Imágenes de páginas


[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

toward Mr. Hudson, for we did not know and had never before seen him. We adopted his own often-vaunted freedom of speech; for although, like old Asgill, ó we can write as softly as other men, 'with submission to better judgments,' and 'we leave it to you, gentlemen; we are but one, and always distrust ourself; we only hint our thoughts; you will please to consider whether you will not think that it may seem to deserve your con. sideration,' and the like. This is a taking way of writing; much good may it do them that use it ! Mr. Hudson eschewed this style, and so in his case did we. He should not have been offended thereat. We simply expressed our candid opinions of his matter and manner; opinions, as we have shown, that are shared by our contemporaries. The result of Mr. Hudson’s labors is what might have been anticipated. Such sentences as these, in the notices of his successive lectures, tell the whole story : 'a select though not crowded audience ;' his hearers were not as numerous as they should have been ;' there was more quality than quantity in his audience ;' "the fact that his audiences have been small is discreditable to the public,' and so forth. Indeed, Mr. Hudson himself declared, at the close of his last lecture, that he had not succeeded in New-York, (he admits, however, we understand, that there are some good minds' in town!) but he intended to do so, before he died.' We trust he may; but he must first greatly improve himself; a laudable object, to which we learn he intends to devote the ensuing summer. That Mr. Hudson's audiences were “small by degrees and beautifully less,' in this metropolis, was owing to himself entirely. The "once-goers,' as the Germans phrase it, were subsequently very shy. As Count D'Artois said to STEPHEN KEMBLE, when he asked him to repeat his visit to the Edinburgh theatre, to see him play FalstAFF, ‘with which he had been so highly pleased :' Yaas, I was mosh please ; I laugh mosh; yaas, it was good fun; but one soche fun, it is enoff!' And so no more at present,' Mr. Hudson, “from yours' in the bonds of sympathy, • The sagacious and well-gloved Editor of the KNICKERBOCKER.' . .. Weshall be happy to hear from · M.' with facts and proofs' touching his mesmeric revelations. That there is a far-seeing discernment in the spirit, which reaches beyond the scope of our incarnate senses, we can well believe; but how ? -- that is the important question; can our correspondent, or any one else, answer it? We would call the especial attention of our town readers to the course of leetures upon elocution, and the SHAKSPEAREAN readings of Mr. MURDOCH, at the Society Library. The metropolitan journals, we perceive, are unanimous in his praise. We have heard him with unqualified pleasure. He has a pleasant, full voice, an unaffected manner, and possesses an intimate and practical knowledge of his subject and his author. He has attracted large and admiring audiences, who have confirmed the high reputation which preceded his arrival from Boston. ·.

... THERE was found one morning recently, on the floor of our publication-office, doubtless thrust under the door in the evening, the following communication. It was enveloped, first in a hard parchment-like sheet of dingy foolscap, folded end-wise, and sealed with a huge yellow wafer, and again in a wrapper made of an old newspaper, which was tied irregularly around in a • winding way,' with a dirty cotton string. We assure our readers that it is what it purports to be, a veritable production :

MISTER EDITUR: Inclosed you will find a poem, which you are at Liberty to publish, on the sole condition that you will put it in a good place in your Magazin, and not stick it away, in which case your own good Sense will show you niether of us won't be much benefited; and I shall ask no other Recompens for it but a good Consciens -- barely, that you recommend it to the Public, and leave me, say twelve to fifteen copies of the KNICKERBOCKER to the publishing-offis, to send to the friends of the Girl. I send it to you because I am willing to contribute my might and belp on with a Deserving publication; and I have got more of the same stamp; and I assure you, my dear Sir, you shall be thought of fust. I shall publish a volum of Poems, of which this is one. They comprise all subjects, from the Theatrical to the religiously-inclined ; and from the album to the expanded swellings of Oriental beauty. Some are humerous and some are of different metres. Some are of a high grasp, others again are similar if not slightly contrary;. and not one I hope which will not contain some wholesom morel – but Transcendentalism 1 despise. It is that which is breaking the heart of literature of the


present, and ringing tears out of the nostrils of the best spirits of the age. A century ago, if sum of them filosofers had been told of it, they would have said it was a figment; and God help us, if that cloud is to hem up the progress of a national literature, our shipwrek is clus to hand. Excuse me if I speak with too much apparent severity, but not more than they deserve. I sball renew this subject again - and in the meantime I remain, yours,


The poem which was enclosed, was entitled • Sweet Little Susanna,' and ran for a short distance as followeth:

Lamp of my Love! fight of my eye!

My Glory and my banner;
To thee I would take the wings of a dove and fly,
Sweet little SUSANNA!

. My cousin, my rich Lily of the Valley,

I had ought to extol you in a proper manner,
Forgive my enthusiastic muse if it should dally,

Sweet little SUSANNA!

