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To watch the flowing darkness,

The bank is high and steep; One pause - he staggers forward,

And plunges in the deep.

She strives to pierce the blackness,

And looser throws the rein; Her steed must breast the waters

That dash above his mane. How gallantly, how nobly,

He struggles through the foam, And see — in the far distance

Shine out the lights of home!

Up the steep banks he bears her,

And now, they rush again Towards the heights of Bregenz,

That tower above the plain. They reach the gate of Bregenz,

Just as the midnight rings, And out come serf and soldier

To meet the news she brings.

Bregenz is saved! ere daylight

Her battlements are manned; Defiance greets the army

That marches on the land. And if to deeds heroic

Should endless fame be paid, Bregenz does well to honor

The noble Tyrol maid.

Three hundred years are vanished,

And yet upon the hill
An old stone gateway rises,

To do her honor still.
And there, when Bregenz women,

Sit spinning in the shade, They see in quaint old carving

The Charger and the Maid.

And when, to guard old Bregenz,

By gateway, street, and tower, The warder paces all night long

And calls each passing hour;

“Nine,” « ten,” “ eleven,” he cries aloud,

And then (O crown of Fame !)
When midnight pauses in the skies,

He calls the maiden's name!

A WOMAN'S QUESTION. BEFORE I trust my Fate to thee,

Or place my hand in thine,
Before I let thy Future give

Color and form to mine,
Before I peril all for thee, question thy soul to-night for me.

I break all slighter bonds, nor feel

A shadow of regret:
Is there one link within the Past

That holds thy spirit yet?
Or is thy Faith as clear and free as that which I can pledge to thee ?

Does there within thy dimmest dreams

A possible future shine,
Wherein thy life could henceforth breathe,

Untouched, unshared by mine?
If so, at any pain or cost, 0, tell me before all is lost.

Look deeper still. If thou canst feel

Within thy inmost soul,
That thou hast kept a portion back,

While I have staked the whole;
Let no false pity spare the blow, but in true mercy tell me so.

Is there within thy heart a need

That mine cannot fulfil ? One chord that any other hand

Could better wake or still ? Speak now — lest at some future day my whole life wither and


Lives there within thy nature hid

The demon-spirit Change, Shedding a passing glory still

On all things new and strange ? — It may not be thy fault alone – but shield my heart against thy


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Couldst thou withdraw thy hand one day

And answer to my claim,
That Fate, and that to-day's mistake

Not thou — had been to blame?
Some soothe their conscience thus; but thou wilt surely warn and

save me now.

Nay, answer not, - I dare not hear,

The words would come too late; Yet I would spare thee all remorse,

So, comfort thee, my Fate — Whatever on my heart may fall — remember I would risk it all I

" What is Life, father?

“A Battle, my child,
Where the strongest lance may fail
Where the wariest eyes may be beguiled,

And the stoutest heart may quail.
Where the foes are gathered on every hand,

And rest not day or night,
And the feeble little ones must stand

In the thickest of the fight.”

“What is Death, father?”

“ The rest, my child,
When the strife and toil are o'er;
The angel of God, who, calm and mild,

Says we need fight no more;
Who, driving away the demon band,

Bids the din of the battle cease;
Takes banner and spear from our failing hand,

And proclaims an eternal peace.”

“Let me die, father! I tremble, and fear

To yield in that terrible strife!”

“ The crown must be won for Heaven, dear,

In the battle-field of life;
My child, though thy foes are strong and tried,

He loveth the weak and small;
The angels of heaven are on thy side,

And God is over all !”

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