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When dashed an archer through the glade,
And when he saw the hound was stayed,
He drew his tough bow-string;
But a rough voice cried, “Shoot not, hoy!
Ho! shoot not, Edward—'tis a boy!”
The speaker issued from the wood,
And checked his fellow's surly mood,
And quelled the ban-dog's ire;
He was an English yeoman good,
And born in Lancashire.
Well could he hit a fallow deer,
Five hundred feet him fro;
With hand more true, and eye more clear,
No archer bended bow.
His coal-black hair, shorn round and close,
Set off his sun-burnt face;
Old England's sign, St. George's cross,
His barret-cap did grace;
His bugle-horn hung by his side,
All in a wolf-skin baldrick tied ;
And his short faulchion, sharp and clear,
Had pierced the throat of many a deer
His kirtle, made of forest green,
Reached scantly to his knee;
And, at his belt, of arrows keen
A furbished sheaf bore he ;
His buckler scarce in breadth a span,
No longer fence had he ;
He never counted him a man
Would strike below the knee; His slackened bow was in his hand, And the leash, that was his blood-hound's band. He would not do the fair child harm,
But held him with his powerful arm,
That he might neither fight nor flee;
For when the Red Cross spied he,
The boy strove long and violently.
“Now, by St. George,” the archer cries,
“Edward, methinks we have a prize
This boy's fair face, and courage free,
Shows he is come of high degree.”-
“ Yes! I am come of high degree,
For I am the heir of bold Buccleuch; And if thou dost not set me free,
False Southron, thou shalt dearly rue! For Walter of Harden shall come with speed, And William of Deloraine, good at need, And every Scott from Esk to Tweed; And, if thou dost not let me go, Despite thy arrows and thy bow, I'll have thee hanged to feed the crow!"
“Gramercy, for thy good will, fair boy!
My mind was never set so high ;
But if thou art chief of such a clan,
And art the son of such a man,
And ever comest to thy command,
Our wardens had need to keep good order : My bow of yew to a hazel wand,
Thou'lt make them work upon the Border. Meantime, be pleased to come with me, For good Lord Dacre shalt thou see: I think our work is well begun, When we have taken thy father's son.'
UNDERNEATH an old oak tree
There was of swine a huge company,
That grunted as they crunched the mast:
For that was ripe, and fell full fast.
Then they trotted away, for the wind grew high :
One acorn they left, and no more might you spy.
Next came a Raven, that liked not sucn folly:
He belonged, they did say, to the witch Melancholy !
Blacker was he than blackest jet,
Flew low in the rain, and his feathers not wet.
He picked up the acorn, and buried it straight
By the side of a river both deep and great.
Where then did the Raven
He went high and low,
Over hill, over dale, did the black Raven go.
Many Autumns, many Springs,
Travelled he with wandering wings:
Many Summers, many Winters,
I can't tell half his adventures.
At length he came back, and with him a She,
And the acorn was grown to a tall oak tree.
They built them a nest in the topmost bough,
And young ones they had, and were happy enow.
But soon came a woodman in leathern guise,
His brow, like a pent-house, hung over his eyes.
He'd an axe in his hand, not a word he spoke,
But with many a hem! and a sturdy stroke,
At length he brought down the poor Raven's own oak.
young ones were killed; for they could not depart, And their mother did die of a broken heart.
The boughs from the trunk the woodman did sever ;
And they floated it down on the course of the river.
They sawed it in planks, and its bark they did strip,
And with this tree and others they made a good ship.
The ship it was launched; but in sight of the land
Such a storm there did rise as no ship could withstand,
It bulged on a rock, and the waves rushed in fast:
Round and round flew the Raven, and cawed to the blast
He heard the last shriek of the perishing souls-
See ! see! o'er the topmast the mad water rolls !
Right glad was the Raven, and off he went fleet,
And Death riding home on a cloud he did meet,
And he thanked him again and again for this treat:
They had taken his all, and Revenge it was sweet!
ANSWER TO A CHILD'S QUESTION.
Do you ask what the birds say ? The sparrow, the dove,
The linnet, and thrush say, "I love and I love!"
In the winter they're silent--the wind is so strong;
What it says, I don't know, but it sings a lond song.
But green leaves and blossoms, and sunny warm weather,
And singing, and loving—all come back together.
But the lark is so brimful of gladness and love,
The green fields below him, the blue sky above,
That he sings, and he sings; and for ever sings he
I love my Love, and my Love loves me!”
Now the bright morning star, day's harbinger,
Comes dancing from the East, and leads with her
The flowery May, who from her green lap throws
The yellow cowslip, and the pale primrose.
Hail, bounteous May, that dost inspire
Mirth and youth and warm desire ;
Woods and groves are of thy dressing,
Hill and dale doth boast thy blessing.
Thus we salute thee with our early song,
And welcome thee, and wish thee long.
The boy stood on the burning deck,
Whence all but he had fled;
The flame that lit the battle's wreck
Shone round him o'er the dead.
Young Casabianca, boy about thirteen years old, son to tho admiral of the Orient, remained at his post, in the battle of the Nile, after the ship had taken fire, and all the guns had been abandoned and perished in the explosion of the vessel, when the flames had reached the powder.