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THE DESTINY OF NATIONS.
Auspicious Reverence! Hush all meaner song,
Such symphony requires best instrument. Seize, then, my soul! from Freedom's trophied dome, The Harp which hangeth high between the Shields Of Brutus and Leonidas! With that Strong music, that soliciting spell, force back Earth's free and stirring spirit that lies entranced.
For wbat is Freedom, but the unfetter'd use Of all the powers which God for use had given ? But chiefly this, him First, him Last to View Through meaner powers and secondary things Effulgent, as through clouds that veil his blaze. For all that meets the bodily sense I deem Symbolical, one mighty alphabet For infant minds; and we in this low world Placed with our backs to bright Reality, That we may learn with young unwounded ken The substance from its shadow. Infinite Love, Whose latence is the plenitude of All, Thou with retracted Beams, and Self-eclipse Veiling, revealest thine eternal Sun.
But some there are who deem themselves most free When they within this gross and visible sphere Chain down the winged thought, scoffing ascent, Proud in their meanness: and themselves they cheat With noisy emptiness of learned phrase, Their subtle fluids, impacts, essences, Self-working tools, uncaused effects, and all Those blind Omniscients, those Almighty Slaves, Untenanting creation of its God.
And what if some rebellious, o'er dark realms Arrogate power? yet these train up to God, And on the rude eye, unconfirm'd for day, Flash meteor-lights better than total gloom. As ere from Lieule-Oaive's vapoury bead The Laplander beholds the far-off Sun Dart his slant beam on uno ing snows, While yet the stern and solitary Night Brooks no alternate sway, the Boreal Morn With mimic lustre substitutes its gleam, Guiding his course or by Niemi lake Or Balda-Zhiok,' or the mossy stone Of Solfar-kapper, 2 wbile the snowy blast Drifts arrowy by, or eddies round his sledge, Making the poor babe at its mother's back 3 Scream in its scanty cradle: he the while Wins gentle solace as with upward eye He marks the streamy banners of the North, Thinking himself those happy spirits shall join Who there in floating robes of rosy light Dance sportively. For Fancy is the Power That first unsensualizes the dark mind, Giving it new delights; and bids it swell With wild activity; and peopling air, By obscure fears of Beings invisible, Emancipates it from the grosser thrall Of the present impulse, teaching Self-control, Till Superstition with unconscious band Seat Reason on her thrope. Wherefore not vain, Nor yet without permitted power impressid, I deem'd those legends terrible, with which The polar ancient thrills his uncouth throng; Whether of pitying Spirits that make their moan O'er slaughter'd infants, or that Giant Bird Vuokho, of whose rushing wings the noise Is Tempest, when the unutterable shape 4 Speeds from the mother of Death, and utters once That shriek, which never Murderer heard and lived. Or if the Greenland Wizard in strange trance Pierces the untravella realms of Ocean's bed (Where live the innocent, as far from cares As from the storms and overwhelming waves Dark tumbling on the surface of the deep), Over the abysm, even to that ultermost cave By mis-shaped prodigies beleaguer'd, such As Farth ne'er bred, nor Air, nor the upper Sea.
There dwells the Fury Form, whose unheard name With eager eye, pale cheek, suspended breath,
'Balda Zhiok; i. e, mons altitudinis, the highest mountain in Lapland.
· Solfar Kapper; capitium Solfar, hic locus omnium quotquot veterum Lapponum superstitio sacrificiis religiosoque cultui dedicavit, celebratissimus erat, in parte sinus australis situs semimilliaris spatio a mari distans. Ipse locos, quem curiositatis gratia aliquando me invisisse memini, duabus prealtis lapidibus, sibi invicem oppositis, quorum alter musco circumdatus erat, constabat, -LEEMICs De Lapponibus.
* The Lapland Women carry their infants at their back in a piece of excavated wood, which serves them for a cradle. Opposite to the infant's mouib ihere is a bole for it to breath througb.-Mirandum prorsus est et vix credibile nisi cui vidisset contigit. Lappones hyeme iter facientes per vastas montes, perque horrida et invia tesqua, eo presertim tempore quo omnia perpetuis nivibus obtecta sunt et nives ventis agitantur et in gyros aguntur, viam ad destinata loca absque errore in venire posse, lactantem autem infantem si quem babeat, ipsa mater in dorso bajulat, in excavato ligno (Gieedik ipsi vocant) quod pro cunis utuntur : in hoc ipfans pannis et pellibus convolutos colligatus jacet.—LELNICS De Lapponibus. • Jaibme Aibmo.
