Page images
PDF
EPUB

All vanished is the brief eclipse!
Hark! to the sound of wedded lips,
And words of tender warmth that start
From out the husband** grateful heart!
O! well he knows how vain is life,
Unsweetened by the Farmer's Wife.

But lo! the height of pure delight

Comes with the evening's stainless joys, When by the hearthstone spaces bright

Blend the glad tones of girls and boys; Their voices rise in gleeful swells, Their laughter rings like eltin bells, Till with a look 'twixt smile and frown The mother lays her infant down, And at her firm, uplifted hand, There's silence 'mid the jovial band;

Her signal stills their harmless strife —
Love crowns with law the Farmer's Wife!

Ye dames in proud, palatial halls —
Of lavish wiles and jeweled dress,
On whom, perchance, no infant calls
(For barren oft Yol K loveliness) —
Turn hitherward those languid eyes
And for a moment's space be wise;
Your sister 'mid the country dew-
Is three times nearer Heaven than you,
And where the palms of Eden stir.
Dream not that ye shall stand by her,
Though in your false, bewildering life.
Your folly scorned the Farmer's Wife!

Pall Hamilton Iiayne.

THE PUMPKIN.

GREENLY and fair in the lands of the sun,
The vine of the gourd and the rich melon run,
And the rock and the tree and the cottage enfold,
With broad leaves all greenness and blossoms all
gold,

Like that which o'er Nineveh's prophet once grew,
While he waited to know that his warning was true,
And longed for the storm-cloud, and listened in vain
For the rush of the whirlwind and red fire-rain.

On the banks of the Xenil, the dark Spanish maiden
Comes up with the fruit of the tangled vine laden;
And the Creole of Cuba laughs out to behold
Through orange-leaves shining the broad spheres of
gold;

Yet with dearer delight from his home in the North,
On the fields of his harvest the Yankee looks forth,
Where crook-necks are coiling and yellow fruit shines,
And the sun of September melts down on his vines.

Ah! on Thanksgiving Day. when from East and from West,

From North and from South come the pilgrim and guest.

When the grey-haired New-Englander sees round his board

The old broken links of affection restored,

When the care-wearied man seeks his mother once more,

And the worn matron smiles where the girl smiled before,

What moistens the lip and what brightens the eye? What calls back the past, like the rich pumpkin-pie?

O, fruit loved of boyhood! the old days recalling; When wood-grapes were purpling and brown nuts

were falling! When wild, ugly faces we carved in its skin. Glaring out through the dark with a candle within! When we laughed round the corn-heap, with hearts

all in tune,

Our chair a broad pumpkin, our lantern the moon.

Telling tales of the fairy who traveled like steam

In a pumpkin-shell coach, with two rats for her team!

Then thanks for thy present!— none sweeter or better
E'er smoked from an oven or circled a platter!
Fairer hands never wrought at a pastry more fine,
Brighter eyes never watched o'er its baking than thine I
And the prayer, which my mouth is too full to express,
Swells my heart that thy shadow may never be less,
That the days of thy lot may be lengthened below,
And the fame of thy worth like a pumpkin-vine grow,
And thy life be as sweet, and its last sunset sky
Golden-tinted and fair as thy own pumpkin-pie!

John Greenleaf Whittier.

HEAR the wood-thrush piping one mellow descant more.

And scent the flowers that blow when the heat of day is o'er.

iATH not old custom made this life more sweet Than that of painted pomp? Are not these woods

More free from perils than the envious court?

[merged small][graphic][merged small][merged small][graphic][merged small][merged small]

Six white eggs on a bed of hay,

Flecked with purple, a pretty sight! There as the mother sits all day, .Robert is singing with all his might: Bob-o'-link, bob-o'-link, Spink, spank, spink; Nice good wife, that never goes out, Keeping house while I frolic about.

Chee, ehee, chee.

Soon as the little ones chip the shell

Six wide mouths are open for food; Robert of Lincoln bestirs him well, Gathering seed for the hungry brood. Bob-o'-link. bob-o'-link, Spink, spank, spink; This new life is likely to be Hard for a gay young fellow like me.

Chee, chee, ehee.

Robert of Lincoln at length is mad(;

Sober with work, and silent with care;
Off is his holiday garment laid,
Half forgotten that merry air,
Bob-o'-link, bob-o'-link,
Spink, spank, spink;
Nobody knows but my mate and I
Where our uest aud our nestlings lie.

