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A broad stream, smooth with deep-grassed fields,
Through rushy turnings winding slow-
A dam where stirless waters sleep
Till shot on the mossed wheel below-
A dusty mill whose shadows fall
On the stayed waters, white o'er all.
A vine-climbed cottage redly-tiled,
Deep-nooked within an orchard's green,
Past which a white road winds away
That hedgerow elms from summer screen-
A busy wheel's near sound that tells
Within the thriving miller dwells.
A cottage parlour neatly gay
With little comforts brightened round,
Where simple ornaments that speak
Of more than country taste abound;
Where bookcase and piano well
Of more than village polish tell.
A bluff blunt miller, well to do,
Of broad loud laugh—not hard to please
A kindly housewife keen and sage,
And busy as her very

bees-
A bright-eyed daughter- mirth and health-
Their pride-their wealth above all wealth.
A tripping fair light-hearted girl
Nor yet the ripened woman quite,
Whose cheerful mirth and thoughtful love
Light up the cottage with delight,
And with a thousand gentle ways
With pleasure brim her parents' days.
A titled slip of lordly blood,
A few weeks' lounger at the Hall
To gain new zest for palled delights
And squandered waste of health recall-
An angler in the milldam's water-
A chatter with the miller's daughter.

A meeting 'neath a summer's nightSoft smiles-low words-impassioned sighs The trembling clasp of meeting handsThe hot gaze met with downcast eyesFoul perjuries that pollute the air With burning hopes and doubts heard there. A thin pale face where Autumn sees No more the smiles that lit the SpringA foot less light upon the stairA low voice heard no more to singOne now that lost to all things sits, Now starts to overmirth by fits. Dear tongues that ask a gasping girl Of what to utter were to killLooks that she feels upon her fixedEyes that with tears pursue her stillCare in the old accustomed place Of mirth upon her father's face. A dark small whitely-curtained roomA form flung on the unopened bedQuick sobs that quiver through the gloomTears rained from hot eyes swoln and redAnd words that through their wild despair Still strive to shape themselves to prayer. A winter midnight's starry gloomA pausing tread so light that steals Across the landing-down the stairsThat scarce a creak a step reveals A stifled sob a bolt undrawne A form-low words—a daughter gone. A fresh-turfed narrow hoop-bound grave Heaping a country churchyard's green, On whose white headstone newly carved The mill's old master's name is seenThe wayside mill's, that bears no more The well-known name so long it bore. A stooping woman scarcely old, Yet with the feeble walk of age, The dull faint sense of whose blank mind No thing around her can engage; Yet who, when into speech beguiled, Will mutter of some absent child.

C 2

A costly-furnished west-end room,
Whose mirrors--pictures—all things show
A stintless and abounding wealth-
An easeful luxury few can know-
A flaunting thing its glare within,
A thing of shame, remorse,

and sin.
A noise of quarrel-keen reproach
Fronted with taunt-loud oath and curse
Heaped out with such vile store of scorn
As hate in vain might seek for worse-
Meek pleadings stricken to a close
With, shame to manhood, brutal blows.
A thing that once was woman, white,
Thin—haggard-hollowed-eyed and wan-
A horror that the shuddering eye
Starts back aghast from resting on;
Whose only joy now left is drink,
Whose fire burns out the power to think.
A bridge all winter-keen with gusts,
On whose cold pathways lies the night,
Stony and desolate and dark,
Save round the gas-lamps' flickering light ;
And swept by drifts of icy sleet,
That numb each houseless wretch they meet.
A wintry river, broad and black,
That through dark arches slides along,
Ringed where the gas-lights on it play
With coiling eddies swirling strong,
That far below the dizzy height
Of the dark bridge swim through the night.
A crouching form that through the gloom
Paces its stones a hundred times,
That pausing-glancing keenly round,
The dark high balustrade upclimbs-
A plunge-a shriek—from all its woes
A weary soul hath calm repose.
A long bright suite of stately rooms,
Where to soft music's changeful swell
Keeps time the beat of falling feet,
And all things but of pleasure tell,
Where partner gay of noblest hands
The suicide's forsaker stands.

