Water, Is Taught By Thirst

135

Water, is taught by thirst.
Land—by the Oceans passed.
Transport—by throe—
Peace—by its battles told—
Love, by Memorial Mold—
Birds, by the Snow.

by Emily Dickinson.

The Zeroes—taught Us—phosphorous

689

The Zeroes—taught us—Phosphorous—
We learned to like the Fire
By playing Glaciers—when a Boy—
And Tinder—guessed—by power
Of Opposite—to balance Odd—
If White—a Red—must be!
Paralysis—our Primer—dumb—
Unto Vitality!

by Emily Dickinson.

On A Certain Pedagogue

A hungry eagle, wishing to be fed,
Let fall a tortoise on a poet's head,
And Athens mourned her noblest singer dead.
Oh had the bird our bald tormentor known,
And taken P____ 's numskull for a stone,
By all the names that frighten gods and men,
'Twould be the tortoise that would suffer then.

by Richard Crawley.

I'd like to be a teacher, and have a clever brain,
Calling out, 'Attention, please!' and 'Must I speak in vain?'
I'd be quite strict with boys and girls whose minds I had to train,
And all the books and maps and thngs I'd carefully explain;
I'd make then learn the dates of kings, and all the capes of Spain;
But I wouldn't be a teacher if ...
I couldn't use the cane.
Would you?

by Clarence Michael James Stanislaus Dennis.

You Taught Me Waiting With Myself

740

You taught me Waiting with Myself—
Appointment strictly kept—
You taught me fortitude of Fate—
This—also—I have learnt—

An Altitude of Death, that could
No bitterer debar
Than Life—had done—before it—
Yet—there is a Science more—

The Heaven you know—to understand
That you be not ashamed
Of Me—in Christ's bright Audience
Upon the further Hand—

by Emily Dickinson.

My Master Taught Me A Lesson

My Master taught me a lesson:
'Any moment you are negligent in remembrance of God is a moment spent in denial of God.'

These words opened my eyes to reality,
And I fixed my attention on the Lord.

I then placed my soul in his protection-
Such was the love I cultivated in my heart.

Having thus bequeathed my soul to him, I died before death - to live in him.
Only then did I attain the goal of life, O Bahu!

by Sultan Bahu.

I Have Found My Guru

I have found a guru in Raidas, he has

given me the pill of knowledge.

I lost the honor of the royal family, I

went astray with the sadhus.

I constantly rise up, go to God’s

temple, and dance, snapping my

fingers.

I don’t follow the norms as an oldest

daughter-in-law, I have thrown

away the veil.

I have taken refuge with the great

guru, and snapped my fingers at

the consequences.

by Mirabai.

Cheerfulness Taught By Reason

I THINK we are too ready with complaint
In this fair world of God's. Had we no hope
Indeed beyond the zenith and the slope
Of yon gray blank of sky, we might grow faint
To muse upon eternity's constraint
Round our aspirant souls; but since the scope
Must widen early, is it well to droop,
For a few days consumed in loss and taint ?
O pusillanimous Heart, be comforted
And, like a cheerful traveller, take the road
Singing beside the hedge. What if the bread
Be bitter in thine inn, and thou unshod
To meet the flints ? At least it may be said
' Because the way is short, I thank thee, God. '

by Elizabeth Barrett Browning.

Patience Taught By Nature

'O DREARY life,' we cry, ' O dreary life ! '
And still the generations of the birds
Sing through our sighing, and the flocks and herds
Serenely live while we are keeping strife
With Heaven's true purpose in us, as a knife
Against which we may struggle ! Ocean girds
Unslackened the dry land, savannah-swards
Unweary sweep, hills watch unworn, and rife
Meek leaves drop year]y from the forest-trees
To show, above, the unwasted stars that pass
In their old glory: O thou God of old,
Grant me some smaller grace than comes to these !--
But so much patience as a blade of grass
Grows by, contented through the heat and cold.

by Elizabeth Barrett Browning.

Stand For Teacher

Stand for the teacher and honor his rank...
...for a teacher is almost as a prophet
Do you know of someone nobler than...
...he who nurtures minds and hearts
You encompass all, the Best Teacher...
...You taught with the pen the earliest people
You brought this mind forth from darkness...
...and guided it to an enlightened, radiant path
For if the teacher is not just, then lost...
...is the spirit of justice in youth for certain
If the teacher's insight lapses for a moment...
...then those under his tutelage will lack vision
If guidance and counsel are based on whim...
...and on arrogance, then call that misguidance.

by Ahmad Shawqi.

Why Mira Can'T Come Back To Her Old House

The colors of the Dark One have penetrated Mira's body; all the other colors washed out.
Making love with the Dark One and eating little, those are my pearls and my carnelians.
Meditation beads and the forehead streak, those are my scarves and my rings.
That's enough feminine wiles for me. My teacher taught me this.
Approve me or disapprove me: I praise the Mountain Energy night and day.
I take the path that ecstatic human beings have taken for centuries.
I don't steal money, I don't hit anyone. What will you charge me with?
I have felt the swaying of the elephant's shoulders;
and now you want me to climb on a jackass?
Try to be serious

[Translated by Robert Bly]

by Mirabai.

I slept when Venus enter'd: to my bed
A Cupid in her beauteous hand she led,
A bashful seeming boy, and thus she said:
'Shepherd, receive my little one! I bring
An untaught love, whom thou must teach to sing.'
She said, and left him. I, suspecting nought,
Many a sweet strain my subtle pupil taught,
How reed to reed Pan first with osier bound,
How Pallas form'd the pipe of softest sound,
How Hermes gave the lute, and how the quire
Of Phoebus owe to Phoebus' self the lyre.
Such were my themes; my themes nought heeded he
But ditties sang of amorous sort to me.
The pangs that mortals and immortals prove
From Venus' influence and the darts of love.
Thus was the teacher by the pupil taught;
His lessons I retain'd, he mine forgot.

by William Cowper.

Fixed Is The Doom

FIXED is the doom; and to the last of years
Teacher and taught, friend, lover, parent, child,
Each walks, though near, yet separate; each beholds
His dear ones shine beyond him like the stars.
We also, love, forever dwell apart;
With cries approach, with cries behold the gulph,
The Unvaulted; as two great eagles that do wheel in air
Above a mountain, and with screams confer,
Far heard athwart the cedars.
Yet the years
Shall bring us ever nearer; day by day
Endearing, week by week, till death at last
Dissolve that long divorce. By faith we love,
Not knowledge; and by faith, though far removed,
Dwell as in perfect nearness, heart to heart.
We but excuse
Those things we merely are; and to our souls
A brave deception cherish.
So from unhappy war a man returns
Unfearing, or the seaman from the deep;
So from cool night and woodlands to a feast
May someone enter, and still breathe of dews,
And in her eyes still wear the dusky night.

by Robert Louis Stevenson.

(Non-commissioned Officers of the Line)


At times when under cover I 'ave said,
To keep my spirits up an' raise a laugh,
'Earin 'im pass so busy over-'ead--
Old Nickel-Neck, 'oo is n't on the Staff --
"There's one above is greater than us all"

Before 'im I 'ave seen my Colonel fall,
An 'watched 'im write my Captain's epitaph,
So that a long way off it could be read--
He 'as the knack o' makin' men feel small--
Old Whistle Tip, 'oo is n't on the Staff.

There is no sense in fleein'' (I 'ave fled),
Better go on an' do the belly-crawl,
An' 'ope' 'e '1l it some other man instead
Of you 'e seems to 'unt so speshual--
Fitzy van Spitz, 'oo is n't on the Staff.

An' thus in mem'ry's cinematograph,
Now that the show is over, I recall
The peevish voice an' 'oary mushroom 'ead
Of 'im we owned was greater than us all,
'Oo give instruction to the quick an' the dead--
The Shudderin'' Beggar--not upon the Staff!

by Rudyard Kipling.

Your Riches—taught Me—poverty

299

Your Riches—taught me—Poverty.
Myself—a Millionaire
In little Wealths, as Girls could boast
Till broad as Buenos Ayre—

You drifted your Dominions—
A Different Peru—
And I esteemed All Poverty
For Life's Estate with you—

Of Mines, I little know—myself—
But just the names, of Gems—
The Colors of the Commonest—
And scarce of Diadems—

So much, that did I meet the Queen—
Her Glory I should know—
But this, must be a different Wealth—
To miss it—beggars so—

I'm sure 'tis India—all Day—
To those who look on You—
Without a stint—without a blame,
Might I—but be the Jew—

I'm sure it is Golconda—
Beyond my power to deem—
To have a smile for Mine—each Day,
How better, than a Gem!

At least, it solaces to know
That there exists—a Gold—
Altho' I prove it, just in time
Its distance—to behold—

Its far—far Treasure to surmise—
And estimate the Pearl—
That slipped my simple fingers through—
While just a Girl at School.

by Emily Dickinson.

Since last he looked on earth an age

Of rounded years is gone ;
But working still, with joy and 'peace for wage,

His soul goes marching on.

A hundred years have passed away, and yet,

Altho' the time was long,
The children that he taught cannot forget

The singer or his song.

He lit the lamps along the darkened track,

That men their way might win ;
He pushed the curtains that hid heaven back

And let the sunlight in.

He brushed aside the thorns of scorn and malice,

And kept his onward way
The frown of power or the pride of palace

Ne'er darked his shining day.

He planted fig trees in the desert places :

He pruned the barren parts :
He shed a light upon the people's faces,

And warmed their hopeless hearts.

The chains of cold neglect and sloth he sundered :

He beat their walls amain ;
And thro' the land the splendid anthem thundered

That Christ was born again.

And then the world awoke, and its awaking

Shook mountain top and glen ;
The teacher saw the hands of angels shaking

The outstretched hands of men.

And ever since the tide of life is flowing

The wakened hosts to save ;
And ever since the flowers of love are growing

On Wesley's honored grave.

by Robert Kirkland Kernighan.

