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“What ails thee, young one what? why pull so at thy cord? -

Is it not well with thee ? well both for bed and board 2

Thy plot of grass is soft, and green as grass can be ;

Rest, little, young one, rest; what is 't that aileth thee ?

“What is it thou wouldst seek? what is wanting to thy heart?

Thy limbs are they not strong? and beautiful thou art.

This grass is tender grass; these flowers they have no peers,

And that green corn all day long is rustling in thy ears

“If the sun be shining hot, do but stretch thy woollen chain,

This birch is standing by, its covert thou canst gain ;

For rain and mountain storms — the like thou need'st not fear—

The rain and storm are things that scarcely can come here.

“Rest, little, young one, rest; thou hast forgot the da

When #y father found thee first, in places far away;

Many flocks were on the hills, but thou wert owned by none, .

And thy mother from thy side forevermore was gone.

“He took thee in his arms, and in pity brought thee home; . .

O blessed day for thee! then whither wouldst thou roam 2

60 THE PET LAMIB.

A faithful nurse thou hast, the dam that did thee year. Upon the mountain-tops no kinder could have been.

“Thou knowest that twice a day I have brought thee in this can

Fresh water from the brook, as clear as ever ran;

And twice in the day, when the ground is wet with dew,

I bring thee draughts of milk, warm milk it is, and Ile W.

“Thy limbs will shortly be twice as stout as they are now ;

Then I'll yoke thee to my cart, like a pony in the plough ;

My playmate thou shalt be; and when the wind is cold

Our hearth shall be thy bed, our house shall be thy fold.

“Alas! the mountain-tops that look so green and fair, I've heard of fearful winds and darkness that come there; The little brooks that seem all pastime and all play, When they are angry roar like lions for their prey.

“Here thou need'st not dread the raven in the sky;

Night and day thou art safe — our cottage is hard by.

Why bleat so after me? why pull so at thy chain 2

Sleep—and at break of day I will come to thee again.”

As homeward through the lane I went, with lazy feet, This song to myself did I oftentimes repeat;

And it seemed, as I retraced the ballad line by line, That but half of it was hers, and one half of it was II) IQ62,

Again, and once again, did I repeat the song: “Nay,” said I, “more than half to the damsel must belong, For she looked with such a look, and she spoke with such a tone, That I almost received her heart into my own.”

THE LITTLE BLACK BOY. — Blake.

My mother bore me in the southern wild,
And I am black, but, O, my soul is white
White as an angel is the English child,
But I am black, as if bereaved of light.

My mother taught me underneath a tree,
And, sitting down before the heat of day,
She took me on her lap and kisséd me,
And, pointing to the east, began to say: —

“Look on the rising Sun, -there God does live,
And gives his light, and gives his heat away;
And flowers, and trees, and beasts, and men, receive
Comfort in morning, joy in the noonday.

“And we are put on earth a little space,
That we may learn to bear the beams of love;
And these black bodies and this sunburnt face
Are but a cloud, and like a shady grove.

62 THE SPARTAN BOY,

“For when our souls have learnt the heat to bear, The clouds will vanish, we shall hear his voice, Saying, ‘Come from the grove, my love and care, And round my golden tent like lambs rejoice.’”

Thus did my mother say, and kisséd me;
And thus say I to little English boy—
When I from black and he from white cloud free,
And round the tent of God like lambs we joy;

I’ll shade him from the heat till he can bear
To lean with joy upon our Father's knee;
And then I’ll stand and stroke his silver hair,
And be like him, and he will then love me.

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WHEN I the memory repeat
Of the heroic actions great,
Which, in contempt of pain and death,
Were done by men who drew their breath
In ages past, I find no deed
That can in fortitude exceed
The noble boy, in Sparta bred,
Who in the temple ministered.
By the sacrifice he stands,
The lighted incense in his hands;
Through the smoking censer's lid
Dropped a burning coal, which slid
Into his sleeve, and passed in
Between the folds, e'en to the skin.
Dire was the pain which then he proved,
But not for this his sleeve he moved.

Or would the scorching ember shake
Out from the folds, lest it should make
Any confusion, or excite
Disturbance at the sacred rite,
But close he kept the burning coal,
Till it eat itself a hole
In his flesh. The standers-by
Saw no sign, and heard no cry.
All this he did in noble scorn,
And for he was a Spartan born.
Young student who this story readest,
And with the same thy thoughts now feedest,
Thy weaker nerves might thee forbid
To do the thing the Spartan did ;
Thy feebler heart could not sustain
Such dire extremity of pain.
But in this story thou mayst see
That may useful prove to thee.
By this example thou wilt find,
That to the ingenuous mind
Shame can greater anguish bring
Than the body's suffering;
That pain is not the worst of ills, —
Not when it the body kills;
That in fair religion's cause
For thy country, or the laws,
When occasion dire shall offer,
'T is reproachful not to suffer.

-O

MY BIRTHDAY. — Miss Lamb.

A Dozen years since, in this house what commotion,
What bustle, what stir, and what joyful ado!
Every soul in the family at my devotion,
When into the world I came, twelve years ago.

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