The Thrashing Floor in New Zealand Minstrelsy
- The forest grounds converting to fertile fields of grain,
/ Though blacken’d stumps, the ghosts of bygone times, may remain.
Stanzas, To a Young Poet in New Zealand Minstrelsy
- Go on! and may you prosper in your sphere,
/ But mark attentive, e’er ye’ve gone afar,
/ Lest Envy should in unawares appear
/ Against thy hopes and prospects waging war,
/ Employing all, thy progress to debar:—
/ Why should I on such themes of grievance dwell?
/ Be stirr’d!—let no despondence e’er thee mar,
/ Aim to improve, as ye aspire t’excell;—
/ Be virtue’s friend! and Heav’n will bless thy muse.—
A Bushranging in New Zealand Minstrelsy
- While woodlands encumbered, for ages unnumbered,
/ Must to their bold enterprize ever give way.
Canto Fifth in The New Zealand Survey
- so that virtue well might reign
/ The source of all prosperity and peace!
/ The ultimate design of providence
/ In peopling earth, subduing desert wilds,
/ Is now in progress; where a clearing’s formed,
/ A good beginning’s seen, prelusively
/ Of happier events to be brought forth,
/ Though still in future hid; as harvests good,
/ Of plenteous return, are the results
/ Of industry in spring; so future things
/ Indicative of great events to come
/ In the still further future, are results
/ Of small beginnings buried in the past!
/ Thus ev’ry humble effort that’s put forth
/ In such a wilderness, to make a home,
/ That effort bears its own proportion to
- The nativestoo, are happy and at peace,
/ Where terror once had reigned! (5) With heart and hand
/ Appreciating civilization’s lore,
/ To their new friends they bid God-speed, and join
/ Improvement’s march—all zealous to pursue
/ Th’ advantages held out, “a worthy prize,”
/ The more contested for, the more esteemed!—
- ’Tis by the work of a progressive toil,
/ Which perseverance only must maintain,
/ Ere to account this forest land is turned:
/ Long has it shaded been by lofty trees
/ From th’ influence of the sun! Nor has it been
/ Yet subject to the cultivator’s skill
/ For use; but lying waste, it has brought forth
/ Aught, save what may of civilized life,
/ Or human comfort tell!
- When, over all, in universal sway
/ Shall peace and plenty mutually reign!
/ However such a state may be desired,
/ ’Tis but as embryo—imperfect yet,
/ And will be, through a long progressive stage,
/ Until that time appointed has arrived!
/ But as at first, “the earth must be subdued!”
/ So the command is still imperative
/ For ev’ry such a country, wild as this,
/ Through generations all, as the first step
/ Of man’s advancement to a higher sphere;
/ While, even there, his rudimental task
/ Begins,—but who can tell where such may end!
- Though these surrounding scenes, where’er the eye
/ Of observation turns, have undergone
/ Great revolutions buried in the past:
/ Another of importance yet awaits;
/ Nay, is it not in progress even now?—
/ It is not always revolutions come
/ With sudden change, as of an earthquake’s shock;
/ Or, as in politics, when discontent,
/ Through insurrection, long in secret hatched,
/ Bursts forth in civil war, o’erturning all
- Yon majestic trees,
/ Which have for ages stood the stormy blast,
/ Are destined soon to feel the settlers axe,
/ And by it be laid prostrate, as they are
/ Considered now mere cumbrers of that ground
/ He means to turn to fields of growing grain;
/ A noble change indeed! Thus nature wild
/ Must wear another aspect, feel renewed
/ With civilization introduced, where once
/ The wildest solitudes supremely reigned!
- For bygone ages had their times of change,
/ Preparatory to some future plan
/ To be accomplished in its season due;
/ And, as the earth has first to be subdued
/ Ere man, its lord, can bring it to his use;
/ So now a mighty change is passing o’er
/ Those scenes; however slow may be its course,
/ Its progress, like the stealthy steps of time,
/ Is certain, with improvements in its train,
/ To tame this once unbroken wilderness
/ Of savage grandeur!
- Cook’s visit was the prelude to a new,
/ Though seeming distant, era, in their page
/ Of blotted hist’ry, hitherto a blank,
/ As cut off from all knowledge of the world,
/ And social arts of peace!
- At early morn, as they’d through custom sit,
/ Wrapped in their shaggy mats, upon the beach,
/ With vacant gaze on the horizon’s bound,
- As ’mid the revolution of events,
/ Old Nature’s aspect wild must be transformed,
/ And fresh resources be developed, where
/ Such seemingly once no existence had!