A Poet's Father

Welcker, I'm told, can boast a father great
And honored in the service of the State.
Public Instruction all his mind employs
He guides its methods and its wage enjoys.
Prime Pedagogue, imperious and grand,
He waves his ferule o'er a studious land
Where humming youth, intent upon the page,
Thirsting for knowledge with a noble rage,
Drink dry the whole Pierian spring and ask
To slake their fervor at his private flask.
Arrested by the terror of his frown,
The vaulting spit-ball drops untimely down;
The fly impaled on the tormenting pin
Stills in his awful glance its dizzy din;
Beneath that stern regard the chewing-gum
Which writhed and squeaked between the teeth is dumb;
Obedient to his will the dunce-cap flies
To perch upon the brows of the unwise;
The supple switch forsakes the parent wood
To settle where 'twill do the greatest good,
Puissant still, as when of old it strove
With Solomon for spitting on the stove
Learned Professor, variously great,
Guide, guardian, instructor of the State
Quick to discern and zealous to correct
The faults which mar the public intellect
From where of Siskiyou the northern bound
Is frozen eternal to the sunless ground
To where in San Diego's torrid clime
The swarthy Greaser swelters in his grime
Beneath your stupid nose can you not see
The dunce whom once you dandled on your knee?
O mighty master of a thousand schools,
Stop teaching wisdom, or stop breeding fools.

by Ambrose Bierce.

From An Essay On Man

Heav'n from all creatures hides the book of fate,
All but the page prescrib'd, their present state:
From brutes what men, from men what spirits know:
Or who could suffer being here below?
The lamb thy riot dooms to bleed today,
Had he thy reason, would he skip and play?
Pleas'd to the last, he crops the flow'ry food,
And licks the hand just rais'd to shed his blood.
Oh blindness to the future! kindly giv'n,
That each may fill the circle mark'd by Heav'n:
Who sees with equal eye, as God of all,
A hero perish, or a sparrow fall,
Atoms or systems into ruin hurl'd,
And now a bubble burst, and now a world.

Hope humbly then; with trembling pinions soar;
Wait the great teacher Death; and God adore.
What future bliss, he gives not thee to know,
But gives that hope to be thy blessing now.
Hope springs eternal in the human breast:
Man never is, but always to be blest:
The soul, uneasy and confin'd from home,
Rests and expatiates in a life to come.

Lo! the poor Indian, whose untutor'd mind
Sees God in clouds, or hears him in the wind;
His soul, proud science never taught to stray
Far as the solar walk, or milky way;
Yet simple nature to his hope has giv'n,
Behind the cloud topp'd hill, an humbler heav'n;
Some safer world in depth of woods embrac'd,
Some happier island in the wat'ry waste,
Where slaves once more their native land behold,
No fiends torment, no Christians thirst for gold.
To be, contents his natural desire,
He asks no angel's wing, no seraph's fire;
But thinks, admitted to that equal sky.

by Alexander Pope.

All On An April Morning

The teacher was wise and learned, I wis,
All nonsense she held in scorning,
But you never can tell what the primmest miss
Will do of a bright spring morning.

What this one did was to spread a snare
For feet of a youth unheeding,
As March, with a meek and lamb-like air,
To its very last hour was speeding.

Oh, he was the dullard of his class,
For how can a youth get learning
With his eyes aye fixed on a pretty lass
And his heart aye filled with yearning?

'Who finds 'mong the rushes which fringe a pool,'
She told him, 'the first wind blossom,
May wish what he will'-poor April fool,
With but one wish in his bosom.

Her gray eyes danced-on a wild-goose chase
He'd sally forth on the morrow,
And, later, she'd laugh in his sombre face,
And jest at his words of sorrow.

But penitence and a troubled mind
Were fruits of the night's reflection;
After all, he was simple, and strong, and kind-
'Twas wrong to flout his affection.

They met on the hill as she walked to school;
He said, unheeding her blushes,
'Here's the early flower your April fool
Found growing among the rushes.

'Take it or leave it as you will'-
His voice ringing out so clearly
Awoke in her heart a happy thrill-
'You know that I love you dearly.'

Day-dreams indulged as she taught the school
Held lovers kneeling and suing;
'Take it or leave it'-her April fool
Was masterful in his wooing.

He gave her the flower-she gave him a kiss-
His suit she had long been scorning;
But you never can tell what the primmest miss
Will do of a bright spring morning.

by Jean Blewett.

1
That childish thoughts such joys inspire,
Doth make my wonder, and His glory higher,
His bounty, and my wealth .more great
It chews His Kingdom, and His work complete.
In which there is not anything,
Not meet to be the joy of Cherubim.

2
He in our childhood with us walks,
And with our thoughts mysteriously He talks;
He often visiteth our minds,
But cold acceptance in us ever finds:
We send Him often grieved away,
Who else would show us all His Kingdom's joy.

3
O Lord, I wonder at Thy Love,
Which did my infancy so early move:
But more at that which did forbear
And move so long, though slighted many a year:
But most of all, at last that Thou
Thyself shouldst me convert, I scarce know how.

4
Thy gracious motions oft in vain
Assaulted me: my heart did hard remain
Longtime! I sent my God away
Grieved much, that He could not give me His joy.
I careless was, nor did regard
The End for which He all those thoughts prepared.

5
But now, with new and open eyes,
I see beneath, as if above the skies,
And as I backward look again
See all His thoughts and mine most clear arid plain.
He did approach, He me did woo;
I wonder that my God this thing would do,

6
From nothing taken first ,I was;
What wondrous things His glory brought to pass!
Now in the World I Him behold,
And me, enveloped in precious gold;
In deep abysses of delights,
In present hidden glorious benefits.

7
These thoughts His goodness long before
Prepared as precious and celestial store
With curious art in me inlaid,
That childhood might itself alone be said
My Tutor, Teacher, Guide to be,
Instructed then even by the Deitie.

by Thomas Traherne.

Old Town Types No. 29 - Miss Trapp, The Music Teacher

'One-and-two-and-three-and-four
You're playing it by ear, boy! Eyes upon the score!'
Miss Trapp, the music teacher, very prim and staid,
English and respectable, the town's old maid,
Sitting in her 'front room,' elderly and stern,
While a grubby urchin struggles with the notes he'll never learn.
'One-and-two-and-one-and-two
You're playing it at random! This will nevah, nevah do!'

No one knew her history or why she settled down
To 'Singing and Pianoforte' in our old town;
With her soft voice and grey dress, the folk called her 'The Dove;'
And the story somehow got about that she'd been 'crossed in love.'
And so, her fancied tragedy clothed her in vague romance
'So well-connected, too, my dear. You'd see that that a glance'
With her 'One-and-two-and - Oh, you stupid child!'
And the rap upon the knuckles was both lady-like and mild.

She sang at local concerts in a cultured voice and thin,
And the back seats applauded her with many a covert grin:
'Her voice is gettin' rusty; but the ole girl does her best.'
But the front seats said, 'Beautiful! How training stands the test!'
Yet all combined, in kindliness with varied tact displayed,
To make the path no thornier for our old maid,
Whose spinsterhood was quite an institution in the town,
With her 'One-and-two-and ...' And then she let us down.

For years she'd dwelt among us - our one 'lady,' prim and pure.
In her neat dove-grey dress, and manner most demure,
A regular museum piece, who knew just what was 'done.'
And then an English 'toff' came up to say to Connor's run.
Rich, it was said, and elderly; and, to the town's dismay,
He took and married our old-maid and hastened her away,
With her 'One-and-two-and ...' Of culture now bereft,
The town's 'tone' departed when our music teacher left.

by Clarence Michael James Stanislaus Dennis.

That Childish Thoughts Such Joys Inspire

1

That childish thoughts such joys inspire,
Doth make my wonder, and His glory higher,
His bounty, and my wealth .more great
It chews His Kingdom, and His work complete.
In which there is not anything,
Not meet to be the joy of Cherubim.


2

He in our childhood with us walks,
And with our thoughts mysteriously He talks;
He often visiteth our minds,
But cold acceptance in us ever finds:
We send Him often grieved away,
Who else would show us all His Kingdom's joy.


3

O Lord, I wonder at Thy Love,
Which did my infancy so early move:
But more at that which did forbear
And move so long, though slighted many a year:
But most of all, at last that Thou
Thyself shouldst me convert, I scarce know how.


4

Thy gracious motions oft in vain
Assaulted me: my heart did hard remain
Longtime! I sent my God away
Grieved much, that He could not give me His joy.
I careless was, nor did regard
The End for which He all those thoughts prepared.


5

But now, with new and open eyes,
I see beneath, as if above the skies,
And as I backward look again
See all His thoughts and mine most clear arid plain.
He did approach, He me did woo;
I wonder that my God this thing would do,


6

From nothing taken first ,I was;
What wondrous things His glory brought to pass!
Now in the World I Him behold,
And me, enveloped in precious gold;
In deep abysses of delights,
In present hidden glorious benefits.


7

These thoughts His goodness long before
Prepared as precious and celestial store
With curious art in me inlaid,
That childhood might itself alone be said
My Tutor, Teacher, Guide to be,
Instructed then even by the Deitie.

by Thomas Traherne.

Ch 01 Manner Of Kings Story 27

A man had attained great excellence in the art of wrestling, who knew three hundred and sixty exquisite tricks and daily exhibited something new. He had a particular affection for the beauty of one of his pupils whom he taught three hundred and fifty-nine tricks, refraining to impart to him only one. At last the youth had attained such power and skill that no one was able to contend with him and he went so far as to say to the sultan: "I allow superiority to my teacher on account of his age and from gratitude for his instruction but my strength is not less than his and my skill equal." The king, who was not pleased with this want of good manners, ordered them to wrestle with each other and a spacious locality having been fixed upon, the pillars of state and courtiers of his majesty made their appearance. The youth made an onslaught like a mad elephant with an impulse which might have uprooted a mountain of brass from its place but the master, who knew that he was in strength superior to himself, attacked him with the rare trick he had reserved to himself and which the youth was unable to elude; whereon the master, lifting him up with his hands from the ground, raised him above his head and then threw him down. Shouts were raised by the spectators and the king ordered a robe of honour with other presents to be given to the teacher but reproached and blamed the youth for having attempted to cope with his instructor and succumbed. He replied: "My lord, he has not vanquished me by his strength but there was a slender part in the art of wrestling which he had withheld from me and had today thereby got the upper hand of me." The master said: "I had reserved it for such an occasion because wise men have said: “Do not give so much strength to thy friend that, if he becomes thy foe, he may injure thee.” Hast thou not heard what the man said who suffered molestation from one whom he had educated?

