Page images

his worthy deeds alone, have rendered him immortal! When oblivion shall have swept away thrones, kingdoms, and principalities—when every vestige of human greatness, and grandeur, and glory, shall have moldered into dust, and the last period of time become extinct-eternity itself shall catch the glowing theme, and dwell with increasing rapture on his name !


DANIEL WEBSTER. I profess, sir, in my career hitherto, to have kept steadily in view the prosperity and honor of the whole country, and the preservation of our Federal Union. It is to that Union we owe our safety at home, and our consideration and dignity abroad. It is to that Union we are chiefly indebted for whatever makes us most proud of our country. That Union we reached only by the discipline of our virtues, in the severe school of adversity. It had its origin in the necessities of disordered finance, prostrate commerce, and ruined credit. Under its benign influences, these great interests immediately awoke, as from the dead, and sprang forth with newness of life. Every year of its duration has teemed with fresh proofs of its utility and its blessings; and although our territory has stretched out wider and wider, and our population spread farther and farther, they have not outrun its protection or its benefits. It has been to us all a copious fountain of national, social, personal happiness. I have not allowed myself, sir, to look beyond the Union, to see what might lie hidden in the dark recess behind. I have not coolly weighed the chances of preserving liberty when the bonds that unite us together shall be broken asunder. I have not accustomed myself to hang over the precipice of disunion, to see whether, with my short sight, I can fathom the depth of the abyss below; nor could I regard him as a safe counselor in the affairs of this Government whose thoughts should be mainly bent on considering, not how the Union should be best preserved, but how tolerable might be the condition of the people when it shall be broken up

and (lestroyed.

While the Union lasts, we have high, exciting, gratifying prospects spread out before us, for us and for our children. Beyond that I seek not to penetrate the veil. God grant that, in my day at least, that curtain may not rise ! God grant that on my vision never may be opened what lies behind! When

my eyes shall be turned to behold, for the last time, the sun in Heaven, may I not see him shining on the broken and dishonored fragments of a once glorious Union; on States, severed, discordant, belligerent: on a land rent with civil feuds, or drenched, it may be, in fraternal blood! Let their last feeble and lingering glance, rather, behold the gorgeous ensign of the Republic, now known and honored throughout the earth, still full high advanced, its arms and trophies streaming in their original lustre, not a stripe erased or polluted, nor a single star obscured, -bearing, for its motto, no such miserable interrogatory as “What is all this worth ?”—nor those other words of delusion and folly, “Liberty first and Union afterwards,"but everywhere, spread all over in characters of living light, blazing on all its ample folds, as they float over the sea and over the land, and in every wind under the whole heavens, that other sentiment, dear to every true American heartLiberty and Union, now and forever, one and inseparable!


We shall meet and rest:
Where the faded flower shall freshen,

Freshen never more to fade;
Where the shaded sky shall brighten,

Brighten never more to shade;
Where the sun-blaze never scorches;

Where the star-beams cease to chill;
Where no tempest stirs the echoes

Of the wood, or wave, or hill;
Where the morn shall wake in gladness,

And the noon the joy prolong;
Where the daylight dies in fragrance

'Mid the burst of holy song;
Where no shadow shall bewilder;

Where life's vain parade is o'er;
Where the sleep of sin is broken,

And the dreamer dreams no more;
Where the bond is never severed-

Partings, claspings, sob, and moan-
Midnight waking, twilight weeping,

Heavy noontide-all are done;
Where the child has found its mother,

Where the mother finds her child;
Where dear families are gathered

That were scattered on the wild;

Where the hidden wound is healed;

Where the blighted life reblooms;
Where the smitten heart the freshness

Of its buoyant youth resumes;
Where the love that here we lavish

On the withering leaves of time,
Shall have fadeless flowers to fix on,

In an ever spring-bright clime;
Where we find the joy of loving,

As we never loved before;
Loving on unchilled, unhindered,

Loving once, for evermore.

