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The wee herd laddie at his brose,

The tears felt trickling down his nose ! My first feeling was that of depression, as if some dread calamity had happened or was about to happen, never once imagining that all this interest was solely and altogether centred in myself. Quickly rallying, however, I passed the evening in my usual cheerful manner, although my father and mother spoke much less than usual, and, to my astonishment, never uttered a word unless in reply to some question of mine regarding my journey on the morrow, and never said, contrary to their usual custom, it is time to retire to rest.

“Alas! thoughtless Youth, the morrow will have pangs sufficient for itself; and—the last night-could a father or a mother's heart desire that their boy should be ever out of their sight?

“I went to my bed-chamber of my own accord, and slept soundly till softly aroused by the sound of footsteps stealthily proceeding across the room. I slightly raised my head, and beheld

my

mother on her knees in the attitude of prayer, and though no words escaped her lips, she was doubtless supplicating a blessing on her darling boy, from whom she was so soon to part, probably for ever. I for some time lay as if asleep, and often did she come and stroke the golden tresses from off my forehead and place her warm and feverish hand in mine, and say. “Who will care for my boy now?'

“We were to start at an early hour, and I knew that hour must be past : still she awoke me not! Oh! who can tell the feelings of a mother's heart? To awake me would be cruel. Let the fond mother gaze yet a little longer on her darling boy! “Comprehending her feelings, I arose, and made ready for

Ι my journey. The cart with my luggage had already started, and my

father was ready to accompany me a short way on the road. I turned to bid my mother farewell. Not a word she spoke—but oh! that last, long look, so sweetly solemn, yet so full of yearning love—that last, long, long embrace which held her to her boy, till gently parted from him for

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ever. Excuse these tears, my children, they are a tribute to a mother's love.

Slowly my father and I proceeded on our way. Our words were few, and neither seemed inclined to interrupt the reveries of the other.

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The dew still gemmed the shooting corn,
Dull, grey and misty, bleak the morn,
The lark had not begun to sing,
The linnet smoothed her dewy wing ;
Yet, curling smoke from homesteads rose,
The fox, now roused from his repose,
With timid hare, sped o'er the glen,
Avoiding haunts of murderous men;
Defiant, brave, without alarm,
Cock answered cock from many a farm,
While moorland birds no more forlorn,
Announced, while onwards quickly borne,
With whirring flight the break of morn.
The bleating sheep on Sidlaw Hills,
The murmuring rush of mountain rills,
Soft mingled with the early lay
Of shepherd laddie, as he lay
Wrapped in his ragged tartan plaid,
The fragrant heather for his bed,
Shared by his faithful dog alway,
All welcomed glad the opening day;
Which now, soft blushing in the east,
Seemed to arise at their behest,
All glorious as the smiling sun
Proclaimed with joy the day begun,
While lark and linnet cheerily sang,
With bursting song the wild-woods rang;
The maiden blithe by sunny bield,
The ploughman by his team afield,
The neighing horse, the lowing kine,
All felt the influence divine :
While hind to early market sent,
His longwhip cracked in merriment;
And lasses trudging o'er the road,
Now lighter felt their heavy load,
And smirked and smiled as they passed by,
As if we would their butter buy.

Surrounded grim by Sidlaw hills,
All watered fresh by mountain rills,

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With skirting copsewood here and there,
The hill tops leaving bleak and bare,
On which the shepherd feeds his flock,
Sometimes, nay oft, a scanty stock ;
A little hamlet with its school,
Its streamlet, bridge, and minnow pool,
And hostelry well stored and found,
With smiling homesteads all around,
Removed afar from haunts of men,
Lonely, yet sweet, thou bonnie glen !
'Tween Dryburns bleak, Kilmundie warm,
There's many a snug and smiling farm,
Many a cozy home the sun shines on
From Airniefoul to Middleton.
May plenty, virtue, peace and love,
With choicest blessings from above,
Be yours in perpetuity,

Who dwell in Glen of Ogilvy. “At last we reached the top of the Sidlaw Hills. Behind me lay the glen where I was born; before me the untrodden, unknown world, where I felt I was doomed to die.

“We must now part, my son,' my father tremulously said, and I commend you to God, who is able and willing to protect you in all your wanderings. Trust ye in Him, and you shall never have cause to be ashamed. Take His Holy Word as your comforter and guide, and if we never meet again in this world, we shall meet at last in our heavenly Father's house above.'

“Presenting me with a Bible, he fervently embraced me, turning abruptly his steps homeward.

“Not anticipating either the gift or the solemn benediction by which it had been accompanied, I stood for some minutes gazing on the retreating form of my venerable parent, when, just before turning the brow of the hill, he turned round and waved his last adieu. I would have run after him and embraced him, and said many things to him which I now remembered, but I was spell-bound to the spot—all my regrets were vain. I looked in the direction he had gone, but he had disappeared !

“Then new thoughts and feelings rushed through my mind

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as I experienced the bitter pangs of remorse at losing the last opportunity I might ever have of unburthening my heart to a beloved parent. And then came the sad and withering thought which never ceased to influence me in after-life-to be within a short distance of those we love, and not to be able to take advantage of our position; to live in the same world, and see the same sun and sky, and breathe the same atmosphere, and

yet be separated from our friends by continents and by seas, is the greatest trial and the most grievous burden that mortals can be called upon to bear. We lose our dearest by death, but the

very fact that their doom is irrevocable, and that we cannot by any possibility alter the decree, makes us resigned to bereavements, however severe, But the thought that distance only separates us from our friends, and yet w them no more, is more intensely agonising than losing them by death itself.

“Such, my children, were my first impressions of LIFE.”

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CHAPTER XXI.

DEATH.

“ Invidious Grave ! how dost thou rend in sunder
Whom love has knit, and sympathy made one."

Blair.

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“HAVE you ever seen a dead poet ?”—excitedly exclaimed an esteemed friend, as I met him sometime ago on a winter afternoon in one of the busiest thoroughfares in Dundee. Startled by the weird-like question, I kindly requested an explanation of its meaning. My friend then with the greatest tenderness of feeling informed me that James Gow, the weaver-poet, had died a pauper's death the day before, in a common lodging-house in the Overgate; requesting my presence at the sametime at his funeral, the expenses of which, Lord Kinnaird, with his usual generosity, had just telegraphed that he would most willingly liquidate.

On my way homewards, I felt rather at sea in regard to the personnelle of the weaver-poet ; when all at once I recollected, that some five and twenty years before, I had read and re-read with the greatest delight, some beautiful pieces of sterling poetry, in Tait's Magazine, and Chambers' Journal, by James Gow, author of “Lays of the Loom.” These fugitive pieces were entitled —“Alic the Pauper”—“The Orphan Laddie”“ Helen the Outcast"_“The Snow-Drop”- “The Orphan's Grave," &c., suggestive now of sad and touching memories. These, as well as his "Lays of the Loom,” were all composed, like Tannahill, as he worked at his loom, then familiarly termed—“the four posts of misery !”

On recovering from a severe attack of typhus fever, some

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