Either fidelity itself does not exist in this world
Or nobody practices it in our time.
No one had learnt archery from me
Without at last making a target of me."

by Saadi Shirazi.

Flight To Nature

SICK of the crowd, the toil, the strife,
Sweet Nature, how I turn to thee,
Seeking for renovated life,
By brawling brook and shady tree!

I knew thy rocks had spells of old,
To soothe the wanderer's woe to calm,
And in thy waters, clear and cold,
My fev'rish brow would seek for balm.

I've bent beneath thy ancient oak,
And sought for slumber in its shade,
And, as the clouds above me broke,
I dream'd to find the boon I pray'd;

For light--a blessed light--was given,
Wide streaming round me from above,
And in the deep, deep vaults of heaven,
There shone, methought, a look of love.

And, through the long, long summer hours,
When every bird had won its wing,
How sweet to think, amidst thy flowers,
That youth might yet renew its spring;--

That sacred season of the heart,
When every pulse with hope is strong,
And, still untaught by selfish art,
Truth fears no guile, and love no wrong.

And who, but nature's self, could yield
The blessing in the prayer I made,
Throned in her realm of wood and field,
Of rocky realm and haunted shade?

Who, but that magic queen, whose sway
Drives winter from his path of strife,
Whilst all her thousand fingers play,
With bud and bird, in games of life!

With these a kindred life I ask,--
Not wealth that mortals vainly seek;
But, in heaven's sunshine let me bask,
My heart as glowing as my cheek;--

An idle heart, that would not heed
That chiding voice, when duty comes,
To drag the soul, but freshly freed,
Back to cold toils and weary glooms.

No lure she finds in mortal schemes,
Which wiser fancies still reprove,--
Far happier in her woodland dreams,
With one sweet teacher, taught by love!

Thou, Nature, that magician be,
Restore each dream that taught the boy,
That warm'd his hope, that made him free,
While wisdom took the shape of joy;

And I will bless thee with a song,
As fond as hers, that idle bird,
That sings above me all day long,
As if she knew I watch'd and heard.

by William Gilmore Simms.

The Vaudois Teacher

'O Lady fair, these silks of mine
are beautiful and rare,-
The richest web of the Indian loom, which beauty's
queen might wear;
And my pearls are pure as thy own fair neck, with whose
radiant light they vie;
I have brought them with me a weary way,-will my
gentle lady buy?'

The lady smiled on the worn old man through the
dark and clustering curls
Which veiled her brow, as she bent to view his
silks and glittering pearls;
And she placed their price in the old man's hand
and lightly turned away,
But she paused at the wanderer's earnest call,-
'My gentle lady, stay!

'O lady fair, I have yet a gem which a purer
lustre flings,
Than the diamond flash of the jewelled crown on
the lofty brow of kings;
A wonderful pearl of exceeding price, whose virtue
shall not decay,
Whose light shall be as a spell to thee and a
blessing on thy way!'

The lady glanced at the mirroring steel where her
form of grace was seen,
Where her eye shone clear, and her dark locks
waved their clasping pearls between;
'Bring forth thy pearl of exceeding worth, thou
traveller gray and old,
And name the price of thy precious gem, and my
page shall count thy gold.'

The cloud went off from the pilgrim's brow, as a
small and meagre book,
Unchased with gold or gem of cost, from his
folding robe he took!
'Here, lady fair, is the pearl of price, may it prove
as such to thee
Nay, keep thy gold-I ask it not, for the word of
God is free!'

The hoary traveller went his way, but the gift he
left behind
Hath had its pure and perfect work on that high-
born maiden's mind,
And she hath turned from the pride of sin to the
lowliness of truth,
And given her human heart to God in its beautiful
hour of youth

And she hath left the gray old halls, where an evil
faith had power,
The courtly knights of her father's train, and the
maidens of her bower;
And she hath gone to the Vaudois vales by lordly
feet untrod,
Where the poor and needy of earth are rich in the
perfect love of God!

by John Greenleaf Whittier.

Quare Fatigasti

Two years ago I was thinking
On the changes that years bring forth ;
Now I stand where I then stood drinking
The gust and the salt sea froth ;
And the shuddering wave strikes, linking
With the waves subsiding and sinking,
And clots the coast herbage, shrinking,
With the hue of the white cere-cloth.

Is there aught worth losing or keeping ?
The bitters or sweets men quaff ?
The sowing or the doubtful reaping ?
The harvest of grain or chaff ?
Or squandering days or heaping,
Or waking seasons or sleeping,
The laughter that dries the weeping,
Or the weeping that drowns the laugh ?

For joys wax dim and woes deaden,
We forget the sorrowful biers,
And the garlands glad that have fled in
The merciful march of years ;
And the sunny skies, and the leaden,
And the faces that pale or redden,
And the smiles that lovers are wed in
Who are born and buried in tears.

And the myrtle bloom turns hoary,
And the blush of the rose decays,
And sodden with sweat and gory
Are the hard won laurels and bays ;
We are neither joyous nor sorry
When time has ended our story,
And blotted out grief and glory,
And pain, and pleasure, and praise.

Weigh justly, throw good and bad in
The scales, will the balance veer
With the joys or the sorrows had in
The sum of a life's career ?
In the end, spite of dreams that sadden
The sad, or the sanguine madden,
There is nothing to grieve or gladden,
There is nothing to hope or fear.

'Thou hast gone astray,' quoth the preacher,
'In the gall of thy bitterness,'
Thou hast taught me in vain, oh, teacher !
I neither blame thee nor bless ;
If bitter is sure and sweet sure,
These vanish with form and feature—
Can the creature fathom the creature
Whose Creator is fathomless ?

Is this dry land sure ? Is the sea sure ?
Is there aught that shall long remain,
Pain, or peril, or pleasure,
Pleasure, or peril, or pain ?
Shall we labour or take our leisure,
And who shall inherit treasure,
If the measure with which we measure
Is meted to us again ?

I am slow in learning, and swift in
Forgetting, and I have grown
So weary with long sand sifting ;
T'wards the mist where the breakers moan
The rudderless bark is drifting,
Through the shoals and the quicksands shifting—
In the end shall the night-rack lifting,
Discover the shores unknown ?

by Adam Lindsay Gordon.

An Old Vagabond

HE was old and alone, and he sat on a stone to rest for awhile from the road:
His beard was white, and his eye was bright, and his wrinkles overflowed
With a mild content at the way life went; and I closed the book on my knee:
'I will venture a look in this living book,' I thought, as he greeted me.

And I said: ' My friend, have you time to spend to tell me what makes you glad?'
'Oh, ay, my lad,' with a smile; 'I'm glad that I'm old, yet am never sad!'

'But why?' said I; and his merry eye made answer as much as his tongue;
'Because,' said he, 'I am poor and free who was rich and a slave when young.
There is naught but age can allay the rage of the passions that rule men's lives;
And a man to be free must a poor man be, for unhappy is he who thrives:
He fears for his ventures, his rents and debentures, his crops, and his son, and his wife;
His dignity's slighted when he's not invited; he fears every day of his life.
But the man who is poor, and by age has grown sure that there are no surprises in years,
Who knows that to have is no joy, nor to save, and who opens his eyes and his ears
To the world as it is, and the part of it his, and who says: They are happy, these birds,
Yet they live day by day in improvident way—improvident? What were the words
Of the Teacher who taught that the field-lilies brought the lesson of life to a man?
Can we better the thing that is school-less, or sing more of love than the nightingale can?
See that rabbit—what feature in that pretty creature needs science or culture or care?
Send this dog to a college and stuff him with knowledge, will it add to the warmth of his hair?
Why should mankind, apart, turn from Nature to Art, and declare the exchange better-planned?
I prefer to trust God for my living than plod for my bread at a master's hand,
A man's higher being is knowing and seeing, not having and toiling for more;
In the senses and soul is the joy of control, not in pride or luxurious store.
Yet my needs are the same as the kingling's whose name is a terror to thousands: some bread,
Some water and milk,—I can do without silk,—some wool, and a roof for my head.
What more is possest that will stand the grim test of death's verdict? What riches remain
To give joy at the last, all the vanities past?—Ay, ay, that's the word—they are vain
And vexatious of spirit to all who inherit belief in the world and its ways.
And so, old and alone, sitting here on a stone, I smile with the birds at the days.'

And I thanked him, and went to my study, head bent, where I laid down my book on its shelf;
And that day all the page that I read was my age, and my wants, and my joys, and myself.

by John Boyle O'Reilly.

On The Death Of E. Waller, Esq.

How, to thy Sacred Memory, shall I bring
(Worthy thy Fame) a grateful Offering?
I, who by Toils of Sickness, am become
Almost as near as thou art to a Tomb?
While every soft, and every tender Strain
Is ruffl'd, and ill-natur'd grown with Pain.
But, at thy Name, my languisht Muse revives,
And a new Spark in the dull Ashes strives.
I hear thy tuneful Verse, thy Song Divine;
And am lnspir'd by every charming Line.
But, Oh! –––––––––
What Inspiration, at the second hand,
Can an Immortal Elegic Command?
Unless, Me Pious Offerings, mine should be
Made Sacred, being Consecrate to thee.
Eternal, as thy own Almighty Verse,
Should be those Trophies that adom thy Hearse.
The Thought Illustrious, and the Fancy Young;
The Wit Sublime, the Judgment Fine, and Strong;
Soft, as thy Notes to Sacharissa sung.
Whilst mine, like Transitory Flowers, decay,
That come to deck thy Tomb a short-liv'd Day.
Such Tributes are, like Tenures, only fit
To shew from whom we hold our Right to Wit.
Hafl, wondrous Bard, whose Heav'n-born Genius first
My Infant Muse, and Blooming Fancy Nurst.
With thy soft Food of Love I first began,
Then fed on nobler Panegyrick Strain,
Numbers Seraphic! and, at every View,
My Soul extended, and much larger grew:

Where e're I Read, new Raptures seiz'd my Blood;
Methought I heard the Language of a God.
Long did the untun'd World in Ignorance stray,
Producing nothing that was Great and Gay,
Till taught, by thee, the true Poetick way.
Rough were the Tracts before, Dull, and Obscure;
Nor Pleasure, nor Instruction could procure.
Their thoughtless Labour could no Passion move;
Sure, in that Age, the Poets knew not Love:
That Charming God, like Apparitions, then
Was only talk'd on, but ne're seen by Men:
Darkness was o're the Muses Land displaid,
And even the Chosen Tribe unguided straid.
Till, by thee rescu'd from th' Egyptian Night,
They now look up, and view the God of Light,
That taught them how to Love, and how to Write;
And to Enhance the Blessing which Heav'n lent,
When for our great Instructor thou wert sent.
Large was thy Life, but yet thy Glories more;
And, like the Sun, did still dispense thy Power,
Producing somthing wondrous every hour:
And, in thy Circulary Course, didst see
The very Life and Death of Poetry.
Thou saw'st the Generous Nine neglected lie,
None listning to their Heav'nly Harmony;
The World being grown to that low Ebb of Sense,
To disesteem the noblest Excellence;
And no Encouragement to Phophets shewn,
Who in past Ages got so great Renown.
Though Fortune Elevated thee above
Its scanty Gratitude, or fickle Love;
Yet, fallen with the World, untir'd by Age,
Scorning th'unthinking Crowd, thou quit'st the Stage.

by Aphra Behn.

