Full text of "Poetry"
LIBRARY OF CONGRESS
BY MRS. ABDY.
THE GREATER PART OF THESE VERSES HAVE APPEARED AT VARIOUS
TIMES, IN DIFFERENT MAGAZINES AND ANNUALS.
(FOR PRIVATE CIRCULATION.)
PRINTED BY J. ROBINS AND SONS, SOUTHWARK.
Broken Ties t 1
The* Birth of an Heir 3
The Second Marriage 5
Brother and Sister « 7
The Songs of Scotland 8
The Home of Happier Days , 10
The Infant's Evening Prayer 11
The World of Change 13
The Orphan's Dream 15
The Magic Lantern 17
The Birth-day Gift 18
The Last of the Family 19
The Soldier's Bride 2i
My very Particular Friend 24
The Minstrel's Truest Fame 27
The Children's Ball 29
The Kaleidescope 31
The Separation 32
Oh ! ask me not to sing to-night 34
The Portrait 35
A Mother's Love 36
Lover's Presents 40
An Original Thought 41
Neglected Talent , , 43
The Treasures of the Earth 45
Caroline, a Sketch 47
The Wall-Flower 49
The Songs we used to sing together 50
The Philosophical Lover, a true anecdote - 51
Congenial Spirits » , „ . . 52
The Night-blowing Cereus 54
The Widower's Dream 55
The Pilgrim's Home ...» 57
Meeting Again , 59
The Children in the Temple 61
Lines written in a Young Lady's Album, under a Lock of her
deceased Mother's Hair 63
Earth and Heaven 64
The Land of the Blest 65
The Bondage of Israel 70
The Sisters of Bethany 73
Hymn sung at St. John's Church, Southwark, on occasion of
a Century having elapsed since its Consecration 75
Hymn sung at the School for Indigent Blind, on occasion of
Laying the First Stone of the proposed New Building, by
the Archbishop of Canterbury, April 25th, 1834 77
The Broken Ties of happier days,
How often do they seem
To come before our mental gaze,
Like a remembered dream ;
Around us each dissevered chain,
In sparkling ruin lies,
And earthly hand can ne'er again
Unite those Broken Ties.
The parents of our infant home,
The kindred that we loved,
Far from our arms perchance may roam,
To distant scenes removed,
Or we have watched their parting breath,
And closed their weary eyes,
And sighed to think how sadly death
Can sever human ties.
The friends, the loved ones of our youth,
They too are gone or changed,
Or worse than all, their love and truth
Are darkened and estranged ;
They meet us in the glittering throng
With cold averted eyes,
And wonder that we weep our wrong,
And mourn our Broken Ties.
Oh ! who in such a world as this,
Could bear their lot of pain,
Did not one radiant hope of bliss
Unclouded yet remain ?
That hope the Sovereign Lord has given,
Who reigns beyond the skies;
That hope unites our souls to Heaven,
By Faith's enduring ties.
Each care, each ill of mortal birth,
Is sent in pitying love,
To lift the lingering heart from earth,
And speed its flight above ;
And every pang that rends the breast,
And every joy that dies,
Tell us to seek a safer rest,
And trust to holier ties.
THE BIRTH OF AN HEIR.
Hark ! pealing bells salute the morn ;
They speak of joy — an heir is born !
Kinsman and friend now smile elate,
Glad tenants throng the castle gate.
While the proud father, in his joy,
Reads the sweet aspect of his boy,
And strives in every look to trace
The features of his noble race.
Babe of a high and honored line,
A bright and blessed lot is thine ;
Not for thy lands and forests wide,
Not for thy gilded halls of pride ; —
These may be phantoms to betray
Thy wandering feet from wisdom's way ;
No — on a simpler scene I rest,
And viewing it, I deem thee blest.
THE BIRTH OF AN HEIR.
Within yon still and tranquil room,
Shaded to soft and twilight gloom,
Thy youthful mother, fair and good,
Breathes forth her holy gratitude ;
And while the thoughtless sons of earth
Thy coming greet with festal mirth,
She, in low tones of heartfelt prayer,
Commends thee to thy Maker's care.
Her looks, her words, with gentle power,
Shall guide thy steps in childhood's hour ;
And when a flattering servile train,
Extol to thee thy fair domain,
And to thy titles bend the knee —
Her's shall that best ambition be,
To fit thee for a sphere more bright —
The heirship of a realm of light !
THE SECOND MARRIAGE.
Oh ! think not I can calmly see
Thy second nuptial morn,
Thou know'st with what delighted glee
I hailed its former dawn ;
How proud, how joyous did I feel
Thy loved one to attend,
And with a bridesmaid's eager zeal
Adorn my gentle friend.
I clasped the string of costly pearls,
Thy gift in courtship's hours ;
I placed upon her shining curls
The crown of orange flowers ;
O'er her sweet face I flung the veil,
Yet drew it half aside,
That thy triumphant gaze might hail
The beauty of thy bride !
THE SECOND MARRIAGE.
And when I knew her in the sphere
Of calm domestic life ;
How did I honor and revere
The virtues of the wife ;
She turned from flattery's syren voice 7
And pleasure's splendid dome,
To bless the husband of her choice ,
And grace his tranquil home.
Time passed— I saw her in the gloom
Of sickness and of death ;
I marked her faint and fading bloom ,
I watched her failing breath ;
I heard her last fond feeble prayer
That heaven would thee sustain,
Support thy steps, and soothe thy care.
Through a lone world of pain.
Nay, w T eep not thus ! new duties bind
Thy thoughts to this low span ;
Thou ever while she lived wert kind —
Thine is the faith of man !
Mine is more firm — my woman's heart
Loves on, though hope be fled —
This day can nought but grief impart
To one who mourns the dead !
BROTHER AND SISTER.
Her cheek was like the blossoms of the spring ;
Her eye was blue as the calm heavens above her ;
Her lips, like parted rose-buds, severing,
Seemed to command the gazing world to love her ;
Yet, woman like, her strength was in her weakness,
Ruling all hearts by her resistless meekness.