/ So now we see the work of bliss begun,
/ Appearances display a wonderous change
- That ancient who (3)
/ Of late departed life,—who in his youth
Signs of the Times in 1853 in The New Zealand Survey
- ’Tis their calling: as it calls
/ New arguments to work upon
/ Our unaccustomed thoughts, whereon
/ We have not yet consider’d,—hence
/ We’re forced to follow in the dance;
/ Or else gulp down, what we might puke,
/ If wrong we for the right mistook;—
/ True!—thus we by experience
/ Are made to learn, or gather sense,
/ For future guidance in the art
/ Of Government;—
- May we not yet be quite the dab
/ In all such lore, as th’ A B, AB
/ We soon shall master; and besides,
/ Whate’er on ev’ry hand betides,
/ From the examples of th’ adept,
/ If but we’re wide awake t’ accept
/ Such lessons freely given,—which
/ Might to our understandings reach
/ More easily, than what is taught
/ By precepts, howe’er much they’re fraught
/ With cunning erudition;—so,
/ However much accounted slow
/ In former progress, we may gain
/ A march upon our masters; fain
/ To shew ourselves no longer dunces,
/ Nor yet be subject to the bounces
/ Of the more pert,—or more impert’nent!
/ Than we’re by nature, though intent
/ To learn the right, and how discry
/ The evils to be shunn’d:—
In Memorium in The New Zealand Survey
- So cease invective! pour not out your rage
/ Of venom’d malice on his memory now:
/ Because in less enlighten’d times his lot
/ Had been forsooth, while many virtues lived
/ Within his heart, which had been better known
/ Had he enjoyed th’ improvements of this age!
Canto Second in The New Zealand Survey
- progression’s nature, in the arts
/ Of life, so beneficial for mankind!—
/ Yea, all revealing to th’ mind
/ The ways of Providence,—how He pourtrays
/ On this, or other mind of chosen ones
/ Some problem to be solved, if not in full,
/ Yet partly, as their finitude can reach!—
/ Thus such inventions shewn, either for power
/ Concentrated, much weakness to assist;
/ Or such as would out-strip the lightning’s speed;
/ Bespeak great blessings, making due descent
/ In course of time, and calculated all
/ For lessening oppressions griefs and groans
/ And aiding to the happiness of man!
- So here displayed
/ Are num’rous products of the human mind,
/ All proving immortality in man!
/ In such an active principle evolves
/ A struggling strife to rise to something great!
/ Thus stern endeavours to achieve a name
/ Cause many works to be produced, ordained
/ By providence to benefit the race
/ Of man, in his progression from a low
/ To higher state of being, upon earth.
/ Such works, results of lab’ring thoughts, while hands
- Of Fame’s proud temple poets oft have sung
/ According as their minds have been impress’d
/ By fancy’s sunbeam tissues, which pourtray’d,
/ In all its loveliness, the holy Fane;
/ As if each would his part of prophecy
/ In hierogliphic lore pronounce, though that,
/ In its reality, he but conceived
/ A shrine of treasured virtues and good deeds.
/ So is not this Fame’s temple, where transformed
/ To something real, in sublimity,
/ Are various thoughts? as one a structure rears
/ Of gross materials, wherewithall to match
/ Some preconceived design; a building fair
/ Of mystic structure, active minds have plann’d
/ As emblematic of some charming scene,
/ Which gladly they’d enjoy; and where converse
/ With those of worth, whose kindred one would claim,
/ Or there admire their works!
- industry’s progression will declare,
/ How the rude mattock primitively used
/ To till the ground, has moulded been to ploughs,
/ Thus bringing bestial labour to assist
/ In time of need! The sickle too must yield
/ To other strange contrivances to reap
/ The ripened grain, where much of toil is saved!
/ In means of war, the sling was reckoned once
/ A grand discovery to assist the arm
/ In hurling stones against a coming foe;
/ Next came the archer, and with his long bow
- Whatever scheme on which the mind’s engaged
/ In active labour to unfold its web
/ Of intricacies, while the attempt is made,
/ With failure often meeting, yet that scheme
Canto Second in The New Zealand Survey
- So here, though clothed in Nature’s vernal robes
/ This scene delightful, calling forth our praise,
/ And admiration, still, all speak of change
/ And revolutions buried in the past;
/ But which oblivion fails such things to veil,
/ Though such might ’scape the less enquiring eye
/ That doats on beauty, willing to admire!
- No pursuit
/ Of hardy whaler had they then to fear!
/ They liv’d their natural life time out with joy!
