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Then when he saw it would hold no more,
Bishop Hatto he made fast the door;
And while for mercy on Christ they call,
He set fire to the barn and burnt them all.
“I'faith, 'tis an excellent bonfire! ” quoth he, “And the country is greatly obliged to me, “For ridding it in these times forlorn “ Of rats, that only consume the corn."
So then to his palace returned he,
And he sat down to supper merrily,
And he slept that night like an innocent man
But Bishop Hatto never slept again.
In the morning as he enter'd the hall,
Where his picture hung against the wall,
A sweat like death all over him came,
For the rats had eaten it out of the frame.
As he look’d there came a man from the farm, He had a countenance white with alarm; “My lord, I open'd your granaries this morn, “ And the rats had eaten all your corn.”
Another came running presently,
And he was pale as pale could be,
“Fly! my lord Bishop, fly,” quoth he,
“ Ten thousand rats are coming this way,
“ The LORD forgive you for yesterday!”
“I'll go to my tower on the Rhine,” replied he, *• 'Tis the safest place in Germany; “The walls are high, and the shores are steep, " And the stream is strong, and the water deep."
Bishop Hatto fearfully hasten'd away,
And he cross'd the Rhine without delay,
And reach'd his tower, and barr'd with care
All the windows, doors, and loopholes there.
Ke laid him down and closed his eyes,
But soon a scream made him arise;
He started, and saw two eyes of flame
On his pillow from whence the screaming came.
He listen'd and look'd; it was only the cat;
But the Bishop he grew more fearful for that,
For she sat screaming, mad with fear,
At the army of rats that was drawing near.
For they have swam over the river so deep,
And they have climb’d the shores so steep,
And up the tower their way is bent
To do the work for which they were sent.
They are not to be told by the dozen or score,
By thousands they come, and by myriads and more;
Such numbers had never been heard of before,
Such a judgment had never been witness'd of yore.
Down on his knees the Bishop fell,
And faster and faster his beads did he tell,
As louder and louder drawing near
The gnawing of their teeth he could hear.
And in at the windows, and in at the door,
And through the walls helter skelter they pour,
And down from the ceiling, and up through the floor,
From the right and the left, from behind and before,
From within and without, from above and below,
And all at once to the Bishop they go.
They have whetted their teeth against the stones,
And now they pick the Bishop's bones ;
They gnaw'd the flesh from every limb,
For they were sent to do judgment on him.
14. — CASIBIANCA;
A TRUE STORY.
The boy stood on the burning deck
Whence all but he had fled;
The flames that lit the battle's wreck
Shone round him o'er the dead.
The flames rollid on. He would not go
Without his father's word;
That father faint in death below,
His voice no longer heard.
He called aloud: “Say, father, say
“ If yet my task is done,”
He knew not that the chieftain lay
Unconscious of his son.
“Speak, father!” once again he cried,
“If I may yet be gone!”.
And but the booming shots replied,
And fast the flames rolld on.
Upon his brow he felt their breath,
And in his waving hair,
And look'd from that lone post of death
In still, yet brave despair;
And shouted but once more aloud,
“My Father! must I stay ? "
While o'er him fast through sail and shroud,
The wreathing fires made way.
They wrapt the ship in splendour wild,
They caught the flag on high,
And streamed above the gallant child
Like banners in the sky.
Then came a burst of thunder sound-
The boy-oh! where was he?
Ask of the winds that far around
With fragments strewed the sea,
With mast, and helm, and pennon fair,
That well had borne their part;
But the noblest thing that perished there
Was that young faithful heart!
15.—“HOW'S MY BOY?” “Ho, sailor of the sea! “How's my boy-my boy?” “What's your boy's name, good wife, “And in what good ship sail'd he?" “My boy John“He that went to sea“What care I for the ship, sailor? “My boy's my boy to me." “ You come back from sea “ And not know my John ? "I might as well have asked some landsman “Yonder down in the town. “ There's not an ass in all the parish “But he knows my John. “How's my boy-my boy? “And unless you let me know “I'll swear you are no sailor,
16.—THE RAINBOW. '
A FRAGMENT of a rainbow bright
Through the moist air I see,
All dark and damp on yonder height,
All bright and clear to me.