Page images

Owning her weakness,
Her evil behavior,
And leaving, with meekness,
Her sins to her Savior!


BREAK, break, break,

On thy cold gray stones, O Sea!
And I would that my tongue could utter

The thoughts that arise in me.

O well for the fisherman's boy,

That he shouts with his sister at play!
O well for the sailor-lad,

That he sings in his boat on the bay!
And the stately ships go on

To their haven under the hill;
But O for the touch of a vanish'd hand,

And the sound of a voice that is still.

Break, break, break,

At the foot of thy crags, O Sea!
But the tender grace of a day that is dead

Will never come back to me.



A SOLDIER of the Legion lay dying in Algiers;
There was lack of woman's nursing, there was dearth of

woman's tears; But a comrade stood beside him, while his life-blood ebbed

away, And bent, with pitying glances, to hear what he might say. The dying soldier faltered, as he took that comrade's hand, And he said, “I nevermore shall see my own, my native land; Take a message, and a token, to some distant friends of mine, For I was born at Bingen,-at Bingen on the Rhine.

“Tell my brothers and companions, when they meet and

crowd around, To hear my mournful story, in the pleasant vineyard ground, That we fought the battle bravely, and when the day was

done, Full many a corse lay ghastly pale beneath the setting sun; And, mid the dead and dying, were some grown

old in

wars, The death-wound on their gallant breasts, the last of many

scars; And some were young, and suddenly beheld life's morn

decline,And one had come from Bingen,-fair Bingen on the Rhine.

" Tell


mother that her other son shall comfort her old age; For I was still a truant bird, that thought his home a cage. For

my father was a soldier, and even as a child My heart leaped forth to hear him tell of struggles fierce

and wild; And when he died, and left us to divide his scanty hoard, 1 let them take whate'er they would,--but kept my father's

sword; And with boyish love I hung it, where the bright light used

to shine, On the cottage wall at Bingen,-calm Bingen on the Rhine. “Tell my sister not to weep for me, and sob with drooping

head, When the troops come marching home again with glad and

gallant tread, But to look upon them proudly, with a calm and steadfast eye, Tor her brother was a soldier too, and not afraid to die; And if a comrade seek her love, I ask her in my name To listen to him kindly, without regret or shame, And to hang the old sword in its place (my father's sword

and mine) For the honor of old Bingen,-dear Bingen on the Rhine.


her eye;

« There's another,—not a sister; in the happy days gone by
You'd have known her by the merriment that sparkled in
Too innocent for coquetry,--too fond for idle scorning,
O friend! I fear the lightest heart makes sometimes heaviest


Tell her the last night of my life (for, ere the moon be risen,
My body will be out of pain, my soul be out of prison),-
I dreamed I stood with her, and saw the yellow sunlight shine
On the vine-clad hills of Bingen,-fair Bingen on the Rhine.
I saw the blue Rhine sweep along,—I heard, or seemed to

hear, The German songs.we used to sing, in chorus sweet and

clear; And down the pleasant river, and up the slanting hill, The echoing chorus sounded, through the evening calm and

still; And her glad blue eyes were on me, as we passed, with

friendly talk, Down many a path beloved of yore, and well-remembered

walk! And her little hand lay lightly, confidingly in mine,But we'll meet no more at Bingen,-loved Bingen on the


His trembling voice grew faint and hoarse,-his grasp was

childish weak,His eyes put on a dying look,—he sighed and ceased to

speak; His comrade bent to lift him, but the spark of life had fled,The soldier of the Legion in a foreign land is dead! And the soft moon rose up slowly, and calmly she looked

down On the red sand of the battle-field, with bloody corses strewn; Yes, calmly on that dreadful scene her pale light seemed to

shine, As it shone on distant Bingen,-fair Bingen on the Rhine.



How sleep the brave, who sink to rest
By all their country's wishes blessed!
When Spring, with dewy fingers cold,
Returns to deck their hallowed mould,
She there shall dress a sweeter sod
Than Fancy's feet have ever trod.

By fairy hands their knell is rung;
By forms unseen their dirge is sung;
There Honor comes, a pilgrim gray,
To bless the turf that wraps their clay;
And Freedom shall awhile repair,
To dwell a weeping hermit there!



YE banks and braes o' bonnie Doon,

How can ye bloom sae fresh and fair?
How can ye chant, ye little birds,

And I sae weary, fu' o' care?
Thou'lt break my heart, thou warbling bird,

That wantons through the flowering thorn;
Thou minds me o' departed joys,

Departed—never to return.
Aft hae I rored by bonnie Doon,

To see the rose and wocdbine twine;
And ilka bird sang o' its luve,

And, fondly, sae did I o' mine. Wi' lightsome heart I pou'd a rose,

Ι * Fu' sweet upon its thorny tree; And my

fause luver stole my rose, But ah! he left the thorn wi' me.



Her suffering ended with the day;

Yet lived she at its close,
And breathed the long, long night away

In statue-like repose.

But when the sun, in all his state,

Illumed the eastern skies,
She passed through glory's morning-gate,

And walked in Paradise!



We watched her breathing through the night,

Her breathing soft and low, As in her breast the wave of life

Kept heaving to and fro.

So silently we seemed to speak,

So slowly moved about,
As we had lent her half our powers

To eke her living out.

Our very hopes belied our fears,

Our fears our hopes belied, —
We thought her dying when she slept,

And sleeping when she died.

For when the morn came dim and sad,

And chill with early showers, Her quiet eyelids closed,-she had

Another morn than ours.


“ROCK OF AGES.” “Rock of ages, cleft for me,”

Thoughtlessly the maiden sung, Fell the words unconsciously

From her girlish, gleeful tongue, Sung as little children sing,

Sung as sing the birds in June;
Fell the words like light leaves sown

On the current of the tune
“Rock of ages, cleft for me,
Let me hide myself in Thee."
Felt her soul no need to hide-

Sweet the song as song could be
And she had no thought beside;

All the words unheedingly
Fell from lips untouched by care,

Dreaming not that each might be
On some other lips a prayer-

« PreviousContinue »