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I think of human sorrow

But as of clouds that brood Upon the bosom of the day, And the next moment pass away ; And with a trusting heart I say

Thank God, all things are good!


And when they hoot and when they shout,
'Tis woe to the wood-mice all about,
And when the fires of their eyes appear,
The weak liule birds they quake for fear,
For they know that the owls, with a fierce delight,
Riot and feast, like lords, at night.

Oh bush, of ivy-trees the prime,
Men find thee out at winter time,
From the distant town through frost and snow
To the woods of Winter-burn they go;
And if care were killed by an ivy-bough,
What a killer of care, old tree, wert thou !
And high in the hall, with laughter merry,
They hang thy twigs with their powdered berry;
And the red-gemmed holly they mix also,
With the spectral branches of misseltoe.
Rare old tree! and the cottage small
Is decked as well as the baron's hall,
For the children's hands are busy and fair
To dress up the little window.pane,
And set in the chinks of the roof-tree wood
The holly and ivy, green and good.

"Twere well for us, thou rare old tree, Could we gladden the human heart like thee; Like thee and the holly, that thus make gay The lowliest cot for a winter's day!

THE stock-dove builds in the old oak wood,
The rook in the elm-tree rears his brood;
The owl in a ruin doth hoot and stare ;
The mavis and merle build everywhere ;
But not for these will we go to-day,
"Tis the pheasant that lures us hence away ;
The beautiful pheasant that loves to be
Where the young, green birches are waving free.


The summer sun is shining

Upon a world so bright!
The dew upon each grassy blade ;
The golden light, the depth of shade,
All seem as they were only made

To minister delight.
From giant trees, strong branched,

And all their veinèd leaves ;
From little birds that madly sing ;
From insects futtering on the wing;
Ay, from the very meanest thing

My spirit joy receives.
I think of angel voices

When the birds' songs I hear;
Of that celestial city, bright
With jacinth, gold, and chrysolite,
When, with its blazing pomp of light,

The morning doth appear !
I think of that great River

That from the Throne flows free; Of weary pilgrims on its brink, Who, thirsting, have come down to drink; Of that unfailing Stream I think,

When earthly streams I see! I think of pain and dying,

As that which is but nought, When glorious morning, warm and bright, With all its voices of delight, From the chill darkness of the night, Like a new life, is brought.

Away to the woods with the silvery rind,
And the emerald tresses afloat on the wind !
For 'tis joy to go to those sylvan bowers
When summer is rich with leaves and flowers;
And to see, 'mid the growth of all lovely things,
The joyous pheasant unfold his wings,
And then cower down, as if to screen
His gorgeous purple, gold, and green!
The streams run on in music low,
'T will be joy by their flowery banks to go;
"T will be joy to come to the calamus beds,
Where a broken root such odour sheds ;
And to see how the water-sedge uplitis
Its spires and crowns - - the summer's gifts ;
To see the loosestrife's purple spear,
And the wind through the waving reeds to hear.
Then on through hazelly lanes away
To the light green fields all clear of hay,
Where along the thick hedge-side we greet,
Tall purple vetch and meadow-sweet;
Past old farm-house and water-mill,
Where the great colt’s-foot grows wild at will;
Where the water-rat swirns calm and cool,
And pike bask in the deep mill-pool.
So on and away to the mossy moor,
Stretching on for many a mile before,
A far-seen wild, where all around
Some rare and beautiful thing is found ;
Green mosses many, and sundew red,
And the cotton-rush with its plumy head;
The spicy sweet-gale loved so well,
And golden wastes of the asphodel !

Yet on and on, o'er the springy mass, –
We have yet the bog-rush bed to cross ;
And then a-nigh, all shimmering green
To the sunny breeze, are the birch-woods seen,
Than the green birch-wood a lovelier spot
In the realms of fairy-land was not !
And the pheasant is there all life, all grace,
The lord of this verdurous dwelling-place.

Oh! beautiful bird, in thy stately pride,
Thou wast made in a waste of flowers to hide,
And to fling to the sun the glorious hues
Of thy rainbow-gold, thy green and blues !
Yes, beautiful pheasant, the birch-wood bowers,
Rich many-formed leaves, bright-tinted flowers,
Broad masses of shade, and the sunshine free,
In thy gorgeous beauty are meet for thee!

HARVEST.FIELD FLOWERS. Come down into the harvest-fields

This autumn morn with me; For in the pleasant autumn-fields

There 's much to hear and see; On yellow slopes of waving corn

The autumn sun shines clearly ; And 't is joy to walk, on days like this,

Among the bearded barley. Within the sunny harvest-fields

We 'll gather flowers enow; The poppy red, the marigold,

The bugles brightly blue; We'll gather the white convolvulus

That opes in the morning early; With a cluster of nuts, an ear of wheat,

And an ear of the bearded barley.

Bright over the golden fields of corn

Doth shine the autumn sky; So let's be merry while we may,

For time goes hurrying by. They took down the sickle from the wall

When morning dews shone pearly ; And the mower whets the ringing scythe

To cut the bearded barley.
Come then into the harvest-fields;

The robin sings his song ;
The corn stands yellow on the hills,

And autumn stays not long.
They 'll carry the sheaves of corn away;

They carried to-day so early, Along the lanes, with a rustling sound,

Their loads of the bearded barley.

