Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB

were unequal to the burden. She returned to her cottage at Tomhanick where she died on the 23d of November, 1783, at the age of 31.

Mrs Bleecker's poetry is not of that high order which would sustain itself under any very bold attempt; but the events of her life confer a degree of interest upon the few productions which she has left behind her. A female cultivating the elegant arts of refined society at the ultima Thule of civilized life, in regions of savage wildness, and among scenes of alarm, desolation, and bloodshed, is a spectacle too striking not to fix our attention.

TO MISS TEN EYCK.

DEAR Kitty, while you rove through sylvan bowers,
Inhaling fragrance from salubrious flowers,
Or view your blushes mantling in the stream,
When Luna gilds it with her amber beam;
The brazen voice of war awakes our fears,
Impearling every damask cheek with tears.

The savage, rushing down the echoing vales,
Frights the poor hind with ill portending yells ;
A livid white his consort's cheeks invest;
She drops her blooming infant from her breast;
She tries to fly, but quick recoiling sees
The painted Indian issuing from the trees;
Then life suspensive sinks her on the plain,
Till dire explosions wake her up again.
Oh, horrid sight! her partner is no more;
Pale is his corse, or only tinged with gore;
Her playful babe is dash'd against the stones,
Its scalp torn off, and fractured all its bones.
Where are the dimpling smiles it lately wore ?
Ghastly in agony it smiles no more!
Dumb with amaze, and stupefied with grief,
The captured wretch must now attend her chief:
Reluctantly she quits the scene of blood,
When lo! a sudden light illumes the wood;
She turns, and sees the rising fires expand,
And conflagration roll through half the land;
The western flames to orient skies are driven,
And change the azure to a sable heaven.

Such are our woes, my dear, and be it known
Many still suffer what I tell of one:
No more Albania's sons in slumber lie,
When Cynthia's crescent gleams along the sky;
But every street patrole, and through the night
Their beamy arms reflect a dreadful light.

Excuse, dear girl, for once this plaintive strain;
I must conclude, lest I transgress again.

TO MR BLEECKER, ON HIS PASSAGE TO NEW YORK.

SHALL fancy still pursue the expanding sails,
Calm Neptune's brow, or raise impelling gales?
Or with her Bleecker ply the laboring oar,
When pleasing scenes invite him to the shore,
There with him through the fading valleys rove,
Bless'd in idea with the man I love?
Methinks I see the broad majestic sheet
Swell to the wind; the flying shores retreat:
I see the banks, with varied foliage gay,
Inhale the misty sun's reluctant ray:
The lofty groves stripp'd of their verdure, rise
To the inclernence of autumnal skies.

Rough mountains now appear, while pendant woods
Hang o'er the gloomy steep and shade the floods ;
Slow moves the vessel, while each distant sound
The cavern’d echoes doubly loud rebound:
A placid stream meanders on the steep,
Till tumbling from the cliff, divides the frowning deep.

Oh tempt not fate on those stupendous rocks,
Where never shepherd led his timid flocks ;
But shagged bears in those wild deserts stray,
And wolves, who howl against the lunar ray:
There builds the ravenous hawk her lofty nest,
And there the soaring eagle takes her rest ;
The solitary deer recoils to hear
The torrent thundering in the midway air.
Ah! let me intercede-Ah! spare her breath,
Nor aim the tube charged with a leaden death.

But now advancing to the opening sea,
The wind springs up, the lessening mountains flee;
The eastern banks are crown'd with rural seats,
And nature's work the hand of art completes.
Here Philips' villa, where Pomona joins
At once the product of a hundred climes;

Here, tingad by Flosa, Asian flowers unfold
Their burnish'd leaves of vegetable gold.
When snows descend, and clouds tumultuously fly
Through the blue medium of the crystal sky,
Beneath his painted mimic heaven he roves
Amidst the glass-encircled citron groves;
The grape and luscious fig his taste invite,
Hesperian apples glow upon his sight;
The sweet auriculas their bells display,
And Philips finds in January, May.

