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The Daughter’s Dream—Nature’s Teacher.
When I was a child I knew an old gray headed man. Age had given him wisdom, and I loved him, for he was kind as well as wise. Once he said to me, “I know a way to be happy.” “Who taught it to you!” I inquired. And he answered, “I learnt it in the fields.” Then I drew near and entreated him to teach it to me also. But he replied, “go forth unto the fields, among the living things, and learn it for thyself.”
So I went forth and looked attentively upon all that was moving around. But novoice spoke to me. Then I returned to the gray
headed man. And when he asked “what hast thou seen in the fields!” I answered: “I saw the brook flowing on, among sweet flowers. It seemed to sing a merry song. I listened, but there were no words to the music. The sparrow flew by me with down in her beak, wherewith to line her nest, and the red breast with a crumb she had gathered at the door to feed her chirping young. The ducklings swam beside their mother in the clear stream, and the hen drew her chickens under her wings and screamed at the soaring hawk. The spider threw out her many threads like lines of silver, and, fastening them from spray to spray, ran lightly on the bridge made from her own body. The snail put his head through the door of his shell, and drew it suddenly back. The ant carried a grain of corn in her pincers, and the loaded bee hastened to her hive, like a laborer to his cottage. The dog came forth and guarded the young lambs, frisking fearlessly by the side of their serious mother, who cropped the tender grass. All seemed full of happiness. I asked them how I also should be happy.— But they made me no reply. Again and again I asked, ‘who will teach me to be happy!” Yet nothing answered, save the echo, ever repeating my last words, “happy—happy,' but not to tell me how to become so.” “Hast thou looked upon all these, young man,” said the aged, “yet received no instruction | Did not the brook tell thee that it might not stay to be idle, that it must be in haste to meet the river and go with that to the ocean to do the bidding of the ocean's king, and that it had pleasure by the way, in refreshing the trees that stretched their roots to meet it, and in giving drink to the flowers that passed down to its face with a kiss of gratitude! Thou did'st see the birds building their nests, or flying with food to their little ones; and could'st thou not perceive to make others happy is happiness. The young duck gave diligence to learn of its mother the true use of its oary feet, and how to balance its bo. aright in the deep water; and the chickens obeyed the warning to hide under the broad wing, though it knew not the cruelty cf the foe from which it fled. And did they not bid thee seek with the same obedience the lessons of thy mother, who every day teacheth thee, and every night lifts up her prayer that thy soul may avoid the destroyer and live forever? When the spider's silken bower was swept away, and she began another without ill-temper or complaint, and the snail willingly put forth all her strength to carry her house upon her back, and the ant toiled with her load of corn to her winter store-house, and the bee wasted not the smallest drop of sweetness that could be found in the honey cup—came there no voice to thee from their example of pa114
The Tulip and the Eglantine–Guardian Angels. Vol. II.
tience, prudence and wisdom | Thou didst admire the shepherd's dog, minding so readily the word of his master, but failed to understand that faithful continuance in duty is happiness. From all these teachers of the field came there no precept unto thee! When they all spake with different voices wert thou deaf to their instruction! Each in his own language told thee that industry was happiness, and that idleness was an offence both to nature and to her God!” Then I bowed down my head, and my cheek was crimsoned with shame, because I had not understood the lessons of the fields, and was ignorant of what even birds and insects knew. But the man with hoary hairs smiled on me and comforted me. So I thanked him for the good teachings of his wisdom. And I took his precept into my heart that I might weigh it and see if it were true. And though I was then young and am now old, I have never had reason to doubt that industry is happiness. =
THE TULIP AND THE EGLANTINE. BY MRS. SIGOURNEY.
The Tulip called to the Eglantine,
“It may be so,” said the Eglantine,
G U A R D I A N A N G E L S.
