She sees it back in the clean-swept kitchen, O, sweet the tunes, the talk, the laughter ! A part of her girlhood's little world ;

They fill the hour with a glowing tide ;
Her mother is there by the window, stitching; But sweeter the still, deep moments after,
Spindle buzzes, and reel is whirled

When she is alone by Benjie's side.
With many a click : on her little stool
She sits, a child, by the open door,

But once with angry words they part :
Watching, and dabbling her feet in the pool

0, then the weary, weary days ! Of sunshine spilled on the gilded floor

Ever with restless, wretched heart,

Plying her task, she turns to gaze Her sisters are spinning all day long ;

Far up the road ; and early and late To her wakening sense the first sweet warning She harks for a footstep at the door, Of daylight come is the cheerful song

And starts at the gust that swings the gate, To the hum of the wheel in the early morning. And prays for Benjie, who comes no more. Benjie, the gentle, red-cheeked boy, On his way to school, peeps in at the gate ;

Her fault? 0 Benjie, and could you steel In neat white pinafore, pleased and coy,

Your thoughts toward one who loved you so ? She reaches a hand to her bashful mate;

Solace she seeks in the whirling wheel,

In duty and love that lighten woe; And under the elms, a prattling pair,

Striving with labor, not in vain, Together they go, through glimmer and To drive away the dull day's dreariness, gloom :

Blessing the toil that blunts the pain It all comes back to her, dreaming there

Of a deeper grief in the body's weariness. In the low-raftered garret-room ; The hum of the wheel, and the summer weather, Proud and petted and spoiled was she :

The heart's first trouble, and love's beginning, A word, and all her life is changed !
Are all in her memory linked together ;

His wavering love too easily
And now it is she herself that is spinning. In the great, gay city grows estranged :

One year : she sits in the old church pew;
With the bloom of youth on cheek and lip,

A rustle, a murmur, – 0 Dorothy! hide Turning the spokes with the flashing pin, Your face and shut from your soul the view Twisting the thread from the spindle-tip,

'T is Benjie leading a white-veiled bride! Stretching it out and winding it in, To and fro, with a blithesome tread,

Now father and mother have long been dead, Singing she goes, and her heart is full,

And the bride sleeps under a churchyard stone, And many a long-drawn golden thread

And a bent old man with grizzled head Of fancy is spun with the shining wool. Walks up the long dim aisle alone.

Years blur to a mist; and Dorothy Her father sits in his favorite place,

Sits doubting betwixt the ghost she seem. Puffing his pipe by the chimney-side ; And the phantom of youth, more real than she, Through curling clouds his kindly face

That meets her there in that haunt of dreams Glows upon her with love and pride. Lilled by the wheel, in the old arm-chair

Bright young Dorothy, idolized daughter, Her mother is musing, cat in lap,

Sought by many a youthful adorer, With beautiful drooping head, and hair Life, like a new-risen dawn on the water, Whitening under hier snow-white cap.

Shining an endless vista before her!

Old Maid Dorothy, wrinkled and gray, One by one, to the grave, to the bridal,

Groping under the farm-house eaves,
They have followed her sisters from the door ; And life was a brief November day
Now they are old, and she is their idol :

That sets on a world of withered leaves !
It all comes back on her heart once more.
In the autumn dusk the hearth gleams brightly, Yet faithfulness in the humblest part
The wheel is set by the shadowy wall,

Is better at last than proud success,
A hand at the latch, -- 't is lifted lightly, And patience and love in a chastened heart
And in walks Benjie, manly and tall.

Are pearls more precious than happiness ;

And in that morning when she shall wake His chair is placed ; the old man tips

To the spring-time freshness of youth again, The pitcher, and brings his choicest fruit ; All trouble will seem but a flying flake, Benjie basks in the blaze, and sips,

And lifelong sorrow a breath on the pane. And tells his story, and joints his flute :



He died about



Upstairs might they venture, in dirt and in


To peep at the door of the wonderful room (A singular man, named Nathaniel Bentley, for many years kept Such stories are told about, none of them true! a large hardware-shop in Leadenhall Street, London. He was The keyhole itself has no mortal seen through. best known as Dirty Dick (Dick, for alliteration's sake, probably). and his place of business as the Dirty Warehouse. the year 1809. These verses accord with the accounts respecting That room, forty years since, folk settled and himself and his house.)

decked it.

The luncheon 's prepared, and the guests are In a dirty old house lived a Dirty Old Man ;

expected. Soap, towels, or brushes were not in his plan.

The handsome young host he is gallant and gay, For forty long years, as the neighbors declared,

For his love and her friends will be with him. His house never once had been cleaned or re

to-day. paired.

With solid and dainty the table is drest, 'T was a scandal and shame to the business-like The wine beams its brightest, the Aowers bloom street,

their best ; One terrible blot in a ledger so neat :

Yet the host need not smile, and no guests wil The shop full of hardware, but black as a hearse, And the rest of the mansion a thousand times for his sweetheart is dead, as he shortly shall


hear. Outside, the old plaster, all spatter and stain,

Full forty years since turned the key in that Looked spotty in sunshine and streaky in rain ;

door. The window-sills sprouted with mildewy grass, 'T is a room deaf and dumb mid the city's uproar. And the panes from being broken were known to The guests, for whose joyance that table was be glass.


