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fall on every side; no matter, he cheers them on. They hesitate for a moment; no matter, he leads them on again with greater vigour than before. He is wounded; no matter, a handkerchief round the wound, and he is once more forward. They are successful, the enemy is driven back, the victory is accomplished, the triumph is won, the shout runs through the ranks, a moment of unutterable joy succeeds, and then-a random shot pieces his brain, and he is in another world!

In the whole range of thought there is scarcely anything so strange and so appalling as this. We are accustomed, every one of us, to regard Death with a shudder, and mostly he is viewed with intense awe and apprehension. When we see him surely coming-when it is beyond doubt that but a very little while and he will lay his cold hand upon us has there ever lived the man who has not been obliged to summon to his aid, to enable him to refrain from showing the most abject fear, either every specious argument by which he has taught himself to believe that he simply ceases to be, or else every fraction of hope which may be within him that death will but bring richer life and the grave a brighter home? Depend upon it no man has ever yet looked death fairly in the face, thought of it, and tried to realise it without a tremendous effort. That in the case of the murderer, or the deeply hardened criminal, death as the possible consequence of an unlawful act may be but lightly glanced at, and so imperfectly grasped that it may exert comparatively but little deterring influence, we fully believe; but we are speaking now of those who, having a hope of something beyond death, have a wholesome fear of the period of its approach, or who at the least-whether their faith be much or little, or they have no faith whatever-view him, nevertheless, as a dark and doubtful foe, a mysterious and fearful adversary. All of these the Christian who meekly bows his head, the sceptic who affects to sneer, the disbeliever who attempts to look defiant-all, within them, feel a sickening fear when the great truth first forces itself upon the mind that the hour is actually at hand when to them the mighty secret shall be made known, and the vast mystery of an unexplored eternity be unveiled before them.

Now, if there be something so tremendous in this change, that in calmness and in quietude every source of courage is obliged to be eagerly laid hold of to enable men to bear them nobly through the final contest, is it not a thought painfully intense that of the fearful suddenness with which the stricken warrior passes hence? The deep peace of the dying chamber, the fervent prayer, the murmured hope, are scarce sufficient to sustain the most prepared Christian soldier through the last desperate struggle. It is amid the yell of the battle-field, in a scene where man's worst passions are displayed in their most awful blackness; it is while curses are rending the air; it is at a moment when everything around would seem almost to be emulating in horror the dire exhibition of lost souls which is to come hereafter; it is in an instant when there is nothing further from his own recollection than the existence of an eternal world; it is when his own hands have just ceased to shed blood, and when his own heart revels in the destruction which he has wrought; it is when mad excitement has gained a perfect mastery over him, when every thought and every feeling is saturated with earthly hope, when the faculties of mind and body are at their utmost strain, and one overwhelming idea alone is present, the

idea of victory, of fame, of honour-that, without the faintest warning or an instant's preparation, the whole scene changes, and in place of the gory battle-field, and the sights and sounds of the deadly struggle, there suddenly starts before this world's warrior the boundless regions of the unknown world, and he finds himself in the presence of the God of All.

And not alone. Rising from the blood-stained field, multitudes of disembodied spirits almost jostle (if the expression be allowable) in their upward flight. In company with the meek spirit which has gently quitted some worn tenement far away, in company with the devout spirit breathed forth amidst faintly-murmured prayers of priest and relative, in company with the infant spirit scarce received ere parted with, the bold, hot, furious spirits of the dauntless, reckless soldiery ascend to the mighty mansion wherein all are to be gathered.

How touching it was to read the description of the different attitudes in which the dead were found, and the different aspects they wore, after the battle of Inkerman. Some were kneeling, and had their arms stretched out, as though appealing against a blow-the fatal blow which rendered them insensible to another. Some looked dark and sullen. These mostly, we are told, had been bayoneted, and had died with a fearful pang. Others (where the bullet had brought instantaneous death) bore a calm and tranquil appearance, as though the destroyer had but gently touched them. Again, if we look at the ages of those killed, and find so many of them ranging between eighteen and thirty, a period when the life-blood runs so freely and so boldly, when naturally there is little thought of death, and so much of the sunshine and joy of existence, does not, for the moment at all events, every feeling merge in the bitter wail and lamentation over the foul work thus done?

