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Oh! never can my heart rely
“ Oh! why should fairy Fancy keep
These wonders for herself alone ?"
I knew not then that Fate had lent
Such tones to one of mortal birth;
I knew not then that Heaven had sent
A voice, a form like thine on earth!
And yet, in all that flowery maze
Through which my life has lov'd to tread,
When I have heard the sweetest lays
From lips of dearest lustre shed;
When I have felt the warbled word
From Beauty's mouth of perfume sighing,
Sweet as music's hallow'd bird
Upon a rose's bosom lying !
Though form and song at once combin'd
Their loveliest bloom and softest thrill,
My heart hath sigh’d, my heart hath pin’d
For something softer, lovelier still!
Oh! I have found it all, at last,
In thee, thou sweetest, living lyre,
Through which the soul hath ever pass'd
Its harmonizing breath of fire!
All that my best and wildest dream,
In Fancy's hour, could hear of see
Of Music's sigh or Beauty's beam
Are realiz’d, at once, in thee!
WRITTEN AT THE COHOS, OR FALLS OF 'Mid the moist azure of her eyes,
THE MOHAWK RIVER.
Gia era in loco ove s'udia 'l rimbombo
From rise of morn till set of sun,
And as I mark'd the woods of pine
Along his mirror darkly shine,
Like tall and gloomy forms that pass
Before the wizard's midnight glass;
And as I view'd the hurrying pace
With which he ran his turbid race,
Rushing, alike untir'd and wild,
Flying by every green recess
That woo'd him to its calm caress,
Yet, sometimes turning with the wind,
As if to leave one look behind!
1" There are gardens, supposed to be those of King Solo- lands in the neighbourhood of Niagara. See the drawing mon, in the neighbourhood of Bethlehem. The friars show of them in Mr. Weld's book. According to him, the pera fountain which they say is the sealed fountain,' to which pendicular height of the Cohos Falls is fifty feet; but the the holy spouse in the Canticles is compared ; and they pre- Marquis de Chastellux makes it seventy-six. tend a tradition, that Solomon shut up these springs and put The fine rainbow, which is continually forming and dishis signet upon the door, to keep them for his own drinking." solving as the spray rises into the light of the sun, is per- Maundrell's Travels. See also the Notes to Mr. Good's haps the most interesting beauty which these wonderful Translation of the Song of Solomon.
Oh! I have thought, and thinking, sigh'd-
Think'st thou, when Julia's lip and breast
Inspir'd my youthful tongue,
Nor felt the heaven I sung ?
Was still my Julia's kiss,
What she had giv'n in bliss !
And I will sing those eyes;
And I will praise thy sighs.
What makes the bard divineOh, Lady! how my lip would sing,
If once 'twere prest to thine!
SONG OF THE EVIL SPIRIT OF THE WOODS."
Qua via difficilis, quaque est via nulla....
Ovid. Metam. Lib. ii. v. 227.
CLORIS AND FANNY. Cloris! if I were Persia's king,
I'd make my graceful queen of thee: While FANNY, wild and artless thing,
Should but my humble handmaid be. There is but one objection in it
That, verily, I'm much afraid
Forsake the mistress for the maid!
One knows not where to take you;
Or what she meant to make you.
For man or maid's desiring:
The thing 's not worth inquiring !
Now the vapour, hot and damp,
And the shuddering murderer sits, i The idea of this poem occurred to me in passing through the very dreary wilderness between Batavia, a new settlement in the midst of the woods, and the little village of Buffalo upon Lake Erie. This is the most fatiguing part of the route, in travelling through the Genesee country to Niagara.
2 * The Five Confederated Nations (of Indians) were settled along the banks of the Susquehanna and the adja. cent country, until the year 1779, when General Sullivan, with an army of 4000 men, drove them from their country to Niagara, where, being obliged to live on salted provisions, to which they were unaccustomed, great numbers of them died. Two hundred of them, it is said, were buried in one grave, where they had encamped."- Morse's American Geography.
3 The alligator, who is supposed to lie in a torpid state all the winter, in the bank of some creek or pond, having pre
viously swallowed a large number of pine-knots, which are his only sustenance during the time.
4 This was the mode of punishment for murder (as Father Charlevoix tells us) among the Hurons. “They laid the dead body upon poles at the top of a cabin, and the murderer was obliged to remain several days together, and to receive all that dropped from the carcass, not only on himself but on his food."
ON HER ASKING ME TO ADDRESS A POEM TO HER.
Sine venere friget Apollo.
How can I sing of fragrant sighs
I ne'er have felt from thee? How can I sing of smiling eyes,
That ne'er have smil'd on me? The heart, 'tis true, may fancy much,
But, oh! 'tis cold and seemingOne moment's real, rapturous touch
Is worth an age of dreaming !
Did ever lip's ambrosial air
Such perfume o'er thy altars shed ?
