Изображения страниц




[ocr errors]

She dwells by Great Kenhawa's side,
In valleys green and cool,
And all her hope and all her pride
Are in the village school.
Her soul, like the transparent air
That robes the hills above,
Though not of earth, encircles there
All things with arms of love.
And thus she walks among her girls
With praise and mild rebukes;
Subduing e'en rude village churls
By her angelic looks.
She reads to them at eventide
Of One who came to save;
To cast the captives' chains aside,
And liberate the slave.

[ocr errors][merged small][merged small]

And oft the blessed time foretells
When all men shall be free;
And musical as silver bells,
Their falling chains shall be.
And following her beloved Lord
In decent poverty,
She makes her life one sweet record
And deed of charity.
For she was rich, and gave up all
To break the iron bands
Of those who waited in her hall,
And laboured in her lands.


Long since beyond the Southern Sea
Their outbound sails have sped,

While she in meek humility,
Now earns her daily bread.
It is their prayers which never cease,
That clothe her with such grace :
Their blessing is the light of peace,

35 That shines upon her face.

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow.



The flags of war like storm-birds fly,
The charging trumpets blow;
Yet rolls no thunder in the sky,
No earthquake strives below.



And, calm and patient, Nature keeps
Her ancient promise well,
Though o'er her bloom and greenness sweeps
The battle's breath of hell.
And still she walks in golden hours
Through harvest-happy farms,
And still she wears her fruits and flowers
Like jewels on her arms.
What mean the gladness of the plain,
This joy of eve and morn,
The mirth that shakes the beard of grain
And yellow locks of corn ?
Ah ! eyes may well be full of tears,
And hearts with hate are hot ;
But even-paced come round the years,
And Nature changes not.



She meets with smiles our bitter grief,
With songs our groans of pain ;
She mocks with tint of flower and leaf
The war-field's crimson stain.
Still, in the cannon's pause we hear
Her sweet thanksgiving psalm ;
Too near to God for doubt or fear,
She shares the eternal calm.


She knows the seed lies safe below
The fires that blast and burn;
For all the tears of blood we sow
She waits the rich return.


She sees with clearer eye than ours
The good of suffering born,-
The hearts that blossom like her flowers,
And ripen like her corn.



O, give to us, in times like these,
The vision of her eyes ;
And make her fields and fruited trees
Our golden prophecies !
O, give to us her finer ear !
Above this stormy din,
We too would hear the bells of cheer
Ring peace and freedom in !

John George Whittier.



Come up from the fields, father; here's a letter from our Pete, And come to the front door, mother; here's a letter from thy

dear son. Lo, ʼtis autumn; Lo where the fields, deeper green, yellower and redder,

Cool and sweeten Ohio's villages, with leaves fluttering in the moderate wind;

5 Where apples ripe in the orchards hang, and grapes on the

trellised vines (Smell you the smell of the grapes on the vines? Smell you the buckwheat, where the bees were lately buzzing ?) Above all, lo! the sky, so calm, so transparent after the rain

and with wondrous clouds; Below too all calm, all vital and beautiful—and the farm

prospers well.


Down in the fields all prospers well;
But now from the fields come, father-come at the daughter's


And come to the entry, mother—to the front door come, right



Fast as she can she hurries—something ominous—her steps

trembling; She does not tarry to smooth her white hair, nor adjust her

сар. Open the envelope quickly; Oh this is not our son's writing, yet his name is signed. Oh a strange hand writes for our dear son- 1-oh stricken

mother's soul ! All swims before her eyes-flashes with black-she catches

the main words only; Sentences broken-gunshot wound in the breast-cavalry

skirmish, taken to hospital, At present low, but will soon be better. Ah! now the single figure to me Amid all teeming and wealthy Ohio, with all its cities and

farms, Sickly white in the face and dull in the head, very faint, By the jamb of a door leans.




Grieve not so, dear mother (the just grown daughter speaks

through her sobs; The little sisters huddle around, speechless and dismayed). See, dearest mother, the letter says Pete will soon be better. Alas, poor boy, he will never be better (nor, may be, needs to

be better, that brave and simple soul). While they stand at home at the door he is dead already, 30 The only son is dead. But the mother needs to be better; She, with thin form, presently drest in black; By day her meals untouched-then at night fitfully sleeping,

often waking, In the midnight waking, weeping, longing with one deep longing,

35 Oh, that she might withdraw unnoticed, silent from life, escape

and withdraw To follow, to seek, to be with her dear dead son.

Walt Whitman.

[ocr errors]



Through the night, through the night,
In the saddest unrest,
Wrapt in white, all in white,
With her babe on her breast,
Walks the mother so pale,

5 Staring out on the gale

Through the night !
Through the night, through the night,
Where the sea lifts the wreck,
Land in sight, close in sight!
On the surf-flooded deck
Stands the father so brave,
Drawing on to his grave
Through the night!

Richard Henry Stoddard.


« ПредыдущаяПродолжить »