Verses For After-Dinner

PHI BETA KAPPA SOCIETY, 1844
I WAS thinking last night, as I sat in the cars,
With the charmingest prospect of cinders and stars,
Next Thursday is--bless me!--how hard it will be,
If that cannibal president calls upon me!

There is nothing on earth that he will not devour,
From a tutor in seed to a freshman in flower;
No sage is too gray, and no youth is too green,
And you can't be too plump, though you're never too lean.

While others enlarge on the boiled and the roast,
He serves a raw clergyman up with a toast,
Or catches some doctor, quite tender and young,
And basely insists on a bit of his tongue.

Poor victim, prepared for his classical spit,
With a stuffing of praise and a basting of wit,
You may twitch at your collar and wrinkle your brow,
But you're up on your legs, and you're in for it now.

Oh think of your friends,--they are waiting to hear
Those jokes that are thought so remarkably queer;
And all the Jack Horners of metrical buns
Are prying and fingering to pick out the puns.

Those thoughts which, like chickens, will always thrive best
When reared by the heat of the natural nest,
Will perish if hatched from their embryo dream
In the mist and the glow of convivial steam.

Oh pardon me, then, if I meekly retire,
With a very small flash of ethereal fire;
No rubbing will kindle your Lucifer match,
If the fiz does not follow the primitive scratch.

Dear friends, who are listening so sweetly the while,
With your lips double--reefed in a snug little smile,
I leave you two fables, both drawn from the deep,--
The shells you can drop, but the pearls you may keep.

. . . . . . . . . . .

The fish called the FLOUNDER, perhaps you may know,
Has one side for use and another for show;
One side for the public, a delicate brown,
And one that is white, which he always keeps down.

A very young flounder, the flattest of flats,
(And they 're none of them thicker than opera hats,)
Was speaking more freely than charity taught
Of a friend and relation that just had been caught.

'My! what an exposure! just see what a sight!
I blush for my race,--he is showing his white
Such spinning and wriggling,--why, what does he wish?
How painfully small to respectable fish!'

Then said an Old SCULPIN,--'My freedom excuse,
You're playing the cobbler with holes in your shoes;
Your brown side is up,--but just wait till you're tried
And you'll find that all flounders are white on one side.'

. . . . . . . . . .

There's a slice near the PICKEREL'S pectoral fins,
Where the thorax leaves off and the venter begins,
Which his brother, survivor of fish-hooks and lines,
Though fond of his family, never declines.

He loves his relations; he feels they'll be missed;
But that one little tidbit he cannot resist;
So your bait may be swallowed, no matter how fast,
For you catch your next fish with a piece of the last.

And thus, O survivor, whose merciless fate
Is to take the next hook with the president's bait,
You are lost while you snatch from the end of his line
The morsel he rent from this bosom of mine!

by Oliver Wendell Holmes.

To Dr. Sherlock, On His Practical Discourse Concerning Death

Forgive the muse who, in unhallow'd strains,
The saint one moment from his God detains;
For sure whate'er you do, where'er you are,
'Tis all but one good work, one constant prayer.
Forgive her; and entreat that God to whom
Thy favour'd vows with kind acceptance come,
To raise her notes to that sublime degree
Which suits a song of piety and thee.
Wondrous good man! whose labours may repel
The force of sin, may stop the rage of hell;
Thou, like the Baptist, from thy God was sent,
The crying voice to bid the world repent.
Thee youth shall study, and no more engage
Their flattering wishes for uncertain age,
No more with fruitless care and cheated strife
Chase fleeting pleasure through this maze of life;
Finding the wretched all they there can have
But present food, and but a future grave;
Each, great as Philip's victor son, shall view
This abject world, and weeping ask a new.
Decrepit age shall read thee, and confess
Thy labours can assuage where med'cines cease;
Shall bless thy words, their wounded soul's relief,
The drops that sweeten their last dregs of life:
Shall look to heaven, and laugh at all beneath,
Own riches gather'd trouble, fame a breath,
And life an ill whose only cure is death.
Thy even thoughts with so much plainness flow,
Their sense untutor'd infancy may know;
Yet to such height is all that plainness wrought,
Wit may admire, and letter'd pride be taught.
Easy in words thy style, in sense sublime,
On its blest steps each age and sex may rise;
'Tis like the ladder in the Patriarch's dream,
Its foot on earth, its height above the skies.
Diffused its virtue, boundless is its power;
'Tis public health, and universal cure:
Of heavenly manna 'tis a second feast,
A nation's food, and all to every taste.
To its last height mad Britain's guilt was rear'd,
And various death for various crimes she fear'd:
With your kind work her drooping hopes revive;
You bid her read, repent, adore, and live,
You wrest the bolt from Heaven's avenging hand,
Stop ready death, and save a sinking land.
O! save us still; still bless us with thy stay:
O! want thy heaven till we have learn'd the way:
Refuse to leave thy destined charge too soon,
And for the church's good defer thy own.
O! live, and let thy works urge our belief;
Live to explain thy doctrine by thy life;
Till future infancy, baptized by thee,
Grow ripe in years, and old in piety;
Till christians yet unborn be taught to die.
Then in full age and hoary holiness
Retire, great teacher, to thy promised bliss;
Untouch'd thy tomb, uninjured be thy dust,
As thy own fame among the future just,
Till in last sounds, the dreadful trumpet speaks;
Till judgement calls, and quicken'd nature wakes;
Till through the utmost earth and deepest sea
Our scatter'd atoms find their destined way,
In haste to clothe their kindred souls again,
Perfect our state, and build immortal man:
Then fearless thou, who well sustain'dst the fight,
To paths of joy and tracks of endless light,
Lead up all those who heard thee and believed;
'Midst thy own flock, great shepherd, be received
And glad all heaven with millions thou hast saved.

by Matthew Prior.

Wendell Phillips

WHAT shall we mourn? For the prostrate tree that sheltered the young green wood?
For the fallen cliff that fronted the sea, and guarded the fields from the flood?
For the eagle that died in the tempest, afar from its eyrie's brood?

Nay, not for these shall we weep; for the silver cord must be worn,
And the golden fillet shrink back at last, and the dust to its earth return;
And tears are never for those who die with their face to the duty done;
But we mourn for the fledglings left on the waste, and the fields where the wild waves run.

From the midst of the flock he defended, the brave one has gone to his rest;
And the tears of the poor he befriended their wealth of affliction attest.
From the midst of the people is stricken a symbol they daily saw,
Set over against the law books, of a Higher than Human Law;
For his life was a ceaseless protest, and his voice was a prophet's cry
To be true to the Truth and faithful, though the world were arrayed for the Lie.
From the hearing of those who hated, a threatening voice has past;
But the lives of those who believe and die are not blown like a leaf on the blast.
A sower of infinite seed was he, a woodman that hewed toward the light,
Who dared to be traitor to Union when Union was traitor to Right!

' Fanatic! ' the insects hissed, till he taught them to understand
That the highest crime may be written in the highest law of the land.
'Disturber' and 'Dreamer' the Philistines cried when he preached an ideal creed,
Till they learned that the men who have changed the world with the world have disagreed;
That the remnant is right, when the masses are led like sheep to the pen;
For the instinct of equity slumbers till roused by instinctive men.

It is not enough to win rights from a king and write them down in a book.
New men, new lights; and the fathers' code the sons may never brook.
What is liberty now were license then: their freedom oar yoke would be;
And each new decade must have new men to determine its liberty.
Mankind is a marching army, with a broadening front the while:
Shall it crowd its bulk on the farm-paths, or clear to the outward file?
Its pioneers are the dreamers who fear neither tongue nor pen
Of the human spiders whose silk is wove from the lives of toiling men.

Come, brothers, here to the burial! But weep not, rather rejoice,
For his fearless life and his fearless death; for his true, unequalled voice,
Like a silver trumpet sounding the note of human right;
For his brave heart always ready to enter the weak one's fight;
For his soul unmoved by the mob's wild shout or the social sneer's disgrace;
For his freeborn spirit that drew no line between class or creed or race.

Come, workers; here was a teacher, and the lesson he taught was good:
There are no classes or races, but one human brotherhood;
There are no creeds to be outlawed, no colors of skin debarred;
Mankind is one in its rights and wrongs—one right, one hope, one guard.
By his life he taught, by his death we learn the great reformer's creed:
The right to be free, and the hope to be just, and the guard against selfish greed.
And richest of all are the unseen wreaths on his coffin-lid laid down
By the toil-stained hands of workmen—their sob, their kiss, and their crown

by John Boyle O'Reilly.

Ode Vii: To The Right Reverend Benjamin Lord Bishop Of Winchester

I. 1.
For toils which patriots have endur'd,
For treason quell'd and laws secur'd,
In every nation Time displays
The palm of honourable praise.
Envy may rail; and faction fierce
May strive: but what, alas, can those
(Though bold, yet blind and sordid foes)
To gratitude and love oppose,
To faithful story and persuasive verse?

