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O'er its yet but leaflet greening boughs,
The apricot open its blossom throws;
The delicate peach-tree's branches run
O’er the warm wall, glad to feel the sun ;
And the cherry proclaims of cloudless weather,
When its fruit and the blackbirds will toy together.
See, the gooseberry bushes their riches show,
And the currant bush hangs its leaves below,
And the damp-loving rasp saith, “I'll win your
With my grateful coolness on harvest days.
Come hither, come hither, and guess with me,
How fair and how fruitful the year will be!
Look into the pasture-grounds o'er the pale,
And behold the foal with its switching tail ;
About and abroad, in its mirth it flies,
With its long black forelocks about its eyes ;
Or bends its neck down with a stretch,
The daisy's earliest flowers to reach.
See, as on by the hawthorn's fence we pass,
How the sheep are nibbling the tender grass,
Or holding their heads to the sunny ray,
As if their hearts, like its smile, were gay ;
While the chattering sparrows, in and out,
Fly the shrubs, and the trees, and the roofs about ;
And sooty rooks, loudly cawing, roam,
With sticks and straws, to their woodland home.
Out upon in-door cares - rejoice
In the thrill of Nature's bewitching voice!
The finger of God hath touched the sky,
And the clouds, like a vanquish'd army, fly,
Leaving a rich, wide, azure bow,
O’erspanning the works of His hand below :
The finger of God hath touch'd the earth,
And it starts from slumber in smiling mirth ;
Behold it awake in the bird and the bee,
In the springing flower, and the sprouting tree,
And the leaping trout, and the lisping stream,
And the south wind soft, and the warm sun-
From the sward beneath, and the boughs above,
Come the scent of flowers, and the sound of love;
Then haste thee hither, and join thy voice,
With a world's, which shouts, "Rejoice! rejoice!”
WITH seemliest dirge to soothe thine ear,
If yet thy spirit hover near,
No melancholy verse,
O Nelson, shall the generous muse,
No trophies of sad import choose,
To hang thy laureate hearse !
I mourn thee not: tho' short the day,
Circled by glory's brightest ray,
Thy giant course was run;
And Victory her sweetest smile
Reserv'd, to bless thy evening toil,
And gild thy setting sun.
If mighty nations' hosts subdued ;
If, 'mid the wasteful scene of blood,
Fair deeds of mercy wrought;
If thy fond country's joint acclaim ;
If Europe's blessing on thy name
Be bliss, I mourn thee not.
That name from Indian Cuba sounds
To grateful Naples' oliv'd mounds,
And Ten’riffe's mountain isle ;
That name the thund'ring Baltic roars,
And Freedom hails on Egypt's shores
The Hero of the Nile.
Oft as Britannia's navies ride,
Where from old Ocean's straiten'd tide
Thy cliffs, Gibraltar, swell;
That name shall fill th' impassion'd thought,
And fond remembrance point the spot,
Where Nelson, conq'ring, fell.
His deeds shall veteran valour speak,
And beardless youth with kindling cheek
Burn at the wond'rous tale ;
The theme shall piety pursue,
And, as she bids the sea-worn crew
His nobler virtues hail,
Show how in conquest's dazzling hour
He bow'd before that unseen Pow'r,
By whom the fight is won;
Serenely how he smild in death,
And pray'd, with calm expiring breath,
“O God, thy will be done!”
O READER! hast thou ever stood to see
The Holly Tree?
The eye that contemplates it well perceives
Its glossy leaves
Order'd by an intelligence so wise,
As might confound the atheist's sophistries.
Below, a circling fence, its leaves are seen
Wrinkled and keen; No grazing cattle through their prickly round
Can reach to wound; But as they grow where nothing is to fear, Smooth and unarm'd the pointless leaves appear.
I love to view these things with curious eyes,
And moralise ;
And in this wisdom of the Holly Tree
Can emblems see
Wherewith perchance to make a pleasant rhyme,
One which may profit in the after-time.
Thus, though abroad perchance I might appear
Harsh and austere,
To those who on my leisure would intrude
Resery'd and rude,
Gentle at home amid my friends I'd be,
Like the high leaves upon the Holly Tree.
And should my youth, as youth is apt, I know,
Some harshness show,
All vain asperities I day by day
Would wear away.
Till the smooth temper of my age should be
Like the high leaves upon the Holly Tree.
And as when all the summer trees are seen
So bright and green,
The Holly leaves their fadeless hues display
Less bright than they;
But when the bare and wintry woods we see,
What then so cheerful as the Holly Tree?
So serious should my youth appear among
The thoughtless throng, So would I seem amid the
More grave than they,
That in my age as cheerful I might be
As the green winter of the Holly Tre
It was an hour of universal joy.
The lark was up and at the gate of heaven,
Singing, as sure to enter when he came;
The butterfly was basking in my path,
His radiant wings unfolded. From below
The bell of prayer rose slowly, plaintively;
And odours, such as welcome in the day,
Such as salute the early traveller,
And come and go, each sweeter than the last,
Were rising. Hill and valley breath'd delight;
And not a living thing but bless'd the hour!
In every bush and brake there was a voice
A noble peasant, Isaac Ashford, died.
Noble he was, contemning all things mean,
His truth unquestion'd, and his soul serene:
Of no man's presence Isaac felt afraid ;
At no man's question Isaac look'd dismay'd :
Shame knew him not, he dreaded no disgrace;
Truth, simple truth, was written in his face;