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His diet was of wheaten bread,
And milk, and oats, and straw;
With sand to scour his maw.
On pippins' russet peel,
Sliced carrot pleased him well.
Whereon he loved to bound,
And swing his rump around.
For then he lost his fear,
Or when a storm drew near.
He thus saw steal away,
And every night at play.
For he would oft beguile
And force me to a smile.
He finds his long last home,
Till gentler Puss shall come.
From which no care can save,
Must soon partake his grave.
40. — THE SOLDIER'S DREAM. OUR bugles sang truce—for the night-cloud had lower'd,
And the sentinel stars set their watch in the sky; And thousands had sunk on the ground overpower'd,
The weary to sleep, and the wounded to die. When, reposing that night on my pallet of straw,
By the wolf-scaring faggot that guarded the slain, At the dead of the night, a sweet vision I saw,
And thrice ere the morning I dream'd it again. Methought from the battle-field's dreadful array,
Far, far I had roam'd on a desolate track; 'Twas autumn—and sunshine arose on the way
To the home of my fathers, that welcomed me back. I flew to the pleasant fields, traversed so oft
In life's morning march, when my bosom was young; I heard my own mountain-goats bleating aloft,
And knew the sweet strain that the corn-reapers sung. Then pledged we the wine cup, and fondly I swore,
From my home and my weeping friends never to part; My little ones kiss'd me a thousand times o'er,
And my wife sobb'd aloud in her fulness of heart.
And fain was their war-broken soldier to stay;
41. — THE LORD OF BURLEIGH.
In her ear he whispers gaily,
" And I think thou lov'st me well.” She replies, in accents fainter, “ There is none I love like thee.” He is but a landscape painter, And a village maiden she. He to lips that fondly falter, Presses his without reproof; Leads her to the village altar, And they leave her father's roof. “ I can make no marriage present; “ Little can I give my wife: “Love will make our cottage pleasant, “And I love thee more than life.” They by parks and lodges going, See the lordly castles stand: Summer woods about them blowing, Made a murmur in the land. From deep thought himself he rouses, Says to her that loves him well, “ Let us see these handsome houses “ Where the wealthy nobles dwell.” So she goes, by him attended, Hears him lovingly converse, Sees whatever fair and splendid Lay betwixt his home and hers; Parks with oak and chestnut shady, Parks and ordered gardens great, Ancient homes of lord and lady, Built for pleasure and for state, All he shows her makes him dearer: Evermore she seems to gaze On that cottage growing nearer, Where they twain will spend their days. 0, but she will love him truly !
He shall have a cheerful home ; She will order all things duly, When beneath his roof they come. Thus her heart rejoices greatly, Till a gateway she discerns, With armorial bearings stately, And beneath the gate she turns; Sees a mansion more majestic Than all those she saw before ; Many a gallant gay domestic, Bows before him at the door. And they speak in gentle murmur, When they answer to his call, While he treads with footsteps firmer, Leading on from hall to hall. And while now she wonders blindly, Nor the meaning can divine, Proudly turns he round and kindly, “ All of this is mine and thine," Here he lives in state and bounty, Lord of Burleigh, fair and free, Not a lord in all the county Is so great a lord as he. All at once the colour flushes Her sweet face from brow to chin: As it were with shame the blushes, And her spirit changed within. Then her countenance all over, Pale again as death did prove: But he clasped her like a lover, And he cheered her soul with love. So she strove against her weakness, Though at times her spirits sank; Shaped her heart with woman's meekness,
To all duties of her rank: