Henry J. (Henry John) Van-Lennep.

The American lady's preceptor : a compilation of observations, essays and poetical effusions designed to direct the female mind in a course of pleasing and instructive reading online

. (page 16 of 18)
Online LibraryHenry J. (Henry John) Van-LennepThe American lady's preceptor : a compilation of observations, essays and poetical effusions designed to direct the female mind in a course of pleasing and instructive reading → online text (page 16 of 18)
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When sleep forsook my open eye,
Who was it sung sweet lullaby,
And rock'd me that I should not cry ?

My Mother.

Who sat and watch'd my infant head,
When sleejwng on my cradle bed,
And tears of sweet affection shed ?

My Mother.

When pain and sickness made me cry,
Who gaz'd upon my heavy eye.
And wept, for fear that 1 should die ?

My Mother.

Who drest my doll in clothes so gay.
And taught me pretty how to play.
And minded all I had to say ?

My Mother.

Who ran to help me when I fell,
And would some pretty story tell.
Or kiss the place to make it well ?

My Mother.

Who taught my infant lips to pray.
To love God's holy word, and day.
And walk in Wisdom's pleasant way ?

My Mother.

And can I ever cease to be
Affectionate and kind to thee,
• Who was so very kind to me ?

My Mother.


no ! the thought I cannot bear,
And, if God please my lite to spare,

1 hope I shall reward thy care.

My Mother.

When thou art feeble, old, and grey^
My healthy arm shall be thy stay,
And I will soothe thy pains away,

My Mother.

And when I see thee hang thy head,
'Twill be my turn to watch thy bed,
And tears of sweet affection shed,

My Mother.

For God, who lives above the skies.
Would look with vengeance in his eyes,
If I should ever dare despise,

My Mother.

[Originally from an American Newspaper. 1



WHEN first the nuptial state, we prove,
We live the happy life of love ;
But when familiar, charms no more
Inspire the bliss, they gave before,
Each less delighting, less is lov'd,
First this, then that, is disapprov'd ;
Complaisance flies, neglect succeeds,
Neglect, disdain and hatred breeds.


Twas thus a pair, who long time proved
The joys to love and be belovM ;
At length fell out for trifling things,
From trifles, anger chiefly springs ;
The wish to please forsook each breast,
Love's throne by baseless rage possess^ :
Resolv'd to part, they meet no more :

Enough the chariot's at the door.

The mansion M' as my lady's own ;
Sir John resolv'd to live in town ;
Writings were drawn, each cause agreed.
Both vovv'd they'd ne'er recall the deed •
The chariots wait, wdiy this delay ?
The sequel shall the cause display.

One lovely girl the lady bore,
Dear pledge of joys she tastes no more ;
The father's, mother's darling ; she
Now lisp'd and prattled on each knee :
Sir John, when rising to depart,
Turn'd to the darling of his heart ;
And cry'd, widi ardour in his eye,

* Come Betse)', bid mamma good bye ;*
The lady, trembling, answer'd, ' no —

* Go, kiss papa, my Betsy, go ;

' The child shall live with me' she cry'd,

' The child shall chuse' Sir John reply'd

Poor Betsy, look'd at each by turns,
And each the starting tear discerns ;
My lady asks, with doubt and fear,
' Will you not live with me, my dear ?
Yes, half resolv'd, reply'd the child,
And half suppress'd her tears ; she smil'd ,
"• Come Betsy,' cry'd Sir John, ' you'll go
' And live with dear papa, I know,'

Yes, Betsy cry'd- the lady then,

Address'd the wond'ring child again ;


' The time to live with both is o'er,

' This day we part to meet no more :

* Chuse then,' — here, grief o'erflowM her breast,

And tears burst out, too long suppressed ;

The child who tears and chiding join'd,

Supposed papa, displeased, unkind ;

And try'd, with all her little skill,

To soothe his oft relenting will ;

' Do, cry'd the lisper, papa ! do,

' Love dear mamma ! mamma loves you ;'

Subdu'd, the source of manly pride,

No more his looks his heart beli'd ;

The tender transport forc'd its way,

They both confess'd each other^s sway ;

And prompted by the social smart.

