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And she, whose tresses of raven-hair

That nuptial morn were braided,
Is pale with the frenzy of wild despair,

Like a drooping lily faded.
And those they loved in the field of fight,

Are cold in the pale moon's beaming, Where the raven rests from its weary flight,

In dolorous dirges screaming.


Seest thou yon bark? It left our bay
This morn on its adventurous way,

All glad and gaily bright;
And many a gale its impulse gave,
And many a gently-heaving wave

Nigh bore it out of sight.
But soon that glorious course was lost,

And treacherous was the deep;
Ne'er thought they there was peril most
When tempest seemed asleep.

Telle est la vie ! That flower, that fairest flower that grew, Aye cherished by the evening dew,

And cheered by opening day; That flower which I had spared to cull, Because it was so beautiful,

And shone so fresh and gay;
Had all unseen a deathly shoot,

The germ of future sorrow;
And there was canker at its root,
That nipped it ere the morrow.

Telle est la vie! I've watched from yonder mountain's height The waxing and the waning light,

The world far, far below;
I've heard the thunder long and loud,
I've seen the sunshine and the cloud,

The tempest and the bow;
Now, 'twas all sunshine glad and bright,

And now the storm was raging;
Methought I read in that frail light
And storm a warfare raging.

Telle est la vie!

1 « Such is life."


A CLERGYMAN of the Established Church, has written but little; that little,

however, displays great tenderness of feeling, and sweetness of expression.


She saw him-Death's untimely prey,

Struck with the blight of slow decline;
She watched his vigour waste away,

His ardent spirit droop and pine.
The rose upon his cheek, she knew,
Bloomed not with health's transparent hue:
It was a softer, fainter glow –

A tint of fading loveliness,
Which told, a canker lurked below:
So gleams o'er fields of wintry snow

The pale moon, cold and comfortless.
And oft she marked within his eye
A wild, unwonted brilliancy-
The lovely, but delusive ray
Of nature, sinking to decay;
And oft she caught his stifled moan-
It breathed a deep and hollow tone,
Which told of death, ere life was gone.
At times, when fever's burning flush
Heightened consumption's hectic blush,
Fond hope—the latest still to leave,
The first to flatter and deceive-
Once more would brighten-but to fly

When that false flush forsook his cheek,

And spoke the pang he would not speak,
And froze her fears to certainty.
Nor deem it strange, that hope had power
To soothe her soul in such an hour;
Where time has rent the lordly tower,

And moss entwines the arches gray,
Springs many a light and lovely flower
That lends a lustre to decay.

Thus, while existence wanes away,
Consumption's fevered cheek will bloom,

And beauty's brightest beams will play,
In mournful glory o’er the tomb.

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Whate'er his inward pangs might be,

He told not-mute, and meekly still,

He bowed him to Jehovah's will,
Nor murmured at the stern decree;
For gently falls the chastening rod
On him whose hope is in his God:
For her, too, who beside his bed

Sill watched with fond maternal care,

For her he breathed the pious prayer-
The tear of love and pity shed.
Oft would he bid her try to rest,

And turn his pallid face away,
Lest some unguarded look betray
The pangs nor sigh nor sound expressed.
When torture racked his breast, 'twas known
By sudden shivering starts alone;
Yet would her searching glance espy
The look of stifled agony-
For what can ’scape a mother's eye?
She deemed in health she loved him more
Than ever mother loved before;
But oh! when thus in cold decay,
So placid, so resigned he lay,
And she beheld him waste away,
And marked that gentle tenderness
Which watched and wept for her distress ;
Then did her transient firmness melt
To tears of love, more deeply felt;
And dearer still he grew-and dearer-
E'en as the day of death drew nearer.


OH! sleep not my babe, for the morn of to-morrow

Shall soothe me to slumber more tranquil than thine; The dark grave shall shield me from shame and from sorrow,

Though the deeds and the gloom of the guilty are mine. Not long shall the arm of affection enfold thee;

Not long shalt thou hang on thy mother's fond breast; And who with the eye of delight shall behold thee,

And watch thee, and guard thee, when I am at rest? And yet it doth grieve me to wake thee, my dearest,

The pangs of thy desolate mother to see; Thou wilt weep when the clank of my cold chain thou hearest,

And none but the guilty should mourn over me.

And yet I must wake thee—for while thou art weeping,

To calm thee, I stifle my tears for a while; But thou smilst in thy dreams, while thus placidly sleeping,

And oh! how it wounds me to gaze on thy smile! Alas! my sweet babe, with what pride had I pressed thee

To the bosom, that now throbs with terror and shame, If the pure tie of virtuous affection had blessed thee,

And hailed thee the heir of thy father's high name!
But now—with remorse that avails not-I mourn thee,

Forsaken and friendless as soon thou wilt be,
In a world if it cannot betray, that will scorn thee-

Avenging the guilt of thy mother on thee.
And when the dark thought of my fate shall awaken

The deep blush of shame on thy innocent cheek!
When by all but the God of the orphan forsaken,

A home and a father in vain thou shalt seek;
I know that the base world will seek to deceive thee,

With falsehood like that which thy mother beguiled;
Yet, lost and degraded—to whom can I leave thee?

O God of the fatherless! pity my child!



Dear as thou wert, and justly dear,

We will not weep for thee;
One thought shall check the starting tear

It is—that thou art free,
And thus shall Faith's consoling power

The tears of love restrain;
Oh! who that saw thy parting hour,

Could wish thee here again?
Triumphant in thy closing eye

The hope of glory shone,
Joy breathed in thine expiring sigh,

To think the fight was won.
Gently the passing spirit fled,

Sustained by grace divine:
Oh! may such grace on me be shed,

And make my end like thine!


Was born at a village in Ayrshire, A.D. 1799. The habits of reflection and study which he acquired in very early youth saved him from all dissipation and frivolity, but, unfortunately, strengthened his hereditary predisposition to consumptive disease. He was educated at the University of Glasgow; and in the year 1827, was admitted a licentiate to the Scottish Secession Church. In the same year he published his great work The Course of Time, but soon after its appearance, the fatal symptoms of rapid decline began to be developed, and he died September 15, 1827.

The Course of Time possesses passages that rank among the very best poetry of our language, but, as a whole, it is unequal; and some of the author's speculations on religious subjects are more rash and daring than the limited faculties of mortals should venture to indulge.



But there was one in folly further gone;
With eye awry, incurable, and wild,
The laughing-stock of devils and of men,
And by his guardian angel quite given up-
The Miser, who with dust inanimate
Held wedded intercourse. Ill-guided wretch!
Thou mightst have seen him at the midnight hour,
When good men slept, and in light winged dreams
Ascended up to God,-in wasteful hall,
With vigilance and fasting worn to skin
And bone, and wrapt in most debasing rags,-
Thou mightst have seen him bending o'er his heaps,
And holding strange communion with his gold;
And as his thievish fancy seemed to hear
The night-man's foot approach, startling alarmed,
And in his old, decrepit, withered hand,
That palsy shook, grasping the yellow earth
To make it sure.

Of all God made upright,
And in their nostrils breathed a living soul,
Most fallen, most prone, most earthy, most debased.
Of all that sold Eternity for Time,
None bargained on so easy terms with death.
Illustrious fool! Nay, most inhuman wretch!
He sat among his bags, and, with a look
Which Hell might be ashamed of, drove the poor
Away unalmsed; and ’midst abundance died
Sorest of evils!-died of utter want!

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