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Whatever excites the mind into a state of fervor, whatever powerfully awakens the feelings, is listened to and applauded. It may be vague, fantastic, and shapeless, produced by a sort of extemporaneous effort, and sent abroad without the labor of revision. It will not have the less chance of becoming, for a time at least, popular. The press was never more prolific than at present. A great deal is written, and, as might be naturally supposed, much is written in haste. The mass of popular literature is swelling to an overgrown bulk ; but much of it is crude, coarse, and immature. Mr Bryant has not been seduced by the temptations to slovenliness and negligence, which the age holds out to view; but, on the contrary, he affords a happy specimen of genuine, classical English. We are gratified to meet with such examples, 'especially among the distinguished and favored poets of our own country. It. augurs well for the interests of taste and letters.

We cannot express in too strong terms our approbation of the moral and devotional spirit, that breathes from all, which Mr Bryant writes. Poetry, which is conversant with the deeper feelings of the heart, as well as the beautiful forms of outward nature, has, we conceive, certain affinities with devotion. It is connected with all our higher and holier emotions, and should send out an exalting, a healing, and sustaining influence. We are pleased to find such an influence pervading every strain, uttered by a poet of so much richness of fancy, of so much power and sweetness, as Mr Bryant. No sentiment or expression ever drops from him, which the most rigid moralist would wish to blot. His works we may put into the hands of youth, confident, that in proportion as they become familiar with them, the best sympathies of their nature will be strengthened, and the moral taste be rendered more refined and delicate. Much of bis poetry is description ; but his descriptions are fitted to "instruct our piety,' and impart a warmth and glow of moral feeling.

We hasten to one or two extracts, as contained in the volume before us. "The Murdered Traveller'is picturesque, affecting, and solemn. The scene is portrayed with a distinctness, which

a causes the heart to shudder.

When Spring to woods and wastes around,

Brought bloom and joy again ;
The murdered traveller's bones were found,

Far down a narrow glen.

The fragrant birch, above him, hung

Her tassels in the sky ;
And many a vernal blossom sprung,

And nodded, careless, by.
The red bird warbled, as he wrought

His hanging nest o'erhead,
And fearless near the fatal spot,

Her young the partridge led.
But there was weeping far away,

And gentle eyes, for him,
With watching many an anxious day,

Grew sorrowful and dim.
They little knew, who loved him so,

The fearful death he met,
When shouting o'er the desert snow,

Unarmed, and hard beset.
Nor how, when round the frosty pole

The northern dawn was red,
The mountain wolf and wild cat stole

To banquet on the dead.
Nor how, when strangers found his bones,

They dressed the hasty bier,
And marked his grave with nameless stones,

Unmoistened by a tear.
But long they looked, and feared, and wept,

Within his distant home;
And dreamed, and started as they slept,

For joy that he was come.
So long they looked—but never spied

His welcome step again,
Nor knew the fearful death he died

Far down that narrow glen. pp. 9, 10. We need not point out to those, who are familiar with the appearance of our forests in spring, the exquisite truth and beauty of the two lines,

The fragrant birch, above him, hung

Her tassels in the sky;' which occur in the second stanza. Such minute and inimitable beauties are scattered over every page of this author's narrative andd escriptive poetry. They go to show his careful observation

of nature, which we consider one of his striking characteristics, and which constitutes one point of resemblance between him and Cowper. We add, it is his habit of minute and diligent observation, which renders his pictures so purely. American. His descriptions have a definite locality. They apply to American scenery, and to no other.

The · Hymn’ is a rich offering of the fancy and heart. The following are the introductory lines.

The groves were God's first temples. Ere man learned
To hew the shaft, and lay the architrave,
And spread the roof above them,-ere he framed
The lofty vault, to gather and roll back
The sound of anthems; in the darkling wood,
Amidst the cool and silence, he knelt down
And offered to the Mightiest, solemn thanks
And supplication. For his simple heart
Might not resist the sacred influences,
That, from the stilly twilight of the place,
And from the gray old trunks that high in heaven
Mingled their mossy boughs, and from the sound
Of the invisible breath that swayed at once
All their green tops, stole o'er him, and bowed
His spirit with the thought of boundless power
And inaccessible majesty. Ah, why
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. Let me, at least,
Here, in the shadow of this aged wood,
Offer one hymn—thrice happy, if it find

Acceptance in his ear. We assure our readers, that much of what Mr Bryant has contributed to the present collection, is as good as that we have here offered them. We will not undertake to point out passages of the greatest beauty. The true lover of poetry will be at no loss in discovering them.

