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MIGHT HAVE BEEN.

The winter's snow lay on the fields, the trees were gaunt and bare,
An aged woman mused alone in a quaint old rocking chair,
The embers of a dying fire lay scattered on the grate,
And the pale lips of the withered one kept muttering " Too late."

"I was but ten years old that day, a winter's day like this,
And I took, as if it were my due, my father's birthday kiss;
I pouted ere the day was gone, that my present was not grand,
And I threw a gloom upon our home, and our little playful band.

"My mother shed some tears that night when we had finished play,
Oh, foolish that I did not climb to kiss them all away!
I wondered and felt sorrowful, but forgot it in my dreams.
Was it sixty years ago to-day? But yesterday it seems.

"She died a few weeks after that. I was not there to see,
But they said she left some loving words and gentle looks for me;
Oh, mother will there come a day when I shall cease to yearn
That for one little hour at least thy spirit might return?

"I might have soothed her aching brow, I might have saved her feet
Some weary steps about the house, some journeys through the street,
I never need have given her pain, nor dimmed her dear dark eyes—
Oh, that she would forgive me though she spoke it from the skies.

"And Harry went away to sea; I might have kept him here:
We quarrelled; and I saw him go, and never shed a tear.
But how my heart has ached since then for a brother's look and tone!
How dreary is a wintry night while sitting here alone!

"I might have hushed the stinging word, and stayed the angry breath;
I think he hated me that day; and he has met his death;;
And never sent a little word of love to cheer my heart.
But then, my brother, it was I who caused thee to depart.

"Then Charlie came. How good he was, how beautiful and brave!
I think of all he said to me beside the sad sea waves,
I had some holy thoughts that day; they ebbed a* did the tide—
I should have lived a better life with Charlie at my side.

"A stranger came across my path, a stranger grim and cold,
But he told me I was beautiful, and he bought me with his gold;
I never loved the stern dark man, though I gave to him my hand,
And frowned,—till Charlie went away to a far and foreign land. >.

"Ah! Charlie! Charlie! He had grief, but I have had the most;
The memories of that olden time throng round me like a host;
What weary days, what dreary nights came in those after years!
But I could not wash the wrong away with all my bitter tears.

"And yet my husband loved me, and I might have blessed his life;
But I made it dark with vexing care, and over-full of strife.
I wronged him with the others, and I sorrow for him yet,—
'Tis sad to be so weary, and unable to forget.

"No little children kissed my face, or stroked my changing hair;

I think I should have sinned the less through listening to their prayer;

That joy was not for such as I—I might have trained them ill;

I've been complaining all my life, and now I should be still.

"But what a wasted life it is! Though I might have made it grand
With love, and kindliness and worth, with tender heart and hand;
With sacrifice of self and pride, and lowliness of heart,
I might have lived a better life and done a better part.

"Too late, too late! I am very old, and nigh to death to-day;
I cannot plant a single flower in all my dreary way,
And not a single sunbeam falls upon the darkened scene.
My heart is sad and sorrowful for what I might have been."

The winter's snow lay on the fields, the trees were gaunt and bare,
As the aged woman mused thus in that old rocking chair;
But she looked toward the open door with fear and with surprise,
As an old man came toward her with the summer in his eyes.

"What! not forgotten, Charlie, though the snows of many years
Have fallen on our bowing heads, and filled our eyes with tears!
But waste not now the moments few that lie the grave between,
In murmurings and repinings over what might once have been.

"There is a love so deep, so true, and so unlike to ours,
It washes all our sins away, it falls in cleansing showers,
It is a love that can forgive, a guiding, strengthening love,
That lifts us from our wasted lives to a perfect life above."

The winter's snow lay on the fields, the trees were gaunt and bare;
But the aged woman no more mused in that old rocking chair,—
Her hand was in another hand as wrinkled as her own,
And a light was in her dying eyes, and a joy was in her tone.

"It was the sweetest lesson I have learned amid my strife:
The love that Jesus can forgive even a wasted life.
I would that all who weep as I, over what might have been,
Could know what I have known to-day and see what I have seen."'

The winter's snow lay on the fields, the trees were gaunt and bare;
But the aged, sinning, suffering one no longer sorrowed there; ;. . ..
Only a grave old man went forth, to linger for a day—
Until the angels also came to carry him away. . (.

From a forthcoming new volume of Poems, by Marianne Farninoham. UP THE THAMES TO OXFORD.

By Felix Remex.

A short time ago I proposed to row up the Thames to Oxford by myself, or with the help of any friend who might feel disposed for a day's pulling. I thought that the progress against stream would be much preferable to the run down; and although my progress might be slow, the points of the river would be more impressed on my mind.

