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sometimes, too, I have changed the style, to accommodate it to English idiom,—perhaps to the detriment' of the original.
My version is certainly imperfect, but I console myself with the sentiment of a Roman poet:
« Si deficient vires, audacia ceste
By fair Shetucket's pebble-studded wave,
That flows meand'ring o'er the Pequod's grave:
Far, far remote from ocean's troubled flood,
Beneath the ancient shelter of the wood,
Where nature loves to sport her graceful plan,
In climing wild flowers and the form of man---
There chanc'd to meet, as suits the mimic lay,
Twomanly youths upon a summer's day.
Skenandoh this-Onanto that was nam'd :
And both, 'tis said, for manly sports were fam'd.
The first was tall of port and masculine
Strong as the oak, and graceful as the pine :
His giant shoulders towered far above;
Yet on his eyelids sat the God of love.
The next was milder in his gen’ral air,
But staunch and active as the flying hare.
In deeds of arms their glory was the same;
For both in war had gain'd a warrior's name.
Then on the banks, as o'er the cliffs they bend,
Thus spoke Skenandoh to his rival friend :
6 Know'st thou Onanto, that the fairest maid
Among the dancers, 'neath the hazel shade,
When autumn's moonlight smiles upon their gaze,
And thoughtful matrons husk the ripen'd maize ;-
The brigbit-hair'd Shennah, bold Skenandoh's pride,
Hath not a rival on Shetucket's side ?"
Onanto.—“ My brown Ovampah dances 'neath the trees
Light as the wild-roe or the waving breeze ;
And sure no damsel with her smiles so fair,
E'er had so graceful-so divine an air.
Yet not Shetucket my Owampah gave-
But gently flowing Willomantic's wave.
No rill that gushes through the melting snow,
And foams in silence o'er its bed below,
When April's sun dissolves December's chill,
And swollen torrents murmur down the hill,
Could e'er be named the Willomantic nigh;
Nor can your Shennah with Owampah vie."
Oneko. What voice is that, which echoes through the Thus spoke Onekostepping from the shade.
Sken." Hark, father, Hark!” Skenandoh quick replied ;
“ We sing our loves-do you for us decide !
A bow of ash, and carv'd with matchless skill
Hangs in my cabin, subject to your will,
If I shall fail to prove Skenandoh's pride,
The fairest damsel on Shetucket's side."
Onanto.-" This hatchet pipe, which late Alnomook made,
Plated with quills of porcupine inlaid,
Receive Oneko as my pledge to show
Owampah is the fairer of the two."
Oneko.--" Begin my children, said the ancient chief,
Since love in singing, finds its own relief.
Begin ; for old Oneko once was young :"
Thus spoke the chief, and thus Skenondoh sung.
Sken.--" As on the hills I sought the bounding deer,
Forth stepping from the woods, I paused to hear
If ought were passing ; when before me lay
Shetucket gleaming with the parting day ;
While in the distant vale beneath me spread,
The deer were grazing on the level mead.
It was an evening of the last of June,
And all was silent as the rising moon :
When from beneath the fragrant birch-tree's shade
A hand came bounding o'er the strawberry glade,
Of damsels lovelier than the white man's pride
They were the daughters of Shetucket's side.
No robe fair nature's dignity confind;
And their dark tresses floated on the wind.
In joyous games they tript it o'er the mead,
Where e'en the lily droop'd its vanquish'd head.
Such rounded grace--such loveliness of frame
Methought, Onanto, from the gods they came !*
But one there was, of magic grace and tall;
It was my Shennah-fairest of them all!"
n.--"When late the northern enemy by night)
Rous'd all our sleeping cabins to the fight :
When direful shrieks arose upon the gale,
And the shrill war-hoop echoed through the vale,
Then stood Owampah, calm without alarm,
Firm by my side, confiding in my arm;
And when our foes ignobly fled the plain,
Forc'd to retire to gloomy moors again,---
When victory rais'd the battle's thrilling song,
And hymns of praise were borne the breeze along,
Weary, I sought my native cabin free,
And there Owampah ran to welcome me. Roger Williams says, " when they (the Indians) saw one man excelling others in wisdom, valour, strength, &c. they would cry out he is a god.'
Hutehinson's Mussachusetts, Vol.
i. p. 47%.
The sun was rising o'er the fields of corn ;
My fair one's smile surpass'd the blushi ng morn!
Where, great Manittoo! where hast thou display'd
So brave, so gentle, and so fair a maid !"
Sken. “Our clan encamp’d, Acquiunk falls anigh,
As evening came from out the western sky.
It was the season when the budding trees
Put forth their foliage to the whisp'ring breeze:
Whilst all was noiseless, save the roaring flood,
And darkness spread his mantle o'er the wood.
Then on the waves the light canoes abound,
And sporting sturgeon nimbly play around.
The chiefs preceding, lead the num'rous throng ;
The boats in order stretch the stream along ;
Gleaming afar with torches quiv'ering light,
Like silent fire-flies on a summer's night.
Skenandoh's bark was foremost, and his fair
The treacherous net suspended in the air.
When leading forward o'er the smooth expanse,
Her balance losing with the boat's advance :
Down from the bark she sank the wave beneath;
Methought her hastning to the land of death :
But while confusion shriek'd with dire alarms,
Skenandoh diving caught her in his arms;
Then tow'rd the shore, an hundred youth among,
He swam, while Shennah on his shoulders hung !
