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Or lily fair or water-cress,

A fane as hy some artist reared, That'stooped its cheek for a caress, With polished shaft, and architrave, Now o'er ihal genile stream was cast And glittering porch, and crystal nave, The snow ridge by the mountain blast, And gleaming as the light shone on, Till all the valley level seemed

It seemed a palace of the sun. Save here and there the ice-bridge gleamed. Where spread the lake all sheeted wide But farther down that valley glen, Sheer to the ragged cliff's steep side, The brouk burst up to light again ; Whose hoary summits glitter'd there, For there, pitch'd from its dizzy edge, Like giants in the frosty air, The wave shot down a rocky ledge, [brake, The light laugh came upon the wind, And foamed and thundered through the And all that spake'the vacant mind.' Until its waters joined the lake.

There, like a young and mettled horse, And there, no Faëry in her ceil

The skilful skaiter plies his force. Had dreamed or fancied half so well, Anon he shoots, and wheels, and turns, Or half so beautiful a thing,

As if the element he spurns, Or given it teint and coloring,

As if, a glorious thing of air, As that wild brook had fancied there, His own proud will sustained him there: And fashion'd in the frosty air.

And now again he circles neat, That brook had Aung on either side, And wheels and wheels again more fleet, Its fairy frost-work far and wide,

Till far across the lake he swings, Till upward ʼmid the rocks appeared, While loud and shrill his iron rings."

One extract more, and we have done. The public have received this book as the work of a young man.

We
suppose

it is such ; and yet we may err here. There is a maturity of thought in some of these

poems, not common with young men. Take, for example, the following from • Thoughts in Solitude :

' But there's a half-way virtue in the world
Which is the world's worst enemy - its bane,
Its withering curse. It cheats it with a show-
But offers naught of substance, when is sought
Its peaceful fruits. It suffers men in power
To let the young aspirant rise or fall,
As chance directs. The rich man fosters it,
And for the favor, it shuts up his ears
Against the cry of virtuous penury;
Or bids him dole out with a miserly hand,
A farthing, where a thousand should be thrown,
And protier'd kindly. The lone orphan's cries,
The widow's wail in impotence, perchance
Secure a few unmeaning tears, but not
The pity which administers relief.
Words How, as freely as a parrot talks,
Al tales of suffering; and tears may fall
As Niobe's ; but not a sacrifice
The heart accepts, nor pleasure is forgone,
Which marks the principle of virtue there,
Or such as finds acceptance in the skies.
Who pays with pity, all my debt of love,
Who weeps for me, yet never sees my lack,
Who says be clothed, yet never proffers aught,
He's not my fellow, nor deserves the name.

"A feeble virtue is a vice, adorn'd
In virtue's semblance. T is a negative
And useless quality. It exempts from wo
Insufferable, yet grudges perfect bliss;.
And he but tricks him in a knave's attire,
Who boaste no other. He's but half the man,
Who, when temptation stares him in the face,
Assents, yet trembles to be overcome !
Such men do things by halves, and never do
Aught with an earnest soul. They fool away
A life, in which the good and evil mix
So equal, that the sum is neutralized ;
And Justice on their sepulchres inscribes
No sterner truth, than when she writes - a blank.

Why linger then betwixt the two extremes
The passive puppet of each circumstance?
Why pure and dev’lish — mortal and immortal -
Too good for earth, and yet unfit for Heaven?
Why not at once dispel these baneful mists,
Thrust from our paths the arts and blandishments
Which win to wickedness - and rise at once
With a proud, moral freedom, until we
Can stand upon the stars, and see to Heaven ?

The reader will agree with us when we say, that if this is the work of a boy, he is a promising child.

We cannot extract farther; although 'Other Days,' • Life,' the *Lines to a Little Boy,' Morning,' Fanny Willoughby,' and Lines in Dejection,' are well worthy to be transplanted. But we leave the rest to the reader.

To sum up our notions of Mr. Bacon, we are deceived if his talents do not secure for him a prominent place among our future poets; and we cannot forbear thinking, that the specimens we have given, take from this remark every appearance of extravagance. We do not think there has been a first work presented by any of our young poets, of fairer promise than this ; and though we do not assert that this volume raises the writer at once to the front rank, yet we do assert, and will maintain, that there are poems in it worthy to place him in a station of honor, among bis contemporaries. His language has strength and simplicity; his style clearness and force. His thoughts are elevated; his habits are those of serious contemplation; and for these we award him praise. In a day when we have so many vicious models, it seems to us a proof that a man must have something superior in himself, who steers clear of them. Of bis susceptibility to beauty, and of the correctness of his taste, we have not heard a dissenting voice; and, moreover, Mr. Bacon is a Christian.

