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So that, departing at the evening's close, She says, "She may be saved! she nothing knows!"
Poor Jane, the cunning sorceress! Now that thou wouldst, thou art no
prophetess! This morning, ill the fulness of thy heart,
Thou wast so, far beyond thine art!
Now rings the bell, nine times reverberating,
And the white daybreak, stealing up the sky,
Sees in two cottages two maidens waiting,
Queen of a day, by flatterers caressed, The one puts on her cross and crown,
Decks with a huge bouquet her breast,
And flaunting, fluttering up and down,
Looks at herself, and cannot rest. The other, blind, within her little room,
Has neither crown nor flower's perfume;
But in their stead for something gropes apart,
That in a drawer's recess doth lie, And, 'neath her bodice of bright scarlet
Convulsive clasps it to her heart.
The one, fantastic, light as air,
'Mid kisses ringing,
And joyous singing.
The other, with cold drops upon her brow,
Joins her two hands, and kneels upon the floor,
And whispers, as her brother opes the door,
"O God ! forgive me now!"
And then the orphan, young and blind,
Conducted by her brother's hand,
Towards the church,through paths
unscanned, With tranquil air, her way doth
Odors of laurel, making her faint and pale,
Round her at times exhale,
Near that castle, fair to see, Crowded with sculptures old, in every part,
Marvels of nature and of art,
And proud of its name of high
degree, A little chapel, almost bare At the base of the rock, is builded
All glorious that it lifts aloof, Above each jealous cottage roof, Its sacred summit, swept by autumn gales,
And its blackened steeple high in air, Round which the osprey screams and sails.
"Paul, lay thy noisy rattle by!" Thus Margaret said. '' Where are we?
we ascend!" "Yes ; seest thou not our journey's
Hearest not the osprey from the belfry cry?
The hideous bird, that brings ill luck, we know!
Dost thou remember when our father said,
The night we watched beside his bed,
'O daughter, I am weak and low; Take care of Paul; I feel that I am dying!'
And thou, and he, and I, all fell to crying?
Then on the roof the osprey screamed aloud;
And here they brought our father in his shroud.
There is his grave ; there stands the cross we set;
Why dost thou clasp me so, dear Margaret?
Come in! The bride will be here soon:
Thou tremblest! O my Cod! thou art going to swoon!"
She could no more, — the blind girl,
weak and weary! A voice seemed crying from that grave
"What wouldst thou do, my daughter ?" — and she started, And quick recoiled, aghast, fainthearted;
But Paul, impatient, urges evermore Her steps towards the open door;
And when, beneath her feet, the unhappy maid
Crushes the laurel near the house immortal,
And with her head, as Paul talks on again,
Touches the crown of filigrane Suspended from the low-arched portal,
No more restrained, no more afraid, She walks, as for a feast arrayed, And in the ancient chapel's sombre night
They both are lost to sight.
At length the hell,
It is broad day, with sunshine and
For soon arrives the bridal train,
In sooth, deceit maketh no mortal gay, For lo! Baptiste on this triumphant day,
Mute as an idiot, sad as yester-morning, Thinks only of the beldame's words of warning.
And Angela thinks of her cross, I wis; To be a bride is all! The pretty lisper Feels her heart swell to hear all round
her whisper, '' How beautiful! how beautiful she is!'"
But she must calm that giddy head,
For already the Mass is said; At the holy table stands the priest; The wedding ring is blessed; Baptiste receives it;
Ere on the finger of the bride he leave* it,
He must pronounce one word at least!
'T is spoken ; and sudden at the groomsman's side
"'Tis he!" a well-known voice has cried.
And while the wedding guests all hold
their breath, Opes the confessional, and the blind
"Baptiste," she said, "since thou hast wished my death,
As holy water be my blood for thee!"
And calmly in the air a knife suspended!
Doubtless her guardian angel near attended,
For anguish did its work so well,
At eve, instead of bridal verse,
"The road should mourn and be veiled
in gloom, So fair a corpse shall leave its home! Should mourn and should weep, ah,
well-away! So fair a corpse' shall pass to-day!"
A CHRISTMAS CAROL.
FROM THE NOEI BOCRGUIGKOX DE GUI
I HEAR along our street
In December ring
Shepherds at the grange,
These good people sang
Nuns in frigid cells
For want of something else,
Who by the fireside stands
THE SOXG OF HIAWATHA.
Should you ask me, whence these stories?
Whence these legends and traditions,
I should answer, I should tell you, '' From the forests and the prairies, From the great lakes of the Northland, From the land of the Ojibways, From the land of the Dacotahs, From the mountains, moors, and fenlands,
Where the heron, the Shuh-slmh-gah,
Should you ask where Nawadaha Found these songs, so wild and wayward, Found these legends and traditions,
I should answer, I should tell you,
"All the wild-fowl sang them to him,
If still further you should ask me,
"In the Vale of Tawasentha,
"And the pleasant water-courses, You could trace them through the valley, By the rushing in the Spring-time, By the alders in the Summer, By the white fog in the Autumn, By the black line in the Winter; And beside them dwelt the singer, In the vale of Tawasentha, In the green and silent valley.
"There he sang of Hiawatha, Sang the Song of Hiawatha, Sang his wondrous birth and being, How he prayed and how he fasted, How he lived, and toiled, and suffered, That the tribes of men might prosper, That he might advance his people!"
Ye who love the haunts of Nature,
Ye who love a nation's legends,
Ye whose hearts are fresh and simple,
Ye, who sometimes, in your rambles Through the green lanes of the country, AVhere the tangled barberry-hushes Hang their tufts of crimson hemes Over stone walls gray with mosses, Pause bv some neglected graveyard, For a while to muse, and ponder
I On a half-effaced inscription,
THE SONG OF HIAWATHA.
On the Mountains of the Prairie,
From his footprints flowed a river,
From the red stone of the quarry With his hand he broke a fragment, Moulded it into a pipe-head, Shaped and fashioned it with figures; From the margin of the river Took a long reed for a pipe-stem, With its dark green leaves upon it; Filled the pipe with bark of willow, With the bark of the red willow; Breathed upon the neighboring forest, Made its great boughs chafe together, Till in flame they burst and kindled; And erect upon the mountains, Gitche Manito, the mighty, Smoked the calumet, the Peace-Pipe, As a signal to the nations.
And the smoke rose slowly, slowly, Through the tranquil air of morning, First a single line of darkness, Then a denser, bluer vapor, Then a snow-white cloud unfolding, Like the tree-tops of the forest, Ever rising, rising, rising. Till it touched the top of heaven, Till it broke against the heaven, And rolled outward all around it. . From the Vale of Tawasentha,