Beside her stood a form of manly grace ;
Mind in his aspect held its high revealing ;
In his, her winning features, I could trace
The magic smile, the glance of tender feeling ;
And when T heard his silvery voice — none other
Could speak in tones so like her — save her brother.
Such forms must Shakspeare in his dreams have seen,
When he imagined his transcendent pair,
Sebastian, counterpart in look and mien
Of the sweet Viola, his sister fair ;
Would he were here, to see his fancied story
Exemplified in living truth and glory !
THE SONGS OF SCOTLAND.
Oh ! give me yet another lay,
One song of Scotland ere we part ;
Thou dost not know the magic sway
Such accents hold upon my heart.
They lead me back to girlhood's hour,
When music's spell my soul possest ;
And when of all its treasured lore,
I loved the Songs of Scotland best. -
I sung them in the dazzling throng,
And oft, when pressed to change the strain ;
Coldly I breathed the chosen song,
Then turned to Scotland's lays again.
I murmured them alone — and then,
With fancied scenes my sight was glad ;
I wandered through some northern glen,
In silken snood, and robe of plaid.
SONGS OF SCOTLAND.
I watched the waterfall's white spray ;
Wove garlands of the yellow broom ;
Heard the sweet mavis pour its lay,
And saw the opening gowans bloom.
Those days have past — I now repress
The w r aking dreams indulged before ;
The charm of fancy sways me less ;
The power of custom rules me more.
And varied songs attract my praise,
The German strains of wild romance ;
Soft Italy's subduing lays,
And the light airs of merry France.
Yet, when the simple melodies
Of bonny Scotland greet my ear ;
Forth at the potent call arise
Feelings and thoughts long prized and dear.
My sunny girlhood smiles again,
And 'midst a world of strife and art ;
The Songs of Scotland still retain,
Their early empire o'er my heart !
THE HOME OF HAPPIER DAYS.
Yes, bright the velvet lawn appears,
And fair the blooming bowers ;
Yet blame me not — I view with tears,
This scene of light and flowers ;
Strangers possess my native halls,
And tread my wonted ways ;
Alas ! no look, no voice recalls,
The Home of Happier Days.
The gay guitar is still in tune ;
The greenhouse plants are rare ;
Glad faces throng the wide saloon,
But none I love are there :
Oh ! give me friendship's cherished tone,
Give me affection's gaze ;
Else my sad heart can never own
The Home of Happier Days.
THE INFANT'S EVENING PRAYER.
The day is over, my frolic child !
Thou hast left thy sports of glee ;
With looks composed, and with accents mild,
Thou hast sunk on thy bended knee ;—
And the moonbeams play on thy hazel eye,
And shine on thy flaxen hair ;
While thy voice is raised to the power on high.
In a simple Evening Prayer.
Few are thy words, my gentle boy,
Thou art but of infant years ;
Thou can'st not tell of the world's vain jov,
Its temptations, toils, and tears ;
But thou still can'st ask from the Lord above 7
His protecting grace and care ;
And each earthly friend who has won thy love,
Is named in thy Evening Prayer.
12 THE INFANT'S EVENING PRAYER.
Ere thy lips could a lengthened sentence frame,
Or utter a perfect tone ;
We taught thee to lisp thy Maker's name.
And bow at his heavenly throne ;
We bade thee gaze on the bright blue skies,
And told thee His home was there ;
And He will not the simple words despise
Of our Infant's Evening Prayer !
THE WORLD OF CHANGE,
Oh ! trust not, cling not, to the hope
Of constancy below ;
Earth's fragile blossoms smile and droop,
Her waters ebb and flow :
Yon flow'ret withers as it springs,
Yon bird is on the range ;
Aye, even in life's meanest things,
This is a World of Change.
The friends of thy secluded youth,
Who cheer thy tranquil hours ;
Will they retain their boasted truth,
Far from these peaceful bowers ?
No ! glittering scenes their faith shall try,
Their tenderness estrange ;
And thou in bitterness shalt sigh,
O'er a false World of Change.
14 THE WORLD OF CHANGE.
Thou too wilt change in after years,
Thy spirit's noble ken,
Will share the sordid hopes and fears
Of calculating men ;
And nature's charms will fail to please,
And music's notes seem strange ;
And poesy's sweet spell will cease,
To bless a World of Change.
Yet though stern time some joys may blight,
Some finer feelings chill ;
Oh ! may'st thou hold one hope of light,
Unchanged, unclouded still—
The hope to win in realms above,
Of bright and boundless range,
A world of constancy and love,
A world that cannot change !
THE ORPHAN'S DREAM,
" I dreamed that in a garden fair,
I wandered free with spirits light ;
And my dear parents met me there,
And kissed and clasped me with delight :
" A thousand tender things we spoke,
Nor seemed of parting e'er to deem ;
And when I suddenly awoke,
I wept to find it but a dream ! "
" And was it but a dream, sweet child,
From which thy waking thoughts should turn ?
No ! from the scenes that round thee smiled,
A heavenly lesson thou may'st learn.
" Thy parents lived in Christian trust,
They sought a purer world than this ;
And now they do not sleep in dust,
But wake in realms of cloudless bliss.
16 THE ORPHAN'S PRAYER.
" And shouldst thou in their footsteps tread,
And pray like them for pardoning grace ;
By heaven's kind aid thou may'st be led,
To reach their happy dwelling place.
" Then, as thy cheering dream foretold,
Thy parents shall with rapturous love,
Welcome their lost-one to its fold,
Their wanderer to a rest above."
THE MAGIC LANTERN.
What wonders before us incessantly pass,
Revealed by the power of this marvellous glass ;
There are shadows to please, to surprise, to delight,
And some that the senseless and weak might affright.
But you eachby your parents and friends have been told,
That it is but a mimic display you behold ;
And as soon as a taper the darkness shall cheer,
These forms of deception shall all disappear.
And thus, when you enter the world, you will view
A crowd of bright phantoms apparently true ;
Gay fashion will tempt you, and flattery smile,
And pleasure will beckon, and fancy beguile.
Then think on the magical glass of your youth,
Try these beautiful shades by the touchstone of truth ;
And the moment she shines with her calm sober ray,
The cheating illusions will vanish away !