Our starting-place was Putney; and a friend agreed to give his assistance for the first day, but being detained in the city, we had to work hard in order to keep the tide up to Teddington, so we did not stop at any objects of interest. However, we had time and breath enough to notice the house of the late ViceChancellor Shadwell, famed for his love of the water, and who, on one occasion, actually heard some depositions read to him as he was swimming in mid-Thames. Nor did we forget to admire the pretty church at Chiswick, where lie the mortal remains of William Hogarth. But as this part of the Thames is so well known, nothing need be said about it here. The first four and a half miles, are the course over which the Oxford and Cambridge crews row their annual race, and the excitement which that event causes is never to be forgotten by those who have once witnessed it. It is the event of the river. Some six miles from Putney we come to Kew Bridge, and then up to Richmond is a very pleasant and pretty reach. Kew Gardens on the Surrey side, and well-wooded islands (or eyots, pronounced aits) on the other side, give a sort of earnest of what we may expect further up the river. Syon House is rather teasing to a tired oarsman, inasmuch as you row all round it, and from different points see all its four sides. But it is not a place to be despised, and quite worthy of the Duke of Northumberland.

The Thames at Richmond does not present itself in so attractive a point of view when you are on it as it does when seen from the ter

race on the hill, but, on the other hand, from the water you get good and near views of many interesting houses. The Duke of Buccleucb's. situated on the Surrey side, a little above Richmond Bridge, is well-admired for its beauty, and hated by all bargemen, owing to 'the fact that the towing-path is stopped by its grounds, and horses and men have to go round the back of the house and then make fast the towing-rope from the other end of the grounds. This is the only instance I know on the Thames where private grounds interfere with the public towingpath, and it is a public nuisance, for which, I believe, we are indebted to that "merrie monarch," Charles II. A little higher up, on the other side, is Orleans House, the residence of the Due d'Aumale; and opposite is Ham House, famous as the abode of the Duchess of Lauderdale, and the meeting-place of the famous Cabal in opposition to Clarendon.

We must pass by the Eel Pie Island, and only take a passing look at the gimcrack building now erected on the site of Pope's Villa. On Strawberry Hill above is Horace Walpole's celebrated house, now occupied by Frances Countess Waldegrave, daughter of the great English singer, Braham. When I saw it some dozen years ago, it was sadly out of order, but lately, I learn, it has been renovated and restored. We now pass by many pleasant houses, and come to our first look at Teddington. Having been hard pressed all the way from Putney, some twelve miles, we put in below the lock, and take rest and refreshment. After an hour's delay (during which time we punished the cold beef rather severely) we start again, and getting through Teddington Lock, find ourselves on a pleasant and open part of the river. Just above the lock is a house covered with a splendid wisteria, which is greatly admired by all passers-by during the time it is in flower. Eight miles from Richmond Brid

we come to Kingston Bridge. It is a curious fact, that nearly all the bridges over the Thames are eight miles apart. Kingston presents few features of interest from the river so we do not delay, but prepare to pull steadily against the stream, which is now rather sharp against us up to Moulsey.

The river gets more attractive as we pass Ditton: the excellencies of the Swan Inn have been versified by Theodore Hook, and some twenty years ago were well tested by a large circle of London literary men. Lord St. Leonard's house here is celebrated for the beauty of its laws; but we are now nearing Hampton Court Palace, which cannot be looked upon without interest, although we may not stop to look at Raphael's Cartoons, Charles II.'s beauties, or the very interesting historical paintings and portraits which adorn its walls. Still we can see the British public enjoying themselves, and can hear the merry laugh of children playing, which makes us feel thankful that such a palace and such gardens are open to the public freely and gratuitously. At Moulsey we see the Hampton race-course, and on the Middlesex side, Garrick's Villa, once the property and favourite residence of the great master of the histrionic art.

Before getting to Sunbury, on the Middlesex bank, is a pleasant little cottage, at present occupied by the Rev. J. C. M. Bellew; but at Sunbury Lock we must stop, as experiments in the artificial breeding of fish are being carried on here under the superintendence of Mr. Ponder. We found a very civil attendant, who told us that he had 20,000 young salmon, as many trout, and 2,000 char under his charge, which would very shortly be ready to go into the open river. May the experiment prove successful! If Mr. Ponder and Dr. Frank Buckland cannot succeed at present, certainly they are on the right way.

We now began to think of stopping for the night, and the prospect of dinner gave a little spirit to our rowing. The curious long double bridge at Walton was soon reached,

and the splendid spur of the hill of Oatlands Park was above us. Coray Stakes, where Julius Caesar is said to have crossed the Thames, is only marked by a couple of trees, but it has been a rare and very troublesome nut for antiquarians to crack.

