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208 FOLK-SONGS OF LOWER BRITTANY.
In The Secrets of the Clerk there is a more delicate fancy, and the gracious avowal has all the charm of a natural and touching imagery: —
THE SECRETS OF THE CLERK.
Each night, each night, as on my bed I lie, I do not sleep, but turn myself and cry.
I do not sleep, but turn myself and weep, When I think of her I love so deep.
Each day I seek the Wood of Love so dear, In hopes to see you at its streamlet clear.
When I see you come through the forest grove, On its leaves I write the secrets of my love.
— But a fragile trust are the forest leaves,
To hold the secrets close which their page receives.
When comes the storm of rain, and gusty air, Your secrets close are scattered everywhere.
'T were safer far, young clerk, on my heart to write. Graven deep they 'd rest, and never take their flight.
The amatory folk-songs of Brittany have their peculiar images and phrases, like those of all other countries, and which are repeated without variation as almost essential characteristics. The reader of Scottish ballads knows how invariably the recipient of a letter first smiles and then has his eyes blinded