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Is the curse even nights, I saw that curse,
Yea, slimy things did crawl with legs heart, and out of it oozed some drops Upon the slimy sea.
of blood that could be extorted but “ About, about, in reel and rout
by its own moral misery. « bit The death-fires danced at night;
my arm, I sucked the blood," and The water, like a witch's oils,
why? Not to quench that thirst, Burnt green, and blue, and white.
but that he might call a sail ! a sail!
Remorse edged his teeth on his 66 And some in dreams assured were
own flesh-Remorse mad for sale Of the spirit that plagued us so ;
vation of the wretches suffering for Nine fathom deep he had followed us
his sin; and in the act there was ReFrom the land of mist and snow,
pentance. But Remorse and Re. " And every tongue, through utter drought, pentance, what are they to Doom ? Was withered at the root;
They neither change nor avert-and We could not speak, no more than if seeing themselves both baffled, again We had been choked with soot.
begin to ban and to curse, till there « Ah! well-a-day! what evil looks
is a conversion; and out of perfect Had I from old and young !
contrition arise, even in nature's Instead of the cross, the Albatross
extremest misery, resignation and About my neck was hung."
peace. The sufferings that ensue painted with a power far transcend “ Alone, alone, all, all alone,
Alone on a wide wide sea! ing that of any other poet who has
And adventured the horrors of never a saint took pity on thirst, inanition, and drop-by.drop My soul in agony, wasting away of clay bodies into “ The many men so beautiful! corpses. They have tried by luxu. And they all dead did lie: riating among images of misery to ex And a thousand thousand slimy things haust the subject--by accumulation Lived on; and so did I. of ghastly agonies - gathered from narratives of shipwrecked sailors, And dret my eyes away ;
“ I looked upon the rotting sea, huddled on purpose into boats for I looked upon the rotting deck, weeks on sun-smitten seas-or of And there the dead men lay. shipfulls, of sinners crazed and delirious, staving liquor casks, and in
“ I looked to heaven, and tried to pray ; madness murdering and devouring
But or ever a prayer had gushd, one another, or with yelling, laughter My heart as dry as dust.
A wicked whisper came, and made leaping into the sea. Coleridge concentrated into a few words the es "I closed my lids, and kept them close, sence of torment--and showed soul And the balls like pulses beat ; made sense, and living but in baked For the sky and the sea, and the sea and the dust and blood.
Lay like a load on my weary eye, 66 With throats unslaked, with black lips And the dead were at my feet.
baked, We could nor laugh nor wail ;
6. The cold sweat melted from their limbs,
Nor rot nor reek did they :
The look with which they looked on me
Had never passed away. And cried, A sail ! a sail ! "With throats unslaked, with black lips “An orphan's curse would drag to hell baked,
A spirit from on 'high'; Agape they heard me call :
But oh! nore horrible than that Gramercy! they for joy did grin,
curse in a dead man's eye ! And all at once their breath drew in,
, As they were drinking all."*
And yet I could not die. This is the true Tragedy of Re “ The moving Moon went up the sky,
- and also of Repentance. And nowhere did abide : Thirst had dried, and furred, and Softly she was going up, hardened his throat the same as the And a star or two beside throats of the other wretches-but “ Her beams bemocked the sultry main, God bad cracked too his stoney Like April hoar-frost spread;
But where the ship’s huge shadow lay, who in wantonness and madness The charmed water burnt alway
killed the beautiful bird, that came A still and awful red.
out of the snow-cloud whiter than “ Beyond the shadow of the ship
snow, and kept for days sailing along I watched the water-snakes :
with the ship on wings whiter than They moved in tracts of shining white,
ever were hers in the sunshine-he And when they reared, the elfish light
lives on-a heavier doom-and in Fell off in hoary flakes.
his ceaseless trouble has but one “ Within the shadow of the ship
consolation, and out of it the hope
arises that enables him to dree his I watched their rich attire :
rueful penance—the Christian hope Blue, glossy green, and velvet black, They coiled and swam ; and every track
that his confession may soften other Was a flash of golden fire.
hearts in the hardness, or awaken
them from the carelessness of cru6. O happy living things ! no tongue elty, and thus be of avail for his own their beauty might declare :
sake before the throne of justice and A spring of love gushed from my heart, of mercy at the last day. And I blessed them unaware : Sure my kind saint took pity on me, “ O wedding-guest! this soul hath been And I blessed them unaware.
Alone on a wide wide sea : 66 The selfsame moment I could pray ;
So lonely 'twas, that God himself
Scarce seemed there to be.
61 ( sweeter than the marriage-feast, Like lead into the sea.
'Tis sweeter far to me, In reference to another senseless With a goodly company!
To walk together to the kirk objection, we may be pardoned for saying, what all but idiots know,
“ To walk together to the kirk, that the crime of one man involves And all together pray, in its punishment the death of hun- While each to his great Father bends, dreds and thousands on shore and
Old men, and babes, and loving friends, at sea-even in the ordinary course
And youths and maidens gay! of nature and while death is their “ Farewell, farewell! but this I tell doom, life is his, as in this strangest To thee, thou wedding guest ! of all shadows of the wild ways of He prayeth well, who loveth well Providence. Nor were the rest of Both man and bird and beast. the crew innocent, for they approved “He prayeth best, who loveth best the deed—they suffer and die--and All things both great and small ; after death, the chief criminal be. For the dear God who loveth us, holds their beatified spirits but he He made and loveth all.”
