« PreviousContinue »
the Sultan ? The interests of Russia or has the world yet to witness new are unquestionably bound up in its phases in this Eastern question, and permanence and developement. The are centuries still to elapse before interests of the Porte are actually sa, “ the river Euphrates shall be dried crificed by its provisions, The inte- up, that the way of the kings of the rests of Great Britain, France, and East may be prepared ?" The status Austria are necessarily compromised quo is next to impossible ; not perby the Russian possession of the Bos- haps for the hour, the month, or the phorus, which virtually that treaty year, but for almost the shortest peensures. By the treaty of Adrianople, riod of a nation's history. We count Turkey obliged herself to pay to the our lives by moments those of nations autocrat ten millions of ducats. By by years. The Eastern question canthe treaty of Unkiar Skelessi, she sold not be setTLED without war and conher freedom for a mess of pottage. As flagration. It may be postponedshe was unable to defend herself, and not long—but for a short space of as her “ faithful" allies would not time, its settlement by diplomacy is defend her, therefore, by an everlast- impossible. The decline and fall of ing law of life among nations, she is empires, long since unknown but in no longer an independent state-she the works of the historian, should is no more. Is this treaty, then, to teach us that the present position of the be suffered to remain as the political affairs of the East is only preparatory nightshade over the destinies of the to a mighty catastrophe. The Moham. Porte ? If so, Turkey must expire, medan empire is reaching the closing Russia announces ber fixed resolu- period of its eventful history. But tion to maintain the integrity of the what is to supersede it? Is the Stamtreaty, and to make war for its
boul of the past to be inhabited by adservation. England has refused, by vancing Cossacks, and the yet uncivi. the Whigs, to go to war with Russia. lized hordes of the Russian forests ? She has sacrificed the freedom of the Is the ancient Byzantium, once the Black Sea, and the independence of seat of the Roman empire in the east, the Bosphorus, to her policy in Ire- to become the capital of another desland and her internal squabbles about potism, not less tyrannical, but far less pretended reform. France looks on. enlightened ? Is the Archipelago to Austria imitates her example. The become the private property of the treaty of Unkiar Skelessi exists, and Russian Czars ? Is the Sea of Marmora Turkey is gradually expiring beneath to be closed to all pendants but that the “ protection" of the Czar. of the eagle of the north ? Are the
Seventh, and finally, Is the Turkish Turks to saunter, as strangers in a empire to be reconstituted ? or is an strange land, amongst the ruins of their Egyptian and Syrian empire to be former glories ? Are their children to founded? Are we approaching the pe- feel that they are ruled by a stranger's riod when that mighty Mohammedan hand as they walk on the Hippodrome, colossus which bestrode the world is or enter the temple of St Sophia ? We for ever to disappear, and when new cannot answer these questions ; but states and empires are to arise on the appearances are all in favour of the ruins of error, vice, and superstition ? affirmative.
THE BOWER OF PEACE.
WHEN Hope's illusions all have waned,
And Silence broods above the dead; When Sorrow's clouds have gloom'd, and rain'd
Full oft on man's devoted head, The time-taught spirit loves to wend
Back through the past its mazy way, And see the early larks ascend
Up to the gates of day: While earth, outspread to childhood's glance, Glow'd like a dream of bright romance. 'Twas in the depth of dazzling May,
When bland the air, and blue the skies;
And How'rets of innumerous dyes
On a salubrious morning bright,
With thrillings of delight,
That, from the covert of green trees,
Borne on the bloom-enamour'd breeze: I listen’d to the birds that trillid,
Each in its turn, some witching note :
Their wintry sleep forgot ;
Rear'd up their crowns all freshly green,
King-cups and daffodils were seen: The lambs were frisking in the mead;
Beneath the white-flower'd chestnut-tree
And bent his placid knee :
On an oak stump mine elbow laid,
Of glade and glen, in pomp array'd.
And bearing on its side
Around the spot so blandly spread, That sure the inmates must be blest,
Unto my soul I said ;
Sin, strife, or sorrow, cannot come,
From life's parade and idle show, 'Twould be an enviable lot,
Life's silent tenor here to know ;
and blameless eyes ; To nurse those holy thoughts within
Which fit us for the skies,
Alone of happiness and peace;
And hydra-pangs that never cease : Is it not so? And yet we blame
Our fate for frailties all our own, Giving, with sighs, Misfortune's name
To what is fault alone : Plunge we in sin's black flood, yet dream To rise unsullied from such stream ? V ain thought! far better, then, to shun
The turmoils of the rash and vain, And pray the Everlasting One
To keep the heart from earthly stain ; Within some sylvan home like this,
To hear the world's far billows roll; And feel, with deep contented bliss,
They cannot shake the soul, Or dim the impress bright and grand, Stamp'd on it by the Maker's hand. When round this bustling world we look,
What treasures observation there? Doth it not seem as man mistook
This passing scene of toil and care For an eternity? As if
This cloudland were his final home;
Of something yet to come?
