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XL.

UPON SEEING A COLOURED DRAWING OF THE BIRD

OF PARADISE IN AN ALBUM.

By charities and duties that proceed
Out of the bosom of a wiser vow.
To a like salutary sense of awe
Or sacred wonder, growing with the power
Of meditation that attempts to weigh,
In faithful scales, things and their opposites,
Can thy enduring quiet gently raise
A household small and sensitive,—whose love,
Dependent as in part its blessings are
Upon frail ties dissolving or dissolved
On earth, will be revived, we trust, in heaven.

1834

XL.

So fair, so sweet, withal so sensitive,
Would that the little Flowers were born to live,
Conscious of half the pleasure which they give;

Who rashly strove thy Image to portray?
Thou buoyant minion of the tropic air;
How could he think of the live creature-gay
With a divinity of colours, drest
In all her brightness, from the dancing crest
Far as the last gleam of the filmy train
Extended and extending to sustain
The motions that it gracesand forbear
To drop his pencil! Flowers of every clime
Depicted on these pages smile at time;
And gorgeous insects copied with nice care
Are here, and likenesses of many a shell
Tossed ashore by restless waves,
Or in the diver’s grasp fetched up from caves
Where sea-nymphs might be proud to dwell :
But whose rash hand (again I ask) could dare,
'Mid casual tokens and promiscuous shows,
To circumscribe this Shape in fixed repose ;
Could imitate for indolent survey,
Perhaps for touch profane,
Plumes that might catch, but cannot keep, a stain;
And, with cloud-streaks lightest and loftiest, share
The sun's first greeting, his last farewell ray!

That to this mountain-daisy's self were known The beauty of its star-shaped shadow, thrown On the smooth surface of this naked stone!

And what if hence a bold desire should mount High as the Sun, that he could take account Of all that issues from his glorious fount !

So might he ken how by his sovereign aid
These delicate companionships are made ;
And how he rules the pomp of light and shade ;

And were the Sister-power that shines by night
So privileged, what a countenance of delight
Would through the clouds break forth on human

sight!

Fond fancies ! wheresoe'er shall turn thine eye On earth, air, ocean, or the starry sky, Converse with Nature in pure sympathy ;

All vain desires, all lawless wishes quelled, Be Thou to love and praise alike impelled, Whatever boon is granted or withheld.

Resplendent Wanderer ! followed with glad eyes Where'er her course; mysterious Bird ! To whom, by wondering Fancy stirred, Eastern Islanders have given A holy name—the Bird of Heaven! And even a title higher still, The Bird of God! whose blessed will She seems performing as she flies Over the earth and through the skies In never-wearied search of ParadiseRegion that crowns her beauty with the name She bears for us—for us how blest, How happy at all seasons, could like aim Uphold our Spirits urged to kindred flight On wings that fear no glance of God's pure sight, No tempest from his breath, their promised rest Seeking with indefatigable quest Above a world that deems itself most wise When most enslaved by gross realities !

* In the class entitled “ Musings," in Mr. Southey's Minor Poems, is one upon his own miniature Picture, taken in childhood, and another upon a landscape painted by Gaspar Poussin. It is possible that every word of the above verses, though similar in subject, might have been written had the author been upacquainted with those beautiful effusions of poetic sentiment. But, for his own satisfaction, he must be allowed thus publicly to acknowledge the pleasure those two Poems of his Friend have given him, and the grateful influence they have upon his mind as often as he reads them, or thinks of them.

1836.

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All Powers and Places that abhor the light Joined in the transport, echoed back their shout, Hurrah for -, hugging his Ballot-box!

IV.

They thus would rise, must low and lower sink
Till, by repentance stung, they fear to think;
While all lie prostrate, save the tyrant few
Bent in quick turns each other to undo,
And mix the poison, they themselves must drink.
Mistrust thyself, vain Country! cease to cry,
“Knowledge will save me from the threatened woe."
For, if than other rash ones more thou know,
Yet on presumptuous wing as far would fly
Above thy knowledge as they dared to go,
Thou wilt provoke a heavier penalty.

II.

Blest Statesman He, whose Mind's unselfish will Leaves him at ease among grand thoughts: whose Sees that, apart from magnanimity,

[eye Wisdom exists not; nor the humbler skill Of Prudence, disentangling good and ill With patient care.

What tho' assaults run high, They daunt not him who holds his ministry, Resolute, at all hazards, to fulfil Its duties ;-prompt to move, but firm to wait,Knowing, things rashly sought are rarely found; That, for the functions of an ancient State Strong by her charters, free because imbound, Servant of Providence, not slave of FatePerilous is sweeping change, all chance unsound.

UPON THE LATE GENERAL FAST.

March, 1832.

V.

