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THE HEBREW MOTHER.

89

What sought they thus afar ?

Bright jewels of the mine ?
The wealth of seas, the spoils of war?

--They sought a faith's pure shrine !
Ay, call it holy ground,

The soil where first they trod !
They have left unstain'd what there they found

Freedom to worship God !

[These glorious verses will find an echo in the breast of

every true descendant of the Pilgrims; and give the name of their authoress a place in many hearts. She has laid our community under a common obligation of gratitude. Every one must feel the sublimity and poetical truth with which she has conceived the scene presented, and the inspiration of that deep and holy strain of sentiment, which sounds forth like the pealing of an organ. Ed.]

THE HEBERW MOTHER.

The rose was in rich bloom on Sharon's plain,
When a young mother with her first-born thence
Went up to Zion, for the boy was vow'd
Unto the Temple-service ;-by the hand
She led him, and her silent soul, the while,
Oft as the dewy laughter of his eye
Met her sweet serious glance, rejoiced to think
That aught so pure, so beautiful, was hers,
To bring before her God. So pass'd they on,
O’er Judah's hills; and wheresoe'er the leaves
Of the broad sycamore made sounds at noon,
Like lulling rain-drops, or the olive-boughs,
With their cool dimness, cross’d the sultry blue
Of Syria's heaven, she paused, that he might rest ;
Yet from her own meek eyelids chased the sleep
That weigh'd their dark fringe down, to sit and watch
The crimson deepening o'er his cheek's repose,
As at a red flower's heart.-And were a fount
Lay like a twilight-star 'midst palmy shades,
Making its banks green gems along the wild,
There too she linger'd, from the diamond wave
Drawing bright water for bis rosy lips,

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THE IIEBREW MOTHER.

And softly parling clusters of jet curls
To bathe his brow. At last the Fane was reach'd,
The Earth's One Sanctuary - and rapture hush'd
Her bosom, as before her, through the day,
It rose, a mountain of white marble, steep'd
In light, like floating gold. But when that hoor
Waned to the farewell moment, when the boy
Lifted, through rainbow-gleaming tears, his eye
Beseechingly to hers, and half in fear
Turn'd from the white-robed priest, and round her arm
Clung as the ivy clings—the deep spring-tide
Of nature then swelld high, and o'er ber child
Bending, her soul broke forth, in mingled sounds
Of weeping and sad

song. "* Alas," she cried,
“ Alas ! my boy, thy gentle grasp is on me,
The bright tears quiver in thy pleading eyes,

And now fond thoughts arise,
And silver cords again to earth have won me;
And like a vine thou claspest my full heart-

How shall I bence depart?
“ How the lone paths retrace where thou wert playing
So late, along the mountains, at my side ?

And I, in joyous pride,
By every place of flowers my course delaying
Wove, e'en as pearls, the lilies round thy hair,

Beholding thee so fair! “ And oh ! the home whence thy bright smile hath parted, Will it not seem as if the sunny day

Turu'd from its door away?
While through its chambers wandering, weary-hearted,
I languish for thy voice, which past me still

Went like a singing rill?
“ Under the palm-trees thou no more shall meet me,
When from the fount at evening I return,

With the full water-urn;
Nor will thy sleep's low dove-like breathings greet me,
As 'midst the silence of the stars I wake,

And watch for thy dear sake.
“ And thou, will slumber's dewy cloud fall round thee,
Without thy mother's hand to smooth thy bed?

Wilt thou not vainly spread
Tbine arms, when darkness as a veil hath wound thee,
To fold my neck, and lift up, in thy fear,

A cry which none shall hear?

THE CHILD AND DOVE.

91

* What have I said, my child ?--Will He not hear thee,
Who the young ravens heareth from their nest?

Shall He not guard thy rest,
And, in the bush of holy niidnight near thee,
Breathe o'er thy soul, and fill its dreams with joy?

Thou shalt sleep soft, my boy!
"I give thee to thy God—the God that gave thee,
A wellspring of deep gladness to my heart !

And precious as thou art,
And pure as dew of Hermon, He shall have thee,
My own, my beautiful, my undefil'd!

