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FIFTH SECTION.

POETRY.

THE

'HE sentiments of poets are the sentiments of the human

heart, embodied into words by superior sensibility and genius; poetical ideas are the pure feelings of the soul, of which every one is conscious, but which few can express ; consequently every human being, endued with sensibility, and feeling, must be highly interested in, and greatly influenced by poetry.

There can be little doubt, that, if the works of the best poets were more generally studied and comprehended than they now are, the human character would not be so degraded by that callous coldness of heart, nor polluted by that vile vulgarity of vice, which, now, so often obtrude themselves upon our sight, in all the loathsomeness of their deformity ; because the sentiments to be found in those books, if they are felt and understood, raise the mind to such a state of pure and of pleasurable excitement, that it cannot, possibly, while under their influence, descend to the contaminating degradation of grovelling and sensual iniquity, or to the despicable meanness of pitiful chicanery and fraud. Let any one observe the movements of his heart, while he feels the thrill of sublime delight, or of pathetic emotion, excited by some of the strains of Burns, of Beattie, of Thomson, of Milton, or of Young, and he will find, that they are all tuned to benevolence, to affection, to gratitude, to love, and to adoration of him, who rideth upon the wings of the wind; and that no base, selfish, or unworthy sensation can find its way into a mind occupied by such noble and exalted views.

He who acquires an early habit of delighting in and of studying the best poets, will never know that fatal hour when his heart-chords shall cease to vibrate to the sweet impulses of benevolence and of kindness. The sentiments of the poets are the most exalted and the most dignified sentiments of humanity, arrayed in the splendid garb of language the most forcible and impressive ; whence all the emotions, which melt the glowing heart, or chain the soul in speechless pleasure, or dart rapture through each thrilling nerve, or raise the sigh. of sorrow, and bedew the cheek with pity's tear at the prayer of want, and the plaint of woe, or lift up the mind to all the elevated feelings, which adorn and ennoble man, which render him a blessing to his fellow-men, and a zealous, faithful servant

to his God, are called forth and roused into action, by the strains of our bards of higher fame.

“ Then hail, ye mighty masters of the lay,

Nature's true sons, the friends of man and truth!.
Whose song, sublimely bold, serenely gay,

Amus'd my childhood, and inform'd my youth.
0, let your spirit still my bosom sooth,

Inspire my dreams, and my wild wanderings guide!
Your voice each rugged path of life can smoothe,

For, well I know, wherever ye reside,
There harmony, and peace, and innocence abide."-

Since such is the opinion, which we entertain of poetry, and of its beneficial effects, we shall always select from the communications of our correspondents, or from the best poets, which have adorned the republic of letters, those effusions, which have a direct tendency to inspire sentiments of magnanimity and of grandeur, tò breathe into the heart emotions, tender as the first smile of love, and pure as its noblest fires, to heighten the lustre of moral honour, to chasten the passions, and to invigorate the understanding. The selection for this month, is follows:

as

BLINDNESS.

1
“ Ah! think, if June's delicious rays

The eye of sorrow can illume,
Or wild December's beamless days

Can fling o'er all a transient gloom.
Ah! think, if skies obscure, or bright,

Can, thus, depress, or cheer the mind;
Ah! think, 'midst clouds of utter night,
What mournful moments wait the blind.

2
66 And who shall tell his cause of woe,

To love the wife he ne'er must see ;
To be a sire, yet not to know

The silent babe, that climbs his knee.
To have his feelings daily torn,

With pain the passing meal to find?
To live distress'd and die forlorn,

Are ills that oft await the blind.

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1

3
“ When to the breezy uplands led,

At noon, or blushing eve, or morn,
He hears the red-breast o'er his head,

While round him breathes the scented thorn.
But, ah! instead of Nature's face,

Hills, dales, and woods, and streams combin'd,
Instead of tints, and forms, and grace,
Night's blackest mantle shrouds the blind.

4
“If rosy youth, bereft of sight,

'Midst countless thousands pines unblest,
As the gay flower, withdrawn from light,

Bows to the earth, where all must rest.
Oh! think, when life's declining hours

To chilling penury are consign'd,
And pain has palsied all his pow'rs,

Oh! think what woes await the blind.".

WOMAN.

1
“ Let the hawk shew his wing, and each warbler shall cease,
Let the north keenly rage, and each flow’ret shall close,
Yet woman, sweet woman, more simple than these,
Oft looks for protection to merciless foes,
Oh! may she, when lovers with fervency plead,
All their glances, their sighs, and their vows disbelieve ;
And if whinings and oaths to their flattery succeed;
Oh! may she reflect, that e'en these can deceive !

2
“ The dolphin, pursuing his swift-flying prey,
Shews a thousand rich tints, which before were unseen ;
So in love's glowing chace woman's foes oft display
New ardors of mind, and new graces of mien ;
But, yet, when new ardors, new graces arise,
New arts are contrived to allure and enslave,
And passion a path-way of roses supplies,
O’er which the poor female oft trips to her grave.

VOL. I.

3
« The man, who in dealing with man is correct,
In dealing with woman a traitor shall prove;
Shall attempt to seduce, where he ought to protect,
And blast with his sighs the sweet blossoms of love ;
Then be firm, oh ye maids! and the bold still repel,
And with keen circumspection the artful disarm;
For man is a rattle-snake wily and fell,
And you, the poor birds, oft destroy'd by his charm!"

DANGER.

High o'er the headlong torrent's foamy fall, Whose waters howl along the rugged steep, On the loose jutting rock, or mouldering wall, See where gaunt danger lays him down to sleep; The piping winds his mournful vigils keep; The lightnings blue his stony pillow warm ; Anon incumbent o’er the dreary deep, The fiend enormous strides the labouring storm, And 'mid the thunderous strife expands his giant form."

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RETIREMENT.

1
« When in the crimson cloud of even
The lingering light decays,
And Hesper on the front of heaven
His glittering gem displays;
Deep in the silent vale unseen,
Beside a lulling stream,
A pensive youth, of placid mein,
Indulg'd this tender theme.

2
“ Ye cliffs, in hoary grandeur pil'd
High o'er the glimmering dale;
Ye woods along whose windings wild
Murmurs the solemn gale ;
Where Melancholy strays forlorn,
And Woe retires to weep,

What time the wan moon's yellow horn
Gleams on the Western deep :

3
« To you, ye wastes, whose artless charms
Ne'er drew Ambition's eye,
Scap'd a tumultuous world's alarms,
To your retreats I fly.
Deep, in your most sequester'd bower,
Let me, at last recline,
Where Solitude, mild, modest power,
Leans on her ivy'd shrine.

4
.6 How shall I woo thee, matchless fair?
Thy heavenly smile how win?
Thy smile, that smooths the brow of care,
And stills the storm within.
O wilt thou to thy favourite grove,
Thine ardent votary bring,
And bless his hours, and bid them move
Serene on silent wing?

5
.“ Oft let remembrance sooth his mind
With dreams of former days,
When in the lap of peace reclin'd
He fram'd his infant lays;
When fancy rov'd at large, nor care,
Nor cold distrust alarm'd;
Nor envy with malignant glare,
His simple youth had harm’d.

6
6'Twas then, 0 Solitude ! to thee
His early vows were paid,
From heart sincere, and warm and free,
Devoted to the shade.
Ah! why did Fate his steps decoy
In stormy paths to roam,
Remote from all congenial joy?
O take the Wanderer home!

7
“Thy shades, thy silence, now be mine,
Thy charms my only theme;

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