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But our ears were so used to her bleating, we hear what no

others can hear, The cry of a lost little child from some distant, unseen sphere. Only a wee bit bairn, with lamb-like innocent ways, But the lilt of her little voice will be heard to the end of our

days, Blithe as a bee was our baby, and sweet as the flowers in May; Now she sleeps under the daisies with which she delighted to

play. They bid us be patient and faithful, that God brings all things

right, But we pine for her prattle by day, and her dear little form at

night. They say she is singing to angels—we want her to sing to us

here; Could we tire of such music as hers in little less than a year ? Only a wee little bairn, with pinky hands and toes, Teeth like the purest of pearls, lips and cheeks like a rose, Beautiful glossy hair, that curled like the shoots of a vine, And bound with a magic clasp her mother's heart and mine. They say she is happy-we feel it ! but think that it hardly

can beTorn from her brothers and sisters, her loving mother and me. We

gaze at the stars above us, and bow to the weight of our load; Perchance the same Hand that has scattered will gather the

thorns from our road.

The Fool's Prayer.
The royal feast was done; the king
Sought some new sport to banish care,
And to his jester cried, “Sir Fool,
Kneel down and make for us a prayer !
The jester doffed his cap and bells,
And stood the mocking court before :
They could not see the bitter smile
Behind the painted grin he wore.

He bowed his head and bent his knee
Upon the monarch's silken stool;
His pleading voice arose, “O Lord,
Be merciful to me, a fool !
“No pity, Lord, could change the heart
From red with wrong to white as wool,
The rod must heal the sin ; but, Lord,
Be merciful to me, a fool !
“ 'Tis not by guilt the onward sweep
Of truth and right, O Lord, we stay;
'Tis by our follies that so long
We hold the earth from Heaven away.
“These clumsy feet still in the mire,
Go crushing blossoms without end;
These hard well-meaning hands, we thrust
Among the heart-strings of a friend.
• The ill-timed truth we might have kept,
Who knows how sharp it pierced and stung;
The word we had not sense to say,
Who knows how grandly it had rung!
“Our faults no tenderness should ask,
The chastening stripes must cleanse them all
But for our blunders : Oh, in shame,
Before the eyes of Heaven we fall.
“ Earth bears no balsam for mistakes :
Men crown the knave, and scourge the tool
That did his will ; but Thou, O Lord,
Be merciful to me, a fool.”
The room was hushed ; in silence rose
The king, and sought his gardens cool,
And walked apart, and murmured low,
“ Be merciful to me, a fool.”

Marit and I.
Marit at the brookside sitting, rosy, dimpled, merry-eyed,

her lovely visage trembling in the mirror of the While between her pretty teeth a golden coil of hair she held ; Like a shining snake it quivered in the tide, and shrunk and swelled.

And she dipped her dainty fingers deftly in the cliilly brook ;
Scarce she ininded how her image with the ripples curved and shook ;
Stooping with a tiny shudder, dashed the water in her face ;
O’er her brow and cheeks the dew-drops glistening rolled and sell

Breathless sat I, safely hidden in the tree-top dense and green ;
For a maid is ne'er so sweet as when she thinks herself unseen;
And I saw her with a scarlet ribbon tie her braid of hair,
And it seemed to me that moment I had ne'er seen aught so fair.
Now, if you will never breathe it, I will tell you something queer-
Only step a little nearer ; let me whisper in your ear;
If you think it was the first time that in this sequestered dell
I beheld the little Marit-well, 'tis scarcely fair to tell.
There within my leafy bower sat I, happy as a king,
And two anxious wrens were flitting round about me twittering,
While I gazed at Marit's image framed in heaven's eternal blue,
While the clouds were drifting past it, and the birds across it flew.
But anon the smile that hovered in the water stole

away, Though the sunshine through the birch leaves flung of light its shim

mering spray, And a breath came floating upward as if some one gently sighed, And at just the self-same moment sighed the image in the tide. Then I heard a mournful whisper : “0 thou poor, thou pretty face ! Without gold what will avail thee, bloom of beauty, youth and grace? For a maid who has no dower—"and her curly head she shook : It was little Marit speaking to her image in the brook. More I heard not, for the whisper in a shivering sigh expired, And the image in the water looked so sad and sweet and tired. Full of love and full of pity, down I stooped her plaint to hear : I could almost touch the ringlets curling archly round her car. Nearer, still a little nearer, forth I crept along the bough. Tremblingly her lips were moving, and a cloud rose on her brow, Precious darling," thought I, grieve not that thou hast no lover