THE BIRTH-DAY GIFT.
Well pleased, I saw thee, noble boy,
Thy birth-day gift expend, —
Thou didst not purchase sweets to cloy,
Nor toys to break and rend ;
But yon poor lad, thy pitying care
Supplied with clothes and food ;
And now he breathes for thee the prayer
Of heartfelt gratitude.
Oh ! may'st thou think upon this day
In manhood's trying hours ;
When wealth is thine, and on thy way
Temptation strews its flowers !
Then, while thy steps avoid each snare
That would to harm delude ;
Still may thy bounty win the prayer
Of heartfelt gratitude.
THE LAST OF THE FAMILY.
I bid thee welcome to my father's halls,
But fled for ever is their wonted mirth ;
Death hath been busy in these ancient walls,
Casting dark shadows o'er our house and hearth :
The brave — the beauteous from their home have past,
And I remain of that loved band the last.
Thou wilt not now my gallant brothers greet,
Riding amidst the glades with hound and horn ;
Nor my fair sisters, warbling ditties sweet,
While gathering wild-flowers in the dewy morn ;
Evening will come, but will not bring again,
The social circle, nor the festal train.
I can but lead thee to my lonely room,
Where in fond dreams I pass my blighted youth ;
Musing on vanished loveliness and bloom,
Man's dauntless courage, woman's changeless truth ;
And scenes of joyous glee, or tranquil rest,
Shared with the early lost — the bright — the blest,
20 THE LAST OF THE FAMILY.
Yet mine is not a wild and impious grief ;
Meekly I pray for Heaven's supporting grace,
And soon I feel His hand will give relief;
And the last sad survivor of her race,
Quit this lone mansion for the home above,
Where dwell her happy family of love.
THE SOLDIER'S BRIDE.
Yes, ye may pay your thoughtless duty,
Vain throng, to glory's distant star ;
And ye may smile when blooming beauty
Rewards the gallant son of war ;
For me, I sigh to think that sorrow
May soon that gentle heart betide ;
And soon a dark, a gloomy morrow,
May dawn upon the Soldier's Bride,
Oh ! were her path the scene of brightness,
Pourtrayed by ardent fancy's ray ;
Oh ! could her bosom thrill in lightness,
When glory's pictured charms decay ;
Could hope still bless her golden slumbers,
And crown the dreams of youthful pride,
Then might ye smile, ye reckless numbers,
Then greet with joy the Soldier's Bride.
22 THE SOLDIER'S BRI0E.
But when appalled by threatening dangers.
And doomed in distant scenes to roam,
To meet the chilling glance of strangers,
And vainly mourn her peaceful home ;
Oft shall her tearful eye discover
The fears her bosom once defied ;
Oft shall the smiles that blest the lover,
Desert the Soldier's weeping Bride.
And when, perchance, war's stunning rattle
Greets from afar her shuddering ear ;
When yielding to the storm of battle,
Her hero meets an early bier :
Condemned in solitude to languish,
She yields to sorrow's gushing tide ;
And tears express in silent anguish
The sadness of the Soldier's Bride.
What then avails the wreath of glory ?
The victor it should crown is fled ;
The din of fame, the martial story,
Reach not the mansions of the dead ;
She greets with sighs the dear-bought treasure,
That seems her trials to deride ;
And shuns the mimic gleam of pleasure,
That mocks the Soldier's widowed Bride.
the soldier's bride. 23
To me lier flowery crown of gladness,
Seems like the drooping cypress wreath ;
Her nuptial throng — a train of sadness,
Her minstrel band — the dirge of death :
Oh ! in her days of deep dejection,
May Heaven her trembling footsteps guide ;
And soothe with pity and protection,
The sorrows of the Soldier's Bride.
MY VERY PARTICULAR FRIEND.
Are you struck with her figure and face ?
How lucky you happened to meet
With none of the gossipping race,
Who dwell in this horrible street !
They of slanderous hints never tire ;
/ love to approve and commend,
And the lady you so much admire,
Is my very particular friend !
How charming she looks — her dark curls
Really float with a natural air ;
And the beads might be taken for pearls,
That are twined in that beautiful hair :
Then what tints her fair features o'erspread-
That she uses white paint some pretend ;
But, believe me, she only wears red -
She's my very particular friend !
MY VERY PARTICULAR FRIEND. 25
Then her voice, how divine it appears
While carolling " Rise gentle moon ; "
Lord Crotchet last night stopped his ears,
And declared that she sung out of tune ;
For my part, I think that her lay
Might to Malibran's sweetness pretend ;
But people wont mind what I say —
I'm her very particular friend !
Then her writings — her exquisite rhyme
To posterity surely must reach ;
(I wonder she finds so much time
With four little sisters to teach !)
A critic in Blackwood, indeed,
Abused the last poem she penned ;
The article made my heart bleed —
She's my very particular friend !
Her brother dispatched with a sword,
His friend in a duel, last June ;
And her cousin eloped from her lord,
With a handsome and whiskered dragoon :
Her father with duns is beset,
Yet continues to dash and to spend —
She's too good for so worthless a set-
She's my very particular friend !
26 MY VERY PARTICULAR FRIEND.
All her chance of a portion is lost,
And I fear she'll be single for life ;
Wise people will count up the cost
Of a gay and extravagant wife :
But tis odious to marry for pelf,
(Though the times are not likely to mend,)
She's a fortune besides in herself —
She's my very particular friend !
That she's somewhat sarcastic and pert,
It were useless and vain to deny ;
She's a little too much of a flirt,
And a slattern when no one is by :
From her servants she constantly parts,
Before they have reached the year's end ;
But her heart is the kindest of hearts —
She's my very particular friend !
Oh ! never have pencil or pen,
A creature more exquisite traced ;
That her style does not take with the men,
Proves a sad want of judgment and taste ;
And if to the sketch I give now,
Some flattering touches I lend ;
Do for partial affection allow —
She's my very particular friend !