- Now looking round contemplating the scene
/ As it before me lies—combined with what
/ Is farther known, more than is here discerned:—
/ All speak of revolutions in the past!
Canto Third in The New Zealand Survey
- Such roused thee from thy peace, thy dormant state
/ In deep immersion; ’twas a warning note
/ That grumbled out “PREPARE!—Thy time is come
/ That thou must meet some transformations new,
/ And be exalted to the cheering light,
/ Preparatory to more active scenes
- It must be clothed with all such requisites
/ That can be called attractive, and conduce
/ To welfare, in a future time ordained,—
/ (So far as elemental weal’s concerned
/ Consistent with the curse which hangs o’er earth,
/ With much of mercy, undeserved attached!)—
/ In genial clime, as capable to yield
/ Much paradisian cheer, when well prepared!
/ Since man, where’er he dwells, must earn by toil
/ His living—thus himself declaring far
/ Above the brute capacity of life,
/ And owning a dependence on the care
/ Of bounteous Providence—he must exert
/ Th’ endowments of his reason, and his skill,
/ As talents in his care to be improved;
/ Thus earning happiness, such as the earth
/ Has in its power to yield; though he must rove
/ To seek his welfare, or another home,
/ As prompted by his emigrating will;
/ Or love of acquisition in a part
/ Of Nature’s earth, that he can call his own!
- Now, th’ ancient world, when from the depths of nought
/ It rose to being by the great command
/ Which called it forth, as when an infant’s born;
/ It had progressive stages, and its times
/ Of revolutionary changes, meet
/ For growing to maturity,
- And in the nature of His bounteous grace,
/ He called these islands forth, as to prepare
/ New scenes of active life, and stud this field
/ Of emptiness with other scenes of bliss,
/ In fruitful lands, as might outvie the north
/ With all its bulk of continental shores!
- A fearful hasty rocking to and fro,
/ Awhile most violently driven, occurs
/ With an unwonted energy; and next
/ Transverse as fiercely; then with sudden twist
/ And circular motion;—as if one, whose grasp
/ Had hold on thee, and loosening thy base
/ Most deeply fixed beneath, as with a turf
/ He with much force would loosen from its bed
/ Ere such he pulls;—while heavings strange are felt,
/ As when ’tis said of yore, old Atlas hove
/ His mighty load, with strenuous effort oft,
/ Ere he its weight upon his shoulders poised!
/ Rocks burst assunder! with commotions dire;
/ While various orders ’gainst each other crashed,
/ And shattered into fragments, got commixed
/ In wild confusion, jostled to a strange
/ And mutilated heterogeneous mass
/ Of various sorts; all meanwhile much upturned
/ And sideways shoved by that explosive force
/ Employed to urge the hollows downside up
/ Them sending towering far above the waves!
/ Amid such breaking up of solids, and
/ The transformations passing o’er the scene,
/ Old ocean, smitten, raged with furious storm,
/ Aye, fiercer than when roused by boisterous gales;
/ Then waves no longer followed, as in chase,
/ Each other, tossing sportively their spray
/ As they before the breeze would scud along;
/ But, billows met with billows, all deranged
- By what might hap, to man’s short sighted views
/ With judgment much awry, yet deeds are done
/ By agents strange t’effect some purpose good
/ Which to another could not trusted be:
/ And when such act, as their commission runs
/ So to the letter is the task fulfilled,
/ Though mountains must be levelled, or the plains
- The earth’s deep centre with its magazine
/ Of great resistless powers, proves a reserve
/ To finish what’s begun; which, when desired,
/ Gives forth its energies to crown the work—
/ Which nothing but omnipotence can do!—
/ As man would prove his edifice complete,
/ By having raised the copestone to its place!
/ That powerful word, which issues promp behest,
/ Has agencies as powerful to perform!
- so thus combined
/ The builders in their energies, which tend
/ All to one given point, according to
/ The method of their work, as by behest;
/ The plan’s incorporated in their lives
/ As instinct, with no other knowledge theirs,
/ To make them run erratic from their toils
/ But give adherence faithfully to the end,
/ While forming rocky structures from the brine!
/ Though generations, as they build, may die
/ And in their works their bodies leave entombed
/ To petrify, (brave architects indeed!
/ They build their own mausoleum of fame!)—
/ Yet each, succeeding, takes the matter up
/ Where the preceeding left it, carrying on
/ The great design unaltered, till complete
/ It gains the water’s surface, and is stayed!
