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The reptile all this while appeared to be conscious of, and to sport with, while seeking to excite, her terrors. Now, with its flat head, distended mouth, and curving neck, would it dart forward its long form towards her,-its fatal teeth, unfolding on either side of its upper jaw, seeming to threaten her with instantaneous death, while its powerful eye shot forth glances of that fatal power of fascination, malignantly bright, which, by paralyzing, with a novel form of terror and of beauty, may readily account for the spell it possesses of binding the feet of the timid, and denying to fear even the privilege of flight. Could she have fled! She felt the necessity; but the power of her limbs was gone! and there still it lay, coiling and uncoiling, its arching neck glittering like a ring of brazed copper, bright and lurid; and the dreadful beauty of its eye still fastened, eagerly contemplating the victim, while the pendulous rattle still rang the deathnote, as if to prepare the conscious mind for the fate which is momently approaching to the blow. Meanwhile the stillness became death-like with all surrounding objects. The bird had gone with its scream and rush. The breeze was silent. The vines ceased
to wave. The leaves faintly quivered on their stems. The serpent once more lay still; but the eye was never once turned away from the victim. Its corded muscles are all in coil. They have but to unclasp suddenly, and the dreadful folds will be upon her, its full length, and the fatal teeth will strike, and the deadly venom which they secrete will mingle with the life-blood in her veins.
The terrified damsel, her full consciousness restored, but not her strength, feels all the danger. She sees that the sport of the terrible reptile is at an end. She cannot now mistake the horrid expression of its eye. She strives to scream, but the voice dies. away, a feeble gurgling in her throat. Her tongue is paralyzed; her lips are sealed; once more she strives for flight, but her limbs refuse their office. She has nothing left of life but its fearful consciousness. It is in her despair that, a last effort, she succeeds to scream, a single wild cry, forced from her by the accumulated agony; she sinks down upon the grass before her enemy, -her eyes, however, still open, and still looking upon those which he directs forever upon them. She sees him approach,-now advancing, now receding,- -now swelling in every part with something of anger, while his neck is arched beautifully like that of a wild horse under the curb; until, at length, tired as it were of play, like the cat with its victim, she sees the neck growing larger and becoming completely bronzed as about to strike,-the huge jaws unclosing almost directly above her, the long tubulated fang, charged with venom, protruding from the cavernous mouth, --and she sees no more! Insensibility came to her aid, and she lay almost lifeless under the very folds of the monster.
In that moment the copse parted, and an arrow, piercing the monster through and through the neck, bore his head forward to the ground, alongside of the maiden, while his spiral extremities, now unfolding in his own agony, were actually, in part, writhing upon her person. The arrow came from the fugitive Occonestoga, who had fortunately reached the spot, in season, on his way to the Block House. He rushed from the copse as the snake fell, and, with a stick, fearlessly approached him where he lay tossing in agony upon the grass. Seeing him advance, the courageous reptile made an effort to regain his coil, shaking the fearful rattle violently at every evolution which he took for that purpose; but the arrow, completely passing through his neck, opposed an unyielding obstacle to the endeavor; and, finding it hopeless, and seeing the new enemy about to assault him, with something of the spirit of the white man under like circumstances, he turned desperately round, and striking his charged fangs, so that they were riveted in the wound they made, into a susceptible part of his own body, he threw himself over with a single convulsion, and, a moment after, lay dead beside the utterly unconscious maiden.1
SONG OF THE ZEPHYR SPIRIT.
I have come from the deeps where the sea-maiden twines,
And weaves for thy coming the subtlest of spells;
Thou hast dream'd in thy boyhood of sea-circled bowers,
And the soul lives in dreams of a lasting delight!
For her mansions of coral, far down in the sea.
Her charms will beguile thee when noonday is nigh,
The song of her nymphs shall persuade thee to sleep,
"The power of the rattlesnake to fascinate is a frequent faith among the superstitious of the Southern country-people. Of this capacity in reference to birds and insects, frogs, and the smaller reptiles, there is indeed little question. Its power over persons is not so well authenticated, although numberless instances of this sort are given by persons of very excellent veracity. The above is almost literally worded after a verbal narrative furnished the author by an old lady, who never dreamed, herself, of doubting the narration."
But still, with a charm which is born of the hours,
HEART ESSENTIAL TO GENIUS.
We are not always equal to our fate
Nor true to our conditions. Doubt and fear
At moments when the soul, no more elate
With expectation, sinks beneath the time.
Said Raleigh, gazing on the highest hill,"But that I tremble with the fear to fall."
Apt was the answer of the high-soul'd queen :-
Crowns genius with his lion will and mien,
ISAAC MCLELLAN is a native of Portland, Maine, and was born on the 21st of May, 1806. In early life, his father, Isaac McLellan, removed to Boston, where for many years he was a prominent merchant, distinguished for his integrity and success in business. The son, after receiving his degree at Bowdoin College, in 1826, returned to Boston, completed a course of legal study, and was admitted to practice in the courts of that city. But the Muses and general literature had more charms for him than clients and briefs, and for many years he contributed, both in prose and poetry, to several magazines and papers published in the city and vicinity, and had the editorial management of two or three of them. About the year 1840, he went abroad, and passed about two years in Europe. On his return, he gave a description of his journeyings, in a series of letters published in the "Boston Daily Courier." Since that period, he has been engaged chiefly in literary pursuits, and now resides in the city of New York.
Mr. McLellan's published works are, The Fall of the Indian, in 1830; The Year, and other Poems, in 1832; and Mount Auburn, and other Poems, in 1843. Though the Muse of Mr. McLellan aims at no ambitious flight, yet in the middle region of the descriptive and the lyrical in which she delights chiefly to play, she moves with even and graceful wing, bearing such offerings as the following:
To right those wrongs, come weal, come woe,
And where are ye, O fearless men?
I call: the hills reply again
That ye have pass'd away;
That on old Bunker's lonely height,
In Trenton, and in Monmouth ground,
The grass grows green, the harvest bright,
1 "Mr. President: I shall enter on no encomium upon Massachusetts; she needs none. There she is behold her, and judge for yourselves. There is her history. The world knows it by heart. The past, at least, is secure. There is Boston, and Concord, and Lexington, and Bunker Hill; and there they will remain forever. The bones of her sons, falling in the great struggle for independence, now lie mingled with the soil of every State, from New England to Georgia; and there they will remain forever."- Webster's Speech in Reply to Hayne, 1830.
The bugle's wild and warlike blast
The starry flag, 'neath which they fought,
From their old graves shall rouse them not;
SUGGESTED BY A PICTURE BY WASHINGTON ALLSTON.
The tender Twilight with a crimson cheek
And slow are winding home. Hark, from afar
Of peace in some green paradise like this.
The brazen trumpet and the loud war-drum Ne'er startled these green woods:-the raging sword Hath never gather'd its red harvest here! The peaceful summer day hath never closed Around this quiet spot, and caught the gleam Of War's rude pomp:-the humble dweller here Hath never left his sickle in the field,
To slay his fellow with unholy hand:-