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It is a night, when from their primrose beds,
The gentle ghosts of injured innocents
Are known to rise, and wander on the breeze,
Or take their stand by the oppressor's couch,
And strike grim terror to his guilty soul.
The spirit of my love might now awake,
And hold its custom'd converse.
Thy Edward kneels upon thy verdant grave,
And calls upon thy name. The breeze that blows
On his wan cheek will soon sweep over him
In solemn music a funereal dirge,
Wild and most sorrowful. His cheek is pale,
The worm that prey'd upon thy youthful bloom
It canker'd green on his. Now lost he stands,
The ghost of what he was, and the cold dew,
Which bathes his aching temples, gives sure omen
Of speedy dissolution. Mary, soon
Thy love will lay his pallid cheek to thine,
And sweetly will he sleep with thee in death.
A LETTER ÎN HUDIBRASTIC VERSE.
You bid me, Ned, describe the place
Where I, one of the rhyming race,
Pursue my studies con amore,
And wanton with the muse in glory,
Well, figure to your senses straight,
Upon the house's topmost height,
A closet just six feet by four,
With whitewash'd walls and plaster floor.
So noble large, 'tis scarcely able
To admit a single chair and table:
And (lest the muse should die with cold)
A smoky grate my fire to hold :
So wondrous small, 'twould much it pose
To melt the icedrop on one's nose;
And yet so big, it covers o'er
Full half the spacious room and more.
A window vainly stuff'd about,
To keep November's breezes out,
So crazy, that the panes proclaim
That soon they mean to leave the frame.
My furniture I sure may crack-
A broken chair without a back;
A table wanting just two legs,
One end sustain’d by wooden pegs;
A desk—of that I am not fervent,
The work of, Sir, your humble servant;
(Who, though I say't, am no such fumbler ;)
A glass decanter and a tumbler,
From which my night-parch'd throat I lave,
Luxurious, with the limpid wave.
A chest of drawers, in antique sections,
And saw'd by me in all directions;
So small, Sir, that whoever views 'em
Swears nothing but a doll could use 'em.
To these, if you will add a store Of oddities upon the floor, A pair of globes, electric balls, Scales, quadrants, prisms, and cobbler's awls, And crowds of books, on rotten shelves, Octavos, folios, quartos, twelves ; I think, dear Ned, you curious dog, You'll have my earthly catalogue. But stay,- I nearly had left out My bellows destitute of snout ; And on the walls,-Good Heavens! why there I've such a load of precious ware, Of heads, and coins, and silver medals, And organ works, and broken pedals ; (For I was once a-building music, Though soon of that employ I grew sick); And skeletons of laws which shoot All out of one primordial root; That you, at such a sight, would swear Confusion's self had settled there. There stands, just by a broken sphere, A Cicero without an ear, A neck, on which, by logic good, I know for sure a head once stood; But who it was the able master Had moulded in the mimic plaster, Whether 'twas Pope, or Coke, or Burn, I never yet could justly learn : But knowing well, that any head Is made to answer for the dead,
(And sculptors first their faces frame,
And after pitch upon a name,
Nor think it aught of a misnomer
To christen Chaucer's busto Homer,
Because they both have beards, which, you know,
Will mark them well from Joan, and Juno,)
For some great man, I could not tell
But Neck might answer just as well,
So perch'd it up, all in a row
With Chatham and with Cicero.
Then all around, in just degree,
A range of portraits you may see,
Of mighty men and eke of women,
Who are no whit inferior to men.
With these fair dames, and heroes round,
I call my garret classic ground.
For though confined, 'twill well contain
The ideal flights of Madam Brain.
No dungeon's walls, no cell confined
Can cramp the energies of mind !
Thus, though my heart may seem so small,
I've friends, and 'twill contain them all;
And should it e'er become so cold
That these it will no longer hold,
No more may Heaven her blessings give,
I shall not then be fit to live.
DESCRIPTION OF A SUMMER'S EVE.
Down the sultry arc of day The burning wheels have urged their way; And eve along the western skies Sheds her intermingling dyes. Down the deep, the miry lane, Creaking comes the empty wain, And driver on the shaft-horse sits, Whistling now and then by fits : And oft with his accustom'd call, Urging on the sluggish Ball. The barn is still, the master's gone, And thresher puts his jacket on, While Dick, upon the ladder tall, Nails the dead kite to the wall. Here comes shepherd Jack at last, He has penn'd the sheepcote fast, For 'twas but two nights before, A lamb was eaten on the moor: His empty wallet Rover carries, Nor for Jack, when near home, tarries. With lolling tongue he runs to try If the horse-trough be not dry. . The milk is settled in the pans, And supper messes in the cans; In the hovel carts are wheeld, And both the colts are drove a-field;