« ПредишнаНапред »
The first Sit years of human life
Like the year's opening month arc found;
Conimenc'd in being's natal strife,
With little obvious produce crown'd;
For when six years their course have run,
Existence scarcely is begun.
'Twas thus, we find, in Mirzah's dream,
Was veil'd from sight at each extreme
And only what the Genius told
Could its beginning—end, unfold.
The next six years of life lead on
And February, ere 'tis gone,
No fruit we find, no lasting flowers,
But mind begins to feel its powers.
i As outward nature now prepares
For finite man the face of earth, And length'ning dny to sight declares
The laughing Spring's approaching birth: So does the glance of boyhood's eye Betoken youth is drawing nigh.
M*Krn follows next; the voice of song
Though stormy winds may sweep along,
Though clouds, at times, perchance may lower,
We look beyond the present hour!
And thus does youth, with eye elate,
Nor stormy winds, nor clouds abate
Life is to him a waking vision, -,
And earth a paradise Elysian.
Now Awl lavishly unfolds
The violet's bloom, the chesnnt's flowers; And, amid weeping clouds, beholds.
With smiling eye, her verdant bowers; And, ere she bids those bowers farewell. Wooes Love to bless them with his spell.
Now too the youth to manhood grown,
Thinks time mis-spent, if spent alone,
As ardent and romantic love
A source of pain or bliss may prove.
Then May comes on! delightful May!
Dispensing, ere she bid adieu, More genial airs, and skies more gay,
Than wnken'd April's changeful hue: The dnys have nearly rcach'd their length And beauty its more lusty strength.
Man too, at Thirty, may be found,
In his best prime, with vigour crown'd,
Although he may not now enjoy
Much that gave pleasure to the boy.
In June some earlier fruits have caught
And other joys to sense are brought
Beauty with usefulness combines,
And from such union brighter shine*.
And thus, when man is Thirty-six,
Should with life's lingering blossoms mix,
Nor should we then, in friendship, choon
The man who only could amuse!
The sultry noontide of July
Next bids us seek the forest's shade; Or for the crystal streamlet sigh,
That flows in some scquestcr'd glade: Sated with sunshine and with flowers. We learn that life has languid hours.
And he who lives to Forty-two.
Nor has this needful truth been tanght.
That calm retirement must renew,
From time to time, the springs of thought.
Or who would such renewal Shun.
Is, by his folly, half undone!
'Tis not enough to say: "We know,
For noontide's fierce, unshaded glow
May wither, when it beams moat bright;
He that hopes evening's tranquil smile.
Must in his zenith pause awhile!
The husbandmen in August reap
Or, if the ling'ring season keep
Their recompense delay'd, will cast
A frequent glance around, and try
To guess what harvest may supply.
Thus too should man, at Fobtv-eight.
His mental crops should calculate.
'Tis prudent to look round, and sec
What such a Haeyest-iiowb may be!
September's morn and eve are chill.
Reminding us that time rolls on; And Winter, though delaying still
His wither'd features, woe-begone. On day's decreasing length encroaching. Gives token of his sure approaching.
And let not man at Fifty-four,
Though, like September's noon, he may, At times, be cloudless as of yore,
O'erlook its dawning, closing day;
The sere leaf, flitting on the blast,
Bespeak October come! At last
We stand on Winter's crumbling edge;
Like Nature's opening grave, we eye
The two brief months not yet gone by.
And he who has attain'd Three-score,
Must, in a few years, less or more,
And seek to stand aloof from all
That meditation might enthral.
November's clouds are gathering round,
And Nature, as with awe profound,
Watching the pale sun's fitful gleam
Through the dense fogs that veil his beam.
And thus, in human life's November,
'Tin time that man should oft remember
TrHC, he may linger to four-score,
But death is waiting at the door!
December closes on the scene;
And what appear the months gone past? Fragments of time, which once have been!
Succeeding slowly, fled too fast Their minutes, hours, and days appear Viewless in that small point, A Yeab!
The man, too, with the year has fled, Three-score And Twelve pronoune'd his doom;
As nature's beauties now seem dead,
Yet both a future life shall see;
His —prove an Immortality!