And what is all this for? It is horrible to think that anything under heaven could give rise to so intolerable an evil as war. There is no redeeming feature about it, there is no point of view in which it can be regarded otherwise than as an unmitigated curse. Look at it how you may, it is a picture without the faintest gleam of light or cheerfulness. Take other mighty ills. The disastrous conflagration: it is a calamity, but, as a set-off, its consequence generally is the building better, handsomer, more convenient accommodation than that destroyed. The fell epidemic: its raging wakens us to many deficiencies in regard to the preservation of health which we heretofore have overlooked or lightly treated. But war brings not one solitary advantage; it brings scarcity, misery, bereavement; it is another name for suffering and woe. It may, nevertheless, be a necessary evil, and they may be quite guiltless who undertake it having justice on their side. We are fearful that, delightful as the notion may be, the time will never come when the voice of the world at large will be so against war that for any two nations to proceed to such extremity will be impossible. We have no faith in the proposition that such an end can be attained. On the other hand, there is need to be careful that we have a thorough intense feeling of the monstrous evils and the terrible calamities which war inevitably involves-ay, both to the victorious and the vanquished. We have fancied, in regard to the war in which we are at present engaged, that foolish, puffed-up notions have, equally with proper pride and sense of justice, prompted the cry of "War to the knife." There is a class of people who, incapable of judg

ing the merits of any question, or weighing the policy of any action, are sure to advocate the most vehement course and most momentous proceeding. The blockhead dislikes argument amazingly; it troubles him. The knocking down an antagonist is to him a clear, intelligible course, and (as the idiot is sure to be boastful and presumptuous) a safe and sure method of permanently settling a dispute. The wise and really courageous man will not avail himself of this last potent but dangerous argument so long as there shall remain a chance of his tongue, rather than his arm, convincing his adversary and bringing him to reason.

It is a very unfortunate feature in this war that we seem quite at issue amongst ourselves as to the precise object we want to gain, and as to the means by which we may secure even the vague principle upon which we mostly are agreed. When we read the discussions in the House of Commons, we positively sigh as we think of the effect which their perusal must have at St. Petersburg. Take, for instance, the debate of the 16th of July, when Lord John Russell rendered his "explanation" as to the strange discrepancy between his language before he unburdened himself in reply to Mr. Gibson, and after he had unburdened himself. Of course, we are not here about to enter upon an examination or criticism of the unhappy inconsistency to which Lord John has pleaded guilty. But one remark we would attach even to this brief paper upon another subject, that it does seem a really dreadful thing that Lord John could treat the subject of war or peace so lightly, that although in close consultation with other eminent and able men, he had formed a decided opinion that upon a certain basis peace might be secured, yet when he found this opinion rejected in other quarters, he felt no difficulty, saw nothing improper, in turning himself into a mere advocate, and, dropping his own views, urging vociferously the very opposite conclusions arrived at by other judgments. This is a course of proceeding which might be palliated in the case of a Beer Bill, or a Dog-cart Bill, but in the case of an awful war-in the case of a question of such fearful, overwhelming magnitude as that of the struggle now pending-can there be any denial to the assertion that there was a course pointed out to the statesman by his duty to his country, by his duty to God, which he ought not to have dared to disobey?—the duty of standing forward boldly, and, whatever might have been the consequences, declaring that such was his conviction, and he was compelled to avow it.

The multitude of brave men sleeping their last sleep before Sebastopol, although dead, yet speak: "We fought, and bled, and died. We made the sacrifice; we were told our country needed it, and we did not hesitate. Wives, children, mothers, sisters-ye tell the sacrifices we did make. But a sound comes to us that all the while it was even doubtful for what object we were fighting! Was it then all a sham-was it a hideous confusion-have we died for no real purpose? If so, we say to you to you, our rulers-it was indeed the Russian bullet which slew us, but you were our real murderers."



ONCE again I see before me, as it was in years gone past,
The brake beside the river where we met and parted last;

Then as now the heav'n was glowing with the pale stars' dreamy light,
And the flush of sunset hiding in the mantle of the night.

I hear the ceaseless ripple of the water flowing by,

And the rustle of the ash-boughs giving back a low reply;
I see the faint lights gleaming from the distant homes of men,
But I hear not, and I see not, as I heard and saw them then.

I start not forth expectant, as the branches flutter-now
The night-wind brings no balm to quell the throbbing of my brow;
Hope is dead, and memory sadly pauseth by our trysting-tree,
Grieving vainly over records of the love that's lost to me.

