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The boy who, when walking and musing,
And thrust his dear hand in my own; Were these not as the rays that are twinkling
On the waves of some clear, haunted stream? Were ye not as the stars that are sprinkling Night's firmament, dark without them?
TO A CHILD.
DEAR CHILD! whom sleep can hardly tame,
With bright, round cheek, amid whose glow
And brow so calm, a home for thought
Though wise indeed thou seemest not
That shout proclaims the undoubting mind,
And yet, dear Child! within thee lives,
Thus what thou art foreshows to me
And while amid thy garlands blow
A LAY OF FAIRY LAND.
It is upon the Sabbath-day, at rising of the sun,
From eagle and from raven to guard her little flock,
Her widow mother wept to hear her whispered prayer so sweet,
Then through the silence blessed the sound of her soft parting feet;
And thought, "while thou art praising God amid the hills so calm,
Far off this broken voice, my child! will join thy morning psalm."
So down upon her rushy couch her moistened cheek she laid,
And away into the morning hush is flown her highland
In heaven the stars are all bedimmed, but in its dewy mirth
A star more beautiful than they is shining on the earth.
-In the deep mountain hollow the dreamy day is done, For close the peace of Sabbath brings the rise and set of
The mother through her lowly door looks forth unto the
Yet the shadow of the shepherdess is nowhere to be seen.
Within her loving bosom stirs one faint throb of fear "O! why so late!" a footstep- and she knows her child is near;
So out into the evening the gladdened mother goes, And between her and the crimson light her daughter's beauty glows.
The heather balm is fragrant
the heather bloom is fair, But 'tis neither heather balm nor bloom that wreathes round Mhairi's hair;
Round her white brows so innocent, and her blue quiet
That look out bright, in smiling light, beneath the flowery dyes.
These flowers, by far too beautiful among our hills to grow, These gem-crowned stalks, too tender to bear one flake of
Not all the glens of Caledon could yield so bright a band, That in its lustre breathes and blooms of some warm foreign land.
"The hawk hath long been sleeping upon the pillar-stone. And what hath kept my Mhairi in the woodlands all alone?
And where got she those lovely flowers mine old eyes dimly see?
Where'er they grew it must have been upon a lovely tree."
"Sit down beneath our elder-shade, and I my tale will tell"
And speaking, on her mother's lap the wondrous chaplet fell;
It seemed as if its blissful breath did her worn heart
Till the faded eyes of age did beam as they had beamed of yore.
"The day was something dim, but the gracious sunshine fell
On me, and on our sheep and lambs, and our own little dell;
Some lay down in the warmth and some began to feed, And I took out the Holy Book, and thereupon did read.
"And while that I was reading of him who for us died, And blood and water shed for us from out his blessed side, An angel's voice above my head came singing o'er and o'er,
In Abernethy wood it sank, now rose in dark Glenmore.
"Mid lonely hills on Sabbath, all by myself to hear