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COLERIDGE

SLAUGHTER.
I stood in a swampy field of battle;
With bones and skulls I made a rattle,

They shall tear him limb from limb!
To frighten the wolf and carrion-crow
And the homeless dog—but they would not go.

FIRE.
So off I flew: for how could I bear

O thankless beldames and untrue!
To see them gorge their dainty fare?

And is this all that you can do
I heard a groan and a peevish squall,

For him, who did so much for you?
And through the chink of a cottage-wall-

Ninety months he, by my troth!
Can you guess what I saw there?

Hath richly cater'd for you both;

And in an hour would you repay
Both,

An eight years' work ?--Away! away!
Whisper it, sister! in our ear.

I alone am faithful! I
FAMINE.

Cling to him everlastingly.
A baby beat its dying mother:
I had starv'd the one and was starving the other!

LOVE.
Both.

All thoughts, all passions, all delights,

Whatever stirs this mortal frame,
Who bade you do't?

Are all but ministers of Love,
FAMINE.

And feed his sacred flame.
The same! the same!

Oft in my waking dreams do I
Letters four do form his name.

Live o'er again that happy hour,
He let me loose, and cried, Halloo !

When midway on the mount I lay,
To him alone the praise is due.

Beside the ruin'd tower.
FIRE.

The moonshine, stealing o'er the scene,
Sisters! I from Ireland came !

Had blended with the lights of eve;
Hedge and corn-fields all on flame,

And she was there, my hope, my joy,
I triumph'd o'er the setting Sun!

My own dear Genevieve!
And all the while the work was done,
On as I strode with my huge strides,

She leant against the armed man,
I dung back my head and I held my sides,

The statue of the armed knight;

She stood and listen’d to my lay,
It was so rare a piece of fun

Amid the lingering light.
To see the swelter'd cattle run
With uncouth gallop through the night,

Few sorrows hath she of her own,
Scared by the red and noisy light!

My hope! my joy! my Genevieve!
By the light of his own blazing cot

She loves me best, whene'er I sing
Was many a naked rebel shot:

The
songs

that make her grieve.
The house-stream met the flame and hiss'd,
While crash! fell in the roof, I wist,

I play'd a soft and doleful air,
On some of those old bed-rid nurses,

I sang an old and moving story-
That deal in discontent and curses.

An old rude song, that suited well

That ruin wild and hoary.
Both.

She listen’d with a fitting blush,
Who bade you do't?

With downcast eyes and modest grace,

For well she knew, I could not chuse
FIRE.

But
The same! the same!

gaze upon her face.
Letters four do form his name.

I told her of the Knight that wore
He let me loose, and cried, Halloo!

Upon his shield a burning brand;
To him alone the praise is due.

And that for ten long years he woo'd

The Lady of the Land.
All

I told her how he pin’d; and ah!
He let us loose, and cried, Halloo!

The deep, the low, the pleading tone
How shall we yield him honour due ?

With which I sang another's love,
FAMINE.

Interpreted my own.
Wisdom comes with lack of food.

She listen'd with a flitting blush,
I'll gnaw, I'll gnaw the multitude,

With downcast eyes, and modest grace;
Till the cup of rage o'erbrim:

And she forgave me, that I gazed
They shall seize him and his brood-

Too fondly on her face!

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But when I told the cruel scorn

All impulses of soul and sense That craz'd that bold and lovely Knight,

Had thrillid my guileless Genevieve; And that he cross'd the mountain-woods,

The music, and the doleful tale, Nor rested day nor night;

The rich and balmy eve; That sometimes from the savage den,

And hopes, and fears that kindle hope, And sometimes from the darksome shade,

An undistinguishable throng, And sometimes starting up at once

And gentle wishes long subdued, In green and sunny glade,

Subdued and cherish'd long! There came and look'd him in the face

She wept with pity and delight, An angel beautiful and bright;

She blush'd with love, and virgin-shame; And that he knew it was a fiend,

And like the murmur of a dream, This miserable Knight!

I heard her breathe my name. And that unknowing what he did,

Her bosom heav'd-she stept aside, He leap'd amid a murderous band,

As conscious of my look she stepAnd sav'd from outrage worse than death

Then suddenly, with tímorous eye The Lady of the Land!

She fled to me and wept. And how she wept, and claspt his knees;

She half enclosed me with her arms, And how she tended him in vain

She press'd me with a meek embrace; And ever strove to expiate

And bending back her head, look'd up, The scorn that crazed his brain.

And gazed upon my face. And that she nursed him in a cave;

'Twas partly Love, and partly Fear, And how his madness went away,

And partly 'twas a bashful art, When on the yellow forest-leaves

That I might rather feel, than see, A dying man he lay.

The swelling of her heart. His dying words—but when I reach'd

I calm’d her fears, and she was calm, That tenderest strain of all the ditty,

And told her love with virgin-pride. My faultering voice and pausing harp

And so I won my Genevieve, Disturb'd her soul with pity!

My bright and beauteous bride.

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“ But they are dead; those two are dead! Their spirits are in Heaven!" 'Twas throwing words away: for still The little maid would have her will, And said, “ Nay, we are Seven !”

2

THE PET-LAMB.

WE ARE SEVEN.

A simple child
That lightly draws its breath,
And feels its life in every limb,

What should it know of death ? 225. I met a little cottage girl:

She was eight years old, she said ;
Her hair was thick with many a curl

That clustered round her head.
ELE She had a ru stic, woodland air,

And she was wildly clad;
Her eyes were fair, and very fair;
- Her beauty made me glad.
“ Sisters and brothers, little maid,
How many may you be?”.
“How many? Seven in all," she said,
And wondering looked at me.
“ And where are they? I pray you tell.”
She answered, “ Seven are we;

And two of us at Conway dwell, i And two are gone to sea.

Two of us in the church-yard lie,
My sister and my brother;
And, in the church-yard cottage, I
Dwell near them with my mother.”
“ You say that two at Conway dwell,
And two are gone to sea,
Yet ye are seven! I pray you tell,
Sweet maid, how this may be?”.
Then did the little maid reply,
“ Seven boys and girls are we;
Two of us in the church-yard lie,
Beneath the church-yard tree.”
“ You run about, my little maid,
Your limbs they are alive;
If two are in the church-yard laid,
Then ye are only five.”
“ Their graves are green, they may be seen,”
The little maid replied,
“Twelve steps or more from my mother's door,
And they are side by side.
My stockings there I often knit,
My kerchief there I hem;
And there upon the ground I sit-
I sit and sing to them.
And often after sun-set, sir,
When it is light and fair,
I take my little porringer,
And eat my supper there.

A PASTORAL.

The dew was falling fast, the stars began to blink ; I heard a voice: it said, “ Drink, pretty creature,

drink!" And, looking o'er the hedge, before me I espied A snow-white mountain lamb, with a maiden at its

side.

No other sheep were near, the lamb was all alone, And by a slender cord was tethered to a stone; With one knee on the grass did the little maiden kneel,

(meal. While to that mountain lamb she gave its evening

The lamb, while from her hand he thus his supper

took, Seem'd to feast with head and ears; and his tail with pleasure shook.

[a tone “ Drink, pretty creature, drink,” she said in such That I almost received her heart into my own.

'Twas little Barbara Lewthwaite, a child of beauty rare!

(pair. I watched them with delight; they were a lovely Now with her empty can the maiden turned away; But, ere ten yards were gone, her footsteps did she

stay.

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A PASTORAL.

lato a

And i Rece

That plaintive cry! which up the hill

Comes from the depth of Dungeon Ghyll.

Towards the lamb she looked; and from that shady “ Here thou need'st not dread the raven in the sky; place

Night and day thou art safe,-our cottage is hard by. I, unobserved, could see the workings of her face: Why bleat so after me? Why pull so at thy chain? If Nature to her tongue could measured numbers Sleep-and at break of day I will come to the bring,

(sing. again!" Thus, thought I, to her lamb that little maid might

-As homeward through the lane I went with lazy “ What ails thee, young one? What? Why pull This song to myself did I oftentimes repeat; [feet, so at thy cord ?

[board ;

And it seemed, as I retraced the ballad line by line,
Is it not well with thee? Well both for bed and

That but half of it was hers, and one half of it was
Thy plot of grass is soft, and green as grass can be; mine.
Rest, little young one, rest; what is't that aileth thee?
“ What is it thou wouldst seek? What is wanting

Again, and once again did I repeat the song;
to thy heart?

(art:

Nay,” said I, “ more than half to the danisel Thy limbs, are they not strong? And beautiful thou

must belong,

(such a tone,

For she looked with such a look, and she spake with This grass is tender grass; these flowers they have

That I almost received her heart into my own." no peers; And that green corn, all day, is rustling in thy ears ! “ If the sun be shining hot, do but stretch thy woollen chain,

THE IDLE SHEPHERD BOYS, This beech is standing by, its covert thou canst gain ; For rain and mountain storms! the like thou need'st not fear (come here

I. The rain and storm are things which scarcely can

The valley rings with mirth and joy; “Rest, little young one, rest; thou hast forgot the day

Among the hills the echoes play
When my father found thee first in places far away: A never, never ending song,
Many locks were on the hills, but thou wert owned To welcome in the May:
by none;

The magpie chatters with delight;
And thy mother from thy side forevermore was gone. The mountain raven's youngling brood

Have left the mother and the nest; “ He took thee in his arms, and in pity brought thee home:

(roam ?

And they go rambling east and west A blessed day for thee! then whither wouldst thou

In search of their own food; A faithful nurse thou hast; the dam that did thee

Or through the glittering vapours dart

In very wantonness of heart. yean Upon the mountain tops no kinder could have been.