The sea is fresh, the sea is fair,

And the sky calm overhead,
And the sea-gull lies on the deep, deep sea,

Like a king in his royal bed!
Oh the white sea-gall, the bold sea-gull,

A joyful bird is he,
Sitting, like a king, in calm repose

On the breast of the heaving sea!
The waves leap up, the wild wind blows,

And the gulls together crowd,
And wheel about, and madly scream

To the sea that is roaring loud ; And let the sea roar ever so loud,

And the winds pipe ever so high, With a wilder joy the bold sea.gull,

Sendeth forth a wilder cry, —
For the sea-gull he is a daring bird,

And he loves with the storm to sail;
To ride in the strength of the billowy sea;

And to breast the driving gale!
The little boat she is tossed about,

Like a sea-weed, to and fro;
The tall ship reels like a drunken man,

As the gusty tempests blow.
But the sea-gull laughs at the pride of man,

And sails in a wild delight
On the torn-up breast of the night-black sea,

Like a foam-cloud, calm and white.
The waves may rage and the winds may roar,

But he fears not wreck nor need,
For he rides the sea, in its stormy strength,

As a strong man rides his steed!
Oh the white sea-gull, the bold sea-gull!

He makes on the shore his nest,
And he tries what the inland fields may be ;

But he loveth the sea the best!
And away from land, a thousand leagues

He goes 'mid surging foam;
What matter to him is land or shore,

For the sea is his truest home!
And away to the north 'mong ice-rocks stem,

And among the frozen snow,
To a sea that is lone and desolate,

Will the wanton sea-gull go.
For he careth not for the winter wild,

Nor those desert-regions chill;
In the midst of the cold, as on calm, blue seas,

The sea.gull hath its will! And the dead whale lies on the northern shores,

And the seal, and the sea-horse grim,
And the death of the great sea-creature makes

A full, merry feast for him!
Oh the wild sea-gull, the bold sea-gull!

As he screams in his wheeling flight:
As he sits on the waves in storm or calm

All cometh to him aright!
All cometh to him as he liketh best ;

Nor any his will gainsay;
And he rides on the waves like a bold, young king,

That was crowned but yesterday! The Gull, notwithstanding the gormandizing and rather disgusting character given of it hy Bewick,


On the white sea-gull, the wild sea-gull,

A joyful bird is he,
As he lies like a cradled thing at rest,

In the arms of a sunny sea !
The little waves rock to and fro,

And the white gull lies asleep,
As the fisher's bark, with breeze and tide,

Goes merrily over the deep.
The ship, with her fair sails set, goes by,

And her people stand to note,
How the sea-gull siis on the rocking waves

As still as an anchored boat.

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figures beautifully in his inimitable wood-cuts; giving the very spirit of wildness and freshness to his sea. side sketches.

The Gull may occasionally be found far inland, domesticated in old-fashioned gardens, where it is an indulged and amusing habitant, feeding on slugs and worms, and becoming thus a useful assistant to the gardener. In this state it seems entirely to throw off its wild native character, and assumes a sort of mock. heroic style, which is often quite ludicrous. We have seen one strutting about the straight alleys of such a garden, with the most formal, yet conscious air imaginable, glancing first to one side, then to the other, evidently aware of your notice, yet pretending to be busied about his own concerns. It was impossible to conceive that this bird, walking “ in his dig. nified way," upon his two stiff little legs, and so full of self-importance, had ever been a free, wild, winged creature, wheeling about and screaming in the storm, or riding gracefully upon the sunshiny waters. His nature had undergone a land-change; he was transformed into the patron of poodles, and the conde scending companion of an old black cat. With these creatures, belonging to the same place, he was on very friendly terms, maintaining, nevertheless, an air of superiority over them, which they permitted, either out of pure good-nature, or because their simplicity was imposed upon. They were all frequently fed from the same plate, but the quadrupeds never presumed to put in their noses till the Gull was satisfied, and to his credit it may be told, that he was not insatiable, although a reasonably voracious bird on ordinary occasions.

We saw last summer, also, a Gull well known to northern tourists, which for twenty years has inhabited one of the inner green-courts at Alnwick Castle, and has outlived two or three companions. It is an interesting bird, of a venerable appearance; but, as it has been described in books, more need not be said of it.

In one of the towers of this same Castle, also, we were shown a pair of perfect bird-skeletong, under a glass shade, the history of which is mysterious. They are the skeletons of a pair of jackdaws, which had built in one of the upper towers of the Castle, and had been found in their present state, apparently nestled together. From the account given us by the porter, an intelligent old man, they appeared not to have been discovered in any confined place, where they might have died from starvation, but by their own tower, on the open roof, as if they had been death-stricken side by side.

