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And such a Man-so meek and unoffending-
Helpless and harmless as a babe: a Man,
by obvious signal to the world's protection,
Seanly dedicated-to decoy him!—
1. Oh, had you seen him living!—
I (so filled
W borror is this world) am unto thee
thing most precious, that it now contains:
Three through me alone must be revealed
Bywam thy Parent was destroyed, Idonea!
Ive the proofs !-
O miserable Father! ble command me to bless all mankind; der to this moment, have I ever wished Evd to any living thing; but hear me, Here, ye Heavens !—(kneeling)—may vengeance haunt the fiend
For the test cruel murder: let him live
A'd move in terror of the elements;
The shader send him on his knees to prayer
In the open streets, and let him think he sees,
feer he entereth the house of God,
Ted, self-moved, unsettling o'er his head;
Andes am, when he would lie down at night,
F to his wife the blood-drops on his pillow !
Mr. My voice was silent, but my heart hath
I'm (kuning on MARMADUKE). Left to the Upon this arm.
rey of that savage Man!
You led him towards the Convent?
Mar. That Convent was Stone-Arthur Castle.
Haid he call upon his Child!-0 Friend!
Thy vest is torn, thy cheek is deadly pale; I put denial on thy suit, and hence, Fat the pursued the monster?
CA wild that thou hadst perished in the flames! Im Here art thou, then can I be desolate ?— Kr. There was a time, when this protecting hand 4ainst the mighty; never more Sang wait upon a deed of mine.
Wad words for me to hear, for me, an
With the disastrous issue of last night, Thy perturbation, and these frantic words. Be calm, I pray thee!
I thought there was no harm: but that bad Man,
He bribed me with his gold, and looked so fierce.
Mercy! I said I know not what-oh pity me—
I said, sweet Lady, you were not his Daughter-
I am haunted ;-thrice this day
My conscience made me wish to be struck blind;
And then I would have prayed, and had no voice.
Idon. (to MARMADUKE). Was it my Father?—
Was meek and patient, feeble, old and blind,
Helpless, and loved me dearer than his life.
-But hear me. For one question, I have a heart
That will sustain me. Did you murder him?
Mar. No, not by stroke of arm. But learn the
Proof after proof was pressed upon me; guilt
Made evident, as seemed, by blacker guilt,
Whose impious folds enwrapped even thee; and truth
And innocence, embodied in his looks,
His words and tones and gestures, did but serve
With me to aggravate his crimes, and heaped
Ruin upon the cause for which they pleaded.
Then pity crossed the path of my resolve:
Confounded, I looked up to Heaven, and cast,
Idonea! thy blind Father, on the Ordeal
Of the bleak Waste-left him-and so he died !—
[IDONEA sinks senseless; Beggar, ELEANOR, &c.,
crowd round, and bear her off.
Why may we speak these things, and do no more;
Why should a thrust of the arm have such a power,
And words that tell these things be heard in vain?
She is not dead. Why!-if I loved this Woman,
I would take care she never woke again;
But she WILL wake, and she will weep for me,
And say, no blame was mine-and so, poor fool,
Will waste her curses on another name.
[He walks about distractedly.
OSWALD (to himself). Strong to o'erturn, strong [To MARMADUKE.
The starts and sallies of our last encounter
Were natural enough; but that, I trust,
Is all gone by. You have cast off the chains
That fettered your nobility of mind—
Delivered heart and head!
This is a paltry field for enterprise.
Mar. Ay, what shall we encounter next? This
Start not! Here is another face hard by ;
Come, let us take a peep at both together,
And, with a voice at which the dead will quake,
Resound the praise of your morality—
Of this too much.
[Drawing OSWALD towards the Cottage-stops short
at the door.
Men are there, millions, Oswald, Who with bare hands would have plucked out thy heart
And flung it to the dogs: but I am raised
Above, or sunk below, all further sense
Of provocation. Leave me, with the weight
Of that old Man's forgiveness on thy heart,
Pressing as heavily as it doth on mine.
Coward I have been; know, there lies not now
Within the compass of a mortal thought,
A deed that I would shrink from ;-but to endure,
That is my destiny. May it be thine:
Thy office, thy ambition, be henceforth
To feed remorse, to welcome every sting
Of penitential anguish, yea with tears.
When seas and continents shall lie between us—
The wider space the better-we may find
In such a course fit links of sympathy,
An incommunicable rivalship
Maintained, for peaceful ends beyond our view.
[Confused voices-several of the band enter-rush upon OSWALD and seize him.
One of them. I would have dogged him to the jaws of hell
Osw. Ha! is it so !-That vagrant Hag!-this
Of having left a thing like her alive!