Of Mr Percival, who, next to Mr Bryant, is the largest contributor, less needs be said here, as we have in the preceding pages of our present number spoken somewhat at length concerning him. He has copiousness, we may say exuberance, both of matter and words; a rich and excursive imagination, which delights to revel amid gorgeous and airy forms of beauty ; and often throws off lines of great vigor and sweetness. He has

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happy moments of inspiration, and with more labor of revision, with greater willingness to reject what serves only to embarrass the

sense, and more care in selecting from the wilderness of thick coming fancies' only what is adapted to his purpose, he

, might exert a magic influence over our hearts. His narratives are apt to be overloaded or perplexed. The consequence is, the attention is encumbered or distracted, and the impression weakened. His contributions to this volume, as well as his other works, bear the stamp of true genius, but show too frequent marks of carelessness in the execution.

After all, Mr Percival's poetry is of a fascinating character. Amid his negligent versification, his wildness and redundance, he has strains of surpassing beauty. The pieces he has contributed to the present collection bear the characteristic traits of his genius, though they are not chargeable with all the faults, which disfigure some of his larger productions. Several of them are lofty and beautiful creations.

· The Graves of the Patriots,' though not altogether faultless in expression, contains bursts of genuine and exalted feeling. The sines on · Spring' are gay and airy, and the progress of the Zephyr fancifully described. The Desolate City' is fearfully impressive. Of the piece entitled, “Painting-a Personification, we give the opening and concluding parts.

One bright sunshiny autumn day,
When the leaves were just beginning to fade,
I saw a gay and laughing maid
Stand by the side of a public way.
There she stood erect and tall ;
Her flowery cheek had caught the dyes
Of the earliest dawn-and O! her eyes,
Not a star that shoots or flies,
But those dark eyes outshine them all.
She stood with a long and slender wand,
With a tassel of hair at its pointed tip;
And fast as the dews from a forest drip,
When a summer shower has bathed the land,
So quick a thousand colors came,
Darting along like shapes of flame,
At every turn of her gliding hand.
She gave a form to the bodiless air,

And clear as a mirrored sheet it lay;
VOL. XXII.-NO. 51.

56

And phantoms would come and pass away,
As her magical rod was pointed there.
First, the shape of a budding rose,
Just unfolding its tender leaf;
Then, all unbound its virgin zone,
Full in its pride and beauty blown,
It heavily hangs like a nodding sheaf;
And a cloud of perfume around it flows.

Now for the touch of a master hand-
See! how she poises and waves her wand,
As if in a dream of busy thought
She sought for visions and found them not.
Now it rises—and look—what power
Springs to life, as she lifts her rod-
Is it a hero, or visible god,
Or bard in his rapt and gifted hour ?
What a lofty and glorious brow,
Bent like a temple's towering arch,
As if that a wondering world might march
To the altar of mind, and kneel and bow ;-
And then what a deep and spirited eye,
Quick as a quivering orb of fire,
Changing and shifting from love to ire,
Like the lights in a summer evening sky ;-
Then the living and breathing grace
Sent from the whole of that magic face,
The eloquent play of his lips, the smile
Sporting in sunbeams there awhile,
Then with the throb of passion pressed
Like a shivering leaf that cannot rest,—
And still as a lake when it waits a storm,
That wraps the mountain's giant form,
When they lie in the shade of his awful frown,
And his gathered brows are wrinkled down.
Such the visions that breathe and live,
The playful touch of her wand can give.

pp. 116, 117, 120, 121. The beauty of the above extract is marred by occasional slovenliness of execution. We refer particularly to the description of the changing expression of the lips, in the last eight or ten lines, which is clumsy and perplexed.

Among Mr Percival's other pieces, “The Last Song of the

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