One maid there was, who round her lyre
The mystic myrtle wildly wreath'd-
The myrtle wither'd as she breath'd'
Oh! you that love's celestial dream,
In all its purity, would know,
Too strongly through the vision glow !
Love sweetest lies, conceal'd in night,
The night where Heaven has bid him lie; Oh! shed not there unhallowed light,
Or Psyche knows, the boy will fly!!
Lone beneath a roof of blood,
Dear Psyche! many a charmed hour,
Through many a wild and magic waste,
Thy mazy foot my soul hath trac'd!
Where'er thy joys are number'd now,
Beneath whatever shades of rest,
Hath chain'd thee to thy Cupid's breast;
Whether above the horizon dim,
Along whose verge our spirits stray, (Half sunk within the shadowy brim,
Half brighten'd by the eternal ray.14
Thou risest to a cloudless pole!
Or, lingering here, dost love to mark
Through sunny good and evil dark ;
Still be the song to Psyche dear,
The song, whose dulcet tide was given
To keep her name as fadeless here,
As nectar keeps her soul in heaven!
1802. TELL me the witching tale again,
1 See the story in Apuleius. With respect to this beautiful For never has my heart or ear
allegory of Love and Psyche, there is an ingenious idea
suggested by the senator Buonarotti, in his “Osservazioni Hung on so sweet, so pure a strain,
sopru alcuni frammenti di vasi antichi." He thinks the So pure to feel, so sweet to hear!
fable is taken from some very occult mysteries, which had
long been celebrated in honour of Love; and he accounts, Say, Love! in all thy spring of fame,
upon this supposition, for the silence of the more ancient
authors upon the subject, as it was not till towards the deWhen the high heaven itself was thine; cline of pagan superstition, that writers could venture to When piety confess'd the flame,
reveal or discuss such ceremonies; accordingly, he observes,
we find Lucian and Plutarch treating, without reserve, of And even thy errors were divine!
the Dea Syria, and Isis and Osiris; and Apuleius, who has
given us the story of Cupid and Psyche, has also detailed Did ever Muse's hand, so fair
some of the mysteries of Isis. See the Giornale di Litterati
d'Italia, tom. xxvii. articol. 1. See also the Observations A glory round thy temple spread ?
upon the ancient Gems in the Museum Florentinum, vol.
I cannot avoid remarking here an error into which the 1“We find also collars of porcelain, tobacco, ears of French Encyclopédistes have been led by M. Spon, in their maize, skins, etc. by the side of difficult and dangerous ways, article Psyche. They say, “ Petron fait un récit de la on rocks, or by the side of the falls; and these are so many pompe nuptiale de ces deux amans (Amour et Psyché.) offerings made to the spirits which preside in these places.” Déjà, dit-il,” etc. etc. The Psyche of Petronius, however, See Charlevoix's Letter on the Traditions and the Religion is å servant-maid, and the marriage which he describes is of the Savages of Canada.
that of the young Pannychis. See Spon's Recherches Father Hennepin too mentions this ceremony; he also Curieuses, etc. Dissertat. 5. says, “ We took notice of one barbarian, who made a kind 2 Allusions to Mrs. T-ghe's poem. of sacrifice upon an oak at the Cascade of St. Antony of 3 Constancy. Padua, upon the river Mississippi.” See Hennepin's Voyage 4 By this image the Platonists expressed the middle state into North America.
of the soul between sensible and intellectual existence.
1. p. 156.
Mind, mind alone, without whose quickening ray, IMPROMPTU, UPON LEAVING SOME
The world 's a wilderness, and man but clay,
Mind, mind alone, in barren, still repose,
Nor blooms, nor rises, nor expands, nor flows ! O dulces comitum valete coetus-Catullus.
Take Christians, Mohawks, Democrats and all
From the rude wigwam to the congress-hall,
From man the savage, whether slav'd or free,
To man the civiliz'd, less tame than he!
'Tis one dull chaos, one unfertile strife
Where every ill the ancient world can brew
Is mix'd with every grossness of the new;
Where all corrupts though little can entice,
And nothing's known of luxury, but vice!
Is this the region then, is this the clime
For golden fancy? for those dreams sublime,
Which all their miracles of light reveal
To heads that meditate and hearts that feel?
And climbs the mountain ; every blooming spot
Burns with her step, yet man regards it not!
She whispers round, her words are in the air,
Without one breath of soul, divinely strong,
One ray of heart to thaw them into song!
Yet, yet forgive me, oh, you sacred few!
Whom late by Delaware's green banks I knew, Thou oft hast told me of the fairy hours
Whom, known and lov'd through many a social eve, Thy heart has number'd in those classic bowers, 'Twas bliss to live with, and 'twas pain to leave ! Where fancy sees the ghost of ancient wit
Less dearly welcome were the lines of yore 'Mid cowls and cardinals profanely flit,
The exile saw upon the sandy shore, And pagan spirits, by the pope unlaid,
When his lone heart but faintly hop'd to find Haunt every stream and sing through every shade! One print of man, one blessed stamp of mind! There still the bard, who, (if his numbers be Less dearly welcome than the liberal zeal, His tongue's light echo,) must have talk'd like thee, The strength to reason and the warmth to feel, The courtly bard, from whom thy mind has caught The manly polish and the illumin'd taste, Those playful, sunshine holidays of thought Which, ʼmid the melancholy, heartless waste In which the basking soul reclines and glows, My foot has wander'd, oh you sacred few! Warm without toil and brilliant in repose.
