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A few short years—and then these sounds shall hail The day again, and gladness fill the vale; 10 So soon the child a youth, the youth a man, Eager to run the race his fathers ran. Then the huge ox shall yield the broad sirloin; The ale, now brew'd, in floods of amber shine; And basking in the chimney's ample blaze, 15 Mid many a tale told of his boyish days, The nurse shall cry, of all her ills beguiled, « 'T was on these knees he sate so oft and smiled.”
And soon again shall music swell the breeze; Soon, issuing forth, shall glitter through the trees 20 Vestures of nuptial white; and hymns be sung, And violets scatter'd round; and old and young, In every cottage-porch with garlands green, Stand still to gaze, and, gazing, bless the scene; While, her dark eyes declining, by his side 25 Moves in her virgin-veil the gentle bride.
And once, alas, nor in a distant hour, Another voice shall come from yonder tower; When in dim chambers long black weeds are seen, And weepings heard where only joy has been; 30 When by his children borne, and from his door Slowly departing to return no more, He rests in holy earth with them that went before.
And such is Human Life: so gliding on, It glimmers like a meteor, and is gone!
And now the mother's ear has caught his cry;
Her by her smile how soon the stranger knows;
But soon a nobler task demands her care. Apart she joins his little hands in prayer, Telling of Him who sees in secret there !
25 And now the volume on her knee has caught His wandering eye—now many a written thought, Never to die, with many a lisping sweet, His moving, murmuring lips endeavour to repeat. Released, he chases the bright butterfly ;
30 O, he would follow-follow through the sky! Climbs the gaunt mastiff slumbering in his chain, And chides and buffets, clinging by the mane; Then runs, and, kneeling by the fountain-side, Sends his brave ship in triumph down the tide,
A dangerous voyage; or, if now he can,
Ah, who, when fading of itself away, Would cloud the sunshine of his little day! 45 Now is the May of life. Exulting round, Joy wings his feet, Joy lifts him from the ground ! Pointing to such, well might Cornelia say, When the rich casket shone in bright array, “These are my Jewels!” Well of such as he, 50 When Jesus spake, well might his language be, « Suffer these little ones to come to me!"
It seems a day
At thorns, and brakes, and brambles,-and, in truth,
cheek on one of those green stones, 35 That, fleeced with moss, under the shady trees, Lay round me, scatter'd like a flock of sheepI heard the murmur and the murmuring sound, In that sweet mood when pleasure loves to pay Tribute to ease; and of its joy secure,
40 The heart luxuriates with indifferent things, Wasting its kindliness on stocks and stones, And on the vacant air. Then up I rose, And dragg’d to earth both branch and bough, with crash And merciless ravage; and the shady nook 45
To see a child so very fair,
55 And did not wish her mine." Matthew is in his grave, yet now, Methinks I see him stand, As at that moment, with a bough Of wilding in his hand.
We talk'd with open heart, and tongue