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TO THE MEMORY OF W. P. WATTS.
I think of all thy winning ways,
Thy frank but boisterous glee ;-
Thy arch sweet smiles,--thy coy delays,-
Thy step, so light and free,
Thy sparkling glance, and hasty run,
Thy gladness, when the task was done,
And gained thy mother's knee ;-
Thy gay, good-humoured, childish ease,
And all thy thousand arts to please !
Where are they now ?-And where, oh where,
The blooming cheek, so fresh and fair,
The lips, all sought to press? The open brow, and laughing eye, The heart, that leaped so joyously?
(Ah! had we loved them less !) Yet there are thoughts can bring relief And sweeten even this cup of grief.
What hast thou 'scaped ?-A thorny scene !
A wilderness of woe!
Where many a blast of anguish keen
Had taught thy tears to flow!
Perchance some wild and withering grief,
Had sered thy summer's earliest leaf,
In these dark bowers below!
Or sickening chills of hope deferred,
To strife thy gentlest thoughts had stirred !
What hast thou 'scaped ?-Life's weltering sea,
Whilst yet its gliding waves were free
From aught that marred repose !
Safe from the thousand throes of pain,-
Ere sin or sorrow breathed a stain
Upon thine opening rose !
And who can calmly think of this,
envy thee thy doom of bliss ?
I culled from home's beloved bowers,
To deck thy last long sleep, The brightest-hued, most fragrant flowers
That summer's dews can steep :The rose-bud-emblem meet—was there, The violet blue, and jasmine fair,
That drooping, seemed to weep; And, now, I add this lowlier spell :Sweets to the passing sweet ! Farewell !
Yet hath the morning sprinkled through the clouds
But half her tincture; and the soil of night
Hangs still upon the bosom of the air.
From out the purple portals of the East,
Peers the first dawn of day upon the world,
With dim, uncertain light. Huge clouds still wrap
The base of fiery Stromboli ;--and Night,
With her black waving pennons, lingers yet,
Far in the western hemisphere. Long trains
Of tremulous mist curtain the deep blue breast
Of Adria's waveless ocean.
In folds fantastically graceful, on
The glassy waters;-others, slowly wind
Their way in silvery circuitings to heaven;
And, as in mockery of the glance that strives
To trace their airy wanderings, dissolve,
Invisibly, whilst yet the gazer's eye
Strains its intensest nerve. Light breaks,
With giant stride, upon the earth, and breathes
The breath of life into the stagnant veins
Of slumber-locked creation. Yon white clouds,
That seem to rise like mountains from the sea,
Garbed with untrodden snows, suddenly grow
Radiant with streaks of gold ;-a deeper blush
Of crimson now pervades them, and the sun,
Lifting his orb above the wave, looks out
In glory on the world!
Hath wakened from her trance, and, shaking off
The night dews from her beauty, stands revealed
In rainbow-tinted loveliness to man.