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known writer, which that writer is fearful of claiming for himself.

When this volume first came into our hands, we will frankly own we felt an unwillingness to review it, since, while from what we had heard of Lady Flora Hastings, we were well assured that her poems would be characterized by high moral feeling, and a certain gracefulness of style, the natural result of an accomplished mind, we had no reason to think that we should find anything more than that common iteration of commonplace thought which seems to be the peculiar feature (with but trifling exceptions) of our aristocratic poetry.

How was it, then, that at a time when Lady Blessington and Lady Charlotte Bury were 'coming out' with something new every quarter, no one ever heard of Poems by the Lady Flora

Hastings ?' How was it that in that receptacle for even the 'smallest contributions' of right honorables, the Keepsake,' not a single copy of verses by the daughter of one of our most illustrious nobles, Lord Moira, the friend of poets, ever found a place? When we remembered how fashionable an accomplishment is verse making, and how very moderate a degree of talent is required by fashionable critics, we really feared that sisterly admiration had prevailed over a more sober judgment, and had prompted the affectionate editress, as is too often the case, to offer to the broad glare of the world, compositions only fitted for the gentle light of the family fireside. With these thoughts we opened the elegant volume ; but with a surprise similar to that of Coleridge when he read the spirited lines of the Duchess of Devonshire on crossing Mont St. Gothard, did we read the following beautiful stanzas, nor could we help exclaiming with him—

O lady nursed in pomp and pleasure,

Where learnt you that heroic measure ?'
They are from a fragment entitled “ The Dying Sybil.'

· The child of rapture, all was bliss to me.
I loved to watch the brooding thunder-cloud
Casting its dark hues o'er the scenery,
And hear its voice, so awful and so loud.
Proudly I gazed and smiled while all the crowd,
With craven brow and eyes averted, turn'd;
And every trembling knee was lowly bow'd,
While I-the dastard fear indignant spurn'd,
And blessid the levin brand, even when it fiercest burn'd.
· And at the midnight hour I could descry
Fair forms, invisible to vulgar ken,
Moving athwart the star-bespangled sky-
Each form some bright orb's brighter denizen ;

And I have listen'd, till methought again
I heard the music of their silver lyres
Breathe through the woods, and wake the silent glen;
While yon blue vault, glowing with liquid fires,
Echo'd the music of those bright celestial choirs.
• All, all is beauty! from the smiling glade,
Or harvest, prompting the glad reaper's hymn,
To Scythian woods’ inhospitable shade,
Or Thracian mountain with dank

vapors dim.
For every scene alike, or gay or grim,
Reveals a tender Parent's guardian care :
Wood, mountain, vale, and river speak of Him ;
All climes, all nations in his bounty share;
His ear is bent alike to every suppliant's prayer.
· Is it not bliss, where'er the eye can rove,
To feel the hand of heaven ?-to find no spot,
No desert region, no sequester'd grove,
Where the Divinity inhabits not?
To feel, whate'er has been our wayward lot,
That still we hold communion with the Power
Whose word is fate ?-whose goodness ne'er forgot
The meanest insect of the summer hour,
Whose hand directs the sun, and paints the meadow's flower?'

- pp. 28, 29, 31, 32. How different is this from nine-tenths of the poetry which is heralded by pompous announcements, and which finds its place on every drawing-room table. The facility, too, with which the writer manages one of the most difficult, the most difficult, we had almost said,-metres in our language, without diffuseness on the one hand, or abruptness on the other, is singular. But not the least remarkable characteristic of the writer is, the extreme facility with which she seems to have composed not only in almost every metre, but in almost every style. How condensed is the following poem, although written in a measure which, from its peculiar easiness, is scarcely ever free from redundancy.


* Around our globe with ceaseless flight
Move the twin sisters, Day and Night;
Intent to bear to every clime
The mandates of their father, Time ;
And pour with equal-handed grace
His blessings on the human race.
Day bathes the earth in dews of light,
Night brings its visions yet more bright.

The op’ning flower, the wild bird's song,
To Day, glad joyous Day, belong;
While Night, with step more staid and calm,
Brings slumber's soft Lethean balm.
When day hath suffer'd aught of care,
Night sheds her soothing poppies there ;
If Night hath brought us aught of sorrow,
Day shall lead on a brighter morrow.
When Time's allotted course is done,
His wings unplumed, his hour-glass run,
May Day be merged in brighter day,
And fade in heaven's own light away ;
And all Night's fairest visions be

Changed to more bless'd reality !-pp. 211, 212.
The following, too, in a different metre, presents the same
severe simplicity, the same beautiful condensation of style.
What single word in either of them could be omitted ?

