(Written in her fourteenth year.)
Sweet Solitude! I love thy silent shade,
I love to pause when in life's mad career;
To view the chequered path before me laid,
And turn to meditate — to hope, to fear.
'T is sweet to draw the curtain on the world,
To shut out all its tumult, all its care;
Leave the dread vortex, in which all are whirled,
And to thy shades of twilight calm repair.
Yet, Solitude, the hand divine, which made
The earth, the ocean, and the realms of air,
Pointed how far thy kingdom should extend,
And bade thee pause, for he had fixed thee there.
Then, when disgusted with the world and man,
When sick of pageantry, of pomp, and pride,
To thee I'll fly, in thee I'll seek relief,
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(Written in her fifteenth year.)
Must every shore ring boldly to the voice
Of sweet poetic harmony, save this?
Rouse thee, America! for shame! for shame!
Gather thy infant bands, and rise to join
Thy glimmering taper to the holy flame:—
Such honour, if no other, may be thine.
Shall Gallia's children sing beneath the yoke?
Shall Ireland's harpstrings thrill, though all unstrung?.
And must America, her bondage broke,
Oppression's blood-stains from her garment wrung,
Must she be silent? — who may then rejoice?
If she be tuneless, Harmony, farewell!
Oh! shame, America! wild freedom's voice
Echoes, 'shame on thee,' from her wild-wood dell.
Shall conquered Greece still sing her glories past?
Shall humbled Italy in ruins smile?
And canst thou then —
Isle of the ocean, say, whence comest thou?
The smoke thy dark throne, and the blaze round thy brow;
The voice of the earthquake proclaims thee abroad,
And the deep, at thy coming, rolls darkly and loud.
From the breast of the ocean, the bed of the wave,
Thou hast burst into being, hast sprung from the grave;
A stranger, wild, gloomy, yet terribly bright,
Thou art clothed with the darkness, yet crowned with the light.
Thou comest in flames, thou hast risen in fire;
The wave is thy pillow, the tempest thy choir;
They will lull thee to sleep on the ocean's broad breast,
A slumb'ring volcano, an earthquake at rest.
Thou hast looked on the isle — thou hast looked on the wave —
Then hie thee again to thy deep, watery grave;
Go, quench thee in ocean, thou dark, nameless thing,
Thou spark from the fallen one's wide flaming wing.
Farewell To Miss E. B.
(Written in her sixteenth year.)
Farewell, and whenever calm solitude's hour,
Shall silently spread its broad wings o'er your bower,
Oh! then gaze on yon planet, yon watch-fire divine,
And believe that my soul is there mingling with thine.
When the dark brow of evening is beaming with stars,
And yon crest of light clouds is the turban she wears,
When she walks forth in grandeur, the queen of the night,
Oh! then think that my spirit looks on with delight.
O'er the ocean of life our frail vessels are bounding,
And danger and death our dark pathway surrounding;
Destruction's bright meteors are dancing before,
And behind us the winds of adversity roar.
Oh! then come, let us light friendship's lamp on the wave,
If we're lost, it will shed its pure light o'er the grave,
Or 't will guide to the haven of Heaven at last,
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