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They rise in joy, the starry myriads burning!
The shepherd greets them on his mountains free,

And from the silvery sea
To them the sailor's wakeful eye is turning ;

-Unchanged they rise, they have not mourned for thee !
Could'st thou be shaken from thy radiant place,
Even as a dew-drop from the myrtle spray,

Swept by the wind away ?
Wert thou not peopled by some glorious race,

And was there powers to smite them with decay?
Why, who shall talk of Thrones, of Sceptres riven ?
- It is too sad to think on what we are,

When from its height afar,
A world sinks thus! and yon majestic Heaven

Shines not the less for that one vanished star! This and the following poem exhibit Mrs. Hemans' keen perception of the picturesque, whether in thought, feeling, or incident. They also display her great power of illustrating and varying a single idea— drawing all things to one.'—In her best pieces, it is very interesting to watch the progress of the thought or feeling in all its stages; from the germ in the first verse, to the climax in the last.

BRING flowers, young flowers, for the festal board,
To wreathe the cup ere the wine is poured :
Bring flowers ! they are springing in wood and vale,
Their breath floats out on the southern gale,
And the touch of the sunbeam hath waked the rose
To deck the hall where the bright wine flows.
Bring flowers to strew in the Conqueror's path,-
He hath shaken thrones with his stormy wrath !
He comes with the spoils of nations back,
The vines lie crushed in his chariot track,
The turf looks red where he won the day,
Bring flowers to die in the Conqueror's way!
Bring flowers to the Captive's lonely cell,
They have tales of the joyous woods to tell ;
Of the free blue streams, and the glowing sky,
And the bright world shut from his languid eye;
They will bear him a thought of the sunny hours,
And a dream of his youth.-Bring him flowers, wild flowers.
Bring flowers, fresh flowers, for the Bride to wear!
They were born to blush in her shining hair.
She is leaving the home of her childish mirth,
She hath bid farewell to her father's hearth,
Her place is now by another's side,-
Bring flowers for the locks of the fair young Bride!
Bring flowers, pale flowers, o'er the bier to shed,
A crown for the brow of the early dead !
For this through its leaves hath the white-rose burst,
For this in the woods was the violet nurst.
Though they smile in vain for what once was ours,
They are Love's last gift, Bring flowers, pale flowers !
Bring flowers to the shrine where we kneel in prayer,
They are Nature's offering, their place is there?
They speak of hope to the fainting heart,
With a voice of promise they come and part,
They sleep in dust through the wintry hours,
They break forth in glory-Bring flowers, bright flowers !

• The Siege of Valencia' abounds with admirable, but it contains few quotable passages. As a dramatic poem the interest of parts must in great measure depend on their reference to the whole, and to detach a number of beauties from their context, is as unfair and unsatisfactory, as to cut the flowers from a piece of embroidery, or the figures out of a picture. There is however one passage complete in itself, which we shall give. It occurs in the scene where Gonzalez, the governor, announces to his wife that their two sons can only be rescued from impending death by an immediate surrender of the city. The whole scene is wrought up with extraordinary power; and the way in which Elmina pleads with her husband, forgetful of every character but the mother-every consideration but her • pretty little ones,'--pierces to the heart.


LOVE! love ! There are soft smiles and gentle words,
And there are faces, skilful to put on
The look we trust in-and 'tis mockery all!
A faithless mist, a desert-vapour, wearing
The brightness of clear waters, thus to cheat
The thirst that semblance kindled !_There is none,
In all this cold and hollow world-no fount
Of deep, strong, deathless love, save that within
A mother's heart. It is but pride, wherewith
To his fair son the father's eye doth turn,
Watching his growth. Ay, on the boy he looks,
The bright glad creature springing in his path,
But as the heir of his great name, the young,
And stately tree, whose rising strength ere long
Shall bear his trophies well. And this is love!
This is man's love !- What marvel ?-- You ne'er made
Your breast the pillow of his infancy,
While to the fulness of your heart's glad heavings
His fair cheek rose and fell; and his bright hair
Waved softly to your breath!-You ne'er kept watch
Beside him, till the last pale star had set,
And morn all dazzling as in triumph, broke
On your dim weary eye; not your's the face
Which early faded through fond care for him,
Hung o'er his sleep, and, duly as Heaven's light,
Was there to greet his wakening. You ne'er smoothed
His couch, ne'er sung him to his rosy rest,
Caught his least whisper, when his voice from your's
Had learned soft utterance; pressed your lip to his,
When fever parched it; hushed his wayward cries,
With patient, vigilant, never-wearied love!
No! these are woman's tasks ! In these her youth
And bloom of cheek, and buoyancy of heart,
Steal from her all unmarked !