THE MINSTREL'S TRUEST FAME,
Minstrel , though gay and smiling throngs
Court thee with ardent zeal,
And lavish praises on the songs
Beyond their power to feel ;
Oh I build not on those specious arts 7
The honors of thy name ;
In simpler scenes, in warmer hearts ,
Seek for thy truest fame,
Where'er a social band are met
Around the quiet hearth,
Who, wrapt in thy sweet strains* forget
The gilded toys of earth ;
Where'er the student's midnight hours,
Sacred to learning's claim,
Are brightened by thy magic powers.
There rest thy real fame.
28 the minstrel's truest fame.
Thine is the soul refined and high,
And thine the gifted lyre ;
Can worldly minds to such reply
With pure congenial fire ?
Oh ! sigh not their applause to own,
Nor heed their fickle blame ;
But seek in kindred hearts alone
For true and lasting fame !
THE CHILDREN'S BALL,
Brilliant and gay was the lighted hall,
'Twas the night of an infant festival ;
There were sylph-like forms in the mazy dance,
And there were the tutored step and glance,
And the gay attire, and the hopes and fears
That might well bespeak maturer years ;
The sight might to common eyes seem glad,
But I own that it made my spirit sad.
I saw not in all that festive scene,
The cloudless brow, and the careless mien ;
But vanity sought the stranger's gaze,
And envy shrunk from another's praise,
And pride repelled with disdainful eye,
The once-loved playmate of days gone by ;
Alas ! that feelings so far from mild,
Should enter the breast of a little child.
30 THE CHILDREN'S BALL.
And how, thought I, on the morrow's rise,
Will these fair young sleepers ope their eyes ;
Will their smiles the freshness of morning speak,
And the roses of health suffuse their cheek ?
No, with a wearied mind and look,
They shall turn from the pencil, the globe, and book,
A longing and feverish glance to cast,
On the joys and pains of the evening past.
Parents ! 'tis all too soon to press
The glittering fetters of worldliness,
On those tender years, to which belong
The merry sport, and the bird-like song ;
What fruit can the trees of autumn bring,
If the fragile blossoms be nipt in spring ?
Such stores shall meridian life impart,
If ye spoil the bloom of the infant heart !
The fragments of ribbon, of silk, and of lace,
Of industry's toil the display,
You seemed at my entrance to deem a disgrace,
And hastily hurried away.
But place in the wondrous Kaleidescope's glass,
The shreds you appear to despise ;
And beautiful shapes will successively pass,
In various tints to your eyes.
From the change which this simple contrivance has made ,
A lesson of use we may learn ;
Whenever to scenes or to objects conveyed,
Which taste and refinement would spurn.
Though little our favor they seem to invite,
We must not repine or lament ;
For they all may look lovely and fair in our sight,
If viewed through the glass of content !
Parting for ever ! is thy home
So sad, so cheerless grown,
That thou art each prepared to roam
Through this false world alone ?
Recall the words, though love be fled,
Though hope's bright visions cease ;
Still, still together thou may'st tread
The tranquil path of peace.
Think on the season dear and fleet,
Of young and fond romance ;
When thou in ecstacy would'st meet
Each other's smile and glance :
Think on the joyous bridal day,
And on its sacred vow ;
Then, fair and flowery seemed thy way-
Why is it clouded now.
THE SEPARATION. 33
Oh ! by the real ills of life
How little art thou tried ;
Thy mutual taunts, thy daily strife,
Spring from one feeling — Pride !
Bear and forbear, no longer blame
Thy partner's faults alone ;
Conscience may urge a ready claim
To tell thee of thy own .
But part — the chosen one forsake,
To whom thy troth was given ?
Reflect, nor dare a tie to break,
Approved by earth and heaven :
Man cannot, must not rend the band
Of holy marriage love ;
Tis ruled bv an unerring; hand,
The hand of Him above !
OH ! ASK ME NOT TO SING TO-NIGHT,
Oh ! ask me not to sing* to night,
Dejection chills my feeble powers ;
I own thy halls of glittering* light
Are festive as in former hours ;
But when I last amid' them moved,
I sung for friends beloved and dear,
Their smiles inspired, their lips approved,
Now all is changed — they are not here.
I gaze around — I view a throng,
The radiant slaves of pride and art ;
Oh ! can they prize my simple song,
The soft low breathings of the heart ?
Take back the lute — its tuneful string
Is moistened by a sorrowing tear ;
To night, I may not, cannot sing,
The friends that love me are not here !
Yes, it is lovely — those eyes are bright
With the vivid blaze of nature's light ;
Surely those lips will sever ere long
For the winning speech, or the warbling song .
Artist, I give thee unmingled praise,
Yet I do not grieve to withdraw my gaze ;
For I boast a source of more genial bliss,
And I know a portrait more just than this,
inflection's true and unerring art
Has fixed that form in my faithful heart,
There, like a pearl in the ocean cells.
Sacred from glance and from touch it dwells ;
With tedious skill thou hast wrought a shade
Which chance may injure, and time must fade ;
But mine, which was traced without endeavor,
Shall live in its guarded shrine for ever !
A MOTHER'S LOVE.
Oh ! do you ask me why I weep,
Who used to seem so glad ?
There are but few a watch to keep,
If I am pleased or sad :
My father in life's busy toils
Throughout the day must rove ;
And much I miss a mother's smiles,
And mourn a Mother's Love.
My garden is o'errun with weeds,
It gives me little joy,
For no fond mother stands and heeds
The pastimes of her boy ;
And when my lessons I repeat,
Though many may approve,
I sigh the warm caress to meet,
That spoke a Mother's Love !
a mother's love. 37
When lately, fever's grasp I felt,
My wants were all supplied ;
But she, that dear one, would have knelt
My sleepless couch beside,
And whispered comfort for each ill,
And prayed to Him above,
That he would deign to spare me still.
To bless a Mother's Love.
And yet, my father's second choice
In nothing can offend,
And I would willingly rejoice
To know her as a friend ;
But when she pleads a dearer claim,
The mockery I prove ;
And, shrinking from a mother's name,
Sigh for a Mother's Love !
