Obrazy na stronie
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When through the tyrant's welcome means
I shall resign my life,

The God I serve will soon provide
For both my sons and wife.

Before I saw the lightsome sun,
This was appointed me;

Shall mortal man repine or grudge
What God ordains to be?

How oft in battle have I stood,
When thousands died around;

When smoking streams of crimson blood
Imbrued the fattened ground:

How did I know that every dart
That cut the airy way,

Might not find passage to my heart,
And close mine eyes for aye!

And shall I now, for fear of death,
Look wan and be dismayed

No! from my heart fly childish fear;
Be all the man displayed.

Ah, godlike Henry : God forefend,
And guard thee and thy son,
If 'tis his will; but if 'tis not,
Why, then his will be done.
My honest friend, my fault has been
To serve God and my prince;
And that I no time-server am,
My death will soon convince.

In London city was I born, Of parents of great note;

My father did a noble arms Emblazon on his coat:

I make no doubt but he is gone Where soon I hope to go,

Where we for ever shall be blest, From out the reach of wo.

He taught me justice and the laws With pity to unite;

And eke he taught me how to know The wrong cause from the right:

He taught me with a prudent hand
To feed the hungry poor,

Nor let my servants drive away
The hungry from my door:

And none can say but all my life
I have his wordis kept;

And summed the actions of the day
Each night before I slept.

I have a spouse, go ask of her if I defiled her bed :

I have a king, and none can lay Black treason on my head.

In Lent, and on the holy eve,
From flesh I did refrain;
Why should I then appear dismayed
To leave this world of pain?
No, hapless Henry ! I rejoice
I shall not see thy death;
Most willingly in thy just cause
Do I resign my breath.
Oh, fickle people ruined land
Thou o. peace no moe;
While Richard's sons exalt themselves,
Thy brooks with blood will flow.

Say, were ye tired of godly peace, And godly Henry's reign,

That you did chop' your easy days For those of blood and pain?

1 Exchange.

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The mystic mazes of thy will,
The shadows of celestial light,

Are past the power of human skill—
But what the Eternal acts is right.

O teach me in the trying hour,
When anguish swells the dewy tear,

To still my sorrows, own thy power,
Thy goodness love, thy justice fear.

If in this bosom aught but Thee
Encroaching sought a boundless sway,

Omniscience could the danger see,
And Mercy look the cause away.

Then why, my soul, dost thou complain :
Why drooping seek the dark recess?

Shake off the melancholy chain,
For God created all to bless.

But ah! my breast is human still—
The rising sigh, the falling tear,

My languid vitals' feeble rill,
The sickness of my soul declare.

But yet, with fortitude resigned,
I'll thank the inflicter of the blow;
Forbid the sigh, compose my mind,
Nor let the gush of misery flow.
The gloomy mantle of the night,
Which on my sinking spirits steals,
Will vanish at the morning light,
Which God, my East, my Sun, reveals.

WILLIAM FALCONER,

The terrors and circumstances of a Shipwreck had been often described by poets, ancient and modern, but never with any attempt at professional accuracy or minuteness of detail, before the poem of that name by Falconer. It was reserved for a genuine sailor to disclose, in correct and harmonious verse, the ‘secrets of the deep, and to enlist the sympathies of the general reader in favour of the daily life and occupations of his brother seamen, and in all the movements, the equipage, and tracery of those magnificent vessels which have carried the British name and enterprise to the remotest corners of the world. Poetical associations—a feeling of boundlessness and sublimity—obviously belonged to the scene of the poem—the ocean; but its interest soon wanders from this source, and centres in the stately ship and its crew—the gallant resistance which the men made to the fury of the storm—their calm and deliberate courage—the various resources of their skill and ingenuity—their consultations and resolutions as the ship labours in distress—and the brave unselfish piety and generosity with which they meet their fate, when at last

The crashing ribs divide— She loosens, parts, and spreads in ruin o'er the tide.

Such a subject Falconer justly considered as “new to epic lore, but it possessed strong recommendations to the British public, whose national pride and honour are so closely identified with the sea, and so many of whom have “some friend, some brother there.” WILLIAM FALconER was born in Edinburgh in 1730, and was the son of a poor barber, who had two other children, both of whom were deaf and dumb. He went early to sea, on board a Leith merchant ship, and was afterwards in the royal navy. Before he was eighteen years of age, he was second mate in the Britannia, a vessel in the Levant trade, which was shipwrecked off Cape Colonna, as described in his poem. In 1751 he was living in Edinburgh, where he published his first poetical *

a monody on the death of Frederick, Prince of Wales. The choice of such a subject by a young friendless Scottish sailor, was as singular as the depth of grief he describes in his poem; for Falconer, on this occasion, wished, with a zeal worthy of ancient Pistol,

To assist the pouring rains with brimful eyes, And aid hoarse howling Boreas with his sighs!