May now enter as ghosts, for they 're every one On the rickety sign-board no learning could spell

dead. The merchant who sold, or the goods he'd to

Through a chink in the shutter dim lights come But for house and for man a new title took growth,

The seats are in order, the dishes a-row : Like a fungus, – the Dirt gave its name to them But the luncheon was wealth to the rat and the both.

Whose descendants have long left the Dirty Old Within, there were carpets and cushions of dust, House. The wood was half rot, and the metal half rust, Old curtains, half cobwebs, hung grimly aloof; Cup and platter are masked in thick layers of 'T was a Spiders' Elysium from cellar to roof.

The flowers fallen to powder, the wine swathed There, king of the spiders, the Dirty Old Man

in crust; Lives busy and dirty as ever he can ;

A nosegay was laid before one special chair, With dirt on his fingers and dirt on his face, And the faded blue ribbon that bound it lies For the Dirty Old Man thinks the dirt no dis

there. grace.

The old man has played out his part in the scene. From his wig to his shoes, from his coat to his Wherever he now is, I hope he 's more clean. shirt,

Yet give we a thought free of scoffing or ban His clothes are a proverb, a marvel of dirt ;

To that Dirty Old House and that Dirty Old The dirt is pervading, unfading, exceeding,

Man. Yet the Dirty Old Man has both learning and breeding.

AN EXPERIENCE AND A MORAL. Fine dames from their carriages, noble and fair, Have entered his shop, less to buy than to stare ; I lent my love a book one day ; And have afterwards said, though the dirt was She brought it back; 1 laid it by : so frightful,

'T was little either had to say, The Dirty Man's manners were truly delightful. She was so strange, and I so shy.

sell ;

and go;




But yet we loved indifferent things,

The sprouting buds, the birds in tune, – And Time stood still and wreathed his wings

With rosy links from June to June.

Many a night from yonder ivied casement, ere I

went to rest, Did I look on great Orion sloping slowly to the


could see,

For her, what task to dare or do ?

Many a night I saw the Pleiads, rising through What peril tempt? what hardship bear ?

the mellow shade, But with her ah! she never knew

Glitter like a swarm of fire-flies tangled in a silver My heart, and what was hidden there!

braid. And she, with me, so cold and coy,

Here about the beach I wandered, nourishing a Seemed a little maid bereft of sense ;

youth sublime But in the crowd, all life and joy,

With the fairy tales of science, and the long And full of blushful impudence.

result of time; She married, — well, - a woman needs

When the centuries behind me like a fruitful A mate, her life and lo to share,

land reposed ; And little cares sprang up like weeds

When I clung to all the present for the promise And played around ner elbow-chair.

that it closed ; And years rolled by, — but I, content,

When I dipt intc the future far as human eye Trimmed my own lamp, and kept it bright, Till age's touch my hair besprent

Saw the vision of the world, and ali the wonder With rays and gleams of silver light.

that would be. And then it chanced I took the book

In the spring a fuller crimson comes upon the Which she perused in days gone by ;

robin's breast; And as I read, such passion shook

In the spring the wanton lapwing gets himself My soul, -- I needs must curse or cry.

another crest ; For, here and there, her love was writ,

In the spring a livelier iris changes on the In old, half-faded pencil-signs,

burnished dove ; As if she yielded bit by bit

In the spring a young man's fancy lightly turns Her heart in dots and underlines.

to thoughts of love. Ah, silvered fool, too late you look !

Then her cheek was pale and thinner than should I know it ; let me here record

be for one so young, This maxim : Lend no girl a book

And her eyes on all my motions with a mute Unless you read it afterward!

observance hung. And I said, “My cousin Amy, speak, and speak

the truth to me ;

Trust me, cousin, all the current of my being LOCKSLEY HALL.

sets to thee." COMRADES, leave me here a little, while as yet On her pallid cheek and forehead came a color 't is early morn,

and a light, Leave me here, and when you want me, sound as I have seen the rosy red fushing in the upon the bugle horn.

northern night. 'Tis the place, and all around it, as of old, the And she turned, - her bosom shaken with a curlews call,

sudden storm of sighs ; Dreary gleams about the moorland, flying over All the spirit deeply dawning in the dark of

Locksley Hall : Locksley Hall, that in the distance overlooks the Saying, “I have hid my feelings, fearing they sandy tracts,

should do me wrong :" And the hollow ocean-ridges roaring into cata- Saying, “Dost thou love me, cousin ?" weeping,

"I have loved thee long."


hazel eyes,


Love took up the glass of time, and turned it in He will answer to the purpose, easy things to his glowing hands ;

understand, Every moment, lightly shaken, ran itself in Better thou wert dead before me, though I slew golden sands.

theo with my hand. Love took up the harp of life, and smote on all Better thou and I were lying, hidden from the the chords with might;

heart's disgrace, Smote the chord of self, that, trembling, passed Rolled in one another's arms, and silent in a last in music out of sight.


