Imágenes de página
PDF
ePub

Their beds so various, and their spiry top,
Their horizontal form, and sides that slope,
Mysterious work of ages and of chance !
Sometimes thine eye shall trace, with curious glance,
The rude-formed circles of the hanging rock,
The black basaltes, the volcano's shock,
The granite, fashioned by the assiduous tide,
Whole beds of schist and marble's veiny pride ;
Pierce to their centre, drive into their breast,
Where God, and Man, and Nature, stand impressed.

Around these falling Alps dread whirlwinds rise,
Struck by whose distant blast the traveller dies.
Thus mighty states, oppressed with growing ills,
That slowly gather till their measure fills,
Sink down at length, in long-expected doom !
Tyre, Thebes, are lost ; in vain we look for Rome.
O native France ! the scene of many a woe,
How do thy sufferings bid mine eyes o’erflow !

CULTIVATION OF TREES. -GRAFTING. - SAP.

NATURE'S VARIED GARNITURE OF MOCNTAINS.

The goddess now, 'midst smiles of gladness seen, With flowers and verdure decks the happy scene ; Now bold and rough, disdaining every grace, Of ancient Chaos she preserves the trace ! There, as ashamed to rise upon the day, In modest streams the riv’let steals away ; Here the loud cataract foams adown the steep ; Here zephyrs softly kiss, or north winds sweep. Here orchards smile, volcanoes yawn along, Echoes the thunder, or the shepherd's song ; Here fertile vales with gladsome verdure crowned ; There richest produce waves along the ground ; Here naked rocks, like skeletons that show, Spring at their feet, and Winter on their brow.

Fatigued at length to tread this horrid scene, Descend once more upon the champaign green ; Near the bright stream, along the laughing vale, Where shrubs and fruits their mingled sweets exhale, Or flowers or trees, whose branches proudly bend, Their different bloom, their different race extend ; Through them what interest do your fields present ! Observe their varied colors, form, and bent; Their loves and marriage ; how the grafted shoot Corrects the wildness of the forest root ; Amends its fruits, bids loaded branches rise, And to your trees a race unknown supplies ! Mark too the sap, that, ere its process ends, In course alternate rises or descends; In active virtue, how its liquid power Creates the wood, the leaf, the fruit, and flower.

MOUNTS JURA AND MONTANVERTS DESCRIBED. Hail, pompous Jura ! hail, Montanverts dread ! Where ice and snow in heaps enormous spread ; Where Winter's fane, that dazzling columns raise, Like changing prisms, a thousand tints displays. Its rugged sides, with azure dies that glow, Defy the sun from whence its colors flow. Rich gold or purple o'er the mass is shown, While Winter, seated on his icy throne, Exults to see the God who lights the morn Shine on his palace, and his court adorn. Amidst these wonders, strewed by Nature's hand, These striking pictures, and these prospects grand, Still o'er the scene imagination glows, Nor flags the thought, nor does the eye repose.

HERBS, THEIR PROPERTIES AND VIRTUES. -- CHANTILLY. —

MENDOX. - MARLI. The various herbs, that countless deck the plain, Where scarce the fool a haughty glance will deign, Do they no profit, no attraction, show? The God who formed the world made them to grow. Their powers mysterious let thy knowledge sift, Their useful poisons, and their healing gift. Where'er they rise, no part of earth is lost, Since e'en the desert may its beauty boast. 0! may thy footsteps still with pleasure trace The fragrant dwelling of this humble race ; Whether you tread Chantilly's woody pride, Rich Mendon's brow, or Marli's flowery side.

BOTANIZING WITH FRIENDS. — JUSSIEU.

THE AVALANCHE DESCRIBED. -RUIN OF STATES GRADUAL.

Woe to the mortal who with hardy tread Shall tempt the horrors of these mountains dread ; Unless the fire-fraught tube has tried the heap Of gloomy frosts that hang upon the steep. What grand effects arise from causes light ! The bird, oft perched upon the mountain's height, Loosens a grain of snow ; whose pigmy ball, New force acquiring in its rapid fall, Sees gathering snows around its circle cling, And every move an added burden bring. Trembles the air, when now, with dreadful roar, Of many a winter past the gathered store, Bounding from hill to hill, from rock to rock, Earth's inmost bosom trembling at the shock, Destroys whole hamlets, sweeps away the wood, Nor leaves the trace where once the city stood.

