Page images
PDF
EPUB

in discharging pistol bullets. These are fired, in rapid succession, from a single gun barrel against a metal target, one hundred feet distant, and they are completely flattened on it; this, however, is not equal to the effect of a horse pistol, and it is much inferior to that produced by the discharge of a musket. The rapidity of the discharge is, however, to be considered; but, if we reflect that coals, water, pipes, a generator, and furnace, are all requisite to keep up the necessary supply of steam, we shall find that as much bulk and weight are attached to a single gun barrel as would equal that of a field piece, which, in my opinion, would discharge more grape, and with infinitely greater force in a given time, than the whole of Mr. Perkins' apparatus.

The elastic force, indeed, of steam may be increased by an increased heat, and hence a greater power will be obtained; but, to effect this, there must be a proportionable increase of the size of the pipes, generator, furnące, &c. and this in a much greater degree than is usually supposed even by practical men. It is also to be kept in mind, that there is a limit to the expansibility of steam, which the nature of materials will not allow us to go beyond ; and we may presume that no practical use will ever be made of steam beyond one or two thousand pounds on the square inch. Indeed, when we reflect that, at a temperature of seven hundred degrees Fabrenheit, steam only occupies four times the space of water, wbilst, at a temperature of two hundred twelve degrees, it expands 18,000 times, we will discover another difficulty in the fact, that one quarter of the power generated would be required to force the water into the generator, which must be proportionably large to raise so much water to so high a temperature, and keep up that constant stream of it which is absolutely necessary for sustaining a continuous discharge of balls even from so small a bore as that of a gun barrel. What then will we think of an attempt to apply steam to the discharge of ordnance ? This, indeed, requires no serious attention, and it is my opinion, after a careful examination of the subject, that a twenty four pounder steam cannon, equally effective with our common guns of the same calibre never will be constructed the thing is manifestly impossible.

POETRY.

ORIGINAL.

TO A FRIEND. We've met again,—and life is still,

The same bright, radiant, sunny thing, As when our young hearts drank their fill

From holy friendship's purest spring.

Though lovely was that summer hour,

When kneeling at her sacred shrine, We bound beneath her deep-felt power

Around our souls her wreath divine.

Though deepest in our bosoms shrin'd,

Shall be the time when first we met,
Still, still the wreath our young hands twin'd

Is on our hearts, green, fadeless yet.

Though on our life's bright morning sky,

The clouds of sorrow have been seen,They pass'd and left a sweeter dye,

A deeper, more divine serene.

We've shed on pale cold brows the tear,

And clos'd the eyes we lov'd so well, But ah! the soul that made them dear

Had gone where glorious spirits dwell.

Why should the heart of man be sad ?

The air, the Ocean and the Earth Are fill'd with beings free and glad,

Rejoicing in their happy birth.

The starry sky is bright and blue,

Its smile of love on Earth bestowing, And all that meets the admiring view

With beauty, light and life is glowing.

Then let us pledge those happy hours,

And call their sweetest moments back, When first we stray'd through Learning's bowers,

And gaz'd on Science's radiant track.

Oh! then we listen’d to the lyre

Of some high bard, whose stirring strains Awoke within our breasts the fire

That kindled in his glowing veins.

[merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors]
[merged small][ocr errors][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small]

SELECTED.
OUR LADY'S WELL.*

BY MRS. HEMANS.
Fount of the Woods! thou art hid no more
From Heaven's clear eye, as in time of yore!
For the roof hath sunk from thy mossy walls,
And the Sun's free glance on thy slumber falls,
And the dim tree shadows across the pass,
As the bonighs are sway'd o'er thy silvery glass,
And the reddening leaves to thy breast are blown,
When the Autumn wind hath a stormy tone,
And thy bubbles rise to the flashing rain-
Bright Fount! thou art Nature's own again!

