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O, green was the corn as I rode on my way,
And bright were the dews on the blossoms of May,
And dark was the sycamore's shade to behold,
And the oak’s tender leaf was of em'rald and gold.
The thrush from his holly, the lark from his cloud,
Their chorus of rapture sung jovial and loud;
From the soft vernal sky, to the soft grassy ground,
There was beauty above me, beneath, and around,
The mild southern breeze brought a shower from
And yet, though it left me all dripping and chill,
I felt a new pleasure, as onward I sped,
To gaze where the rainbow gleam'd broad over head.
O such be life's journey, and such be our skill,
To lose in its blessings the sense of its ill;
Through sunshine and shower, may our progress
even, And our tears add a charm to the prospect of Heaven!
'Twas not the moon in glory streaming,
As she swam forth from cloud concealing;
It was not meteor glance, nor light’ning,
The gorgeous concave instant brightning,
That rushing on the shepherd's eye,
Illumin'd heaven's vast canopy!
But, sailing down the radiant sky,
From bowers of bliss, from worlds on high
Appear'd, upborne on wings of fire,
A seraph host-an angel choir !
It came—that glorious embassy,
To hail the Incarnate Mystery!
For this awoke the extatic hymn,
From glowing lips of seraphim!
Ne'er flow'd such strains on earthly gale,
O'er breezy hill, or list'ning vale,
Before; nor shall such sounds again
Break on the raptur'd ear of men,
Till, rising to his native sky,
He put on immortality.
For this, too, flam’d o'er Bethlehem,
The brightest in night's diadem,
That herald star whose pilot ray
Illumin’d the Magi's doubtful way;
Bright wanderer through the fields of air,
Which led the enquiring sages where,
Cradl'd within a worthless manger,
Slept on that morn the Immortal Stranger.
He might have come in regal pomp,
With pealing of Archangel trump,
An angel blast as loud and dread,
As that which shall awake the dead;
His lightning might have scar'd the night,
Streaming insufferable light;
His thunder, deep’ning, peal on peal,
Have made earth to her centre reel,
Deep voices such as shook with fear,
At Sinai’s base, the favor'd seer;
The wing of whirlwind might have borne him;
The trampling earthquake
gone before him ; He might have come, that Holy One, With millions round his awful throne,
Countless as are the sands that lie
On burning plains of Araby,
And, arm’d for vengeance, who could stand
Before each conq’ring red right hand ?
He came not thus: no earthquake shock
Shiver'd the everlasting rock;
No trumpet blast, nor thunder peal,
Made earth through all her regions reel:
And but for the mysterious voicing
Of that unearthly choir rejoicing,
And but for that strange herald gem,
The star which burn'd o'er Bethlehem,
The shepherds, on his natal morn,
Had known not that the God was born.
There were no terrors; for the
Of peace rose from the seraph throng;
On wings of love he came,--to save,
To pluck pale terror from the grave;
And, on the blood-stain'd Calvary,
He won for Man the victory! Carrington.
(ON GIVING IT LIBERTY.) Poor harmless insect, thither fly,
And life's short hour enjoy;
'Tis all thou hast, and why should I
That little all destroy?
Why should my tyrant will suspend
A life by wisdom given
Or sooner bid thy being end
Than was design’d by Heav'n?
Lost to the joy which reason knows,
Ephemeron and frail, "Tis thine to wander where the rose
Perfumes the cooling gale.
To bask upon the sunny bed,
The damask flower to kiss,
To range along the bending shade
Is all thy little bliss.
Then flutter still thy silken wings,
In rich embroidery drest,
And sport upon the gale which flings
Sweet odours from his vest.
CREATION's Heir! the first, the last,
That knew the world his own:
Yet stood he midst his kingdom vast,
Faded and frail the glorious form,
And chang'd the soul within,
While pain and grief, and strife and storm,
Told the dark secret-SIN!
Unaided and alone on earth,
He bade the heavens give ear; But every star that
Kept silence in its sphere.
He saw round Eden's distant steep
Angelic legions stray;
Alas! they were but sent to keep
His guilty foot away!
Then turn’d he reckless to his own,
The world before him spread; But nature's was an alter’d tone,
And spake rebuke and dread. Fierce thunder-peal, and rocking gale,
Answer'd the storm-swept sea, While crashing forests join'd the wail,
And all said—“Cursed for thee !” This, spoke the lion's prowling roar;
And this the victim's cry;
This, written in defenceless gore,
For ever met his eye!
And not alone each fiercer power
Proclaim'd just Heaven's decree;
The faded leaf, the dying flower,
Alike said—“Cursed for thee !"
Though mortal, doom'd to many a length
Of life's now narrow span;
Sons rose around in pride and strength-
They, too, proclaim'd the ban.
'Twas heard amid their hostile spears;
Own'd in the murderer's doom;
Seen in the widow's silent tears,
Felt in the infant's tomb !
Ask not the Wanderer's after fate,
His being, birth, or name;
Enough that all have shar'd his state
That MAN is still the same.
Still briar and thorn his life o'ergrow;
Still strives his soul within;
And pain, and care, and sorrow shew
The same dark secret-SIN! J. Montgomery.