Breast rush'd to breast, and heart to heart ;

Each clasp'd their Betsy, o'er and o'er,

And Tom drove empty from the door.

You that have passions for a tear,

Give nature vent, and drop it here.


THERE often wanders one, whom better dayi
Saw better clad, in cloak of satin trimm'd
With lace, and hat with splendid ribband bound.
A serving maid was she, and fell in love
With one who left her, went to sea, and died.
Her fancy followed him through foaming nvaves
To distant shores, and she would sit and weep
At what a sailor suffers. Fancy too,
Delusive most where warmest wishes are,
Would oft anticipate his glad return,
And dream of transports she was not to know.
She heard the doleful tidings of his death.
And never smil'd again. And now she roams
u 2


The dreary waste ; there spends the livelong day ,*
And there, unless when charity forbids,
The livelong night. A tatter'd apron hides,
Worn as a cloak, and hardly hides, a gown
More tatter'd still ; and both but ill conceal
A bosom heav'd with never-ceasing sighs.
She begs an idle pin of all she meets.
And hoards them in her sleeve : but needful food
Tho' press'd with hunger oft, or comelier clothes,
Though pinch'd with cold, asks never. — Kate is




I'O brave each danger, bear each toil,
Traverse the seas, subdue the soil ;
To seek the praise that learning yields,
Or glory win in martial fields.
Was man first formM of hardy mould,
Patient of toil, in danger bold :
Yet man, of all these powers possess'd,
Remain'd unblessing, and imblessM,
Till woman made, an helpmate meet,
His happiness became complete.
'Tis his, to clime fame's rugged way,
His trophies at her feet to lay :
'Tis her's, to soothe the mental strife^
And sweeten all the ills of life :
In man, each sterner art has place.
In woman, each enchanting grace :,
Women from men protection find,
And men by women are refin'd.
Man's form'd for business and debate.
To govern and defend the state.


To shun the scenes of private rest,
And stand m public life confess'd.
Woman is loveliest when retir'd ;
When least obtrusive, most admired.
In her, the accent soft and low,
And blushing face most graceful show :
Placed in the mild domestic sphere,
With highest grace her charms appear ;
Exposed to the broad glare of day,
Each modest beauty fades away ;
When woman would be learn'd or great.
She seeks what's foreign to her state ;
^Tis hers to know each winning way.
And rule, by seeming to obey.




Has charming' imagery^ andjine moral grace*

BRIGHT stranger, welcome to my field.
Here feed in safety, here thy radiance yield ;

To me, oh, nightly be thy splendor giv'n :
Oh ! could a wish of mine the skies commandj
How would I gem thy leaf, v/ith lib'ral hand,

With every sweetest dew of heav'ii !

Say dost thou kindly light the fairy train,
Amidst their gambols on the stilly plain.

Hanging the lamp upon the moisten'd blade I
What lamp so fit, so pure as thine.


Amidst the gentle elfin band to shine,

And chase the horrors of the midnight-shade !

Oh ! may no feather'd foe disturb thy bow'r,
And with barbarian beak thy life devour :

Oh ! may no ruthless torrent of the sky,
O'erwhelming, force thee from thy dewy seat,
Nor tempests tear thee from thy green retreat.

And bid thee 'midst the humming myriads die.

Queen of the insect world, what leaves delight ?

Of such these willing hands a bow'r shall form,
To guard thee from the rushing rains of nightj

And hide thee from the wild wing of the storm.

Sweet child of stillness, 'midst the awful calm
Of pausing Nature, thou art pleas'd to dwell :

In happy silence to enjoy thy balm.

And shed through life a lustre round thy celi.

How different Man, the imp of noise and strife,
Who courts the storm that tears and darkens life ;

Blest when the passions wild the soul invade \
How nobler far to bid those whirlwinds cease ;
To taste, like thee, the luxury of peace.