Could any but a woman, a true woman, have written the last passage ? And is not one such appeal to the deepest, because the holiest feelings of our nature, feelings founded, sanctioned, and upheld by God himself, far better worth, than the ravings of love-lorn maidens, and desperate cavaliers ? Passion is a poetical cant word of the day; it is something worse unfortunately-a kind of literary demon, upon whose shrine good sense, good feeling, and good taste, are to be recklessly immolated. Nothing is supposed to be said strongly that is said simply ; every line must produce

an effect;' every word must ‘tell ;'-in fact, what Goldsmith said truly in one sense, is now equally true in another

Who peppers the highest is surest to please. The human heart is to be treated like Lord Peter's coat in the Tale of a Tub—authors need “mind nothing, so they do but tear away.' Powerful is another cant word, which palms off every delineation that is monstrous and absurd. Language is powerful, when epithets succeed each other as fast and heavily as the strokes of a blacksmith's hammer ;-ideas are powerful, when they cannot be defined; but, like Ossian's ghosts, reveal themselves in mist and shadow ;-and characters and incidents are powerful, when they make us wonder what is to follow after! Those who catered for the Nursery in the olden times, had very correct notions on these points. Jack the Giant Killer is truly powerful! Blue Beard is fraught with passion! Mrs. Hemans' admirable taste completely guards her from these, the besetting sins of our lighter literature ; and yet, when she unreservedly surrenders the pencil to the guidance of her own heart and fancy, her pictures are as beautiful for their fervid colouring, as they invariably are for their correct and vigorous outlines. But it is a remarkable circumstance, that Mrs Hemans has so rarely, that we might also say, has never, made personal feeling the subject of her poetry. This unusual reserve has proceeded from delicacy of taste, but it has, we think, diminished the interest of her works, because the reader could never, so to speak, individualize the poet.

Young, and mediocre authors, generally injure themselves by a contrary line of conduct; they absolutely wear out a reader's patience by the continual recurrence of Stanzas to i' and 'Stanzas on - But with an author of acknowledged genius, and established fame,' the case is different. We are not satisfied with seeing them in character, we wish to be admitted behind the scenes ;-having bowed before them as enchanters, we long to associate with them as friends-to hear them with their own voices tell us of their own feelings, or at least their opinions on subjects common to all. It is this, even more than their beauty, which renders the private sonnets of Milton and Shakespeare so intensely interesting ; it was well-managed egotism that first made Lord Byron the idol of the public; nay, we do not scruple to assert, that the most generally popular productions of our modern poets are those which have had a reference to private feeling. It is Wordsworth's · She was a Phantom'-and Coleridge's 'Genevieve'-and Scott's • Introductions to Marmion'-and Burns' To Mary in Heaven'-and Leigh Hunt's · Lines to his Child'-and Shelley's “Stanzas written in the Bay of Naples'-and a host of other pieces we could name, that have excited the deepest interest. It is a high, but it is also a deserved compliment, that we mean to pay Mrs. Hemans, when we express a wish that she would oftener be to us an unveiled prophetess; and without the intervention of history, ancient or modern-classical or romantic-impart to us her own impressions on subjects that come more immediately home to the human heart, and are more intimately connected with the course of human life. In The Sceptic' she has done this in a most interesting as well as masterly style. We shall indulge in a pretty long extract from this poem.