/ As they, to wherefores asked, would thus reply—
/ “Thus far no further our commission runs,
- As mighty revolutions have occurred,
/ In ages long anterior to man,
/ And are transpiring even in his day,
/ So who can mark that finger which directs
/ In their occurrence, guiding to their end?
/ Or hear the fiat which commands them forth?
/ Him, whom all nature owns as sovereign Lord,
/ Whose word brought forth creation from the abyss
/ Of nothingness, reared high the ancient hills
/ Ere man was called to being; Him whose power
/ As efficacious now, as then, remains;
/ Yes, Him all nature readily obeys,
/ His plans beneficient will execute
/ For future good, by quick or slow degrees
/ As the appointments given!
- Thus at the first when the Almighty called
/ Earth from its nothingness, ’twas but a mass
/ Of heterogenous matter,—yet ’twas “Good!”
/ In its first stage of being, as the base
/ On which improvements might be still enlarged
/ In their respective periods; so with each
/ Fair isle, when it was to existence called.
- Thus, ocean’s made give birth t’another isle,
/ In time, to be inhabited by man!
/ Yes, still in time, at some great future date!
- The coral rock
/ By such a power asunder can be rent
/ And driven to confusion, much commixed
/ With its foundation, upward turned, upheaved
/ As ’twere, to view the sky! That mighty power
/ Thus held in readiness to work His will
/ Who wills it, can the earth’s foundations shake;
/ Which, made convulsive, labours as in birth
/ Until it heaves with dread explosion high,
/ The once inverted sea-bed, ’bove the clouds,
/ As a stupendous mountain in its height,
/ With ranges branching forth in other hills
/ With many a plain between, extending far!—
- The coral worms
/ May rear their structures to a given height
/ And there must leave them, till some other means
/ The sequel form of what was first begun.
Advertisement to the Crystal Palace in The New Zealand Survey
- though living, I may say, at the ends of the earth, I yet feel a deep and lively interest in whatever takes place in father-land, when the object of the movement or occurrence tends (or is so meant) to the great and beneficial advancement of man in his social capacity.
- I could not but regard the project of the great exhibition, with some admiration, feeling convinced that its ultimate results might lead to great moral revolutions, all tending to the welfare of the human family at large.
A Retrospective Reverie. — On receiving the “Hamilton Advertiser” a provincial newspaper, sent from “Home,” 1859 in The New Zealand Survey
- Now other names I read, than those
/ I left, which tell of change, consigning
/ Some to the dust!—Some gone t’ explore
/ Earth’s utmost bounds,—some frail and hoar
/ I left in prime, with strength combining!
- As garden’s rich
/ By dint of science, still progressing;
- All such small villages of old
/ In public scarce had got a footing;
/ Now in this “Advertiser;” these
/ Have got a voice
- Well, bless improvement’s work, I say,
/ Though there I’d look a lonely stranger;
/ And may prosperity attend
/ The people!—The most High defend
/ Them, from all ills that might endanger
/ Their social happiness!
- Would time and space allow! For lo!
/ Those towns which erst had small probation,—
/ For instance, Shots, Curluke, Belshill,
/ And Motherwell,—all with good will,
/ Seem aiming at a higher station!
/ With Airdrie and Coatbridge, they may
/ Soon equal, with their works enlarging!—
/ Thus hamlets have to boroughs grown,
/ With civic honours of their own,
/ While most important trusts discharging!
- My heart rejoices in the thought
/ That all are active in progression!—
- And those soirees of Sunday Schools,
/ Detailed within this “Advertiser,”
/ While reading such, I feel as there,
/ And learn in happy smiles this pray’r,
/ “Oh! let the rising race grow wiser
- The mind, which fondly would be winging
/ Back to old haunts, as to enjoy
/ Again those scenes thus long forsaken:—
/ Now glad to learn of changes fair
/ Which time has wrought, with tasteful care
/ Upon them, if I’m not mistaken.
To a Mountain Daisy in The New Zealand Survey
- nobler energies may all
/ Be roused to efforts more to shine
/ In glorious enterprize; as up
/ To rise above what tends to pain;
Preface in The New Zealand Survey
- with no small interest too can we regard the approach of Enterprize and Industry, each, as with bridegroom integrity, come to divest Nature of those solitary weeds in which she has long been arrayed, in order to deck her with the garb of art, thereby adding fresh beauties to her native comeliness!
- Such “Knights exemplar” are, as it were, bringing up the rear of the human race, who have fallen far behind in the general march of improvement, that they too at the grand review may be present, and so be included as fellow-sharers in the approval of the “Supreme Inspector,” and also be united with their more privileged brethren in the bonds of Peace! In this, may not the finger of Providence be seen guiding to the desired end!
