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KNAVE OF HEARTS.
I gave, 'twas but the other day,
"Tis love such tricks impart;
I want them long enough d'ye see, To cover all the calf.
Why, Sir, said Last, with stifled laugh,
EPIGRAM FOR THE LADIES "Wit is a feather"-Pope has said,
And females never doubt it: So those who've least within the head, Display the most without it.
LINES WRITTEN ON A PANE OF GLASS AT AN INN. Dust is lighter than a feather, The wind much lighter is than either; But alas! frail womankind Is far much lighter than the wind.
BENEATH THESE IN ANOTHER
Friend you mistake the matter quite, How can you say that woman's light? Poor Comus swears, throughout his life, His heaviest plague has been a wife.
LINES WRITTEN OVER A BARBER'S SHOP.
Wigs good I make, and takes my price,
EPITAPH ON A FAITHFUL WIFE. Beneath this stone-her ashes rest Whose memory fills my aching breast; She sleeps unconscious of the tear That tells the tale of sorrow here: But still the hope allays my pain That we may live and love again→→→ Love with a pure seraphic fire That never, never shall expire.
ON THE ÆOLIAN HARP.
What viewless forms the Æolian organ sweep ?-Campbell.
TO THE EDITOR.
Scarcely can there be a stronger proof of the kindness of Providence than the wonderful provision which is made for the enjoyment of the human race. This provision is in some instances complete without the intervention of human ingenuity, and in others some degree of art is necessary. Of the former description may be mentioned sublime and romantic scenery, and the changes of seasons with their respective accompaniments, as the beauty of foliage, and the music of birds. All these are calculated to awaken pleasurable emotions, and may be ranked among the sources of human enjoyment. Man was not called into existence to gaze in listless indifference on the wonders with which he is surrounded. He was formed to explore and admire the works of God; and in these employments he finds ample means of promoting his happiness. He who can feel the vivifying influence of Spring without experiencing a sensible delight who can listen to the music of the groves without feeling his mind soothed, and disposed to devotionwho can cast a vacant and uninterested gaze over the endless variety of hill and dale, of mountain and valley, with which this earth is diversified-and who can behold the yellow tints of Autumn without blessing Him who crowns the year with plenty, may justly be charged with sullenness against nature, as
On the Eolian Harp.
Milton expresses it, and certainly cannot be said to appreciate the advantages of his present situation. In these cases he has only to open his eyes or his ears to receive the gratification which unassisted Nature has provided for him.
In other instances some degree of art is requisite to render the elements subservient to the promotion of our enjoyment. As those instances in which the least art is required, are the most pleasing, I will confine my remarks at present to one, not less distinguished for its simplicity, than for the circumstance of its converting the most boisterous of the elements into the means of filling the mind with the most pleasing emotions—I allude to the Æolian Harp; an instrument which I believe is but little known in this part of the country. Subjoined is a description of its mechanism, which an artist will readily comprehend. When the Eolian Harp is properly tuned, the strains are so simple and so sweet, and above all, the transitions are so exquisite that one is apt to be deceived into the belief that some invisible being presides over it, and guides its melodies.
"The Eolian Harp is composed of a rectangular box, made of very thin dale, of the same length as the width of the window in which it is to be placed, and about five inches deep and six inches broad. Over the upper surface of this box, which is pierced with sounding holes, like the sounding board of a fiddle, are stretched several catgut, wire, or silk strings with a slight degree of tension. When these strings are in unison, and the instrument exposed in the window to the action of a gentle breeze, they will emit the most agreable combination of wild and melting sounds, changing from one harmonic of the string to another, according to the varying impulse ofthe wind, and its unequal action on the different parts of the vibrating string." The effects of this wild and irregular music are beautifully described by Thomson in the following verses:
"Those tender notes, how kindly they upbraid!
With what soft wo they thrill the lover's heart!
Who died of love, these sweet complainings part.
But hark! that strain was of a graver tone;
On the deep strings his hand some hermit throws;
In the drear waste, and wept his people's woes.
On the Eolian Harp.
Such was the song which Zion's children sung,
Angelic harps, to sooth a dying saint."
I would therefore recommend this instrument to your readers as equally calculated to charm the adept in music, and the simple child of nature who knows of no higher strains than Stroudwater, and Jenny's Bawbee. The expense is so trifling, that few need be deterred on that account; and I can assure them that they will find the Æolian Harp a source of the most harmless and pleasing entertainment. And although many of your readers cannot afford a piano or a harpsichord, every cottage may boast of its Æolian Harp: and many of our peasants who never heard of the old or new system, or of the controversy between Logier and De Monti, may convert the air which is diffused around them into the means of supplying those deficiencies.
Before concluding I beg leave to mention one advantage which this natural music possesses over artificial, namely, its endless variety. When we have been a short time in the company of any performer, we become acquainted with all his airs, and the first bar suggests the whole piece; and however we may admire his execution, to use a cant term, we cease to be charmed with novelty. Here on the contrary, all is artless, all is irregular, and every new breeze produces a new strain, which excites a corresponding sensation in the mind: and if we submit ourselves entirely to the guidance of this ever-varying melody, we shall in all probability, in a very short time, be hurried through all the range of human feeling, from the deepest melancholy to the highest pitch of enthusiasm.
In addition to the quotation already given from Thomson, I make no apology for introducing the following stanzas from the Castle of Indolence, both because they happily illustrate the subject of this paper, and because the perusal of them may induce some of your readers to turn to the chaste and classic pages of a poem too little read by the admirers of the Seasons, The poet is enumerating the properties of the Castle, and prom ceeds thus:
"Each sound, too, here to languishment inclin'd,
At distance rising oft, by small degrees,
Letter from Matthew Kenspeckle.
It hung, and breath'd such soul-dissolving airs
The listening heart forgot all duties and all cares,
A certain music never known before,
Here lull'd the pensive melancholy mind;
But sidelong to the gently waving wind,
Beyond each mortal touch the most refin'd,
Whence, with just cause, the harp of Æolus it hight,*
Ah me! what hand can touch the string so fine?
Such sweet, such sad, such solemn airs divine,
Now rising love they fann'd; now pleasing dole
I am, Sir, yours sincerely,
29th March, 1819.
From M. Kenspeckle to his Brother in Kilmarnock,
Glasgow, 6th April, 1819.
MY DEAR BROTHER,
I have hitherto endeavoured to amuse you by such descrip tions of remarkable things and personages about Glasgow that excite the notice of a stranger, and would find no difficulty in collecting materials for a series of critical remarks, were not the time approaching when a period must be put to my academic labours, and a conclusion to my office as censor. I hasten ther to close my communications by attempting a description of the Ladies of Glasgow. On such a subject a young man might be excused if he indulged in a strain of panegyric, and instead of
* Is called.