“Therefore for spirits, I am so far from denying their existence, that I could easily believe that not only whole countries, but particularly persons have their guardian and tutelary angels.”—Religo Medici. It is one of the most beautiful doctrines ever inculcated, that “there are noble essences in heaven,” that bear a friendly regard unto their friendly natures on the earth. And although it may be naught but a dazzling error, yet, mankind might be pardoned for cheating themselves with so agreeable a delusion. It is, indeed, one of the finest ideas ever conceived, that man is not placed here in entire reliance upon his strength, a poor, forlorn wanderer, with no guide, save the suggestions of his own corrupt nature—but that there is ever near him a guardian spirit,
whose kindly counsels attend him on his pilgrimage. }. argument for such a theory seems, at least, very plausible—and if there is a gradual scale of ascension in the order of being, from brutes to angels, such an essence as we speak of may form a connecting link. And who shall say that such things do not exist? that they are not one of the thousand mysteries which envelope our being?— Life itself is a wonder, full of inexplicable mysteries. Our very existence is an enigma. And who shall fathom the immortal soul?— Who shall resolve its sympathies, and trace home its mysterious connexion with the body! Since, then, our nature and being are so inseparable, is the theory we are considering so startling to reason? Surely, if Dr. Johnson, Sir Thomas Browne, and other great and wise men, have believed in the appearance of ghosts, apparitions, and other strange sights, we may indulge a belief so fraught with pleasure and consolation. Of the same nature, and equally sublime, is the doctrine that the departed spirits of our friends and relatives are permitted to revisit the earth, and to mingle their sympathies with the objects of their affection. When we think of the anguish of parting with those we love, of looking for the last time upon the face which has smiled away our woes, how gladly do we cling to the idea of their returning to soothe our distress, and to lend their invisible influence to bind up the bruised heart! Such a belief would soften the bitterness of sepa-, ration, and beguile death of its sting. It is indeed a painful thought that the forms which have insensibly entwined themselves about us until they have become linked with our being, must be torn away and wedded with the dust—that the eye which beams upon us with tenderness unutterable, must become dim in death, and the voice whose music hath so oft stilled the aching heart, must falter its last farewell. But more chilling is the thought, that the loves and friendships, and all the other endearments which lent a charm to existence, must perish with the heart's last throb. But if thou carst believe that the love once so fond faded not with life's taper, but e'en now “softly trembles with a pulse as true as thine;” that the friend once so warm and pure is still sympathizing in thy joys and woes, cling to the hope, woo it to thy soul, phantom though it may be. Art thouan orphan, weeping for an affectionate parent dry the tear—bush the sobbings of thy young heart. She whose love thou thoughtst lost to thee forever, thy fond mother is still near thee, watching thine every step with an affection that never slumbers—whispering words of consolation in thine ear and smoothing thy rugged path. Art thou a husband, whose widowed heart is lamenting the tender part. 115
No. 5. Creation and Redemption—off Sister—Sonnet—Farewell.
ner of thy bosom! Cease thy complaint.— The love e'en here so pure, now etherealized and freed from all earthly alloy, is with thee in thy wanderings. List what it says:
* Near thee, still near thee! trust thy soul's deep dreaming ! Oh! love is not an earthly rose to die! Even when I soar where fiery stars are beaming, Thine image wanders with me through the sky.”
Gentle shades! Forms unsecn' Even while I write at this still and solemn hour of midnight, perhaps ye are hovering, with untired wing, o'er the slumbers of the loved—whis
pering words of peace to the mourner, or in ||
dreams, restoring the objects of his idolizing affections—telling the joys of a better land, where love and friendship bloom fadeless, and part no more for ever!
He who has never known a sister's kind ministration, nor felt his heart warming beneath her endearing smile and love beaming eye, has been unfortunate indeed. It is not to be wondered if the fountains of pure feeling flow in his bosom but sluggishly, or if the gentle emotions of his nature be lost in the sterner attributes of mankind.
“That man has grown up among kind, af. fectionate sisters,” I once heard a lady of much observation and experience remark.
“And why do you think so?” said I.
“Because of the rich developement of all the tender feelings of the heart.”
