Изображения страниц
PDF
EPUB

LINES

WRITTEN IN EARLY SPRING.

I HEARD a thousand blended notes,
While in a grove I sate reclined,
In that sweet mood when pleasant thoughts
Bring sad thoughts to the mind.

To her fair works did nature link
The human soul that through me ran ;
And much it grieved my heart to think
What man has made of man.

Through primrose tufts, in that sweet bower,
The periwinkle trailed its wreaths;
And 'tis my faith that every flower
Enjoys the air it breathes.

The birds around me hopped and played ;
Their thoughts I cannot measure ;
But the least motion which they made,
It seemed a thrill of pleasure.

The budding twigs spread out their fan,
To catch the breezy air ;
And I must think, do all I can,
That there was pleasure there.

From heaven if this belief be sent, If such be nature's holy plan, Have I not reason to lament What man has made of man?

SIMON LEE

The old Huntsman, with an Incident in which he was

concerned.

In the sweet shire of Cardigan,
Not far from pleasant Ivor Hall,
An old man dwells, a little man,
'Tis said he once was tall.
Full five-and-thirty years he lived
A running huntsman merry ;
And still the centre of his cheek
Is blooming as a cherry.

No man like him the horn could sound,
And hill and valley rang with glee
When echo bandied round and round
The halloo of Simon Lee.
In those proud days he little cared
For husbandry or tillage ;
To blither tasks did Simon rouse
The sleepers in the village.

He all the country could outrun,
Could leave both man and horse behind ;
And often ere the chase was done
He reeled and was stone-blind.

And still there's something in the world
At which his heart rejoices ;
For when the chiming hounds are out,
He dearly loves their voices !

But, oh the heavy change ! bereft
Of health, strength, friends and kindred, see !
Old Simon to the world is left
In liveried poverty.
His master's dead, and no one now
Dwells in the Hall of Ivor;
Men, dogs, and horses, all are dead,
He is the sole survivor.

And he is lean, and he is sick,
His dwindled body's half awry ;
His ankles, too, are swoln and thick ;
His legs are thin and dry.
He has no son, he has no child ;
His wife, an aged woman,
Lives with him, near the waterfall
Upon the village common.

Beside their moss-grown hut of clay,
Not twenty paces from the door,
A scrap of land they have, but they
Are poorest of the poor.
This scrap of land he from the heath
Enclosed when he was stronger ;
But what avails it now, the land
Which he can till no longer ?

Oft, working by her husband's side,
Ruth does what Simon cannot do ;
For she, with scanty cause for pride,
Is stouter of the two.
And though you with your utmost skill
From labour could not wean them,
Alas ! 'tis very little-all
Which they can do between them.

Few months of life has he in store,
As he to you will tell,
For still, the more he works, the more
Do his weak ankles swell.
My gentle reader, I perceive,
How patiently you've waited,
And I'm afraid that you expect
Some tale will be related.

O reader ! had you in your mind
Such stores as silent thought can bring,
O gentle reader ! you would find
A tale in everything.
What more I have to say is short,
And you must kindly take it :
It is no tale ; but should you think,
Perhaps a tale you'll make it.

One summer day I chanced to see
This old man doing all he could
To unearth the root of an old tree,
A stump of rotten wood.

« ПредыдущаяПродолжить »