Wouldst thou these visits more delightful make, Let some choice friends the pleasing task partake. With ready zeal they at thy call unite, Enhance thy joys, and make thy labor light. But 't is not here the sound of sylvan war, The horn and trumpet echoing from afar ! Graze on, ye herds, amidst your peaceful shade, Nor you, ye feathered songsters, be dismayed ; They hurt not you : in innocent pursuit, They search the varied plant, or tree, or root ; From wood or mead, from mountain and from plain, The herbal waits its present to obtain. The morning air, the freshness of the day, Calls Flora's students to their task away, While Jussieu leads them, eager to explain Each part that forms the vegetable reign : Sometimes of blended plants they form with art A specious whole, from many a borrowed part ;

Mark well the small and delicate degrees,
Where changing instinct, through each living link,
Or towers to man, or to the plant shall sink.

THE MUSEUM OF NATURAL SCIENCE.
With added gust such pleasures wouldst thou taste,
In one small circle be these objects placed ;
Three adverse reigns, astonished to unite,
At once shall give their subjects to thy sight :
Where all their own repository find,
Ranged in departinents, or in classes joined ;
The world and nature, in abridgment shown,
Of endless pleasure make the source thy own.

THE COLLECTION OF A CABINET OF MINERALS.

With smiling goodness be the work receives,
And to each plant its borrowed fragment gives.
In these researches emulous to shine,
O'er every flower with ardor they incline,
The petal, stamen, and the pistil, trace
Of common blossoms or of unknown race ;
The first well pleased you mark with grateful sight,
And view the last through hope's bewitching light:
The one an ancient friend, whose face you love ;
A stranger one, you must in future prove.
DELIGHTS OF THE BOTANTST.-ROUSSEAU AND THE PERVANCHE.

What sudden pleasure, when some object rare,
Confined peculiar to one soil and air,
More precious far from expectation grown,
By some blessed turn upon the sight is thrown !
The pervanche so, with us that never grew,
Its long-sought blossom gave to Rousseau's view ;
He marks the treasure with an eager glance !
"Great God ! the pervanche !' and his hands advanco,
Sudden to seize the prey : not more delight
Feels the fond lover at his mistress' sight.

THE PICNIC. Now nature calls; and see the rustic meal, New force that gives, suspend a while their zeal. Near the cool bank that winding streamlets lave, Lo! Bacchus fresh'ning in the Naiad's wave! The trees a ceiling ; songs the birds afford ; The horizon pictures ; and the sod their board : The cherry rich, the strawberry of the woods, With search successful that their care pursued, The egg, and a pricot of yellow die, And milky bowl, the frugal meal supply ; While, roused to hunger by the pleasing task, Their tasto no aid from Meot's 1 art shall ask. Their songs to Cybele and Flora sound, With endless youth and endless beauty crowned ! Those nothings leaving, formed by Fashion's breath, By veoring Fashion, too, consigned to death, They tell of God, of gifts the boundless source, The world's great secrets, and of Nature's course.

THE HERBARIUM. - NATURAL HISTORY. - INSTINCT. At length they rise, and o'er the fields anew From wood to mead or hill their search pursue ; At night the herbal, on its ready leaves, Each conquered plant triumphantly receives. Yet to these humbler tribes has prudent Heaven Imperfect life and narrowed instinct given. The brute creation, nearer to our own, Less strangers too, with happier ease are known. Whether as subjects or as foes they live, Or with their friendship their attendance give, Their tribes unnumbered trace with curious eye, Whether in woods or darksome dens they lie ; The light-winged guests, that in your branches perch, Or peaceful life, in fold or hamlet, search ; Those that attack, or wait the sylvan fight, Those beneath earth, or on the mountain's height. And while thy search their arts and manners sees,

1 A famous restaurateur of Paris.

But check the progress of thy vasty toil; First choose thy objects from thy native soil, Where, daily seen, they own thee for their lord, And, born with thee, shall greater joy afford : Of varied mines, in earth's recesses spread, Take the bitumen from its native bed ; Each soil, and salt ; the stone, whose form contains A secret fire, that preys upon its veins ; Each colored metal, and the crystal's pride, The rock's rich offspring, lucid as the tide ; The clay, whose substance when the flames shall try, For polished lustre with the glass may vie ; The hardening wood, its native form that leaves, And from the wave a stony coat receives ; Whether the slime around its surface grow, Or to its pores petrific moisture go : In short, each object, that derives its birth From fire and air, from water and from earth. THE COLLECTION OF MOSSES, ETC. - VAREC ; LICHES ;

