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On the wide level of a mountain's head,
(I knew not where, but 'twas some faery place)
Their pinions, ostrich-like for sails outspread,
Two lovely children run an endless race,
A sister and a brother!
This far outstript the other;
Yet ever runs she with reverted face,
And looks and listens for the boy behind :
For he, alas! is blind!
O’er rough and smooth, with even step he pass’d,
And knows not whether he be first or last.
A Christmas Tale, told by a School-boy to his little Brothers
Underneath a huge oak tree
There was, of swine, a huge company,
That grunted as they crunch'd the mast:
For that was ripe, and fell full fast.
Then they trotted away, for the wind grew high :
One acorn they left, and no more might you spy.
Next came a raven, that liked not such folly:
He belonged, it was said, to the witch Melancholy!
Blacker was he than blackestjet,
Flew low in the rain, and his feathers not wet.
He pick'd up the acorn and buried it strait
By the side of a river both deep and great.
Where then did the raven go?
He went high and low,
Over hill, over dale, did the black raven go.
Many autumns, many springs
Travell’d he* with wandering wings.
Many summers, many winters,
I can't tell half his adventures.
At length he came back, and with him a she,
And the acorn was grown to a tall oak tree.
They built them a nest in the topmost bough,
And young ones they had, and were happy enow,
But soon came a woodman, in leathern guise,
His brow, like a pent-house, hung over his eyes.
He'd an ax in his hand, not a word he spoke,
But with many a hem! and a sturdy stroke,
At length be brought down the poor raven's own oak, His young ones were killd: for they could not depart, And their mother did die of a broken heart.
The boughs from the trunk the woodman did severAnd they floated it down on the course of tne river.
* Seventeen or eighteen years ago, an artist of some celebrity was so pleased with this doggerel, that he amused himself with the thought of making a Child's Picture Book of it; but he could not hit on a picture for these four lines. I suggested a round-about with four seats, and the four seasons, as children, with Time for the shew-man.
They saw'd it in planks, and its bark they did strip,
And with this tree and others they made a good ship.
The ship, it was launch’d; but in sight of the land
Such a storm there did rise as no ship could withstand.
It bulg'd on a rock, and the waves rush'd in fast:
The old raven flew round and round, and caw'd to the
He heard the last shriek of the perishing souls-
See! see! o'er the topmast the mad water rolls !
Right glad was the raven, and off he went fleet,
And Death riding home on a cloud he did meet,
And he thank'd him again and again for this treat:
They had taken his all, and revenge was sweet!
We must not think so; but forget and forgive,
And what Heaven gives life to, we'll still let it live?
Altered and modernized from an old Poet.
I love, and he loves me again,
Yet dare I not tell who :
For if the nymphs should know my swain,
I fear they'd love him too.
Yet while my joy's unknown,
Its rosy buds are but half-blown: What no one with me shares, seems scarce my own.
I'll tell, that if they be not glad,
They yet may envy me:
But then if I grow jealous mad,
And of them pitied be,
'Twould vex me worse than scorn!
And yet it cannot be forborn, Unless my heart would like my thoughts be torn.