Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB

confined, and I must pass over much of the conversation which ensued, only repeating one or two things that struck me more than the rest. Being the day we were about to quit Rome, we were compelled, however much against our inclination, to shorten this interesting interview. Madame Letitia kindly and flatteringly pressed us to stay, until she was informed that we were actually going to start that afternoon from Rome. She then commissioned me to say a thousand affectionate things to Lady D. Stuart, and charged me to tell her that she ardently hoped she would come and pay her a visit in the ensuing winter; adding, with a tone and manner that I shall never forget, so profound and mournful was the impression it made upon me: “ Je vous en prie dites a ma chere Christine que je suis seule ici.” Madame Letitia, whose quick and penetrating eye nothing could easily escape, detected immediately the expression of surprise that passed over my countenance, and proceeded to explain to me, that, in consequence of strong representations from very high quarters, the pope had insisted upon the withdrawal of those of her children who yet resided there with her, from Rome; and that she was thus deprived of the greatest and truest source of comfort and happiness which remained to her at her advanced period of life, the society and affectionate attentions of her beloved family.

There was something in her manner of relating this that inexpressibly touched me; a keen sense of wrong appeared to mingle with a dignified patience and a noble fortitude and resignation, and I felt, as I looked upon her and listened to her, that I indeed saw before me one who had deeply learned the painful lessons of life, who had learned to “suffer and be still.But it were in vain to attempt to describe the solemn sadness of her words and manner, when, looking round her with an expression of desolate sorrow in her fine, large, dark eyes, she concluded her recital with the pathetic exclamation of, “ Et je suis seule! Je suis seule ici !" All the circumstances that combined to impress the mind: the spot we were standing on, “ Rome, the City of the Soul,” the Eternal City of the Past, and of the Dead! rendered this mournful exclamation, pronounced, as it was, in a voice of the deepest emotion, more profoundly affecting than any thing I ever heard before or since; and never will that melancholy tone, or those melancholy words, be effaced from my memory while I live. In the course of the conversation, which was begun in French, I discovered that Madame Letitia's knowledge of that language was considerably impaired, but yet she appeared to wish to continue conversing in it, though, every now and then, Mademoiselle Meline translated to her in Italian what we said, and she herself occasionally concluded a sentence in that sweet language. Most cordial, most courteous, and most kind, were Madame Letitia's adieux to us, I felt, that in all human probability I should never again behold that fine, expressive, intellectual and venerable countenance; and that consciousness shed a redoubled and sorrowful interest over those moments. The Mother of Napoleon, he,

The greatest, nor the worst of men,”

is now no more.

THE NIGHT WATCH AT SEA.

BY MISS LYDIA B. SMITH.

'Tis night! he walks the silent deck with slow and mea

sured tread, Moonlight is silvering the white sails which gleam above

his head; Now gazing on the waters, now on Heaven's high, starry

dome, But his whole soul is far away, in his own island home. He scarcely heeds the mighty waves, which lash the ves

sel's side; His gallant ship, which bounds along, and walks her path

of pride, Ah! many a league she'll bear him on, to many a foreign

strand, But none will seem so fair to him as his own native land. Brave youthful heart ! how glorious in the hour of strife

or storm To mark thy dauntless bearing thenthy proud and manly

form : But all is still and peaceful now, no foeman’s step is nigh, And thou may’st breathe a sigh to love, to hope, and

memory. Lone watcher on the midnight deep, what are thy musings

now? Thine arms are folded on thy breast, thought shades thine

open brow; Not that, the withering shadow by regret or sorrow cast, Thy solitary watch is cheer'd by visions of the past.

The scenes of festal light and song, the music and the

mirth Which thy young ardent spirit felt, made paradise of

earth; The words which fell like melody from lips thy heart held

dear, The sweet soft voices of the loved now haunt thy dream

ing ear. Thou’rt musing on thy glad return, thy mother's fond

caress

The thronging friends who crowd around, to welcome and

to bless ; The gentle arms which will entwine thee in affection's

clasp, And kindred hands to seek thine own in frank and cordial

grasp. And if there be one dearer still, whose changing cheek

grows pale For thy loved sake, when tempests rave, and howls the

wintry gale, Is it not sweet to think of her at this lone hour of night, When fancy's spell has call’d her back in beauty to thy

sight? A thousand miles across the deep, he leans against the

mast, And recollections fond and true are rushing on him fast; He thinks upon the beaming eyes which wept at his fare

well;

When will their joyous brightness greet him home? ah!

who can tell ?

Sailor! thine is a busy life; adventures strange and wild Waking the soul's high energies, await the ocean's child; Rock'd to his slumbers by the storm, bold nursling of the

wave, A plank divides him from his doom—the sleeper from his

grave!

These, his lone vigils, have a charm with pensive pleasure

fraught, Remembrance hovers o'er the past, and fascinates his

thought; Now may fond prayers and blessings, borne by every

passing breeze, Mark thy career with hope's soft light, young wanderer on

the seas.

Oh, England, happy England ! joyful mother of a race Who, 'mongst the nations first and best, assert thine

honour'd place; Long may thy noble sons thy proud supremacy maintainQueen of the billows and the foam, fair empress of the

main !

LONDON MISNOMERS.

BY JAMES SMITH, ESQ.

ONE OF THE AUTHORS OF

REJECTED ADDRESSES.

From Park Lane to Wapping, by day and by night,

I've many a year been a roamer,
And find that no lawyer can London indict,

Each street, every lane 's a misnomer.

« AnteriorContinuar »