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136

A CHILD'S FIRST IMPRESSION OF A STAR,

What sought they thus afar ?

Bright jewels of the mine?
The wealth of seas, the spoils of war?

They sought a faith's pure shrine!

Ay, call it holy ground,

The soil where first they trod!
They have left unstained what there they found, -

Freedom to worship God'

A CHILD'S FIRST IMPRESSION OF A STAR. -- Willis.

She had been told that God made all the stars
That twinkled up in heaven, and now she stood
Watching the coming of the twilight on,
As if it were a new and perfect world,
And this were its first eve. How beautiful
Must be the work of nature to a child
In its first fresh impression! Laura stood
By the low window, with the silken lash
Of her soft eye upraised, and her sweet mouth
Half parted with the new and strange delight
Of beauty that she could not comprehend,
And had not seen before. The purple folds
Of the low sunset clouds, and the blue sky
That looked so still and delicate above,
Filled her young heart with gladness, and the eve
Stole on with its deep shadows, and she still
Stood looking at the west with that half smile,
As if a pleasant thought were at her heart.
Presently, in the edge of the last tint
Of sunset, where the blue was melted in

To the first golden mellowness, a star
Stood suddenly. A laugh of wild delight
Burst from her lips, and, putting up her hands,
Her simple thought broke forth expressively, -
“ Father, dear father, God has made a star.”

TO A CHILD DURING SICKNESS. — Leigh Hunt.

Sleep breathes at last from out thee,
My little, patient boy!
And balmy rest about thee
Smooths off the day's annoy.
I sit me down, and think

Of all thy winning ways;
Yet almost wish, with sudden shrink,

That I had less to praise.

Thy sidelong, pillowed meckness,
Thy thanks to all that aid,
Thy heart, in pain and weakness,
Or 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.

138

THE DIRGE IN CYMBELINE.

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," — " is gone,'
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.

Yes, still he's fixed and sleeping !
This silence too the while, —
Its very hush and creeping
Seem whispering us a smile; —
Something divine and dim

Seems going by one's ear,
Like parting wings of cherubim,

Who say, “We've finished here.”

THE DIRGE IN CYMBELINE. - Collins.

To fair Fidele's grassy tomb

Soft maids and village hinds shall bring Each opening sweet, of earliest bloom,

And rifle all the breathing spring.

No wailing ghost shall dare appear

To vex with shrieks this quiet grove; But shepherd lads assemble here,

And youthful virgins own their love.

No withered witch shall here be seen,

No goblins lead their nightly crew; The female fays shall haunt the green,

And dress thy grave with pearly dew.

The redbreast oft at evening's hours

Shall kindly lend his little aid,
With hoary moss, and gathered flowers,

To deck the ground where thou art laid.

When howling winds, and beating rain,

In tempests shake thy sylvan cell; Or 'midst the chase on every plain,

The tender thought on thee shall dwell;

Each lonely scene shall thee restore,

For thee the tear be duly shed; Beloved, till life can charm no more;

And mourned, till Pity's self be dead.

THE PASSAGE.

FROM THE GERMAN OF UHLAND.

MANY a year is in its grave,
Since I crossed this restless wave :
And the evening, fair as ever,
Shines on ruin, rock, and river.

140

THAT EACH THING IS HURT OF ITSELF.

Then, in this same boat, beside,
Sat two comrades, old and tried;
One with all a father's truth,
One with all the fire of youth.

One on earth in silence wrought,
And his grave in silence sought;
But the younger, brighter form
Passed in battle and in storm!

So, whene'er I turn my eye
Back upon the days gone by,
Saddening thoughts of friends come o'er me,
Friends who closed their course before me.

Yet what binds us, friend to friend,
But that soul with soul can blend ?
Soul-like were those hours of yore;
Let us walk in soul once more!

Take, O boatman, thrice thy fee;
Take, - I give it willingly;
For, invisible to thee,
Spirits twain have crossed with me!

THAT EACH THING IS HURT OF ITSELF. - Old

English Poetry.

Wuy fearest thou the outward foe,

When thou thyself thy harm doth feed ?
Of grief or hurt, of pain or woe,

Within each thing is sown the seed.

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