Soft glowing in uncertain birth
"Twixt Nature's smiles and tears,
The Bow, O Lord ! which Thou hast bent,
Bright in the cloud appears.
The portal of thy dwelling-place

arch seems to be,
And, as I bless its mystic light,
My spirit turns to Thee,
• Thus, gleaming o'er a guilty world,
We hail the ray of love;
Thus dawns upon the contrite soul
Thy mercy from above ;
And as Thy faithful promise speaks
Repentant sin forgiven,
In humble hope we bless the beam
That points the way to heaven.'—pp. 45, 46.

From these two specimens we should think Lady Flora Hastings was an admirer of the Italian school of poetry, for, strange as it may appear to those of our readers who are but superficially acquainted with Italian literature, we can assure them that its poetry is remarkable for its condensation. That a contrary opinion has prevailed among those who are only conversant with Italian poetry through the medium of translations may be readily accounted for by the fact, that from the reign of James the First to comparatively yesterday, Italian literature was not merely neglected, but scorned. Addison led the way, and in his ridicule of the Italian opera, consigned the literature which boasted a Dante, a Petrarch, an Ariosto, and a Tasso, to the contempt of Englishmen. Pope followed; nor was it wonderful that a poet who could praise

• Exact Corneille, and Racine's noble fire,' had no sympathy with those who wandered amid fairy land, or with him, the mightiest of modern poets, who made

• Both heaven and hell co-partners of his toil;' and when, toward the close of the last century, a taste for Italian literature began to show itself, a frivolous age contented itself with admiring and translating the feeble elegancies of Metastasio, while the magnificent poems of an earlier day were left unheeded, probably because not understood.

But not merely does Lady Flora Hastings appear well versed in Italian literature, she has given in this volume a noble specimen of her knowledge of German literature, in her translation of Schiller’s mystical and wild, but splendid Song of the Bell.” We regret that we cannot give an extract, since it would illustrate the peculiar character of German poetry; but such compositions cannot be appreciated piecemeal, and much disadvantage have German writers sustained from their works being presented in detached extracts.

The following is a noble poem, and we must give it entire. Seldom has that motto received a more beautiful illustration.

Conquer in this !'- Not unto thee alone

The vision spake, imperial Constantine !
Nor, presage only of an earthly throne,

Blazed in mid-heaven the consecrated sign.
Through the unmeasured tract of coming time

mystic cross doth with soft lustre glow,
And speaks through every age,


To every

slave of sin and child of woe.
• Conquer in this ! -Aye, when the rebel heart

Clings to the idols it was wont to cherish,
And, as it sees those fleeting boons depart,

Grieveth that things so bright were form’d to perish.
Arise, bereav'd one! and, athwart the gloom,

Read in the brightness of that cheering ray-
• Mourn not, O Christian ! though so brief their bloom,

Nought that is worth a sigh shall pass away.'
Conquer in this !'—When fairest visions come

To lure thy spirit to a path of flowers ;
Binding the exile from a heavenly home,

To dwell a lingerer in unholy bowers :

Strong in His strength who burst the bonds of sin,

Clasp to thy bosom, clasp the holy cross !
Dost thou not seek a heavenly crown to win?

Hast thou not counted all beside as loss ?
Conquer in this ?'—Though powers of earth and hell

Were leagued to bar thee from thy homeward way,
The cross shall every darkling shade dispel,

Chase every doubt, and re-assure dismay.
Faint not, O wearied one : faint not : for thee

The Lord of Righteousness and Glory bled,
And his good Spirit's influence, with free

And plenteous unction, is upon thee shed.
• Conquer in this !'- When, by thy fever'd bed,

Thou see'st the dark-wing'd angel take his stand,
Who soon shall lay thy body with the dead,

And bear thy spirit to the spirit's land :
Fear not ! the cross sustains thee, and its aid

In that last trial shall thy succour bring;
Go fearless through the dark, the untried shade,

For sin is vanquish'd, and death hath no sting.
• Conquer in this !-Strong in thy Saviour's might,

When bursts the morning of a brighter day,
Rise, Christian victor in the glorious fight,

Arise, rejoicing, from thy cell of clay!
The cross, which led thee scatheless through the gloomy,

Shall in that hour heaven's royal banner be.
Thou hast o'ercome the world, the flesh, the tomb :
Triumph in Him who died and rose for thee !'

-Pp. 225—227.


The strongly religious tendency of many of these poems is very pleasing. We perceive that among the highest circles, and in close contact with royalty itself, the religion that

willeth that all men should be saved,' has lifted up her voice, and not in vain; and when we find in the poems of a lady in immediate attendance on the mother of our sovereign, so many allusions, not merely to religion generally, but to those peculiar doctrines which fashionable literature and fashionable writers would scout as puritanical or methodistical, we rejoice, for it proves to us the spread of religious principles in a sphere which we have been perhaps too long accustomed to consider as almost beyond their influence. In selecting from these interesting poems,

it is difficult to determine which to leave out; we have, however, almost exceeded our limits, and recommending this elegant volume to our readers, we will conclude with the following beautiful lines, which seem to have been written by this gifted lady almost as a prophecy of her own fate-

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