Thou mayst tread that path again, Lina, in evening's misty light,
From the grass thy passing footstep may brush the dews of night;
Thou mayst stand beneath the lime-tree, listening to the dropping rain,
But the step that sprang to greet thee once thou shalt not hear again.
The trees, the quiet starlight, and the blue stream gliding on,
Are so many dumb memorials of a faith that's past and gone.
Dumb! they have a thousand voices shrieking, moaning in mine ear-
"Get thee back, forgotten outcast, why thus weep and linger here ?"
What avails it now that fortune with rich gain hath crowned my toil?
A stranger and an alien stand I on my native soil;

On my hearth the weeds are growing, and my love hath turned away
From the visions fondly cherished in her truthful girlhood's day.
'Twas for this my gold was hoarded, for this I prayed for life,
When the dead were heaped around me in the battle's fiercest strife;
'Twas for this, to doubt and danger an unflinching front I kept;
This I dreamed of when, at midnight, I beside the watch-fire slept.
Oh! the headlong rush of passion!-oh! the madness of a trust,
That never paused or doubted till its hopes were in the dust!
Though the present knew but sorrow, all the future years were bright,
And an angel's face smiled on me from the dreams that blessed the night.
Why did want's rough grasp affright thee? Better death than loveless life;
Sweeter were the grave's calm slumber than the heart's rebellious strife.
Lina! Lina! yet a little hadst thou borne and braved thy fate,
And my hand had found and saved thee, but I came too late-too late!
All too late! I am no woman who hath tears at will to shed,
Yet I would the waves I baffled were now rolling o'er my head;
Would that I had perished struggling, with my red sword in my hand,
And my bones lay with my brothers', bleaching on the desert sand.
Time and toil and pain have changed me, but methinks life has no change,
To make thy voice and features to me things new and strange;
Yet thy heart sent back no echo when I spake-I know not what-
Well for both or all the present in that instant were forgot.

And I stood before thee calmly, with a stranger's careless smile,
Though my heart was tempest-shaken, and my sight grew dim the while..
Mine has been a life of trial, wild and troubled from the first;
Yet that brief and voiceless struggle was, of all, the last and worst.

Wert thou happy I could scorn thee; but to see thee as thou'rt now,
With the languor of a joyless life upon thy shadowed brow,

And thy dimmed gaze fixed and absent, as if every thought were cast
Where the wrecks of love lie buried in the ocean of the past-

Yet, I see the restless fever that lighted up thy cheek,

Yet, I feel the wasting sorrow which thy faded form doth speak.
They may call thee now another's, but I know, remembered tones
Come and haunt thine ear at midnight, when the owlet hoots and moans.
Thy thoughts are with me, Lina, with thy happy childhood's guide,
With thine earliest, truest lover lingering fondly by thy side;
The old haunts around thy homestead, where we were wont to be,
Ask day by day, and hour by hour, why wert thou false to me?
Would it were not so, my lost one! No selfish love is mine-
I could hold my own grief lightened, were peace and gladness thine;
But I know I am remembered-love like ours hath no decay-
What with life is twined and nurtured but with life can pass away.
When the silvery morning mists were rolling onward to the west,
Hand in hand we've watched the plover, screaming, lure us from her nest;
When the dew lay on the meadows, and the lark was singing clear,
Many a bright and balmy dawning in the summer of the year,

We have watched the flitting swallows o'er the glancing water pass,
And the light cloud-shadows rolling o'er the long and silky grass,
Seen the solitary heron standing on the mossy stone,

And the early fisher singing in his little boat alone.

Where the lilies crowd the narrow bay amid the sighing reeds,

Forth has dashed the startled wild-duck through the tangled water-weeds,
And we stood and watched her pinions, and her arched neck change and gleam,
As she led her half-fledged younglings to the broad and glassy stream.
And when twilight gathered slowly o'er the flushed and gorgeous sky;
When the land-rail craiked in the hollow, and the ghostly bat went by;
When the moon, like a lamp of pearl, rose high above the wood,
Silent in our joy's great fulness, on this spot we two have stood.
But I dream-I rave-I wander! I have now no right to dwell
On aught belonging to the time that I have loved so well;
I must go ere strength be weakness-ere sorrow change to sin:
Be the past a page unwritten-now the future must begin!
For as quickly as the swallow skimmed across the summer tide,
As swiftly as the shadow swept along the green hill-side,
As the golden clouds of morning vanished in the perfect day,
So from me have passed the promises of happiness away.

Time hath taught me bitter lessons, life hath borne me nauseous fruit :
I trained the spreading branches, but a worm was at the root;
I made myself an idol, but it crumbled from its shrine:
The star I looked on vanished, and I saw its light decline.

How canst thou-the pure, the truthful-make thy daily life a lie?
School thy lips to answer softly-teach thy breast to hush its sigh?
Oh how canst thou calmly suffer that another's lips press thine?
Canst thou call another "husband"-the name that should be mine?
I will put a world between us, I will find a foreign home,
Where no woman's voice shall reach me, no woman's step shall come!
Think me dead, or think me faithless to the vows that once I swore,
But until we meet in heaven thou shalt see my face no more!

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