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The trumpet of the angel cast
I STOOD on the bridge at midnight,
As the clocks were striking the hour, And the moon rose o'er the city,
Behind the dark church-tower.
I saw her bright reflection
In the waters under me, Like a golden goblet falling
And sinking into the sea.
And far in the hazy distance
Of that lovely night in June, The blaze of the flaming furnace
Gleamed redder than the moon.
Among the long, black rafters
The wavering shadows lay, And the current that came from the ocean
Seemed to lift and bear them away ;
As, sweeping and eddying through them,
Rose the belated tide,
The seaweed floated wide.
And like those waters rushing
Among the wooden piers,
That filled my eyes with tears.
How often, oh, how often,
In the days that had gone by, I had stood on that bridge at midnight,
And gazed on that wave and sky!
How often, oh, how often,
I had wished that the ebbing tide Would bear me away on its bosom
O'er the ocean wild and wide!
heart was hot and restless,
care, And the burden laid upon me
Seemed greater than I could bear.
But now it has fallen from me,
It is buried in the sea ;
Throws its shadow over me.
Yet whenever I cross the river
On its bridge with wooden piers, Like the odour of brine from the ocean
Comes the thought of other years.
And I think how many thousands
Of care-encumbered men,
Have crossed the bridge since then.
I see the long procession
Still passing to and fro,
And the old subdued and slow !
And for ever and for ever,
As long as the river flows,
As long as life has woes ;
The moon and its broken reflection
And its shadows shall appear, As the symbol of love in heaven,
And its wavering image here.
TO “ THE DRIVING CLOUD.”
GLOOMY and dark art thou, O chief of the mighty
Omawhaws ; Gloomy and dark, as the driving cloud, whose name
thou hast taken ! Wrapt in thy scarlet blanket, I see thee stalk through
the city's Narrow and populous streets, as once by the margin
of rivers Stalked those birds unknown, that have left us only
their footprints. What, in a few short years, will remain of thy race
but the footprints ?
How canst thou walk in these streets, who hast trod
the green turf of the prairies ? How canst thou breathe in this air, who hast breathed
the sweet air of the mountains ? Ah! 'tis in vain that with lordly looks of disdain
thou dost challenge Looks of dislike in return, and question these walls
and these pavements, Claiming the soil for thy hunting-grounds, while downStarve in the garrets of Europe, and cry from its
caverns that they too Have been created heirs of the earth, and claim its
Back, then, back to thy woods in the regions west of
the Wabash ! There as a monarch thou reignest. In autumn the
leaves of the maple Pave the floors of thy palace-halls with gold, and in
Pine-trees waft through its chambers the odorous
breath of their branches. There thou art strong and great, a hero, a tamer of
horses ! There thou chasest the stately stag on the banks of
the Elk-horn, Or by the roar of the Running-Water, or where the
Omawhaw Calls thee, and leaps through the wild ravine like a
brave of the Blackfeet !
Hark! what murmurs arise from the heart of those
mountainous deserts ! Is it the cry of the Foxes and Crows, or the mighty
Behemoth, Who, unharmed, on his tusks once caught the bolts
of the thunder,