In 1757 he was promoted to the quarter-deck of the Ramilies, and being now in a superior situation for cultivating his taste for learning, he was an assiduous student. Three years afterwards, Falconer suffered a second shipwreck; the Ramilies struck on the shore in the Channel while making for Plymouth, and of 734 of a crew, the poet and 25 others only escaped. In 1762 appeared his poem of The Shipwreck (which he afterwards greatly enlarged and improved), preceded by a dedication to the Duke of York. The work was eminently successful, and his royal highness procured him the appointment of midshipman on board the Royal George, whence he was subsequently transferred to the Glory, a frigate of 32 guns, on board which he held the situation of purser. After the peace, he resided in London, wrote a poor satire on Wilkes, Churchill, &c., and compiled a useful marine dictionary. In September 1769, the poet again took to the sea, and sailed from England as purser of the Aurora frigate, bound for India. The vessel reached the Cape of Good Hope in December, but afterwards perished at sea, having foundered, as is supposed, in the Mosambique Channel. No “tuneful Arion' was left to commemorate this calamity, the poet having died under the circumstances he had formerly described in the case of his youthful associates of the Britannia.

“The Shipwreck’ has the rare merit of being a pleasing and interesting poem, and a safe guide to practical seamen. Its nautical rules and directions are approved of by all experienced naval officers. At first, the poet does not seem to have done more than describe in nautical phrase and simple narrative the melancholy disaster he had witnessed. The characters of Albert, Rodmond, Palemon, and Anna, were added in the second edition of the work. By choosing the shipwreck of the Britannia, Falconer imparted a train of interesting recollections and images to his poem. The wreck occurred off Cape Colonna—one of the fairest portions of the beautiful shores of Greece. “In all Attica,’ says Lord Byron, “if we except Athens itself and Marathon, there is no scene more interesting than Cape Colonna. To the antiquary and artist, sixteen columns are an inexhaustible source of observation and design; to the philosopher, the supposed scene of some of Plato's conversations will not be unwelcome; and the traveller will be struck with the beauty of the prospect over “isles that crown the AEgean deep;” but for an Englishman, Colonna has yet an additional interest, as the actual spot of Falconer's Shipwreck. Pallas and Plato are often in the recollection of Falconer and Camp

ll—

Here in the dead of night by Lonna's steep,
The seaman's cry was heard along the deep.’”

Falconer was not insensible to the charms of these historical and classic associations, and he was still more alive to the impressions of romantic scenery and a genial climate. Some of the descriptive and episodical parts of the poem are, however, drawn out to too great a length, as they interrupt the narrative where its interest is most engrossing, besides being occasionally feeble and affected. The cha

* Pleasures of Hope.

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The sun's bright orb, declining all serene,
Now glanced obliquely o'er the woodland scene.
Creation smiles around ; on every spray
The warbling birds exalt their evening lay.
Blithe skipping o'er yon hill, the fleecy train
Join the deep chorus of the lowing plain;
The golden lime and orange there were seen,
On fragrant branches of perpetual green.
The crystal streams, that velvet meadows lave,
To the green ocean roll with chiding wave.
The glassy ocean hushed forgets to roar,
But trembling murmurs on the sandy shore:
And lo! his surface, lovely to behold !
Glows in the west, a sea of living gold !
While, all above, a thousand liveries gay
The skies with pomp ineffable array.
Arabian sweets perfume the happy plains:
Above, beneath, around enchantment reigns!
While yet the shades, on time's eternal scale,
With long vibration deepen o'er the vale;
While yet the songsters of the vocal grove
With dying numbers tune the soul to love,
With joyful eyes the attentive master sees
The auspicious omens of an eastern breeze.
Now radiant Vesper leads the st train,
And night slow draws her veil o'er land and main ;
Round the charged bowl the sailors form a ring;
By turns recount the wondrous tale, or sing;
As love or battle, hardships of the main,
Or genial wine, awake their homely strain:
Then some the watch of night alternate keep,
The rest lie buried in oblivious sleep.
Deep midnight now involves the livid skies,
While infant breezes from the shore arise.
The waning moon, behind a watery shroud,
Pale-glimmered o'er the long-protracted cloud.
A mighty ring around her silver throne,
With parting meteors crossed, portentous shone.
This in the troubled sky full oft prevails;
Oft deemed a signal of tempestuous gales.

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