I see you in the town of Jericho last autumn,

'T was but a Glance while the sunbeam was my tanner; I see thee, I did see thee while I was a-sportin,'

Sweet little SUSANNA!

• I see you a-passin' by the sparklin' river;

We had hauled our little boat, and was goin' to man her;
Your glance was like a arrow out of a quiver,

Sweet little SUSANNA!


[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

Here Mr. GREENHAM says: “Turn over; I mean on the other side of the paper, Mr. Editur.' Not being a “hint for a personal movement precisely, we obeyed the direction, and found on a succeeding page much more of the same order of genius, the infliction of which however we withhold for the present. Mr. GREENHAM adds, in a postscript : Your can say sumthin' about the Volum of poems if you think fit in your 'Editur's Table.' This is about the poorest of the hul lot, as I did n't want to injur the sale by publishing the best; and I would n't like to have this pirated; so I think if you can take out a copyright, and give notice underneath in the usual form, it would be good.' Mr. GREENHAM is without a compeer in versification, saving and excepting the composer of the · Adventures in Michigan,' (for which we are indebted to our friend ·W. A. S.,' and concerning which we may have more to say hereafter,) and the writer of the · Valentine,' from which we take these lines:

• I HAVE seen thee in the graceful dance,
And sing, if possible, with still more elegance!
But oh! thy virtues I can trace
In every feature of thy form and face;
Therefore doth all my feelings thus combine,
To you to send this Valentine.
I am in love with you, dearest -
Tell me what it is you foarest!
Tell me, oh! tell me, if your youthful heart
Beatest with generosity to assuage my smart?
What mean that blush and yonder downcast sigh?
What mean the pearly tears that stud thine eye?'

and so forth. We have seen as good grammar as the above in many pieces of verse, but we have seldom encountered such 'poetry' as these lines contain. But to revert to Mr. GREENHAM: we regret to perceive that he is disposed to disparage Transcendentalism. A plain Eastern gentleman, on being asked what this new thing' was, replied: 'I have not the dimmest conception or the remotest idea. I have heard of it, have seen it, have even touched it with gloves; but 'pon my soul, I can't ascertain what it is. In my opinion it is n't.' A correspondent of the Boston Transcript' daily journal has made it obvious to the meanest capacity. Transcendentalism is a state of refined oneness; the glory of gushing dualism, where always the exalted instincts of our inner nature are kept in view; ever exhibiting existence as it should be, as it may be, as in a few beacon-instances, it is: celestial also,

[ocr errors]


[ocr errors]

stalking like a giant of the father-land through the heavens, and making the stars its stepping-stones. “The enlightened student, therefore, discovers transcendentalism to have four phases, and of course to be quarternian and lunar. The first phase is oneness, and this is crescent; the second phase is dualism, and this is semi-circular; the third phase is nature, and this is semi-circular plus; the fourth phase is celestial, and this is circular, and of course lunar. Transcendentalism is then the spiritual satellite of man. In the solemn hour of midnight, when the abstract idea holds its dark sway over the sinking-spirit, its silvery light comes with superhuman radiance, and pours floods of intelligence and glory upon the obscure darkness of an unintelligible picture ! We trust that Mr. GREENHAM will rest satisfied with this lucid exposition of what has hitherto by many persons been somewhat dimly understood. One of the newspapers mentions it as a note-worthy circumstance, that recently at one of the provincial towns in England a "Grand United Funeral Society' celebrated their anniversary with a ball. This is not an usual circumstance. M’lle DESHAYES once danced the Death of Nelson' at the London opera-house, and CRUMMLES' 'infant phenomenon' performed an elegiac-pas with great power and pathos. ::: We have had several communications, evidently from fair correspondents, expressing cordial approbation of the rebuke of Old Bachelorism with which we accompa. nied the ‘Poetical Epistle' of our married contributor, in our last number; and we are desired to pursue the subject,' to 'cry aloud and spare not,' and so forth. Perhaps we cannot better subserve the purposes of our fair friends, than by holding up before the unfortunate class whose obduracy we alike deplore, some of the dangers to which they are exposed. In the first place, they are growing old, and their personal attractions are taking wing. By and by they will be frightful. There was a 'Bachelor's Thermometer' once faithfully kept by the author of "Grimm's Ghost,' to portions of which we now proceed to invite the serious attention of our anti-connubial readers. At thirty-six, he discovers his hair to be growing thin. He buys a bottle of Tricosian Fluid,' but finds it a 'fattering unction.' Thinness of hair increases, awakening serious thoughts of a wig. He meets an old college friend with a thatch' that makes him look “like the devil in a bush,' who mystifies him with the remark that be wears well.' About this time he gives up cricket-playing. The air about the grounds is so bad that he can't run in it, without being out of breath!' He finds some solace for his mortified vanity in the sight of eighteen bald heads in the pit at