found" Crash the branch went, and, bewildered, down I tumbled on the

ground. Up then sprang the little Marit with a cry of wild alarm, And she gazed as if she dreaded I had come to do her harm. Swift she darted through the bushes, and with stupid wonder mute Stood I staring blankly after ere I started in pursuit. And a merry chase I gave her through the underbush and copse : Over fallen trunks and boulders on she fled with skips and hops ; Glancing sharply o'er her shoulder when she heard my footsteps

sound, Dashing on with reckless terror like a deer before the hound.

Hot with zeal I broke my pathway where the clustered boughs were

For I wanted to assure her I intended no offence;
And at last, exhausted, fell she on the green-sward quivering,
Sobbing, panting, pleading, weeping, like a wild, unreasoning thing.

Marit,” said I, stooping down, “I hardly see why you should cry:
There is scarce in all the parish such a harmless lad as I ;
And you know I always liked you "-here my voice was soft and low.
“No, indeed,” she sobbed, in answer—“no, indeed, I do not know."
But methought that in her voice there was a touch of petulance;
Through the

glistening tears I caught a little shy and furtive glance. Growing bolder then, I clasped her dainty hand full tenderly, Though it made a mock exertion, struggling faintly to be free. “Little Marit,” said I, gently,“ tell me what has grieved you so, For I heard you sighing sorely at the brook a while ago."

0," she said, her sobs subduing, with an air demure and meek0, it was that naughty kitten; he had scratched me on the cheek.” Nothing worse?” I answered, gayly, while I strove her glance to

catch. “Let me look; my kiss is healing. May I cure the kitten's

scratch ? " And I kissed the burning blushes on her cheeks in heedless glee, Though the marks of Pussy's scratches were invisible to me.

O thou poor, thou pretty darling !” cried I, frantic with delight, While she gazed upon me smiling, yet with eyes that tears made

bright, "Let thy beauty be thy dower, and be mine to have and hold ; For a face as sweet as thou hast needs, in sooth, no frame of gold.”

A woman to a holy father went;
Confession of her sins was her intent;
And so her misdemeanors, great and small,
She faithfully rehearsed them all ;
And chiefest in her catalogue of sin,
She owned that she a tale-bearer had been,
And borne a bit of scandal up and down
To all the long-tongued gossips in the town.
The holy father for her other sins
Granted the absolution asked of him ;
But while for all the rest he pardon gave,
He told her this offence was very grave,

And that to do fit penance she must go
Out by the wayside, where the thistles grow,
And gathering the largest, ripest one,
Scatter its seeds, and that when this was done
She must come back again another day
To tell him; his commands she must obey.

Feeling right glad she had escaped so well,
Next day but one she went the priest to tell;
The priest sat still and heard her story through,
Then said: “There's something still for you to do;
Those little thistle-seeds which you have sown
I bid you to re-gather, every one.”
The woman said : “But, father, 'twould be vain
To try to gather up those seeds again ;
The winds have scattered them both far and wide
O'er the meadowed vale and mountain side."
The father answered: “May I hope from this
The lesson I have taught, you will not miss ?
You cannot gather back the scattered seeds,
Which far and wide will grow to noxious weeds,
Nor can the mischief once by scandal sown
By any penance be again undone.

The Charming Woman.
So Miss Myrtle is going to marry

What a number of hearts she will break ! There's Lord George and Tom Brown and Sir Harry,

A re dying of love for her sake! 'Tis a match that we all must approve,

Let the gossips say all that they can ! For indeed she's a charming woman,

And he's a most fortunate man. Yes, indeed, she's a charming woman,

And she reads both Latin and Greek ; And I'm told that she solved a problem

In Euclid, before she could speak ! Had she been but a daughter of mine,

I'd have taught her to hem and to sew,


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