I. 2.
O nurse of freedom, Albion, say,
Thou tamer of despotic sway,
What man, among thy sons around,
Thus heir to glory hast thou found?
What page, in all thy annals bright,
Hast thou with purer joy survey'd
Than that where truth, by Hoadly's aid,
Shines through imposture's solemn shade,
Through kingly and through sacerdotal night?

I. 3.
To him the Teacher bless'd,
Who sent religion, from the palmy field
By Jordan, like the morn to cheer the west,
And lifted up the veil which heaven from earth conceal'd,
To Hoadly thus his mandate he address'd:
'Go thou, and rescue my dishonor'd law
From hands rapacious and from tongues impure:
Let not my peaceful name be made a lure
Fell persecution's mortal snares to aid:
Let not my words be impious chains to draw
The freeborn soul in more than brutal awe,
To faith without assent, allegiance unrepaid.'

II. 1.
No cold or unperforming hand
Was arm'd by heaven with this command.
The world soon felt it: and, on high,
To William's ear with welcome joy
Did Locke among the blest unfold
The rising hope of Hoadly's name,
Godolphin then confirm'd the fame;
And Somers, when from earth he came,
And generous Stanhope the fair sequel told.

II. 2.
Then drew the lawgivers around,
(Sires of the Grecian name renown'd)
And listening ask'd, and wondering knew,
What private force could thus subdue
The vulgar and the great combin'd;
Could war with sacred folly wage;
Could a whole nation disengage
From the dread bonds of many an age,
And to new habits mould the public mind.

II. 3.
For not a conqueror's sword,
Nor the strong powers to civil founders known,
Were his: but truth by faithful search explor'd,
And social sense, like seed, in genial plenty sown.
Wherever it took root, the soul (restor'd
To freedom) freedom too for others sought.
Not monkish craft the tyrant's claim divine,
Not regal zeal the bigot's cruel shrine
Could longer guard from reason's warfare sage;
Not the wild rabble to sedition wrought,
Nor synods by the papal Genius taught,
Nor St. John's spirit loose, nor Atterbury's rage.

III. 1.
But where shall recompence be found?
Or how such arduous merit crown'd?
For look on life's laborious scene:
What rugged spaces lie between
Adventurous virtue's early toils
And her triumphal throne! The shade
Of death, mean time, does oft invade
Her progress; nor, to us display'd,
Wears the bright heroine her expected spoils.

III. 2.
Yet born to conquer is her power:
—O Hoadly, if that favourite hour
On earth arrive, with thankful awe
We own just heaven's indulgent law,
And proudly thy success behold;
We attend thy reverend length of days
With benediction and with praise,
And hail Thee in our public ways
Like some great spirit fam'd in ages old.

III. 3.
While thus our vows prolong
Thy steps on earth, and when by us resign'd
Thou join'st thy seniors, that heroic throng
Who rescu'd or preserv'd the rights of human kind,
O! not unworthy may thy Albion's tongue
Thee still, her friend and benefactor, name:
O! never, Hoadly, in thy country's eyes,
May impious gold, or pleasure's gaudy prize,
Make public virtue, public freedom, vile;
Nor our own manners tempt us to disclaim
That heritage, our noblest wealth and fame,
Which Thou hast kept intire from force and factious guile.

by Mark Akenside.

Ralph Waldo Emerson

OUT of the cloud that dimmed his sunset light,
Into the unknown firmament withdrawn
Beyond the mists and shadows of the night,
We mourn the friend and teacher who has gone.
As in the days of old when Plato freed
The Athenian youths into a heavenlier sphere,
Long will the age with reverence hear and heed
The sweet deep music of our poet-seer.
For to his eye all objects and events
Spoke a symbolic language; and his mind
Pierced with the poet's vision through the dense
Dull surface to the larger truth behind.
And yet no solitary mystic trained
To spin a metaphysic web was he;
But open-eyed to all that life contained,
And the broad earth, of living harmony.
Nature adopted him from boyhood's hour.
The pines, the elms, the willows knew him well.
The lonely streams where blushed the cardinal-flower,
And where the shy Rhodora's petals fell.
And well his mother's lore he loved and learned;
His master-hand her crudest stuff refined.
All that she gave he back to her returned
Woven with figures of the shaping mind.
It seemed as if the hill-tops where he met
The sunrise still the livery put on
Of nobler days, and never could forget
The Syrian splendors of the poet's dawn.
And books to him unfolded all their store;
What soul was in them he had eyes to see.
And past and present turned up golden ore,
Transmuted by his mind's fine alchemy.
He drew his circles of so wide a sweep
That they encompassed every sect and creed.
Beneath the thought which seemed to others deep
His swifter spirit dived with brilliant speed.
His keen, clear intuition knit the threads
Of truths disjoined in one symmetric whole;
And barren wayside weeds and scattered shreds
Of facts found mystic meanings in his soul.
He dared to ope the windows to the breeze
Of Nature, when sectarians shuddering frowned,
While through the close air of their cloistered ease
The leaves of creeds fell fluttering to the ground;
Yet lived to see harsh theologians change
From blind mistrust to love the truth he taught;
And shallow wits grow dumb beneath his range
Of brilliant apothegm and daring thought.
Choice words and images like Shakspeare's best
Dropped from his lips and waited on his pen.
His voice in tuneful eloquence expressed
The manliest minds of Plutarch's noblest men.
For him our Western world its keen, dry lore
Recorded with a stenographic hand,
While the far Orient climes for tribute bore
The scriptures old of many a pagan land.
He saw the Soul whose breath all being breathes; —
The Life that glows in atoms and in suns;
The Law that binds; the Beauty that enwreathes;
The Ideal that all mortal wit outruns.
Yet close to earth and common duties bound,
Pledged to all true and gracious tasks he stood.
His presence made a sunshine all around,
His daily life a bond of brotherhood.
He needed not to worship at a shrine
Purer than private hours might well approve.
His missal was illumed with thoughts divine,
His rosary strung with kindly deeds of love.
Yet love and justice were at one with him;
And on the base oppressor's brow the stain
And brand were laid, not in derision grim,
But sad and fateful as the mark of Cain.
Thus, true as needle to the polar star,
He espoused the righteous cause, rebuked the wrong,
And flashed chivalric 'gainst a nation's bar
Of precedent, though fixed and sanctioned long.
Poet and sage! thy lofty muse demands
An insight deeper than the times attain.
Across the stagnant pools and drifting sands
Of thought I see thee like a sacred fane
Rise sunlit in the broad expanse of time;
And young and old shall greet from far thy light,
And pilgrims turn from many an old-world clime
To hail thy star-like dome of stainless white.
The wise will know thee, and the good will love.
The age to come will feel thy impress given
In all that lifts the race a step above
Itself, and stamps it with the seal of heaven.

by Christopher Pearse Cranch.

To My Old Readers

You know 'The Teacups,' that congenial set
Which round the Teapot you have often met;
The grave DICTATOR, him you knew of old,--
Knew as the shepherd of another fold
Grayer he looks, less youthful, but the same
As when you called him by a different name.
Near him the MISTRESS, whose experienced skill
Has taught her duly every cup to fill;
'Weak;' 'strong;' 'cool;' 'lukewarm;' 'hot as you can pour;'
'No sweetening;' 'sugared;' 'two lumps;' 'one lump more.'
Next, the PROFESSOR, whose scholastic phrase
At every turn the teacher's tongue betrays,
Trying so hard to make his speech precise
The captious listener finds it overnice.

Nor be forgotten our ANNEXES twain,
Nor HE, the owner of the squinting brain,
Which, while its curious fancies we pursue,
Oft makes us question, 'Are we crack-brained too?'

Along the board our growing list extends,
As one by one we count our clustering friends,--
The youthful DOCTOR waiting for his share
Of fits and fevers when his crown gets bare;
In strong, dark lines our square-nibbed pen should draw
The lordly presence of the MAN OF LAW;
Our bashful TUTOR claims a humbler place,
A lighter touch, his slender form to trace.
Mark the fair lady he is seated by,--
Some say he is her lover,--some deny,--
Watch them together,--time alone can show
If dead-ripe friendship turns to love or no.
Where in my list of phrases shall I seek
The fitting words of NUMBER FIVE to speak?
Such task demands a readier pen than mine,--
What if I steal the Tutor's Valentine?

Why should I call her gracious, winning, fair?
Why with the loveliest of her sex compare?
Those varied charms have many a Muse inspired,--
At last their worn superlatives have tired;
Wit, beauty, sweetness, each alluring grace,
All these in honeyed verse have found their place;
I need them not,--two little words I find
Which hold them all in happiest form combined;
No more with baffled language will I strive,--
All in one breath I utter: Number Five!

Now count our teaspoons--if you care to learn
How many tinkling cups were served in turn,--
Add all together, you will find them ten,--
Our young MUSICIAN joined us now and then.
Our bright DELILAH you must needs recall,
The comely handmaid, youngest of us all;
Need I remind you how the little maid
Came at a pinch to our Professor's aid,--
Trimmed his long locks with unrelenting shears
And eased his looks of half a score of years?

Sometimes, at table, as you well must know,
The stream of talk will all at once run low,
The air seems smitten with a sudden chill,
The wit grows silent and the gossip still;
This was our poet's chance, the hour of need,
When rhymes and stories we were used to read.
One day a whisper round the teacups stole,--
'No scrap of paper in the silver bowl!'
(Our 'poet's corner' may I not expect
My kindly reader still may recollect?)
'What! not a line to keep our souls alive?'
Spoke in her silvery accents Number Five.
'No matter, something we must find to read,--
Find it or make it,--yes, we must indeed!
Now I remember I have seen at times
Some curious stories in a book of rhymes,--
How certain secrets, long in silence sealed,
In after days were guessed at or revealed.
Those stories, doubtless, some of you must know,--
They all were written many a year ago;
But an old story, be it false or true,
Twice told, well told, is twice as good as new;
Wait but three sips and I will go myself,
And fetch the book of verses from its shelf.'
No time was lost in finding what she sought,--
Gone but one moment,--lo! the book is brought.