54. -ART THOU LIVING YET? Is there no grand, immortal sphere,

Beyond this realm of broken ties, To fill the wants that mock us here,

And dry the tears from weeping eyes ; Where Winter melts in endless Spring.

And June stands near with deathless flowers, Where we may hear the dear ones sing,

Who loved us in this world of ours ? I ask, and lo! my cheeks are wet

With tears for one I cannot see ; Oh, mother, art thou living yet,

And dost thou still remember me
I feel thy kisses o'er me thrill,

Thou unseen angel of my life;
I hear thy hymns around me thrill,

An undertone to care and strife ;
And tender eyes upon me shine,

As from a being glorified:
Till I am thine and thou art mine,

And I forget that thou hast died.
I almost lose each vain regret

In visions of a life to be ;
Oh, mother, art thou living yet,

And dost thou still remember me?
The Spring-times bloom, the Summers fade,

The Winters blow along my way,
But over every light and shade

Thy memory lives by night and day. It soothes to sleep my wildest pain,

Like some sweet song that cannot die; And like the murmur of the main,

Grows deeper when the storm is nigh.

I know the brightest stars that set

Return to bless the yearning sea;
My mother, art thou living yet,

And dost thou still remember me?
I sometimes think thy self comes back

From o'er the dark and silent stream,
Where last we watched thy silent track

To those green hills of which we dream ; Thy loving arms around me twine,

My cheeks bloom younger in thy breath, Till thou art mine and I am thine,

Without a thought of pain or death ; And yet, at times, mine eyes are wet

With tears for her I cannot see; Oh, mother, art thou living yet,

And dost thou still remember me?

55.-—"ROCK OF AGES.”

“Rock of Ages, cleft for me,”

Thoughtlessly the maiden sung,
Fell the words unconsciously

From her girlish, gleeful tongue,
Sung as little children sing,

Sung as sing the birds in June;
Fell the words like light leaves sown

On the current of the tune-
“Rock of Ages, cleft for me,
Let me hide myself in Thee.”
Felt her soul no need to hide-

Sweet the song as song could be,
And she had no thought beside;

All the words unheedingly
Fell from lips untouched by care,

Dreaming not that each might be,
On some other lips, a prayer-

'Rock of Ages, cleft for me,

Let me hide myself in Thee.'
Rock of Ages, cleft for me—"

'Twas a woman sung them now,
Pleadingly and prayerfully;

Every word her heart did know.
Rose the song as storm-tossed bird

Beats with weary wing the air,

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

Every note with sorrow stirred,

Every syllable a prayer

Rock of Ages, cleft for me,
Let me hide myself in Thee.”
"Rock of Ages, cleft for me,'

Lips grown aged sung the hymn
Trustingly and tenderly,

Voice grown weak and eyes grown dim-
“Let me hide myself in Thee.

Trembling though the voice, and low,
Rose the sweet strain peacefully

As a river in its flow;
Sung as only they can sing,

Who life's thorny paths have pressed;
Sung as only they can sing

Who behold the promised rest.
“Rock of Ages, cleft for me,”

Sung above a coffin-lid;
Underneath, all restfully,

All life's cares and sorrows hid.
Never more, O storm-tossed soul,

Never more from wind or tide,
Never more from billows' roll

Wilt thou need thyself to hide.
Could the sightless, sunken eyes,

Closed beneath the soft gray hair,
Could the mute and stiffened lips,

Move again in pleading prayer,
Still, aye still, the words would be,

“Let me hide myself in Thee."



Latin and Greek are useful, as they inure children to intel. lectual difficulties, and make the life of a young student, what it ought to be, a life of considerable labor. We do not, of course, mean to confine this praise exclusively to the study of Latin and Greek, or to suppose that other difficulties might not be found which it would be useful to overcome; but though Latin and Greek have this merit in common with many arts and sciences, still they have it; and, if they do nothing else, they at least secure a solid and vigorous application at a period of life which materially influences all other periods. To go through the grammar of one language thoroughly is of great

« PreviousContinue »