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Pelf is our god; it is the mighty call,
Set up for worship by the richer half;
If a man dies, his pockets stuffed with gold,
(Although his head be of a monkey's mould,
A species spoken of, by some old scribe,
As ihe last link between us and that iribe;)
Although, leech-like, the poor man's blood he drew,
And played the tyranı — when he could, the Jew ;
Took the last rag the greedy law allowed,
And stood unmoved, when Pity cricd aloud ;
Wall-street's in tcars; the brokers dress in black,
And e'en the papers weep among the pack;
And tell in prini how rich, 'first in the van,
And, awful! – died, just like another man!

But the warm heart that lights the poor man's door,
And puts a song where groans were heard before ;
Whose hand and purse the suffering man consoles,
Evades the proud, and dwells with humble souls ;
Whose daily deeds a fragrance leave behind,
The precious balm of love to all mankind;
Who shrinks disgusted from the money.god,
And hates the arın that sways a golden rod,
In silence falls! So, in the quiet wood,
The aged oak that grew in solitude,
Falls to the earth, from its own lowering height,
And sleeps obscurely in its innate might.
The public mind is wrong: the frugal swain,
Who builds on labor for a future name,
Steers his frail barque in waters near the shore,
Till time and strength permits bis 'venture more;'
Maintains his honor, howsoever strong
Temptation lures him with her syren song,
Is overlooked; while shallow, useless fops,
Tricked out from half a dozen dry-goods shops,
Who wiggle through the streets, and twirl their canes,
With heads of sap, that look like heads with brains;
Worth but their bark, like trees of cinnamon,
And e'en for that, do daily meet a dun;
These moving shops of lavender and tapes,
Who chatter nonsense like so many apes,
Can swindle twenty thousand at a dash,
And play the fool with their ill-gotton cash;
And half the people, so corrupi the times,
Wink their applause at such state-prison crimes !

• In a republic like ours, where a man is said to be 'worth so much,' according to the amount of wealth which he possesses, the inculcatious of theso extracts may prove salutary. The entire poem, which is too long for these pages, has been placed in our hands by the author, for promulgation in anotber form, should any metropolitan publisher be desirous of undertaking the venture of a thin poctical pampblet

Eds. KNICKERBOCKER.

And thus it is; while solid Virtue's sneered,
Repulsive Vice is tacitly revered ;
And honest men see how the current drives,
Turn knaves by force, to save their very lives !

There's Tom, the cobbler, honest and sincere,
Hard at his bench, for twenty pounds a-year;
His name his all; his work-shop's humble walls,
Reared against hunger, where he stands or falls;
By Wealth regarded as a mere machine,
Wound up at birth, like clocks, by the Supreme.
He finds few friends, meets no familiar nod,
Among the kneelers at the golden god;
Although as pure as was apostle Paul,
'One thing he lacks — of course he lacketh all !
But lo! dame Fortune, in a lucky hour,
Rains down her wealth - converts him by the shower;
Changes his nature, and destroys within,
His wicked spirit, poverty, and sin;
Instead of Tom,'"'t is Thomas Browne, Esquire,'
'Your humble servant,' meets him every where;
New friends, upbraided with their past neglect,
Declare they always had a great respect!'
That something noble, in his humble days,
Showed his great soul; that he was born to raise !'

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A poor man, though the very king of wit,
Is but an ass, and cannot make a hit;
Rich block heads say it is the common fate
Of brains and purses to agree in weight;
And splendid men are branded from their birth
With dollar-marks, that tell their mental worth!
A ‘common liver,' though with Garrick's style,
Draws but a sickly, half-extinguished smile;
His finest strokes are rated so much chafi,
And only worth a fifty dollar laugh;
But bass-wood heads, with thousands, say four-score,
Make every corner in the city roar;
A million ! and no Solomon more wise;
Wisdom and fortune are of equal size:
And though as stupid as a bag of straw,
His wink's enough – such stamping and hurrah!

‘Rothschild, the Rich,' is shouted in the crowd ;
' Howard, the Good,''is scarcely breathed aloud !
An idol one, adored for gold alone,
The other half divine, yet scarcely known;
Fierce as a blood-hound on the smoking track,
See Rothschild move, though empires 'bend and crack;'
Howard, as dew upon the withering rose,
His balm to blasted hearts the poor man knows;
And e'en in death, Rothschild, the Shylock name,
Will stand the highest on our scrolls of fame!

Behold the dark machinery of 'stocks !'
Prices alone are seen, like hands to clocks;
'Tis all a splendid game of luck and chance,
And some must sigh, while others sing and dance.
The vilest gambler, in his keenest zeal,
Knows not more frenzy than these gamesters feel ;
The lowest 'black-leg' in the list of shame,
Reflecis, 'looks out,' and plays the self-same game;
There is a sufferer for each one that makes,
An equal triumph, when he'sweeps the stakes;'
And yet the father, gaming day by day,
Who hazards thousands in the mighty play,
With admonition, warns his darling son
'Gainst shuffling cards, and such like 'vulgar run;'
'Forbid, Oh! God! a child that games and swears !'
He lifts his eyes, and piously declares.

68

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VOL. XIII.

BEARDING A SEA LION IN HIS DEN.

BY

J. N. REYNOLDS, ESQ.

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The island of Staten Land, which lies south-east of Terra del Fuego, from which it is separated by the Strait le Maire, when seen from a short distance, has a most barren and forbidding appearance; but such is not its real character. The tops of the mountains, composed of immense masses of granite, produce, it is true, little vegetation ; but on their sides, and what may be called the low-lands, there is a rich thick mould, formed by the decomposition of their natural productions, and beautified with the most luxuriant verdure.

