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CLASS-BOOK

OF

ENGLISH POETRY,

Junior Division.

LITTLE JIM.

The cottage was a thatched one,

The outside old and mean; Yet everything within that cot

Was wondrous neat and clean. The night was dark and stormy,

The wind was howling wild; A patient mother knelt beside

The deathbed of her child.

A little worn-out creature-

His once bright eyes grown dim; He was a collier's only child

They called him little Jim. And oh! to see the briny tears

Fast hurrying down her cheek,
As she offered up a prayer in thought-

She was afraid to speak,
Lest she might waken one she loved

Far better than her life;
For there was all a mother's love

In that poor collier's wife.

Just moisten poor Jim's lips again,

And, mother, don't you cry.”
With gentle, trembling haste she held

The tea-cup to his lips;
He smiled, to thank her, as he took

Three little tiny sips. Tell father, when he comes from work,

I said good-night to him;
And, mother, now I'll go to sleep:"-

Alas! poor little Jim!
She saw that he was dying-

The child she loved so dear,
Had uttered the last words that she

Might ever hope to hear.
The cottage door was opened,

The collier's step was heard ; The mother and the father met,

Yet neither spoke a word !

He knew that all was over

He knew his child was dead; He took the candle in his hand,

And walked towards the bed,

With hands uplifted, see, she kneels

Beside the suff'rer's bed; And prays that He will spare her boy,

And take herself instead!

She gets her answer from the child;

Soft fell these words from him :“Mother, the angels do so smile,

And beckon little Jim !

His quivering lips gave token

Of grief he'd fain conceal;
And see! his wife has joined him-

The stricken couple kneel !
With hearts bowed down with sadness,

They humbly ask of Him,
In heaven once more to meet again
Their own poor little Jim.

ANON.

I have no pain, dear mother, now,

But oh! I am so dry;

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