And shine in solitude and shade.



SYLVIA ! with the wheel I send.
Take the hints 'twas form'd to lend.
Emblem this of life is found,
While you turn it round and round.


All the years that roll away,
Are but circles of a day ;
Still the same, and still renew'd,
While some distant good's pursu'd ;
Distant, for we're never blest
Till the laboring wheel's at rest.
Then the various thread is spun ;
Then the toil of life is done.
Happy ! if the running twine
Form'd a smooth and even line ;
Not a foul, and tangled clue,
Not untimely snapt in two.
Then the full reward is sure,
Rest that ever shall endure ;
Rest to happiness refin'd.
Bliss of body and of mind '


SHORT is the date the oldest being lives.
Nor has longevity one hour to waste.
Life's duties are proportion'd to the haste
With which they fleet away ; each day receives

Its task that if neglected, surely gives

The morrow double toil. Ye, who have pass'd

In idle sport the days that fled so fast.

Days that nor grief recalls, nor care retrieves,

At length be wise, and think that of the past
Remaining in that vital period given.
How short the date and at the prospect start

Ere to the extremest verge your steps are driv'n,
Nor let one moment unimprov'd depart
But view it, as the latest gift of Heaven.



BEHOLD the day an image of the year,
The year an image of our life's short span.
Morn like the spring with glowing light begany
Spring like our youth with joy and beauty fai^'

Moon, picturing Summer— —Summer's ardent •

Manhood's gay portrait ; Eve like Autumn waii
Autumn resembling faded age in Man.
Night with its silence and its darkness drear,

Emblem of Winter's froze and gloomy reign,
When torpid lie the vegetative powers
Winter so shrunk, so cold reminds us plain

Of the mute grave that o'er the dim course lowrs :
There shall the weary rest, nor ought remain^
To the pale slumberer, of life's checkered hours^



TAKE holy earth ! all that my soul holds deai^

Take that best gift which heaven so lately gave ^
To Bristol's fount, I bore with trembling care

Her faded form — she bow'd to taste the wave
And died. Does youth, does beauty read the line

Does sympathetic fear their breasts alarm ?
Speak dear Maria ! breathe a strain divine ;

Ev'n from the grave thou shalt have power t(
Bid them be chaste, be innocent like thee ;

Bid them in duty's sphere as meekly move,
And if so fair, from vanity as free.

As firm in friendship, and as kind in love.

lyttleton's monody. 2Q^

Tell them though 'tis an awful thing to die,

('Twas ev'n to thee) yet the dread path once

Heaven lifts its everlasting portals high,

And bids " the pure in heart behold their God."



YE tufted groves, ye gently falling rills,
Ye high o'er-shadowing hills,

Ye lawns gay-smiling with eternal green,
Oft' have you my Lucy seen !

But never shall you now behold her more ;
Nor will she now with fond delight.
And taste refin'd, your rural charms explore,
Clos'd are those beauteous eyes in endless night !

In vain I look around.

O'er all the well-known ground.
My Lucy's wonted footsteps to descry ;

Where oft we us'd to walk.

Where oft in tender talk,
We saw the summer sun go down the sky,

Nor by yon fountain's side,

Nor where its waters glide
Along the valley can she now be found,
In all the wide-stretch'd prospect's ample bound!

No more my mournful eye,

Can ought of her espy.
But the sad sacred earth where her dear relics lie.
Sweet babes, who like the little playful |"awns,
Were wont to trip along these verdant lawns,

By your delighted mother's side ;

Who now your infant steps shall guide ?


Ah ! where is now the hand whose tender care,
To every virtue would have form'd your youth,
And strew 'd with flow'rs the thorny ways of
truth :

Oh ! loss beyond repair !

Oh ! wretched father left alone.
To weep their dire misfortune and my own !
Tell how her manners by the world refin'd,
Left all the taint of modish vice behind,
And made each charm of polish'd courts agree

With candid Truth's simplicity,

And uncorrupted innocence !