The Two Guides in The New Zealand Survey
- How true it is, that rising youth
/ Progressing needs a wise adviser;
/ One who is earnest for the truth,
/ And is no false or vain enticer.
/ But two attendants ready are,
/ And each against the other striving,
/ As each the youth would lead with care
/ In their own beaten paths, contriving
/ How to supplant each other:
Canto Fourth in The New Zealand Survey
- Recalling now our thoughts to other scenes,
/ That speak of progress, be it e’er so slow,
/ From rude beginnings, to developments
/ Of great acheivements, Nature in her aims
/ Effected have along the course of time.
- As one returns from a protracted tour
/ ’Mid foreign climes, and hails his boyhood’s home,
/ Recounting many changes, all for good,
/ That has occurred since when he left, in truth,
/ Impressing much his heart with hallowed joy;
- But much of time, in all external things
/ Concerning nature, or regarding man,
/ Must speak of change; as pleasures fresh arise,
/ They’ve but their space allotted to give joy;
/ Beyond that space are weariness and cares!
- So Nature’s loveliness—her first debut—
/ Has also got its time glass, where the sands
/ In constant running order soon may cease,
/ And shew her liable to other change!
/ The change, no matter when it may occur—
/ To-morrow—or, may hap, a thousand years—
/ Yet still ’twill come, and so perform its work,
/ Inductive to some future good, although
/ Its aspect ruinous might such deny!
- So see this valley, as it now exists
/ In all its native grandeur, cov’ring much
/ Of elemental rudeness with the garb
/ Of vernal beauty; it can tell its tale
/ (Ev’n so of others may the same be said)
/ Of mighty revolutions undergone,
/ As marvellous as when above the waves
/ Yon mountain summits rose and stood on high.
- When “Scrutiny” begins to look around
/ Contemplative, he fails not to descry,
/ How the appointed agencies of change
/ Have had their mystic fingers in the work
/ Of revolutions great!
- other plants and herbage in their kinds,
/ Which might have ends assigned, to be fulfilled
/ Progressively, initiating new,
/ And hitherto unknown, earth’s faculties
/ Productive of fresh vegetable life!
- These brought forth
/ At their appointed seasons—each in turn—
/ As one preparing, in its own decay,
/ The elements that aids another’s growth!
/ So time its revolutions has performed;
/ The ravages of storms have done their part;
/ When forest trees matured, have been o’erthrown
/ To moulder into dust, and so prepare
/ For others to succeed.
- But change has passed his hand o’er all this scene,
/ As one obliterates writings on the sand;
/ Save such small vestiges remaining, which
/ Reminds one of the softest whisper made
/ When a great secret’s told, and scarcely heard!
- Such shews how Nature’s work has been fulfilled
/ ’Mid change and revolution, since the time
/ Its ground was occupied by briny floods,
/ Or since the simple moss was all that grew!
- As seasons came and went, with changing times,
/ The moss and rushes grew, and in their turn
/ Decayed and moulder’d down, but more t’ increase
An Ode on Manawatu in The New Zealand Survey
- Long, long have those plains been enveloped in glooms—
/ That gloom of lone solitudes dreary and wild;
/ Though nature’s prolific in much that presumes
/ On richness, yet here every pleasure seem’d foiled,
/ For want of that culture, inhabitants bring
/ With them so enlightening, whence blessings accrue;
/ May soon thy time come of good change, when will spring
/ New beauties around thee, lone Manawatu!
Canto First in The New Zealand Survey
- each wild scene’s progression to that state
/ It now assumes; or what was once obscure,
/ Made plain, by what appearances declare!
- May not these (1)
/ Cascades of solitude, which long have spent
/ Their force in vain, as having none to guide,
/ Be brought in requisition yet, to aid
/ Laborious enterprize; or be the scene
/ Of lively industry, in busy mills
/ Engaged in various labours, as the source
/ Of inward wealth?
- hid from view in lonely solitudes
/ Untrod by man; but yet the time will come
/ When such must be explored, when enterprize
/ Fresh scope demands!
- Thus where the waters have scooped furrows deep
/ In cultivated soil, as well as where
/ The river’s banks are broke, like some wild freak
/ Of Nature’s fancy, will some mystery strange
/ Itself discover, in some buried tree,
- This land would thus tread close
/ The heels of mother country in the march
/ Of civilization, and improvements vast
/ Affecting much the southern world at large
- So may this land take up improvement’s work,
/ Become the centre, whence may radiate
/ Much good around, like Britain in her rise;
/ Yea ev’n surpass her with achievements great,
- Those pilgrim fathers, who have bravely left
- amid scenes
Quite changed from ancient wildness!
