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Oh! therefore, gentle mother! pray,
Pray, while their light feet dance around
With an unwearied joy ;
Pray, while their careless hearts are full
Pray, when their young eyes open to
And when thou stealest to their couch,
And who shall tell what theirs may
Colloquial Powers of Dr. Franklin.-WILLIAM WIRT.
NEVER have I known such a fire-side companion as Dr. Franklin. Great as he was, both as a statesman and a philosopher, he never shone in a light more winning
than when he was seen in a domestic circle. It was once my good fortune to pass two or three weeks with him, at the house of a private gentleman, in the back part of Pennsylvania; and we were confined to the house, during the whole of that time, by the unintermitting constancy and depth of the snows. But confinement could never be felt where Franklin was an inmate. His cheerfulness and his colloquial powers spread around him a perpetual spring. When I speak, however, of his collo
quial powers, I do not mean to awaken any notion analogous to that which Boswell has given us when he so frequently mentions the colloquial powers of Dr. Johnson. The conversation of the latter reminds one of "the pomp and circumstance of glorious war." It was, indeed, a perpetual contest for victory, or an arbitrary and despotic exaction of homage to his superior talents. It was strong, acute, prompt, splendid and vociferous; as loud, stormy and sublime as those winds which he represents as shaking the Hebrides, and rocking the old castles that frowned upon the dark rolling sea beneath. But one gets tired of storms, however sublime thay may be, and longs for the more orderly current of nature. Of Franklin no one ever became tired. There was no ambition of eloquence, no effort to shine, in any thing which came from him. There was nothing which made any demand either upon your allegiance or your admiration.
His manner was as unaffected as infancy. It was nature's self. He talked like an old patriarch; and his plainness and simplicity put you at once at your ease, and gave you the full and free possession and use of all your faculties.
His thoughts were of a character to shine by their own light, without any adventitious aid. They required only a medium of vision, like his pure and simple style, to exhibit, to the highest advantage, their native radiance. and beauty. His cheerfulness was unintermitting. It seemed to be as much the effect of the systematic and salutary exercise of the mind as of its superior organization. His wit was of the first order; it did not show itself merely in occasional coruscations; but, without any effort or force on his part, it shed a constant stream of the purest light over the whole of his discourses.
Whether in company of the common people or nobles, he was always the same plain man; always most perfectly at his ease, his faculties in full play, and the full orbit of his genius forever clear and unclouded. And then the
.stores of his mind were inexhaustible. He had commenced life with an attention so vigilant, that nothing had escaped his observation; and a judgment so solid, that every incident was turned to advantage. His youth had not been wasted in idleness, nor overcast by intemperance. He had been all his life a close and deep reader, as well as thinker; and, by the force of his own powers, had wrought up the raw materials, which he had gathered from books, with such exquisite skill and felicity, that he had added a hundred fold to their original value, and justly made them his own.
The Captive of Camalu.-THOMAS PRINGLE.
[The following verses express the supposed feelings of an Amakosa (South African) exile, whose kindred had perished in some of the devastating wars waged between the colonists and the native tribes. Camalu is the name of a Caffre kraal or hamlet, near the sources of the Kat river; and the youthful captive is supposed not to have been altogether uninstructed in the religion of the gospel, or uninfluenced by its pure, elevating and forgiving spirit.]
O CAMALU, green Camalu!
'Twas there I fed my father's flock,
Along the grassy-margined rills,
Green Camalu! methinks I view
The lilies in thy meadows growing;
I hear, along thy valleys, lowing
The heifers wending to the fold,
Methinks I see the geelhout tree*
The old man rests in slumber deep!
My brothers too!-green Camalu,
Ay! there they sleep-where white men slew,
No pity had those men of pride;
They fired the huts above the dying!
I envy you, by Camalu,
Ye wild harts, on the woody hills;
And vultures slake in blood their bills:
Oh, wretched fate! heart-desolate,
* The yellow-wood tree (podocarpus elongata), in appearance resembling the cedar.
To serve the tyrant whom I hate
To crouch beneath his proud command-
His blows, his bitter scorn to bide!
Had with my slaughtered kinsmen died!
Ye mountains blue of Camalu,
Where once I fed my father's flock,
Yet, spite of chains these limbs that mock,
My homeless heart to you
As flies the wild dove to the rock,
To hide its wounded breast-and die.
Yet, ere my spirit wings its flight
Who, high above the clouds of time,
Of every race the Father-God!
I ask not judgments from thy hand-
Nor pestilence by famine brought :
say the prayer Jankannat taught,
Who wept for Amakosa's wrongs—
Thy kingdom come-thy will be wrought—
* A word of Hottentot origin, signifying the Beautiful, now used by most of the South African tribes as the name of the Supreme Being the Christian God.
The Caffre name for Dr. Vanderkemp.