RELUCTANT call it was; the rite delayed;
And in the Senate some there were who doffed
The last of their humanity, and scoffed
At providential judgments, undismayed
By their own daring. But the People prayed
As with one voice; their finty heart grew soft
With penitential sorrow, and aloft
Their spirit mounted, crying, “God us aid!”
Oh that with aspirations more intense,
Chastised by self-abasement more profound,
This People, once so happy, so renowned
For liberty, would seek from God defence
Against far heavier ill, the pestilence
Of revolution, impiously unbound !

IN ALLUSION TO VARIOUS RECENT HISTORIES AND

NOTICES OF THE FRENCH REVOLUTION.

III.

PORTENTOUS change when History can appear
As the cool Advocate of foul device;
Reckless audacity extol, and jeer
At consciences perplexed with scruples nice!
They who bewail not, must abhor, the sneer
Born of Conceit, Power's blind Idolater;
Or haply sprung from vaunting Cowardice
Betrayed by mockery of holy fear.
Hath it not long been said the wrath of Man
Works not the righteousness of God? Oh bend,
Bend, ye Perverse! to judgments from on High,
Laws that lay under Heaven's perpetual ban
All principles of action that transcend
The sacred limits of humanity.

Said Secrecy to Cowardice and Fraud, Falsehood and Treachery, in close council met, Deep under ground, in Pluto's cabinet, “ The frost of England's pride will soon be thawed; “ Hooded the open brow that overawed “ Our schemes ; the faith and honour, never yet

VI.

IX.

TO THE PENNSYLVANIANS.

CONTINUED.

Wło ponders National events shall find
An awful balancing of loss and gain,
Joy based on sorrow, good with ill combined,
And proud deliverance issuing out of pain
And direful throes ; as if the All-ruling Mind,
With whose perfection it consists to ordain
Volcanic burst, earthquake, and hurricane,
Dealt in like sort with feeble human kind
By laws immutable. But woe for him
Who thus deceived shall lend an eager hand
To social havoc. Is not Conscience ours,
And Truth, whose eye guilt only can make dim;
And Will, whose office, by divine command,
Is to control and check disordered Powers ?

Days undefiled by luxury or sloth,
Firm self-denial, manners grave and staid,
Rights equal, laws with cheerfulness obeyed,
Words that require no sanction from an oath,
And simple honesty a common growth-
This high repute, with bounteous Nature's aid,
Won confidence, now ruthlessly betrayed
At will, your power the measure of your troth !-
All who revere the memory of Penn
Grieve for the land on whose wild woods his name
Was fondly grafted with a virtuous aim,
Renounced, abandoned by degenerate Men
For state-dishonour black as ever came
To upper air from Mammon's loathsome den.

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LONG-PAVOURED England! be not thou misled
By monstrous theories of alien growth,
Lest alien frenzy seize thee, waxing wroth,
Self-smitten till thy garments reek dyed red
With thy own blood, which tears in torrents shed
Fail to wash out, tears flowing ere thy troth
Be plighted, not to ease but sullen sloth,
Or wan despair-the ghost of false hope fled
Into a shameful grave. Among thy youth,
My Country! if such warning be held dear,
Then shall a Veteran's heart be thrilled with joy,
One who would gather from eternal truth,
For time and season, rules that work to cheer-
Not scourge, to save the People—not destroy.

Au why deceive ourselves ! by no mere fit
Of sudden passion roused shall men attain
True freedom where for ages they have lain
Bound in a dark abominable pit,
With life's best sinews more and more uriknit.
Here, there, a banded few who loathe the chain
May rise to break it: effort worse than vain
For thee, O great Italian nation, split
Into those jarring fractions.—Let thy scope
Be one fixed mind for all; thy rights approve
To thy own conscience gradually renewed ;
Learn to make Time the father of wise Hope ;
Then trust thy cause to the arm of Fortitude,
The light of Knowledge, and the warmth of Love.

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Men of the Western World ! in Fate's dark book HARD task! exclaim the undisciplined, to lean
Whence these opprobrious leaves of dire portent? On Patience coupled with such slow endeavour,
Think ye your British Ancestors forsook

That long-lived servitude must last for ever.
Their native Land, for outrage provident ;

Perish the grovelling few, who, prest between From unsubmissive necks the bridle shook

Wrongs and the terror of redress, would wean To give, in their Descendants, freer vent

Millions from glorious aims. Our chains to sever And wider range to passions turbulent,

Let us break forth in tempest now or never ! To mutual tyranny a deadlier look?

What, is there then no space for golden mean Nay, said a voice, soft as the south wind's breath, And gradual progress ?—Twilight leads to day, Dive through the stormy surface of the flood And, even within the burning zones of earth, To the great current flowing underneath ;

The hastiest sunrise yields a temperate ray; Explore the countless springs of silent good ; The softest breeze to fairest flowers gives birth : So shall the truth be better understood,

Think not that Prudence dwells in dark abodes, And thy grieved Spirit brighten strong in faith. She scans the future with the eye of gods.