Lines — On hearing of the Demise of Dr. F. Logan, R.N., May 24, 1862, Aged 84 in The New Zealand Survey
- From youth I’ve loved society of the aged
/ Whose lives unite the history of my day
/ With the far past; whose tales have oft engaged
- In his younger days New Zealand was reckoned beyond the reach of civilization! and there were no such things as ocean steamers, railway trains, nor electric telegraphs; let the present generation thus appreciate the improvements now enjoyed.
Canto First in The New Zealand Survey
- barb’rous powers, who scarce have gained a name
/ Among the various princes of the earth,
/ Who on a brother’s welcome scarce presume—
/ They’ve come as fond to see and learn what they
/ Could ne’er conceive, while in old habits pent
/ Beyond improvement’s reach!
- A mean to gather strangers from afar,
/ A happy mean indeed! to aid the bonds
/ Of mutual friendship;—Brethren long apart,
/ Who to each other strangers had become,
/ Are thus together brought with happy art
/ Again to interchange kind looks, and words
- But can such various foreigners return
/ Each to his home, without some idea fresh,
/ By observation drawn from what to him
/ Is novel, worthy imitation? While
/ Through self-examination, as recurrs
/ To him his by-gone history, he discerns
/ Much that needs mending, and much to be chang’d
/ From present state of things, to introduce
/ A healthier atmosphere in what concerns
/ Th’ affairs domestic and political,
/ As all true patriots would, who have at heart
/ The welfare of their country.
- Soon must fly off
/ Such shackles, which impede advancement in
/ The progress of the intellectual march
/ To civ’lization’s height. Fresh ideas
/ Impregnate now their souls with nobler thoughts,
/ All which may prove like seed cast in the soil,
/ Though some time dormant, yet at length to spring
/ The source of future good!
- Although such
/ Desires may be but embryo—scarcely form’d
/ To thought upon their minds, yet these may grow,
/ By more reflection cherish’d, to the seeds
/ Of wond’rous revolutions; yet a work,
/ Though each should in himself the task begin,
/ Which future generations must complete;—
/ When in their country’s history must arise
/ Another era worthy to be known
/ Through time, recorded as another birth;—
/ A fresh advancement to’ard perfection’s height!—
/ A hast’ning of that time “when shall rejoice
/ The wilderness, and blossom as the rose!”
A Lay on Wanganui in The Philosophy of Love. [A Plea in Defence of Virtue and Truth!] A Poem in Six Cantos, with Other Poems
- enterprising skill:
/ Aye, such that makes each wilderness
/ To bud, and blossom like the rose:—
/ Though long thy waiting for such bliss,
/ Yet Time thy prize may soon disclose!
- To savage feuds, and deadly strife,
/ Though long thou hast a witness been;
/ Thou’rt waking to another life
/ Of usefulness, and joy, I ween!
- fell revolution’s sweep
/ O’er former things to change consign’d,
- Well, there they are;—substrata now,
/ Of sandy soil above them grown
/ With vegetation clad, t’avow
/ The plan of Providence forth-shewn.
- Such has a voice to Nature’s Muse,
/ They tell, with no unmeaning sound,
/ How dread convulsions would confuse
/ All former scenes; confirm’d around!
- How good to mark each distant scene,
/ Where yet may come improvement’s change;
/ The wilderness will then be seen
/ Its savage prestige to estrange;
/ And welcome civ’lisation’s bliss,
/ As Nature such a state had chose;
/ So, thus ’tis said “the wilderness
/ Shall bud and blossom as the rose!”
/ Now, still on Wanganui’s banks
/ May thriving herds, and flocks be seen
/ With fields of grain, as Heavenly thanks
/ For industry, which glads each scene!
- But, mark the change; nor’-western gales
/ From, ocean’s bed the sands have sent
/ Mud-flats t’, and tell new tales
/ Of Nature on improvements bent!
/ The ancient bay would now appear
/ As smit by some Magician’s wand.
/ As billows in their fierce career
/ Had got transform’d to hills of sand!—
- great convulsions would resume
/ Some ancient task, unfinish’d then;
/ T’ upheave those ridges ’bove the room
/ They held, ’mid many’ a briny fen!
/ Volcanoes bursting forth in rage
/ On yonder mountains, dreadly grand;
/ The sky bombarding, as, they’d wage
/ Aggressive war, while quaked the land.