As if terrestrial strength could turn
And disappoint the funeral urn: To Pride - Behold, I must, and can 1"
To Fame-" Thou art mine idol-god!” To Gold—“ Thou art my talisman
And necromantic rod!” Down Time's far stream he darts his eye, Nor dreams that he shall ever die. Oh, fool, fool, fool !--and is it thus
Thou feed'st of vanity the flame ? The great, the good are swept from us,
And only live in deed or name. From out the myriads of the past,
Two only have been spared by Death ; And deem'st thou that a spell thou hast
To deprecate his wrath ?
Where are the warrior-men of old ?
Where are the realms on which they trod ? While conquest's blood-red flag unroll'd,
And man proclaim'd himself a god! Where are the sages, and their saws,
Whence wisdom shone with dazzling beams? The legislators, and their laws,
What are they now but dreams?
; Our fathers !!-are they aught, I ween,
But household recollections now? Our fathers !!!_nay, the very boys,
Who, with ourselves, were such at school, When, nectar-sweet, life's cup of joys
Felt almost over-full,
To reap the whirlwind for our pains ;
All proffer'd ransom Time disdains ;All that was once our idle boast,
Weigh’d in the balance, dust shall be ; Death knocks-frail man gives up the ghost
He dies--and where is he?
To reason turn, from error cease ;
The still small tongue that whispers peace : Withhold the heart from worldly strife
Do good-love mercy-evil fly ;
We wake but when we die ;-
Subdued in heart, and craving grace,
Forgiveness in the Saviour's face; At contrite hearts He will not scoff
Whoever knocks an entrance wins :
The burden of our sins;
THE ANTEDILUVIANS; OR, THE WORLD DESTROYED.
* It is many years,” says Dr M Henry, adopts none at all, and, after a term “ since I first entertained the design protracted far beyond the narrow span of writing a narrative poem, on some usually allotted to human life, he dies great event in the history of Man; but without his fame, and leaves no proof the selection of that event was a matter of his existence here below, except, of no slight difficulty. A good sub- perhaps, a few pieces of prose. ject, I knew, was the first step towards Such, however, will not be the fate success in any literary undertaking ; of Dr M.Henry-though he has made and I resolved to adopt none which I
à narrow escape.
6. The annals of did not feel persuaded would form a mankind,” he acutely remarks, “furrecommendation to my work.” Mrs nish many great and stirring events, Hannah and Mr Thomas Moore, and well adapted to poetic narration ; but our friend Mr John Stewart, have fur. I wanted one not only great in its nished us with elaborate pictures of character, but universal in its effects, gentlemen respectively in search of a that all men might feel an interest in wife, a religion, and a horse ; but none its details." That was a noble ambiof the three is so impressive as the Doc- tion, and proved how just an appreciator's of a poet in search of a subject. tion the Doctor had been led to make In that search his sconce has become of his powers, aspiring very early to slape_his eyes have lost their lustre the most extensive practice. “ Neither --his frame has been bent earthwards; the founding of a state," he exultingly 80 that, while yet little more than declares, " the achievement of a victhreescore, his semblance is that of tory, nor the overthrow of an empire, extreme old
Even we ourselves was therefore adequate to my wishes.” look-nay feel young, in his presence; " Tantæ molis erat Romanam condere to us
gentem," " The oldest man he seems that ever wore
a line by many thought to be magni
ficent, seemed almost mean to his This comes of devoting one's-self for imagination. many years to the selection—for the Mõruy aude, Osòs, Iinanoodoos ’Axtraños, subject of a narrative poem-of some great event in the history of man. an invocation by all felt to be sublime Their multitude is overwhelming fell far short of the reaches of his sou and shifting as the clouds. An event mand thus the lliad and the Æneid that to the eyes of imagination over- appeared to the Doctor to be respectshadows the whole morning sky-at able poems in their way—“on great meridian looks but a speck-in the and stirring events, well adapted to gloaming, is gone. “ Among great poetic narration ”_hut because “ not events, alas ! how few good subjects !" universal in their effects,” sufficient mentally exclaims the solitary, with a for the genius of a Homer and a Virgil, sigh. But a good subject is “the but inadequate to that of a M.Henry, first step towards success in any lite- born in the fulness of time and for the rary undertaking ;” and till that is illumination of the whole race of man. taken, lack-a-daisical indeed must be • The discovery of the New World,” the aspect of the meditative poet-sit- he admits, “ was an event of great and ting by himself with his pen in his general interest ; but it was already hand. Every year he grows harder poetically occupied, and therefore and harder to please-subjects not to forbidden to me by both courtesy and be sneezed at on the score of size, to policy.” America, it may be remarked his fastidious optics seem contempt- as we go along, is not a new world, ibly small-mountains dwindle into but merely one of the four quarters of molehills-rivers into rills-seas into the old and the old world went on ponds; and the consequence is, that, well enough for the purposes of poetry, “ resolved to adopt no subject which while it was supposed to consist but he does not feel persuaded would form of Europe, Asia, and Africa - yet a recommendation to his work,” he do we cheerfully grant that the disco.
James M'Henry, M.D. London: Cradock; 1839.