Tell how to more than manly sense.

She join'd the softening influence.

Of more than female tenderness ?

A prudence undeceiving, undeceived,
, That, nor too little, nor too much believ'd,
That scorn'd unjust suspicion's coward fear.
And without weakness knew to be sincere.



YE virgins ! fond to be admir'd,
With mighty rage of conquest fir'd,

And universal sway ;
Who heave the uncover'd bosom high.
And roll a fond, inviting eye,

On all the circle gay !

You miss the fine and secret art
To win the castle of the heart.

For which you all contend ;
The coxcomb tribe may crowd your train.
But you will never, never gain,

A lover, or a friend.


If this your passion, this your praise,
To shine, to dazzle, and to blaze,

You may be call'd divine :
But not a youth beneath the sky
Will say in secret, with a sigh,

' O were that maiden mine !'

You marshal, brilliant, from the box,
Fans, feathers, diamonds, castled locks,

Your magazine of arms ;
But 'tis the sweet sequestered walk,
The whispering hour, the tender talk.

That gives your genuine charms.

The nymph-like robe, the natural ^racc,
The smile, the native of the face,

Refinement without art ;
The eye where pure affection beams,
The tear from tenderness that streams,

The accents ,2 the heart ;

The trembling frame, the living cheek.
Where, like the morning, blushes break

To crimson o'er the breast ;
The look - here sentiment is seen.
Fine passions moving o'er the mien.

And all the soul exprest :

Your beauties these ; with these you shine,
And reign on high by right divine.

The sovereigns of the world;
Then to your court the nations flow ;
The Muse with flowers the path will strew,

Where Venus' car is hurPd,



At times, to veil is to reveal,
And to display is to conceal ;

Mysterious are j^^our laws ;
The vision fmer than the view ;
Her landscape Nature never drew

So fair as Fancy drav/s.

A beauty, carelessly betray 'd,
Enamours more, than if display'd

All woman's charms were given ;
And, o'er the bosom's vestal white,
The gauze appears a robe of light,

That veils, yet opens, heaven.

See virgin Eve, with gi*aces bland
Fresh blooming from her Maker's hand,

In orient beauty beam !
Fair on the river-margin laid.
She knew not that her image made

The angel in the stream.

Still ancient Eden blooms your ov/n ;
But artless Innocence alone

Secures the heavenly post ;
For if, beneath an angel's mien,
The serpent's tortuous train is seen,

Our Paradise is lost.




Hail lovely pow'r ! whose bosom heaves the sigh,
Wheri Fancy paints the scene of deep distress ;
Whose tears spontaneous chrystalize the eye,
When rigid fate denies the power to bless.


Not all the sweets Arabia's gales convey

From flow'ry meads, can with that sigh com-
pare ;

Not dew-drops glitt'ring in the morning rav,
Seem half so beauteous as that falling tear.

Devoid of fear the fawns around thee play ;

Emblem of peace, the dove before thee flies ;
No blood-stain'd traces mark thy guiltless way^

Beneath thy feet no hapless insect dies.

Come, lovely pow'r ! and range the meads with
To spring the partridge from the guileful foe ;
From strengthening snares the struggling bird to
And stop the hand prepar'd to give the blow :

Or turn to nobler, greater tasks, thy care,
To me thy sympathetic gifts impart :

Teach me in friendship's grief to bear a share,
And justly boast, the generous, feeling heart.

Teach me to soothe the helpless orphan's grief,
With timely aid the widow's woes assuage ;

To misery's moving cry to yield relief.

And be the sure resource of drooping age.

So, when the genial spring of life shall fade,
And sinking nature owns the dread decay.

Some soul congenial then may lend its aid.
And gild the close of life's eventful day.


[The following poetry, the editor has been so fortunate
as to procure from the author. Some of the pieces
may perhaps be deemed not appropriate to the ge-
neral design of this work, but the editor believes
that he will readily find more than his apology for the
deviation, by laying before his readers original po-
ems, that would not disgrace a Strangfokd or a



From the Italian of Filicaja,

SEE the fond mother with her offspring round,

How melts her soul with pious tenderness !

