Jersey. – A Fragment.


Poetry in Jersey


Her Nature revels in a sunny clime,
Where hill and dale in varied beauties shine;
Where light and shade their softest colours blend,
The height'ning power of beauty to extend;
Where harmony and grace together meet
In simple elegance of form complete;
Where ev'ry breeze some new emotion wakes,
And thoughts serene upon the spirit breaks;
Where, from amidst yon blooming grove of spring,
Soft music floats on airy playful wing,
And plumy minstrels hail the king of day,
Breathing his welcome in their woodland lay;
Where the bland air is redolent with praise,
And light-wing'd zephyrs on their pinions raise
The sweet perfume, exhaled from plant and flower,
Growing luxuriant here in ev'ry bower.

A universe in miniature, fait Isle,
Doth in thy richly vernal limits smile!
Enamell'd plains, green hills, luxuriant vales,
Fair orchards bending to the balmy gales,
Rich in the promise of autumnal sweets,
Each teeming beauty here our senses greets;
And Fancy, in anticipation gay,
Beholds the glories of Pomona's sway.

Lovely the prospect! – but of sweeter power
Beheld from PRINCE's bold aspiring TOWER!
The landscape opens, and its bounds extend,
As we the narrow eminence ascend;
Gay Nature's hand seems pencilling anew
Her choicest pictures to the ravish'd view.
What rich variety is here display'd!
What nicely blended hues of light and shade!
In deepest green yon waving woods appear;
Those fields a softer-tinted mantle wear;
While Spring's young blossoms chequer and perfume,
And her divinely-temper'd skies illume.
O beauteous portion of maternal earth!
What is the puny pomp of pageant's worth,
Compar'd to such elating scenes as this, -
Such spotless glory, and such guiltless bliss?

Although no THAMES, no AVON roll along,
No genius gifted with immortal song,
To sing thy praise, and celebrate thy fame,
With classic taste, - that magic of a name, -
Which penetrates beyond the passing hour,
And charms the soul with more than mortal power, -
With never-fading hopes enwreathed in light,
Which genius twines to shine for ever bright,
And blooms with freshness through unnumber'd years,
When earthly greatness sinks and disappears;
Yet even her may future bards arise,
To sing the mildness of thy genial skies,
And gayest notes arise to soothe the mind
By intellectual taste and joys refined.
Yes! here some soul of high imaginings
May sweep across the lyre's responsive strings,
Awaken sounds which never yet have rung,
Through grove or vale, or dropp'd from mortal tongue;
And bid new raptures in the bosom rise
To swell the grateful song of paradise!

Sweet spot of earth! – my pen can ne'er express
One half thy charms of rural loveliness!
For I have seen thee in thy vernal bloom
When first emerging from a wintry tomb,
With all thy flow'ry train bespangled wide,
Waving in graceful forms on ev'ry side;
While the salubrious, balmy breath of Spring
Seem'd to inspire new life in ev'rything;
When gay Aurora, blushing in the East,
Bid all creation on her beauties feast,
Darted a wishful glance, a potent ray,
O'er the bright landscape at the dawn of day,
Reflected rainbow hues of varied light
In every dew-drop glitt'ring in the sight;
While the soft zephyr, with enraptur'd kiss,
Snatch'd the sweet nectar of the honey'd bliss,
From fragrant flower, as pass'd the Spring away
To bring the sultry heat of Summer's day.

But the brief season of meridian heat
Has lost its terror in this cool retreat;
Where shadowy trees spread forth their arms in rows,
And ivy forms a canopy of boughs;
Admitting through some wild-flower-formed door
The balmy breezes from a sea-girt shore.
How sweet to wander through a shade like this,
And, free from care, to revel in its bliss!
Where the mind feels contented and at rest,
Detach'd from pride, by no false forms opprest,
Unconscious of the world's deceitful claims
Which keeps mankind in bondage and in chains!

Oh may I long in this sweet island dwell,
And bid for aye less calmer scenes farewell;
And long may I beneath those tow'ring trees,
Where graceful waves the long moss in the breeze,
Delighted rove, - to silent walks repair,
And taste the freshness of the balmy air;
Or gaze, enchanted, on the queen of night,
Rolling sublime amid yon isles of light.
Although no streams of Helicon arise,
No proud Parnassus meets the wishful eyes;
Still here mild beauty's happy, peaceful reign
Diffuses joy o'er every verdant plain,
And charms the heart with true poetic fire,
Bidding the landscape echo to the lyre!





Poetry in Jersey





La Société Jersiaise

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