Before we close, we have a word to say, lest our notice lose its authority. We do not think the volume without faults. There are inequalities in it. The metre is sometimes faulty; the author does not, in some instances, refine and polish enough; and his own judgment will no doubt suggest these things in a future collection, should he make one. But faults were to be expected in a first work; and nothing surely can be more unbecoming a judicious critic, than to seize on an initial effort, and attempt, by exaggerating its faults, to throw contempt upon the whole. This we think has been done, in some instances, with Mr. Bacon; and this is the reason we have stepped forward to do him justice, and cordially offer him the hand of encouragement.

O. P. Q.

PRETEXTS AND MOTIVES.

Dost think those gilt and hollow cones
That front an organ, cause the tones ?
Ah, no! those pealing notes proceed
From tubes of baser metal hid.
This same remark, we might advance,
Holds good in life's mysterious dance :
In front the pompous pretext find,
But the mean motive skulks behind.

S O N N E T.

WRITTEN UPON SEEING THE PORTRAIT OF A LADY, PAINTED BY C. G. THOMPSON,

THERE is a sweetness in those up-turned eyes,
A tearsul lustre - such as fancy lends
To the Madonna - and a soft surprise,
As if they saw strange beauty in the air ;
Perchance a bird, whose little pinion bends
To the same breeze that lifts that flowing hair.
And, o, that lip, and cheek, and forehead fair,
Reposing on the canvass ! -- that bright smile,
Casting a mellow radiance over all!
Say, didst thou strive, young artist, to beguile
The gazer of his reason, and to thrall
His every sense in meshes of delight?
When thou, unconscious, made this phantom bright?

Sure nothing real lives, which thus can charm the sight!
New-York, December, 1837.

P. B.

NAVAL SKETCHES.

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BY THE AUTHOR OF 'SHIP AND SHORE,' *CONSTANTINOPLE AND ATHENS,' ETC.

hat both The winter had passed — the time of the singing of birds had come, and the voice of the turtle was heard in the land — when we, as if obeying these awakening instincts of nature, weighed our anchors from the safe bed in which they had long been planted, and in company with the flag-ship which had first caught the moving infection, floated quietly from the barbor of Mahon, with recollections that endeared the past, and anticipations that brightened the future. The last voice I heard was that of a bird singing from a tree that shades an extreme cliff, and where it would seem as if the little warbler had come to give us his parting cheer. I admired that bird for several reasons ; for its plumage —- it was gay as hope; for its voice it was full of sweetest melody; for its courage it was one of the few that bad escaped the shot and snares of our wicked pastimes; for its spirit of forgiveness we had been all winter picking the bones of its fellows, and perhaps had deprived it of its vernal mate; yet it came forth to breathe its farewell, with the forgiving, clinging affection of the female heart for the one no longer worthy of her love and confidence. If the doctrine of the Samian sage be true, I would ask that at death my spirit may pass into the form of such a beautiful bird as this : not that I would, in that event, sing to those who had plotted my death ; but I would fly to the convent of Santa Clara, and perching close to the grated window of the imprisoned Maria, relieve with my notes the solitude of her cell; and so sweet and impassioned should be the strain I would sing, that the wondering nun should every night murmur in her very dreams :

“A lovely bird with azure wings,
And song that says a thousand things,
And seems to say them all for me!'

And if the Lady Abbess came, as she undoubtedly would, to drive me away, I would sing a note in her ear, more fearful than that of the death-watch in the chamber of the dying. For, aside from the mischievous energy with which she exercises her abbatical functions, she has a face and figure that can fear no change that may betide humanity, and which would justify the expenses and pains of a journey to the Temple of Helen, at Therapne. I shall never forgive her for thrusting her ugly hand between my lips and the fingers of the beautiful Maria, just as I was taking my last leave. She might at least have accorded me this last and delicate indulgence of affection, after having accepted of me, with evident emotions of delight, a dozen of the best Virginia hams that ever yet crossed the Atlantic. But I have ever observed, that a woman excessively ugly, is usually excessively perverse. It would seem as if she intended to retaliate the wrongs of nature indiscriminately upon her unoffending species. No one of my

female readers, I am sure, will take an exception to this remark, or construe it into a personality; for, whatever facts might justify, her good opinion will prevent her ranking herself with the class to which it refers. As for the abbess of the convent of Santa Clara, I may yet perhaps have an opportunity of returning her ungrateful effrontery; for if we drop anchor at Madeira, on our return home, it may not be my fault if she has not one the less nun on whom to rivet the chain of her sanctimonious tyranny.