* So much the better; the more the merrier.' By this time too he is growing fat: • Tried on an old great-coat, and found it an old little-one. How cloth shrinks !' * Red face putting on shoes, Bought a shoe-horn. Remember quizzing my uncle for using one ; but was then young and foolish.' A year after, he records: 'Several gray hairs in whiskers: all owing to carelessness in manufacture of shaving-soap. Remember thinking my father an old man at thirty-six.' The following year he gives up country-dancing : * Money-musk certainly more fatiguing than formerly. Fiddlers play it too quick! Wondered how sober mistresses of families could allow their carpets to be beaten by quadrilles. Met two school-fellows; both fat and red-faced. Used to say at school that they were both of my age : what lies boys tell! A year elapses : ‘Gout again! That disease certainly attacks young people more than formerly! The next entry is : · Bought a hunting-belt. Braced myself up till ready to burst. Intestines not to be trifled with: threw it aside. Young men now-a-days much too small in the waist. Read in the Times' an advertisement of pills to prevent corpulency:' bought a box. Never the slimmer, though much the sicker.' A growing dislike to the company of young men, all of whom 'talk too much or too little,' succeeds ; until, at the age of forty-nine, with “top of head quite bald,' he resolves “never to marry for any thing but money or rank. A year after, “ the age of wisdom,' he marries his cook. Thereafter he employs some of his leisure in setting forth the folly of an old bachelor who 'struggles against fate, and defies the hours :' “Time sometimes makes his chief inroads upon the face, sometimes upon the figure, and sometimes, like bidders at an auction, in two places at once. When he helps us to fat, the face continues to look young and the body gets old. When he helps us to lean, the body continues to VOL. XXV.


the opera.

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]


[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

look young, and the face gets old. A bulky body is not easily managed; for fat, if dislodged from one station, takes refuge in another; and tight lacing only makes the matter

As Swifs says, 'You lose in coach-hire what you save in wine.' And as to the hair: "Is it not a matter of wonder that all men who wear wigs wear such young ones? How seldom do you see a gray hair in one? This is what the lawyers call “ proving too much.' Ever while you live, 'eye Nature's walks,' and where she has planted gray-ash trees, or cleared the ground by denuding the top of the head, do not fly in her face by ordering home a hyacinthine' thatch,' with one of those curls sometimes called love-locks, and sometimes heart-breakers, playing carelessly over a forehead where the crow has been busily treading beforehand. When a wig is juvenility itself, not a hair of it being out of its teens, the outside of the head will be found in that particular as remote from the age of discretion as the inside of it. The fact is, moreover, patching never does any good. I have seen a dandy trying to rub a stray splash from his Russia-duck trowsers, and thus converting a splash into a smear. A bald head at sixty is worth all the fore-tops in the world. There is nothing like an honest defect. WERE We a painter, the following,

we from a correspondent, would impress us with its capabilities' for a magnificent composition: When that most daring of 'ocean's chivalry,' the discoverer of the Pacific, the renowned Vasco NUNEZ DE BALBOA, had penetrated across the Isthmus of Darien, and stood upon a lofty peak of the Cordilleras, the broad Pacific broke upon his view in all its glory and magnificence. The sun was just rolling up from his ocean-bed, bathing all nature in a flood of light. Around him, in all the freshness and beauty of a southern clime, waved the dark luxuriant forests ; before him lay the vast and boundless ocean, heaving its dark blue waves in lone majesty; and as his eye scanned the wide waste of waters, no white sail, no trace of man met his eye! Nature in all her grandeur and sublimity overpowered his soul; and falling upon his knees, with all his followers, those steel-clad warriors of Spain mingled the noble anthem · Te Deum Laudamus' with the roaring of the surges.' We see it stated in the · Evening Gazette,' a new and wellconducted daily print, that when the fish disappeared from the coast of Norway, in the last century, the circumstance was attributed to inoculation for the small-pox, which had just then been introduced. There was thought to be something very revolting and unnatural, in transferring the humor of a diseased brute beast into the human frame, when the practice was first attempted. Hood in one of his pleasant stories tells us that narratives were gravely repeated and swallowed, of horns that sprouted from human heads; of human feet that hardened into parted hoofs; and of human bodies that became pied or brindled with dappled hair. A maid-of-all-work mentions the imaginary effect of vaccination upon a little girl: ‘I wont speak positive, though some do, to a pair of little knobs of horns that one could just feel under the skin on her forehead. It was moral impossible to keep her out of the fields, and from running about the common, and wading up to her knees in pools of water. She moo'd whenever a cow did, and what's more, in summer time she always had a swarm of flies about her face and ears! She could n't abide scarlet; and when they wanted to put her into a red frock, she tore and butted so with her head, that they were forced to give it up.' We of this era, 'convinced by experience of the beneficial effects of the discovery of JENNER, and consequently wiser in our Jenneration, cannot sympathise with the ludicrous terrors that prevailed when vaccination was a new thing. . . . THERE are rumors of an intended removal by the President of Mr. WASHINGTON IRVING from the post of Minister to the Court of Spain. This report we cannot believe to be well founded If we are not mistaken in the character of Mr. Polk, he will in this case regard rather the reputation of his country than the appeals of partizan office-seekers. The selection of Mr. Irving as ambassador to Spain was not less an honor to the government than to himself; and his recall, at this moment, would reflect no credit upon the President or the country. We perceive, by the way, that an incident like that told of Sir WalTER Scott at the coronation of GEORGE IV. lately occurred to Mr. IRVING. Landing late at night at Gibraltar, the sentinel refused to admit him; whereupon Mr.



