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At my feet the city slumbered. From its chimneys, here and there,
Wreaths of snow-white smoke, ascending, vanished, ghost-like, into air.
Not a sound rose from the city at that early morning hour,
But I heard a heart of iron beating in the ancient tower.
From their nests beneath the rafters sang the swallows wild and high,
And the world, beneath me sleeping, seemed more distant than the sky.
Then most musical and solemn, bringing back the olden times,
With their strange, unearthly changes rang the melancholy chimes.
Like the psalms from some old cloister, when the nuns sing in the

choir;
And the great bell tolled among them, like the chanting of a friar.
Visions of the days departed, shadowy phantoms filled my brain;
They who live in history only seemed to walk the earth again;
All the Foresters of Flanders,-mighty Baldwin Bras de Fer,
Lyderick du Bucq and Cressy, Philip, Guy de Dampierre.
I beheld the pageants splendid, that adorned those days of old;
Stately dames, like queens attended, knights who bore the Fleece of

Gold; Lombard and Venetian merchants with deep-laden argosies ; Ministers from twenty nations; more than royal pomp and ease. I beheld proud Maximilian, kneeling humbly on the ground; I beheld the gentle Mary, hunting with her hawk and hound; And her lighted bridal chamber, where a duke slept with the queen, And the armed guard around them, and the sword unsheathed between. I beheld the Flemish weavers, with Namur and Juliers bold, Marching homeward from the bloody battle of the Spurs of Gold; Saw the fight at Minnewater, saw the White Hoods moving West, Saw great Artevelde victorious scale the Golden Dragon's nest And again the whiskered Spaniard all the land with terror smote; And again the wild alarum sounded from the tocsin's throat; Till the bell of Ghent responded o'er lagoon and dike of sand, “ I am Roland! I am Roland ! there is victory in the land !” Then the sound of drums aroused me. The awakened city's roar Chased the phantoms I had summoned back into their graves once more. Hours had passed away like minutes; and, before I was aware, Lo! the shadow of the belfry crossed the sun-illumined square.

THE ARSENAL AT SPRINGFIELD.

This is the Arsenal. From floor to ceiling,

Like a huge organ, rise the burnished arms;
But from their silent pipes no anthem pealing

Startles the villages with strange alarms.
Ah! what a sound will rise, how wild and dreary,

When the death-angel touches those swift keys!
What loud lament and dismal Miserere

Will mingle with their awful symphonies !
I hear even now the infinite fierce chorus,

The cries of agony, the endless groan,
Which, through the ages that have gone before us,

In long reverberations reach our own.
On helm and harness rings the Saxon hammer,

Through Cimbric forest roars the Norseman's song, And loud, amid the universal clamour,

O’er distant deserts sounds the Tartar gong. I hear the Florentine, who from his palace

Wheels out his battle-bell with dreadful din, And Aztec priests upon their teocallis

Beat the wild war-drums made of serpent's skin; The tumult of each sacked and burning village;

The shout that every prayer for mercy drowns;
The soldier's revels in the midst of pillage;

The wail of famine in beleaguered towns;
The bursting shell, the gateway wrenched asunder,

The rattling musketry, the clashing blade;
And ever and anon, in tones of thunder,

The diapason of the cannonade.
Is it, О man, with such discordant noises,

With such accursèd instruments as these,
Thou drownest Nature's sweet and kindly voices,

And jarrest the celestial harmonies ? Were half the power, that fills the world with terror,

Were half the wealth, bestowed on camps and courts, Given to redeem the human mind from error,

There were no need of arsenals nor forts :
The warrior's name would be a name abhorrèd !

And every nation that should lift again
Its hand against a brother, on its forehead

Would wear for evermore the curse of Cain !

Down the dark future, through long generations,

The echoing sounds grow fainter, and then cease;
And like a bell, with solemn, sweet vibrations,

I hear once more the voice of Christ say, “ Peace !"

Peace! and no longer from its brazen portals

The blast of War's great organ shakes the skies!
But beautiful as songs of the immortals,

The holy melodies of love arise

A GLEAM OF SUNSHINE.

This is the place. Stand still, my | Through the closed blinds the golden sun steed,

Poured in a dusty beam,
Let me review the scene,

Like the celestial ladder seen
And summon from the shadowy Past | By Jacob in his dream.
The forms that once have been.

And ever and anon the wind, The Past and Present here unite

Sweet-scented with the hay, Beneath Time's flowing tide, Turned o'er the hymn-book's fluttering Like footprints hidden by a brook,

leaves But seen on either side.