/ Thus, from earth’s caverns deep were thown
/ Its molten bowels high in air,
/ As belch’d from cannon’s mouth anon,
/ Like rockets, neither small nor spare!
/ A startling sight to be beheld;
/ Aye, more than fancy well can shew,
- Aye then what grand improvements due,
/ Will on thine aspect be impress’d:
/ Thy present worthiness, most true,
/ Shall thus in future be confess’d!
- Thy hist’ry, buried in the past,
/ Would observation search around,
/ And mark developemeuts, —though vast—
/ Till to this state arrived, thou’rt found.
- How Nature like some lowly maid,
/ Who long has borne a lonely state
/ With all her virtues cast in shade,
/ Yet bowing meekly to her fate,
/ Since she no better knew,—Now see,
/ Her head is raised, the cheering smile
/ Illumes her count’nance; as with glee,
/ New hopes inspire her, as to foil
/ All heart depressions! See, no more
/ She’s passive, void of pleasure; it
/ Seems now her lot, with hopes in store
/ Of great rejoicings,— bliss most fit!
- So see the flocks and herds around,
/ They tell of pastures most abundant,
/ And every homestead seem t’ abound
/ In industry’s rewards redundant!
/ No longer like a wilderness
/ Are spacious plains, as bleak and bare:
/ Now, ornamental trees express
/ Most cheering truths of culture there.
/ The parcel’d fields—the garden ground,
/ Improvement’s onward march reveal;
/ The country’s face adorn’d, is found
/ To promise much for future weal!
- Thus, devastations dire would prove
/ A prelude to some future bliss;
/ The soil enrich’d would now behove
/ The active settlers’ happiness:—
/ New, since old solitudes are past,
/ And day, with Nature, would arise
/ To scatter former glooms, She’d cast
/ Her lot in with bold enterprize:
/ And prove a handmaid good and true;
/ As crowning Industry with cheer;
/ And will as joyfully bestrew
/ Improvement’s path with blessings clear!
/ So, see around this truth proclaim’d
/ In mueh of largeness, still t’ encrease;
/ While more developments are aim’d
/ To know where her resources cease.
/ To fathom such would seem as vain
/ Where ample stores would overflow;
/ As merest effort makes each gain
/ A pledge, of what she’d yet bestow!
- A reflex influence has the land
/ Upon its owner, as on seed;
/ When its fertility will stand
/ A surety for each gen’rous deed!
/ Mete emblem of a bounteous soul,
/ Whieh would devise no scanty measure:
/ Ev’n as culture’s bland control
/ Would wilds convert to scenes of pleasure!
/ The country round begins to wear
/ An aspect new; the old’s outworn:
/ As civ’lization has a care
/ To brighten up things once forlorn!
Canto Third in The Philosophy of Love. [A Plea in Defence of Virtue and Truth!] A Poem in Six Cantos, with Other Poems
- How sweet the distant prospect to behold!—
/ Love-fancy’s ever bright with golden dreams;
/ How like you sunny landscape glowing ’neath
/ A summer sky, in all its beauteous charms,
/ Where woodland hills, ’gainst the horizon’s blue,
/ Stand forth in all varieties of green;
/ While hedge-environ’d fields display a vast
/ Of flowery beauties, in their mingling hues,
/ Bespangling the green pastures, where the kine
/ ’Mid sweet luxuriance graze:—all to the eye
/ Of observation charming—fit to cheer
/ The care-beclouded mind, or grieving heart:—
/ But all such pleasures subject are to change;
/ For, while enraptured with the lovely scene,
/ Foreboding clouds pass over the bright sun,
/ And buries the fair landscape in deep shade;
/ Which casts a reflex influence on the mind!
Canto Sixth in The Philosophy of Love. [A Plea in Defence of Virtue and Truth!] A Poem in Six Cantos, with Other Poems
- Love’s blessings are not sent as full matured;
New Year Salutations, for 1863 in The Philosophy of Love. [A Plea in Defence of Virtue and Truth!] A Poem in Six Cantos, with Other Poems
- Good things of the past, bespeak much for the future,
/ Though nought of self merit in them may claim:
/ For, ’tis all of grace; in the act, and its nature,
/ We’re only mere agents unworthy of fame!
/ What gift is conferr’d on us, may we improve it;
/ ’Twas not to lie idle, or put to abuse!—
/ Where energy’s roused, Heaven’s aid will approve it,
/ And joy shall result to our souls’ special use!
