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Looks down upon her with a smile,
A gracious smile, that seems to say—
“ Thou, thou art not a Child of Time,
But Daughter of the Eternal Prime."
SCORN not tlie Sonnet ; Critic, you have frowned,
Mindless of its just honors ; with this key Shakspeare unlocked his heart; the melody Of this small lute gave ease to Petrarch's wound; A thousand times this pipe did Tasso sound ; With it Camöens soothed an exile's grief ; The Sonnet glittered a gay myrtle leaf Amid the cypress with which Dante crowned His visionary brow; a glow-worm lamp, It cheered mild Spenser, called from Faery-land To struggle through dark ways; and, when a damp Fell round the path of Milton, in his hand The Thing became a trumpet; whence he blew Soul-animating strains-alas, too few!
A SIMPLE Child,
That lightly draws its breath,
And feels its life in every limb,
What should it know of death?
I met a little cottage Girl :
She was eight years old, she said ;
Her hair was thick with many a curl
That clustered round her head.
She had a rustic, woodland air,
And she was wildly clad :
eyes were fair, and
very -Her beauty made me glad.
“ Sisters and brothers, little Maid,
“ How many may you be ?"
“How many ? Seven in all,” she said,
And wondering looked at me.
“And where are they? I
She answered, “ Seven are we;
And two of us at Conway dwell,
And two are gone to sea.
Two of us in the church-yard lie,
My sister and my brother;
And, in the church-yard cottage, I
Dwell near them with my mother.”
“You say that two at Conway dwell,
And two are gone to sea,
ye are seven !-I
pray you tell, Sweet Maid, how this
Then did the little Maid reply,
"Seven boys and girls are we;
Two of us in the church-yard lie,
Beneath the church-yard tree.”
“You run about, my little Maid,
Your limbs they are alive;
If two are in the church-yard laid,
Then ye are only five.”
“ Their graves are green, they may be seen," The little Maid replied, “ Twelve steps or more from my mother's
door, And they are side by side.
My stockings there I often knit,
My kerchief there I hem ;
upon the ground I sit, And sing a song to them.
And often after sun-set, Sir,
When it is light and fair,
I take my little porringer,
And eat my supper there.
The first that died was sister Jane;
In bed she moaning lay,
Till God released her of her pain;
And then she went away.
So in the church-yard she was laid :
And, when the grass was dry,
Together round her grave we played,
My brother John and I.
And when the ground was white with snow,
And I could run and slide,
My brother John was forced to go,
And he lies by her side.”
“How many are you, then,” said I,
If they two are in heaven ?”' Quick was the little Maid's reply, O Master! we are seven.”
“But they are dead; those two are dead !
Their spirits are in heaven!”
'T was throwing words away : for still
The little Maid would have her will
Nay, we are seven !''
HE dwelt among the untrodden ways
Beside the springs of Dove,
A Maid whom there were none to praise
And very few to love.
A violet by a mossy stone
Half hidden from the eye! --Fair as a star, when only one
is shining in the sky.
She lived unknown, and few could know
When Lucy ceased to be ; But she is in her grave, and oh,
The difference to me!
IF from the public way you turn your steps
Up the tumultuous brook of Green-head Ghyll,
You will suppose that with an upright path
Your feet must struggle; in such bold ascent
The pastoral mountains front you, face to face.
But, courage! for around that boisterous brook
The mountains have all opened out themselves,
And made a hidden valley of their own.
No habitation can be seen; but they
Who journey thither find themselves alone
With a few sheep, with rocks and stones, and kites
That overhead are sailing in the sky.
It is in truth an utter solitude ;
Nor should I have made mention of this Dell
But for one object which you might pass by,
Might see and notice not. Beside the brook
Appears a straggling heap of unhewn stones !
And to that simple object appertains
A story—unenriched with strange events,
Yet not unfit, I deem, for the fireside,
Or for the summer shade. It was the first
Of those domestic tales that spake to me
Of Shepherds, dwellers in the valleys, men
Whom I already loved ;—not verily
For their own sakes, but for the fields and hills
Where was their occupation and abode.
And hence this Tale, while I was yet a Boy,
Careless of books, yet having felt the power
Of Nature, by the gentle agency
Of natural objects, led me on to feel
For passions that were not my own, and think