W. C. BENNETT. Osborne Place, Blackheath.

21

THE SMALL SINS OF LONDON.

BY PAUL BELL.

• Would you know why I like London so much ? - Why, if the world must consist of so many fools as it does, I choose to take them in the gross, and not made into separate pills, as they are prepared in the Country !"Horace Walpole.

“ London with the many sins ! ”—thus was our Babylon the Great lovingly apostrophised, by that most constant of Babylonians, the genial and quaint Elia : every offence having upon “gentle Charles " the effect which “Jess Macfarlane's” ignorance produced upon the Celadon who indited that immortal song in her praise, in which said he,

“ I took it in my head To write my Love a letter,

But, alas ! she cannot read,

And I love her all the better ! If our metropolis were like one of the celestial cities which Mr. Martin used to design, so fearlessly—think you, sir, we should be half as fond of it as we are ? Were Whittington's town filled with angels, or even with mortals as cherubic as the Pastor of Penscellwood, or Lord George Good-manners, or the Exeter Hall Lion of the Season- -or dear Miss Lind, who * is to resuscitate the precarious state of the Drama, (as Mr. Bunn promised to do before her) what would become of the Beadles, whose business it is to keep everything in order and who make their livelihood by “arranging " its abuses ? What would Martyrs do for lack of persecution ?-or Jokers, with nothing to laugh at ?—what the Lord Mayor and the Magistrates, with no criminals to admonish : no young whipper-snappers, who pass themselves off as Dukes, to court young French Ladies who pass themselves off as de Villars-es-no sellers of stale fish nor criers of green-peas at

* I beg to observe, that it is not I, who make this comfortable promise ; but a Serious Reviewer, who has just written the Lady's life: wherein he tells us that no English women will go to plays because they are wicked, and everybody concerned in them vicious and defiled ; and sets up the Swedislı young lady as high as Mother Anne among the Shakers—(to state the apothcosis mercifully)

*

wrong times of the

year,
when 66

green means poison in those who sell

, and folly in those who buy—no Managers that jockey their Actors out of half their salaries—no A's, B's, or C's, who give l's; O's, or U's black eyes, by way of a finish to Cremorne or Casino pleasures ? Fancy our Household Blues—the Police, turned off, because of such a millennial state of matters !-Fancy our Chadwicks and Southwood Smiths with no more evil odours to hunt into the Limbo of bad smells !-No, sir, the Transatlantic City of the Pennguins, which“ perfect peace pervades," and whose houses (we happen to know from Americans who may be trusted) are never burnt down by mobs, and other like playful, popular excesses are forbidden,-has always appeared to me, in description, a very lifeless place. Let us, then, make much of the Small Sins of London !-such of us, at least, Sir, as can write ; or find readers. I propose to myself dealing with them, in this and subsequent papers, in the handsomest manner possible : steering equally clear of that spirit of Excommunication which may befit a Bennett, but not a Bell—and of that latitudinarianism, which lets everything pass, with Uncle Foozle's epicurean appeal, “What does it matter?'

Let no one be afraid, however, that in opening a Small-SinTrade, I am going to follow the fashions of the day-French or English. I leave to M. Eugene Sue, “ The Seven Deadlies,” being assured that he will not leave them with the shortest : also, that there will be no lack of zealous translators, who will show them up in every respectable English house, caged in all their ugly nakedness, for our Good Wives and Children to look at !—I leave to such eloquent Coroners as Mr. Baker, with their wonderful knack of moralizing on relationships which never existed, all tipsy miscreants who are thought to have poisoned their mothers--I leave to the detection of the Electrical Telegraph, all persons who elope with goods, money, or Lady Adelas- I leave to the charity of the City Article of the Daily Press, all the omissions of the Bulls and commissions of the Bears—the embezzlements of Mark Lane, and the sharp practices of Threadneedle Street. Let Bailiffs, proper or improper, look to the usurers-the

and those who squeeze the same ! I am, once for all, not going to

spongers ;

* I allude to the Reverend Gentleman of Knightsbridge who looks out for Curates on the way to Rome, and who preaches sermons against them, and Papistically excommunicates them, so soon as they know their own minds better than his; and get there. P. B.

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