Irving handed him his card, with the request that it might be left with the proper authorities, so that in the morning no delay might occur in admitting him. The soldier looked upon the card, and then raising his hat, “Sir,' said he, “are you WASHINGTON Irving of America ? - - are you the author of the “Sketch Book,' and the • Tales of the Alhambra ?"" Mr. Irving replied, in some surprise, 'I am.' • Then,' said the sentinel, ‘ you may enter; I know that I shall be pardoned for admitting you.' Our metropolitan readers have been much more fortunate than ourselves, if they have not often, at places of public resort, experienced the species of annoyance so well set forth in the ensuing lines : WHENEVER the Lees to the theatre stray, In life's onward path it has happened to me The singers who sing, and the players who play, With many a Lawson and many a LEE Attentive, untalkative find 'em;

In parties to mix and to mingle: With sound to allure them, or sense to attract, And somehow, in spite of manæuvres and plans, They rarely turn round till the end of the act, I've found that the LEEs got united in banns, To talk with the party behind 'em.

While most of the Lawsons keep single.



[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

The Lawsons are bent on a different thing : Coy Hymen is like the black maker of rum, E'en Pico may warble, or BORGHESE sing,

De more massa call me, de more I won't come;' To listeners tier above tier :

He flies from the forward and bold : They heed not song, character, pathos or plot, He gives to the coy what he keeps from the kind; But turn back their heads to converse with a knot The maidens who seek him, the maidens who find, Of dandies who lounge in the rear.

Are cast in an opposite mould. SOMEBODY has well hit off the tendency to high-flown language, which is often mentioned as a characteristic of a certain class of our free and enlightened people.' Water, with such persons, is the elemental fluid; a mad dog is a “rabid animal;' a mad bullóan over-driven ox;' a pair of trowsers is the rest’of a person's dress; and a murderer making his exit under a gallows is not hanged; oh! no; he is launched into eternity.' It was doubtless this love of words that led a western editor to denounce a scoundrel who had scuttled and sunk a steamer in one of the harbors of Lake Erie, as a “black-hearted and vile incendiary! -a most magniloquent blunder. · The Poor Man's Friend' is the title of a striking picture in a late number of · Punch.' Death, in a winding-sheet robe, stands by the side of a poor emaciated man, stretched upon a rude cot, scantily covered with a ragged blanket. His hands are clasped imploringly together; the dread messenger has sealed up his eyes forever; and the last expression of deep despair mantles his compressed lips. On the wall hangs a “testimonial' of his good character; a broken spade lies by the side of his bed ; and through the glassless window of the dwelling is seen the • Union work-house.' It is a most affecting picture of a wretch live-broken on misfortune's wheel;' and forcibly illustrates to the eye the touching lines of BURNS:

O DEATH! the poor man's dearest friend,

The kindest and the best,
Welcome the hour my aged limbs

Are laid with thee at rest!
The great, the wealthy, fear thy blow,

From pomp and pleasure torn;
But oh! a blest relief to those

That weary-laden mourn!'

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

The time will come when the wrongs of the masses in monarchical countries, now sentenced to hard labor for the term of their natural lives, will be redressed. 'Surely,' says Punch, there will come a time when the rich and the poor will fairly meet, and have a great human talk upon the matter ; will hold a parliament of the heart, and pass acts that no after selfishness and wrong, on either side, shall repeal. The rich will come, not with cricket-balls or quoits in their bands, to make brotherhood with the poor; but touched with the deep conviction that in this world the lowest created man has a solemn part to play, directed to solemn ends; that he is to be considered and cared for, in his condition, with tenderness, with fraternal benevolence ; that there is something more than alms due from the high to the low; that human sympathy can speak otherwise than by the voice of money; and that too in at once a loftier and a sweeter tone of hope and comforting.' . . . Here is a specimen of • Yankee Cuteness,' given us the other day by a friend who knows how to

« AnteriorContinuar »