AGARIC, PUNK OR AMADOC ; NENUPHAR. More curious still, more anxious to explain The fertile stores of vegetable reign, There let me see, in artful union spread, The sea-born varec show its colored head ; The creeping lichen, that for friendly aid Clings to the bark, beneath the oaken shade ; The potent agaric, to wounds applied, That stops the gushing of the sanguine tide ; Whose spongy substance to its bosom takes The crackling spark, as from the flint it breaks. With them the nenuphar, from humid site, The bane of pleasure, foe to Love's delight ; Those plants and boughs, that swarming life contain, The wondrous subjects of each rival reign.

1

THE ZOOLOGICAL DEPARTMENT OF THE CABINET. -EAGLE ;

BEAR; RHINOCEROS ; TURTLE, ETC. The living world, that equal change may know, Shall greater charms from happy contrast show : One spot shall throw upon the astonished eye The royal eagle, and the pigmy fly ; Those birds that here the circling seasons stay ; Those that ere winter wing their flight away : The shapeless bear, the roebuck's graceful height, The slow-paced turtle, and the squirrel light : The beast whose sides a shelly crust defends : Or o'er whose back, in vaulted form, it bends :

Here different scales the fish and snake denote :
Here the rough hedgehog, and the rat's smooth coat:
The fish whose small gondola stems the tide :
The crane that sails without the magnet's guide :
The mimic parrot, and the ape's address,
That sounds or gestures of mankind express :
Those tribes that stray not from their dark abode,
And those which ramble from their home abroad :
Those birds with oars, and fish with wings supplied,
The doubtful citizens of earth or tide.
THE ENTOMOLOGICAL DEPARTMENT OF THE PRIVATE CABINET.

- WORMS ; CATERPILLARS; BUTTERFLIES ; FRUIT-INSECTS ; TAPEWORM; CYNIPS ; NUTGALLS ; SILK-WORMS; BEE, ETC.

Ye countless insects here shall refuge gain, You, the last link of Nature's living chain ; Whether you mount on wings, or humbly creep, Swarm in the air, or wanton on the deep.

Here then each worm, each caterpillar place ; His son, gay upstart, blushing at his race ; Insects of every rank, of every die, That dwell in marshes, or in flow'rets lie ; Or those that, digging for a secret dome, Deep in the budding leaf have fixed their home ; The fruit-tree's foe ; or worm, more murderous still, Whose living folds the human bosom fill ; The spider, too, whose webs our wall o'erspread ; The fly that builds, or spins the fine-drawn thread ; Those in whose golden web their tomb is wove ; Those that in secret light the torch of love ; The fly whose life throughout the year extends, Or given at morning with the evening ends ;

Thy zeal to gain what Nature's walk bestows,
At each new conquest still more ardent grows.
A plant or stone that meets the searching eye,
A smiling flow'ret, or some long-sought fly,
New charms shall give ; and now, by fancy's aid,
Each class, each province, to the mind portrayed,
That long the new-found treasure to receive,
Through all her works shall Nature's imago give.
The eye, the thought, shall rove in endless change,
With busy fancy ever on the range ;
E'en when the wintry frosts thy steps retain,
Eager she hastens to the well-known plain ;
O'er mead and wood she wings her rapid flight,
Till, rising sudden on her watchful sight,
Some pebble rare, or shrub, or blushing flower,
Chains her attention, and suspends her power.

COLLECTIONS IN NATURAL HISTORY FORY PLEASANT

SOUVENIRS.

And when compelled thy loved retreat to leave, What added pleasure shall the country give, When every landscape to the mind is brought By fond remembrance and illusive thought ! Here the rough billows, as they ebbed or flowed, Some fucus rare or unknown shell bestowed ; There from the bosom of the teeming ground The fragment rare of some rich mine was found ; Or there some insect spread the fluttering wing, Or, yet unseen, the gaudy child of Spring, Somo painted butterfly, with eager haste, Seized on some flower, was in your closet placed, That, to his kindred joined, filled up the space That vacant stood, and made complete his race.

