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return to the paternal halls of the muses, and banquet on his legitimate aliment. If he be a stranger to such sensations and longings, or derides them as fantastical, he may as well continue Don Juan. We ask only, as Jeremy Diddler says, for information; and should the author's answer be the production of genuine poetry, none would feel more unfeigned delight than ourselves, in the all-hail of an approving public. We have made, from the present attempt, the least exceptionable selections. Some of the stanzas, in which Byron is supposed to apostrophize his epic, are nielancholy enough, and in character:
“ And though with thee, my song and life should cease,
Thou! the last note my harp shall ever strike,
To form my shroud and cerement, (for 'tis like,
Though now the Miner, Death, delves 'neath the dike
“ If so it chance that I should perish, ere
Thy tale be told, thy fame and fate be sung,
Around whose threshold, poisons thick have clung ;
And fair is foul,'-upon whose couch have hung
pp. 8, 9. The whole system of philosophy, and a droll system it is, to be gleaned from the pages of Don Juan, is, we believe, contained in the first of the following stanzas :“ 'Tis a cold, calculating, selfish world;
Helpless as Infancy-hopeless as Age;
A stepping-stone to Hell-in wisest rage-
Disease its instrument, and Death its gage-
" Yet, in my boyhood, Woman! I loved thee!
And, as the Jordan mingles its sweet wave
Whose sluggish surge scarce motion bears, to lave
Did home-but now the infidel and slave:
6 'Tis vain, and worse than vain, to think on joys,
Which, like the hour that's gone, return no morc;
Billows that swell, to burst upon the shore
(Deceitful as the shell that seems to roar
They sink in sorrow's sea, and ne'er emerge."-p. 23–25. A long apostrophe to Napoleon is so unequal, that we are perplexed in quoting from it. The author gets upon too high a key to escape occasional rhodomontade and bathos. “ Farewell, Napoleon! if thou had'st died
The coward scorpion's death--afraid, asham'd,
The weak had praised thee, but the wise had blam'd ;
With Spirit unsubdued, with Soul untam’d,
" Pity, for thee, shall weep her fountains dry!
Mercy, for thee, shall bankrupt all her store!
And Honour, twine the wreath, thy temples o'er!
And smiling Seraphs open wide Heav'n's door!
sé Farewell, Napoleon! a long farewell!
A stranger's tongue, alas! must hymn thy worth ;
Or sound in song, the spot that gave thee birth.”—pp. 28–30. We make but one more extract; in which the imitation of the original is well sustained. “Meanwhile, my own dear Daughter! long, too long,
A Father's Pity, and a Father's Prayer,
Far from thy Home, although my Heart was there.
Suggest his Form--whose Image thou dost wear?
“ Hast thou been taught to syllable my Name ?
Ada! my Child !--too well I know thou'st not:
A Blight, a Bubble, or perhaps a Blot:
The Child forget the Parent who begot?
Will nature's intuition ne'er reveal
“ No matter-deeply graven on my Heart,
Painted in colours that can never fade,
To wake its Sunshine, and dispel its Shade.
Each Day hath faithful Fancy still portrayed
“ I stand upon Life's Desert:-I'm alone,
I shelter nothing, and I nothing bear.
Transplanted, -where? by whom? No matter where.
Sighs are unfrequent, and Smiles still more rare :
• The Loss of Thee, my Child !-Hope, hopeless grows,
And yet the Hope to see thee cannot cease;
That drop in Streams to sink without increase.
My latest Tear shall flow for Thee, and Greecom-
As Greece once was—and once again shall be."-pp. 38, 39.
66 The heart that feels as I have felt,
When forced from kindred hearts to sever,
To leave and leave, perchance, forever ;'
6 A father's burning hand I wrung;
I kiss'd a mother's pallid clieek ;
I felt too much--too much to speak!
That parting hour, that sad adieu,
“My foot is on a foreign strand-
But let me wander where I will,
My heart is with my kindred still;
“I think of her whose heart of truth
Is crumbling now to kindred clay;
From me, and from the world away :
6 I've left my land—I've left thy grave;
All that I love in life or death:
What seek I here?-Fame's fleeting breath?
“ The prison-isle of him whose glance
Sent awe throughout the world around;
A sun-bright wreath of glory-bound,
Some conquer'd nation's diadem!
There is very
* Come hither, peasant! tell me, where
Is he who dwelt in yonder vale? * Signor, I neither know nor care;
· He came-he's gone; though short the tale, 'Tis all I have to tell.' He came-
He's gone! oh yes! this, this is Fame!"--pp. 117–120. Mr. Pinkney's poetry we catch a strain of another and a higher mood. His genius demands more especial notice than in these hasty remarks we are able to bestow. little tameness in his compositions, and no lack of imagination. On the contrary, his luxuriance amounts sometimes, perhaps, to a fault; he is too much on the stretch for metaphor, and wings his flight to too remote regions in his quest. So, also, in the selection of poetical language, he is sometimes led to employ expressions that are quaint, in order to be not prosaic. He has an obvious partiality for the manner of Byron, and the tone of thought and cadence of his verses often remind us of the occasional impassioned pieces of that poet. The perusal of this small volume has been refreshing; and, wonderful
indeed for a reviewer! we wished, at turning the last leaf, that there had been more of it. We do not, however, like the largest poem best. It is a story (or rather a fragment of one) of guilty, intense, and unhappy passion; and although redundant with imagery and ornament, is sometimes obscure and extravagant, as such legends generally are. Besides, the age has been overstocked with them; and we believe people are well tired of straining their sensibilities into a consonance and sympathy with the supposed feelings, soliloquies, and confessions of murderers and robbers, who have linked "one virtue with a thousand crimes;" which virtue, after all, probably, consists only in their constancy to an unlawful and immoral attachment. We doubt whether all history, general or domestic, can furnish half the number of refined bravoes celebrated in modern verse. Intense passion soon burns itself out; and it is a vain attempt to paint as sublime, love enduring among the horrors of remorse, and the terrors of penal justice. The subject is a legitimate one for tragedy, where the moral is obvious, and where even the virtues of the culprit cannot extenuate crime or prevent punishment. But in the school of which we speak, we are called upon to admire the nobler qualities, only as under the dominion of a tyrannizing lust, and to sorrow, not for the commission of guilt, but for its unfortunate consequences. Is it not the province of poetry, to gather up the bright relics that have survived the fall-to describe heroism, and love, and friendship, and natural affection, strong in adversity, and triumphing in death? The relish for such excitement, surely, is not extinct; and now, certainly, there is no originality in taking a desperado for a hero. Why then should a man of genius employ the rich resources of his fine and mysterious perception of associations and resemblances, in scattering flowers and perfumes over the couch of a dying ruffian? This has been often and better said ; but good poets are too scarce among us, to render well-meant suggestions idle to one whose promise is as great as that of our author.
Most of our readers, we presume, have seen and admired all or some of the fugitive pieces in this volume. Although our selections from others have already transcended our usual measure, we feel bound not to pass by Mr. Pinkney without any extracts. We have taken, almost at random, two; the one of a sad, the other of a more cheerful, character:
“By woods and groves the oracles
Of the old age were nursed;
The spectral warning first,