Near the entrance of Port Hatches, is a cavern, long known as the retreat of a few patriarchs of the ocean, to whom its deep recesses had been, until the period of which I am about to speak, a safe protection. The opening of this sea-lion's den is about thirty feet in width, its base being on a level with the sea, at low water mark. The whole length of the cave, beneath the base of the precipice, is two hundred and twenty paces, beautifully arched over with stalactites, and in some places changing its course from a direct line, and forming little apertures, which communicate with the main entrance.

To enter this cavern, explore its secret chambers, and provoke a combat with the ancient holders and proprietors of this wild citadel, was the object of one of our boat excursions. Preparatory to our advance into this

cavern hoar, That stands all lonely on the sea-beat shore,' fires were placed, one after another, with a distance of thirty yards between each two, to answer the double purpose of guiding our progress, and of securing a speedy retreat, should we be too roughly received by the old phoca, who, with a number of clap-matches in his suite, had taken up a position in the farthest corner of the den.

With lighted torches, we now advanced into the abyss, which the ancient Romans would have consecrated to deified nymphs, and the Persians have assigned as the seat of their god Mithras. The fires cast a dim, flickering light, which rendered visible the darkness in our rear. Every thing around us seemed to partake of the gloomy silence of the tomb, until the stillness was suddenly broken by the roar of the old lion, more appalling, by far, than that of his fierce namesake, of the Moorish plains. Having approached so near that we could see the monster's glaring eye-balls, we discharged our muskets, and continued, alternately retiring to load, and advancing to fire, until our ears were stunned, and our heads bewildered, with the reverberations of the reports, mingled with the roarings of the whole maddened group, now closely pressed, and severely wounded.

Our lights failing for an instant, we retreated to replenish them. The lashings of the waves at the mouth of the cavern, though distant, echoed and rumbled so loudly through the vaulted passages,

that we could not hear each others' voices. As we again moved forward, to discharge our pieces, the old sea-lion broke out into a new par

oxysm

of rage, tearing up the gravel and rocks with his claws and teeth. The white foam, mixed with blood, dropped from his large red tongue; while so hoarse, so loud and deafening, was his howl, that we were obliged to stop our ears with our hands, to prevent being pained by it.

The scene around us had now indeed become one of inconceivable wildness and horror. Two hundred paces within the mouth of a cave which man had never before entered, the dim flickering light of our torches, and the decaying fires in our rear, together with the suffocating smoke from the frequent firing, rendered it necessary to retrograde. Nor did we commence retreating a moment too soon. Wounded and infuriate, the old lion now began to move toward us, as we gradually returned, step by step, throwing stones and firebrands, to keep him in check, until we had reached so near the mouth of the cavern, that with deliberate aim, Captain Palmer, of the Penguin, shot him. This was his death wound, although he had previously received no less than ten balls.

After recruiting our fires with the blubber of our victim, we returned to the charge; and soon succeeded in taking the remaining five females and their pups. The old sea-lion (phoca jubata,) measured ten feet six inches in length, and eight feet round the shoulders ; and, as we supposed, could not weigh less than four hundred pounds. The females were from six to seven feet in length, and of a more slender form.

VISIT TO A PENGUIN ROOKERY.

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We next visited the 'King Penguin Rookery,' about two miles west of the harbor; and we do not believe the whole range of natural history can furnish a more interesting spectacle. Indeed, to an enthusiastic admirer of nature, this curiosity alone is worth a voyage to Staten Land. The King Penguins stand perfectly erect; they measure from two and a half to three feet in height, and each weigh from thirty to forty pounds. Their color is a delicate pale ash, breast white, bili long and tapering; with two yellow streaks around the neck, like a cravat. Oftheir number, we could form no just estimate; but the beach, for more than a mile, was covered with them, standing and moving in squads, or solid columns, of from one to four, and six hundred birds. When viewed from a distance, they appeared like an army, performing its evolutions, rather than any thing else to which we can compare them.

Extending back from the shore, in this part of the island, is a prairie, or low marsh, covered with a luxuriant growth of coarse grass, through which the penguins had made their little roads, and where they were formed in small companies, more than a mile inland. They betrayed little apprehension on being approached, and would often stand still, holding down their heads to have their necks patted, and feathers smoothed down. We took three of them on board, where they remained for some time, making no effort to escape, and apparently not insensible to kind treatment. The sea, however, is their favorite element, and in its waters they are perfectly at home. The peacock is not vainer of its gaudy plumes, than is the penguin of the garb in which the Creator has arrayed him. These birds go

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into the water, by hundreds at a time, seemingly for no other purpose than to clean and adjust their plumage. In these ablutions, their antics are exceedingly amusing. They swim alternately on their sides and backs, and dive in the most frolicsome mood. After indulging in these exercises, they again join their companions on the shore, and strut about in the most exulting pride. The female penguin, in the first instance, lays but one egg; but, if deprived of it, will lay a second, and so on to the number of four or five. The egg weighs a pound, and is not so rancid as that of the common domestic goose.

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Sharing not the wordy quarrel,

For a thorny crown of power ;
Struggling noi to win a laurel,

Frailer than the summer flower :

VI.

In secluded paths of duty,

Only by the humble trod,
Live I, blest with dreams of beauty,

Hope for man, and trust in God!

* Won by the charming pathos and bappy melody of H. W. LONGFELLOW's' Psalms of Life,'I have perhaps too daringly, attempted a few stanzas in the same vein. Should my presumption be attended with failure, I can at least solace myself with the thought, that I have, in these pages as well as elsewhere, borne testimony to my fervent admiration of the genius of my accomplished friend.

P. U.

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