But properties are God: the naked mass (If mass there be, fantastic Guess or Ghost) Acts only by its inactivity. Here we pause humbly. Others boldlier think That as one body seems the aggregate Of Atoms numberless, each organized ; So, by a strange and dim similitude, Infinite myriads of self-conscious minds Are one all-conscious Spirit, which informs With absolute ubiquity of thought (Uis one eternal self-affirming Act!) All his involved Mopads, that yet seem With various province and apt agency Each to pursue its own self-centering end. Some nurse the infant diamond in the mine; Some roll the genial juices through the oak; Some drive the mutinous clouds to clash in air, And rushing on the storm with whirlwind speed, Yoke the red lightning to their volleying car. Thus these pursue their never-varying course, No eddy in their stream. Others, more wild, With complex interests weaving human fates, Duteous or proud, alike obedient all, Evolve the process of eternal good.
And lips half-opening with the dread of sound,
Was moulded to such Features as declared Unsleeping Silence guards, worn out with fear, That Pity there had oft and strongly work’d, Lest, haply escaping on some treacherous blast, And sometimes Indignation. Bold her mien, The fateful word let slip the Elements,
And like a haughty Huntress of the woods And frenzy Nature. Yet the wizard her,
She moved : yet sure she was a gentle maid !
Beam'd forth so brightly, that who saw would say
Nor idly would have said--for she had lived
In this bad World as in a place of Tombs,
"T was the cold season, when the Rustic's eye
From the drear desolate whiteness of his fields If there be Beings of higher class ihan Man,
Rolls for relief to watch the skiey tints I deem no nobler province they possess,
And clouds slow varying their huge imagery ; Than by disposal of apt circumstance
When now, as she was wont, the healthful Maid To rear up Kingdoms : and the deeds they prompt,
Had left her pallet ere one beam of day Distinguishing from mortal agency,
Slanted the fog-smoke. She went forth alone, They chuse their human ministers from such states Urged by the indwelling angel-guide, that oft, As still the Epic song half fears to name,
With dim inexplicable sympathies Repellid from all the Minstrelsies that strike
Disquieting the Heart, shapes out Man's course The Palace-Roof and soothe the Monarch's pride. To the predoom'd adventure. Now the ascent
She climbs of that steep upland, on whose top And such, perhaps, the Spirit, who (if words
The Pilgrim-Man, who long since eve had watch'd
The alien shine of unconcerning Stars,
The winding sheep-track vale-ward : when, behold
In the first entrance of the level road The good and evil thing, in human lore
An unattended Team! The foremost horse
Lay with stretch'd limbs; the others, yet alive,
Hoar with the frozen night-dews. Dismally
The dark-red down now glimmer'd; but its gleams On the poor Labouring man with kindly looks, Disclosed no face of man. The Maiden paused, And minister refreshment to the tired
Then haild who might be near. No voice replied. Way-wanderer, when along the rough-hewn Bench From the thwart wain at length there reach'd her ear The sweltry man had stretch'd him, and aloft
A sound so feeble that it almost seem'd
Distant: and feebly, with slow effort pushid,
Saw crowded close beneath the coverture
A mother and her children-lifeless all, At Tales of cruel Wrong and strange Distress
Yet lovely! not a lineament was marridDad wept and shiver'd. To the tottering Eld
Death had put on so slumber-like a form! Still as a Daughter would she run : she placed
It was a piteous sight; and one, a babe, His cold Limbs at the sunny Door, and loved
The crisp milk frozen on its innocent lips, To hear him story, in his garrulous sort,
Lay on the woman's arm, its little hand Of his eventful years, all come and gone.
Stretch'd on her bosom.
So twenty seasons past. The Virgin's Form,
Mutely questioning, Active and tall, nor Sloth nor Luxury
The Maid gazed wildly at the living wretch. Had shrunk or paled. Her front sublime and broad, He, his head feebly turning, on the group Her flexile eye-brows wildly hair'd and low,
Look'd with a vacant stare, and his eye spoke And her full eye, now bright, now unillumed,
The drowsy calm that steals on worn-out anguish. Spake more than Woman's Thought; and all her face She shudder'd : bus, each vainer pang subdued, " They call the Good Spirit Torogarsuck. The other great but the rustic bands, with difficulty and toil
Quick disentangling from the foremost horse malignant spirit is a pameless Female ; she dwells under the sen in a great house, where she can detain in captivity all ibe animals of the stiff cramp'd team forced homeward. There arrived, the ocean by her magic power. When a dearuh befalls the Green- Anxiously tends him she with healing herbs, landers, an Angekok or magician must undertake a journey thither. And weeps and prays--but the numb power of Death He passes through the kingdom of souls, over an horrible abyss into the Palace of this phantom, and by bis cachantments causes the Spreads o'er his limbs; and ere the noon-tide hour, captive creatures to ascund directly to the surface of the ocean. The hovering spirits of his wife and Babes
Seo Crantz Hist. of Greenland, vol. I, 206. Hail bim immortal! Yet amid his pangs,
With interruptions long from ghastly throes,
Sent forth, when she the Protoplast beheld His voice had falter'd out this simple tale.
