Page images
[blocks in formation]

would say that we mean to contend for that prize, and to secure the orchards and gardens by protecting the birds, and offering a handsome bounty for the ears of those who shoot them.

7. Kalm' tells us, that the planters in Virginia succeeded, at last, by legislative’ enactments, in exterminating* the little crow, and exulted much on the occasion. But it was not long before their triumph was changed to mourning. They found that the acts had been passed for the benefit of insects, not their own, and they would gladly have offered a larger bounty to bring back the persecuted birds.

8. We shall not plead for the crow, who is fully able to take care of himself; but we must file a protest against the practice of destroying the birds of the garden, for, besides depriving us of the beauty of their appearance and the music of their song, it lets in a flood of insects, whose numbers the birds were commissioned to keep down; and, when we find this evil growing year by year, as most assuredly it will, there will be little consolation in reflecting, that we have brought it upon ourselves.

9. The song of birds is not much better known than their habits and persons. How many have ever seen the crimson linnet, as he sits playing the flute on the věry summit of the lõftièst tree, sometimes diminishing his strain almost to silence, then pouring it out in bursts of rapture ?

10. It is common to say that beauty of plumage and sweetness of sõng are not found together. It may be true that they are seldom united in the highest perfection; but every child knows, that the clear piping of the baltimore and the varied whistle of the goldfinch are as pleasant to the ear as their fine colors are to the eye ; and the brilliant red-bird, which sometimes visits New England, is not more distinguished for the bright scarlet of his dress than for the sweet and bold expression of his song.

11. There is so much that inspires curiosity about the various

'Peter Kalm, a Swedish natur- 3 En ăct' ment, the passing of a alist, author of “ A Naturalist's Tour a bill into a law ; decree ; law. in North America,” lived between Ex ter' min āting, destroying; 1715 and 1779.

putting an end to. a Legislative, (led' jis lā'tiv), be. "Prõ'test, remonstrance; a solemn longing or relating to the making declaration of opinion against what of laws.

we do not wish.

tribes of birds, that it is difficult to account for this contented ignorance of their ways, in which so many spend their lives. When the snows retreat to the mountains, the friendly voice of the robin, telling us that he is glad to see us again, has a magical' effect upon every one ; it calls the heart and memory into action, and reminds us of all we love to remember.

12. Here he is again, but he can not tell us where he has been ; what regions he has traversed, nor what invisible' hand pointed out his path in the sky. If this inqui'ry in'terest us, we begin to look about us in the closing year: we see that, when the leaf grows red, the birds are disappearing, --some assembling in solenın deliberation, to make arrangements for the purpose ; others taking French leave, as it is unfitly called, without ceremony or farewell.


THIS is the bird that sweeps o’er the sea

1 Fearless, and rapid, and strong is he ;
He never forsakes the billowy röar
To dwell in calm on the tranquil' shõre,
Save when his mate from the tempest's shocks

Protects her young in the splinter'd rocks.
2. Birds of the sea, they rejoice in storms; -

On the top of the wave you may see their forms;
They run and dive, and they whirl and fly,
Where the glittering foam-spray breaks on high ;
And against the force of the strongest gale,

Like phantom ships, they soar and sail.
3. All over the ocean, far from land,

When the storm-king rises, dark and grand, Magical, (måj'ik al), mysterious; for and against a measure or choice; seemingly performed by something careful consideration. beyond nature.

4 Tranquil, (trångk' wil), quiet; ? In vỉs' ï ble, unseen; not capa. calm ; peaceful. ble of being seen.

• Phăn' tom, that which has only De lib'er a' tion, the act of an apparent existence; like an appaweighing and examining the reasons rition ; ghost!y.


The măriner' sees the pětrel meet
The fathomless waves with steady feet,
And a tireless wing and a dauntless breast,

Without a home or a hope of rest. 4. So, mid the contest and toil of life,

My soul, when the billows of rage and strife
Are tõssing high, and the heavenly blue
Is shrouded by vapors of somber hue-
Like the pětrel, wheeling o'er foam and spray,
Onward and upward pursue thy way!



