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In the English tongue it had no name,
And thus it sung one twilight hour,
And was built in the nutmeg tree,
That sprung when the very world was made,
In an Indian isle beyond the sea. “There were four of us in the little nest,
And under our mother's wings we lay; And the father, the nutmeg leaves among, To the rising moon he sat and sung
For he sung both night and day. " And oh, he sung so sweetly,
The very winds were hushed !
That like wild waters gushed.
To hear it had a great delight, All but the wild wolf-cat, that prowls
To seek his prey at night. “The wild wolf-cat of the mountains old,
He stole to that tree of ours All silently he stole at night,
Like the green snake 'mong the flowers. “ His eyes were like two dismal fires,
His back was dusky grey ;
Then bounded with him away!
“Ah me! and I felt our mother's heart,
As it beat in awful fear,
But the basilisk-snake had been woe to hear.
He spared her not for her cry; And the silence of death came down on the woods
That had rung with her agony. “ And there we lay, four lonely ones !
Thai live-long day, and pined, and pined; And dismally through the forest-trees
Went by the moaning wind. “We watched the dreary stars come out,
And the pitiless moon come up the sky, And many a dreadtul sound we heard —
The serpent's hiss and the jackal's cry, And then a hush of downy wings
The nutmeg tree went by.
For a long, long hour we heard ;
Of the cruel dragon-bird !
In the light of the morning sun,
And left but me, the lonely one!
And I was feeble as could be! And next the arrowy lightning came,
And smote our nutmeg tree.
And I had soon been dead of cold,
Within a little cage of gold.
A gentle maid and beautiful; And all day long to me she sung, And all around my cage she hung
The large white-lily fresh and cool. “ And so I lived, - in joy I lived ;
And wben my wings were strong,
For the Bramin doth no creature wrong. “But I could not leave that kind old man
I could not leave that maiden bright:
And me she called her soul's delight,
• Wild was the cry the father gave,
Till the midnight forest rang ; And Oh!' said the kindly hunters then, • Some sa vage creature, from its den Hath pounced upon that gentle bird,
And seized it as it sang!' “All wearily passed that woful night
With our poor mother's wail; And we watched, from out our little nest, The great round moon go down to rest,
And the little stars grow pale.
“ And then I felt our mother's heart
Flutter, as in a wild surprise ;
The basilisk-snake, with its stony eyes. " It lay on the bough like a bamboo rod,
All freckled and barred with green and brown; And the terrible light of its freezing eyes
Through the nutmeg boughs came down. " And lithely towards the little nest
It slid, and nearer it drew,
Mong the nutmeg leaves it threw.
“But bloody war was in the land;
The old man and the maid were slain; The precious things were borne away A ruined heap the temple lay,
And I among the spoil was ta'en. * They said I was an idol bird,
That I had been enshrined there, And that the people worshipped me,
And that my gentle maiden fair Was priestess to the sea-green bird ! "T was false !-yet thus they all averred, And in the city I was sold For a great price in counted gold. Thy merchant-faiher purchased me, And I was borne across the sea; Thou know'st the rest - I am not sad ; With thee, sweet maiden, all are glad!"
In Athens dwelt a long, long time,
Which we so long to know.
He should go to Palestine,
With the Bible, line by line.
Beneath the Cedar's shade;
And by the Jordan strayed.
Lay like a desert heap,
The bright, green lizards creep!
Through flowery Hindostan; To the Western World ; to the Southern Cape, Where dwell the zebra and the ape,
Had gone this pleasant man.
THE CHILDREN'S WISH.
What tales he would tell on winter nights!
of Indian hunters grim, As they sit in the pine-bark wigwam's bound, While the hungry wolf is barking round,
In the midnight forest dim.
Or how they meet by the council fire,
Wearing the hen-hawk's feather, To hear some famous Sagum's “talk," To see them bury the tomahawk,
And smoke the pipe together.
Or of the bloody Indian wars,
When 'neath each foresl-tree Was done some fell deed of affright, And the war-whoop rang at dead of night,
Through the wild woods dismally.
Ou for an old, grey traveller,
By our winter fire to be,
Which we can never see!
Covered with frost and snow, Where, not the hardy fir can bear The bitter cold of that northern air,
'Mong the dwarfish Esquimaux! Or where, on the high and snowy ridge
Of the Dofrine mountains cold, The patient rein-deer draws the sledge, With rattling hoofs, along the ledge
of mountains wild and old! Or, if that ancient traveller
Had gone o'er the hills of Spain, Of other scenes he would proudly speak, Than icy seas and mountains bleak;
And a weary way of pain. He would tell of green and sunny vales,
Thick woods and waters clear, Of singing birds, and summer skies, And peasant girls with merry eyes,
And the dark-browed muleteer!
