The heavy groaning, produced by the water in the timbers of the Ariel, at that moment added its impulse to the raging feelings of Dillon, and he cast himself headlong into the sea. The water, thrown by the rolling of the surf on the beach, was necessarily returned to the ocean in eddies, in different places favorable to such an action of the element. Into the edge of one of these counter-currents, that was produced by the very rocks on which the schooner lay, and which the watermen call the " under-tow," Dillon had unknowingly thrown his person; and when the waves had driven him a short distance from the wreck he was met by a stream that his most desperate efforts Icould not overcome. He was a light and powerful swimmer, and the struggle was hard and protracted. With the shore immediately before his eyes, and at no great distance, he was led, as by a false phantoin, to continue his efforts, although they did not advance him a foot. The old seaman, who at first had watched his motions with careless indifference, understood the danger of his situation at a glance, and, forgetful of his own fate, he shouted aloud, in a voice that was driven over the struggling victim to the ears of his shipmates on the sands: — "Sheer to port, and clear the under-tow! Sheer to the southward!"

Dillon heard the sounds, but his faculties were too much obscured by terror to distinguish their object; he, however, blindly yielded to the call, and gradually changed his direction until his face was once more turned towards the vessel. Tom looked around him for a rope, but all had gone over with the spars, or been swept away by the waves. At this moment of disappointment his eyes met those of the desperate Dillon. Calm and inured to horrors as was the veteran seaman, he involuntarily passed his hand before his brow to exclude the look of despair he encountered; and when, a moment afterwards, he removed the rigid member, he beheld the sinking form of the victim as it gradually settled in the ocean, still struggling with regular but impotent strokes of the arms and feet to gain the wreck, and to preserve an existence that had been so much abused in its hour of allotted probation. "He will soon meet his God, and learn that his God knows him!' murmured the coxswain to himself. As he yet spoke,

the wreck of the Ariel yielded to an overwhelming sea, and after a universal shudder, her timbers and planks gave way, and were swept towards the cliffs, bearing the body of the simple-hearted coxswain among the ruins.



WILLIAM CULLEN BRYANT, who may be said to share with Longfellow the first place in the list of American poets, was born in Cummington, Massachusetts, in 1794. His precocity was remarkable. At the age of ten he made translations from the Latin poets, which were published, and three years later, wrote The Embargo, a satirical poem of great merit. He studied law, and practiced that profession for some time in Great Barrington, Massachusetts. His early productions were regarded as the work of a precocious genius which would surely spend itself in these premature efforts; but the appearance of Thanatopsis, which was written in his nineteenth year, and was published in the North American Review, proved conclusively that he was not a mere youthful prodigy. In 1825 he removed to New York, and, with a partner, established the New York Review and Atheneum Magazine, to which he contributed some of his best poems. The next year he became editor of the Evening Post, and still holds that place. While he is best known by his poems, Mr. Bryant is considered by the best authorities one of the finest prose writers in the country. In England his poetry is held in high esteem; Thanatopsis, To a WaterFowl, Green River, etc., have received earnest praise from the leading English critics. Mr. Bryant is distinctively a student and interpreter of Nature; all her aspects and voices are familiar to him, and are reproduced in his poetry with a solemn and ennobling beauty which has never been attained by any other American poet. In many respects his verse resembles Wordsworth's; but its spirit is less introspective, and appeals more directly to the common understanding. Another striking characteristic of Mr. Bryant's poetry is its lofty moral tone, which is the eloquence of a great intellect warmed and controlled by high and pure impulses.


THE melancholy days are come, the saddest of the


Of wailing winds, and naked woods, and meadows brown and sear. Heaped in the hollows of the grove the withered leaves lie dead; They rustle to the eddying gust and to the rabbit's tread.

The robin and the wren are flown, and from the shrubs the jay, And from the wood-top calls the crow through all the gloomy day.

Where are the flowers, the fair young flowers, that lately sprung and stood

In brighter light and softer airs, a beauteous sisterhood ?
Alas! they all are in their graves; the gentle race of flowers
Are lying in their lowly beds, with the fair and good of ours.
The rain is falling where they lie; but the cold November rain
Calls not from out the gloomy earth the lovely ones again.

The wind-flower and the violet, they perished long ago,
And the brier-rose and the orchis died amid the summer's glow;
But on the hill the golden-rod, and the aster in the wood,

And the yellow sunflower by the brook in autumn beauty stood,
Till fell the frost from the clear cold heaven, as falls the plague on


And the brightness of their smile was gone from upland, glade, and glen.