'Now, then, Professor, fortune has decreed
That you, this evening, shall be first to read,--
Lucky for us that listen, for in fact
Who reads this poem must know how to _act_.'
Right well she knew that in his greener age
He had a mighty hankering for the stage.
The patient audience had not long to wait;
Pleased with his chance, he smiled and took the bait;
Through his wild hair his coaxing fingers ran,--
He spread the page before him and began.

by Oliver Wendell Holmes.

Marthy's Younkit

The mountain brook sung lonesomelike, and loitered on its way
Ez if it waited for a child to jine it in its play;
The wild-flowers uv the hillside bent down their heads to hear
The music uv the little feet that had somehow grown so dear;
The magpies, like winged shadders, wuz a-flutterin' to an' fro
Among the rocks an' holler stumps in the ragged gulch below;
The pines an' hemlocks tosst their boughs (like they wuz arms) and made
Soft, sollum music on the slope where he had often played;
But for these lonesome, sollum voices on the mountain-side,
There wuz no sound the summer day that Marthy's younkit died.

We called him Marthy's younkit, for Marthy wuz the name
Uv her ez wuz his mar, the wife uv Sorry Tom,--the same
Ez taught the school-house on the hill, way back in '69,
When she marr'd Sorry Tom, wich owned the Gosh-all-Hemlock mine!
And Marthy's younkit wuz their first, wich, bein' how it meant
The first on Red Hoss Mountain, wuz truly a' event!
The miners sawed off short on work ez soon ez they got word
That Dock Devine allowed to Casey what had just occurred;
We loaded up an' whooped around until we all wuz hoarse
Salutin' the arrival, wich weighed ten pounds, uv course!

Three years, and sech a pretty child!--his mother's counterpart!
Three years, an' sech a holt ez he had got on every heart!
A peert an' likely little tyke with hair ez red ez gold,
A-laughin', toddlin' everywhere,--'nd only three years old!
Up yonder, sometimes, to the store, an' sometimes down the hill
He kited (boys is boys, you know,--you couldn't keep him still!)
An' there he'd play beside the brook where purpul wild-flowers grew,
An' the mountain pines an' hemlocks a kindly shadder threw,
An' sung soft, sollum toons to him, while in the gulch below
The magpies, like strange sperrits, went flutterin' to an' fro.

Three years, an' then the fever come,--it wuzn't right, you know,
With all us old ones in the camp, for that little child to go;
It's right the old should die, but that a harmless little child
Should miss the joy uv life an' love,--that can't be reconciled!
That's what we thought that summer day, an' that is what we said
Ez we looked upon the piteous face uv Marthy's younkit dead.
But for his mother's sobbin', the house wuz very still,
An' Sorry Tom wuz lookin', through the winder, down the hill,
To the patch beneath the hemlocks where his darlin' used to play,
An' the mountain brook sung lonesomelike an' loitered on its way.

A preacher come from Roarin' Crick to comfort 'em an' pray,
'Nd all the camp wuz present at the obsequies next day;
A female teacher staged it twenty miles to sing a hymn,
An' we jined her in the chorus,--big, husky men an' grim
Sung "Jesus, Lover uv my Soul," an' then the preacher prayed,
An' preacht a sermon on the death uv that fair blossom laid
Among them other flowers he loved,--wich sermon set sech weight
On sinners bein' always heeled against the future state,
That, though it had been fashionable to swear a perfec' streak,
There warn't no swearin' in the camp for pretty nigh a week!

Last thing uv all, four strappin' men took up the little load
An' bore it tenderly along the windin', rocky road,
To where the coroner had dug a grave beside the brook,
In sight uv Marthy's winder, where the same could set an' look
An' wonder if his cradle in that green patch, long an' wide,
Wuz ez soothin' ez the cradle that wuz empty at her side;
An' wonder if the mournful songs the pines wuz singin' then
Wuz ez tender ez the lullabies she'd never sing again,
'Nd if the bosom of the earth in wich he lay at rest
Wuz half ez lovin' 'nd ez warm ez wuz his mother's breast.

The camp is gone; but Red Hoss Mountain rears its kindly head,
An' looks down, sort uv tenderly, upon its cherished dead;
'Nd I reckon that, through all the years, that little boy wich died
Sleeps sweetly an' contentedly upon the mountain-side;
That the wild-flowers uv the summer-time bend down their heads to hear
The footfall uv a little friend they know not slumbers near;
That the magpies on the sollum rocks strange flutterin' shadders make,
An' the pines an' hemlocks wonder that the sleeper doesn't wake;
That the mountain brook sings lonesomelike an' loiters on its way
Ez if it waited for a child to jine it in its play.

by Eugene Field.

THE husband's dire mishap, and silly maid,
In ev'ry age, have proved the fable's aid;
The fertile subject never will be dry:
'Tis inexhaustible, you may rely.
No man's exempt from evils such as these:--
Who thinks himself secure, but little sees.
One laughs at sly intrigues who, ere 'tis long,
May, in his turn, be sneered at by the throng:
With such vicissitudes, to be cast down,
Appears rank nonsense worthy Folly's crown.
He, whose adventures I'm about to write,
In his mischances,--found what gave delight.

A CERTAIN Citizen, with fortune large,
When settled with a handsome wife in charge,
Not long attended for the marriage fruit:
The lady soon put matters 'yond dispute;
Produced a girl at first, and then a boy,
To fill th' expecting parent's breast with joy.

THE son, when grown of size, a tutor had,
No pedant rude, with Greek and Latin mad,
But young and smart, a master too of arts,
Particularly learned in what imparts,
The gentle flame, the pleasing poignant pang,
That Ovid formerly so sweetly sang.
Some knowledge of good company he'd got;
A charming voice and manner were his lot;
And if we may disclose the mystick truth,
'Twas Cupid who preceptor made the youth.
He with the brother solely took a place,
That better he the sister's charms might trace;
And under this disguise he fully gained
What he desired, so well his part he feigned:
An able master, or a lover true,
To teach or sigh, whichever was in view,
So thoroughly he could attention get,
Success alike in ev'ry thing he met.

IN little time the boy could construe well
The odes of Horace:--Virgil's fable tell;
And she whose beauty caught the tutor's eyes,
A perfect mistress got of heaving sighs.
So oft she practised what the master taught,
Her stomach feeble grew, whate'er was sought;
And strange suspicions of the cause arose,
Which Time at length was driven to disclose.

MOST terribly the father raged and swore;
Our learned master, frightened, left the door,
The lady wished to take the youth for life;
The spark desired to make the girl his wife;
Both had the Hymeneal knot in view,
And mutual soft affection fondly knew.
At present love is little more than name:
In matrimony, gold's the only aim.
The belle was rich, while he had nothing got;
For him 'twas great:--for her a narrow lot.

O DIRE corruption, age of wretched ways!
What strange caprice such management displays!
Shall we permit this fatal pow'r to reign?
Base int'rest's impulse: hideous modern stain;
The curse of ev'ry tender soft delight,
That charms the soul and fascinates the sight.

BUT truce to moral; let's our tale resume;
The daughter scared; the father in a fume;
What could be done the evil to repair,
And hide the sad misfortune of the fair?
What method seek?--They married her in haste;
But not to him who had the belle debased,
For reasons I've sufficiently detailed;
To gain her hand a certain wight prevailed,
Who store of riches relished far above
The charms of beauty, warmed with fondest love.
Save this the man might well enough be thought:
In family and wealth just what was sought;
But whether fool or not, I cannot trace,
Since he was unacquainted with the case;
And if he'd known it, was the bargain bad?
Full twenty thousand pounds he with her had
A sprightly youthful wife to ease his care,
And with him ev'ry luxury to share.

HOW many tempted by the golden ore,
Have taken wives whose slips they know before;
And this good man the lady chaste believed,
So truly well she managed and deceived.
But when four months had passed, the fair-one showed.
How very much she to her lessons owed;
A little girl arrived: the husband stared
Cried he, what father of a child declared!
The time's too short: four months! I'm taken in!
A family should not so soon begin.

AWAY he to the lady's father flew,
And of his shame a horrid picture drew;
Proposed to be divorced: much rage disclosed;
The parent smiled and said, pray be composed;
Speak not so loud: we may be overheard,
And privacy is much to be preferred.
A son-in-law, like you, I once appeared,
And similar misfortune justly feared;
Complaint I made, and mentioned a divorce;
Of heat and rage the ordinary course.

THE father of my wife, who's now no more,
(Heav'n guard his soul, the loss I oft deplore,)
A prudent honest man as any round,
To calm my mind, a nice specifick found;
The pill was rather bitter, I admit;
But gilding made it for the stomach fit,
Which he knew how to manage very well:
No doctor in it him could e'er excel;
To satisfy my scruples he displayed
A CONTRACT (duly stamped and ably made),
Four thousand to secure, which he had got,
On similar occasion for a blot;
His lady's father gave it to efface
Domestick diff'rences and like disgrace:
With this my spouse's fortune he increased;
And instantly my dire complaining ceased.
From family to family the deed
Should pass, 'twill often prove a useful meed;
I kept it for the purpose:--do the same
Your daughter, married, may have equal blame.
On this the son-in-law the bond received,
And, with a bow, departed much relieved.

MAY Heav'n preserve from trouble those who find,
At cheaper rate, to be consoled inclined.

by Jean De La Fontaine.

WITH A COPY OF WOOLMAN'S JOURNAL.


Maiden! with the fair brown tresses
Shading o'er thy dreamy eye,
Floating on thy thoughtful forehead
Cloud wreaths of its sky.

Youthful years and maiden beauty,
Joy with them should still abide,--
Instinct take the place of Duty,
Love, not Reason, guide.

Ever in the New rejoicing,
Kindly beckoning back the Old,
Turning, with the gift of Midas,
All things into gold.

And the passing shades of sadness
Wearing even a welcome guise,
As, when some bright lake lies open
To the sunny skies,

Every wing of bird above it,
Every light cloud floating on,
Glitters like that flashing mirror
In the self-same sun.

But upon thy youthful forehead
Something like a shadow lies;
And a serious soul is looking
From thy earnest eyes.

With an early introversion,
Through the forms of outward things,
Seeking for the subtle essence,
And the bidden springs.

Deeper than the gilded surface
Hath thy wakeful vision seen,
Farther than the narrow present
Have thy journeyings been.