But to resume the thread of our nautical tale. The morning of our first day out was peculiarly brilliant and serene, promising us a quiet and pleasant passage. But toward evening, the wind chopped about directly in our teeth, and suddenly assumed the dark and formidable force of a gale ; obliging us to take in sail, and heaving against us a heavy head sea. It was not less diverting than melancholy, to witness the effect produced by the rolling and plunging of our ship. We had come out sleek as if born and cradled in a bandbox. Not a bit of lint disfigured the coat or pantaloon; not a soil dimmed the reflecting surface of the boot ; and the smooth corners of the shirt-collar, peering above the carefully-adjusted stock, shot forward like the ears of a rabbit listening to some rumpling sound ahead; when a saucy wave broke over our bows, sweeping the whole length of the ship, and all this starch and gloss went down, just as I have seen the feathers of an old family rooster, hieing from a drenching shower to his covert. Nor was the scene below less afflictive; for every thing that had not been previously secured, was pow promiscuously moving about; some to maim you, but more, like ambition 'o'er leaping itself,' to knock out its own existence. My air-port, by some mistake, had been left open. The sea had now made a tunnel of it, and my state-room door being shut, my wardrobe and library, and — horribile dictu ! my manuscripts, were drifting about in a most disastrous and drowning condition. My only anxiety was to save the latter, feeling how much would be irreparably lost to the world, in their destruction! I thought of the Alexandrian Library, and knowing water to be as fatal as fire, seized at once these invaluable treasures; but was not a little mortified and vexed in finding them the most light and buoyant things in my apartment. Even a gauze handkerchief sank at their side. No serious,

9

VOL. XI.

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disaster, however, happened to the ship; though a watch-boy, posted aloft, fell sound asleep, even while the masts were sweeping through nearly half of a frightful circle. O Sleep!

Wilt thou upon the high and giddy mast
Seal up the ship-boy's eyes, and rock his brains
In cradle of the rude, imperious surge,
And in the visitation of the winds,
Who take the ruffian billows by the top,
Curling their monstrous heads, and hanging them,
With deafning clamors, in the slippery clouds,
That with the hurly, death itself awakes,
Cans't thou, O partial Sleep! give thy repose
To the wet sea-boy, in an hour so rude,
And in the calmeet and most stillest night,

Deny it to a king! The wind subsided the next morning, and on the evening of the day succeeding, we anchored in Toulon. We were preparing to go on shore, when an officer, with a most grim, uncompromising visage such an one as would befit a man whose business it is to announce the fatal sentence to prisoners under hope - approached our ship, and inquired where we were from; and on being told, informed us that we must perform a quarantine of ten days! This was enough to upset the patience of a Job. We had merely come over from Mahon, a place perfectly healthy, and known to be so, and had on board at this time scarcely a case of even ordinary indisposition; certainly nothing more alarming or contagious than a tooth-ache, or broken finger; and yet we were plunged into a quarantine, as if we had come from some Golgotha, freighted with reeking skulls ! But there is as little use in scolding now, as there was in quarrelling then. Men who have the least reason for their conduct, are the last to be influenced by argument. We tested this truth still more thoroughly on a subsequent occasion. Our ship had come to Marseilles, and we had freely communicated with the place; after spending about a week in mingled concourse with its inhabitants, a party of us went over to Toulon, where it was well known who we were, and from whence we came; (for not a mouse stirs in France, without being narrowly watched; and it is said, that the appearance of a strange baboon on her Spanish frontier was once telegraphed to the police of Paris, and a detachment of the gend'armes sent out to watch the motions of the ambiguous stranger.) In the mean time, our ship came round to this port, and was put in quarantine! We appeared before the magistrates of the health office, and told them that we were officers attached to the Constellation, and had left her at Marseilles, freely communicating with the shore, and that we had ourselves come over uninterruptedly by land, bringing contagion in our own skirts, if there was any; but the only reply was a shrug of the shoulder, a Frenchman's last and only resort, when confounded in argument; and our ship had to perform her week's quarantine, merely because the sanitary regulations of Marseilles had not exacted the penalty. We might laugh at such a farce as this, were it not so excessively annoying. But an audience may be so circumstanced, that the most ludicrous, blundering inconsistency and burlesque astuteness may fail to provoke a smile.

I have done with quarantines ; nor will I trouble the reader with

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