And now, when comes the calm mild day, as still such days will


To call the squirrel and the bee from out their winter home;

When the sound of dropping nuts is heard, though all the trees are


And twinkle in the smoky light the waters of the rill,

The south-wind searches for the flowers whose fragrance late he bore, And sighs to find them in the wood and by the stream no more.

And then I think of one who in her youthful beauty died,
The fair meek blossom that grew up and faded by my side.
In the cold moist earth we laid her, when the forests cast the leaf,
And we wept that one so lovely should have a life so brief;
Yet not unmeet it was that one, like that young friend of ours,
So gentle and so beautiful, should perish with the flowers.


To him who in the love of Nature holds
Communion with her visible forms, she speaks
A various language; for his gayer hours
She has a voice of gladness, and a smile
And eloquence of beauty; and she glides.
Into his darker musings with a mild
And gentle sympathy that steals away
Their sharpness ere he is aware.
When thoughts
Of the last bitter hour come like a blight
Over thy spirit, and sad images
Of the stern agony, and shroud, and pall,
And breathless darkness, and the narrow house,
Make thee to shudder and grow sick at heart,
Go forth unto the open sky, and list
To Nature's teachings, while from all around

Earth and her waters, and the depths of air-
Comes a still voice: Yet a few days, and thee
The all-beholding sun shall see no more

In all his course; nor yet in the cold ground,
Where thy pale form was laid with many tears,
Nor in the embrace of ocean, shall exist

Thy image. Earth, that nourished thee, shall claim
Thy growth, to be resolved to earth again,
And, lost each human trace, surrendering up
Thine individual being, shalt thou go

To mix forever with the elements,;

To be a brother to the insensible rock,

And to the sluggish clod which the rude swain
Turns with his share and treads upon. The oak
Shall send his roots abroad, and pierce thy mould.
Yet not to thy eternal resting-place

Shalt thou retire alone,

- nor couldst thou wish
Couch more magnificent. Thou shalt lie down
With patriarchs of the infant world, with kings,
The powerful of the earth, the wise, the good,
Fair forms and hoary seers of ages past,
All in one mighty sepulcher. The hills,
Rock-ribbed and ancient as the sun; the vales,
Stretching in pensive quietness between ;
The venerable woods; rivers that move
In majesty, and the complaining brooks,

That make the meadows green; and, poured round all,
Old ocean's gray and melancholy waste,

Are but the solemn decorations all

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Of the great tomb of man. The golden sun,
The planets, all the infinite host of heaven,
Are shining on the sad abodes of death
Through the still lapse of ages. All that tread
The globe are but a handful to the tribes
That slumber in its bosom. Take the wings
Of morning, traverse Barca's desert sands,
Or lose thyself in the continuous woods
Where rolls the Oregon, and hears no sound
Save his own dashings, yet the dead are there.

And millions in those solitudes, since first

The flight of years began, have laid them down
In their last sleep; the dead reign there alone.
So shalt thou rest; and what if thou withdraw
In silence from the living, and no friend
Take note of thy departure? All that breathe
Will share thy destiny. The gay will laugh
When thou art gone, the solemn brood of care
Plod on, and each one, as before, will chase
His favorite phantom; yet all these shall leave
Their mirth and their employments, and shall come
And make their bed with thee.' As the long train
Of ages glide away, the sons of men
The youth in life's green spring, and he who goes
In the full strength of years, matron and maid,
The bowed with age, the infant in the smiles
And beauty of its innocent age cut off-

Shall one by one be gathered to thy side

By those who in their turn shall follow them.

So live, that when thy summons comes to join The innumerable caravan that moves

To the pale realms of shade, where each shall take
His chamber in the silent halls of death,

Thou go not, like the quarry-slave at night,
Scourged to his dungeon, but, sustained and soothed
By an unfaltering trust, approach thy grave

Like one who wraps the drapery of his couch
About him, and lies down to pleasant dreams.


WHITHER, midst falling dew,

While glow the heavens with the last steps of day, Far, through their rosy depths, dost thou pursue

Thy solitary way?

Vainly the fowler's eye

Might mark thy distant flight to do thee wrong, As, darkly painted on the crimson sky,

Thy figure floats along.

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