Abbildungen der Seite
PDF
EPUB

VIII.

“Now wherefore thus, by day and night, “ In rain, in tempest, and in snow “ Thus to the dreary mountain-top “ Does this poor woman go? “ And why sits she beside the thorn " When the blue day-light's in the sky, “ Or when the whirlwind's on the hilt, -“ Or frosty air is keen and still, * And wherefore does she cry “Oh wherefore? wherefore ? tell me why “Does she repeat that doleful cry?"

IX.

I cannot tell ; I wish I could;
For the true reason no one knows,
But if you'd gladly view the spot,
The spot to which she goes ;
The heap that's like an infant's grave,

The pond—and thorn, so old and grey,
Pass by her door-tis seldom shut--
And if you see her in her hut,
Then to the spot away!
I never heard of such as dare
Approach the spot when she is there.

X.

“ But wherefore to the mountain-top, “ Can this unhappy woman go, • Whatever star is in the skies, Whatever wind may blow?" Nay rack your brain— 'tis all in vain, I'll tell you every thing I know; But to the thorn and to the pond Which is a little step beyond, I wish that you would go : Perhaps when you are at the place You something of her tale may trace.

XI. I'll give you the best help I can: Before you up the mountain go, Up to the dreary mountain-top, I'll tell you all I know. 'Tis now some two and twenty years, Since she (her name is Martha Ray) Gave with a maiden's true good will Her company to Stephen Hill; And she was blithe and gay, And she was happy, happy still Whene'er she thought of Stephen Hill.

XII

And they had fix'd the wedding-day,
The morning that must wed them both ;
But Stephen to another maid
Had sworn another oath ;
And with this other maid to urch

[ocr errors]

Unthinking Stephen went-
Poor Martha! on that woful day
A cruel, cruel fire, they say,
Into her bones was sent :
It dried her body like a cinder,
And almost turn'd her brain to tinder.

XII.

They say, full six months after this,
While yet the summer leaves were green,
She to the mountain-top would go,
And there was often seen.
'Tis said, a child was in her womb,
As now to any eye was plain ;
She was with child, and she was mad,
Yet often she was sober sad
From her exceeding pain.
Oh me! ten thousand times I'd rather;
That he had died, that cruel father!

XIV. Sad case for such a brain to hold Communion with a stirring child ! Sad case, as you may think, for one Who had a brain so wild ! Last Christmas when we talked of this, Old Farmer Simpson did maintain, That in her wornb the infant wrought About its mother's heart, and brought Her senses back again : And when at last her time drew near, Her looks were calma, her senses clear.

[ocr errors]

No more I know, I wish I did,
And I would tell it all to you ;
For what became of this

poor

child There's none that ever knew : And if a child was born or no,

« ZurückWeiter »