Stand beauteous on Confusion's charmed wave.
Moaning she fled, and entered the Profound
Of darkness palpable, Desert of Death
Sunk deep beneath Gehenna's massy roots.
the Beldame lurk'd They saw the neighbouring Hamlets flame, they heard And trembled; till engender'd by fierce llate, Uproar and shrieks! and terror-struck drove on Fierce Hate and gloomy Hope, a Dream arose, Through unfrequented roads, a weary way!
Shaped like a black cloud marked with streaks of fire. But saw nor house nor cottage. All had quench'd It roused the Hell-Hac: she the dew damp wiped Their evening hearth-fire : for the alarm had spread. From off her brow, and through the uncouth maze The air clipt keen, the night was fang'd with frost, Retraced her steps; but ere she reach'd the mouth And they provisionless! The weeping wife
Of that drear labyrinth, shuddering she paused, Ill husli'd her children's moans; and still they moan'd, Nor dared re-enter the diminished Gulf. Till Fright and Cold and Hunger drank their life. As through the dark vaults of some moulder'd Tower They closed their eyes in sleep, nor knew't was Death. (Which, fearful to approach, the evening Hind He only, lashing his o'er-wearied team,
Circles at distance in his homeward way) Gain'd a sad respite, till beside the base
The winds breathe hollow, deem'd the plaining groan Of the high hill his foremost horse dropped dead. Of prison'd spirits; with such fearful voice Then hopeless, strengthless, sick for lack of food, Night murmur'd, and the sound through Chaos went. He crept beneath the coverture, entranced,
Leap'd at her call her hideous-fronted brood ! Till waken’d by the maiden.-Such his tale.
A dark behest they heard, and rush'd on earth ;
Since that sad hour, in Camps and Courts adored, Ah! suffering to the height of what was suffer’d, Rebels from God, and Monarchis o'er Mankind !» Stung with too keen a sympathy, the Maid Brooded with moving lips, mute, startful, dark ! And now her flush'd tumultuous features shot
From his obscure haunt Such strange vivacity, as fires the eye
Shriek'd Fear, of Cruelty the ghastly Dam, Of misery Fancy-crazed! and now once more
Feverish yet freezing, eager-paced yet slow, Naked, and void, and fix'd, and all within
As she that creeps from forth her swampy reeds, The unquiet silence of confused thought
Ague, the biform Hag! when early Spring
Beams on the marsh-bred vapours.
« Even so» (the exulting Maiden said) Aside the beacon, up whose smoulder'd stones
« The sainted Heralds of Good Tidings fell, The tender ivy-trails crept thinly, there,
And thus they witnessed God! But now the clouds Unconscious of the driving element,
Treading, and storms beneath their feet, they soar Yea, swallow'd up in the ominous dream, she sate
Higher, and higher soar, and soaring sing Ghastly as broad-eyed Slumber! a dim anguish
Loud songs of Triumph! () ye spirits of God, Breathed from her look! and still, with pant and sob,
Hover around my mortal agonies !» Inly she toild to flee, and still subdued,
She spake, and instantly faint melody Felt an inevitable Presence near.
Melts on her ear, soothing and sad, and slow,
Such Measures, as at calmest idnight heard Thus as she toiled in troublous ecstasy,
By aged Hermit in his holy dream, An horror of great darkness wrapt her round,
Foretell and solace death ; and now they rise And a voice uttered forth unearthly tones,
Louder, as when with harp and mingled voice Calming her soul, - : 0 Thou of the Most High
The white-robed' multitude of slaughter'd saints Chosen, whom all the perfected in Heaven
At Heaven's wide-opened portals gratulant Behold expectant-
Receive some martyr'd Patriot. The harmony
Entranced the Maid, till each suspended sense (The following fragments were intended to form part of the Poem Brief slumber seized, and confused ecstasy. when finished.]
