Oldalképek
PDF
ePub

LULLABY.

SLEEP, little baby, sleep, love, sleep!

Evening is coming, and night is nigh ; Under the lattice the little birds cheep, All will be sleeping by and by.

Sleep, little baby, sleep.

Sleep, little baby, sleep, love, sleep !

Darkness is creeping along the sky; Stars at the casement glimmer and peep, Slowly the moon comes sailing by.

Sleep, little baby, sleep.

Sleep, little baby, sleep, love, sleep!

Sleep till the dawning has dappled the sky; Under the lattice the little birds cheep, All will be waking by and by.

Sleep, little baby, sleep.

ISLE OF WIGHT_SPRING, 1891.

I KNOW not what the cause may be,

Or whether there be one or many; But this year's Spring has seemed to me

More exquisite than any.

What happy days we spent together

In that fair Isle of primrose flowers !

How brilliant was the April weather !

What glorious sunshine and what showers !

I think the leaves peeped out and in

At every change from cold to heat ; The grass threw off a livelier sheen

From dewdrops sparkling at our feet.

What wealth of early bloom was there

The wind flow'r and the primrose pale, On bank or copse, and orchis rare,

And cowslip covering Wroxhall dale.

And, oh, the splendour of the sea,

The blue belt glimmering soft and far, Through many a tumbled rock and tree

Strewn 'neath the overhanging scar!

'Tis twenty years and more, since here,

As man and wife we sought this Isle, Dear to us both, O wife most dear,

And we can greet it with a smile.

Not now alone we come once more,

But bringing young ones of our broodOne boy (Salopian), and four

Girls, blooming into maidenhood.

And I had late begun to fret

And sicken at the sordid town-
The crime, the guilt, and, loathlier yet,

The helpless, hopeless sinking down ;

The want, the misery, the woe,

The stubborn heart which will not turn; The tears which will or will not flow;

The shame which does or does not burn.

And Winter's frosts had proved unkind,

With darkest gloom and deadliest cold; A time which will be brought to mind,

And talked of, when our boys are old.

And thus the contrast seemed to wake

New vigour in the heart and brain; Sea, land, and sky conspired to make

The jaded spirit young again;

Or hopes for growing girl or boy,

Or thankfulness for things that be, Or sweet content in wedded joy,

Set all the world to harmony.

And so I know not if it be

That there are causes one or many, But this year's Spring still seems to me

More exquisite than any.

LOVE AND LIBERTY.

The linnet had flown from its cage away,
And flitted and sang in the light of day-
Had flown from the lady who loved it well,
In Liberty's freer air to dwell.
Alas! poor bird, it was soon to prove,
Sweeter than Liberty is Love.

When night came on it had ceased to sing,
And had hidden its head beneath its wing.
It thought of the warm room left behind,
The shelter from cold and rain and wind ;
It could not sleep, when to sleep it strove-
Liberty needeth the help of Love.

The night owls shrieked as they wheeled along, Bent upon slaughter, and rapine, and wrong: There was devilish mirth in their wild halloo, And the linnet trembled when near they drew; 'Twas fearful to watch them madly rove, Drunken with Liberty, left of Love.

When morning broke, a grey old crow
Was pecking some carrion down below;
A poor little lamb, half-alive, half-dead,
And the crow at each peck turned up its head
With a cunning glance at the linnet above-
What a demon is Liberty left of Love !

Then an eagle hovered far up in the sky,
And the linnet trembled, but could not fly;
With a swoop to the earth the eagle fell,
And rose up anon with a savage yell.
The birds in the woodlands dared not move.
What a despot is Liberty left of Love !

By and bye there arrived, with chattering loud,
Chaffinch and sparrow and finch, in a cloud ;
Round and around in their fierce attack,
They plucked the feathers from breast and back;
And the poor little linnet all vainly strove,
Fighting with Liberty left of Love.

“ Alas !" it said, with a cry of pain,
“ Carry me back to my cage again;
There let me dwell in peaceful ease,
Piping whatever songs I please;
Here, if I stay, my death shall prove,
Liberty dieth left of Love."

TO THE REV. A. A. IN THE COUNTRY FROM

HIS FRIEND IN LONDON.

(AFTER HEINE.)

Thou little village curate,

Come quick, and do not wait ;
We'll sit and talk together

So sweetly tête-a-tête.

« ElőzőTovább »