Oldalképek
PDF
ePub

An' after every verse, you know

They played a little tune;
I didn't understand, au' so

I started in too soon.
I pitched it pritty middlin' high,

I fetched a lusty toue,
But oh, alas! I found that I

Was singing there alone!
They laughed a little, I am told;

But I had done my best ;
And not a wave of trouble rolled

A cross my peaceful breast.
And sister Brown-I could but look-

She sits right front of me;
She never was no singin' book,

An' never meant to be ;
But then she al’ays tried to do

The best she could, she said ;
She understood the time, right through,

An' kep' it, with her head ;
But when she tried this mornin', oh,

I had to laugh, or cough-
It kep’ her head a bobbin' so,

It e'en a'most came off!
An' Deacon Tubbs,—he all broke down,

As one might well suppose,
He took one look at sister Brown,

and meekly scratched his nose.
He looked liis hymn book through and through

And laid it on the seat,
And then a pensive sigh he drew,

And looked completely beat.
An' when they took another bout,

Ile didu't even rise,
But drawed his red bandanner out,

An' wiped his weepin' eyes.
I've been a sister, good an' true,

For five an' thirty year;
I've done what seemed my part to do,

An' prayed my duty clear;
But death will stop my voice, I know,

For he is on my track;
And some day, I to church will go,

And never more come back.
And when the folks get up to sing-

Whene'er that time shall be-
I do not want no PATENT thing
A squealin' over me !

Our Fireside Hriend

DEATH OF GAUDENTIS.-HARRIET ANNIE.

The following inscription was found in the Catacombs by Mr. Perret, upon the tomb of the Architect of the Coliseum.

.“ Thus tbou keepest thy promises (0) Vespasian! thc rewarding with death him, the crown of thy glory in Rome. Do rejoice, o Gaudentis! the cruel tyrant promised conch, but ihrist gave thee all, who prepared thee sucb mausion.”Professor ). De Launay's Lectures on the Calucumbs.

BEFORE Vespasian's regal throne

Skilfull Gaudentis stood;
“Build me," the laughty monarch cried,

"A theatre for blood.
I know thou’rt skilled in mason's work,

Thine is the power to frame
Rome's Coliseum vast and wide,

Au honor to thy name.
“Over seven acres spread thy work,

And by the gods of Rome,
Thou shalt hereafter by my side

Have thy resplendent home.
A citizen of Roman rights,

Silver and golden store,
These shall be thine ; let Christian blood

But stain the marble floor."

So rose the Amphitheatre,

Tower and arch and tier ;
There dawned a day when martyrs stood

Within that ring of fear.
But strong their quenchless trust in God,

And strong their human love,
Their eyes of faith, undimmed, were fixed

Or temples far above.
And thousands gazed, in brutal joy,

To watch the Christians die,
But one beside Vespasian leanerl,

With a strange light in his eye.
What thoughts welled up within his breast,

As on that group he gazed,
What gleams of holy light from beaven,

Upon his dark soul blazed!
Had he by password gained access,

To the dark catacomb,
And learned the hope of Christ's beloved,

Beyond the rack, the toinb?

The proud Vespasian o'er him bends,

“My priceless architect, To-day I will announce to all

Thy privilege elect,

A free made citizen of Rome."

Calmly Gaudentis rose,
And folding, o'er his breast, his arms,

Turned to the Saviour's foes ;
And in a strength not all bis own,

With Life and Death in view, The fearless architect exclaimed,

“I am a Christian too."

Only a few brief moments passed,

Aud brave Gaudentis lay
Within the amphitheatre,

A lifeless mass of clay.
Vespasian promised him the rights

of proud Imperial Rome; But Christ withi martyrs crowned liin Kind;

Beueath Heaveu's cloudless dome.

THE ENGINEER'S STORY.

No, children, my trips are over,

The Engineer needs rest; My hand is shaky; I'm feeling

A tugging pain i' my breast; But here, as the twilight gathers,

l'll tell you a tale of the road, That'll ring in my head forever,

Till it rests beneath the sod.

We were lumbering along in the twilight

The night was dropping her shado, And the - Gladiator labored

Climbing the top of the grade; The train was heavily laden,

So I let my engine rest, Climbing the grading slowly.

Till we reached the upland's crecto

I held my watch to the lamplight

Ten minutes behind the time ! Lost in the slackened motion

Of the up grade's heavy climb;
But I knew the miles of the prairie

That stretched a level track,
So I touched the guage of the boiler,

And pulled the lever back.

Over the rails a-gleaming,

Thirty an hour, or so,
The engine leaped like a demon,

Breathing a fiery glow;
But to me-ahold of the lever

It seemed a child alway,
Trustful and always ready

My lightest touch to obey.
I was proud, yon know, of my engine,

Holding it steady that night,
And my eye on the track before us,

Ablaze with the Drummond light.
We neared a well-known cabin,

Where a child of three or four,
As the up train passed, oft called me,

A playing around the door.
My hand was firm on the throttle

As we swept around the curve,
When something afar in the shadow,

Struck fire through every nerve.
I sounded the brakes, and crashing

The reverse lever down in dismay,
Groaning to Heaven-eighty paces

Alead was the child at its play!

One instant-one, awful and only,

The world flew round in my brain, And I smote my band bard on my forehead

To keep back the terrible pain; The train I thought flying forever,

With mad irresistible roll, While the cries of the dying, the night wind

Swept into my shuddering soul.

Then I stood on the front of the engine.

How I got there I never could tell, My feet planted down on the crossbar,

Where the cow-catcher slopes to the rail,

One hand firmly locked on the coupler,

And one held out in the night,
While my eye gauged the distance, and measured

The speed of our slackening flight.
My mind, thank the Lord ! it was steady;

I saw the curls of her hair,
And the face that, turning in wonder,

Was lit by the deadly glare.
I know little more-but I heard it

The groan of the anguished wheels,
And remember thinking-the engine

In agony trembles and reels,
One rod! To the day of my dying

I shall think the old engine reared back,
And as it recoiled, with a shudder

I swept my hand over the track;
Tlen darkuess fell over my eyelids,

But I beard the surge of the train,
And the poor old engine creaking,

As racked by a deadly pain.
They found us, they said, on the gravel,

My fingers enmeshed in her hair,
And she on my bosom a-climbing,

To nestle securely there.
We are not much given to crying-

We men that run on the road
But that night, they said, there were faces,

With tears ou them, listed to God.
For years in the eve and the morning

As I neared the cabin again,
My land on the lever pressed downward

And slackened the speed of the train.
When my engine had blown her a greeting,

She always would come to the door;
And her look with a fullness of heaven

Blesses me evermore.

THE NOBLE REVENGE.

The coffin was a plain one—a poor miserable pine cof fin. No Rowers on the top; no lining of white satin for the pale brow; no smooth ribbons about the coarse sbroud.

« ElőzőTovább »