Oh, sun! that o'er the western mountains now
Goest down in glory! ever beautiful
And blessed is thy radiance, whether thou
Colourest the eastern heaven and night-mist cool,
Till the bright day-star vanish, or on high
Climbest and streamest thy white splendours from mid-sky.
Should we, in the world's riper years, neglect
God's ancient sanctuaries, and adore
Only among the crowd and under roofs
That our frail hands have raised?
A Forest Hymn
They talk of short-lived pleasures—be it so—
pain dies as quickly: stern, hard-featured pain
Expires, and lets her weary prisoner go.
The fiercest agonies have shortest reign;
And after dreams of horror, comes again
The welcome morning with its rays of peace.
Heed not the night; a summer lodge amid the wild is mine -
'Tis shadowed by the tulip-tree, 'tis mantled by the vine.
The Strange Lady, st. 6
When April winds
Grew soft, the maple burst into a flush
Of scarlet flowers. The tulip tree, high up,
Opened in airs of June her multitude
Of golden chalices to humming-birds
And silken-wing'd insects of the sky.
I would make Reason my guide, but she should sometimes sit Patiently by the way-side, while I traced
The mazes of the pleasant wilderness
Around me. She should be my counsellor,
But not my tyrant. For the spiritneeds
Impulses from a deeper source than hers,
And there are motions, in the mind of man,
That she must look upon with awe. I bow
Reverently to her dictates, but not less
Hold to the fair illusions of old time —
lllusions that shed brightness over life,
And glory over nature.
"The Conjunction of Jupiter and Venus" in Poems (1841)
These struggling tides of life that seem
In wayward, aimless course to tend,
Are eddies of the mighty stream
That rolls to its appointed end.
Glorious are the woods in their latest gold and crimson,
Yet our full-leaved willows are in the freshest green.
Such a kindly autumn, so mercifully dealing
With the growths of summer, I never yet have seen.
The Third of November, 1861. Thirty Poems. Appleton, New York. pp. 112-115. (1864)
The rugged trees are mingling
Their flowery sprays in love;
The ivy climbs the laurel
To clasp the boughs above.
The right to discuss freely and openly, by speech, by the pen, by the press, all political questions, and to examine and animadvert upon all political institutions, is a right so clear and certain, so interwoven with our other liberties, so necessary, in fact to their existence, that without it we must fall at once into depression or anarchy. To say that he who holds unpopular opinions must hold them at the peril of his life, and that, if he expresses them in public, he has only himself to blame if they who disagree with him should rise and put him to death, is to strike at all rights, all liberties, all protection of the laws, and to justify and extenuate all crimes.
Editorial written in remembrance of Elijah Parish Lovejoy, Presbyterian minister, journalist, newspaper editor and abolitionist, who was murdered by a pro-slavery mob in Alton, Illinois during their attack on his warehouse to destroy his press and abolitionist materials.
To him who in the love of Nature holds
Communion with her visible forms, she speaks
A various language.
Go forth under the open sky, and list
To Nature's teachings.
Rock-ribbed, and ancient as the sun.
Old ocean's gray and melancholy waste.
All that tread,
The globe are but a handful to the tribes
That slumber in its bosom.
So live, that when thy summons comes to join
The innumerable caravan which moves
To that mysterious realm, where each shall take
His chamber in the silent halls of death,
Thou go not, like the quarry-slave at night,
Scourged to his dungeon, but, sustained and soothed
By an unfaltering trust, approach thy grave
Like one who wraps the drapery of his couch
About him, and lies down to pleasant dreams.
l. 73. Note: The edition of 1821 read, "The innumerable caravan that moves / To the pale realms of shade, where each shall take".