« PreviousContinue »
"Return no more to your woodland
height, But ever here with me abide
In the land of everlasting light! Within the fleecy drift we'll lie,
We'll hang upon the rainbow's rim; And all the jewels of the sky Around thy brow shall brightly beam! And thou shalt bathe thee in the stream
That rolls its whitening foam aboon And ride upon the lightning's gleam,
And dance upon the orbed moon! We'll sit within the Pleiad ring.
We'll rest on Orion's starry belt, And I will bid my sylphs to sing The song that makes the dew-mist
melt; Their harps are of the umber shade,
That hides the blush of waking day, And every gleamy string is made
Of silvery moonshine's lengthened ray; And thou shalt pillow on my breast,
While heavenly breathings float around, And, with the sylphs of ether blest,
Forget the joys of fairy ground.”
Borne afar on the wings of the blast,
580 And he has reached the northern plain, And backed his fire-fly steed again, Ready to follow in its Alight The streaming of the rocket-light.
XXXIII She was lovely and fair to see And the elfin's heart beat fitfully; But lovelier far, and still more fair, The earthly form imprinted there; Nought he saw in the heavens above Was half so dear as his mortal love, For he thought upon her looks so meek, And he thought of the light flush on her
cheek; Never again might he bask and lie On that sweet cheek and moonlight eye, But in his dreams her form to see, 550 To clasp her in his reverie, To think upon his virgin bride, Was worth all heaven and earth beside.
But it rocks in the summer gale;
And now 'tis deadly pale; And now 'tis wrapp'd in sulphur smoke,
And quenched is its rayless beam, And now with a rattling thunder-stroke
It bursts in flash and flame. As swift as the glance of the arrowy lance
That the storm-spirit Alings from high, The star-shot flew o'er the welkin blue,
As it fell from the sheeted sky. As swift as the wind in its trail behind
The elfin gallops along, The fiends of the clouds are bellowing
loud, But the sylphid charm is strong;
600 He gallops unhurt in the shower of fire, While the cloud-fiends fly from the
blaze; He watches each flake till its sparks ex
pire, And rides in the light of its rays. But he drove his steed to the lightning's
speed, And caught a glimmering spark; Then wheeled around to the fairy ground,
And sped through the midnight dark.
XXXIV “Lady,” he cried, "I have sworn to-night, On the word of a fairy knight, To do my sentence-task aright; My honour scarce is free from stain, I may not soil its snows again; Betide me weal, betide me wo, Its mandate must be answered now.” 560 Her bosom heaved with many a sigh, The tear was in her drooping eye;
But she led him to the palace gate, And called the sylphs who hovered there, And bade them fly and bring him
straight Of clouds condensed a sable car.
(The text and notes for these and the follow Yet I owe two a debt—'tis my duty to ing poems of Halleck are taken from "The Poetical Writings of Fits-Greene Halleck," ed. J. G. Wilson, 1869.)
Of them I must speak in a kind, friendly
tone. TO MR. SIMPSON
Mrs. Barnes4--Shakespeare's heart would Manager of the Park Theater
have beat had he seen her
Her magic has drawn from me many a Fitz-GREENE HallECK
tear, I'm a friend to your theatre, oft have I
And ne'er shall my pen or its satire
chagrin her, And a still warmer friend, Mr. Simp
While pathos, and genius, and feeling son, to you;
are dear. And it gives me great pain, be assured,
And there's sweet Miss Leesugg,5 by-theto behold you
by, she's not pretty, Go fast to the devil, as lately you do.
She's a little too large, and has not too We scarcely should know you were still
much grace, in existence,
Yet, there's something about her so witchWere it not for the play-bills one sees
ing and witty, in Broadway;
'Tis pleasure to gaze on her goodThe newspapers all seem to keep at a
humored face. distance;
But as for your men-I don't mean to be Have your puffers deserted for want of
surly, their pay?
Of praise that they merit they'll each Poor Woodworth !2 his Chronicle died
have his share; broken-hearted;
For the present, there's Olliff,6 a famous
Lord Burleigh, What a loss to the drama, the world, and the age !
And Hopper and Maywood, a promisAnd Coleman3 is silent since Phillips de
H. parted, And Noah's too busy to think of the The New York Evening Post, Mar. 15, stage.
1819. Now, the aim of this letter is merely to mention
TO CROAKER, JUNIOR That, since all your critics are laid on the shelf,
Your hand, my dear Junior! we're all in Out of pure love for you, it is my kind
a flame intention
To see a few more of your flashes; To take box No. 3, and turn critic my
The Croakers forever! I'm proud of the
But, brother, I fear, though our Your ladies are safe-if you please you
is the same, may say it,
We shall quarrel like Brutus and Cassius. Perhaps they have faults, but I'll let
* Mrs. John Barnes appeared for the last time them alone;
in Philadelphia, July 25, 1851, as Lady Randolph,
which character she sustained with almost un. 1 For statement on the “Croaker Papers," see diminished excellence. pages 626 to 628.
afterward Mrs. : "Woodworth's Chronicle."-A periodical con. James H. Ilacket, and Mrs. Barnes, As ladies ducted by that popular poet for a brief period. and actresses, well meriting the poet's eulogiums,
3 William Coleman.-The editor of the New and highly estimated in public and private life. York Evening Post. He died during the sum 8 Ollifi, etc.---Actors of merit in various de. mer of 1829.
partments of their profession.
