Oldalképek
PDF
ePub

Hers the deepest bliss to treasure
Memories of that cry of pleasure ;
Hers to hoard, a lifetime after,
Echoes of that infant laughter.
'T is a mother's large affection

Hears with a mysterious sense,
Breathings that evade detection,
Whisper faint, and fine inflection,

Thrill in her with power intense. Childhood's honeyed words untaught Hiveth she in loving thought, Tones that never thence depart; For she listens — with her heart.

LAMAN BLANCHARD.

THE MOTHER'S STRATAGEM.

AN INFANT PLAYING NEAR A PRECIPICE,

While on the cliff with calm delight she kneels,

And the blue vales a thousand joys recall, See, to the last, last verge her infant steals !

O, fly — yet stir not, speak not, lest it fall. Far better taught, she lays her bosom bare, And the fond boy springs back to nestle there.

LEONIDAS of Alexandria (Greek). Translation

of SAMUEL ROGERS.

THE PET LAMB. The dew was falling fast, the stars began to blink; I heard a voice ; it said, “Drink, pretty creature,

drink ! And, looking o'er the hedge, before me I espied A snow-white mountain-lamb with a maiden at

its side.

Nor sheep nor kine were near; the lamb was

all alone, And by a slender cord was tethered to a stone ; With one knee on the grass did the little

maiden kneel, While to that mountain-lamb she gave its

evening meal. The lamb, while from her hand he thus his

supper took, Seemed to feast with head and ears ; and his

tail with pleasure shook. “Drink, pretty creature, drink !” she said, in

such a tone That I almost received her heart into my own. 'T was little Barbara Lewthwaite, a child of

beauty rare ! I watched them with delight : they were

And proud the lifting of thy stately head,
And the firm bearing of thy conscious tread.

Different from both! yet each succeeding claim

I, that all other love had been forswearing,
Forthwith admitted, equal and the same ;

Nor injured either by this love's comparing,
Nor stole a fraction for the newer call, –
But in the mother's heart found room for all !

CAROLINE E. NORTON.

THE MOTHER'S HOPE.

is there, when the winds are singing

In the happy summer time,
When the raptured air is ringing
With Earth's music heavenward springing,

Forest chirp, and village chime,
Is there, of the sounds that float
Unsighingly, a single note
Half so sweet, and clear, and wild,
As the laughter of a child ?

Listen ! and be now delighted :

Morn hath touched her golden strings ;
Earth and Sky their vows have plighted ;
Life and Light are reunited

Amid countless carollings ;
Yet, delicious as they are,
There's a sound that's sweeter far,
One that makes the heart rejoice

the human voice !

More than all,

Organ finer, deeper, clearer,

Though it be a stranger's tone,
Than the winds or waters dearer,
More enchanting to the hearer,

For it answereth to his own.
But, of all its witching words,
Those are sweetest, bubbling wild
Through the laughter of a child.

Harmonies from time-touched towers,

Haunted strains from rivulets,
Hum of bees among the flowers,
Rustling leaves, and silver showers, -

These, erelong, the ear forgets ;
But in mine there is a sound
Ringing on the whole year round,
Heart-deep langhter that I heard
Ere my child could speak a word.

lovely pair.

Ah! ’t was heard by ear far purer,

Fondlier formed to catch the strain, -
Ear of one whose love is surer,
Hers, the mother, the endurer

Of the deepest share of pain ;

a

she stay.

Now with her empty can the maiden turned away;

SEVEN TIMES ONE.
But ere ten yards were gone, her footsteps did

THERE 's no dew left on the daisies and clover,

There's no rain left in heaven.
Right towards the lamb she looked ; and from a

I've said my

seven times

over and over, shady place

Seven times one are seven.
I unobserved could see the workings of her face.
If nature to her tongue could measured numbers

I am old, - so old I can write a letter;
bring,
Thus, thought I, to her lamb that little maid The lambs play always, – they know no better :

My birthday lessons are done.
might sing:

They are only one times one.
6 What ails thee, young one ? — what ? Why
pull so at thy cord ?

O Moon! in the night I have seen you sailing
Is it not well with thee ? - well both for bed and And shining so round and low.
board ?

You were bright — ah, bright — but your light
Thy plot of grass is soft, and green as grass can be ;

is failing ;
Rest, little young one, rest; what is 't that You are nothing now but a bow.
aileth thee?

You Moon ! have you done something wrong in
* Thou know'st that twice a day I have brought heaven,
thee in this can

That God has hidden your face?
Fresh water from the brook, as clear as ever ran; I hope, if you have, you will soon be forgiven,
And twice in the day, when the ground is wet And shine again in your place.

with dew,
I bring thee draughts of milk, – warm milk it O velvet Bee ! you 're a dusty fellow,
is, and new.

You ’ve powdered your legs with gold.

O brave marsh Mary-buds, rich and yellow, “Thy limbs will shortly be twice as stout as

Give me your money to hold !
they are now ;
Then I'll yoke thee to my cart like a pony in O Columbine ! open your folded wrapper,
the plough.

Where two twin turtle-doves dwell ! My playmate thou shalt be; and when the wind o Cuckoo-pint! toll me the purple clapper is cold,

That hangs in
your

bell !
Our hearth shall be thy bed, our house shall be
thy fold.

And show me your nest, with the young ones in

it,
“ Here thou need'st not dread the raven in the I will not steal them away :
sky;

I am old ! you may trust me, linnet, linnet !
Night and day thou art safe, our cottage is I am seven times one to-day.
hard by.

