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[Born in England in 1613, daughter of Thomas Dudley, steward to the Earl of Lincoln; died in New England in 1672. She married in 1629 Simon Bradstreet, who appears at that date to have been the successor to her father as the Earl's steward in the following year all three, with other Nonconformists, settled in New England. As may readily be inferred from the very early age at which she left her native shores, Mrs. Bradstreet, as an authoress, belongs exclusively to America. The first collection of her poems was published at Boston in 1640, with the long title of-Several Poems, compiled with great variety of wit and learning, full of delight, wherein especially is contained a Complete Discourse and Description of the Four Elements, Constitutions, Ages of Man, and Seasons of the Year; together with an Exact Epitome of the Three First Monarchies, viz.: the Assyrian, Persian, and Grecian, and the Beginning of the Roman Commonwealth to the end of their last King; with divers other pleasant and serious Poems. By a Gentlewoman of New England. This volume was reprinted in London in 1650; the lofty title of "The Tenth Muse, lately sprung up in America," being awarded to the authoress. Besides her literary deservings, Mrs. Bradstreet appears to have been a loveable and excellent woman. Both her father and her husband became Gcvernors of Massachusetts. After her death, the latter married again; and, living not much less than a century, was termed "the Nestor of New England." Many of Mrs. Bradstreet's descendants -among them the poet Dana-have been distinguished for ability.]
ELEGY ON A GRANDCHILD.
FAREWELL, dear child, my heart's too much content,
Farewell, sweet babe, the pleasure of mine eye;
Blest babe, why should I once bewail thy fate,
By Nature trees do rot when they are grown,
And buds new-blown to have so short a date,
Is by His hand alone that Nature guides, and Fate.
TO HER HUSBAND:
WRITTEN IN THE PROSPECT OF DEATH.
How soon, my dear, death may my steps attend,
Let that live freshly in my memory.
And when thou feel'st no grief, as I no harms,
[Born in 1779, died in 1843. Known principally as a painter. His longest poem is named The Sylphs of the Seasons, published in 1813].
"Он pour upon my soul again
That sad, unearthly strain,
That seems from other worlds to plain;
As if some melancholy star
Had mingled with her light her sighs,
And dropped them from the skies.
"No-never came from aught below
That makes my heart to overflow
"For all I see around me wears
And something blent of smiles and tears.
So, at that dreamy hour of day
First fell the strain of him who stole
In music to her soul.
[Born in 1785, died towards 1865.1 Served as a Unitarian minister from 1819 to 1856. His principal poem is The Airs of Palestine, published in 1816].
FOR THE CHARLESTOWN CENTENNIAL
Two hundred years! two hundred years!
The red man at his horrid rite,
Seen by the stars at night's cold noon;
Left on the wave beneath the moon;
His dance, his yell, his council-fire,
And that pale pilgrim band is gone
That on this shore with trembling trod,
The ark of freedom and of God.
And war-that since o'er ocean came,
Chief, sachem, sage, bards, heroes, seers,
Has raised, and shown, and swept along.
1 In this and some other cases, where I say "towards" such a year as the date of death, I have reason to infer that the authors were alive in 1863, but have died since then, though the precise year of death is uncertain to me. I name 1865, as an approximation, in each instance.
'Tis like a dream when one awakes,
Then what are we? then what are we?
Yes, when two hundred years have rolled
God of our fathers, in whose sight
Are but the break and close of day
Grant us that love of truth sublime,
THE EXILE AT REST.
HIS falchion flashed along the Nile;
Here sleeps he now alone: not one
Of all the kings whose crowns he gave,
Nor sire nor brother, wife nor son,
Hath ever seen or sought his grave.
Here sleeps he now alone; the star
That led him on from crown to crown
Hath sunk; the nations from afar
Gazed as it faded and went down.
He sleeps alone: the mountain cloud
That night hangs round him, and the breath
Of morning scatters, is the shroud
That wraps his mortal form in death.