A sister's influence is felt, even in manhood's riper years, and the heart of him who has grown cold in its chilly contact with the world—will warm and thrill with pure enjoyment, as some incident awakens within him the soft tones, and glad melodies of his sister's voice; and he will turn from purposes which a warped and false philosophy . soned into expediency, and even weep for the gentler influences which moved him in his earlier years.
The Park and City Hall, New York—Sonnet.
THE PARK AND CITY HALL,
The first Stadt Huys in this city was con. structed of stone, and stood originally at the head of Coenties Slip, facing on Pearl street, towards the east river. It was built as early in the Dutch dynasty as 1642, and became so weakened and impaired in half a century af. terwards, that the court sitting there recommended it to be sold, and another, to be constructed. In 1699, they sold the old building for nine hundred and twenty pounds, “reserving only the bell, the king's arms, and iron works (fetters) belonging to the prison.” . By the agreement, leave was granted “that the cage, pillory, and stocks,before the same,be removed any time within one year, and the prisoners in the city hall to remain one month.” “In front of all these, on the river, was placed the Rondeal, or Half-moon Fort, where it propably assisted the party sheltered in the City Hall, while the civil war prevailed.” The new building must have been finished in 1700. It stood at the head of Broad street, fronting on Wall street; and its lower story formed an open arcade over the foot pavement. It was also the proper prison of the city,and had before it on Broad street, a whipping-post, pillory, &c. There were also held the sessions of the Provincial Assembly, the Supreme Court, and the Mayor and the Admiralty Courts. It was finally altered to suit the Congress; and at that time the prisoners were moved to the new jail in the park; but the Congress removing to Philadelphia, it was again altered to receive the Courts and the State Assembly. “ In was in the o of the old City Hall, on Wall street,” says Watson in his Annals, “that General Washington was inaugurated the first President of the United States, in the Senate Chamber, in view of an immense concourse of citizens. There this nobleman of nature, with his noble height and port, in a suit of dark silk velvet of the old cut, steel hilted small sword by his side, hair in bag and full powdered, in black silk hose, and shoes with silver buckles, made his pledge on a quarto bible, still preserved in St. John's Lodge. How uprightly, intelligently, and disinterestedly, he executed his task, history will never cease to tell to his fame and glory.” The present City Hall was erected in 1803, at an expense of half a million of dollars.The front and sides are constructed of white marble, and the remainder of red sandstone. It is a beautiful edifice, and only wants elevation. When the trees of the park are in full leaf, it is difficult to get an entire view of it. The park is the centre of New York, and its two most thronged and finest avenues form the two sides of it. Broadway, the much crowded and much praised Broadway, the
|Corso, the Toledo, the Regent street, of New York, pours its tide of population past the western side of the verdant triangle, and, just at the park its crowd and its bustle are thick|est. Broadway is a noble street, and on its broad side walks may be seen every thing that walks the world in the shape of a foreigner, or a fashion—beauties by the score, and men of business by the thousand.
It would be difficult in one day to describe the prevailing style of dress in Broadway, for fashions have become unfashionable, and each man and woman dresses as Fortune pleases. But here is a picture of dresses in Broadway a century ago:—“Men wore three-square, or cocked hats, and wigs; coats with large cuffs, and big skirts lined and stiffened with buckram. The coat of a beau had three or four plaits in the skirts, and wadding, like a coverlit, to keep them smooth. The cuffs were very large, up to the elbows, open below, and loaded with lead to keep them down. The cape was thin and low, so as readily to expose the close plaited neck stock of fine linen cambric, and the large silver stock buckle on the back of the neck. The skirts were worn with hand ruffles, and sleeve buttons were worn at the wrist, of precious stones, or gold. The little boys wore wigs, like their elders, and their dresses generally were similar to those of the men. Coats of red plush were very fashionable, and the breeches were commonly made of this material.” We refer the reader to Watson's Annals for many curious particulars touching the apparel, and habits of the New Yorkers, in the early part of the last century.
Forgive me if my melancholy lay
A few more years of mingled smiles and sighs
And be an angel in a tearless heaven L.
Doubt those who do not strictly comply with their engagements.
Before you give way to anger, try to find a reason for not being angry.