WONDERFUL CONTRIVANCES BESTOWED ON INSECTS.

ORDER AND NEATNESS INDISPENSABLE IN A CABINET. - PRE

SERVED ANIMALS SHOCLD HAVE A NATURAL POSTURE.

Come, all ye tribes that through the world are

strewed, Whose endless race is without end renewed ; In all the lustre of your riches dressed, [crest, Your flowers, your pearls, your rubies, and your Those guardian sheaths, those horny cases, bring That shield the texture of your fine-wrought wing; Those mirrors, prisms, with labored beauty graced, Your well-formed eyes by skilful Nature placed ; Some thickly sown their microscopes display, While some, like telescopes, extend the ray. Show me the distaff, auger, and the dart, Arms for your combat, or the tools of art ; Those wary horns, that, branching o'er the eye, With careful feet the doubtful pathway try ; Your drums and clarions nearer let me know, That speak whene'er with rage or love you glow; Or leading heroes to the embattled ground, To charge, to danger, and to conquest, sound ; Each secret spring, each organ, let me trace, That mock the proudest arts of human race ; Completest toil! from endless source that rose, Each worth a world ; for each the Godhead shows.

Where'er thou goest, thy treasures too shall go ; Yet on these treasures care and taste bestow : Let happy order through your closets reign; But most should neatness, simple still and plain, That e'en to Want a smiling face can give, Through every class and every canton live. Each bird and beast, with careful eye, observe ; Let each his posture and his air preserve, His look and mien ; perched on the branchy height, The bird should seem to meditate his fight; The weasel show me, with his roguish face, His lengthened body, and of narrow space ; The fox, with downward look and wily air, Some secret ambush in his thoughts should bear. To nature thus new beauty shalt thou give, That after death shall even seem to live.

GOOD AND BAD TASTE IN COLLECTIONS OF ANIMALS.

XATURE PRESENTS PERPETUAL NOVELTY TO HER INVESTI

GATORS.

Those monstrous sights that nature violate Leave to the closets of the rich and great ; The misshapod foetus ; forms with double head ; Those bones gigantic ; and the abortion dread, Betwixt nonentity and being bred : The mummy, too, in nature's guise that laid Disputes with Death the conquest he has made.

Three reigns distinct shall thus confess thy sway, Where new-found tribes for daily entrance pray.

And gather in his song ; whose rival art
With Nature's self shall equal joy impart.
Begone, ye puny bards, whose irksome lay
What oft was better said again must say !
Insipid rhymers ! has your hackneyed strain
Not yet culled all the sweets of Flora's reign ?
Still must we hear the bounding of your sheep?
Still to the murmurs of your streamlet sleep?
Still must the wanton zephyr kiss the rose,
Whose opening buds their blushing tints disclose ?
When shall the echo of your numbers cease,
And let the sylvan echo sleep in peace ?
So poor the strains, that Nature's charms rehearse!

Hadst thou some favorite bird, some dog beloved, Through all your griefs that has his friendship

proved ? 0! ne'er consign him to earth's darksome womb With rites that mock the honors of the tomb ; This simple refuge to his relics give ; In your Elysium graceful let him live !

THE AUTHOR'S CAT ; CELEBRATED BY LA FONTAINE. There would I see him, with thy form, displayed, Thou whom La Fontaine's song had deathless made, Felina, dear, that, single to thy race, Showed the dog's fondness with thy native grace ; Whose wiles or pride, with tender softness joined, Lost the self-love imputed to thy kind ; There would I see thee, as before I've seen, With downy covering, and with graceful mien, Affecting absence, or pretending sleep, Watching the fly, or on the rat to leap, Whose deadly tooth shall never author spare, But gnaw alike Du Bartas ' or Voltaire ; Or as I've seen thee, with persuasive art, Purr round my dinner, and demand thy part; With vaulted back, and tail that waved aloft, Bring to my soothing hand thy ermine soft ; Or else disturb, with thousand wanton bounds, The hand and pen from which thy praise redounds.

THE RURAL POETRY OF HORACE EULOGIZED.