DAYS OF DARKNESS.
Ilut if a man live many yean, and rejoice in them all, yet let him remember the day of dark new, for they shall be many. Ecclrsi I>te>, Xi. 8.
I Have not yet lived many years.
Nor have those years been calmly bright; For many cares, and griefs, and fears,
Have darkly veil'd their light: Yet, even now, at times I deem,
To contemplation's pensive eye, Symptoms exist, by which 'twould seem
That darker days draw nigh.
The early flush of sanguine hope,
Which once, elate in confidence, With disappointment well could cope,
And wrestle with suspense;
Which by its own creative powers Could body forth, on earth below,
The forms of brighter bowers:
The young imaginings of thought,
Freshness of feeling,—all that made
At times seem wrapt in shade:
When dark and darker grows the gloom, Within whose depths obscure, half hid,
Appears the opening tomb!
I will not say that all is night;
For reason's pallid lamp,—the ray
At seasons let in day;
That soul-enthralling, fearful gloom Unfolds, when thus asunder riven,
A vista through the tomb.
But oh! within, above, around,
From which this painful truth is found-
And many a mournful sign appeals
Which, to my pensive thought, reveals
And let them come!—Shall man receive.
In this probationary state,
When He, as wise as great,
To send that salutary ill. Which, meekly borne, through love benign,
Effects his gracious will?
The cloudless glory of morn's sky,
Which ushers in a beauteous day. What time the viewless lark, on high,
('haunts forth his cheerful lay, Is beautiful; but clouds, and showers,
And mists, although they may appear Less lovely than those sun-bright hours.
To Nature are as dear.
The lavish luxury of Spring,
When flowers are bursting into bloom, And tints upon an insect's wing
Out-rival Oi inns loom;
A meek and quiet spirit gives,
When earth's brief path is trod, To those it bless'd—what still outlives
That spirit's senseless clod; Feelings and thoughts, in part divine, Which live along the length'ning line
Of being—up to God!
Believing such high destiny
To be thy blest estate; Immortal spirit! can I sigh
Thy lot to contemplate't No—and though little there might seem In thee for bard's, or painter's theme,
Of high, of rich, of great, Yet beyond rank, wealth, beauty,—all! I love thy virtue's gentler thrall.
IN FAN C Y.
The Snow-drop, herald of the spring,
In storm or sunshine born, Some passing images may bring
Of being's varied morn.
When blasts are chill, and clouds are dark,
Its helpless, fragile bloom Appears as set for misery's mark,
To sink in hopeless gloom.
If mild the gale, and bright the beam,
Its beauties charm the eye,
That summer-hours are nigh.
But trustless are the outward signs
Which waken hope or fear; The flower whose birth in sunlight shineB,
Chill blasts the soonest sere.
The bud that cold winds nipt at first.
A happier lot may know;
In brighter sunshine glow.
Thus shall the nursling of despair
And shine in after-life more fair
Than some whose morn was bright.
Light clouds, that pass in shadow o'er,
Soft showers may fall, yet these restore
And thus the shade on Boyhood's cheek
By smiles is chas'd away; The tear which transient grief would speak
But leaves the eye more gay.
The clouds whose darkness threatens life,
Winds of autumnal tone,
To it are things unknown.
Unknown to Boyhood, too, the stormi
O'er all the beauty that now forms
But mind, immortal, through the gloom
And know, when faded Boyhood's bloom. Fresh greenness in old age.
Thr Rose which greets the smile of June,
Unfolding in its joy,
May typify The Boy.
The ripen'd corn which clothes in gold
Is fair; as comely to behold
Hope to fruition now must yield,
The joy of harvest nigh,
Before the gazer's eye.
If cultureless that soil had laid,
Be what they might its light and shade.
Nor can mere Manhood bring to view Aught more to be enjoyed,
If the mind's spring and summer too Have pass'd by unemployed.
Yet sce'd well sown, and ripe to reap.
May profit fail to win; Prudence no jubilee will keep,
Unknown the gathering in.
When safe into the garner brought.
The triumph is secure; And then, alone, to grateful thought
The joy of harvest pure!