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above the horizon, and turned the dewy tear-drops of flower and leaf into rubies and diamonds. In a few seconds, the everlasting gates of the morning were thrown wide open, and the lord of day, arrayed in glories too severe for the gaze of man, began his state.
THE UNIVERSAL BOUNTIES OF PROVIDENCE.
A celebrated skeptical philosopher of the last century-the historian, Hume—thought to demolish the credibility of the Christian revelation, by the concise argument,—“It is contrary to experience that a miracle should be true, but not contrary to experience that testimony should be false.” Contrary to experience that phenomena should exist which we cannot trace to causes perceptible to the human sense, or conceivable by human thought! It would be much nearer the truth to say that within the husbandman's experience there are no phenomena which can be rationally traced to any thing but the instant energy of creative power.
Did this philosopher ever contemplate the landscape at the close of the year, when seeds, and grains, and fruits have ripened, and stalks have withered, and leaves have fallen, and winter has forced her icy curb even into the roaring jaws of Niagara, and sheeted half a continent in her glittering shroud, and all this teeming vegetation and organized life are locked in cold and marble obstructions, and after week upon week, and month upon month, have swept, with sleet, and chilly rain, and howling storm, over the earth, and riveted their crystal bolts upon the door of nature's sepulchre,—when the sun at length begins to wheel in higher circles through the sky, and softer winds to breathe over melting snows,—did he ever behold the long-hidden earth at length appear, and soon the timid grass peep forth; and anon the autumnal wheat begin to paint the field, and velvet leaflets to burst from purple buds, throughout the reviving forest, and then the mellow soil to open its fruitful bosom to every grain and seed dropped from the planter's hand,—buried, but to spring up again, clothed with a new, mysterious being; and then, as more fervid suns inflame the air, and softer showers distil from the clouds, and gentler dews string their pearls on twig and tendril, did he ever watch the ripening grain and fruit, pendent from stalk, and vine, and tree; the meadow, the field, the pasture, the grove, each after his kind, arrayed in myriad-tinted garments, instinct with circulating life; seven millions of counted leaves on a single tree, each of which is a system whose exquisite complication puts to shame the shrewdest cunning of the human hand; every planted seed and grain, which had been loaned to
the earth, compounding its pious usury thirty, sixty, a hundred fold,--all harmoniously adapted to the sustenance of living nature, the bread of a hungry world; here, a tilled corn-field, whose yellow blades are nodding with the food of man; there, an unplanted wilderness,—the great Father's farm, where He “who hears the raven's cry" has cultivated, with his own hand, his merciful crop of berries, and nuts, and acorns, and seeds, for the humbler families of animated nature; the solemn elephant, the browsing deer, the wild pigeon whose fluttering caravan darkens the sky, the merry squirrel, who bounds from branch to branch, in the joy of his little life,—has he seen all •this? Does he see it every year, and month, and day? Does he live, and move, and breathe, and think, in this atmosphere of wonder,-himself the greatest wonder of all, whose smallest fibre and faintest pulsation is as much a mystery as the blazing glories of Orion's belt? And does he still maintain that a miracle is contrary to experience? If he has, and if he does, then let him go, in the name of Heaven, and say that it is contrary to experience that the august Power which turns the clods of the earth into the daily bread of a thousand million souls could feed five thousand in the wilderness.
Address before the New York Agricultural Society, October 9, 1857.
JOSEPH RODMAN DRAKE, 1795-1820.
Green be the turf above thee,
Friend of my better days! None knew thee but to love thee,
Nor named thee but to praise. Tears fell, when thou wert dying,
From eyes unused to weep;
Will tears the cold turf steep.
Like thine, are laid in carth,
To tell the world their worth ;
And I, who woke each morrow
To clasp thy hand in mine,
Whose wcal and woe were thine,-
Around thy faded brow;
And feel I cannot now.
Nor thoughts nor words are free;
Joseph RODMAN DRAKE was born in the city of New York, August 7, 1795. After a suitable preparatory education, he entered upon the study of medicine, obtained his degree in October, 1816, and soon after was married to a daughter of Henry Eckford, a wealthy merchant, and was thus placed above the necessity of laboring in his profession. It was well that it was so; for his health, always delicate, began to decline, and, in the winter of 1819, he went to New Orleans, in the hope that its milder climate would be of service to him. But he returned in the spring of 1520, not in the least improved, lingered through the summer, and died on the 21st of September, 1820.
Drake began to write verses when he was very young, and, before he was sis. teen, contributed, anonymously, to two or three newspapers. Some humorous and satirical odes, called the Croaker Pieces, were written by him for the “Evening Post,” in March, 1819; and soon after, his friend Halleck, the poet, united with him, and the pieces were signed "Croaker & Co.” The last one, written by Drake, was that spirited ode, The American Flag. But
THE CULPRIT FAY
is that on which the fame of Drake chiefly rests, and an ever-enduring foundation will it prove to be ; for a poem of more exquisite fancy--as happily conceived as it is artistically executed—we have hardly had since the days of Miltod's “ Comus." It opens with the gathering—“ in the middle watch of a summer's night”-of countless spirits of earth from their various homes.
They come from beds of lichen green,
Some on the backs of beetles fly
Where they swung in their cobweb hammocks high,
Some from the hum-bird's downy nest,-
And, pillow'd on plumes of his rainbow breast,
Some had lain in the scoop of the rock,
And some had open'd the four-o'clock,
And now they throng the moonlight glade,
Their little minim forms array'd
In the tricksy pomp of fairy pride! They assemble for the following purpose :
For an Ouphe has broken his vestal vow;
To the elfin court must haste away :-
To hear the doom of the culprit Fay.
Thou shalt watch the oozy brine
And dash around, with roar and rave,
They are the imps that rule the wave.
“If the spray-bead gem be won,
The stain of thy wing is wash'd away:
Ere thy crime be lost for aye;
Hence! to the water-side, away!" The following description of his armor is one of surpassing delicacy and beauty :
He put his acorn helmet on;
He bared his blade of the bent grass blue;
And away like a glance of thought he few,
The fiery trail of the rocket-star.
Up to the cope careering swift,
In breathless motion fast,
Or the sea-roc rides the blast,
The spheréd moon is past,
On a sheet of azure cast.
To tread the starry plain of even,
And feel the cooling breath of heaven!
He is successful in his mission, and, on his return, the myriad joyous and dancing sprites—his merry companions— thus welcome him, and then all Tanish :
Ouphe and Goblin! Imp and Sprite!
Elf of eve! and starry Fay!
Hither-hither wend your way;
Sing and trip it merrily,
Round the wild witch-hazel tree.
With dance and song, and lute and lyre,
And doubly bright his fairy fire.
Brush the dew and print the lea;
Round the wild witch-hazel tree.
He flies about the haunted place,
He hums in his ears and flaps his face;
The owlet's eyes our lanterns be;
Round the wild witch-hazel tree.
The sentry-elf his call has made :
Shapes of moonlight! Ait and fade!