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As insect-myriads in the sunset air.
In such a scene
[LIGHTS AND SHADOWS.]
Now on the vessel's deck,
Too richly on some regal garment wrought.-
Behold that bridge of clouds ! Upraised beyond, an air-wrought precipice Appears stream-mantled, -kindled vapours form The radiant torrent, touched with every tint That mingles on the vest of parting day. Beneath that shadowy bridge the broad red sun, Its outline undefined, continues still The same celestial flood, that downward dashed Breaks into fiery foam !
That scene is o'erThe hill, the bridge, the stream have passed away! The sun hath changed its hue, and now presents A silvery globe, floating on fervid skies That gleam like seas of gold. Its glorious disk As if with insect-clouds thin speckled seems, Yet glitters on the burning front of heaven, Bright as a crystal spar, or quivering wave Beneath the glare of noon!
[SIA-Foam.] The brecze is gentle, yet the gliding ship Wins not her tranquil way without a trace, But softly stirs the surface of the sea. "Tis pleasant now, with vacant mind, to watch The light foam at her side. Awhile it seems Most like a tattered robe of stainless white, Whose rents disclose a verdant vest beneath. Then, suddenly, wild Fancy wanders home For wintry images of snow-patched plains That prove a partial thaw. E'en school-days dear Return, if haply on the idle brain Remembrance of the pictured map presents The world's irregular bounds of land and wave! Nor less beguilement for the lingering hours Of life at sea, the backward track may yield. How beautiful the far seen wake appears ! Resplendent as the comet's fiery tail In Heaven's blue realms! Beneath the proud ship’s stern A thousand mimic whirlpools chafe and boil, While fitfully up-sent from lucid depths Thick throngs of silver bubbles sparkle bright, Like diamonds in the pale beam of the moon.
Ah! that once more I were a careless child.
Coleridge. He plays yet like a young prentice the first day, and is not come to his task of melancholy.
Every thing new or young has a charm for human eyes. The rosy light of dawn—the spring of the year—the haunts of our childhood-our earliest companions and our first amusements, are connected with associations infinitely more enchanting than all later scenes and objects. It is partly owing to this law of our nature, that the sight of children thrills and softens the heart in maturer life with such indescribable sensations of sadness and delight. They remind us of our sweetest hours, revive our most hallowed affections, and bring into our eyes those tears of luxurious tenderness that are more precious than springs in a sandy desert. At the pure smile of childhood the baser impulses and more sordid cares of life suddenly betray their genuine aspects of deformity, and vanish from the heart. change comes over the spirit of our dreams.”
All men of sensibility and imagination, occasionally travel back through the mist of dreams to the scenes of their own happy childhood. The fondly reverted eye is charmed with images of peace and beauty. When contrasted with these delightful retrospections, how dreary and barren seems our onward path! Every step that we take but increases our distance from the regions of enchantment. 'Tis a melancholy journey into unknown landsan eternal exile from the home of innocence and joy. The atmosphere of existence thickens as we advance, and all things assume a sombre aspect, till at last we reach the dread goal of our Suffer,” says
earthly pilgrimage, the Poison Tree of death, and are so weary and wayworn that we even welcome its horrid silence and its hideous shade.
If men may dare to idolize any sublunary thing, it is a sinless and smiling child.
Jesus Christ,“ little children to come unto me, and forbid them not, for of such is the kingdom of heaven." The author of these beautiful words was an infant himself, and oh, ineffable glory! the pure light that encircled the child, still shone around the man! It is a touching, and I hope not an irreverent reflection, that he whose manhood surpassed all human conceptions-he whom men believe to have been the Deity himself—did not, in his earlier years, exhibit to earthly eyes more innocence and beauty than are easily conceivable in a human child. Could we but preserve our first purity with the progress of our intellectual powers, we should indeed be little lower than the angels. The description of our first parents in Paradise is like a radiant vision, but I cannot help regarding it, beautiful as it is, as in some degree deficient in poetical and human interest, when I remember that they knew not the charms of childhood, but came abruptly, I had almost said unnaturally, into mature existence unaccompanied by those earlier associations which like the shadows in the golden light of evening, grow more and more lovely as our day declines, and reflect their lingering hues upon our latest path. Methinks that even Paradise itself would have looked more divine, had little human cherubim flitted gaily over the green velvet slopes, and passed from flower to flower, their light laughs breaking like celestial music on the air, and their golden locks glittering in the sun.
A lovely woman is an object irresistibly enchanting, and the austerer grace of manhood fills the soul with a proud sense of the majesty of human nature; but there is something far less earthly and more intimately allied to our holiest imaginings in the purity of a child. It satisfies the most delicate fancy and the