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The fiends of his revenge were sent
From thy pure Gospel's element
Who in that name the gallows rears,
With sacrifice of blood and tears ? Oh, once again thy healing lay
On the blind eyes which knew Thee not And let the light of thy pure day
Melt in upon his darkened thought. Soften his hard, cold heart, and show
The power which in forbearance lies, And let him feel that mercy now
Is better than old sacrifice !
As on the White Sea's charmed shore,
The Parsee sees his holy hill With dunnest smoke-clouds curtained o'er, Yet knows beneath them, evermore,
The low, pale fire is quivering still ; So underneath its clouds of sin,
The heart of man retaineth yet Gleams of its holy origin;
And half-quenched stars that never set, Dim colors of its faded bow,
And early beauty, linger there,
Faint breathings of its morning air,
Hath Heaven inscribed “ DESPAIR ! ”
My brother man, Beware! With that deep voice which from the skies Forbade the Patriarch's sacrifice,
God's angel cries, FORBEAR !
RANDOLPH OF ROANOKE.
Oh, Mother Earth! upon thy lap
Thy weary ones receiving, And o'er them, silent as a dream,
Thy grassy mantle weaving, Fold softly in thy long embrace
That heart so worn and broken, And cool its pulse of fire beneath
Thy shadows old and oaken.
Shut out from him the bitter word
And serpent hiss of scorning ; Nor let the storms of yesterday
Disturb his quiet morning. Breathe over him forgetfulness
Of all save deeds of kindness, And, save to smiles of grateful eyes,
Press down his lids in blindness.
There, where with living ear and eye
He heard Potomac's flowing, And, through his tall ancestral trees,
Saw Autumn's sunset glowing, He sleeps-still looking to the West,
Beneath the dark wood shadow, As if he still would see the sun
Sink down on wave and meadow.
Bard, Sage, and Tribune -in himself
All moods of mind contrastingThe tenderest wail of human woe,
The scorn-like lightning blasting; The pathos which from rival eyes
Unwilling tears could summon, T'he stinging taunt, the fiery burst
Of hatred scarcely human !
Mirth, sparkling like a diamond shower,
From lips of life-long sadness; Clear picturings of majestic thought
Upon a ground of madness; And over all Romance and Song
A classic beauty throwing,
Her storied pages showing.
Beheld its schemes disjointed,
And spectral finger pointed.
With trenchant wit unsparing,
The robe Pretence was wearing.
A love he never cherished,
His patriotism perished.
Our eagle's dusky pinion,
Stoop o'er his Old Dominion !
Racked nerve, and brain all burning, llis loving faith in Mother-land
Knew never shade of turning ;
Whatever sky was o'er him,
Her blue peaks rose before him.
No false and vain pretences, Nor paid a lying priest to seek
For scriptural defences
His harshest words of proud rebuke,
His bitterest taunt and scorning, Fell fire-like on the Northern brow
That bent to him in fawning.
He held his slaves : yet kept the while
His reverence for the Human; In the dark vassals of his will
He saw but Man and Woman! No hunter of God's outraged poor
His Roanoke valley entered ; No trader in the souls of men
Across his threshhold ventured.
And when the old and wearied man
Laid down for his last sleeping, And at his side, a slave no more,
His brother man stood weeping, His latest thought, his latest breath,
To Freedom's duty giving,
The dying blest the living.
A truer son or braver!
On foreign hate or favor.
His proud and manly feeling
excuses of the wrong Or meanness of concealing.
But none beheld with clearer eye
The plague-spot o'er her spreading, None heard more sure the steps of Doom
Along her future treading. For her as for himself he spake,
When, his gaunt frame upbracing, He traced with dying hand * REMORSE!"
And perished in the tracing.
As from the grave where Henry sleeps,
From Vernon's weeping willow,
The Sage of Monticello,
Of Randolph's lowly dwelling,
A warning voice is swelling !
Are sadder warnings spoken,
Their household gods have broken.
And briars for corn-sheaves giving !
Were now one hero living !
ALL things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them.-Matthew vii. 12.
BEARER of Freedom's holy light,
Breaker of Slavery's chain and rod, The foe of all which pains the sight,
Or wounds the generous ear of God!
Beautiful yet thy temples rise,
Though there profaning gifts are thrown; And fires unkindled of the skies
Are glaring round thy altar-stone.
Still sacred-though thy name be breathed
By those whose hearts thy truth deride;
Around the haughty brows of Pride.