Thou hast midst Life's empty noises
Heard the solemn steps of Time,
And the low mysterious voices
Of another clime.

All the mystery of Being
Hath upon thy spirit pressed,--
Thoughts which, like the Deluge wanderer,
Find no place of rest:

That which mystic Plato pondered,
That which Zeno heard with awe,
And the star-rapt Zoroaster
In his night-watch saw.

From the doubt and darkness springing
Of the dim, uncertain Past,
Moving to the dark still shadows
O'er the Future cast,

Early hath Life's mighty question
Thrilled within thy heart of youth,
With a deep and strong beseeching
What and where is Truth?

Hollow creed and ceremonial,
Whence the ancient life hath fled,
Idle faith unknown to action,
Dull and cold and dead.

Oracles, whose wire-worked meanings
Only wake a quiet scorn,--
Not from these thy seeking spirit
Hath its answer drawn.

But, like some tired child at even,
On thy mother Nature's breast,
Thou, methinks, art vainly seeking
Truth, and peace, and rest.

O'er that mother's rugged features
Thou art throwing Fancy's veil,
Light and soft as woven moonbeams,
Beautiful and frail

O'er the rough chart of Existence,
Rocks of sin and wastes of woe,
Soft airs breathe, and green leaves tremble,
And cool fountains flow.

And to thee an answer cometh
From the earth and from the sky,
And to thee the hills and waters
And the stars reply.

But a soul-sufficing answer
Hath no outward origin;
More than Nature's many voices
May be heard within.

Even as the great Augustine
Questioned earth and sea and sky,
And the dusty tomes of learning
And old poesy.

But his earnest spirit needed
More than outward Nature taught;
More than blest the poet's vision
Or the sage's thought.

Only in the gathered silence
Of a calm and waiting frame,
Light and wisdom as from Heaven
To the seeker came.

Not to ease and aimless quiet
Doth that inward answer tend,
But to works of love and duty
As our being's end;

Not to idle dreams and trances,
Length of face, and solemn tone,
But to Faith, in daily striving
And performance shown.

Earnest toil and strong endeavor
Of a spirit which within
Wrestles with familiar evil
And besetting sin;

And without, with tireless vigor,
Steady heart, and weapon strong,
In the power of truth assailing
Every form of wrong.

Guided thus, how passing lovely
Is the track of Woolman's feet!
And his brief and simple record
How serenely sweet!

O'er life's humblest duties throwing
Light the earthling never knew,
Freshening all its dark waste places
As with Hermon's dew.

All which glows in Pascal's pages,
All which sainted Guion sought,
Or the blue-eyed German Rahel
Half-unconscious taught

Beauty, such as Goethe pictured,
Such as Shelley dreamed of, shed
Living warmth and starry brightness
Round that poor man's head.

Not a vain and cold ideal,
Not a poet's dream alone,
But a presence warm and real,
Seen and felt and known.

When the red right-hand of slaughter
Moulders with the steel it swung,
When the name of seer and poet
Dies on Memory's tongue,

All bright thoughts and pure shall gather
Round that meek and suffering one,--
Glorious, like the seer-seen angel
Standing in the sun!

Take the good man's book and ponder
What its pages say to thee;
Blessed as the hand of healing
May its lesson be.

If it only serves to strengthen
Yearnings for a higher good,
For the fount of living waters
And diviner food;

If the pride of human reason
Feels its meek and still rebuke,
Quailing like the eye of Peter
From the Just One's look!

If with readier ear thou heedest
What the Inward Teacher saith,
Listening with a willing spirit
And a childlike faith,--

Thou mayst live to bless the giver,
Who, himself but frail and weak,
Would at least the highest welfare
Of another seek;

And his gift, though poor and lowly
It may seem to other eyes,
Yet may prove an angel holy
In a pilgrim's guise.

by John Greenleaf Whittier.

Elegy Iv. Anno Aet. 18. To My Tutor, Thomas Young, Chaplain Of The English Merchants Resident At Hamburg (Translated From Milton)

Hence, my epistle--skim the Deep--fly o'er
Yon smooth expanse to the Teutonic shore!
Haste--lest a friend should grieve for thy delay--
And the Gods grant that nothing thwart thy way!
I will myself invoke the King who binds
In his Sicanian ecchoing vault the winds,
With Doris and her Nymphs, and all the throng
Of azure Gods, to speed thee safe along.
But rather, to insure thy happier haste,
Ascend Medea's chariot, if thou may'st,
Or that whence young Triptolemus of yore
Descended welcome on the Scythian shore.
The sands that line the German coast descried,
To opulent Hamburg turn aside,
So call'd, if legendary fame be true,
From Hama, whom a club-arm'd Cimbrian slew.
There lives, deep-learn'd and primitively just,
A faithful steward of his Christian trust,
My friend, and favorite inmate of my heart--
That now is forced to want its better part!
What mountains now, and seas, alas! how wide!
From me this other, dearer self divide,
Dear, as the sage renown'd for moral truth
To the prime spirit of the Attic youth!
Dear, as the Stagyrite to Ammon's son,
His pupil, who disdain'd the world he won!
Nor so did Chiron, or so Phoenix shine
In young Achilles' eyes, as He in mine.
First led by him thro' sweet Aonian shade
Each sacred haunt of Pindus I survey'd;
And favor'd by the muse, whom I implor'd,
Thrice on my lip the hallow'd stream I pour'd.
But thrice the Sun's resplendent chariot roll'd
To Aries, has new ting'd his fleece with gold,
And Chloris twice has dress'd the meadows gay,
And twice has Summer parch'd their bloom away,
Since last delighted on his looks I hung,
Or my ear drank the music of his tongue.
Fly, therefore, and surpass the tempest's speed!
Aware thyself that there is urgent need.
Him, ent'ring, thou shalt haply seated see
Beside his spouse, his infants on his knee,
Or turning page by page with studious look
Some bulky Father, or God's Holy Book,
Or minist'ring (which is his weightiest care)
To Christ's assembled flock their heav'nly fare.
Give him, whatever his employment be,
Such gratulation as he claims from me,
And with a down-cast eye and carriage meek
Addressing him, forget not thus to speak.
If, compass'd round with arms, thou canst attend
To verse, verse greets thee from a distant friend,
Long due and late I left the English shore,
But make me welcome for that cause the more.
Such from Ulysses, his chaste wife to cheer,
The slow epistle came, tho' late, sincere.
But wherefore This? why palliate I a deed,
For which the culprit's self could hardly plead?
Self-charged and self-condemn'd, his proper part
He feels neglected, with an aching heart;
But Thou forgive--Delinquents who confess,
And pray forgiveness, merit anger less;
From timid foes the lion turns away,
Nor yawns upon or rends a crouching prey,
Even pike-wielding Thracians learn to spare,
Won by soft influence of a suppliant's prayer;
And heav'n's dread thunderbolt arrested stands
By a cheap victim and uplifted hands.
Long had he wish'd to write, but was witheld,
And writes at last, by love alone compell'd,
For Fame, too often true when she alarms,
Reports thy neighbouring-fields a scene of arms;
Thy city against fierce besiegers barr'd,
And all the Saxon Chiefs for fight prepar'd.
Enyo wastes thy country wide around,
And saturates with blood the tainted ground;
Mars rests contented in his Thrace no more,
But goads his steeds to fields of German gore,
The ever-verdant olive fades and dies,
And peace, the trumpet-hating goddess, flies,
Flies from that earth which justice long had left,
And leaves the world of its last guard bereft.
Thus horror girds thee round. Meantime alone
Thou dwell'st, and helpless in a soil unknown,
Poor, and receiving from a foreign hand
The aid denied thee in thy native land.
Oh, ruthless country, and unfeeling more
Than thy own billow-beaten chalky shore!
Leav'st Thou to foreign Care the Worthies giv'n
By providence, to guide thy steps to Heav'n?
His ministers, commission'd to proclaim
Eternal blessings in a Saviour's name?
Ah then most worthy! with a soul unfed
In Stygian night to lie for ever dead.
So once the venerable Tishbite stray'd
An exil'd fugitive from shade to shade,
When, flying Ahab and his Fury wife,
In lone Arabian wilds he shelter'd life;
So, from Philippi wander'd forth forlorn
Cilician Paul, with sounding scourges torn;
And Christ himself so left and trod no more
The thankless Gergesenes' forbidden shore.
But thou take courage, strive against despair,
Quake not with dread, nor nourish anxious care.
Grim war indeed on ev'ry side appears,
And thou art menac'd by a thousand spears,
Yet none shall drink thy blood, or shall offend
Ev'n the defenceless bosom of my friend;
For thee the Aegis of thy God shall hide,
Jehova's self shall combat on thy side,
The same, who vanquish'd under Sion's tow'rs
At silent midnight all Assyria's pow'rs,
The same who overthrew in ages past,
Damascus' sons that lay'd Samaria waste;
Their King he fill'd and them with fatal fears
By mimic sounds of clarions in their ears,
Of hoofs and wheels and neighings from afar
Of clanging armour and the din of war.
Thou therefore, (as the most affiicted may)
Still hope, and triumph o'er thy evil day,
Look forth, expecting happier times to come,
And to enjoy once more thy native home!

by William Cowper.

The Growth Of Sym

Now Sym was a Glug; and 'tis mentioned so
That the tale reads perfectly plain as we go.
In his veins ran blood of that stupid race
Of docile folk, who inhabit the place
Called Gosh, sad Gosh, where the tall trees sigh
With a strange, significant sort of cry
When the gloaming creeps and the wind is high.

When the deep shades creep and the wind is high
The trees bow low as the gods ride by:
Gods of the gloaming, who ride on the breeze,
Stooping to heaften the birds and the trees.
But each dull Glug sits down by his door,
And mutters, ' 'Tis windy!' and nothing more,
Like the long-dead Glugs in the days of yore.

When Sym was born there was much to-do,
And his parents thought him a joy to view;
But folk not prejudiced saw the Glug,
As his nurse remarked, 'In the cut of his mug.'
For he had their hair, and he had their eyes,
And the Glug expression of pained surprise,
And their predilection for pumpkin pies.

