BETA

POETRY.

Three small volumes of poetry have just issued from the Scottish
press. The first, by many degrees, in importance, is entitled
Poems, Narrative and Lyrical, by William Motherwell,” the
gentleman of whose genius we lately borrowed the exquisitely
beautiful speciman, entitled “ Jeannie Morrison,” and whom, if
he were not engaged in the arduous duty of editing a thrice-a-
week newspaper (the Glasgow Courier), we might soon expect to
reach a very high rank as a cultivator of the belles lettres in Scot-
land. Mr Motherwell’s volume contains much poetry of a de-
cidedly original stamp, and which must soon press its way into
genral notice. The remaining two volumes are entitled “ The
Desert Lady, by P. Knorb,” and “ The Wandering Bard, and
other Poems,” which last we understand to be the composition of
a Mr Ord. Both of these fairy-looking little tomes appear to us to
give the promise of good fruits in their juvenile authors ; and from
the latter of them we take the liberty of extracting what we con-
sider a very pleasing poem : —

The Winds.

Harp on, ye winds ! in glad content,1
Your hymns on every instrument2
Of rock, and mount, and cave ;3
The trees their joyful notes will bring,4
Each flower, each blade of grass, will sing5
Your measures, glad or grave.6
And not to me alone the songs7
That to your minstrelsy belongs,8
Of joys that never cease ;9
The lonely spring, the quiet stream,10
The lake low murmuring as in dream,11
Have heard your hymns of Peace.12
The nightingale, in sweetest note,13
To you her lone complaint hath brought,14
To you each bird hath sung ;15
The weed-clad tower of ancient time,16
The church-bell’s solitary chime,17
Have join’d your banner’d throng.18
Who, who may tell whence ye arise ?19
In what far region of the skies ?20
In what high forest tree ?21
Ye come as rushing hosts of war,22
As loosen’d cataracts heard afar,23
As thunders of the sea.24
Or fanning round the wild bird’s wing,25
Or by the moon’s cold pathways sing26
Along the milky way ;27
Or through fierce caves and arches high,28
Where Ruin mocks the morning sky,29
Ye woo the love-worn day.30
And whence that influence, dark and dim,31
That wakes the soul’s Æolian hymn32
To measures glad and gay ?33
That breathes unto the midnight hour34
Such spell of mystery and power35
And holds monarchic sway ?36
That makes the Poet weep and sigh,37
That gathers tears in Beauty’s eye,38
And dreams around its head ;39
That, breathed in sounds of awe and fear,40
Doth sing unto crazed lover’s ear,41
Old songs of maiden dead ?42
That treadeth where no foot can go,43
That murmers where no fount can flow,44
Where no proud pennant streams ;45
That to the stars and to the moon46
Doth ever sing a slumbering tune47
The very Queen of Dreams ?48
For ever breathed your hymns of love !49
Ye called the laurel-seeking dove50
Out from the foundering ark ;51
Ye came to Ruth among the corn,52
Singing of distant lands forlorn53
Beyond the waters dark.54
Ye waved the rushes o’er the brow55
Of Moses, when the lady saw56
God’s chosen nod his head ;57
Ye caught the stir of Jordan’s sea,58
To Israel’s king ye sang in glee59
Ere Absalom was dead.60
Ye speak to us of human life !61
One hour of calm, one hour of strife,62
Now bright, now dark your form !63
At more ye sing to tree and flower,64
The evening hears your tread of power,65
And trembles in the storm.66
Ye speak of human life ! Ye go,67
We know not where—ye have a flow68
Wilder than ocean wave ;69
Heaven scarce can hold ye, and the bound70
Of earth knows not your various sound71
More than the secret grave.72
Ye speak of human life ! now high,73
Like thunder-clouds, ye brave the sky,74
Now sleep ye by the streams ;75
Ye are like the earthquakes roaring wild,76
And then make music, as a child77
That singeth in its dreams.78
Away, my fancies ! even now79
I feel no more upon my brow80
The mountain-breezes fall :81
The stars are out, and I must go82
Down to my quiet home below,83
Among the poplars tall.84
And I, whilst dreaming in my bed,85
Will list your dirges o’er my head86
And think ye sing to me,87
And dream that I have wings like you,88
To fan the locks on heaven’s clear brow,89
And roll unchain’d and free.90