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"Man's life is like a Sparrow, mighty King!
While in the Body lodged, her warm abode;
His be a welcome cordially bestow'd!"
From Ecclesiastical Sketches.
COMPOSED UPON WESTMINSTer bridge, sePT. 3, 1803.
Earth has not any thing to show more fair:
Ships, towers, domes, theatres, and temples, lie
THIS poet was born at the little town of Irvine, în Ayrshire, North Britain, on the 4th of November, 1771. As his parents belonged to that strict and exemplary class of Christians called Moravians, the education of the poet was carefully conducted upon their religious principles, to which he adhered through life, and which he has so beautifully embodied in his poetry. He was also taught at one of their seminaries the Latin, Greek, French, and German languages. The excessive fastidiousness of his instructors made them subject the writings of even the most moral of our poets to severe curtailments before they entrusted them to the perusal of their pupils; and the natural consequence of this was, that Montgomery, who from his tenth year had shown a decided love of poetry, procured the works unmutilated, and read them by stealth. At last, when he had reached the age of fifteen, he was detected by his teachers in the felonious act of perpetrating an epic poem, entitled Alfred the Great, of which he had already written two books. The good brethren were alarmed at the discovery, as their pupil was destined for the work of the ministry, and they strictly charged him to renounce the temptations of rhyme; but in vain. They might as well have tried, like Canute, to check the flow of the tide by a simple man. date and they were therefore obliged to leave the poet to his own devices. At the age of seventeen he boldly threw himself upon the world, and came to London; but, as might be expected, no bookseller was hardy enough to publish the poems of an unknown boy. This disappointment cooled his love of literary adventures, and after a few years of hopeless struggle he became the publisher of a newspaper, called The Iris, in the town of Sheffield. Misfortune, however, still dogged his footsteps; for as he wrote at a period of political suspicion, certain articles in his journal were unjustly condemned as libellous, and in 1795 he found himself within the walls of a prison. Scarcely had the period of his sentence expired, when he was again committed upon a new, and equally fri. volous charge. Better times, however, succeeded, when Montgomery could state his sentiments without fear of their being misinterpreted; his upright character and amiable manners impressed society with love and esteem, while his poetical talents, evinced by successive publications, attained a high and merited popularity. A few years ago he received one of those government pensions bestowed upon those who have distinguished themselves by eminence and usefulness in authorship. He still resides at Sheffield, esteemed as one of the most moral and pure-minded of poets, and only in the second rank among those illustrious names that have shed a glory upon the nineteenth century.
DEATH OF ALBERT.
"On that melancholy plain,
In that conflict of despair,
How was noble Albert slain?
How didst thou, old warrior, fare?"
"In the agony of strife,
Where the heart of battle bled,
Where his country lost her life,
Glorious Albert bow'd his head.
"When our phalanx broke away,
-Where the dark rocks dimm'd the day,
"There like lions old in blood,
Lions rallying round their den, Albert and his warriors stood;
We were few, but we were men.
"Breast to breast we fought the ground, Arm to arm repell'd the foe;
Every motion was a wound,
And a death was every blow.
"Thus the clouds of sunset beam Warmer with expiring light; Thus autumnal meteors stream
Redder through the darkening night.
"Miracles our champions wroughtWho their dying deeds shall tell?
O how gloriously they fought!
How triumphantly they fell!
"One by one gave up the ghost,
Slain, not conquer'd-they died free.
Albert stood-himself a host:
Last of all the Swiss was he.
"So, when night with rising shade Climbs the Alps from steep to steep,
Till, in hoary gloom array'd,
All the giant mountains sleep;
High in heaven their monarch stands,
Shining unto distant lands
Like a new-created star.
"While I struggled through the fight,
"Slow awakening from that trance,
"Slain for me, his dearest breath
From the blow that menaced mine.
"He had raised his dying head,
As I woke the spirit fled,
But I felt his last embrace."
From The Wanderer of Switzerland.
DISCOVERY AND CONQUEST OF AMERICA.
Then first Columbus, with the mighty hand
Sprang a new world through his stupendous thought,
He heard the voice, he saw the face, of God.
The winds were prosperous, and the billows bore
He seem'd to live and breathe throughout the whole.
At the last look of resolute despair,
The Hesperian isles, from distance dimly blue,
Vain, visionary hope! rapacious Spain
A rabid race, fanatically bold,
And steel'd to cruelty by lust of gold,
Traversed the waves, the unknown world explored,
Let nobler bards in loftier numbers tell
-That gold, for which unpitied Indians fell,
For gold the Spaniard cast his soul away-