayer, the earth greener, the skies more bright, and all things more full of happiness and blessing.” He has given us some fine poems. Here is one about the Flowers, with a touch of the quaintness of the elder poets :

ce

We are the sweet Aowers, born of sunny showers,

(Think, whene'er you see us, what our beauty saith); Utterance mute and bright, of some unknown delight,

We fill the air with pleasure by our simple breath :
All who see us, love us—we befit all places ;
Unto sorrow we give smiles,—and to graces, graces.
Mark our ways, how noiseless all, and sweetly voiceless,

Though the March winds pipe to make our passage clear ;
Not a whisper tells where our small seed dwells,

Nor is known the moment green when our tips appear. We thread the earth in silence, in silence build our bowers,And leaf by leaf in silence show, till we laugh a-top, sweet Aowers!

I

[ocr errors]

S

« AnteriorContinuar »