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XX-IN A HUNDRED YEARS.

I.
T will be all the same in a hundred years.

I and tears :

How oft do I muse, 'mid the thoughtless and gay,
On the marvelous truth that these words co

convey !
And can it be so? Must the valiant and free
Hold their tenure oi 'fe on this frail decree?
Are the trophies they've reared and the glories they've won
Only castles of frost-work confronting the sun ?
And must all that's as joyous and brilliant to view
As a midsummer dream, be as perishing too?
Then have pity, ye proud ones; be gentle, ye great.
O, remember how mercy beseemeth your state:
For the rust that consumeth the sword of the brave,
Eats, too, at the chain of the manacled slave;
And the conqueror's frowns and his victim's tears
Will be all the same in a hundred years.

II.

How dark are your fortunes, ye sons of the soil,
Whose heirloom is sorrow, whose birthright is toil !
Yet envy not those who have glory and gold
By the sweat of the poor and the blood of the bold:
For 'tis coming-howe'er they may flaunt in their pride-
The day when they'll moulder to dust by your side.
For Time, as he speeds on invisible wings,
Disenamels and withers earth's costliest things.
And the knight's white plume, and the shepherd's crook
And the minstrel's pipe, and the scholar's book,
And the emperor's crown, and his Cossacks' spears,
Will be dust alike in a hundred years.

III.

Then what meaneth the chase after phantom joys,
And the breaking of human hearts for toys,
And the veteran's pride in his crafty schemes,
And the passion of youth for its darling dreams,
And the aiming at ends we never can span,
And the deadly aversion of man for man?
To what end is this conflict of hopes and fears,
If 'tis all the same in a hundred years ?

IV.

Ah, 'tis not the same in a hundred years,
How clear soever that motto appears.
For know ye not that beyond the grave,
Far, far beyond where the cedars wave
On the Syrian mountains, and where the stars
Come glittering forth in their golden cars,
There bloometh a land of perennial bliss,
Where we smile to think of the tears in this?
And the pilgrim reaching that radiant shore
Hath the thought of death in his heart no more,
But layeth his staff and sandals down
For the victor's wreath and the angel's crown:
And the mother meets in that tranquil sphere
The delightful child she had wept for here:
And the warrior's sword, who protects the right,
Is bejeweled with stars of undying light;
And we quaff of the same immortal cup,
While the orphan smiles, and the slave looks up.
Then be glad, my heart, and forget thy tears ;
For 'tis not the same in a hundred years !

XXI.-ZENOBIA'S AMBITION.

I

AM charged with pride and ambition. The charge is

true, and I glory in its truth. Who ever achieved any thing great in letters, arts, or arms, who was not ambitious ? Cæsar was not more ambitious than Cicero. It was but in another way. Let the ambition be a noble one, and who shall blame it? I confess I did once aspire to be queen, not only of Palmyra, but of the East. That I am.

I now aspire to remain so. Is it not an honorable ambition ? Does it not become a descendant of the Ptolemies and of Cleopatra ?

2. I am applauded by you all for what I have already done. You would not it should have been less. But why pause here? Is so much ambition praiseworthy, and more criminal ? Is it fixed in nature that the limits of this empire should be Egypt, on the one hand, the Hellespont and the Euxine, on the other? Were not Suez and Armenia more natural limits? Or hath empire no natural limit, but is broad as the genius that can devise, and the power that can win ?

3. Rome has the West. Let Palmyra possess the East. Not that nature prescribes this and no more.

The gods prospering, and I swear not that the Mediterranean shall hem me in upon the west, or Persia on the east. Longi'nus is right,- I would that the world were mine. I feel, within, the will and the power to bless it, were it so.

4. Are not my people happy? I look upon the past and the present, upon my nearer and remoter subjects, and ask, nor fear the answer. Whom have I wronged ?—What province have I oppressed? What city pillaged? What region drained with taxes? Whose life have I unjustly taken, or estates coveted or robbed ? Whose honor have I wantonly assailed? Whose rights, though of the weakest and poorest, have I trenched upon ? I dwell, where I would ever dwell, in the hearts of my people. It is written in your faces, that I reign not more over you than within you. The foundation of my throne is not more power, than love.

5. Suppose now, my ambition add another province to our realm. Is it an evil? The kingdoms already bound to us by the joint acts of ourself and the late royal Odena'tus, we found discordant and at war. They are now united and at peace. One harmonious whole has grown out of hostile and sundered parts. At my hands they receive a common justice and equal benefits. The channels of their commerce have I opened, and dug them deep and sure. Prosperity and plenty are in all their borders. The streets of our capital bear testimony to the distant and various industry which here seeks its market.

6. This is no vain boasting :-receive it not so, good friends. It is but truth. He who traduces himself, sins with him who traduces another. He who is unjust to himself, or less than just, breaks a law, as well as he who hurts his neighbor. I tell you what I am, and what I have done, that your trust for the future may not rest upon ignorant grounds. If I am more than just to myself, rebuke me. If I have overstepped the modesty that became me, I am open to your censure, and will bear it.

7. But I have spoken, that you may know your queen, not only by her acts, but by her admitted principles. I tell you then that I am ambitious,—that I crave dominion, and while I live will reign. Sprung from a line of kings, a throne is my natural seat. I love it. But I strive, too,you can bear me witness that I do,—that it shall be, while I sit upon it, an honored, unpolluted seat. If I can, I will hang a yet brighter glory around it.

WILLIAM WARE.

XXII.THE LAUNCH OF THE SHIP.

I.

“B'Staunch and strong, a goodly

vessel,

UILD me

a That shall laugh at all disaster,

And with wave and whirlwind wrestle!”

II.

The merchant's word
Delighted the Master heard;
For his heart was in his work, and the heart,
Giveth grace unto every art.
And with a voice that was full of glee,
He answered, “Ere long we will launch
A vessel as goodly, and strong, and staunch
As ever weathered a wintry sea!”

III.

All is finished ! and at length
Has come the bridal day
Of beauty and of strength.
To-day the vessel shall be launched !
With fleecy clouds the sky is blanched;

And o'er the bay,
Slowly, in all his splendors dight,
The great sun rises to behold the sight.

IV.

The ocean old,
Centuries old,
Strong as youth, and as uncontrolled,
Paces restless to and fro,
Up and down the sands of gold.
His beating heart is not at rest;
And far and wide,
With ceaseless flow,
His beard of snow
Heaves with the heaving of his breast.

1

V.

He waits impatient for his bride.
There she stands,
With her foot upon the sands,
Decked with flags and streamers gay,
In honor of her marriage-day,
Her snow-white signals fluttering, blending,
Round her like a veil descending,
Ready to be
The bride of the gray, old sea.

VI.

Then the Master,
With a gesture of command,
Waved his hand;
And at the word,
Loud and sudden there was heard,
All around them and below,
The sound of hammers, blow on blow,
Knocking away the shores and spurs.
And see! she stirs !
She starts,—she moves,—she seems to feel
The thrill of life along her keel,
And, spurning with her foot the ground,
With one exulting, joyous bound,
She leaps into the ocean's arms !

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