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HARK ! 'tis the Robin's shrill yet mellow pipe,
That, in the voiceless calm of the young morn,
Commingles with my dreams :-lo! as I draw
Aside the curtains of my couch, he sits,
Deep overhowered by broad geranium leaves,
Upon the dewy window-sill, and turns
His restless black eye here and there, in search
Of crumbs, or shelter from the icy breath
Of morning, rushing from the Polar sea.
For now November, with a brumal robe,
Mantles the moist and slowly-fading earth;
Dim sullen clouds hang o'er the cheerless sky;
And yellow leaves lie thick beneath the groves,
'Tis earliest sunrise ; through the watery mass Of vapour, movus on like shadowy isles,
Silently through the pale gray cope of heaven,
With what a feeble, inefficient glow
Looks out the day :-all things are still and calm;
Half-wreathed in azure mist the barren woods,
And as a picture quiet.
Why, with unnatural tameness, com'st thou thus
Offering in fealty thy sweet, simple songs
To the abodes of man? Doth the rude wind
Now chill thy woodland home, bare, and despoiled
Of all its summer greenery; and sigh
Through the bright sheltering bowers, where cheerily
Were heard thy notes the long warm summer through?
And do the unpropitious fields deny
Food for thy little wants; and Poverty,
With tiny grip, drive thee to hostile walls,
Though terrors flutter at thy little heart,
To ease the pangs which must be satisfied ?
Alas! the dire sway of Necessity,
Queen of the iron rod, implacable,
Oft makes the darkest, most repuguant things
Familiar to us; links us to the feet
Of all we feared or hated-or despised ;-
Even to our subtlest and most tyrannous foe
May we be driven for shelter, and in him
May our sole refuge lie; when all the joys
That, iris-like, wantoned around the path
Of prosperous fortune, one by one have fled ;
When day shuts in upon our hopes, and night
Ushers blank darkness only.
Should pity thee, and have compassion on
Thy helpless state, poor bird ! whoše loveliness
Is yet untouched, and whose melodious note,
Sweeter by melancholy rendered, steals
With a sweet supplication to the heart,
Telling that thou wert happy once, and yet,
Only were thy small, pressing wants supplied
By charity, couldst be most happy still ;
Is it not so?
Out on unfeeling man!
Will he, who drives the beggar from his gate,
And to the cry of Penury shuts up
Each avenue of feeling, will he deign
To think that such as thou deserve his aid?
No! when the gust raves, and the floods descend,
Or the frost pinches, thou may’st, at dim eve,
With forced and fearful love approach his home;
What time through twilight gleams the earliest star,
And the bright blazing of his cheerful hearth
Flickers upon the lattice : but, in vain,
Thy chirp repeated earnestly; the flap
Against the opposing pane of thy small wing;
He hears thee not; he heeds not; but, at morn,
The ice-enamoured schoolboy, early afoot,
Finds thy small bulk beneath the alder stump,
Thy bright eyes closed, and tiny talons clenched, . Stiff in the gripe of death.
... 'Tis not in mighty things That the benevolent heart is truly shown, But in the tone and temper of the mind, Ever forgiving, gentle, and alive To pity, ready to forgive, intent On all the little thousand charities, Which day by day calls forth. ;
Oh! as we hope . Forgiveness of our earthly trespasses, Of all our erring deeds and wayward thoughts, When time's dread reckoning comes-oh! as we hope Mercy, who need it much, let us, away From pity never turning, mould our hearts To charity; and, from all withering blight Preserve them, and all deadening influences; So 'twill be best for us :—the all-seeing Eye, . Which numbers each particular hair, and notes From heaven the sparrow's fall, will pass not o'er, Without reward, deeds unremarked by man; Nor overlook the timely clemency, Which soothed and stilled the murmurs of distress.
MARY QUEEN OF SCOTS AND CHATELAR;
Twilight Musings in Holyrood.
There are no mysteries into which we are so fond of diving as the mysteries of the heart. The hero of the best novel in the world, if he could not condescend to fall in love, might march through his three volumes and excite no more sensation than his grandmother; and a newspaper without a breach of a promise of marriage, is a thing not to be endured.
It is not my intention to affect any singular exception from this natural propensity, and I am ready to confess that the next best thing to being in love one's self, is to speculate on the hopes and fears and fates of others. How truly interesting are the little schemes and subterfuges, the romancing and storytelling of our dove-eyed and gentle-hearted playfellows! I have listened to a lame excuse for a stolen ride in a tilbury, or a duett in the woods, with wonderful sensibility; and have witnessed the ceremony of cross-questioning with as much trepidation as