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THE MODERN CAIN.-E. Evans Ellwards.
“Am I my brother's keeper ?"
When first the human heart-strings felt the touch
Of Death's cold fingers—when upon the earth
Shroudless and coilinless Death's first born lay,
Slain by the hand of violence; the wail
Of human grief a rose :-“ My son, my son !
Awake thee from this strange and awful sleep;
A mother mourns thec, and her tears of grief
Are falling on thy pale, unconscious brow:
Awake, and bless her with thy wonted smile.”
In vain, in vain ! that sleeper never woke. Ilis murderer Hed, but on his brow was fixed A stain which batlled wear and washing. As he fed A voice pursued bim to the wilderness. “Where is tlıy brother, Cain ?"
“ Am I my brother's keeper ?"
O, black impiety that seeks to shun
The dire responsibility of sin-
That cries with the ever wirning voice:
"Be still--a way, the crime is not only own-
My brother live--is dead, when, where,
Or how, it matters not, but he is dead.
Why judge the living for the dead one's fall ?"
"Am I my brother's keeper?"
Thou art thy brother's keeper, and his bloodl
Cries up to heaven against thee: every stone
Will find a tongue to curse thee, and the winds,
Will ever wail this question in thy car :
“Where is thy brother ?! Every sight and sound
Will mind thee of the lost.
I saw a man Deal Death unto his brother. Drop by drop The poison was distilled for cursed gold; Invisible to that poor, trembling slave. He seized the cup, he drank the poison down, Rushed forth into the streets-home had he none-1 Staggered and fell and miserably died.
l'hey buried him-ah ! little recks it where
His bloated form was given to the worms.
No stone marked that neglected, lonely spot;
No mourner sorrowing at evening came,
To pray by that unhallowed mound; no hand
Panted sweet flowers above his place of rest.
Years passed, and weeds and tangled briers grew
Above that sunken grave, and men forgot
Who slept there.
Once had lie friends,
A happy home was his, and love was his.
Ilis MARY loved him, and around him played
His smiling children. O, a dream of joy
Were those unclouded years, and, more than all,
He had an interest in the world above.
The big - Old Bible ? lay upon the stand,
And he was wont to read its sacred page
And then to pray :
66 Our Father, bless the poor
And save the tempted from the templer's art;
Save us from sin and let us ever be
United in thy love, and may we meet,
When life's last scenes are o'er, around the throne.”
This prayed he-thus lived he-years passed,
And ocr the sunshine of that happy home,
A cloud came from the pit; the fatal bolt
Fell from that cloud. The towering tree
Was shivered by the lightning's vengeful stroke,
And laid its coronal of glory low.
A happy home was ruined ; want and woe
Played with his children, and the joy of youth
Left their sweet faces no more to return.
His MARY's face grew pale and paler still,
Her eyes were dimmed with weeping, and her soul
Went out through those blue portals. ARY died
And yet he wept not. At the demon's call
He drowned his sorrow in the maddening bowl,
And when they buried her from sight, he sank
In drunken stupor by her new made grave!
Ilis friend was gone--he never had another,
And the world shrank from him, all save one,
And he still plied the bowl with deadly drugs
And bade him drink, forget his God, and die !
He died !
Cain ! Cain! where is thy brother now !
Lives he still-if dead, still where is he?
Where? In heaven? Go read the sacred page:
"No drunkard ever shall inherit there."
Who sent him to the pit ? Who dragged him down?
Who bound him hand and foot ? Who smiled and smiled
While yet the hellish work went on ? Who grasped
IIis gold-liis health-his life--- his bope-his all ?
Who saw his MARY fade and die ? Who saw
Ilis beggared children wandering in the streets ?
Speak-Coward—if thou hast a tonyte,
Tell why with hellish art you slew A MAN.
“Where is my brother ???
“Am I my brother's keeper ?"
Ah, man! A deeper mark is on your brow
Than that of Cain. Accursed was the name
Of him who slew a righteous man, whose soul
Was ripe for heaven ; thrice accursed he
Whose art malignant sinks a soul to hell.
A SOLILOQUY FROM HIAMLET.--Shakespeare. Oh, that this too too solid fleshi would melt, Thaw, and resolve itself into a dew! Or that the Everlasting had not fixed Ilis canon 'gainst self-slaughter! How weary, stale, llat, and unprofitable Seem to me all the uses of this world ! Fye on't! Oh fye! 'tis an unweeded garden, That grows to seed : things rank, and gross in nature, Possess it merely. That it should come to this! But two months dead !--nay, not so much, not iwo; So excellent a king ; that was, to this, Ilyperion to a satyr: so loving to my mother, That he might not beteem the winds of heaven Visit her face too roughly. Iicaven and earth! Must I remember? And yet, within a month.-
INDEPENDENCE BELL-JULY 4, 1776. event was announced by ringing the old State-House beil, which bore
When the Declaration of Independence was adopted by Congresa, the the inscription “Proclaim liberty throughout the land, to all the inhabi. tants thereof!" The old bellinan stationed his little grandson at the door of the hall, to await the instructions of the door-keeper when to ring. At the word, the young patriot rushed out, and clapping his hands, khouted :-“ Ring! Ring! RING!”
There was a tumult in the city,
In the quaint old Quaker town,
And the streets were rife with people
Pacing restless up and down-
People gathering at the corners,
Where they whispered each to each,
And the sweat stood on their temples
With the earnestness of speech.
As the bleak Atlantic currents
Lash the wild Newfoundland shore,
So they beat against the State House,
So they surged against the door;
And the mingling of their voices
Made a harmony profound,
Till the quiet street of Chestnut
Was all turbulent with sound.
“Will they do it?" “Dare they do it?"
“Who is speaking ?” “What's the news ?
"What of Adams ?" "What of Sherman 19
“Oh, God grant they won't refuse!" "Make some way there!" “Let me nearer!!
“I am stilling!” “Stifle, then!
When a nation's life's at hazard,
We've no time to think of men ! "
So they surged against the State House
While all solemnly inside
Sat the "Continental Congress,?
Truth and reason for their guide.
O'er a simple scroll debating,
Which, though simple it might be,
Yet should shake the clills of England
With the thunders of the free.
Far aloft in that high steeple
Sat the bellman, old and gray ;
He was weary of the tyrant
And his iron-sceptered sway
So he sat, with one hand ready
On the clapper of the bell,
When his eye could catch the signal,
The long-expected news, to tell.
See! See! The dense crowd quivers
Through all its lengthy line,
As the boy beside the portal
Hastens forth to give the sign! With his little hands uplifted,
Breezes dallying with his hair, Hark! with deep, clear intonation,
Breaks his young voice on the air: Hushed the people's swelling murmur,
Whilst the boy cries joyously ; “Ring!” he shouts, " Ring! grandpap.,
Ring ! oh, ring for Liberty !" Quickly, at the given signal
The old bellman lists his hand,
Forthi he sends the good news, making
Iron music through the land.
How they shouted! What rejoicing !
Ilow the old bell shook the air,
Till the clang of freedom rutiled
The calmly gliding Delaware ! How the bonfires and the torches
Lighted up the night's repose,
And from the flames, like fabled Phænix,
Our glorious liberty arose !
That old State House bell is silent,
Hushed is now its clamorous tongue; But the spirit it awaken'd
Still is living-ever young; And when we greet the smiling sunlight
On the fourth of each July, We will ne'er forget the bellman