I swear, Onanto, such ennobling pride
Immortal spirits o'er the mountains wide
Have never known, as thrill'd Skenandoh brave,
In rescuing beauty from a wat’ry grave.
The rose is fairer when the show'r is gone ;
The lily blooming o'er its watry throne :
Just so my Shennah when reviv'd on shore
Seem'd ten-fold fairer than she was before."
Onanto. .--.“ Our warriors rested from the hunter's toil,
And many an antler crown'd the day with spoil :
Then joy ascends the snow-clad hills along,
And shouts of praise the festive fires prolong.
The time was evening, and the northern bear
Ascended high his circle in the air.
The piercing whirlwind hast ning o'er the main
Drifted the snow, and sighed along the plain ;
While o'er the hills the gentle moon-beams play'd,
And ice-clad elms the rainbow's hues display'd.
Such was the hour when my Owampah came,
Fairest amongst the damsels known to fame ;
Leading the choicest daughters of our clan,
Each one the mistress, and the pride of man.
In beauty, grace, in smiles, the damsels vie
The bounding dancers round the cabin fly.
But as the star of winter shines at even
In matchless brilliance, 'midst the host of heaven;
Or as the elm sublimely tow'rs above,
In grace and beauty, 'midst the humble grove,
Just so Owampah, as she dances by,
Pierc'd the stern heart, and drew each warrior's eye.
A youth there was---(Ahauton was his name,)
Caught by her charms---confess'd bis ardent flame :
But, (true affection never is beguil'd)
Owampah blushing, look'd at me and smil'd.”
Oneko.---“ My children pause! the hour no more prolong;
These woods---this stream bear witness of your song :
Each hath deserved the prize, the task be mine
The victor's plume upon your brows to twine.
See yonder sun declines behind the hill,
And soon the stars come twinkling on the rill;
Each to his mistress fair retire ; and when
The moon has risen o'er the hills again,
Come to a banquet where our nation's pride,
Shall meet Skenandoh's and Onanto's bride."
Thus spoke Oneko, and the youths obey'd :
For wisdom seem'd upon his front display'd.
“ Alas, poor Yorick!-a fellow of infinite jest, of most excellent fancy.. “Now get you to my lady's chamber, and tell her, let her paint an inchi thick, to this favour she must come.”
Job Cook is no more; and, what is still worse, Job Cook's nephew has, in conjunction with faithful old Toby, followed his loving uncle to that silent mansion, where pills and powders are no more necessary.
He has at last fallen a victim to the too exquisite sensibility of his feelings.
From the time of the departure of his master, Dr. Langlancet, “ to another and a betterworld,” he was scarcely ever seen to smile; in another number of this journal, he has, with his own masterly pen, exhibited the melancholy with which the demise of his master's old antagonist, Dr. Polypus, affected him; and I myself witnessed the painful assiduity with which he watched over, soothed, and softened, the last hours of poor Harry Slender. His friends hoped that time and his professional avocations, would gradually dissipate the melancholy which seemed to forever fixed upon his pale brow. The kind attentions of all around him visibly had their effect: he would sometimes mingle in society, and even assume a cheerful air. But, when there was every reason to hope that his cure was certain, the death of his uncle Job Cook, his chief companion, friend, counsellor and patient, overwhelmed him
with grief: he withdrew himself from all society :-no entreaties could induce bim to leave his room, and to seek relief from his woes in the pleasures of the town, or in the retirement of the country. No person, save black Toby, was willingly admitted to his solitary chamber, where, with Toby's assistance, he is supposed to have amused his last hours, by composing the account of his uncle which appeared in the last Atlantic.
Shortly after the publication of that article, a message was left at my office, requesting me to call immediately on Job Cook's nephew. I hastened to the house, and was instantly conducted to bis bed-side. The hand of death was upon
him. Those eyes, which once sparkled with the fire of genius, were now sunk deep in their sockets, and emitted an unearthly and glassy gaze. He motioned to me to sit down by his bed-side, and, after a pause of a few moments, which my feelings would not permit me to interrupt, he spoke as follows:-“ My friend, I feel that I am fast sinking into an early grave, and I only regret it on one account. You know that I have hitherto been a large contributor to the Atlantic Magazine ; but I now feel that • Job Cook’ is the last of my living productions which will adorn its pages. In the farthest corner of my medicine chest, you will find my posthumous works. To you I bequeath them. If you find any thing worthy of the pages of the Atlantic, let it appear, as soon as you have time to arrange my papers." I promised the most religious attention to his directions ; but, finding that he had exhausted himself by the effort he had made in speaking, I entreated him to endeavour to compose himself to rest. He said he would follow my advice, and requested me, in the mean time, to visit poor old Toby's garret-room, and administer some comfort to that faithful old servant, who was now confined to his bed by age and sickness. I left him, promising to return in an hour, and mounted to Toby's attic.
Poor Toby was evidently near death's door. The vibrations of his pulse were almost imperceptible. To every question put to him, he only answered by a shake of his head. On inquiring into the immediate cause of Toby's illness, I was informed that some one of the family had read the account of Job Cook's last expedition and death to him; from which time, the poor old fellow had never held up his head. He had only remarked, that“ it was bad enough to lose coor old master Job, but that he had never known how bad it svas, until he had heard young master's account of it read by old Sukey." I now perceived that Toby's aspect was rapidly clpanging. His last moment had arrived. He fixed his rayless ey es upon me,
shook his head three times, and moved no more.