And thou shalt be His child.
“ Therefore, farewell !I go, my soul may fail me,
As the hart panteth for the water-brooks,

Ycarning for thy sweet looks
But thou, my first born, droop not, nor bewail me;
Tbou in the Shadow of the Rock shalt dwell,

The Rock of Strength.-Farewell!"

THE CHILD AND DOVE.

SUGGESTED BY CHANTREY'S STATUE OF LADY LOUISA

RUSSELL.

Thou art a thing on our dreams to rise,
Midst the echoes of long-lost melodies,
And to fing bright dew front the morning back,
Fair form! on each image of childhood's track.
Thou art a thing to recall the hours,
When the love our souls was on leaves and flowers,
When a world was our own in some dim sweet grove,
And treasure untold in one captive dove.
Are they gone ? can we think it, while thou art there,
Thou joyous child with the clustering hair?
Is it not Spring that indeed breathes free
And fresh o'er each thought, while we gaze on thee?

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THE CHILD'S LAST SLEEP.

No! never more may we smile as thou
Sheddest round smiles from thy sunny brow;
Yet something it is, in our hearts to shrine
A memory of beauty undimm'd as thine.
To have met the joy of thy speaking face,
To have felt the spell of thy breezy grace,
To have linger'd before thee, and turn'd, and borne
One vision away of the cloudless morn.

THE CHILD'S LAST SLEEP.

ON A MONUMENT BY CHANTREY FOR AN INFANT

DAUGHTER OF SIR THOMAS ACKLAND,

Thou sleepest—but when wilt thou wake, fair child?
-When the fawn awakes 'midst the forest wild ?
When the lark's wing mounts with the breeze of morn,
When the first rich breath of the rose is born?
-Lovely thou sleepest, yet something lies
Too deep and still on thy soft-seal'd eyes ;
Mournful, though sweet, is thy rest to seam
When will the hour of thy rising be?
Not when the fawn wakes, not when the lark
On the crimson cloud of the morn floats dark--
Grief with vain passionate tears hath wet
The hair, shedding gleams from thy pale brow yet;
Love with sad kisses unfelt haths prest
Thy meek dropt eyelids and quiet breast;
And the glad Spring, calling out bird and bee,
Shall colour all blossoms, fair child, but thee.
Thou'rt gone from us, bright one-that thou shouldst die,
And life be left to the butterfly ! *
Thou 'rt gone, as a dew-drop is swept from the bough,
-Oh! for the world where thy home is now !

* A butterfly, as if futtering on a flower, is sculptured on the THE LADY OF THE CASTLE.

monument.

93

How may we love but in doubt and fear,
How may we anchor our fond hearts here,
How should e'en Joy but a trembler be,
Beautiful dust! when we look on thee?

THE LADY OF THE CASTLE.

FROM

66

THE PORTRAIT GALLERY," AN UNFINISHED

PORM.

Trou seest her pictured with her shining hair,
(Famed were its tresses in Provençal song,)
Half braided, half o'er cheek and bosom fair
Let loose, and pouring sunny waves along
Her gorgeous vest.-A child's light hand is roving
'Midst the rich curls, and oh! how meekly loving
Its earnest looks are lifted to the face,
Which bends to meet its lip in laughing grace.-
Yet that bright lady's eye methinks hath less
Of deep, and still, and pensive tenderness,
Than might beseem a mother's-on her brow
Something too much there sits of native scorn,
And her smile kindles with a conscious glow,
As from the thought of sovereign beauty bora.

- These may be dreams--but how shall woman tell
Of woman's shame, and not with tears ? she fell!
That mother left that child-went hurrying by
Its cradle-haply, not without a sigh-
Haply one moment o'er its rest serene
She hung-but no! it could not thus have been,
For she went on forsook her home, her hearth,
All pure affection, all sweet household mirth,
To live a gaudy and dishonour'd thing,
Sharing in guilt the splendors of a king.
Her lord, in very weariness of life,
Girt on his sword for scenes of distant strife;
He reck'd no more of glory-grief and shame
Crush'd out his fiery nature, and his name
Died silently.--A shadow o'er his balls

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