II. “ Thou know'st that twice a-day I have brought

Beneath a rock, upon the grass, thee in this can

Two boys are sitting in the sun; Fresh water from the brook, as clear as ever ran;

It seems they have no work to do And twice in the day, when the ground is wet with

Or that their work is done. dew,

[new. I bring thee draughts of milk, warm milk it is, and

On pipes of sycamore they play

The fragments of a Christmas hymn; “ Thy limbs will shortly be twice as stout as they

Or with that plant which in our dale are now,

(plough;

We call stag-horn, or fox's tail, Then I'll yoke thee to my cart like a pony in the

Their rusty hats they trim: My playmate thou shalt be; and when the wind is

And thus, as happy as the day, cold

[fold.

Those shepherds wear the time away.
Our hearth shall be thy bed, our house shall be thy
“ It will not, will not rest !--poor creature, can it be
That 'tis thy mother's heart which is working so in

thee?
Things that I know not of belike to thee are dear,
And dreams of things which thou canst neither see

nor hear. “ Alas, the mountain tops that look so green and fair! I've heard of fearful winds and darkness that come

there; The little brooks that seem all pastime and all play, When they are angry, roar like lions for their prey.

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III.
Along the river's stony marge
The sand-lark chaunts a joyous song;
The thrush is busy in the wood,
And carols loud and strong.
A thousand lambs are on the rocks,
All newly born! both earth and sky
Keep jubilee; and more than all,
Those boys with their green coronal;
They never hear the cry,

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V.

SIX YEARS OLD.

IV.

By chance had thither strayed ; Said Walter, leaping from the ground,

And there the helpless lamb be found, * Down to the stump of yon old yew

By those huge rocks encompassed round.
We'll for our whistles run a race."

IX.
-Away the shepherds flew.
They leapt—they ran—and when they came

He drew it gently from the pool,
Right opposite to Dungeon-Ghyll,

And brought it forth into the light: Seeing that he should lose the prize,

The shepherds met him with his charge, Stop!” to his comrade Walter cries

An unexpected sight! James stopped with no good will:

Into their arms the lamb they took, Said Walter then, “ Your task is here,

Said they, “ He’s neither maimed nor scarred.” 1. 'Twill keep you working half a year.

Then up the steep ascent they hied,
And placed him at his mother's side ;

And gently did the bard “ Now cross where I shall cross-come on,

Those idle shepherd-boys upbraid,

And bade them better mind their trade.
And follow me where I shall lead.”-
The other took him at his word;
But did not like the deed.

TO H. C.
It was a spot, which you may see
If ever you to Langdale go:
Into a chasm a mighty block

O thou! whose fancies from afar are brought; Hath fallen, and made a bridge of rock:

Who of thy words dost make a mock apparel, The gulph is deep below;

And fittest to unutterable thought And in a basin black and small

The breeze-like motion and the self-born carol; Receives a lofty waterfall.

Thou fairy voyager! that dost float

In such clear water, that thy boat
VI.

May rather seem
With staff in hand across the cleft

To brood on air than on an earthly stream; The challenger began his march;

Suspended in a stream as clear as sky, And now, all eyes and feet, hath gained

Where earth and heaven do make one imagery; The middle of the arch.

O blessed vision! happy child! & When list! he hears a piteous moan

That art so exquisitely wild, Again!-his heart within him dies

I think of thee with many fears His pulse is stopped, his breath is lost,

For what may be thy lot in future years. He totters, pale as any ghost,

I thought of times when pain might be thy guest, And, looking down, he spies

Lord of thy house and hospitality; A lamb, that in the pool is pent

And grief, uneasy lover! never rest Within that black and frightful rent.

But when she sate within the touch of thee.

Oh! too industrious folly!
VII.

Oh! vain and causeless melancholy!
The lamb had slipped into the stream,

Nature will either end thee quite; * And safe without a bruise or wound

Or, lengthening out thy season of delight, The cataract had borne him down

Preserve for thee, by individual right, Into the gulph profound.

A young lamb's heart among the full-grown flocks. His dam had seen him when he fell,

What hast thou to do with sorrow, She saw him down the torrent borne;

Or the injuries of to-morrow? And, while with all a mother's love

Thou art a dew-drop, which the morn brings forth, She from the lofty rocks above

Not framed to undergo unkindly shocks; Sent forth a cry forlorn,

Or to be trailed along the soiling earth; The lamb, still swimming round and round,

A gem that glitters while it live Made answer to that plaintive sound.

And no forewarning gives;

But, at the touch of wrong, without a strife
VIII.

Slips in a moment out of life.
When he Kearnt what thing it was,
That sent this rueful cry; I ween,
The boy recovered heart, and told

THE FEMALE VAGRANT.
The sigbe:Which he had seen.

My father was a good and pious man, now deferred their task;

An honest man by honest parents bred, Nor was there wanting other aid,

And I believe that, soon as I began who loves the brooks

To lisp, he made me kneel beside my bed, Far better ician the sages' books,

And in his hearing there my prayers I said:

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Both gladly

A poet, one

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