At length awakening slow, she gazed around : « Maid beloved of Heaven!.
And through a Mist, the relick of that trance (To her the tutelary Power exclaimed)
Still thinning as she gazed, an Isle appear'd, « Of Chaos the adventurous progeny
Its high, o'er-hanging, white, broad-breasted cliffs, Thou seest; foul missionaries of foul sire,
Glass'd on the subject ocean. A vast plain
Stretch'd opposite, where ever and anon
" Revel, vi, 9. u. And when he bad opened the fifth seal, I As what time after long and pestful calms,
saw under the aliar the souls of them tbat were slain for the word With slimy shapes and miscreated life
of God, and for the testimony which they beld. And white robes Poisoning the vast Pacific, the fresh breeze
were given unto every one of them, and it was said upto them tbat
they should rest yet for a little season, until their fellow servants Wakens the inerchant-sail uprising. Night
also and their brethren, bax should be killed as tbey were, should A heavy unimaginable moan
The Plough-man, following sad his meagre team, (Victims at once and Executioners),
fresh sculls unstartled, and the bones The congregated Husbandmen lay waste Of fierce hate-breathing combatants, who there The Vineyard and the Flarvest. As along All mingled lay beneath the common earth,
The Bothnic coast, or southward of the Line,
Yet if Leviathan, weary of ease,
A storm of waves breaks foamy on the strand.
And hence, for times and seasons bloody and dark, As she had newly left a couch of pain,
Short Peace shall skin the wounds of causeless War, Pale Convalescent! (yet some time to rule
And War, his strained sinews knit anew, Willi power exclusive o'er the willing world,
Still violate the unfinish'd works of Peace. That bless'd prophetic mandate then fulfillid,
But yonder look! for more demands thy view !» Peace be on Earth !) A happy while, but brief, He said: and straightway from the opposite Isle She seem'd to wander with assiduous feet,
A vapour sailed, as when a cloud, exhaled And heal'd the recent harm of chill and blight, From Egypt's fields that steam hot pestilence, And nursed each plant that fair and virtuous grew. Travels the sky for many a track less league,
Till o'er some Death-doom'd land, distant in vain, But soon a deep precursive sound moan'd hollow: It broods incumbent. Forth with from the Plain, Black rose the clouds, and now (as in a dream) Facing the Isle, a brighter cloud arose, Their reddening shapes, transformed to Warrior-hosts, And steer'd ils course which way the Vapour went. Coursed o'er the Sky, and battled in mid-air. Nor did not the large blood-drops fall from Heaven The Maiden pauscd, musing what this might mean. Portentous! while aloft were seen to float,
But long time pass'd not, ere that brighter cloud Like hideous features booming on the mist,
Return'd more bright; along the plain it swepl; Wan Stains of ominous Light! Resiyn'd, yet sad,
And soon from forth its bursting sides emerged The fair Form bowed her olive-crowned Brow,
A dazzling form, broad-bosom’d, bold of eye, Then o'er the plain with oft-reverted eye
And wild her hair, save where with laurels bound. Fled till a Place of Tombs she reach'd, and there
Not more majestic stood the healing God, Within a ruined Sepulchre obscure
When from his bow the arrow sped that slew Found Hliding-place.
Huge Python. Shriek'd Ambition's giant throng,
And with them hiss'd the Locust-fiends that crawl'd The delegated Maid
And glitter'd in Corruption's slimy track. Gazed through her tears, then in sad tones exclaim'd,
Great was their wrath, for short they knew their reign; * Thou mild-eyed Form! wherefore, ah! wherefore tled? And such commotion made they, and uproar, The Power of Justice, like a name all Light,
As when the mad Tornado bellows through Shone from thy hrow; but all they, who unblamed
The guilty islands of the western main, Dwelt in thy dwellings, call thec Happiness.
What time departing from their native shores, Ah! why, uninjured and unprofited,
Eboe, or Koromantyn's 'plain of Palms, Should multitudes against their brethren rush?
The Slaves in the West-Indies consider death as a passport to Why sow they guilt, still reaping Misery?
their native country. This sentiment is thas expressed in the inLenient of care, thy songs, O Peace! are sweet,
troduction to a Greek Prize-Ode on the Slave-Trade, of which the As after showers the perfumed gale of eve,
ideas are better tban the language in which they are conveyed. That flings the cool drops on a feverous cheek:
Ω σκοτου πυλας, Θανατε, προλειπων And gay altar piled with fruits.