Yes, doubts and griefs may cloud my cheerless day,
But peace attends the visions of the night,
For then, in fair and magical array,
The loved and lost, the beautiful and bright,
Come round my pillow in a sparkling train,
Charming my thoughts to long-past hours again.
I see their sweet familiar forms, I hear
Voices that spoke erewhile of love and truth ;
And household scenes to early feeling dear,
Return, arrayed in all the glow of youth,
Ere anxious cares and grovelling thoughts of earth
Had chilled the festive board, the joyous hearth.
And when I wake, and o'er my troubled heart
Comes the dim consciousness of pleasures fled ;
Sadly I turn from life's deceptive art,
To mourn the tried fond friendships of the dead ;
Yet sweet and soothing the reflection seems,
That I can view them in the land of dreams.
And not, I trust, in vain, these forms of love,
Their radiant visits on my sleep bestow ;
They seem bright heralds from a world above,
They bid me tread their holy steps below,
And seek and pray to join them on that shore
Where severed friends shall meet — to part no more.
Rich gifts wax poor when givers prove unkind.
Take back thy gifts, thou noble dame,
Gifts that might courtly homage claim ;
This ring is circled with diamonds bright,
This locket flashes with ruby light,
This chain reveals in each mazy fold,
Pale emeralds gleaming through links of gold ;
Lady, such gifts were unsought by me,
And I loved them but as bestowed by thee.
Pledges so splendid I could not impart,
My poor return was a faithful heart ;
But now that our gifts we each resign,
Lady, how sad an exchange is mine;
Thy glittering gems are still gay and bright,
And may charm a high-born lover's sight ;
But the humblest maid will spurn a token,
Like the heart thv treachery has broken.
AN ORIGINAL THOUGHT.
Does the press wait for copy ? I shrink from the task ;
One boon from the Genius of fancy I ask ;
I want not a subject, I want not a rhyme,
Nor metaphors florid, nor figures sublime ;
Additional leisure I sigh not to claim,
And I feel I have more than due justice from fame ;
I covet what cannot be borrowed or bought,
The gift of a striking Original Thought.
Could Memory desert me, I yet might succeed ;
Oh ! why was I suffered the poets to read ?
Would that Campbell and Moore could at once be
Would my mind were not haunted by Wordsworth and
When some brilliant idea I have carefully nurst,
I discover that " Shakspeare had thought of it first,"
And my path with such glittering phantoms is fraught*
That they reallv exclude one Original Thought !
4 V 2 AN ORIGINAL THOUGHT.
The claims of the Annuals I must not neglect,
And two Magazines contributions expect,
Before me the leaves of an Album unclose,
(How I dread its bright pages of azure and rose,)
I must write an Address for a Charity soon,
And set some new words to an old German tune ;
And how in the world are these works to be wrought,
When I cannot command one Original Thought !
Well, I bow not beneath a peculiar disgrace,
'Tis the fate of our present poetical race,
To live in the sun-shine of summers long o'er,
" Pensioned off," on the wit and the wisdom of yore ;
But since Fancy her slights may yet please to repair,
In her lottery still I will venture a share;
And perhaps at this moment, the wheel may be fraught
With that capital prize — an Original Thought.
Thy lot has fallen, my gifted friend,
Amid' those who ill requite thee ;
To their grovelling sphere thou canst not bend,
And their sordid spirits slight thee.
Thine is the sun-shine of mental day,
And the beams of soul surround thee ;
But they cast no warmth, and they shed no ray,
On the dull cold hearts around thee.
They are slaves to Mammon's servile toil,
And his dark base spell is o'er them ;
And they grasp at a low and drossy spoil.
With thy minds vast wealth before them.
Like a lovely tree upon desert land.
Thou can'st win no passing duty ;
But thv blossoms fall on the barren sand,
In a mournful waste of beauty,
44 NEGLECTED TALENT.
I cast a laurel wreath on thy shrine,
I give it in grief and weeping,
To think that no step, no eye but mine,
At that shrine a watch are keeping.
And that talents splendid, rare, and bright,
As e'er graced poetic story,
Should be doomed to die by the fitful light
Of their own neglected glory !
THE TREASURES OF THE EARTH.
What are the vaunted treasures of the earth,
The pomp of dazzling gems, of gold, and lands,
Fair palaces that echo festal mirth,
Pageants of pride, and kneeling vassal bands ?
The eye may roam these brilliant phantoms o'er,
But the heart asks for more.
What better gifts has earth ? — The crown of bays,
By warrior and by minstrel fondly woo 'd ;
Friendship's kind smile, the social circle's praise,
Love's tender vow, the tear of gratitude ?
Oh ! dearer these than all that wealth can pour,
Yet the heart asks for more.
It asks a land where dreams of bliss deceive not,
Where hearts and feelings are not bought and sold,
Where envy's shafts of dear- won fame bereave not,
Where love is never false, nor friendship cold,
And* where the spirit to pure joys may soar,
Nor feel a wish for more.
There is that land — there let the Christian render
The homage of his heart, his lips, his eyes.
And turn from this false world's deceitful splendor,
Its hollow gladnesses, and faithless ties,
To seek those heavenly treasures, whose bright store
Endures for evermore.
Soft pity in her eye of blue,
Enchants the raptured gazer's view ;
The very soul of gentle feeling
Through its long silken fringe revealing :
Loose flow the locks of nut-brown hair,
That shade her brow and bosom fair,
And with officious duty,
Conceal from fond admiring eye.
The tender tear of sympathy,
Or varying glance of beauty.
Her cheek in tranquil hours is pale,
But modesty's suffusing glows,
Can at the voice of praise prevail,
And with the lily blend the rose :
Her brow is marked with pensive grace ?
And we can read in that fair face,
Some woes have fallen to her share,
And pierced her with their dart ;
And that the gloomy sway of care
Has touched her heart.
Yet, when with sweetness free from guile,
Her lip is dimpled by a smile,
Tis like the stealing summer gale, *
That fans the wild-rose of the vale,
And softly dries the pearly gem,
That glitters on its fragile stem ;
She views applause with meek disdain,
Nor heeds her listening votive train ;
To Wisdom gives her only care,
And scarcely knows that she is fair !
