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i The one she stroked my milk-white chin, VERSES TO THE MEMORY OF A VERY In my ear one softly sings :
PROMISING CHILD. “ Rise up, rise up, thou Younker brave,
And trip in our moonlight rings ! Written after witnessing her last Moments. Rise up, rise up, thou Younker brave,
1. And trip in the moonlight ring,
I CANNOT weep, yet I can feel And my Maidens each one of the silvery The pangs that rend a parent's breast; tone
But ah! what sighis or tears can heal Shall their loveliest ditties sing.”
Thy griefs, and wake the slumberer's rest ?
What art thou, spirit undefined,
That passest with Man's breath away!
That givest him feeling, sense, and mind, It own'd the magic strain.
And leavest him cold, unconscious clay! The noisy stream it flowed no more,
III. But stands with feeling listening ;
A moment gone 1 looked, and lo * The sporting fishes lave in the silvery wave,
Sensation throbbed through all this frame; And friend by foe is glistening.
Those beamless eyes were raised in woe ;
That bosom's motion went and came. The fishes all in the silvery wave,
IV. **11Now up, now down, are springing ; The next a nameless change was wrought, The small birds are seen in the coppice green Death nipt in twain Life's brittle thread, To sport their songs while singing. And in a twinkling, feeling, thought,
Sensation, motion--all were fled ! “ Listen, O listen, thou Younker brave !
Those lips will never more repeat
The welcome lesson conned with care;
Or breathe at even, in accents sweet, “We'll teach thee how the savage bear
To Heaven the well-remembered prayer !
To ply the mimic task again,
Well pleased, forgetting mirth and play And here they danced, and there they A Mother's promised gift to gain ! danced,
That heart is still no more to move :
Or dimple in the smile of love, “ Listen, O listen, thou Younker proud !
That speaks a parent's welcome home. " "If still thy speech denying,
VIII. Our vengeance shall wake, and nought shall And thou, with years and sufferings bowed, it slake
Say, dost thou least this loss deplore? But thy blood this green turf dyeing!" Ah ! though thy wailings are not loud,
I fear thy secret grief is more.
Youth's griefs are loud, but are not long, Else left were I still on the Fairy-hill
But thine with life itself will last, :29. With the Fairy Fair to won.
And Age will feel each sorrow strong And hence I warn each goodly youth,
When all its morning joys are past." Who strolls by yon streamlet fair,
And leave the copy all thou art ;
And sure the wide world does not hold
The pangs that rend a Parent's breast; view of comparing the character of the Ger.
But ah! what sorrowing can unseal man Fairy legends with that of our own;
Those eyes, and wake the Slumberer's and also on account of a "remarkable coin.
J. M.DIARMID. cidence in the effects of this Fairy's song, and thiose so beautifully described in Mo Hogg's Witch of Fife, as produced by the • These lines appeared anonymously a magic melody on the green Lomond. "The few weeks ago in a Scotch Weekly Paper; superiority of our countryman, in this parti. but we have discovered the Author, and be cular, over Herder, is very striking. lieve he will not be displeased to see them
3. P. 1813. reprinted with his name in this Miscellany. VOL. I.
REVIEW OF NEW PUBLICATIONS.
Poetical Epistles and Specimens of whatever source it flows --whether
Translation. 12mo, Edinburgh, from the bright and conspicuous shrine Constable & Co., 1813.
to which all eyes are turned, or from
the obscure and shaded fountain which This elegant little volume is mani- flows but to cheer its own solitude. festly the production of a man of eru In an age when great poets exist, dition, taste, sensibility, and genius. It there must likewise exist many minds abounds with imagery ;-it is every; of the true poetical character, but with where animated with easy, natural, and humbler faculties and lower aspiralively feeling; --and it exbibits numer tions. From their writings, much, ous examples of extreme felicity in perhaps, may be learned, which is not language and versification, perfectly to be found in strains of higher mood, decisive of the accomplished scholar. and which bears more directly on the Its very faults and defects (and they business and duties of life. They are both multifarious and glaring), in- stand more nearly on a level with their stead of offending, really impart to our readers ; their thoughts and sympaminds a kind of confused pleasure, a
thies are more kindred and congenial rising, we conceive, from that kindlin with the ordinary thoughts and symness and good-will towards the anony- pathies of man; their souls more closemous Poet, which his happy, careless, ly inhabit, and more carefully traverse, and indolent nature, irresistibly excites this our every-day world ; and the --so that we come at last to look on sphere of their power is in the halhis occasional weaknesses and vagaries lowed circle of domestic happiness. as characteristic traits peculiar to him. Let no one, therefore, deceive himself self, and wliich endear him to us al- into a belief, that he does in his heart most as much as his many high and rationally love poetry, unless he is avaluable qualities.