That on the window lay.
Here runs the highway to the town;

Long was the good man's sermon,
There the green lane descends,

Yet it seemed not so to me; Through which I walked to church | For he spake of Ruth the beautiful, with thee,

And still I thought of thee.
O gentlest of my friends!

Long was the prayer he uttered,
The shadow of the linden-trees

Yet it seemed not so to me;
Lay moving on the grass ;

For in my heart I prayed with him,
Between them and the moving boughs, And still I thought of thee.
A shadow, thou didst pass.

But now, alas! the place seems changed; Thy dress was like the lilies,

Thou art no longer here :
And thy heart as pure as they :

Part of the sunshine of the scene
One of God's holy messengers

With thee did disappear.
Did walk with me that day.

| Though thoughts, deep-rooted in my I saw the branches of the trees

heart, Bend down thy touch to meet, Like pine-trees, dark and high, The clover-blossoms in the grass Subdue the light of noon, and breathe Rise up to kiss thy feet.

A low and ceaseless sigh; "Sleep, sleep to-day, tormenting cares, This memory brightens o'er the past, Of earth and folly born!"

As when the sun, concealed Solemnly san; the village choir Behind some cloud that near us hangs, On that sweet Sabbath morn.

Shines on a distant field.

NUREMBERG.

In the valley of the Pegnitz, where across broad meadow-lands
Rise the blue Franconian mountains, Nuremberg the ancient stands.

Quaint old town of toil and traffic, quaint old town of art and song, Memories haunt thy pointed gables, like the rooks that round them

throng:

Memories of the Middle Ages, when the emperors, rough and bold, Had their dwelling in thy castle, time-defying, centuries old;

And thy brave and thrifty burghers boasted, in their uncouth rhyme, That their great imperial city stretched its hand through every clime.

In the court-yard of the castle, bound with many an iron band,
Stands the mighty linden planted by Queen Cunigunde's hand;

On the square the oriel window, where in old heroic days
Sat the poet Melchior singing Kaiser Maximilian's praise.

Everywhere I see around me rise the wondrous world of Art: Fountains wrought with richest sculpture standing in the common

mart;

And above cathedral doorways saints and bishops carved in stone,
By a former age commissioned as apostles to our own.

In the church of sainted Sebald sleeps enshrined his holy dust,
And in bronze the Twelve Apostles guard from age to age their trust;

In the church of sainted Lawrence stands a pix of sculpture rare, . Like the foamy sheaf of fountains, rising through the painted air.

Here, when Art was still religion, with a simple, reverent heart,
Lived and laboured Albrecht Dürer, the Evangelist of Art;

Hence in silence and in sorrow, toiling still with busy hand,
Like an emigrant he wandered, seeking for the Better Land.

Emigravit is the inscription on the tombstone where he lies;
Dead he is not, -but departed,- for the artist never dies.

Fairer seems the ancient city, and the sunshine seems more fair,
That he once has trod its pavement, that he once has breathed its air !

Through these streets so broad and stately, these obscure and dismal

lanes, Walked of yore the Master-singers, chanting rude poetic strains.

From remote and sunless suburbs, came they to the friendly guild, Building nests in Fame's great temple, as in spouts the swallows build.

As the weaver plied the shuttle, wove he too the mystic rhyme,
And the smith his iron measures hammered to the anvil's chime;

Thanking God, whose boundless wisdom makes the flowers of poesy

bloom In the forge's dust and cinders, in the tissues of the loom.

Here Hans Sachs, the cobbler-poet, laureate of the gentle craft, Wisest of the Twelve Wise Masters, in huge folios sang and laughed.

But his house is now an ale-house, with a nicely sanded floor,
And a garland in the window, and his face above the door;

Painted by some humble artist, as in Adam Puschman's song,
As the old man gray and dove-like, with his great beard white and long.

And at night the swart mechanic comes to drown his cark and care, Quaffing ale from pewter tankards, in the master's antique chair.

Vanished is the ancient splendour, and before my dreamy eye
Wave these mingling shapes and figures, like a faded tapestry.

Not thy Councils, not thy Kaisers, win for thee the world's regard; But thy painter, Albrecht Dürer, and Hans Sachs, thy cobbler-bard.

Thus, O Nuremberg, a wanderer from a region far away,
As he paced thy streets and court-yards, sang in thought his careless

lay:

Gathering from the pavement's crevice, as a floweret of the soil,
The nobility of labour,—the long pedigree of toil.

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