0! how does Horace, in appropriate verse, And varied numbers teeming with delight, Describe the poplar and the pine-tree's height, Beneath whose pale and darksome boughs entwined, A hospitable shade the swain shall find, And quaffing sit; while bubbling at his side The rolling streamlet winds its rapid tide! Nature with him in endless bloom behold ! Thy song, scarce born, as Nature's self is old !

BEACTIES UXFELT CANNOT BE TRULY PAINTED - TINSEL OF

COCKNEY POETS.

CANTO I V.

ARGUMENT.

Beauties of the country. Hints to the poets of nature.

Horace. City poets, affectation of. Minuteness of description ridiculous. Nature, different scenes of. South America. Africa, horrors of. Winter near the pole. Landscape, man the life of. Roebuck, horse, etc., description of. Beasts, qualities of. Homer. Lucretius. Virgil. Heifer, sorrows of one. Plants, instinct of. Author revisiting his native country. Paris, description of, crimes of. Country, author's wish for. Poets, directions to. Virgil, address to. Conclusion.

To paint the country, it must first be loved ; Our city poets, by its charms unmoved, Whose courtly muse has rarely left the town, Paint what they've never loved, nor ever known : 0! ne'er did they, 'midst soft retreats, inhale Eve's gelid air, or morning's dewy gale ! Read but their song, and every line betrays The city-bard disguised in sylvan lays. With lavish hand, in richest words, they spread The crystal streamlet and the enamelled mead! Unless Aurora shine an opal throne, No morning beam upon the East is shown ! Sapphires and purple must her dress compose, And every flower she sheds a diamond grows ! They call on Tyre, Potosi, to supply The jonquil's color, or the rose's dye ; And Nature, best in simple garb arrayed, Must groan in loads of silver and brocade ; While pearls and rubies o'er her dress are placed, Their hand disfigures what it should have graced !

VARIOUS CHARMS OF THE LANDSCAPE.

ANECDOTE OF ZEUXIS AND THE PAINTER

Yes! the rich aspect of the flood and fields An endless source of brightest landscape yields ; I joy to see the skies, in azure pride, Reflected gayly in the azure tide ; The crystal waves in lucid sheets expand, Or wind in streamlets through the grassy land ; The darksome foliage of the wood profound ; The corn that sheds a yellow gleam around ; The valley green, with smiling produce gay, The deepened concave of its form display ; Those hills that lift their summit to the skies, While at their feet a boundless champaign lies ; As round the world the sun majestic goes, And o'er cach scene a golden coloring throws. BLESSEDNESS OF THE RURAL POET. INSIPIDITY OF IMITA

TORS. -HINTS TO THE POET OF NATURE. Blessed is the man, whose soul enjoys the sight; But he more blessed who sings the prospect bright. The scattered charms of forest and of mead Attend the summons of his tuneful reed, 1 A French poet, statesman, and captain ; now forgotten.

Painters and bards, by kindred ties allied, Let Zeuxis' words your several efforts guide : An upstart painter, emulous of fame, Would once portray the laughter-loving dame, With fruitless zeal ; no happy lines expressed The fleshy roundness of the well-formed breast ; The bust harmonious and voluptuous arms, Her lovely features and her graceful charms; But gold and jewels shone with lavish cost, And Venus lay in loads of drapery lost. * Rash fool, forbear,' the impatient Zeuxis said ; Instead of beauty, thou hast wealth portrayed.'

Her voice, in thunders or volcanoes dread, Bids the earth tremble to its lowest bed !

DIFFICULTY OF RENDERING JUSTICE TO THE BEAUTIES OF

NATURE.

MINUTE POETS SATIRIZED. Ye tasteless bards ! to you the worlds belong : That which you love alone should grace your song : Yet still descend not, in your mean pursuit, Those bards to imitate, whose care minute Prefers Linnæus to the Mantuan swain, And gives to trifling beauties lavish pain ; That to the microscope their object bring, And waste their pencils on an insect's wing. So novice artists, that with labored care, In female charms, describe the nails and hair, Leave brighter beauties by their art untraced, To paint a mole, beneath the bosom placed.