bove being chained by the fascination We never read poems which so clear- of great names, and delighted to meet ly bear the marks of having been writ- with imagery, sentiment, and pathos, ten purely for the gratification of the
even in a small, obscure, and anonyauthor, without any intention, or even mous volume like this, which, eviprospect, of publication. They contain dently written by a man of genius and just such thoughts, feelings, and re- virtue, is given to the public from no membrances, as are likely to arise in desire of fame, but from the wish to the heart and mind of an amiable and impart to others the calm, unostenenlightened man, when indulging poe- tatious, and enlightened happiness tical reveries in his solitary study or which, during the composition of it, evening-walk; and thus, though they he himself must have enjoyed, in are often vaguely, obscurely, and indé- thoughtful and philosophical retirefinitely, conceived and expressed, there ment. is always about them a warmth, a sin The volume consists partly of origicerity, and earnestness, which force us nal compositions, and partly of transto overlook every fault in composition, lations from Euripides, Anacreon, and while the happier passages are dis- Tyrtæus ;—from Horace, from Dante, tinguished by an ease, freedom, ele- from Petrarch, and from Klopstock. gance and grace, truly delightful, and The original compositions are in the not to be surpassed in the very best form of Poetical Epistles. specimens of our opuscular poetry, The first of these Epistles seems to
Yet with all this merit, we believe have been written as far back as the the volume has attracted little atten- year 1799, when it appears, from se* tion. In the present day, unless a veral passages, the author was a mempoet stand in the first class, he has but ber of the University of Oxford. The little chance of being read at all; and first part of it contains a description the ignorant are now as fastidious as of a pedestrian tour through the Highthe learned. But this is certain, that lands of Scotland, performed by the every true lover of poetry will be hap- author, in company with the friend to py. to listen to the sacred song, from whom the Epistle is addressed;" a
transition is made, from a well-merit Through cells once vocal to the monk ed compliment to Mrs Grant, the ce
and nun," lebrated writer of the Letters from the O'er royal tombs in grass and weeds o'errun, Mountains, to the many persons of Through pillar'd aisles whose sculptur'd
cornice bore learning and genius whom Scotland has in modern times produced ; an at
The fragment tales of legendary lore, tempt is made to characterize their Till cross and holy image swam in shade.
Our lingering feet in musing silence stray'd, peculiar endowments; and the Epistle No sound the solemn stillness broke, except concludes with some personal feelings The passing gale, or charnel vaults that wept; and hopes, and fears, and aspirations, Or, from the ocean's dim-discover'd foam, of the author, in a supposed colloquy The dash of oars thất bore the fisher home.” between himself and the enlightened The Poet describes equally well the friend with whom he holds his poeti- beautiful scenery of Balachuilish+the cal correspondence.
savage solitude of Glencoe--the quiet The principal merit of this the very great skill with which the like and breathless slumber of Loch
serenity of Glenroy-and the dreamcharacter of epistolary composition Laggan. We quote the description is preserved. Though abounding in of the last scene, for the sake of the description, the writer always bears in elegant tribute to the genius of a most mind, that the person to whom he is
LBwriting is as familiar with the objects described as he himself is; and, there “ How deep thy still retreat, o Laggan fore, he rather recalls the remem
lake! brance of them by short and vivid
Who yet will hide me in thy birchen brake ? touches than by any protracted and
Where thy old moss-grown trees are rotting
down laborious delineation. It is an admir
Across the path, as man were never known; able specimen of a poetical journal.
Where thy clear waters sleep upon the shore, The following passage has, we As if they ne'er had felt the ruffling oar ; think, very extraordinary merit—it is Where on thy woody promontory's height, simple, clear, and descriptive.
The evening vapours wreathe their folds of
light, “ The waves were crimson'd by the setting While from their driving fleece the torrents,
flashing, Retiring Staffa met the ruddy rays, Down the rude rocks in long cascade are And veil'd her columns in a rosy haze;
dashing ! Dark isles, around the skirts of ocean spread, O you would think on that lone hill that none Seem'd clouds that hover'd o'er its tossing Had e'er reclin'd, save the broad setting sun! bed.
