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Then to widen the ranks, and give more room for their weapons ;
So he won the day, the battle of something-or-other.
That's what I always say: if you wish a thing to be well done,

You must do it yourself, you must not leave it to others !"

All was silent again; the Captain continued his reading.

Nothing was heard in the room but the hurrying pen of the stripling

Writing epistles important to go next day by the Mayflower,
Filled with the name and the fame of the Puritan maiden Priscilla ;

Every sentence began or closed with the name of Priscilla,

Till the treacherous pen, to which he confided the secret,
Strove to betray it by singing and shouting the name of Priscilla !

Finally closing his book, with a bang of the ponderous cover,
Sudden and loud as the sound of a soldier grounding his musket,

Thus to the young man spake Miles Standish, the Captain of Plymouth:

“When you have finished your work, I have something important to tell you.

Be not, however, in haste; I can wait; I shall not be impatient!"

Straightway Alden replied, as he folded the last of his letters,
Pushing his papers aside, and giving respectful attention:

Speak; for whenever you speak, I am always ready to listen,

Always ready to hear whatever pertains to Miles Standish.”

Thereupon answered the Captain, embarrassed, and culling his phrases:

“ 'Tis not good for a man to be alone, say the Scriptures.

This I have said before, and again and again I repeat it;

Every hour in the day, I think it, and feel it, and say it.

Since Rose Standish died, my life has been weary and dreary;
Sick at heart have I been, beyond the healing of friendship.

Oft in my lonely hours have I thought of the maiden Priscilla.
She is alone in the world; her father and mother and brother

Died in the winter together; I saw her going and coming,
Now to the grave of the dead, and now to the bed of the dying,

Patient, courageous, and strong, and said to myself, that if ever

There were angels on earth, as there are angels in heaven,

Two have I seen and known; and the angel whose name is Priscilla

Holds in my desolate life the place which the other abandoned.

Long have I cherished the thought, but never have dared to reveal it,

Being a coward in this, though valiant enough for the most part.

Go to the damsel Priscilla, the loveliest maiden of Plymouth,

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