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And silence publicly enjoin'd,
Deliver'd briefly thus his mind;
“My friends, be cautious how you treat
The subject upon which we meet;
I fear we shall have winter yet.”
A Finch, whose tongue knew no control,
With golden wing and satin poll; .
A last year's bird who ne'er had tried
What marriage meant, thus pert replied:
“Methinks the gentleman,” quoth she,
“Opposite, in the apple tree,
By his good will would keep us single,
*Till yonder heaven and earth should mingle;
Or (which is likelier to befal)
*Till death exterminate us all.
I marry without more ado;
My dear Dick Redcap, what say you?”
Dick heard ; and tweedling, ogling, bridling,
Turning short round, strutting and sideling,
Attested glad his approbation
Of an immediate conjugation.
Their sentiments so well express'd,
Influenced mightily the rest;
All pair'd, and each pair built a nest.
But though the birds were thus in haste,
The leaves came on not quite so fast;
And destiny, that sometimes bears
An aspect stern in man's affairs,
Not altogether smiled on theirs.
The wind, that late breathed gently forth,
Now shifted east, and east by north;
Bare trees and shrubs but ill, you know,
Could shelter them from rain or snow;
Stepping into their nests, they paddled,
Themselves were chill'd, their eggs were addled ;
Soon every bird and mother
Grew quarrelsome and peck'd each other;

THE RIVER, 235

Parted without the least regret,
Except that they had ever met;
And learn’d in future to be wiser,
Than to neglect a good adviser.

MORAL.
Young folks, who think themselves so wise,
That old folk's counsel they despise,
Will find when they too late repent,
Their folly prove their punishment.

THE RIVER,

RivKR River! little River:
Bright you sparkle on your way,
O'er the yellow pebbles dancing,
Through the flowers and foliage glancing,
Like a child at play.

River! River ! swelling River!
On you rush o'er rough and smooth, –
Louder, faster, brawling, leaping
Over rocks by rose-banks sweeping,
Like impetuous youth.

River ! River! brimming River!
Broad, and deep, and still as time,
Seeming still — yet still in motion,
Tending onward to the ocean,
Just like mortal prime.

River! River ! rapid River !
Swifter now you slip away;
Swift and silent as an arrow,
Through a channel dark and narrow,
Like life's closing day.

River! River! headlong River!
Down you dash into the sea;
Sea, that line hath never sounded,
Sea, that voyage hath never rounded,
Like eternity.

THE SENSIBLE ANSWER OF SOCRATES.

WHEN Socrates, the Athenian philosopher, had built himself a small house, one of the common people stepped up to him ; “And pray, sir,” said he, “what can be the reason that you, who are so great a man, should build such a little box as this for your dwelling house 2 ” “Indeed, neighbor,” replied the sage, “I shall think myself happy if I can fill even this with real friends.”

True friends are indeed great treasures, and the wise know how to prize them.

PROVERBS.

HEARts may agree, though heads differ. Since you wronged me, you never had a good thought of me. There is no better looking-glass than a true friend. After dinner, sit awhile ; After supper, walk a mile. Go to bed with the lamb, and rise with the lark. As the wind blows, you must set your sail. As love thinks no evil, so envy speaks no good. As virtue is its own reward, so vice is its own punishment.

FABLE. – PHILOSOPHER OUTDONE. 237

THE MULES AND "THE ROBBERS.
A FABLE.

Two mules, who were each of them loaded with a pack, happened to travel in company. One of them was carrying money to the public treasury, and the other sustaining the weight of a large sack, which was full of barley. The former, being proud of his burden, tossed up his head with an air, and shook the tinkling bell, which dangled upon his neck; while his partner followed him at a distance with a humble and easy pace.

On a sudden, out rushed a gang of robbers from their ambush, and in the heat of the skirmish, they wounded the mule, who had been so vain of his money, and carried off the bags, leaving the barley for the next comer. Thus plundered and crippled, while he was bewailing his cruel fate, “For my part,” said the other mule, “I am heartily glad they did not think me worthy of notice ; for I have lost nothing by their contempt, and am still as whole and sound as ever.”

THE PHILOSOPHER OUTDONE.

A LEARNEd philosopher being very busy, in his study, a little girl came to ask him for some fire. “But,” says the doctor, “you have nothing to take it in ; ” and as he was going to fetch something for the purpose, the little girl stooped down to the fireplace, and taking some cold ashes in one hand, she put live embers on them with the other. The astonished doctor threw down his books, saying, “With all my learning, I should never have found out that expedient.”

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