Fount of the Vale! thou art sought no more
By the Pilgrim's foot, as in time of yore,
When he came from afar, his beads to tell,
And to chaunt his hymn, at our Lady's well.
There is heard no Ave through thy bowers,
Thou art gleaming lone midst thy water flowers;
But the herd may drink from thy gushing wave,
And there may the reaper his forehead lave,
And the woodman seeks thee not in vain-
Bright Fount! thou art Nature's own again!
Fount of the Virgin's ruin'd shrine !
A voice that speaks of the past is thine!
It mingles the tone of a thoughtful sigh
With the notes that ring through the laughing sky;
Midst the mirthful song of the summer bird,

And the sound of the breeze, it will yet be heard !
* There is a beautiful Spring in North Wales, formerly dedicated to the
Virgin, and much frequented by Pilgrims.

Why is it that thus we may look on thee;
To the festal sunshine sparkling free?
"Tis that all on earth of Time's domain-
He hath made thee Nature's own again!

Fount of the Chapel with ages' grey!
Thou art springing freshly amidst decay!
Thy rites are past, and thy Cross lies low,
And the changeful hours breathe o'er thee now!
Yet if at thine altar one holy thought
In man's deep spirit of old hath wrought,
If peace to the mourner hath heré been given,
Or prayer from a chasten'd heart to Heaven,
Be the spot still hallow'd while Time shall reign,
Who hath made thee Nature's own again!

FROM "LONDON IN TRE OLDEN TIME."

THE GREENWOOD TREE.
The greenwood tree; the greenwood tree!
He is fair and tall and goodly to see;
IIe lifteth his leafy head to the sky,
And spreadeth his green arms wide on bigh.
The wind may blow, he hears it not ;
The storm may rage, he fears it not ;
He puts forth his arms rejoicingly,
And for king and baron careth not he-
And we will be like thee, greenwood tree:

The greenwood tree! the greenwood tree!
Goodly shelter granteth he
To the birds that on his boughs are singing,
To the flowers that at his foot are springing,
His shade is sought by the dappled doe,
When the merry archer bends his bow,
And the hare and the kid to his broad shade flee,
For the weak and the succourless sheltereth he;
And we will be like thee, greenwood tree.

Then hail to thee! thrice hail to thee !
Pride of the forest, greenwood tree!
Who givest alike to thy good schawe
To the proud baron and the bold outlaw ;
When the north winds blow, may it shake thee not;
When the lightning glares, may it scathe thee not
But, when we are gone where all shall be,
May thy gallant branches wave wide and free,
Pride of the forest, greenwood tree!

65

ORIGINAL.

A VISIT IN CAXADA.

CHAPTER SF.COND. In the depths of the forest, a profound and solemn silence reigns, yobroken except by the murmur of waters or the rushing of winds. The flutter of the dove nestling among the thick leaves and raising her many colored neck to peep out at the passer, the whirring sound of the partridge starting in surprise from her covert, the shrill but not unmusical voices of the white winged birds sporting on the lake, or the half heard tread of the wild beast prowling around with stealthy pace, if they fall occasionally upon the car, relieve the oppressive sense of loneliness. They come as witnesses that the pulse of life has not ceased, and that all animated existence is not extinct. The feeling of solitude comes more heavily upon the soul in the silent watches of the night, than in the broad day, when the sun beams play among the branches, and the quivering shadows are thrown over the path way. Then it seems as if nature held her Sabbath of rest. The stars glide on in their silent courses in the depths of the blue sky: the moon shines coldly down.

The fires kindled in front of the green encampment of the hunter, make the darkness around seem more thick and dense ; the insects, except the busy gnat and active musqueto, have folded up their wings and retired to their little chambers to sleep. There is not even the drowsy hum of the beetle to disturb the calm solemnity of the scene. In such a situation we should almost welcome the surly bear to share with us our pillows, and rejoice in the society of a troop of wolves almost as much as in the meeting of those we hold dearest. It is a species of solitary confinement where the wide woods on either hand are the walls of the prison. The companionship of the deadliest enemy would be acceptable, and the fear of the death blow would be wholly overcome by the gratification of knowing we could receive even injury from a fellow being.

The sources of some of the magnificent Rivers which scatter fertility over the vast regions traversed by their channels are embosomed in the solitude of the Kennebec forest. In the space of a single day's march, the traveller may quench his thirst from the head streams of the noble Penobscot and the beautiful Kennebec, flowing southward through the rich territory of the Eastern section of the Union; and recline on the banks of the De Loup, which taking a

« PreviousContinue »