But on the other side the cliffs arise,
Charybdis like, and seem to prop the skies :
How oft with admiration have we view'd
Those adamantine barriers of the flood ?
Yet still the vessel cleaves the liquid mead,
The prospect dies, the aspiring rocks recede;
New objects rush upon the wondering sight,
Till Phæbus rolls from heaven his car of light,
And Cynthia's silver crescent gilds the night.

I hear the melting flute's melodious sound,
Which dying zephyrs waft alternate round,
The rocks in notes responsive soft complain,
And think Amphion strikes his lyre again.
Ah! 't is my Bleecker breathes our mutual loves,
And sends the trembling airs through vocal groves.

Thus having led you to the happy isle
Where waves circumfluent wash the fertile soil,
Where Hudson, meeting the Atlantic, roars,
The parting lands dismiss him from their shores;
Indulge the enthusiast muse her favorite strain
Of panegyric, due to Eboracia’s plain.

There is no land where heaven her blessings pours
In such abundance, as upon these shores ;
With influence benign the planets rise,
Pure is the ether, and serene the skies ;
With annual gold kind Ceres decks the ground,
And gushing springs dispense bland health around:
No lucid gems are here, or flaming ore,
To tempt the hand of avarice and power:
But sun-burnt labor, with diurnal toil,
Bids treasures rise from the obedient soil,
And commerce calls the ships across the main,
For gold exchanging her superfluous grain;
Whilo concord, liberty, and jocund health
Sport with young pleasure 'mid the rural wealth.

AN EVENING PROSPECT.

COME, my Susan, quit your chamber,

Greet the opening bloom of May, Let us up yon hillock clamber,

And around the scene survey. See the sun is now descending,

And projects his shadows far, And the bee her course is bending

Homeward through the humid air.

Mark the lizard just before us,

Singing her unvaried strain, While the frog abrupt in chorus,

Deepens through the marshy plain. From yon grove the woodcock rises,

Mark her progress by her notes, High in air her wings she poises,

Then like lightning down she shoots.

Now the whip-o-will beginning,

Clamorous on a pointed rail, Drowns the more melodious singing

Of the catbird, thrush, and quail.

Pensive Echo, from the mountain,

Still repeats the sylvan sounds, And the crocus-border'd fountain

With the splendid fly abounds.

There the honeysuckle blooming,

Reddens the capricious wave;
Richer sweets—the air perfuming,

Spicy Ceylon never gave.
Cast your eyes beyond this meadow,

Painted by a hand divine,
And observe the ample shadow

Of that solemn ridge of pine.

Here a trickling rill depending,

Glitters through the artless bower ; And the silver dew descending,

Doubly radiates every flower.

While I speak, the sun is vanish’d,

All the gilded clouds are fled,
Music from the groves is banish'd,

Noxious vapors round us spread.

Rural toil is now suspended,

Sleep invades the peasant's eyes,
Each diurnal task is ended,

While soft Luna climbs the skies.

Queen of rest and meditation,

Through thy medium I adore
Him—the author of creation,

Infinite, and boundless power.

'Tis he who fills thy urn with glory,

Transcript of immortal light;
Lord! my spirit bows before thee,

Lost in wonder and delight.

PEACE.

All hai), vernal Phæbus ! all hail, ye soft breezes!

Announcing the visit of spring ;
How green are the meadows! the air how it pleases !

How gleefully all the birds sing !

Begone, ye rude tempests, nor trouble the ether,

Nor let blushing Flora complain,
While her pencil was tinging the tulip, bad weather
Had blasted the promising gem.

From its verdant unfoldings, the timid narcissus

Now shoots out a diffident bud;
Begone ye rude tempests, for sure as it freezes

Ye kill this bright child of the wood:

And peace gives new charms to the bright beaming season ;

The groves we now safely explore,
Where murdering banditti, the dark sons of treason,
Were shelter'd and awed as before.

19

VOL. I.

« AnteriorContinuar »