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THE COTTAGE GIRL.
A CHILD beside a hamlet's fount at play,
What had the scene for memory to recall, With a fond look of love? What secret spell With the heart's pictures bade its image dwell? What but the spirit of the joyous child,
That freshly forth o'er stream and yerdure smiled, Casting upon the common things of earth
A brightness, born and gone with infant mirth!
THE CROSS IN THE WILDERNESS
SILENT and mournful sat an Indian chief,
His eyes, that might not weep, were dark with grief,
For a pale Cross above its greensward rose,
Telling the cedars and the pines that there Man's heart and hope had struggled with his woes, And lifted from the dust a voice of prayer. Now all was hushed-and eve's last splendor shone, With a rich sadness, on the attesting stone.
There came a lonely traveller o'er the wild,
And he too paused in reverence by that grave, Asking the tale of its memorial, piled
Between the forest and the lake's bright wave; Till, as a wind might stir a wither'd oak, On the deep dream of age his accents broke:
And the grey chieftain, slowly rising, said,
"I listened for the words, which years ago Passed o'er these waters; though the voice is fled
Which made them as a singing fountain's flow; Yet, when I sit in their long-faded track, Sometimes the forest's murmur gives them back.
"Ask'st thou of him, whose house is lone beneath? I was an eagle in my youthful pride,
When o'er the seas he came, with summer's breath,
"Not with the hunter's bow and spear he came,
Laying their cedars like the corn-stalks low;
"Doth not yon cypress whisper how we met,
I and my brethren that from earth are gone, Under his boughs to hear his voice, which yet
Seems through their gloom to send a silvery tone? He told of One, the grave's dark bands who broke, And our hearts burned within us as he spoke !
"He told of far and sunny lands, which lie
Beyond the dust wherein our fathers dwell, Bright must they be! for there are none that die,
And none that weep, and none that say, 'Farewell!' He came to guide us thither, but away The happy called him, and he might not stay.
"We saw him slowly fade-athirst, perchance, For the fresh waters of that lovely clime; Yet there was still a sunbeam in his glance,
And on his gleaming hair no touch of time: Therefore we hoped-but now the lake looks dim, For the green summer comes-and finds not him!
"We gather'd round him in the dewy hour
Of one still morn, beneath his chosen tree; From his clear voice at first the words of power Came low, like moanings of a distant sea; But swelled, and shook the wilderness ere long, As if the spirit of the breeze grew strong.
"And then once more they trembled on his tongue,
Know'st thou not how we pass to join the dead?
"We buried him where he was wont to pray,
Now hath be surely reached, o'er mount and wave, That flowery land whose green turf hides no grave!
"But I am sad-I mourn the clear light taken
Back from my people, o'er whose place it shone, The pathway to the better shore forsaken,
And the true words forgotten, save by one, Who hears them faintly sounding from the past, Mingled with death-songs in each fitful blast."
Then spoke the wanderer forth, with kindling eye:-
"Hope on, hope ever!-by the sudden springing
Of green leaves which the winter hid so long;
After cold, silent months, the woods among;
"Deem not the words of light that here were spoken, But as a lovely song, to leave no trace!
Yet shall the gloom which wraps thy hills be broken,
So by the Cross they parted, in the wild,
Each fraught with musings for life's after-day, Memories to visit one, the Forest's Child,
By many a blue stream on its lonely way; And upon one, 'midst busy throngs to press Deep thoughts and sad, yet full of holiness.
THE CHILDE'S DESTINY.
"And none did love him,-not his lemans dear,--
No mistress of the hidden skill,
To read the stars for him;
I bind thee with a spell," said she,
No woman's love shall light on thee,
"And trust me, 'tis not that thy cheek
Nor that thine eye is slow to speak
Hath blush'd with passion's kiss;
Hath caught its fire from bliss;
And while the young stars shine,
"And 'tis not that thy spirit, aw'd