Yet here the musing steps of genius roam By craggy shores and cliffs of dusky hue,
From neighbouring Paradise of love and Scatter'd in open sea, our galley flew ;
home : Fearful! had storms these rocky mountains, That gifted Spirit whose descriptions, warm, beat,
Paint Highland manners, every mountainBut now the laden waves scarce lick'd their
By the green tomhans of this fairy wood, And each brown shadow on the waters cast, Nurses her glowing thought in solitude !" Frown'd smilingly upon us as we passed. From rock to rock the galley smoothly slid,
The second Epistle is addressed to Now in wide sea, among the cliffs now hid ; the Poet's Wife, and contains rememNo round the skyey zone the red waves brances of, and reflections on, all the leapt,
most interesting feelings and incidents Now in each narrow channel dark they slept. of his boyish and youthful days, inAt last lona burst into the scene,
terspersed with grateful acknowledgReclin'd amid the ev'ning waves, serene, The last beams fainting on her russet green.
ments of his present happiness, and Her crescent village, o'er the harbour hung, ment with his peaceful lot. That.man
many affecting expressions of contentSpread its pale smoke the breezeless air along,
is to be pitied, who can read this E. While from her highest mound the ruin'd pistle without sincere admiration of fane
the writer's accomplishments, and afWith proud composure, ey'd the desert main. fection for his amiable and simple chaWe gaind the bay, and trembling touch'd racter. What can be more touching the land
than the following remembrance of his On which, of old, religion's mighty hand Stretch'd from the skies, and half in clouds boyish happiness? conceal'd,
" Free as the gales, and early as the dawn, Stamp'd the broad signet of the law reveald. Forth did we ty along the level lawn,
When sacred call the master sent away, What if, amid the rural tribe, unknowe,
gave the happy summer-holiday! From Wordsworth's eye some moral glory Some, lightly sped where on the orchard shone, steep
Some beam of poesy and good combin'd, The shaken apples fell in pattering heap, That found the secret foldings of my mind?" to And lent their busy aid to gather in, And fill'd their pouches too-a venial sin !
We shall finish our quotations from Some, by the river-bank as gaily fared,
this part of the volume, with a short, And beld deep converse with the laughing vivid, and accurate, picture of one of laird.
the most beautiful scenes in the south Some, to the glen with nut-hook in their of Scotland.
hands; Telling their tales the while, in merry bands,
“ How laugh'd thine eyes, when from the Drew the brown cluster down with breaking Where sunk in shade retiring Leader fell,
bushy dell, crush, Or stain'd their lips with brambles from the Our wheels slow wound us up the open bush.
height, Some more retir’d (and I might be of these) Whence Tweed's rich valley burst upon the Lay on the wild bank, 'mid the hum of bees,
sight. Reading some legend old of Scottish fame,
Below, the river roll'd in spreading pride, The Bruce, the Douglas, and each warrior The lofty arch embrac'd its auburn ride : name;
Bright in the orient gleam the waters shone, Then homewards with the setting sun, to hear Here flowing free, there ridg’d with shelvThe solemn ev’ning duly clos'd with prayer! Each side the banks with fields and trees
ing stone, O why should pleasure youth's wild eye allure
were green, From Nature's guardian arms to scenes less High waving on the hills were harvests seen ; pure ?
The nodding sheaf mov'd heavily along, Why should ourmanhood be ambition 'sslave, And jocund reapers sang their morning song, Or creep the drudge of avarice to the grave ? Calm slept the clouds on cloven Eildon laid, Why should the sun on man's unconscious And distant Melrose peep'd from leafy shade." gaze,
The translations are, we think, more Pour from the eastern hill his living rays ? Or why his softening splendour gild the west, unequal than the original composiNor raise one wish that such may be our rest? ţions, some of them being excessively Ah! far at sea, and wanderers from the shore, bad, and others most admirable. The Nature still calls us, but we hear no more?
cause of this seems to have been an Yet where her pensive look reflection throws, occasional desire to indulge in fantasRemember'd forms of beauty yield repose ; tic ingenuity of versification and exOn them she pauses, and with filling eye, . pression, in which the worthy Transla. Plans the blest refuge of futurity !
tor not unfrequently exhibits a most Thus to the scenes in which our childhood
portentous forgetfulness of common past, Memory returns with love that still can last ; sense, and employs a sort of language Wherever, since, our vagrant course has been, to our ears wholly unintelligible. Whatever troubled hours have come between, When not beset by these unlucky fits Those simple beauties, which could first en of ingenuity, he catches the spirit of gage
the original with great felicity; and Our hearts, still please through each suc his translations, or rather imitations of
ceeding age ; Nor are they yet 60 sunk in meaner care,
Horace, are indisputably the most eleThat nature's image quit its impress there!"
gant and graceful of any in the EngThere is much feeling in the fol- translations of several of the Odes,
lish language. He has proved, by his lowing passage; “ Can I forget the hallow'd hour I past
“how gracefully any short and classiIn Grasmere chapel, in the lonely waste,
cal composition may be arranged in a Driven by the rains that patter'd on the lake, form which at once insures brevity, (Perhaps no holier cause) repose to take ? and unites elegance with the most The simple people to each separate hand varied and perfect melody of versificaDivided, youths and maids in different band; tion.” What can be finer than the Of the great power of God, their pastor spoke; air he has thrown over the 32 Odle of Responsive from the hills loud thunders Book I. “ Possimus si quid," &c.
broke, From the black-smoking hills whose waver " O lyre, if vacant in the leafy shade, ing line
We've us'd thy ministry in many & strain, Through lead-bound panes was dimly seen Not speedily to die, come yet again, to shine.