Many a morning on the moorland did we bear the Cursed be the social wants that sin against the copses ring,

strength of youth ! And her whisper thronged my pulses with the Cursed be the social lies that warp us from the fulness of the spring.

living truth!

Many an evening by the waters did we watch the Cursed be the sickly forms that err from honest stately ships,

nature's rule ! And our spirits rushed together at the touching Cursed be the gold that gilds the straitened foreof the lips.

head of the fool ! 0 my cousin, shallow-hearted ! O my Amy, Well – 't is well that I should bluster ! Hadst mine no more !

thou less unworthy proved, O the dreary, dreary moorland ! O the barren, Would to God — for I had loved thee more than barren shore !

ever wife was loved.

have sing,

Falser than all fancy fathoms, falser than all songs Am I mad, that I should cherish that which

bears but bitter fruit ? Puppet to a father's threat, and servile to a I will pluck it from my bosom, though my heart shrewish tongue !

be at the root.

Is it well to wish thee happy ? — having known Never! though my mortal summers to such length me; to decline

of years should come On a range of lower feelings and a narrower heart As the many-wintered crow that leads the clangthan mine!

ing rookery home.

Yet it shall be : thou shalt lower to his level day Where is comfort ? in division of the records of by day,

the mind ? What is fine within thee growing coarse to sym- Can I part her from herself, and love her, as I pathize with clay.

knew her, kind ?

As the husband is, the wise is ; thou art mated I remember one that perished ;- sweetly did she with a clown,

speak and move ; And the grossness of his nature will have weight Such a one do I remember, whom to look at was to drag thee down.

to love.

He will hold thee, when his passion shall have Can I think of her as dead, and love her for the spent its novel force,

love she bore? Something better than his dog, a little dearer No, she never loved me truly ; love is love than his horse.


What is this ? his eyes are lieavy, - think not. Comfort ? comfort scorned of devils ! this is truth they are glazed with wine.

the poet sings, Go to him ; it is thy duty, — kiss him ; take his That a sorrow's crown of sorrow is remembering hand in thine.

happier things.

It may be my lord is weary, that his brain is Drug thy memories, lest thou learn it, lest thy overwrought,

heart be put to proof, Soothe him with thy finer fancies, touch him in the dead, unhappy night, and when the rain with thy lighter thought.

is on the roof.

earlier page.

Like a dog, he hunts in dreams; and thou art | I had been content to perish, falling on the foe. staring at the wall,

man's ground, Where the dying night-lamp flickers, and the When the ranks are rolled in vapor, and the shadows rise and fall.

winds are laid with sound. Then a hand shall pass before thee, pointing to But the jingling of the guinea helps the hurt his drunken sleep,

that honor feels, To thy widowed marriage-pillows, to the tears And the nations do but murmur, snarling at each that thou wilt weep.

other's heels. Thou shalt hear the “Never, never," whispered Can I but relive in sadness? I will turn that

by the phantom years, And a song from out the distance in the ringing Hide me from my deep emotion, O thou won. of thine ears ;

drous mother-age! And an eye shall vex thee, looking ancient kind- Make me feel the wild pulsation that I felt be. ness on thy pain.

fore the strife, Turn thee, turn thee on thy pillow; get thee to When I heard my days before me, and the tu. thy rest again.

mult of my life ; Nay, but nature brings thee solace; for a tender Yearning for the large excitement that the comvoice will cry ;

ing years would yield, "T is a purer life than thine, a lip to drain thy Eager-hearted as a boy when first he leaves his trouble dry.

father's field,

Baby lips will laugh me down; my latest rival And at night along the dusky highway near and brings thee rest,

nearer drawn, Baby fingers, waxen touches, press me from the Sees in heaven the light of London flaring liko mother's breast.

a dreary dawn;

0, the child too clothes the father with a dear. And his spirit leaps within him to be gone beness not his due.

fore him then, Half is thine and half is his : it will be worthy Underneath the light he looks at, in anong the of the two.

throngs of men ;

0, I see thee old and formal, fitted to thy petty Men, my brothers, men the workers, ever reappart,

ing something new : With a little hoard of maxims preaching down a | That which they have done but earnest of the daughter's heart.

things that they shall do :

“They were dangerous guides, the feelings — she For I dipt into the future, far as human eye herself was not exempt

could see, Truly, she herself had suffered" Perish in thy Saw the vision of the world, and all the wonder self-contempt !

that would be ;

Overlive it - lower yet be happy! wherefore Saw the heavens fill with commerce, argosies of should I care?

magic sails, I myself must mix with action, lest I wither by Pilots of the purple twilight, dropping down with despair.

costly bales;

What is that which I should turn to, lighting Heard the heavens fill with shouting, and there upon days like these?

rained a ghastly dew Every door is barred with gold, and opens but to From the nations' airy navies grappling in the golden keys.

central blue ; Every gate is thronged with suitors, all the Far along the world-wide whisper of the southmarkets overflow.

wind rushing warm, I have but an angry fancy : what is that which with the standards of the peoples plunging I should do ?

1 through the thunder-storm ;

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