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Try not the Pass !" the old man said ; “Dark lowers the tempest overhead,
The roaring torrent is deep and wide !” And loud that clarion voice replied,
Thy weary head upon this breast !”
Excelsior! “ Beware the pine-tree's withered branch !
Beware the awful avalanche!”
Excelsior !-- Longfellow.
LESSON 38.—THE BRIDGE.
I stood on the bridge at midnight,
As the clocks were striking the hour, And the moon rose o'er the city,
Behind the dark church-tower.
I saw her bright reflection
In the waters under me, Like a golden goblet falling
And sinking into the sea. And far in the hazy distance
Of that lovely night in June, The blaze of the flaming furnace
Gleamed redder than the moon. Among the long, black rafters
The wavering shadows lay, And the current that came from the ocean
Seemed to lift and bear them away ; As, sweeping and eddying through them,
Rose the belated tide,
The sea-weed floated wide.
Among the wooden piers,
That filled my eyes with tears.
In the days that had gone by,
And gazed on that wave and sky!
I had wished that the ebbing tido Would bear me away on its bosom
O’er the ocean wild and wide !
heart was hot and restless,
life was full of care, And the burden laid upon me
Seemed greater than I could bear. But now it has fallen from me,
It is buried in the sea; And only the sorrow of others
Throws its shadow over me.
Yet whenever I cross the river
On its bridge with wooden piers, Like the odour of brine from the ocean
Comes the thought of other years. And I think how
thousands Of care-encumbered men, Each bearing his burden of sorrow,
Have crossed the bridge since then.
Still passing to and fro,
And the old subdued and slow!
As long as the river flows,
As long as life has woes ;
And its shadows shall appear,
And its wavering image here.—Longfellow.
LESSON 39.-THE POET'S CALL.
PLEASANT it was, when woods were green,
And winds were soft and low,
Alternate come and go;
No sunlight from above,
The shadows hardly move.
I lay upon the ground; His hoary arms uplifted he,
And all the broad leaves over me
With one continuous sound :-
The feelings of a dream,-
O’er meadow, lake, and stream.
Bright visions, came to me,
Like ships upon the sea ;
Ere Fancy has been quell'd ;
age, And chronicles of Eld. And, loving still these quaint old themes,
Even in the city's throng
The holy land of song.
The spring, clothed like a bride,
I sought the woodlands wide.
It was a sound of joy !
As if I were a boy ;
And ever whispered, mild and low,
“ Come, be a child once more !”
Into the woodlands hoar;
Into the solemn wood,
prayer I stood. Before me rose an avenue
Of tall and sombrous pines ; Abroad their fan-like branches grew, And, where the sunshine darted through, Spread a vapour soft and blue,
In long and sloping lines.
Like a fast-falling shower,
As once upon the flower.
Ye were so sweet and wild !
Thou art no more a child !
Watered by living springs;
Its clouds are angels' wings.
Not mountains capped with snow, Nor forests sounding like the sea,