DEATH OF MR BLACKWOOD.
Ir is expected, we hope without presumption, that the habitual readers of this Magazine will hear with regret that he to whom it owed its name and existence, and who for seventeen years superintended all its concerns with industrious zeal, is no more among us. Mr William BLACKWOop died at his house, in Ainslie Place, Edinburgh, on Tuesday, the 16th of September, at 6 o'clock A.M., in the fifty eighth year of his age. His disease had been from the first pronounced incurable by his physicians. Four months of suffering, in part intense, exhausted by slow degrees all his physical energies, but left his temper calm and unruffled, and his intellect entire and vigorous even to the last. He had thus what no good man will consider as a slight privilege-that of contemplating the approach of death with the clearness and full strength of his mind and faculties, and of instructing those around him by solemn precept and memorable example, by what means alone, humanity, consci. ous of its own frailty, can sustain that prospect with humble serenity.
Mr BLACKWOOD, though his respectable parents were in a much humbler station of life than that which he ultimately occupied, had received an excellent early education; and it was his boyish devotion to literature which determined them in the choice of his calling. He served his appren. ticeship with the well-known house of Bell and Bradfute; and before he quitted their roof, had so largely stored his mind with reading of all sorts, but more especially Scottish History and Antiquities, that on his establishing himself in business, his accomplishments soon attracted the notice of persons whose good opinion was distinction. For many years he confined his attention almost exclusively to the classical and antiquarian branches of the trade, and was regarded as one of the best informed booksellers of that class in the kingdom; but on removing from the Old to the New Town of Edinburgh, in 1816, he disposed of his stock, and thenceforth applied himself, with characteristic ardour, to general literature, and the business of a popular publisher. In April, 1817, he put forth the first Number of this Journal—the most important feature of his professional career. He had long before contemplated the possibility of once more raising magazine literature to a rank not altogether unworthy of the great names which had been enlisted in its service in a preceding age: it was no sudden or fortuitous suggestion which prompted him to take up the enterprise, in which he was afterwards so preeminently successful as to command many honourable imitators. From an early period of its progress, his Magazine engrossed a very large share of his time; and though he scarcely ever wrote for its pages himself, the general management and arrangement of it, with the very extensive literary correspondence which this involved, and the constant superintendence of the press, would have been more than enough to occupy entirely any man but one of first-rate ener ies.
No man ever conducted business of all sorts in a more direct and manly manner. His opinion was on all occasions distinctly expressed his questions were ever explicit—his answers conclusive. His sincerity might sometimes be considered as rough, but no human being ever
accused him either of flattering or of shuffling; and those men of letters who were in frequent communication with him, soon conceived a respect and confidence for him, which, save in a very few instances, ripened into cordial regard and friendship. The masculine steadiness, and imper. turbable resolution of his character, were impressed on all his proceedings; and it will be allowed by those who watched him through his career, as the Publisher of a Literary and Political Miscellany, that these qualities were more than once very severely tested. He dealt by parties exactly as he did by individuals. Whether his principles were right or wrong, they were his, and he never compromised or complimented away one tittle of them. No changes, either of men or of measures, ever dimmed his eye, or checked his
courage. To youthful merit he was a ready and a generous friend; and to literary persons of good moral character, when involved in pecuniary distress, he delighted to extend a bountiful hand. He was in all respects a man of large and liberal heart and temper.
During some of the best years of his life, he found time, in the midst of his own pressing business, to take rather a prominent part in the affairs of the City of Edinburgh as a Magistrate; and now that he is no more, it will be admitted, we doubt not, by those who most closely observed, and most constantly opposed him in this capacity, that he exhibited on all occasions perfect fairness of purpose, and often, in the conduct of debate, and the management of less vigorous minds, a very rare degree of tact and sagacity. His complete personal exemption from the slightest suspicion of jobbing or maneuvring, was acknowledged on all hands; and, as the civic records can show, the most determined enemy of what was called Reform, was, in his sphere, the unwearied, though not always the triumphant assailant of practical mischiefs. Already, we are well assured, the impression is strong and general among the citizens of Edinburgh, of all shades of political sentiment, that in William BLACKWOOD, they have lost a great light and ornament of their order—a man of high honour and principle, pure and patriotic motives, and very extraordinary capacity.
In the private relations, as in the public conduct of his life, he may safely be recommended as a model to those who come after him. He has left a widow, exemplary in all the domestic virtues, and a large family, some of them very young ; his two eldest sons will carry on the business, in which, from boyhood, they were associated with their honoured parent; and as they are generally esteemed for their amiable dispositions, their talents, and their integrity, it cannot be doubted, that they continue to tread in his footsteps, they will not want to aid and sustain them under the load of duty which has untimely devolved on them, the assistance of their father's friends, and the favour of that great party, which, through evil report and through good report, he most strenuously and efficiently served.
Printed by Ballantyne and Company, Paul's Work, Edinburgh,