Poems and Essays

by Joseph Howe




The Moonbeams slept upon the Wave
    Which scarce a wand’ring zephyr curl’d,
And with their silvery brightness gave
    Dreams of a fairer, holier world.

The distant Isles their shadows threw,
    Dark’ning the water’s fair expanse,
While Nature’s placid stillness drew
    By witchery forth the Soul’s romance.

A rapture o’er our spirits broke
    Till that still hour unknown before,
And many a thought which love awoke
    Was utter’d on that lovely shore.

For wild and lonely was the scene
    On which the sacred beams descended,
Rock, Isle and Wave, and Forest green,
    In lights and shades were softly blended. [Page 106]

Along the pebbly Beach we stray’d,
    And gazed upon the shining Sea,
And rais’d our eyes to Heaven, and pray’d
    As bright and calm our lives might be.

The drowsy world has sought repose,
    No wandering footstep lingered near
To check thy song, which sweetly rose
    Like fairy music on the ear.

Your cheek was pillow’d on my breast,
    My arm around you fondly clung,
And, as the Bird bend’s o’er its nest,
    In hope and joy o’er thee I hung.

And from the glorious bright array
    Which Nature spread before the sight,
Turn’d, half unconsciously away,
    To watch your eye’s unsullied light.

The Pilgrim, thus, ’midst fairest bowers,
    One cherish’d, deep sensation feels,
Nor heeds the rich and fragrant flowers,
    While to his guardian Saint he kneels.
1827. [Page 107]