As she surveys them all'her looks express
Maternal love, and happiness profound. —
One to her breast, where the calm joys abound,

She eager clasps ; another strives to bless

With words of sweet import ; a third a kiss
Soothes ; while another sports upon the ground.
By all their little ways their wants she knows ;

To each dispenses what its wants demand.
Or feigning frowns ; The Almighty so, who

His glance from high, toman each need supplies.
And if a prayer rejects, his bounteous hand

Withholding, but to bless the more denies.

G. W. C.



Nymph of the ever-placid mien !
With humble look and soul serene
In fortune's adverse day ;


Who calmly sit'st amid the storm
That bursts around thy angel form,
Nor murmur'st at its sway :

Oh ! now regardless of thy spell,
While heaves my aching bosom's swell,

Each grief, each pain reveal 'd ;
Still trembling in the dang'rous maze
Where ills assail, be near to raise

Thy strong, protecting shield !

Full many a heart, by sorrow tried,
Has felt the balm thy hand supplied

To ease its throbbing woes, —
As resignation lifts on high.
Nor vainly so, the trusting eye,

And soothes to soft repose.

Yet, ah ! upon thy steps no less
The watchful fiends relentless press

To urge their fell control :
How oft they point the pois'nous dart.
And aim to wound th\ gentle heart,

And fright thy tranquil soul !

Methinks I see thee even now.

With hands compos'd, and halcyon brow"

While glaring near thee stand
(Undaunted thou behold'st them wait)
The vengeful ministers of fate,

A dreadful, numerous band !

There stern misfortune suHen lowers,
And chills the heavy passing hours,

Mad anguish writhing nigh :
And weeping misery and scorn,
And drooping poverty forlorn,

Their different efforts Xrv i
V 2


There curst ingratitude, and lo !
Sly falsehood, dealing oft the blow

. In friendship's specious guise ;
Where hell-born art can none avoid
By sad experience fully tried,
The guarded nor the wise !

Tho' ne'er invok'd before, thy aid
Refuse not thou, propitious maid

This warmly votive hour :
A suppliant at thy shrine, decreed
By many a bitter wrong to bleed

Implores thy pitying pow'r.

With pious Hope, thy sister-friend,
Oh ! hither come, thy succour lend,

To quell this painful strife ;
And teach me how, with rising thought.
And breast with conscious virtue fraught,

To bear the ills of life.

G. W.C.


From the Italian of Guid'i.

Amid my fair one's locks of golden hue
That o'er her neck and ivory forehead pla)',
I-ove sportive linger'd with a fond delay.

And trac'd each flowing curl with wonder new.

Ah ! soon he found 'twere vain to bid adieu
To that blest prison : every tress his stay
Enforc'd a chain by beauty's magic sway

Twin'd; and his heart in close confinement


Now Venus bending from the blissful skies,
Her boys release with presents rich demands :
But, goddess, share thy useless gifts and learn

That love, enslav'd by love, a captive sighs :
And should'st thou free him from his glossy bands,

The wanton urchin would again return.



THE hand of sorrow o'er her features threw
A pensive shade, and from her downcast eyes

Fell tears celestial, streaming oft anew ;

And oft her bosom strove with struggling sighs*

The tragic scene that gentlest Otway drew,
When Isabella's deepest woes arise,

Touch'd her young heart, to melting softness true,
And claim'd the drops the unfeeling one denies.

To me, more beauteous seem'd that mournful
More heav'nty thro' her humid glance the ray
Than when, in fascinating smiles array'd.
Beams with the bashful light of love her face.
Oh! thus in life when real griefs invade.
Be ever that pure breast subdued by Pity's
sway !

G. W. C



AS pensive here amid these shades I rove,
That oft have heard me pour the plaintive strain,
The bubbling fountain, and the lonely plain,
The arching grotto, and the murmuring grove ;
What visions haunt me still, by Memory wove,
And crowd, like sunshine, on my anxious brain !
Bright dreams of bliss ! ye dear, delusive train ?