- ’Tis hope, blessed hope in the future, that cheers
/ The heart in its sadness, and keeps it above
/ Whelming waves of affliction, from sinking in fears;
/ Aye, even when quench’d are the motives of love.
/ Oh! hard it is truly to be victimised,
/ As having one’s feelings the prey of despair:
/ Kind Heaven, look on such; let be realized
/ That hope in some change which their joy might declare!
Canto Second in The Philosophy of Love. [A Plea in Defence of Virtue and Truth!] A Poem in Six Cantos, with Other Poems
- So feels, th’ enamour’d swain, whose loving heart
/ Has got entrapp’d, suspecting nought of guile,
/ In her, who, took his fancy, wiled his heart,
/ Until attainment of her ends she gain’d:—
/ Now base deceit, no longer held in check,
/ Must out anon! and that to his dismay,
/ O’erwhelming all his prospects bright with gloom!
/ Such sudden change appals; he feels its shock
/ Quite paralizing all his energies
/ For future weel;
- On looking through the history of life,
/ We see the wisdom of God’s providence;
/ In making man the being that he is;
- Love’s that instinctive feeling which pervades
/ All Nature; but particularly in Man
/ ’Tis prominently shewn, as he begins
/ To feel the impulse, of progressive life,
/ Astir wilthin his breast. ’Tis then he feels
- Love then seem’d dormant, or had but possess’d
/ Mere infant life, as being void of care,
/ In passiveness; while no activity
/ It had to shew progressiveness in life;
/ ’Twas mere child’s play, compared to earnest work!
/ —But now ’tis roused; ’tis actively awake;
/ It feels its own existence, even in
/ Recrimination, and their mutual grief,
/ At having lost the joys they once possess’d.
Canto Fifth in The Philosophy of Love. [A Plea in Defence of Virtue and Truth!] A Poem in Six Cantos, with Other Poems
- Should some lot
/ On us, by man tyrannic, be imposed,
/ As not appointed of the Sovereign’s will;
/ A dispensation may to us be given,
/ Empow’ring us our liberty to work,
/ Or aught remove, which progress would impede,
/ If our advancement be the will of Heaven!
/ What otherwise is ours, our duty is
/ To make the best of what seems the reverse
/ Of all accounted good; as thereby’s shewn
/ Our virtue, and its nature; as ’twill shine
/ With such a brightness, which would best declare
/ One’s genuineness of soul!—Or what is good,
/ Must still improved be, as ’tis never will’d
/ Such should be held at discount; as such were
/ Incapable of being more advanced;
To my Auld Trews in The Philosophy of Love. [A Plea in Defence of Virtue and Truth!] A Poem in Six Cantos, with Other Poems
- Though former freenships fail—’tis sad!—
/ Like the fine gloss my trews ance had;
/ Yet may remembrances still shed
/ Aroon’ this heart
/ (Like holes weel patch’d,) an influence glad,
/ Joys to impart!
/ ’Tis thus we may some wisdom gain
/ Frae common things, whilk aye contain
/ Gude halsome truths; whilk to attain,
/ The eydent Muse
/ Wad, moralizin’ sing this strain
/ To my auld Trews!
- Their newness, welcomes wad ensure
/ Whaure,er I gaed; an’ wad secure
/ Sweet freenship’s smile; ay, then as sure
/ Wer’ social joys
/ Whaurnoo! cauld scorn I micht endure,
/ In sic like guise!
/ How like thir trews is freenship’s growth;
/ Whan spang new, seemin’ cheerin’ truth;
- ’Tis true they dae leuk sairly clooted,
/ That noo! th’ original seems dooted,
/ As the auld colour’s got transmuted
/ To ora hues;
/ Eraewhilk a homily comes, weel suited
/ To my fond Muse!
/ At kirk an’ market, ance wi’ grace,
/ They could appear wi’ honour’d face;
/ But work-a-day life ’s noo! their case;
/ As former joys.
/ Noo stern realities displace
/ As vanities!
Canto Fourth in The Philosophy of Love. [A Plea in Defence of Virtue and Truth!] A Poem in Six Cantos, with Other Poems
- The matter much she ponder’do’er and o’er,
/ And in connection, on the ploughman thought;
/ For, when comparing things as they appear’d,
/ To what her fancy—no vain fancy this—
/ Would picture forth beneath the care of him
/ She cherish in her heart,—the ploughman George!
/ —She could not but feel trammel’d by the force
/ Of such untoward ettiquette, and sigh,
/ “Oh! could we come to conversation,—then
/ My heart would feel releived; or know the worst
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