I love thee, lone and pensive flower,
Because thou dost not flaunt thy bloom
In pleasure's gay and garish bower,
Or luxury's proud banquet-room ;
But on the silent mouldering wall,
Thy clinging leaves a fragrance shed,
Or give to the deserted hall
A relic of its glories fled.
Yon roses, beautiful and bright,
Methinks the flattering crowd pourtray,
Who bask in fortune's golden light,
And wanton in her joyous way ;
But thou art like the faithful love,
That blooms when friends and fame have past,
Towers the dark wreck of hope above,
And smiles through ruin to the last !
THE SONGS WE USED TO SING TOGETHER.
The songs we used to sing together,
Speak to my heart of happier "hours ;
We sung them in the spring's bright weather,
Beneath a canopy of flowers ;
Now, while the wint'ry evening closes,
I sit and hear the falling rain,
And think on withered joys and roses,
And songs I may not sing again !
AVhen spring once more the land rejoices,
Blossoms and buds shall gaily blend ;
But never can our hearts or voices
Again unite — my faithless friend !
Affection's master-chord is broken,
Then let us not her lays profane,
The soul's deep language they have spoken,
Such words they cannot speak again !
THE PHILOSOPHICAL LOVER.
A TRUE ANECDOTE.
An heiress one morning eloped with a youth,
Leaving kindred and friends in the lurch ;
They arrived at the spot for exchanging their truth,
Just as "twelve" was proclaimed from the church ;
" Our clock has gained time/' quoth the sexton,
For a ladder, its course to repel ;"
But the lover replied — "Take no trouble my friend,
To-morrow will do just as well ! "
At the neat village inn a retreat they procured ;
The lover arose the next morn,
And found that his fair one a chaise had secured,
And departed at break of the dawn ;
" Did she leave not a word ? " was his eager demand,
" Yes," the chambermaid hastened to tell,
" This message, she said, sir, you'd quite understand,
To-morrow will do just as well ! ! "
Oh ! in the varied scenes of life,
Is there a joy so sweet,
As when amid' its busy strife
Congenial spirits meet ?
Feelings and thoughts, a fairy band
Long hid from mortal sight,
Then start to meet the master-hand,
That calls them forth to light.
When turning o'er some gifted page,
How fondly do we pause,
That dear companion to engage
In answering applause ;
And when we list to music's sighs,
How sweet at every tone,
To read within another's eyes
The rapture of our own !
CONGENIAL SPIRITS. 53
To share together waking dreams,
Apart from sordid men ;
Or speak on high and holy themes,
Beyond the worldling's ken :
These are most dear — but soon shall pass
That summer of the heart,
Congenial spirits, soon, alas !
Are ever doomed to part.
Yet thou to whom such grief is given,
Mourn not thy lot of woe ;
Say, can a wandering light from heaven
Ere sparkle long below ?
Earth would be all too bright, too blest,
With such pure ties of love ;
Let kindred spirits hope no rest,
Save in a rest above.
THE * IGHT-BLOWING CEREUS.
Fair flower, whose coy and diffident revealings
Bloom to the gaze of pensive night alone ;
Thou seem'st a record of my wayward feelings, —
For when life's glittering sunbeams round me shone,
Closed was my heart, nor gave one bud of love
To glorify its bounteous Lord above.
But sorrow came, and summer friends departed ;
Then at the throne of grace I learned to kneel ;
And now, redeemed from sloth, and fervent-hearted,
The holy glow of gratitude I feel :
And those sweet leaves in darkness have unfurled,
That shunned the gaudy splendor of the world.
THE WIDOWER'S DREAM,
I saw thee in the dreams of night ,
Loved spirit, near me stand ;
Encircled with the glorious light.
Of a celestial land :
But yet thy aspect, once so dear,
Repelled me by its glance severe,
Of stern and high command ;
I veiled my face — I could not brook
On that indignant brow to look.
Oh ! then, with deep remorse I thought
On all my wrongs to thee ;
How oft my wandering feet had sought
The haunts of frolic glee ;
And how amid' the giddy train,
My smiles had hailed their mirthful strain,
False to thy memory ;
Thy vows, which blessed my early lot,
Thy love, thy life, thy loss forgot.
56 the widower's dream.
I raised my eyes— thy frown had fled,
The same soft touching grace, "
That once on earth its radiance shed,
Again illumed thy face :
Thy hazel eyes, so meek before,
Looked still more gentle than of yore,
And shone with purer rays ;
They spoke the sweetness of the dove.
They told of pardon, pity, love.
I woke in tears : the moon's pale light
Poured round its holy beam : —
Oh ! could that vision of the night
Be but a fleeting dream ?
No, no ! it surely came to call
My erring steps from folly's thrall,
And teach my heart to deem
That life's best joys must worthless be,
If banishing one thought of thee.
THE PILGRIM'S HOME.
There are climates of sun-shine, of beauty, and gladness,
Where roses are flourishing all the year long ;
Their bowers are despoiled not by wintery sadness,
And their echoes reply to the nightingale's song :
But coldly the Briton regards their temptations,
Compelled from his friends and his kindred to roam ;
He looks on the brightness of lovelier nations,
But his heart and his wishes still turn to his Home.
Oh ! why is this duteous and home-loving feeling
So seldom displayed by the pilgrim of life ?
While faith to his mind a bright scene is revealing,
He toils through a world of sin, sorrow, and strife :
Yet lured by the paltry attractions around him,
Too oft he forgets the pure pleasures to come ;
And wildly forgoes for the toys that surround him,
His hopes of a lasting, a glorious Home.
OS THE PILGRIM'S HOME.
Not such is the Christian — devoted, believing,
Through storm and through sun-shine his trust shall
The way that he wends may be dark or deceiving,
But Heaven is his shrine, and the Lord is his guide :
And when Death's warning angel around him shall
He dreads not the mandate that bids him to come ;
It tells that his toils and temptations are over —
Tis the voice of his Father ; it calls to his Home.