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SONNETS DEDICATED TO LIBERTY AND ORDER.

XII.

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In the true filial boson's inmost fol
For ever.— The Spirit of Alfred, at the head

Of all who for her rights watehd, toild and bled,
COXCLUDED.

Knows that this propheey is not too bold.

What-how! shall she submit in will and deed
As leaves are to the tree whereon they grow To Beardless Boys-an imitative race,
And wither, every human generation

The xrrum pecus of a Gallie breed!
Is to the Being of a mighty nation,

Dear Mother! if thou nest thy steps retrace, Locked in our world's embrace through weal and Go where at least meek Innoceney dwells; woe;

Let Babes and Sucklings be thy oracles.
Thought that should teach the zealot to forego
Rash schemes, to abjure all selfish agitation,
And seek through noiseless pains and moderation

XIV.
The unblernished good they only can bestow.
Alas! with most, who weigh futurity

Feel for the wrongs to universal ken
Against time present, passion holds the scales: Daily exposed, woe that unshrouded lies;
Hence equal ignorance of both prevails,

And seek the Sufferer in his darkest den,
And nations sink; or, struggling to be free,

Whether conducted to the spot by sighs
Are doomed to flounder on, like wounded whales And moanings, or he dwells (as if the wren
Tossed on the bosom of a stormy sea.

Taught him concealment) hidden from all eyes
In silence and the awful modesties
Of sorrow ;-feel for all, as brother Men!

Rest not in hope want's icy chain to thaw
XII.

By casual boons and formal charities;
Young ExGLAND—what is then become of Old Learn to be just, just through impartial law;
Of dear Old England ! Think they she is dead, Far as ye may, erect and equalise ;
Dead to the very name! Presumption fed And, what ye cannot reach by statute, draw
On empty air! That name will keep its hold Each from his fountain of self-sacrifice !

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SONNETS UPON THE PUNISHMENT OF DEATH.

IN SERIES.

1.

IV.

II.

He felt; but his parental bosom's lord SUGGESTED BY THE VIEW OF LANCASTER CASTLE

Was Duty,-Duty calmed his agony. (ON THE ROAD FROM THE SOUTH).

And some, we know, when they by wilful act This Spot—at once unfolding sight so fair

A single human life have wrongly taken, Of sea and land, with yon grey towers that still

Pass sentence on themselves, confess the fact, Rise up as if to lord it over air

And, to atone for it, with soul unshaken Might soothe in human breasts the sense of ill,

Kneel at the feet of Justice, and, for faith
Or charm it out of memory; yea, might fill

Broken with all mankind, solicit death.
The heart with joy and gratitude to God
For all his bounties upon man bestowed :
Why bears it then the name of “Weeping Hill”?
Thousands, as toward yon old Lancastrian Towers,

Is Death, when evil against good has fought

With such fell mastery that a man may dare A prison's crown, along this way they past For lingering durance or quick death with shame, By deeds the blackest purpose to lay bare ?

Is Death, for one to that condition brought, From this bare eminence thereon have cast Their first look-blinded as tears fell in showers

For him, or any one, the thing that ought

To be most dreaded ? Lawgivers, beware,
Shed on their chains; and hence that doleful name.

Lest, capital pains remitting till ye spare
The murderer, ye, by sanction to that thought

Seemingly given, debase the general mind;
TENDERLY do we feel by Nature's law

Tempt the vague will tried standards to disown, For worst offenders: though the heart will heave

Nor only palpable restraints unbind, With indignation, deeply moved we grieve,

But upon Honour's head disturb the crown, In after thought, for Him who stood in awe

Whose absolute rule permits not to withstand Neither of God nor man, and only saw,

In the weak love of life his least command.
Lost wretch, a horrible device enthroned
On proud temptations, till the victim groaned
Under the steel his hand had dared to draw.
But 0, restrain compassion, if its course,

Not to the object specially designed,
As oft befals, prevent or turn aside

Howe'er momentous in itself it be, Judgments and aims and acts whose higher source

Good to promote or curb depravity, Is sympathy with the unforewarned, who died

Is the wise Legislator's view confined. Blameless with them that shudderedo'er his grave, His Spirit, when most severe, is oft most kind; And all who from the law firm safety crave.

As all Authority in earth depends
On Love and Fear, their several powers he blends,

Copying with awe the one Paternal mind.
The Roman Consul doomed his sons to die Uncaught by processes in show humane,
Who had betrayed their country. The stern word He feels how far the act would derogate
Afforded (may it through all time afford)

From even the humblest functions of the State ; A theme for praise and admiration high.

If she, self-shorn of Majesty, ordain Upon the surface of humanity

That never more shall hang upon her breath He rested not; its depths his mind explored ; The last alternative of Life or Death.

III.

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