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Vultures with instinct rare,
Sail through the tainted air,
Shrieking with lust to tear
Open the wound:
Still a safe watch he keeps,
E’en while his spirit weeps-
Guarding the slaughtered heaps,
Stands the hold hound.
When thrice the moonbeams rise,
Glazed are his loving eyes;
Down, down he sinks, and dies,
Prone on the ground.
Eager for reeking food,
Swoop down the cursed brood,
Rending, with talons rude,
Master and hound.
The stately homes of England !
How beautiful they stand,
Amidst their tall ancestral trees,
O'er all the pleasant land !
The deer across their greensward bound
Through shade and sunny gleam ;
And the swan glides by them with the sound
Of some rejoicing stream.
The merry homes of England !
Around their hearths, by night,
What gladsome looks of household love
Meet in the ruddy light!
The blessed homes of England !
How softly on their bowers
Is laid the holy quietness
That breathes from Sabbath hours !
The cottage homes of England !
By thousands on her plains,
They are smiling o'er the silvery brooks,
And round the hamlet fanes.
Through glowing orchards forth they peep,
Each from its nook of leaves; And fearless there the lowly sleep,
As the bird beneath the eaves.
The free, fair homes of England !
Long, long, in hut and hall,
May hearts of native proof be reared,
To guard each hallowed wall!
And green for ever be the groves,
And bright the flowery sod,
Where first the child's glad spirit loves
Its country and its God!
Thy neighbour ? It is he whom thou
Hast power to aid and bless;
Whose aching heart and burning brow
Thy scothing hand may press.
Thy neighbour ? 'Tis the fainting poor,
Whose eye with want is dim;
Whom hunger sends from door to door ;-
Go thou and succour him.
Thy neighlour? 'Tis that weary man,
Whose years are at their brim, Bent low with sickness, cares, and pain ;
Go thou and succour him.
Thy neighbour ? 'Tis the heart bereft
Of every earthly gem;
Widow and orphan, helpless left ;-
Go thou and shelter them.
Thy neighbour ? Yonder toiling slave,
Fettered in thought and limb,
Whose hopes are all beyond the grave;--
Go thou and ransom him.
Whene'er thou meet'st a human form
Less favoured than thine own,
Remember 'tis thy neighbour worm,
Thy brother, or thy son.
Oh, pass not, pass not heedless by ;
Perhaps thou canst redeem
The breaking heart from misery ;
Go share thy lot with him.
What can a mother's heart repay,
In after years,
For watchful night and weary day
Beside the cradle passed away,
And anxious tears ?
To see her dear ones tread the earth
In life and health, and childish mirth.
What can a mother's heart repay
For later care,-
For words that heavenward point the way,
For counsel against passion's sway,
And earnest prayer ?—
To watch her little pilgrims press
Along the road to holiness.
This will a mother's heart repay,
If that loved band,
Amidst life's doubtful battle-fray,
By grace sustained, shall often say,
“Next to God's hand, All of true happiness we know, Mother, to thy dear self we owe.” Rev. W. Callert.
A BARKING sound the shepherd hears, A cry as of a dog or fox; He halts, and searches with his eye Among the scattered rocks : And now at distance can discern A stirring in a brake of fern; And instantly a dog is seen, Glancing through that covert green.
The dog is not of mountain breed;
Its motions, too, are wild and shy;
With something, as the shepherd thinks,
Unusual in its cry:
Nor is there any one in sight
All round, in hollow or on height;
Nor shout nor whistle strikes his ear-
What is the creature doing here?
It was a cove, a huge recess,
That keeps, till June, December's snow;
A lofty precipice in front,
A silent tarn below;
Far in the bosom of Helvellyn,
Remote from public road or dwelling,
Pathway, or cultivated land;
From trace of human foot or hand.
There sometimes doth a leaping fish
Send through the tarn a lonely cheer;
The crags repeat the raven's croak,
In symphony austere:
Thither the rainbow comes, the cloud
And mists that spread the flying shroud,
And sunbeams; and the sounding blast,
That if it could would hurry past-
But that enormous barrier holds it fast.
Not free from boding thoughts, a while
The shepherd stood; then makes his way
O'er rocks and stones, following the dog
As quickly as he may ;
Nor far had gone before he found
A human skeleton on the ground!
The appalled discoverer with a sigh
Looks round to learn the history.
From those abrupt and perilous rocks
The man had fallen--that place of fear!
At length upon the shepherd's mind
It breaks, and all is clear:
He instantly recalled the name,
And who he was, and whence he came:
Remembered, too, the very day
On which the traveller passed that way.
But here a wonder, for whose sake
This lamentable tale I tell;
A lasting monument of words
This wonder merits well :
The dog which still was hovering nigh,
Repeating the same timid cry,
This dog, had been, through three months' space,
A dweller in that savage place!
Yes, proof was plain that since the day
When this ill-fated traveller died,
The dog had watched about the spot,
Or by his master's side:
How nourished there through that long time,
He knows who gave that love sublime;
And gave that strength of feeling great,
Above all human estimate.