Ah! who shall seize, in all their varied light, The changing beauty of her prospects bright? Or paint her works, with pomp sublimely crowned, From the high mountain to the vale profound ; From the proud woods, whose heads the sky assail, To the low violet that loves the dale ! TROPICAL SCENERY. - THE AMAZOX, ORONOCO, AND

LA PLATA. -THE ANDES. Now let thy muse, where grander scenes invite, O'er the wide ocean wing her daring flight To other climes, beneath whose fervid airs A richer garb each circling season wears ; 'Midst the bright lustre of this ardent zone, Let Amazon and Oronoque be shown, The mount's bold sons, that rival ocean's wave, As half the universe they proudly lave, [hurled, And drain those summits, whence their stream is The vastest heights, that tower above the world ! And near whose sides, in brightest verdure dressed, Birds, out of number, bathe the downy breast.

DESCRIPTION OF THE GREAT RIVERS OF SOUTH AMERICA AND

THE PRODI'OTS OF THEIR BANKS. - COMPARED WITH THOSE OF EVROPE.

RCRAL POETS SHOULD GIVE BREADTH TO THEIR PICTURES.

Enlarge thy style : if e'er by morning's light, With glance extended from the mountain's height, Thine

eye has wandered o'er the scene below, Where woods and stream a varied landscape show ; Where uplands slope, or gleams the yellow grain, Or flocks unnumbered whiten all the plain ; Or traced the limits of th' horizon blue, Or circling hills, that fly before the view ; Such be your model : let your talents give These mingled beauties through your song to live. LET POETS DESCRIBE NATURE AS SHE IS ; REGULAR, OR

FANTASTIC. The practised painter may, with skilful art, Bid striking objects from the back-ground start. Wouldst thou for nature all thy efforts use, Let not a random view these objects choose : Let untaught fools, in fancied skill, declare That nature still is regularly fair ! Yon trees majestic, ta pering to the skies, Let them (I grant) beneath your pencil rise : But yonder oak, whose trunk so wildly bends, And o'er the desert-rock its arms extends ; Whose boughs fantastic, and of foliage rude, And shapeless mass with verdure thinly strewed, Their rougher beauty to the sight display, Has equal claim to live amidst your lay.

Now, slow and deep, in state majestic spread, Calm glides the water o'er its silent bed ! Now rush the billows through each trembling shore, Fatiguing echo with the dreadful roar ! Their weight enormous, and their thundering sound, Seems hurled from heaven, not rolling on the

ground !
Paint the rich scenes, their various birds and flowers,
Where heaven its tints in gay luxuriance showers ;
The deepened bosom of the boundless wood,
Gloomy as night, that since the world has stood ;
Those trees and fields, that law nor master own ;
Those orchards bright, that grew from chance

alone ;
United flocks, and corn that ne'er was sown !
Paint all the wonders of this distant land,
Where Nature towers, majestically grand !
Compared to which, our Apennine 's a hill;
Our forests, copse ; our Danube, but a rill !

APOSTROPHE TO NATCRE. - HER UNTIRING VARIETY.
0, Nature ! power sublime, yet lovely still,
That e'en her horrors can with beauty fill ;
That now the bosom melts to soft delight,
Now, changed her aspect, shivers with affright;
Now, young

she treads the laughing vale,
Her spreading garments fluttering to the gale,
While from their folds the dewy colors flow,
And flowers and fruits beneath her footsteps grow ;
The morning sunbeams from her smile arise ;
And in her breath the balmy zephyr sighs ;
The tuneful song, that bids the wood rejoice,
And murmuring streamlet, are her changing voice;
Now, o'er some wild enthroned, 'midst mountains
Where wintry stores in icy heaps appear, [drear,
With antique pines her towering brow is crowned,
That in the whirlwind clash with awful sound,
Whilst round her sides the foamy torrent streams,
And in her eye the fiery lightning gleams,

and gay,

NATURAL FEATURES OF AFRICA. --SANDS. - SERPENTS.

WHIRLWINDS – WILD BEASTS. Now turn thy numbers from these fertile lands, And paint the mournful space of Afric sands ! Where arid fields, that never verdure knew, Or drank of limpid stream or falling dew, Burnt to the quick, forever thirst in vain, And fruitful life seems exiled from the plain ! Let the hot sky and burning soil conspire Tillume your pictures, and your numbers fire : Let the dread hydra, hissing through your song, In furrows roll his scaly rings along ; Or frightful dragon raise his crested head, (spread; While swelling venom through his veins shall

« AnteriorContinuar »