Yes, we may meet again, my banished friend,
Not in the beautiful autumnal bowers,
Where we have seen the waving corn-fields bend,
And twined bright garlands of the harvest flowers,
And watched the gleaners with their golden store —
There we shall meet no more.
Not in the well remembered hall of mirth,
Where at the winter eve each heart rejoices,
And kinsmen gather round the blazing hearth,
And the glad breathings of young happy voices
Strains of sweet melody in concert pour —
There we shall meet no more.
Not in the haunts of busy strife, which bind
Thy soaring spirit to dull worldly toil ;
Where the revealings of thy vivid mind
Exhaust their treasures on a barren soil,
With few to praise, to wonder, or deplore —
There we shall meet no more
60 MEETING AGAIN.
Yet mourn not thus — in fields of sunny splendor,
Unchilled by storms, and rich in fadeless bloom ;
In scenes where Friendship reigns supreme and tender,
Secure from change, disquietude, and gloom,
And parting words ne'er give the spirit pain —
There may we meet again.
THE CHILDREN IN THE TEMPLE.
St. Matthew, c. 2L v. 15 and 10.
Beneath Judea's hallowed fane,
When infant lips Hosannas poured,
Our gracious Saviour heard the strain,
Approved the spirit that adored ;
And deemed that lips like theirs could raise
The purest song of perfect praise.
The blessed lot was then their own,
His voice to hear, his form to view ;
But now, the power of faith alone
His holy presence can renew,
And picture to their mental sight,
His image in reflected light.
Then, oh ! how direful is the thought,
That darkness may those minds conceal,
That youth may bloom and fade, untaught
His name to breathe, his power to feel ;
Or offer at his gracious throne,
The hymn of praise he loves to own.
62 THE CHILDREN IN THE TEMPLE.
But Charity's benignant care,
Those steps can guide, those clouds dispel ;
Again, beneath the house of prayer,
Can bid their loud Hosannas swell ;
And earthly gratitude shall raise
Its mingled notes with heavenly praise.
WRITTEN IN A YOUNG LADY'S ALBUM, UNDER A LOCK
OF HER DECEASED MOTHER'S HAIR.
She who once blessed this tranquil home has fled,
And her surviving friends with pensive care
Behold this sole memorial of the dead,
The last sad relic of a lock of hair.
Yet on no outward tribute need we gaze,
To bring before our minds her useful life ;
All must her unobtrusive virtues praise,
Who knew her as a Mother and a Wife.
She sought and loved the hallowed courts of prayer,
Nor did she breathe her worship there alone ;
But oft from social converse would repair,
To kneel devoutly at her Maker's throne.
Oh ! may the objects of her prayers on earth,
Partake the blessings of her pious love ;
Tread in her footsteps, emulate her worth,
And share hereafter in her rest above.
EARTH AND HEAVEN.
Oh ! ye whose spirits faint,
When all around looks drear,
The Lord ye serve regards your plaint,
Brief are your trials here :
Life's passing joys or woes,
Are but of fragile worth ;
There is a brighter world for those
Whose trust is not on Earth.
There, freed from care and pain,
Shall ye in glory stand ;
There shall ye meet lost friends again,
A blest and holy band :
Think on your Saviour's love,
Think on your sins forgiven ;
Oh ! rise Life's fleeting ills above,
And fix your hopes on Heaven.
THE LAND OF THE BLEST.
" Dear Father, I ask for my Mother in vain,
Has she sought some far country her health to regain ;
Has she left our cold climate of frost and of snow,
For some warm sunny land where the soft breezes
— " Yes, yes, gentle boy, thy loved Mother has gone
To a climate where sorrow and pain are unknown ;
Her spirit is strengthened, her frame is at rest,
There is health, there is peace, in the Land of the Blest. "
" Is that land, my dear Father, more lovely than ours,
Are the rivers more clear, and more blooming the
Does summer shine over it all the year long,
Is it cheered by the glad sounds of music and song ? "
— " Yes, the flowers are despoiled not by winter or
The well-springs of life are exhaustless and bright ;
And by exquisite voices sweet hymns are addrest
To the Lord who reigns over the Land of the Blest."
66 THE LAND OF THE BLEST.
" Yet that land to my Mother will lonely appear,
She shrunk from the glance of a stranger while here ;
From her foreign companions I know she will flee,
And sigh, dearest Father, for you and for me."
— *' My darling, thy Mother rejoices to gaze
On the long-severed friends of her earliest days ;
Her parents have there found a mansion of rest,
And they welcome their child to the Land of the Blest."
" How I long to partake of such meetings of bliss,
That land must be surely more happy than this ;
On you, my kind Father, the journey depends,
Let us go to my Mother, her kindred, and friends."
— " Not on me, love, I trust I may reach that bright clime.
But in patience I stay till the Lord's chosen time ;
And must strive while awaiting His gracious behest,
To guide thy young steps to the Land of the Blest."
" Thou must toil through a world full of dangers, my boy?
Thy peace it may blight, and thy virtue destroy ;
Nor wilt thou, alas ! be withheld from its snares
By a Mother's kind counsels, a Mother's fond prayers :
Yet fear not— the God whose direction we crave,
Is mighty to strengthen, to shield, and to save ;
And His hand may yet lead thee, a glorified guest,
To the Home of thy Mother, the Land of the Blest."
" God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye
are able, but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye
may be able to bear it."
1st Corinthians, c. 10. v. 13.
Oh ! words of great and gracious power !
Blest safeguard in Temptation's hour !
When all my feeble props depart,
This promise cheers my drooping heart.
My steps may err, my courage fail,
And worldly lures my strength assail ;
Yet still it tells me that the snare
Shall not be more than I can bear.
Oft, when I feel disturbing doubt,
Caused by a treacherous world without ;
Oft when I mourn corroding sin,
Deep in a guilty heart within ;
Though hard the conflict to sustain,
Let me not tremble or complain ;
For that blest thought relieves my care, —
It is not more than I can bear.
When Pleasure's gay and glittering way
Invites my heedless feet to stray ;
When Passion's stormy waves molest
My aching heart, and troubled breast ;
When hourly round my path arise
Temptations in each varied guise ;
What were my anguish, my despair,
To find them more than I could bear.