JEAN INGELOW
Why bleat so after me? Why pull so at thy chain?
Sleep, and at break of day I will come to thee
again !”

WE ARE SEVEN.

clear green

[merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors]
[blocks in formation]

“You run about, my little maid ;

Your limbs they are alive ; If two are in the churchyard laid,

Then ye are only five."

“Their graves are green, they may be seen,”

The little maid replied : "Twelve steps or more from my mother's door,

And they are side by side.

Thy sidelong pillowed meekness ;

Thy thanks to all that aid ; Thy heart, in pain and weakness, Of fancied faults afraid ;

The little trembling hand

That wipes thy quiet tears, These, these are things that may demand

Dread memories for years.
Sorrows I've had, severe ones,

I will not think of now;
And calmly, midst my dear ones,
Have wasted with dry brow;

But when thy fingers press

And pat my stooping head, I cannot bear the gentleness,

The tears are in their bed.

[ocr errors]

“My stockings there I often knit;

My kerchief there I hem ; And there upon the ground I sit,

And sing a song to them.

" And often after sunset, sir,

When it is light and fair, I take my little porringer,

And eat my supper there.

“ The first that died was Sister Jane;

In bed she moaning lay,
Till God released her of her pain ;

And then she went away.

“So in the churchyard she was laid ;

And, when the grass was dry, Together round her grave we played,

My brother John and I.

Ah, first-born of thy mother,

When life and hope were new;
Kind playmate of thy brother,
Thy sister, father too;

My light, where'er I go ;

My bird, when prison-bound ; My hand-in-hand companion — No,

My prayers shall hold thee round. To say, “He has departed”.

“His voice” -“his face To feel impatient-hearted, Yet feel we must bear on,

Ah, I could not endure

To whisper of such woe, Unless I felt this sleep insure

That it will not be so.

[ocr errors]

is gone,

“And when the ground was white with snow,

And I could run and slide,
My brother John was forced to go,

And he lies by her side.”

[blocks in formation]

But, evermore the halo

of angel-light increased, Like the mystery of moonlight

That folds some fairy feast.
Snow-white, snow-soft, snow-silently

Our darling bud up-curled,
And dropt i' the grave — God's lap -- our wet

White Rose of all the world.

For they hold the small shape of feet
That no more their mother's eyes meet,

That, by God's good will,

Years since, grew still,
And ceased from their totter so sweet.
And 0, since that baby slept,
So hushed, how the mother has kept,

With a tearful pleasure,

That little dear treasure,
And o'er them thought and wept !
For they mind her forevermore
Of a patter along the floor;

And blue eyes she sees

Look up from her knees
With the look that in life they wore.
As they lie before her there,
There babbles from chair to chair

A little sweet face

That's a gleam in the place, With its little gold curls of hair. Then O wonder not that her heart From all else would rather part

Than those tiny blue shoes

That no little feet use, And whose sight makes such fond tears start !

[blocks in formation]

WILLIAM C. BENNETT.

OUR WEE WHITE ROSE.

PICTURES OF MEMORY.

All in our marriage garden

Grew, smiling up to God, A bonnier flower than ever

Suckt the green warmth of the sod; O beautiful unfathomably

Its little life unfurled ; And crown of all things was our wee

White Rose of all the world.

AMONG the beautiful pictures

That hang on Memory's wall Is one of a dim old forest,

That seemeth best of all ; Not for its gnarled oaks ollen,

Dark with the mistletoe; Not for the violets golden

That sprinkle the vale below;

Not for the milk-white lilies

That lean from the fragrant ledge, Coquetting all day with the sunbeams,

And stealing their golden edge ; Not for the vines on the upland,

Where the bright red berries rest, Nor the pinks, nor the pale sweet cowslip,

It seemeth to me the best.

This name,

whoever chance to call Perhaps your smile may win. Nay, do not smile ! mine eyelids fall Over mine eyes, and feel withal

The sudden tears within.

Is there a leaf that greenly grows

Where summer meadows bloom, But gathereth the winter snows, And changeth to the hue of those,

If lasting till they come ?

Is there a word, or jest, or game,

But time encrusteth round With sad associate thoughts the same ? And so to me my very name

Assumes a mournful sound.

I once had a little brother,

With eyes that were dark and deep; In the lap of that old dim forest

He lieth in peace asleep : Light as the down of the thistle,

Free as the winds that blow,
We roved there the beautiful summers,

The summers of long ago ;
But his feet on the hills grew weary,

And, one of the autumn eves,
I made for my little brother

A bed of the yellow leaves. Sweetly his pale arms folded

My neck in a meek embrace, As the light of immortal beauty

Silently covered his face ; And when the arrows of sunset

Lodged in the tree-tops bright, He fell, in his saint-like beauty,

Asleep by the gates of light. Therefore, of all the pictures

That hang on Memory's wall, The one of the dim old forest

Seemeth the best of all.

My brother gave that name to me

When we were children twain, When names acquired baptismally Were hard to utter, as to see

That life had any pain.

No shade was on us then, save one

Of chestnuts from the hill, And through the word our laugh did run As part thereof. The mirth being done,

He calls me by it still.

Nay, do not smile ! I hear in it

What none of you can hear, The talk upon the willow seat, The bird and wind that did repeat

Around, our human cheer.

ALICE CARY.

[blocks in formation]
« ElőzőTovább »