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The heart, like a tendril, accustom'd to cling,
Let it grow where it will, cannot flourish alone, But will lean to the nearest and loveliest thing
It can twine with itself, and make closely its own.
To be doom’d to find something, still, that is dear,
To make light of the rest, if the rose is not there; And the world's so rich in resplendent eyes,
'Twere a pity to limit one's love to a pair. Love's wing and the peacock's are nearly alike,
They are both of them bright, bụt they're changeable too, And, wherever a new beam of beauty can strike,
It will tincture Love's plume with a different hue! Then oh! what pleasure, where'er we rove,
To be doom'd to find something, still, that is dear, And to know, when far from the lips we love,
We have but to make love to the lips we are near.
THE IRISH PEASANT TO HIS MISTRESS.
I. THROUGH grief and through danger thy smile hath cheer'd
my way, Till hope seem'd to bud from each thorn that round me lay; The darker our fortune, the brighter our pure love burn'd, Till shame into glory, till fear into zeal was turn’d : Oh! slave as I was, in thy arms my spirit felt free, And bless'd even the sorrows, that made me more dear to thee.
Thy rival was honour'd, while thou wert wrong'd and scorn'd;
They slander thee sorely, who say thy vows are frail -
Losing all that made life dear,
In days of boyhood, meet our ear,
Wakening thoughts that long have slept;
Beds of oriental flowers,
That once was heard in happier hours;
Though the flowers have sunk in death ;
Language fades before thy spell !
When thou canst breathe her soul so well ?
Love's are even more false than they ;
Can sweetly soothe, and not betray! * “ Where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty," --St. PAUL, 2 Corinthians, iii. 17.
IT IS NOT THE TEAR AT THIS MOMENT SHED.*
When the cold turf has just been laid o'er him,
Or how deep in our hearts we deplore him.
Through a life, by his loss all shaded ;
While it shines through our hearts, will improve them;
When we think how he lived but to love them!
To shrines where they've been lying,
From the image he left there in dying !
THE ORIGIN OF THE HARP.
But she loved him in vain, for he left her to weep,
* These lines were occasioned by the loss of a very near and dear relative, who died lately at Madeira.
And her hair, shedding tear-drops from all its bright rings, Fell over her white arm, to make the gold strings ! *
IV. Hence it came, that this soft Harp so long hath been known To mingle love's language with sorrow's sad tone; Till thou didst divide them, and teach the fond lay To be love, when I'm near thee, and grief when away!
* This thought was suggested by an ingenious design, prefixed to an ode upon St. Cecilia, published some years since, by Mr. Hudson of Dublin.
This Number of The MELODIES ought to have appeared much earlier; and the writer of the words is ashamed to confess, that the delay of its publication must be imputed chiefly, if not entirely, to him. He finds it necessary to make this avowal, not only for the purpose of removing all blame from the publisher, but in consequence of a rumour, which has been circulated industriously in Dublin, that the Irish Government had interfered to prevent the continuance of the Work. This would be, indeed, a revival of HENRY the Eight's enactments against Minstrels, and it is very flattering to find that so much importance is attached to our compilation, even by such persons as the inventors of the report. Bishop Lowth, it is true, was of this opinion, that one song, like the Hymn to Harmodius, would have done more towards rousing the spirit of the Romans than all the philippics of CICERO. But we live in wiser and less musical times; ballads have long lost their revolutionary powers, and we question if even a
“ Lillibullero" would produce any very serious consequences at present. It is needless, therefore, to add, that there is no truth in the report; and we trust that whatever beliefit obtained was founded more upon the character of the Government than of the Work.
The airs of the last Number, though full of originality and beauty, were perhaps, in general, too curiously selected to become all at once as popular as, we think, they deserve to be. The Public are remarkably reserved towards new acquaintances in music, which, perhaps, is one of the reasons why many modern composers introduce none but old friends to their notice. Indeed, it is natural that persons who love music only by association, should be slow in feeling the charms of a new and strange melody; while those who have a quick sensibility for this enchanting art, will as naturally seek and enjoy novelty, because in every variety of strain they find a fresh combination of ideas, and the sound has scarcely reached the ear, before the heart has rapidly translated it into sentiment. After all, however, it cannot be denied that the most popular of our national Airs are also the most beautiful; and it has been our wish, in the present Number, to select from those melodies only which have long been listened to and admired. The least known in the collection is the Air of “ Love's young Dream ;” but it is one of those easy, artless strangers, whose merit the heart acknowledges instantly.
T. M. Bury Street, St. James's, Nov. 1811.