Yet more they would be, blessed Lord,
But for thy strength, thy arm, thy word ;
Yes, 'tis thy hand supports my form
Amid 7 the sunshine or the storm :
Thy voice when sin and strife control,
Still whispers comfort to my soul :
Kneeling before thy throne in prayer,
I learn to trust, submit, and bear.
Away, then, vain and coward tears !
Away, distrustful, impious fears !
Let me not rashly dare to say,
That I am doomed the Tempter's prey ;
Although awhile I own his art,
Though frail, though weak my rebel heart ;
The Lord that feeble heart will spare,
Nor try it more than it can bear.
Then deign, Almighty Guardian, still
Thy word of promise to fulfil ;
I would not crave release from strife,
Nor absence from the snares of life ;
But grant that in Temptation's day,
I still may meekly, humbly say,
u Thanks to my Heavenly Father's care,
I feel not more than I can bear ! "
THE BONDAGE OF ISRAEL.
6th Chapter of Judges.
Oh ! Israel, dark was the doom of thy nation,
When the spoilers of Midian prevailed o'er thy pride;
When thy children were scattered in wide desolation,
And forced in the dens of the mountains to hide.
They cried to the Lord to retract his just sentence ;
He heard them, and soon at his bidding arose
A Prophet, to melt their hard hearts to repentance,
A Champion, to humble the might of their foes.
No outward destroyers our land are oppressing,
But alas ! we have foes who assault from within ;
How many, perchance, whom I now am addressing,
Have struggled for years in the bondage of Sin.
Ye are driven by Sin from your homes of calm quiet,
Ye fly to the world, poor impoverished slaves ;
Yet degraded ye sigh in its scenes of wild riot,
As desolate Israel mourned in her caves.
THE BONDAGE OF ISRAEL. 71
Thus sunk in the thraldom of shame and dejection,
To whom can ye turn, to the Lord will ye plead ?
Will he send you a Prophet to give you direction,
Will he send you a Gideon to help in your need ?
Ye need not a Prophet to tell of your errors,
The fearless firm preachers of God's holy word,
Have dwelt to you oft on his love and his terrors,
But the message was slighted, the warning unheard.
Nor need ye a Gideon to strike off your fetters,
Your foe has been vanquished, your cause has been
To Sin ye were slaves, to the Lord ye were debtors,
Till your freedom was bought by the blood of his Son.
And though Sin will still strive to become your oppressor,
Though ye struggle awhile in the Tempter's dark
Ye may triumph through faith in your blest intercessor,
And return to the Lord by repentance and prayer.
Then fear not, for God your redemption has spoken
In his gospel of pardon, of love, and of peace ;
Nor need ye like Israel crave for a token,
The fire from the rock, or the dew on the fleece.
72 THE BONDAGE OF ISRAEL.
The Cross of your Saviour is ever before you,
The Cross where he suffered in sorrow and pain ;
Its light may illume your dark ways, and restore you,
To dwell with your God and his people again.
And oh ! may those Prophets be blest in their mission,
Who faithfully lead you that refuge to win ;
At the foot of the Cross may ye kneel in submission,
And your souls shall be freed from the Bondage of Sin.
THE SISTERS OF BETHANY.
St. Luke, c. X. v. 38* to the end.
Sisters, whose favored home was blest
By owning Jesus for a guest,
How do ye each the fruits reveal
Of earthly and of heavenly zeal :
She who the lavish feast prepares,
Droops with the weight of busy cares ;
While holy joys with her abound,
Who at her Master's feet is found.
Ye Christians of the present days,
Who shun the world's enticing ways,
And gladly welcome at your board
A guest with sacred wisdom stored ;
Do ye his pious counsels hear
With undivided mind and ear ?
Or do your thoughts oft idly roam
To the proud plenty of your home ?
74 THE SISTERS OF BETHANY.
Know that such trifles boast no worth
To please the " excellent of earth ; "
The banquet rare, the lighted hall,
May Fashion's giddy slaves enthrall ;
But splendid show, and gay excess,
Suit not those sons of holiness,
Whose chastened minds have ceased to prize
The world's weak pomps and vanities.
Ye may not now your Saviour meet,
But when his chosen saints ye greet,
Oh ! strive devoutly to improve
Such interviews of Christian love :
Keep in your path no gilded snare ;
Cast from your thoughts each earthly care,
And listening with ear and heart,
Rejoice to choose the better part.
sung at st. John's church, southwark,
on occasion of a century having elapsed since
Years swiftly pass ! this house of prayer,
Devoted, gracious Lord, to thee ;
Has stood, defended by thy care,
Unharmed for one long century.
From time to time a varied race
Have here been taught thy ways to know ;
Who now (most solemn thought) retrace
That privilege in joy or woe.
Oh ! Lord ! to all now present here,
Thy holy influence impart ;
Grant that the words which strike the ear,
Mav touch and sanctify the heart.
While earthly temples yet remain,
Still may this Church thy truth reveal ;
And teach a young and rising train
Their Saviour's name to bless and feel.
And when this house no longer stands,
May all who loved its courts to fill,
Meet in a " house not made with hands,"
And worship thee and serve thee still.
SUNG AT THE SCHOOL FOR INDIGENT BLIND,
On occasion of Laying the First Stone of the proposed New Building,
by the Archbishop of Canterbury, April 25th, 1834.
Lord, we thy wondrous grace adore ;
Thou hast our generous friends inclined,
To grant like holy Job of yore,
Succour and guidance to the blind.
Here, varied arts our darkness soothe,
And here, before our mental sight,
Are brought in all the blaze of truth,
The glories of the Gospel light.
Soft Charity's benignant hand,
Has now enlarged this ample dome,
That others soon may join our band,
And share the shelter of our home.
We may not our kind guardians view ;
But while this thought some grief imparts,
Let Gratitude with pencil true,
Trace each loved image on our hearts.
And should we to those mansions rise,
Where cloudless sight to all is given ;
May we unfold our longing eyes
To greet our earthly friends in' Heaven.
ROBINS AND SONS, PRINTERS, SOUTHWARK.