And his parents' claims were a deal denied
By his maiden aunt on his mother's side,
A tall Glug lady of fifty-two
With a slight moustache of an auburn hue.
'Parental blither!' she said quite flat.
'He's an average Glug; and he's red and fat!
And exceedingly fat and red at that!'

But the father, joi, when he gazed on Sym,
Dreamed great and wonderful things for him.
Said he, 'If the mind of a Glug could wake
Then, Oh, what a wonderful Glug he'd make!
We shall teach this laddie to play life's game
With a different mind and a definite aim:
A Glug in appearance, yet not the same.'

But the practical aunt said, 'Fudge! You fool!
We'll pack up his dinner and send him to school.
He shall learn about two-times and parsing and capes,
And how to make money with inches on tapes.
We'll apprentice him then to the drapery trade,
Where, I've heard it reported, large profits are made;
Besides, he can sell us cheap buttons and braid.'

So poor young Sym, he was sent to school,
Where the first thing taught is the Golden Rule.
'Do unto others,' the teacher said . . .
Then suddenly stopped and scratched his head.
'You may look up the rest in a book,' said he.
'At present it doesn't occur to me;
But do it, whatever it happens to be.'

'And now,' said the teacher, 'the day's task brings
Consideration of practical things.
If a man makes a profit of fifteen pounds
On one week's takings from two milk rounds,
How many . . .' And Sym went dreaming away
To the sunlit lands where the field-mice play,
And wrens hold revel the livelong day.

He walked in the welcoming fields alone,
While from far, far away came the pedagogue's drone:
'If a man makes . . .Multiply . . . Abstract nouns . . .
From B take . . .Population of towns . . .
Rods, poles or perches . . . Derived from Greek
Oh, the hawthorn buds came out this week,
And robins are nesting down by the creek.

So Sym was head of his class not once;
And his aunt repeatedly dubbed him 'Dunce.'
But, 'Give him a chance,' said his father, Joi.
'His head is abnormally large for a boy.'
But his aunt said, 'Piffie! It's crammed with bosh!
Why, he don't know the rivers and mountains of Gosh,
Nor the names of the nephews of good King Splosh!'

In Gosh, when a youth gets an obstinate look,
And copies his washing-bill into a book,
And blackens his boot-heels, and frowns at a joke,
'Ah, he's getting sense,' say the elderly folk.
But Sym, he would laugh when he ought to be sad;
Said his aunt, 'Lawk-a-mussy! What's wrong with the lad?
He romps with the puppies, and talks to the ants,
And keeps his loose change in his second-best pants,
And stumbles all over my cauliflower plants!'

'There is wisdom in that,' laughed the father, Joi.
But the aunt said, 'Toity!' and, 'Drat the boy!'
'He shall play,' said the father, 'some noble part.
Who knows but it may be in letters or art?
'Tis a dignified business to make folk think.'
But the aunt cried, 'What! Go messing with ink?
And smear all his fingers, and take to drink?
Paint hussies and cows, and end in the clink?'

So the argument ran; but one bright Spring day
Sym settled it all in his own strange way.
''Tis a tramp,' he announced, 'I've decided to be;
And I start next Monday at twenty to three . . .'
When the aunt recovered she screamed, 'A tramp?
A low-lived, pilfering, idle scamp,
Who steals people's washing, and sleeps in the damp?'

Sharp to the hour Sym was ready and dressed.
'Young birds,' sighed the father, 'must go from the nest.
When the green moss covers those stones you tread,
When the green grass whispers above my head,
Mark well, wherever your path may turn,
They have reached the valley of peace who learn
That wise hearts cherish what fools may spurn.'

So Sym went off; and a year ran by,
And the father said, with a smile-masked sigh,
'It is meet that the young should leave the nest.'
Said the aunt, 'Don't spill that soup on your vest!
Nor mention his name! He's our one disgrace!
And he's probably sneaking around some place
With fuzzy black whiskers all over his face.'

But, under a hedge, by a flowering peach,
A youth with a little blue wren held speech.
With his back to a tree and his feet in the grass,
He watched the thistle-down drift and pass,
And the cloud-puffs, borne on a lazy breeze,
Move by on their errand, above the trees,
Into the vault of the mysteries.

'Now, teach me, little blue wren,' said he.
''Tis you can unravel this riddle for me.
I am 'mazed by the gifts of this kindly earth.
Which of them all has the greatest worth?'
He flirted his tail as he answered then,
He bobbed and he bowed to his coy little hen:
'Why, sunlight and worms!' said the little blue wren.

by Clarence Michael James Stanislaus Dennis.

Deborah's Parrot, A Village Tale

'Twas in a little western town
An ancient Maiden dwelt:
Her name was MISS, or MISTRESS, Brown,
Or DEBORAH, or DEBBY: She
Was doom'd a Spinster pure to be,
For soft delights her breast ne'er felt:
Yet, she had watchful Ears and Eyes
For ev'ry youthful neighbour,
And never did she cease to labour
A tripping female to surprize.

And why was she so wond'rous pure,
So stiff, so solemn--so demure?
Why did she watch with so much care
The roving youth, the wand'ring fair?
The tattler, Fame, has said that she
A Spinster's life had long detested,
But 'twas her quiet destiny,
Never to be molested !--
And had Miss DEBBY'S form been grac'd,
Fame adds,--She had not been so chaste;--
But since for frailty she would roam,
She ne'er was taught--to look at home .

Miss DEBBY was of mien demure
And blush'd, like any maid !
She could not saucy man endure
Lest she should be betray'd!
She never fail'd at dance or fair
To watch the wily lurcher's snare;
At Church, she was a model Godly!
Though sometimes she had other eyes
Than those, uplifted to the skies,
Leering most oddly!
And Scandal, ever busy, thought
She rarely practic'd--what she taught.

Her dress was always stiff brocade,
With laces broad and dear;
Fine Cobwebs ! that would thinly shade
Her shrivell'd cheek of sallow hue,
While, like a Spider, her keen eye,
Which never shed soft pity's tear,
Small holes in others geer could spy,
And microscopic follies, prying view.
And sorely vex'd was ev'ry simple thing
That wander'd near her never-tiring sting!

Miss DEBBY had a PARROT, who,
If Fame speaks true,
Could prate, and tell what neighbours did,
And yet the saucy rogue was never chid!
Sometimes, he talk'd of roving Spouses
Who wander'd from their quiet houses:
Sometimes, he call'd a Spinster pure
By names, that Virtue can't indure!
And sometimes told an ancient Dame
Such tales as made her blush with shame!
Then gabbled how a giddy Miss
Would give the boist'rous Squire a kiss!
But chiefly he was taught to cry,
Who with the Parson toy'd? O fie! "

This little joke, Miss DEBBY taught him,
To vex a young and pretty neighbour;
But by her scandal-zealous labour
To shame she brought him!
For, the Old PARROT, like his teacher
Was but a false and canting preacher,
And many a gamesome pair had sworn
Such lessons were not to be borne.

At last, Miss DEBBY sore was flouted
And by her angry neighbours scouted;
She never knew one hour of rest,
Of ev'ry Saucy Boor, the jest:
The young despis'd her, and the Sage
Look'd back on Time's impartial page;
They knew that youth was giv'n to prove
The season of extatic joy,
That none but Cynics would destroy,
The early buds of Love.
They also knew that DEBBY sigh'd
For charms that envious Time deny'd;
That she was vex'd with jealous Spleen
That Hymen pass'd her by, unseen.

For though the Spinster's wealth was known,
Gold will not purchase Love--alone .
She, and her PARROT, now were thought
The torments of their little Sphere;
He, because mischievously taught,
And She, because a maid austere !--
In short, she deem'd it wise to leave
A Place, where none remain'd, to grieve.

Soon, to a distant town remov'd,
Miss DEBBY'S gold an husband bought;
And all she had her PARROT taught,
(Her PARROT now no more belov'd,)
Was quite forgotten. But, alas!
As Fate would have it come to pass,
Her Spouse was giv'n to jealous rage,
For, both in Person and in Age ,
He was the partner of his love,
Ordain'd her second Self to prove!

One day, Old JENKINS had been out
With merry friends to dine,
And, freely talking, had, no doubt
Been also free with wine.
One said, of all the wanton gay
In the whole parish search it round,
None like the PARSON could be found,
Where a frail Maid was in the way.
Another thought the Parson sure
To win the heart of maid or wife;
And would have freely pledg'd his life
That young, or old, or rich or poor
None could defy
The magic of his roving eye!

JENKINS went home, but all the night
He dream'd of this strange tale!
Yet, bless'd his stars ! with proud delight,
His partner was not young, nor frail.
Next morning, at the breakfast table.
The PARROT, loud as he was able,
Was heard repeatedly to cry,
Who with the Parson toy'd? O fie!"

Old JENKINS listen'd, and grew pale,
The PARROT then, more loudly scream'd,
And MISTRESS JENKINS heard the tale
And much alarm'd she seem'd!
Trembling she tried to stop his breath,
Her lips and cheek as pale as death!
The more she trembled, still the more
Old JENKINS view'd her o'er and o'er;
And now her yellow cheek was spread
With blushes of the deepest red.

And now again the PARROT'S Tale
Made his old Tutoress doubly pale;
For cowardice and guilt, they say
Are the twin brothers of the soul;
So MISTRESS JENKINS, her dismay
Could not controul!
While the accuser, now grown bold,
Thrice o'er, the tale of mischief told.

Now JENKINS from the table rose,
"Who with the Parson toy'd? " he cried.
"So MISTRESS FRAILTY, you must play,
"And sport, your wanton hours away.
"And with your gold, a pretty joke,
"You thought to buy a pleasant cloak;
"A screen to hide your shame--but know
"I will not blind to ruin go.--
"I am no modern Spouse , dy'e see,
"Gold will not gild disgrace, with me!"
Some say he seiz'd his fearful bride,
And came to blows!
Day after day, the contest dire
Augmented, with resistless ire!
And many a drubbing DEBBY bought
For mischief, she her PARROT taught!

Thus, SLANDER turns against its maker;
And if this little Story reaches
A SPINSTER, who her PARROT teaches,
Let her a better task pursue,
And here, the certain VENGEANCE view
Which surely will, in TIME, O'ERTAKE HER.

by Mary Darby Robinson.