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She hastes with joyous steps and quick, (we know what
children are,) And, spying soon her father out, she shouted from afar “Oh, father, dearest father, such a plaything I have found, I never saw so fair a one on our own mountain ground.” Her father sat at table then, and drank his wine so mild, And, smiling with a parent's smile, he asks the happy child, “What struggling creature hast thou brought so carefully
to me? Thou leap'st for very joy, my pet: come, open,
let us see!” She opes her kerchief carefully, right gladly you may deem, And shows her eager sire the plough, the peasant, and the
team; And when she'd placed before his sight the new-found
pretty toy, She clasped her hands, and screamed aloud, and cried for
very joy. But her father looked quite sadly down, and shaking slow
his head, “What hast thou brought me home, my child ?—This is no
toy,” he said. “Go, take it quickly back again, and put it down below; The peasant is no plaything, girl; how couldst thou think
him so ?
“Be off! without a sigh or sob, and do my will,” he said ; “You know, without the peasant, girl, we'd none of us
have bread. 'Tis from the peasant's hardy stock the race of giants are: The peasant is no plaything, child: no! God forbid he were.”
Richardson's German Ballads.
THE INCHCAPE ROCK. No stir in the air, no stir in the sea, The ship was as still as she could be; Her sails from heaven received no motion, Her keel was steady in the ocean. Without or sign or sound of their shock, The waves flowed over the Inchcape Rock; So little they rose, so little they fell, They did not move the Inchcape Bell. The Abbot of Aberbrothok Had placed that bell on the Inchcape Rock; On a buoy in the storm it floated and swung, And over the waves its warning rung. When the rock was hid by the surge's swell, The mariners heard the warning bell; And then they knew the perilous rock, And blest the Abbot of Aberbrothok. The sun in heaven was shining gay, All things were joyful on that day; The sea-birds scream'd as they wheeld round, And there was a joyance in their sound. The buoy of the Inchcape Bell was seen A darker speck on the ocean green; Sir Ralph the Rover walked his deck, And he fixed his eye on the darker speck. He felt the cheering power of Spring,— It made him whistle, it made him sing; His heart was mirthful to excess ; But the Rover's mirth was wickedness. His
eye was on the Inchcape float: Quoth he, “My men, put out the boat, And row me to the Inchcape Rock, And I'll plague the Abbot of Aberbrothok."
The boat is lower'd, the boatmen row,
66 the breakers roar ?
THE MAN AND THE SNAKE.
ONCE on a time, as Æsop tells,
A man, in winter's iron weather,
A snake, its coils frost-bound together.
And was about to fling it by,
Still glowing in its evil eye.
E'en to that reptile most unblest,
And placed the serpent in his breast. Under his kindly bosom's glow,
Slowly the stiffened coils outdrew; The thickening blood resumed its flow,
The snaky instincts waked anew. The man was glad to feel awake,
The crawling life within his vest; For to have harbored e'en a snake
Is pleasure in a gen'rous breast.
Sudden he stops, with shriek and start
Then falls a corpse, all swollen and black ! The snake's fell tooth had pierced the heart, Whose warmth to life had brought it back.
* Fells, steep, barren hills.
THE LINNET CHOIR.
A LINNET choir sang in a chestnut crown,
A hundred, perhaps, or more, —
And entered a cottage door ;
As they piped in the yellow tree:“ I love my sweet little lady-bird,
And I know that she loves me: Chip, chip, cherry chip, cherry, cherry, cherry chip!' We linnets are a merry band, A happy company." It chanced a poet passed that way,
With a quick and merry thought,
His ear their language caught :
“What heavenly harmony ! I shall steal that