Chee, ehee, chee.

Summer wanes; the children are grown;

Fun and frolic no more he knows;
Robert of Lincoln 's a humdrum crone;
Off he flies, and we sing as he goes:
Bob-o'-link, bob-o'-link,
Spink, spank, spink;
When you can pipe that merry old strain,
Robert of Lincoln, c»me back again.

Chee, chee, chee.
William Cullen Bryant.

ON THE BANKS OF THE TENNESSEE.

SIT by the open window

And look to the hills away, Over beautiful undulations

That glow with the flowers of May — And as the lights and the shadows

With the passing moments change, C Hues many a scene of beauty

Within my vision's range — But there is not one among them

That is half so dear to me, As an old log-cabin I think of

On the banks of the Tennessee.

Now up from the rolling meadows,
And down from the hill-tops now,

Fresh breezes steal in at my window,
And sweetly fan my brow —

And the sounds that they gather and bring me,

From rivulet, and meadow, and hill.
Come in with a touching cadence.

And my throbbing bosom fill —
But the dearest thoughts thus wakened,

And in tears brought back to me.
Cluster round that old log-cabin

On the banks of the Tennessee.

To many a fond remembrance

My thoughts are backward cast, As I sit by the open window

And recall the faded past —
For all along the windings

Of the ever-moving years.
Lie wrecks of hope and of purpose

That I now behold through tears—

[merged small][graphic][merged small]

SUMMER LONGINGS.

Hopes and flowers that, dead or dying.

All the winter lay.
Ah! my heart is sore with sighing,
Sighing for the May.

Ah! my heart is pained with throbbing.
Throbbing for the May,—
Throbbing for the seaside billows.
Or the water-wooing willows;
Where, in laughing and in sobbing,

Glide the streams away.
Ah! my heart, my heart is throbbing,
Throbbing for the May.

Waiting sad, dejected, weary,
Waiting for the May:
Spring goes by with wasted warnings.—
Moonlit evenings, sunbright mornings.—
Summer comes, yet dark and dreary

Life still ebbs away;
Man is ever weary, weary,
Waitiug for the May!

Denis Flokence Mac-ca.i:tiiy.

FARM LIFE.

GRICULTURE is the greatest among the arts, for it is first in supplying our necessities. It is the mother and nurse of all other arts. It favors and strengthens population; it creates and maintains manufactures, gives employment to navigation and materials to commerce. It animates every species of industry, and opens to nations the surest channels of opulence. It is also the strongest bond of well regulated society, the surest basis of internal peace, the natural associate of good morals.

We ought to count among the benefits of agriculture the charm which the practice of it communicates to a country life. That charm which has made the country, in our own view, the retreat of the hero, the asylum of the sage, and the temple of the historic muse. The strong desire, the longing after the country, with which we find the bulk of mankind to be penetrated, points to it as the chosen abode of sublunary bliss. The sweet occupations of culture with her varied products and attendant enjoyments are, at least, a relief from the stifling atmosphere of the city, the monotony of subdivided employments, the anxious uncertainty of commerce, the vexations of ambition so often disappointed, of self-love so often mortified, of factitious pleasures and unsubstantial vanities.

"We deplore the disposition of young men to <?et away from their farm homes to our larger cities, where they are subject to difficulties and temptations, which, but too often, they fail to overcome.

Depend upon it, if you would hold your sons and brothers back from roaming

[graphic]

! my heart is weary waiting,
Waiting for the May,—
Waitiug for the pleasant rambles
Where the fragrant hawthorn-brambles,
With the woodbine alternating,

Scent the dewy way.
Ah! my heart is weary waiting,
Waiting for the May.

Ah! my heart is sick with longing,
Longing for the May,—
Longing to escape from study.
To the young face fair and ruddy,
And the thousand charms belonging

To the summer's day.
Ah! my heart is sick with longing.
Longing for the May.

Ah! my heart is sore with sighing,
Sighing for the May,—
Sighing for their sure returning,
When the summer beams are burning,

away into the perilous centres, you must steadily make three attempts—to abate the taskwork of farming, to raise maximum crops and profits, and to surround your work with the exhilaration of intellectual progress. You must elevate the whole spirit of your vocation for your vocation's sake, till no other can outstrip it in what most adorns and strengthens a civilized state.

[graphic][graphic][merged small][merged small][merged small]
« PreviousContinue »