Ες γενος σπενδοις υποζευχθεν Ατα But boasts the shrine of Dæmon War one charm,
Ου ξενισθη στη γενυων σπαραγμοί;
Αλλα και κυκλοισι χοροίτυποισι
Κ'ασματων χαρα φοβερος μεν εσσι And know not why the simple Peasants crowd
Αλλ' ομως Ελευθερια συνοικείς, Beneath the Chieftains' standard!, Thus the Maid.
Δασκιοις έπει πτερυγέσσι σησι To her the tutelary Spirit replied:
Α! θαλασσιον καθορωντες οιoμα « When Luxury and Lust's exhausted stores No more can rouse the appetites of Kings;
Αιθεροπλαγτοις υπο ποσσ' ανεισι When the low flattery of their reptile Lords
Πατριδ' επ' αιαν.
Ενθα μας Ερασαι Ερωμενησιν
Αμφι πηγησιν κιτρινων υπ' αλσων,
Οσσ' υπο βρoτοις επαθον βροτοι, τα
Leaving the Gates of Darkness, O Death! basten thou to « Race Therefore uninjured and unprofited
yoked with Misery! Thou wilt not be received with lacerations of
The infuriate spirits of the Murder'd make
Thus saying, from the answering Maid he pass'd, Fierce merriment, and vengeance ask of Heaven. And with him disappear'd the Ileavenly Vision. Warm'd with new influence, the unwholesome plain
· Glory to Thee, Father of Earth and Heaven! Sent ир its foulest fogs to meet the Morn:
All-conscious Presence of the Universe! The Sun that rose on Freedom, rose in blood!
Nature's vast Ever-acting Energy!
In Will, in Deed, Impulse of All to All! Maiden beloved, and Delegate of Heaven!,
Whether thy love with unrefracted ray (To her the tutelary Spirit said)
Beam on the Prophet's purged eye, or if • Soon shall the Morning struggle into Day,
Diseasing realms the enthusiast, wild of thought, The stormy Morning into cloudless Noon.
Scatter new frenzies on the infected throng, Much hast thou seen, nor all canst understand
Thou both inspiring and predooming both, But this be thy best Omen-Save thy Country!: Fit instruments and best, of perfect end :
Glory to Thee, Father of Earth and Heaven!, cheeks, nor with fanereal ululation-but with circling dances and
And first a landscape rose, the joy of songs. Thou art terrible indeed, yet thou dwellest with More wild and waste and desolate than where Liberiy, stero Genius! Borne on thy dark pinions over the swelling The white bear, drifting on a field of ice, of Ocean, they return to their native country. There, by the side of Fountains beneath Citron-grores, the lovers tell to their beloved Howls to her sunder'd cubs with piteous rage what borrors, being Men, they had endured from Men.
And savage agony.
1. POEMS OCCASIONED BY POLITICAL | appear to mortals. The second Strophe calls on men EVENTS OR FEELINGS CONNECTED to suspend their private joys and sorrows, and devote
them for a while to the cause of human nature in geWITH THEM.
neral. The first Epode speaks of the Empress of Russia, who died of an apoplexy on the 17th of November,
1796; having just concluded a subsidiary treaty with the When I bare borne in memory what has tamed Great nations, how engobling thoughts depart
Kings combined against France. The first and second When men change swords for ledgers, and desert
Antistrophe describe the Image of the Departing Year, etc.
of spirit, the downfall of this country.
Spirit who sweepest the wild Harp of Time!
It is most hard, with an untroubled ear
Thy dark inwoven harmonies to hear!
Yet, mine eye fix'd on Heaven's unchanging clime
Long when I listen'd, free from mortal fear,
With inward stillness, and submitted mind ;
When lo! its folds far waving on the wind,
I saw the train of the DEPARTING YEAR!
Starting from my silent sadness,
Then with no unholy madness,
Ere yet the enter'd cloud foreclosed my sight,
I raised the impetuous song, and solemnized his flight. 'Αγαν η αληθόμαντιν μ' έρείς.
Hither, from the recent tomb,
From the prison's direr gloom,
From Distemper's midnight anguish;
Or where, his two bright torches blending, events of time, however calamitous some of them may
Love illumines manhood's maze;
Or where, o'er cradled infants bending, "This Ode was composed on the 24th, 25th, and 26th days of
Hope has fix'd her wishful gaze, December, 1796: and was first published on the last day of that
Hither, in perplexed dance, year.
Ye Woes ! ye young-eyed Joys! advance!