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Ye are changed, ye are changed! — and I see not here All whom I saw in the vanished year!
There were graceful heads, with their ringlets bright,
There were steps that flew o'er the cowslip's head, 55 As if for a banquet all earth were spread;
There were voices that rang through the sapphire sky, And had not a sound of mortality!
Are they gone? is their mirth from the mountains
Ye have looked on death since ye met me last!
I know whence the shadow comes o'er you now,
With their laughing eyes and their festal crown:
They are gone from amongst you, the young and fair,
Ye have lost the gleam of their shining hair!
But I know of a land where there falls no blight,
I shall find them there, with their eyes of light! Where Death midst the blooms of the morn may dwell,
I tarry no longer, -farewell, farewell!
The summer is coming, on soft wings borne,
For me, I depart to a brighter shore, —
Ye are marked by care, ye are mine no more;
A LEGEND OF THE NORTHLAND
AWAY, away in the Northland,
Where the hours of the day are few,
Where they harness the swift reindeer
They tell them a curious story-
Once, when the good Saint Peter
And walked about it, preaching,
He came to the door of a cottage,
Where a little woman was making cakes,
And being faint with fasting,
For the day was almost done,
He asked her, from her store of cakes,
So she made a very little cake,
She looked at it, and thought it seemed
Too large to give away.
Therefore she kneaded another,
And still a smaller one;
But it looked, when she turned it over,
Then she took a tiny scrap of dough,
And rolled and rolled it flat; And baked it thin as a wafer
But she could n't part with that.
For she said, "My cakes that seem too small When I eat of them myself,
Are yet too large to give away.'
So she put them on the shelf.
Then good Saint Peter grew angry,
And surely such a woman
Was enough to provoke a saint.
And he said, "You are far too selfish
To dwell in a human form, To have both food and shelter,
And fire to keep you warm.
"Now, you shall build as the birds do,
And shall get your scanty food
Then up she went through the chimney,
And out of the top flew a woodpecker,
For she was changed to a bird.
She had a scarlet cap on her head,
And that was left the same,
But all the rest of her clothes were burned
Black as a coal in the flame.
And every country school-boy
Has seen her in the wood;
Where she lives in the trees till this very day,
Boring and boring for food.
And this is the lesson she teaches:
Give plenty of what is given to you,
Listen to pity's call;
Don't think the little you give is great,
And the much you get is small.
Now, my little boy, remember that,
And try to be kind and good,
When you see the woodpecker's sooty dress,
And see her scarlet hood.
You may n't be changed to a bird, though you
As selfishly as you can ;
But you will be changed to a smaller thing—
A mean and selfish man.
THE LEGEND OF THE CROSSBILL
(From the German of Julius Mosen)
HENRY WADSWORTH Longfellow
ON the cross the dying Saviour
And by all the world forsaken,
Sees He how with zealous care
A little bird is striving there.
Stained with blood and never tiring,
From the cross 't would free the Saviour
Its Creator's Son release.
And the Saviour speaks in mildness:
"Blest be thou of all the good!
Bear, as token of this moment,
Marks of blood and holy rood!"