And in St. Peter's stood,
Of Rome was great and good!
The bright blue Grecian sea, 'Mong isles where the white-lily grows, And the gum-cistus and the rose,
The bay and olive tree !
The pleasant breezes blow;
He would tell of dim and savage coasts,
Of shipwrecks dark and dread;
And more than we have read !
With his wise and travelled look,
Like a glorious picture book!
THE ENGLISH MOTHER
An English matron sate at eve
Beneath the stately free That grew before her husband's hall, With her young son at her knee:
And “Not unworthy of my sires,
Shall be my manhood years !". Said he, in a proud, but artless tone,
And his mother kissed his brow, And said, “ I trust in God that none Of thy noble sires in the ages gone,
Had a nobler son than thou!"
green and ancient were the woods
Adorned their stately dome :
Its holy form displayed,
Their noble dead were laid.
To his mother, as she told of the proud race from whom he sprung,
And their achievements old.
Is simply • Trust in God,'
Within its halls have trod.
Has reddened many a field,
Are blazoned on thy shield ;
All soiled and torn and red,
Above the warrior dead;
And plumed helm and sword,
Within thy home are stored.
Their blood is in thy veins,
But more for thee remains.
Of persecution's scathe,
Maintained their righteous faith.
Nor e'er belie their trust,
He raised them from the dust.
When honours gird us round,
Js often weakest found ;
'Mid darkness and dismay,
When fear has passed away. The hour of chiefest danger now
Is nigh — so heaven thee guide :Prosperity will try thee, boy,
As ne'er thy sires were tried ! And oh, unworthy of thy sires,
Not here couldst thou find rest; Thou might'st not stand beneath these trees,
Were thine a guilty breast ;
This green and stately tree,
Would speak reproach to thee !"
- From the woods and the summer fields he is gone,
With his merry laugh and his sunny brow! The garden looks dim and the house is lone,
Where, dearest mother, is he wandering now ?" “He is gone in a brighter home to dwell,
With beautiful creatures all love and joy, Where death comes not, and no sad farewell
With its parting tone can his bliss alloy.
Beneath the light of more radiant skies,
Than in the sweet summer e'er met thine eyes. “Thou wilt meet him no more in the fields of earth
For the pleasant days of his life are o'er, And the joyful peals of his laughing mirth
Will ring from our evening hearth no more. Thou wilt see him no more as he used to be;
Thou wilt sleep by his side no more at night, Nor with thee again will he bend the knee,
And his evening-prayer with thine unite !" “ Mother, his cheeks are cold and pale,
His eyes are closed, yet he does not sleep, For he wakens not at my earnest call ;
Is it death, dear mother,--that rest so deep?" “My child, his sleep is the sleep of death;
Yet we may not deem it a darkened lot, And his spirit, more pure than the breezes' breath,
May be wandering near, though we know it not! And wish him not back, thou lonely child,
Though we miss his love, and his pleasant voice, Thou wilt soon to thy loss be reconciled,
And again in the summer-woods rejoice. “ He dwells where the fields can never fade,
Where night comes not, nor day is dim; Where the glory of God is the sun, and the shade
Is the shadowing wing of the cherubim. And oh! in yon bright and happy land,
Thou again mayst his sunny beauty see, And hear his voice, 'mid a joyful band,
From the shades of death as it welcomes thee!"