But why should we do so ? 'tis false what
they tell That poets can never be cronies; Unbuckle your harness, in peace let us
dwell; Our goose-quills will canter together as
well As a pair of Primel mouse-colored
ponies. Once blended in spirit, we'll make our
appeal, And by law be incorporate too; Apply for a charter in crackers to deal; A fy-flapper rampant shall shine on our
seal, And the firm shall be "Croaker & Co." Fun! prosper the union-smile, Fate, on
its birth! Miss Atropos, shut up your scissors; Together we'll range through the regions
of mirth, A pair of bright gemini dropped on the
How smooth the hair on every pate!
How vacant each immortal face! And then the tints, the shade, the flush, (I wrong them with a strain too
humble,) Not mighty Sherred's3 strength of brush Can match thy glowing hues, my Trum
bull! Go on, great painter! dare be dull
No longer after Nature dangle; Call rectilinear beautiful;
Fine grace and freedom in an angle: Pour on the red, the green, the yellow,
“Paint till a horse may mire upon it,” 30 And while I've strength to write or bel
low, I'll sound your praises in a sonnet.
D. The New York Evening Post, Mar. 15,
THE MAN WHO FRETS AT
THE NATIONAL PAINTING 2 Awake! ye forms of verse divine;
Painting! descend on canvas wing, And hover o'er my head, Desing!
Your son, your glorious son, I sing ! At Trumbull's name, I break my sloth,
To load him with poetic riches; The Titian of a table-cloth!
The Guido of a pair of breeches ! Come, star-eyed maid, Equality!
In thine adorer's praise I revel; Who brings, so fierce his love to thee,
All forms and faces to a level : Old, young, great, small, the grave, the
gay, Each man might swear the next his
brother, And there they stand in dread array,
To fire their votes at one another.
“A merry heart goes all the way
Winter's Tale. The man who frets at worldly strife,
Grows sallow, sour, and thin;
Is one perpetual grin;
He smiles when others sigh,
And laughs through wet and dry. There's fun in every thing we meet,
The greatest, worst, and best, Existence is a merry treat,
And every speech a jest; Be't ours to watch the crowds that pass
Where Mirth's gay banner waves;
And bastinade the knaves.
In clamor loud and hard,
And Paulding styled a bard;
Who turns it all to glee, And laughing, cries, with honest Puck, “Great Lord! what fools ye be."
D. The New York Evening Post, Mar. 19,
1819. * Jacob Sherred. A wealthy painter and glazier.
How bright their buttons shine! how
straight Their coat-flaps fall in plaited grace! 1 Nathaniel Prime.-A wealthy and worthy banker of the house of Prime, Ward & Sands, in Wall Street.
· The National Painting, “The Declaration of Independence," by Colonel Trumbull.
How apropos now was that street scene
in Brutus, Where the sign “Coffee-House” in plain
English was writ! By-the-way, “Billy Niblo's"2 would much
better suit us, And box, pit, and gallery, roar at the
TO CAPTAIN SEAMAN WEEKS Chairman of the Tenth Ward Indepen
dent Electors 4 CAPTAIN WEEKS, your right hand—though
I never have seen it, I shake it on paper, full ten times a
day; I love your Tenth Ward, and I wish I
lived in it; Do you know any house there to let
against May? I don't mind what the rent is, so long as
I get off From these party-mad beings, these
tongues without heads! I'm ashamed to be seen, sir, among such
a set of Clintonians, Tammanies, Coodies, and
How sparkled the eyes of the raptured
beholders, To see Kilner,: a Roman, in robes "a
la Grec!" How graceful they flowed o'er his neatly
turned shoulders ! How completely they set off his Johnny
"Charley Macheath."-In which character in the Beggars' Opera the celebrated English singer, Mr. Charles Incledon, during his engagement some time previous at the Park Theatre, had been favorably received.
: William Niblo.—The proprietor of the then most popular hotel and restaurant in New York, on the corner of William and Pine Streets, and still a highly-respected resident of this city.
3 Thomas Kilner, etc., etc.-Comedians at the theatre. The three latter had been recently engaged in England by Mr. Simpson during a professional visit there.