After Haterford we see the house of W. S. Lindsay, Esq., at Shepperton, which boasts of the handsomest lawn on the river. The church adjoining was at one time in the occupation of Grocyn, the friend of Erasmus, who often visited him here. But we stop for the night, and soon find comfortable quarters at the Anchor Inn.

In the morning a bathe of course, and then a little stroll, so we go to Oatlands to look at the famous grotto, built at a cost of .£40,000, and only used once, and the cemetery of the Duchess of York's pet dogs and monkeys. We counted between sixty and seventy tombstones to the departed darlings, and some ornamented with poetical epitaphs. Then through Oatlands Park to Walton Church, where we all try on the scold's bridle, admire the chef d'eeuvie of Roubiliac, the monument to Viscount Shannon, nor do we pass without notice the curious brass to John Selwyn, who killed a stag at the feet of Queen Elizabeth after leaping from his horse on to the stag's back; the grave of John Lily, the astrologer, and last, but not least, the grave of Dr. Maginn, which we regret ted to find unmarked and unnoticed in the pathway of the churchyard. It was not easy for us to find it, and even now, the site is not very certain.

We return to Shepperton along the towing-path, but, before starting, let me call the attention of the disciples of Izaac Walton to the advantages which this part of the river offers to anglers. The water is well preserved, the fishermen are all civil and up to their work, while the inns are clean and good. The distance from the station keeps much of these deeps free from casual Cockney visitors. What with good sport and lovely scenery, he must be a very discontented man who cannot enjoy a fine day on Walton deeps.

A GLANCE AT THE MISSION FIELD.

[We have been asked to take ''a Glance at the Mission Field." A noble work: and yet so wide in its range, so diversified in its area, and so teeming in its incident, that to do full justice to it would tire an eagle's wing, a prophet's gaze, and an evangelist's pen. A few broken glimpses of that wide and wondrous scene are all that we can now attempt.]

It is eighty years ago; and we enter a shoemaker's shop in the little village of Moulton, in Northamptonshire. Strictly speaking he is a cobbler, as he would tell you, for he is not a first-rate workman, and is not, therefore, so often entrusted with the charge of making shoes as of mending them. Withal he is the pastor of the little Baptist Chapel in the village. But the flock, like its shepherd, is poor, and can raise a salary of only £11 a-year; so the pastor must betake himself to some other means of supplementing his narrow stipend. He accordingly falls back upon the trade to which, when a lad, he had been apprenticed; and once a fortnight the neighbours see him with his wallet of boot s and shoes upon his shoulder, trudging off eight or ten miles to Northampton, and returning home with a fresh store of leather for future use.

We enter the shop, and soon we find that our friend the shoemaker has taste for literature as well as leather; for on the wall hangs a large map made of a number of pieces of paper pasted together, on which he has drawn with a. pen a place for every nation of the known world, and has entered sundry figures and memoranda relative to the numbers and religion of the people. For that lowly man, in that obscure village, is oppressed by a grand and sacred conviction that lies heavily on his heart and conscience. It is strange that so humble a man should have it—but he has it; and he accounts it as a very burden of the Lord. His idea is—a novel one in those days—that the Christian Church ought to labour directly and anxiously for the conversion of the heathen.

He has mentioned it to private friends, and also at several meetings of ministers, but at that time the

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lethargy of the Churches was profound. "Was there a shield or spear seen among the thousands in Israel?" No. And the most venerable of his hearers declared his Scheme to be wild and impracticable. "Young man," exclaimed Mr. Ryland, senior, " sit down; when God pleases to convert the heathen, He will do it without your aid or mine." Even Mr. Fuller was startled by the novelty and magnitude of the proposal; and subsequently described his feelings as resembling those of the doubter of Israel: "If the Lord should make windows in heaven, might such a thing be?" But the unbelief of others did not efface the convictions of his heart; and he "would converse with us one by one," says his biographer, "till he had made some impression upon us." That humble shoe-making village pastor was William Carey, scholar and missionary, and virtual founder of the Baptist Missionary Society.

At length his earnest words prevailed. On the 2nd of October, 1792, a meeting was held at Kettering for prayer, counsel, and action. There were only twelve or thirteen present, and they were without funds or influence or experience of the mode of either originating or carrying on such a work; yet with noble daring they resolved to embark upon an enterprise which contemplated nothing less than the conversion of the heathen world; and in faith and love they gathered up the first ollerings by means of which they were to give effect to their resolution. The total amount was £ IS 2s. Od.; but it was a collection to which those who stand nearest the throne would have gloried in aiding, and it was the harbinger of millions of gold that have since been devoted upon the altar of God to the cause of modern Christian missions.

"A Glance at the Mission Field." c

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