Page images
PDF
EPUB

WRITTEN IN JULY, 1834.

.

GREY, thou hast served, and well, the sacred Cause
That Hampden, Sydney died for. Thou hast stood,
Scorning all thought of Self, from first to last,
Among the foremost in that glorious field;
From first to last'; and, ardent as thou art,
Held on with equal step as best became
A lofty mind, loftiest when most assailed;
Never, though galled by many a barbed shaft,
By many a bitter taunt from friend and foe,
Swerving or shrinking. Happy in thy Youth,
Thy Youth the dawn of a long summer-day;
But in thy Age still happier; thine to earn
The gratitude of millions yet unborn;
Thine to conduct, through ways how difficult,
A mighty people in their march sublime

wherever I may be. But never, no never, will I place myself at the head of a faction."

Having met Lord Grey who was to succeed him in his office again and again under my roof, and knowing our intimacy, he meant that these words should be repeated to him; and so they were, word for word, on that very night. "To the last," said Lord Grey, "He fulfilled his promise."

Great thy recompense,

;

From Good to Better.
When in their eyes thou read'st what thou hast done
And may'st thou long enjoy it; may'st thou long
Preserve for them what still they claim as theirs,
That generous fervour and pure eloquence,
Thine from thy birth and Nature's noblest gifts,
To guard what They have gained !

WRITTEN AT MIDNIGHT.

SEPTEMBER 3, 1848.

IF Day reveals such wonders by her Light,
What by her Darkness cannot Night reveal ?
For at her bidding when She mounts her throne
The Heavens unfold, and from the depths of Space
Sun beyond Sun, as when called forth they came,
Each with the worlds that round him rolled rejoicing,

Sun beyond Sun in numbers numberless

Shine with a radiance that is all their own!

WRITTEN IN 1834.

WELL, when her day is over, be it said
That, though a speck on the terrestrial globe,
Found with long search and in a moment lost,
She made herself a name-a name to live
While science, eloquence, and song divine,
And wisdom, in self-government displayed,
And valour, such as only in the Free,
Shall
among men be honoured.

Every sea
Was covered with her sails; in every port
Her language spoken; and, where'er you went,
Exploring, to the east or to the west,
Even to the rising or the setting day,

Her arts and laws and institutes were there,
Moving with silent and majestic march,
Onward and onward, where no pathway was;
There her adventurous sons, like those of old,
Founding vast empires *-empires in their turn

* North America speaks for itself; and so indeed may we say of India when such a territory is ours in a region so remote; when a company of merchants, from such small beginnings, have established a dominion so absolute-a dominion over a people for ages civilized and cultivated, while we were yet in the woods.

R R

Destined to shine thro' many a distant age
With sun-like splendour.

Wondrous was her wealth,

The world itself her willing tributary;
Yet, to accomplish what her soul desired,
All was as nothing; and the mightiest kings,
Each in his hour of strife exhausted, fallen,
Drew strength from Her, their coffers from her own
Filled to o'erflowing. When her fleets of war
Had swept the main—had swept it and were gone,
Gone from the eyes and from the minds of men,
Their dreadful errands so entirely done-
Up rose her armies; on the land they stood,
Fearless, erect; and in an instant smote
Him with his legions.*

Yet ere long 'twas hers,
Great as her triumphs, to eclipse them all,
To do what none had done, none had conceived,
An act how glorious, making joy in Heaven;
When, such her prodigality, condemned
To toil and toil, alas, how hopelessly,
Herself in bonds, for ages unredeemed-
As with a god-like energy she sprung,
All else forgot, and, burdened as she was,
Ransomed the African.†

* Alluding to the battle of Waterloo. The illustrious Man who commanded there on our side, and who, in his anxiety to do justice to others, never fails to forget himself, said to me many years afterwards with some agitation, when relating an occurrence of that day, "It was a battle of giants! a battle of giants!" + Parliament had only to register the edict of the People.-CHANNING.

[graphic][subsumed][subsumed][merged small][subsumed]
« PreviousContinue »