THE MANIAC. Oh what is Nature's strength ? the vacant eye ; My mind deserted, hath a dread reply! The wild delirious laughter of despair, The mirth of frenzy-seek an answer there! Turn not away, though pity's cheek grow pale, Close not thine ear against their awful tale, They tell thee, Reason, wandering from the ray Of Faith, the blazing pillar of her way, In the mid-darkness of the stormy wave, Forsook the struggling soul she could not save ! Weep not, sad moralist, o'er desert plains, Strewed with the wrecks of grandeur-mouldering fanesArches of triumph, long with weeds o'er grown, And regal cities, now the serpent's own: Earth has more awful ruins-one lost mind, Whose star is quenched, hath lessons for mankind, Of deeper import than each prostrate dome, Mingling its marble with the dust of Rome. But who with eye unshrinking shall explore That waste, illumed by Reason's beam no more ? Who pierce the deep, mysterious clouds that roll Around the shattered temple of the soul, Curtain'd with midnight ? - low its columns lie, And dark the chambers of its

imagery, Sunk are its idols now and God alone May rear the fabric, by their fall o'erthrown ! Yet, from its inmost shrine, by storms laid bare, Is heard an oracle that cries Beware! Child of the dust! but ransomed of the skies ! One breath of Heaven—and thus thy glory dies ! Haste, ere the hour of doom, draw nigh to Him Who dwells above between the Cherubim !” Spirit dethroned ! and checked in mid career, Son of the morning! exiled from thy sphere, Tell us thy tale ! - Perchance thy race was run With Science, in the chariot of the sun; Free as the winds, the paths of space to sweep, Traverse the untrodden kingdoms of the deep, And search the laws that Nature's springs control, There tracing all-save Him who guides the whole ! Or did thy power pervade the living lyre, Till its deep chords became instinct with fire; Silenced all meaner notes, and swelled on high, Full and alone, their mighty harmony, While woke each passion from its cell profound, And nations started at the electric sound ? Lord of the Ascendant! what avails it now, Tho' bright the laurels wav'd upon thy brow ? What, tho' thy name, thro' distant empires heard, Bade the heart bound, as doth a battle-word ? Was it for this thy still unwearied eye, Kept vigil with the watch-fires of the sky, To make the secrets of all ages thine, And commune with majestic thoughts that shine O'er Time's long shadowy path-way?-Hath thy mind Severed its lone dominion from mankind, For this to woo their homage ?—Thou hast sought All, save the wisdom with salvation fraught, Won every wreath—but that which will not die, Nor aught neglected-save eternity !

Poetry like this steals over the heart with a salutary influence; reviving those holy impressions which are but too apt to droop beneath the daily influence of earthly cares and vanities. The poet who refines the taste, exalts the imagination, and addresses the better feelings of our nature, does much, and deserves alike the praise and gratitude of his fellow-men; but the poet who seeks to unite religious truth with intellectual beauty-what is sacred with what is graceful—who hangs his chaplet on the cross, and lays that living lyre, the heart, upon the single altar worthy such an offering--he only can be esteemed great. It is very pleasant to turn over the pages of modern poetry; and notwithstanding the frequent recurrence of what is dark and degrading in subject and sentiment, to find these verdant spots whereon the heart may safely rest. We have many poems of a decidedly immoral character—too many more that are merely negative; that are entirely unconnected with utility; and that, like the morning clouds, and the early dew, please for a moment, and pass away for ever. But there are also strains of a higher mood; poets, who like the birds that ministered to the prophet in the wilderness, bring us food from heaven: Blessings be with them

and eternal praise ! We have, we hope, done justice to the high literary excellence of Mrs. Hemans' writings; but we cannot bring these remarks to a close without again adverting to their highly moral, and as our last extract will evidence, often more than moral tendency. For their picturesque delineations, vivid imagery, exquisite taste, and absolutely superb fancy, we assign her works an honourable niche in our libraries; but it is for better qualities still, that we enshrine them in our regards, and commend them to our youth. It is for her sedulous inculcation of noble sentiment, and generous feeling ; her respect for what is sacred in principle; her eulogy of every thing lovely in conduct and character; her repugnance to delineations not merely of unhallowed, but even of excessive emotion; her invariable regard to the character of the woman, evidenced in all that she has done as an author; it is for these things, that we honour Mrs. Hemans as we do not many others; for these that

her due
Is praise, heroic praise, and true.



An Epic Poem should be sweet as Manna,
But this, by Jove, is Ipecacuanha !



The case is common, and the wonder none,
A woman travailed, and brought forth a son !

You've got into hot water you say, and I hope
If you have, you'll make use of a towel and soap !

* This little squib is ascribed to the pen of Mr. Thomas Campbell, the poet. This is, we believe, its first appearance in print. -Ed. Lit. Mag.


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