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Her form, so slender, was yielding

To its mountain of sorrow and care.

The biting storm that chilled his frame,

The fleecy snow that filled the air, They did not check his onward course, Nor drive his thoughts from that room so

bare. For well he knew that want was feeding

Upon her vital part; That strengthened hope and every nerve,

And that lone and anxious heart.

He'll brave the cold and driving storm,

And try what love will do
To win his father from the haunts of vice

To share their grief and woe.
Hungry and weary on he strode,

Unmindful of the street-lamps' light, Until he reached that vile abode

Where virtue sickens at the sight.

He grasped his father's nervous hand,

And saw his sunken, blood-shot eye,

SHE DIED WITH THE OLD YEAR.

195

Then begged him come, for mother's sake,

With bread ere she should die. He went with a slow and staggering tread

By the street-lamps' flickering light; As reeling, he opened a well-known door And said: “Will you trust me for bread

to-night?"

Again through the dimly lighted streets

That father went trudging home, As the night winds howled their dismal

sounds O'er stately trees and towering dome.

When they reached that dismal room,

Where no brilliant light was streaming, There that famished mother lay:

She was not dead, nor sweetly dreaming. But waiting, waiting, wearily waiting,

While the moments passed away, Shivering by the dying embers,

As on her couch of straw she lay.

As she gazed on the dying embers,
She thought of her childhood's happy

home;
Where, beneath the stately trees,

She loved each day to roam.
Of the dear old wall by the garden walk

That with ivy was o'er grown,
The constant sound of the dear old rill,

With its pure white crested foam. .

And the odor of the roses,

And the bed of violets rare,
That sent their sweetest fragrance

Through all the summer air.
Just twenty years had come and gone

Since she vowed to love but one;
And then he was a noble man-

A generous, kind and loving son

But woe unto the maddening drink

That wildly racks the brain; 'Twill crush the mother's fondest hope,

And bind her with a chain!

SHE DIED WITH THE OLD YEAR

197

That father reeled and clasped her hand,

Her face was deathly pale and fair, But on his brow was remorse and shame,

And in that vague unmeaning stare. Something had reached his callous heart,

And its hardened fountains stirred; He tried to speak, but on his tongue

Faltered and died each word.

Then burning tears, like drops of rain,

Rolled down that father's face, Where rum and the lowest haunts of vice

Had scathed and left their trace. Her vital part was hunger-bitten;

That father knew her end was near. Just as the midnight chime pealed forth,

That mother died with the old, old year!

Che Stolen Ghild.

h! take me to my home once more,

To friends and kindred, take me back;
I long to leave these savage haunts,
My heart grows

faint
upon

the track.

You took me from my mother's arms,- —

Those arms would gladly clasp me now; I feel the kiss she gave me last,

The hand that pressed my childish brow.

Long have I been within your tribe,

And marched o'er Indian trails so long; I hate the bow and scalping-knife,

I hate the savage warrior's song!

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