A POETICAL CHAPTER ON TAILS. ONE evening three boys did their father assail, With “ tell us a tale, papa, tell us a tale!" “ A tale ?" said their father, “ Oh yes! you shall see, That a tale of all tails it this evening shall be ;
Again the boy looked in her face,
His bright eyes dimmed with tears,
A tale having reference to all tails whatever, And the handsomest ladies I often have heard,
Give a monstrous price for the tail of this bird ; First the tail of a cat,---now this tail can express Then the sweet bird of Paradise—don't you rememAll passions, all humours, than language no less." ber "Oh, you ’re joking, papa," cried at once all the three, The beautiful creature we saw last November, * Yours are tails with an i, and not tales with an e.!" | With his banner-like tail, that gracefully spread, * Well, well," said their father, “I shall be surprised, And was seen like a glory encircling his head ? If my tails with an i in the end are despised; Of that of the peacock no word will I say, So, sirs, I 'll proceed: now this tail, as I said, The thing is so common, you see it each day. Expresses what moves her in heart or in head. And now your attention to change I could wish Is she pleased — you know it is quiet, no doubt; To a different tail-even that of a fish; Js she angry — you know how she wags it about; And no less than the tail of the bird is this made Would she coax you,—she rubs, and she purrs, and with wonderful knowledge the creature to aid. her tail,
"T is his helm, and with it no more could he keep, With her back at right angles, she lists like a rail; Than a ship without rudder his place in the deep, Then the tail of a dog,—you need hardly be told, And the wisest philosophers all have decided, What tales this same tail of a dog can unfold. That no filter instrument could be provided. In his joy how he wags il—from turnspit to hound; That the shark, my dear boys, has a tail, without doubt, In his trouble. poor rogue! how it droops to the ground. From some book or other you 've long since made out; Then the tails of the horse and the cow, need I say! And you know how it puts, without hesitation, What useful and excellent Ny-traps are they? The crew of a ship into great consternation, But away! and the hot sandy deseris exploring, When he flaps down his tail on the deck, and no Do you hear how the terrible lion is roaring!
wonder, And see in the thicket his fiery eye flashing, For, like a sledge-hammer, it falleih in thunder; And his furious tail on his tawny sides lashing! And lest that its force 'gainst the ship should prevail, Yes, he is the king of all beasts, and can send The first thing they do, is to chop off its tail ! Most marvellous power to his very tail's end. Besides there are others,—the monkey's tail; you The same with the tiger -- and so of each kind, Know well what a monkey with his tail can do. The tail is a capital index of mind.
And have we forgotten the beaver ? it yields Then the tail of the rattle-snake-should you not fear The poor, patient creature great help when he builds, Its dry, husky sound in the forest to hear?
"T is the wagon he draws his materials upon, Suppose you were sleeping, the tree-roots your bed, "T is the trowel to finish his work when 't is done. And this terrible monster had crept to your head, Of the fox, too, in Norway, you've heard, without fail, And his tail should awake you,—I 'm sure you 'd be How he angles for crabs with his great bushy tail. glad
And there is the pigtail that gentlemen wore, That a tail with a larum the rattle-snake had. With its various fashions, about half a score. A propos of the snake - you've heard, I dare say. And the great cat-o'-nine tails! that terrible beast, Of the wasp and the homes, and such things as they; Has made itself famous by its tails, at least. of a venomous weapon they carry about,
And the tail of a comet! that tail, in its strongth, And moreover, you all know, I make not a doubt, Extending some thousands of miles in its length, That 't is placed in the tail, which same venomous Is nothing to laugh at; a most awful thing, thing
That could sweep down the world with its terrible The wise of all nations have christened a sting; swing! Bat the tail of a bird for no mischief is sent, And now since we've conned over bird, beast, and fish, A most scientific, and good instrument,
What greater amusement, my boys, could you wish? Constructed, indeed, on an excellent plan,
But the next time, however, I think we must try Light, flexible too, and spread out like a fan; For some nobler subject than tails with an i: Tis ballast and rudder, which ill he could spare, And so, good night to each one, now this the last line And a buoy to keep up the small creature in air. Of the ostrich, the tail is an elegant thing,
And the book and the chapter shall here have their Which is not despised by the mightiest king,
I made my masts of wild sea rush,
That grew on a secret shore;
Was the pleasant fag I bore.
For my ropes the spider's line;
To steer me over the brine.
And he knew each isle and bay ;
Could merrily steer away.
The dew as it sweetly fell ;
In the wild bees' summer cell.
Over the waters free;
That lies in the midmost sea!"
And long ere ever I wist,
That lay in the golden mist.
'Tis a place of wondrous spell ! But all that happ'd unto me there
In a printed book I'll tell.
As we stood on the strand,
And steer me back to land.
And longs my face to see ;
Art slow to sail with me?"
To set the vessel free !"
I snatch'd down the sails, I snapp'd the ropes,
I broke the masts in twain ; But on flew the bark, and against the rocks
Like a living thing did strain.
“Thou hast steer'd us wrong, thou helmsman vile !"
Said I to the Nautilus bold, “ We shall shoot down the gulf! we're dead men
And I seized the helm with a sudden jerk,
And we wheel'd round like a bird : But I saw the gulf of eternity,
And the tideless waves I heard.
“Good master," said the Nautilus
"I thought you might desire, To have some wondrous things to tell,
Beside your mother's fire.
As well sail on a pool !