Ye come from Laura, and ye breathe of love.
And must ye, soothing fancies, fade away?
Denied the treasure of his living light,
The laurel-shade for life's increasing years,
Ah ! what remains but solitude and tears.
The love-lorn songs my lips for her essay.

And Petrarch's lyre— and Death's devolving

G. W. C.


DEAR eyes ! ye day-stars of my fate ! from
Fall the pearl drops of sympathetic tears ;
Bright azure lamps ! Avithin whose crystal spheres

The rays of virtue live, and innocence :

From ye inspiring orbs ! no guilty sense
Of passion kindles, while each look endears ;
Put in the wondering soul a love thro' years

To burn with chaste and holy thrill intense
To ye pure eyes I I humbly look, and there

I read the words that calm my troubled soul ;
** Oh ! Petrarch murmur not ; to earthly share
* Rather in imitation of his general style.

SONG— ODE. 249

*•' Of griefs shall recompence on high be giv'n.'
Yes, I will every grov'ling wish controul,
And thro' their mistress lift my thoughts to heav'n.


Sweet be, my gentle dear ! thy rest ;

May peace around thy pillow stay,
And blissful dreams, descending blest,

Upon thy raptur'd fancy play !

But oh ! when morn unveils those eyes
With kindness let them beam on me :

And sleep at night, who from me flies,
May bring the rest he gives to thee.

G. W. C.


I SAW her when the bud of youth
Begins, Ibeneath the genial hand
Of time, its beauties to expand ;

The age of innocence and truth.

Scarce sixteen summer suns had shed
Their influence o'er her lovely head ;
Yet still the raptur'd eye could trace
The embryo of that matchless grace
Which beam'd so soon upon the sight,
The blooming emblem of delight ;

A form so lovely and so young

Ne'er knew the praise of passion's tongue.

How mildly glanc'd her artless eyes,
How beauteous seem'd her blushing cheek,
When, as she op'd her lips to speak,
She that admiration rise
Which kindled all the conscious glow
That thrili'd her bosom's heaving snow !
Her curling glossy hair was bound
With black and twisted bands around,


Th?.t seem'd with pride and jealous care

To make a prisoner of that hair :
Yet freed a falling ringlet bright
To shade her neck's transparent white.

Ah ! love I fear has not the skill,
With all the magic of his tongue
That many a tender theme has sung,

To tell the rapture of that thrill

Which thro' my wild bewilder'd frame
Shot like the swift electric flame,
And held my soul in heav'nly trance,
Smit by the light'ning of her glance :— -
That glance I stiil, too conscious, feel
When'er those radiant eyes reveal,
Twin suns that light my golden days !
The melting lustre of their rays.

G. W. C.



Spirit of her forever flown !

Oh ! could thy heav'nly essence see.
While to the careless world unknown,

How much my soul laments for thee.
Perhaps 'twould please thee then to know

That he whose heart was fondly thine,
Tho' dead to all its hopes below.

Yet cherishes a flame divine !

Then would'st thou see how many a tear
Of anguish bathes these burning eyes ;

Then would thy gentle nature hear

The murmur of my ceaseless sighs :• —

And oh ! blest spirit ! then, intent.
In long succession would'sj thou find,


How many a slow-winged night is spent
To woo thy image to my mind !

Yet surely at this silent hour,

When wearied v/retches sink to sleep,
Thou pitying see'st, by memory's pow'r

Opprest, thy wretched lover weep,
And shed'st upon his woes a balm :

For oft upon my troubled breast
Will steal a momentary calm, *

That speaks thy hov'ring presence blest.

And oft, to listening fancy lone,

As griefs of wilder swell subside.

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Online LibraryHenry J. (Henry John) Van-LennepThe American lady's preceptor : a compilation of observations, essays and poetical effusions designed to direct the female mind in a course of pleasing and instructive reading → online text (page 16 of 18)