Page images
PDF
EPUB

MISCELLANEOUS POEMS.

[ocr errors]

MISCELLANEOUS POEMS.

ODE TO SUPERSTITION.1

HENCE to the realms of Night, dire Demon, hence !

Thy chain of adamant can bind

That little world, the human mind,
And sink its noblest powers to impotence.

Wake the lion's loudest roar,
Clot his shaggy mane with gore,
With flashing fury bid his eye-balls shine;
Meek is his savage, sullen soul, to thine !
Thy touch, thy deadening touch, has steeled the breast,
Whence, through her April-shower, soft Pity smiled;
Has closed the heart each godlike virtue blessed,
To all the silent pleadings of his child.”

At thy command he plants the dagger deep,
At thy command exults, though Nature bids him weep!

3

When, with a frown that froze the peopled earth,

Thou dartedst thy huge head from high,

Night waved her banners o'er the sky,
And, brooding, gave her shapeless shadows birth.

Rocking on the billowy air,

Ha! what withering phantoms glare ! As blows the blast with many a sudden swell, At each dead pause, what shrill-toned voices yell The sheeted spectre, rising from the tomb, Points to the murderer's stab, and shudders by; In every grove is felt a heavier gloom, That veils its genius from the vulgar eye:

The spirit of the water rides the storm, And, through the mist, reveals the terrors of his form.

I. 3.

O'er solid seas, where Winter reigns,

And holds each mountain-wave in chains,
The fur-clad savage, ere he guides his deer

By glistering star-light through the snow,
Breathes softly in her wondering ear

Each potent spell thou bad’st him know.
By thee inspired, on India's sands,
Full in the sun the Brahmin stands;

And, while the panting tigress hies
To quench her fever in the stream,

His spirit laughs in agonies,
Smit by the scorchings of the noontide beam.

Mark who mounts the sacred pyre,

Blooming in her bridal vest :
She hurls the torch! she fans the fire !

To die is to be blest:
She clasps her lord to part no more,
And, sighing, sinks! but sinks to soar.
O'ershadowing Scotia's desert coast,
The Sisters sail in dusky state,

[ocr errors]

And, wrapt in clouds, in tempests tost,

Weave the airy web of Fate; While the lone shepherd, near the shipless main, Sees o'er her hills advance the long-drawn funeral train.

II. 1.

Thou spak'st, and, lo! a new creation glowed.

Each unhewn mass of living stone

Was clad in horrors not its own,
And at its base the trembling nations bowed.

Giant Error, darkly grand,

Grasped the globe with iron hand. Circled with seats of bliss, the Lord of Light Saw prostrate worlds adore his golden height. The statue, waking with immortal powers,' Springs from its parent earth, and shakes the spheres ; The indignant pyramid sublimely towers, And braves the efforts of a host of years.

Sweet Music breathes her soul into the wind; And bright-eyed Painting stamps the image of the mind.

II. 2.

Round the rude ark old Egypt's sorcerers rise !

A timbrelled anthem gwells the gale,

And bids the God of Thunders hail ;* With lowings loud the captive god replies.

Clouds of incense woo thy smile,

Scaly monarch of the Nile ! '
But, ah! what myriads claim the bended knee ! 20
Go, count the busy drops that swell the sea.
Proud land! what eye can trace thy mystic lore,
Locked up in characters as dark as night ? u

« PreviousContinue »