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When it was discovered that Bryant was not its author, those journals which had been most bountiful in their encomiums upon its merit, felt much chagrined, while others laughed at the joke. In justice to the innocent author, whom many have censured for this deception, unmeaningly committed, we will explain its publication. It was originally a part of a poem delivered some years ago by Mr. Weston before the Phi Beta Kappa of Bowdoin College, and which consisted entirely of imitations of the most distinguished American poets. How well he succeeded in his imitations, A Vision of Immortality,' will show to the reader. A better imitation of Bryant could not, we venture to say, be made. The poem was published as a ' Sequel to Thanatopsis,' with the consent of the poet Bryant, by Mr. Weston personally obtained. It matters not, as far as its literary merit is concerned, whether it was written by the one or the other, and those editors who so foolishly revoked their flattering notices when a more humble name claimed its authorship, done themselves but little credit. As the production of Mr. Weston, it is a perfect imitation, while as that of Mr. Bryant, it would be nothing more than his old familiar style of writing.
Mr. Weston is now, and has been for some time past, an assistant editor of the Eclectic,' a popular literary weekly journal, published at Portland. He is a man of fine talents, a superior teacher, and a gentlemen of high standing in private life. He is married, and resides in the town of Gorham, where his flourishing school is situated. Although a man of abundant talent, he has written nothing of any great length by which to acquire a reputation outside of our own State, except A Vision of Immortality,' which, with Lines written at the Falls of the Passaic,' and the Two Hands,' we consider the finest specimens of his poetic talent that we have seen.
A VISION OF IMMORTALITY:
A SEQUEL TO THANATOPSIS' AND 'THE HYMN TO DEATH.'
I, WHо essayed to sing in earlier days
Yet once again, O man, come forth and view
Enter the silent groves, or pierce again
The depths of the untrodden wilderness,
Thou hast learned before
One lesson; and her Hymn of Death has fallen
And the mystery of the seed's decay
The flowers that spring above their last year's grave
Yet not alone shall flower and forest raise
The voice of triumph and the hymn of life.
In its glad beauty from the gloom of death.
Where the crushed mould beneath the sunken foot
Seems but the sepulchre of old decay,
Turn thou a keener glance, and thou shalt find
The gathered myriads of a mimic world.
Bears on its wing a cloud of witnesses,
That earth from her unnumbered caves of death
Raise then the Hymn to Immortality!
Kings that lay down in state, and earth's poor slaves,
The white-haired patriarch and the tender babe,
Archon and priest, and the poor common crowd, -
Aye, learn the lesson.
Though the worm shall be
Thy brother in the mystery of death!
And all shall pass, humble and proud and gay
Together, to earth's mighty charnel-house,
Yet the Immortal is thy heritage!
The grave shall gather thee! — Yet thou shalt come,
In rags or purple, but arrayed as those
Then mourn not when thou markest the decay
That other voice, with its rejoicing tones,
Breaks from the mould with every bursting flower. 'O grave! thy victory!' And thou, O man, Burdened with sorrow at the woes that crowd
Thy narrow heritage, lift up thy head.
The dear departed that have passed away
To the still house of death, leaving thine own,
The gray-haired sire that died in blessing thee, Mother or sweet-lipped babe, or she who gave Thy home the light and bloom of Paradise, They shall be thine again, when thou shalt pass At God's appointment, through the shadowy vale, To reach the sunlight of the IMMORTAL HILLS.
And thou that gloriest to lie down with kings,
So live, that when the mighty caravan,