Several voices. Despatch him!
If I pass beneath a rock
And shout, and, with the echo of my voice,
Bring down a heap of rubbish, and it crush me,
I die without dishonour. Famished, starved,
A Fool and Coward blended to my wish!
[Smiles scornfully and exullingly at ManmadUKE. Wal. 'Tis done! (stabs him.)
Another of the band. The ruthless Traitor !
A rash deed!-
With that reproof I do resign a station
Of which I have been proud.
Wil. (approaching MARMADUKE). O my poor Master!
Mar. Discerning Monitor, my faithful Wilfred, "Twas nothing more than darkness deepening Why art thou here? [Turning to WALLACE. darkness,
Wallace, upon these Borders,
And weakness crowned with the impotence of Many there be whose eyes will not want cause death!To weep that I am gone. Brothers in arms !
Your pupil is, you see, an apt proficient. (ironically). Raise on that dreary Waste a monument
That may record my story: nor let words—
Few must they be, and delicate in their touch
Asight itself-be there withheld from Her
Was, through most wicked arts, was made an ory.han
By One who would have died a thousand times,
To shield her from a moment's harm. To you,
Walace and Wilfred, I commend the Lady,
By lly nature reared, as if to make her
In al things worthier of that noble birth,
Whose long-suspended rights are now on the eve
Of restoration with your tenderest care
Watch over her, I pray- sustain her
A hermitage has furnished fit relief
To some offenders; other penitents,
Less patient in their wretchedness, have fallen,
Like the old Romar., on their own sword's point.
They had their choice: a wanderer must I go,
The Spectre of that innocent Man, my guide.
No human ear shall ever hear me speak;
No human dwelling ever give me food,
Or sleep, or rest: but, over waste and wild,
In search of nothing, that this earth can give,
But expiation, will I wander on-
A Man by pain and thought compelled to live,
Yet loathing life—till anger is appeased
In Heaven, and Mercy gives me leave to die.
But how he will come, and whither he goes, There's never a scholar in England knows.
God has given a kindlier power To the favoured strawberry-flower. Hither soon as spring is fled
You and Charles and I will walk ;
Lursing berries, ripe and red,
Then will hang on every stalk,
Each within its leafy bower;
And for that promise spare the flower!
CHARACTERISTICS OF A CHILD THREE
Lovro she is, and tractable, though wild;
And Innocence hath privilege in her
To demify arch looks and laughing eyes;
And feats of cunning; and the pretty round
Of trespasses, affected to provoke
Nex chastisement and partnership in play.
And, as a faggot sparkles on the hearth,
Not less if unattended and alone
Than when both young and old sit gathered round
And take delight in its activity;
Even so this happy Creature of herself la-sufficient; solitude to her
is the society, who fills the air
With gladness and involuntary songs.
La are her sallies as the tripping fawn's
Fr-started from the fern where she lay couched ;
Lathest-of, unexpected, as the stir
of the su: breeze ruffling the meadow-flowers,
Or from before it chasing wantonly
The many-coloured images imprest
Up the bosom of a placid lake.
He will suddenly stop in a cunning nook,
And ring a sharp 'larum ;-but, if you should look,
There's nothing to see but a cushion of snow
Round as a pillow, and whiter than milk,
And softer than if it were covered with silk.
Sometimes he'll hide in the cave of a rock,
Then whistle as shrill as the buzzard cock;
-Yet seek him,—and what shall you find in the
Nothing but silence and empty space;
Save, in a corner, a heap of dry leaves,
That he's left, for a bed, to beggars or thieves!
As soon as 'tis daylight to-morrow, with me
You shall go to the orchard, and then you will see
That he has been there, and made a great rout,
And cracked the branches, and strewn them about;
Heaven grant that he spare but that one upright
That looked up at the sky so proud and big
All last summer, as well you know,
Studded with apples, a beautiful show!
Hark! over the roof he makes a pause,
And growls as if he would fix his claws
Right in the slates, and with a huge rattle
Drive them down, like men in a battle:
-But let him range round; he does us no harm,
We build up the fire, we 're snug and warm ;
Untouched by his breath see the candle shines bright,
And burns with a clear and steady light;
Books have we to read,- but that half-stifled knell,
Alas! 'tis the sound of the eight o'clock bell.
-Come now we 'll to bed! and when we are there
He may work his own will, and what shall we care?
He may knock at the door,-we'll not let him in ;
May drive at the windows,-we 'll laugh at his din;
Let him seek his own home wherever it be ;
Here's a cozie warm house for Edward and me.
A MONTH, Sweet Little-ones, is past
Since your dear Mother went away,—
And she to-morrow will return;
To-morrow is the happy day.