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122
SONGS FOR GIRLHOOD.
Fashioned so slenderly, Young, and so fair!
Ere her limbs frigidly
Stiffen too rigidly, Decently, kindly
Smooth and compose them;
And her eyes, close them, Staring so blindly !
Dreadfully staring
Through muddy impurity, As when with the daring Last look of despairing
Fixed on futurity.
Perishing gloomily, Spurned by contumely,
Bold inhumanity,
Burning insanity, Into her rest;
Cross her hands humbly,
As if praying dumbly, Over her breast!
Owuiug her weakness,
Her evil behavior, And leaving with meekness
Her sins to her Saviour.
One sleeps where Southern vines are dressed
Above the noble slain ; He wrapped the colors round his breast
On a blood-red field of Spain.
And one, o'er her the myrtle showers Its leaves, by soft winds fanned;
She faded midst Italian flowers´┐Ż The last of that fair band.
And parted thus, they rest who played
Beneath the same green tree ; Whose voices mingled as they prayed
Around one parent knee.
They that with smiles lit up the hall, And cheered with song the hearth;
Alas for love! if thou wert all, Aud naught beyond, O earth!
THE LIGHT-HOUSE. Henry Wadsworth Longfellow.
The rocky ledge runs far into the sea, Aud on its outer point, some miles away.
The light-house lifts its massive masonry, A pillar of fire by night, of cloud by day.
Even at this distance I can see the tides, Upheaving, break unheard along its base.
A speechless wrath, that rises and subsides In the white lip and tremor of the face.
And as the evening darkens, lo! how bright, Through the deep purple of the twilight air,
Beams forth the sudden radiauce of its light, With strange, unearthly splendor in its glare.'
Not one alone ; from each projecting cape And perilous reef along the ocean's verge
Starts into life a dim gigantic shape.
Holding its lantern o'er the restless surge.
Like the great giant Christopher it stands Upon the brink of the tempestuous wave,
Wading far out among the rocks and sands, The night-o'ertakeii mariner to save.
And the great ships sail outward and return, Bending and bowing o'er the billowy swells,
And ever joyful, as they see it burn.
They wave their silent welcomes and farewells.
THE GRAVES OF A HOUSEHOLD.
Mrs. Hemans.
They grew in beauty, side by side;
They filled one home with glee; Their graves are severed far and wide,
By mount, and stream, and sea.
The same fend mother bent at night O'er each fair sleeping brow;
She had each folded flower in sight: Where are those sleepers now ?
One, midst the forests of the West,
By a dark stream is laid: The Indian knows his place of rest.
Far in the cedar shade.
The sea, the lone blue sea, hath one;
He lies where pearls lie, deep ; He was the loved of all, yet none
O'er his low bed may weep.







E-Book - An Annotated Compendium of Old Time American Songs by James Alverson III