I found by Delaware's green banks with you. There still he roves, and laughing loves to see Long may you hate the Gallic dross that runs How modern monks with ancient rakes agree; O'er your fair country and corrupts its sons ; How mitres hang, where ivy wreaths might twine, Long love the arts, the glories which adorn And heathen Massic 's damn'd for stronger wine! Those fields of freedom, where your sires were born. There too are all those wandering souls of song,
Oh! if America can yet be great, With whom thy spirit hath commun'd so long, If, neither chain'd by choice, nor damn'd by fate Whose rarest gems are, every instant, hung By memory's magic on thy sparkling tongue.
sippi. “I believe this is the finest confluence in the world. But here, alas ! by Erie's stormy lake,
The two rivers are much of the same breadth, each about As far from thee, my lonely course I take,
half a league; but the Missouri is by far the most rapid, and No bright remembrance o'er the fancy plays,
seems to enter the Mississippi like a conqueror, through
which it carries its white waves to the opposite shore withNo classic dream, no star of other days
out mixing them: afterwards it gives its colour to the MisHas left that visionary glory here,
sissippi, which it never loses again, but carries quite down That relic of its light, so soft, so dear,
to the sea." - Letter xxvii.
1 In the society of Mr. Dennie and his friends, at PhilaWhich gilds and hallows even the rudest scene, delphia, I passed the few agreeable moments which my tour The humblest shed, where genius once has been! through the States afforded me. Mr. Dennie has succeeded
in diffusing through this elegant little circle that love for All that creation's varying mass assumes
good literature and sound politics, which he feels so zealOf grand or lovely, here aspires and blooms;
ously himself, and which is so very rarely the characteristic
of his countrymen. They will not, I trust, accuse me of Bold rise the mountains, rich the gardens glow, illiberality for the picture which I have given of the igno Bright lakes expand, and conquering' rivers flow;
rance and corruption that surround them. If I did not hate, as I ought, the rabble to which they are opposed, I could
not value, as I do, the spirit with which they defy it; and, ? This epithet was suggested by Charlevoix's striking de- in learning from them what Americans can be, I but see scription of the confluence of the Missouri with the Missis- I with the more indignation what Americans are
In lines of fire such heavenly lore, That man should read them and adore !
To the mob-mania which imbrues her now,
Yet have I known a gentle maid
Believe me, SPENCER, while I wing'd the hours Where Schuylkill undulates through banks of flow
ers, Though few the days, the happy evenings few, So warm with heart, so rich with mind they flew, That my full soul forgot its wish to roam, And rested there, as in a dream of home! And looks I met, like looks I lov'd before, And voices too, which, as they trembled o'er The chord of memory, found full many a tone Of kindness there in concord with their own! Oh! we had nights of that communion free, That flush of heart, which I have known with thee So oft, so warmly; nights of mirth and mind, Of whims that taught, and follies that refin'd; When shall we both renew them ? when restor'd To the pure feast and intellectual board, Shall I once more enjoy with thee and thine Those whims that teach, those follies that refine ? Even now, as wandering upon Erie's shore, I hear Niagara's distant cataract roar, I sigh for England-oh! these weary feet Have many a mile to journey, ere we meet!
Ω ΠΑΤΡΙΣ, ΩΣ ΣΟΥ ΚΑΡΤΑ ΝΥΝ ΜΝΕΙΑΝ ΕΧΩ.
While yet my soul is something free;
One moment's thought to stray from thee! Oh! thou art every instant dearer
Every chance that brings me nigh thee, Brings my ruin nearer, nearer:
I am lost, unless I fly thee!
Wish me not so soon to fall,
Oh! that eye would blast them all!
As ever yet allur'd or sway'd,
The ruin which thyself had made !
but once would smile on me, Good Heaven! how much, how far beyond
Fame, duty, hope, that smile would be! Oh! but to win it, night and day,
Inglorious at thy feet reclin'd, I'd sigh my dreams of fame away,
The world for thee forgot, resign'd! But no, no, no-farewell—we part,
Never to meet, no, never, never Oh, woman! what a mind and heart
Thy coldness has undone for ever!
TOOh! fair as Heaven and chaste as light ! Did Nature mould thee all so bright, That thou shouldst ever learn to weep O'er languid Virtue's fatal sleep, O'er shame extinguish’d, honour fled, Peace lost, heart wither'd, feeling dead? No, no—a star was born with thee, Which sheds eternal purity! Thou hast, within those sainted eyes, So fair a transcript of the skies,