And let the Latian song thy chords pervade : I felt the voice of Man and Nature roll By him of Lesbos first harmonious made, The deep conviction on my bending soul ! The warrior bard, who, on tlie tented plain,
Or thrown ashore dripping from the rough The translation from Tyrtæus main,
very dull, but the fault is in the ori. Still pour'd the lay with thy all-powerful aid ginal. Tyrtæus, it is said, roused the In praise of Bacchus and the heavenly Nine, And made bright Venus and her boy his his poetry. If so, it is a proof that
martial enthusiasm of the Spartans by theme, And sang his black-eyed love with locks of the Spartans had no taste--for nothing jet ;
can be heavier and more spiritless than O shell, soft trembling in the hands divine his remains. The Poet-Laureate, Pye, Of Phæbus, at the feasts of Jove supreme, translated some of those martial effuSweet nurse of care, favour thy suppliant sions with kindred lumpishness and
a few lines read to a volunteer comWe cannot refrain from quoting pany by their Colonel, set the soldiers. another, perhaps still more beautiful. into a sound sleep on parade. Pol“ Fount of Bandusia, crystalline, most pure, whele rendered them still more som Worthy wine-offerings, and the flower-wove niferous, for they overcame the wakewreath!
fulness of the Cornish miners; and, To-morrow, vow'd to thee, a kid beneath
lastly, Professor Young of Glasgow The knife shall bleed, whose swelling brows recited them in choice English to two Bud with their primal horns, and seem se
hundred sleeping tyros, in the Greek
class-room of that university. We Of future fight, and love already breathe had forgotten Mr Charles Elton, who Wanton: Vain presage! for he soon in death himself fell fairly asleep during the Shall stain thy streams with ruddy drops process of translation-and the present impure.
version seems to have been made beThy icy streams the dog stars burning hour
tween a snore and a yawn, and is the Afflicts not; in their cool the toil'd ox laves His scorched sides; thy shades refresh the most powerful soporific in the whole
materia poetica. We decline quoting flocks. Fame too is thine, if aught the poet's power be unable to peruse the rest of this
any part of it, lest our readers shoulă Who sings thy dipping oaks, romantic caves, And pratting rills light-leaping from their article. rocks."
The Translator, however, soon gets In his translation of a Chorus in the upon better ground, and gives us about Phenissæ of Enripides, he has endea- twenty select sonnets from Petrarch. voured, and we think successfully, to We have compared his translations trace a strong resemblance to a cele- with those of Mrs Dobson, Dr Nott, brated passage in Shakspeare.
and many anonymous writers, and “ Grim visag'd war, wherefore do blood and they far outshine' them all, both in fideath
delity and elegance. It is a most misThan merry meetings more thy temper erable mistake, to believe that Petrarch. suit ?
has no genuine sensibility. Is not his Why labour still for the victorious wreath ? 24th Sonnet of Book II. most pathetic?
Nor rather capering with nimble foot It is thus exquisitely rendered :
To the lascivious pleasing of a lute, “ The eyes, the arms, the hands, the feet, Join wanton nymphs in their delightful
Which made my thoughts and words so Their brows with garlands bound; like
warm and wild, clustering fruit
That I was almost from myself exil'd, While o'er thy front are shook its youthful And render'd strange to all the human race : treasures?
The lucid locks that curl'd in golden grace, Ah no! these sportive tricks are not among the lightening beam that when my angel thy pleasures.
smilla In dreadful march, and with alarum stern,
Diffus'd o'er earth an Eden heavenly mild : Thy mailed warriors thou dost love to
What are they now ? Dust, lifeless dust, <-5 lead ;'!
alas! And now their bloody way the Argives learn
And I live on! a melancholy slave, To Thebes :-Thou, mounted on thy
Tost by the tempest in a shatter'd bark, barbed steed,
Reft of the lovely light that cheer'd the wave; Boundest before them o'er Ismenus' mead,
The flame of genius, too, extinct and dark. To where the fearful adversaries pour,
Here let my rays of love conclusion have; I Seizing their hung up arms with frantic Mute be the lyre ; tears best my sorrows speed
mark.” Unto the walls, and people every tower.
One other quotation, and we must Dark, dark the clouds above our royal house say good-bye to this accomplished that lower!!
scholar and gentleman.