M HE falcon' is a noble bird,

1 And when his heart of hearts is stirr'd,
He'll seek the eagle, though he run
Into his chămber near the sun.
Never was there brute or bird,
Whom the woods or mountains heard,
That could force a fear or care

From him, the Ar’ab of the air! 2. To-day he sits upon ă wrist,

Whose purple veins a queen has kiss'd,
And on him falls a sterner eye
Than he could face where'er he fly,
Though he scale the summit cold
Of the Grimsel," vast and old-
Though he search yõn sunless stream,

That threads the forest like a dream. 3. Ah! noble soldier! noble bird !

Will your names be ever heard
Ever seen in future story,
Crowning it with deathless glory?

1 Măr in er, seaman; sailor. which is often trained to catch other

? Făth' om less, that can not be birds, or game. fathomed, or sounded.

• Grịm' sel, a mountain of Swit * Falcon, (få kn), a bird of prey, zerland, 7126 feet above the sea.

Peace, ho! the master's eye is drawn
Away unto the bursting dawn!
Arise, thou bird of birds, arise,
And seek thy quarry' in the skies!


DIRD of the wilderness,

D Blithesome” and cumberlèss,'.
Sweet be thy matin* o’er moorland and lea!

Emblem of happiness,

Blest is thy dwelling-place-
O, to ăbide in the desert with thee!
2. Wild is thy lay, and loud,

Far in the downy cloud;
Love gives it energy-love gave it birth!

Where, on thy dewy wing

Where art thou journeying?
Thy lay is in heaven, thy love is on earth.
3. O'er fell’ and fountain sheen,

O’er moor and mountain green,
O’er the red streamer that heralds' the day;

Over the cloudlet dim,

Over the rainbow's rim,
Musical cherub, sõar, singing, ăwāy!

Then, when the gloaming comes,
Low in the hěafher blooms

Quarry, (kwór' ry), here means other thing in its leading qualities, game flown at by a hawk.

and so used to represent it. The 2 Blithesome, (bilfh' sům), gay; skylark is called the emblem of hap merry ; cheerful.

piness because it is so cheerful and * Cóm' ber less, without anxiety, joyous. care, or trouble.

? Fěll, a barren or stony hill; & * Mắt' in, a morning song. ridge or chain of hills.

6 Lêa, a meadow or grass land; 8 Sheen, light; splendor; great an extensive plain.

brightness. • Emblem, a type or figure; a Hěr' alds, proclaims; announces, thing thought to resemble some 0 Gloam' ing, twilight.

[merged small][ocr errors][merged small]

Sweet will thy welcome and bed of love be!

Emblem of happiness,

Blest is thy dwelling-place0, to abide in the desert with thee! JAMES HOGG.



THITHER, ʼmidst falling dew,

V While glow the heavens with the last steps of day,'
Far, through their rosy depths, dost thou pursue

Thy solitary way!
2. Vainly the fowler's eye
Might mark thy distant flight to do thee wrong,
As, darkly painted on the crimson sky,

Thy figure floats ålõng.
3. Seek’st thou the plashy brink
Of weedy lake, or marge of river wide,
Or where the rocking billows rise and sink

On the chafed ocean-side ?

4. There is a Power whose care
Teaches thy way ălòng that pathlèss coast,-
The desert and illimitable’ air, —

Lone wandering, but not lost.

5. All day thy wings have fanned,
At that far height, the cold, thin atmosphere;
Yet stoop not, weary, to the welcome land,

Though the dark night is near.

[ocr errors]

Steps of Day.The poet has rhetorical rule. The picture here sacrificed rhetorical rule to poetical presented of Day impressing his beauty in the second line of this ex- gorgeous colors, even with his very quisitely beautiful piece. Rhetor- footsteps, on the heavens, is more icians might, perhaps, ask how the grand and suggestive than any other "heavens" could gloro with a step. expression he could have used. But the true poet (and if ever there ? Il lim' it a ble, without limit or was a true poet, William Cullen measure ; not capable of being lim. Bryant is one) looks deeper than ited; boundless.

« PreviousContinue »