I cannot tell you half the sights

Of beauty you may see,
The bursts of golden sunshine,

And many a shady tree.
There, lightly swung, in bowery glades,

The honey-suckles twine ;
There blooms the rose-red campion,

And the dark-blue columbine.
There grows the four-leaved plant“ true love,"

In some dusk woodland spot;
There grows the enchanter's night-shade,

And the wood forget-me-not.
And many a merry bird is there,

Unscared by lawless men;
The blue-winged jay, the wood-pecker,

And the golden-crested wren.
Come down and ye shall see them all,

The timid and the bold;
For their sweet life of pleasantness,

It is not to be told.
And far within that summer-wood,

Among the leaves so green,
There flows a liule gurgling brook,

The brightest e'er was seen.
There come the little gentle birds,

Without a fear of ill;
Down to the murmuring water's edge,

And freely drink their fill!
And dash about and splash about,

The merry little things;
And look askance with bright black eyes,

And flirt their dripping wings.
I've seen the freakish squirrel drop

Down from their leafy tree,
The little squirrels with the old,

Great joy it was to me!
And down unto the running brook,

I've seen them nimbly, go;
And the bright water seemed to speak

A welcome kind and low.
The nodding plants they bowed their heads,

As if, in heartsome theer, They spake unto those little things,

“ 'Tis merry living here!"
Oh, how my heart ran o'er with joy!

I saw that all was good,
And how we might glean up delight
All round us,

if we would !
And many a wood-mouse dwelleth there,

Beneath the old wood-shade,
And all day long has work to do,

Nor is, of aught, afraid.
The green shoots grow above their heads,

And roots so fresh and fine, Beneath their feet, nor is there strife 'Mong them for mine and thine.


Come ye into the summer-woods ;

There entereth no annoy ; All greenly wave the chestnut leaves,

And the earth is full of joy.

There is enough for every one,

But now and then might with him be seen, And they lovingly agree;

Two other old men with look profound, We might learn a lesson, all of us,

Who peered 'mong the leaves of the mandrake green Beneath the green-wood tree!

And lightened with care the soil around.
For the king was sick and of help had need;

Or he had a foe whom art must quell,

So he sent to the learned man with speed

To gather for him a mandrake-spell

. THERE once was a garden grand and old, And at night when the moon was at the full,

Ils stately walks were trodden by few; When the air was still and the stars were out, And there, in its driest and deepest mould, Came the three the mandrake root to pull,

The dark-green, poisonous mandrake grew. With the help of the ban-dog fierce and stout. That garden's lord was a leamed man,

Oh, the mandrake-root! and they listened all three, It is of an ancient time we tell, –

For awful sounds, and they spoke no word, He was grim and stern, with a visage wan,

And when the owl screeched from the hollow tree, And had books which only he could spell. They said 'twas the mandrake's groan they heard. He had been a monk in his younger days,

And words they muttered, but what none knew, They said, and travelled by land and sea,

With motion slow of hand and foot; And now, in his old, ancestral place,

Then into the cave the three withdrew,
He was come to study in privacy.

And carried with them the mandrake root.
A garden it was both large and lone,
And in it was temple, cave and mound;

They all were scholars of high degree,
The trees were with ivy overgrown,

So they took the root of the mandrake fell, And the depth of its lake no line had found.

And cut it and carved it hideously,

And muttered it into a charmed spell.
Some said that the springs of the lake lay deep
Under the fierce volcano's root;

Then who had been there, by dawn of day,
For the water would oft-times curl and leap, Might have seen the two from the grated door
When the summer air was calm and mute. Speed forth; and as sure as they went away,

The charmed mandrake root they bore. And all along o'er its margin dank

Hung massy branches of evergreen; And the old lord up in his chamber sat,
And among the pebbles upon the bank

Blessing himself, sedate and mute,
The playful water-snakes were seen. That he thus could gift the wise and great
And yąw-trees old, in the alleys dim,

With more than gold — the mandrake root.
Were cut into dragon-shapes of dread;
And in midst of shadow, grotesque and grim,

The reverence attached to the mandrake may be Stood goat-limbed statues of sullen lead. classed among the very oldest of superstitions, for the

Hebrews of the patriarchial ages regarded it as a The garden-beds they were long, and all

plant of potent influence. The Greeks, who held it With a tangle of flowers were overgrown; in the same estimation, called it after Circe, their cel. And each was screened with an ancient wall,

ebrated witch, and also after Atropos, the eldest of Or para pet low of mossy stone.

the three Fates. The Romans adopted the same And from every crevice and broken ledge opinions respecting it, and Pliny relates the ceremo

The harebell blue and the wall-Power sprung; nies which were used in obtaining the root. And from the wall, to the water's edge,

In the middle ages, when the traditional superstiWild masses of tendrilled creepers hung;

tions of the ancients were grafted upon the popular

ignorance, the mandrake was a powerful engine in For there was a moat outside where slept the hands of the crafty.

Deep waters with slimy moss grown o'er, It was believed that when the mandrake was taken And a wall and a tower securely kept

from the earth, it uttered a dreadful shriek; and that By a ban-dog fierce at a grated door. any human being who was presumptuous enough to This garden's lord was a scholar wise,

remove it, was suddenly struck dead. Dogs, thereA scholar wise, with a learned look ;

fore, were used for this purpose. The earth was He studied by night the starry skies,

carefully lightened, and the plant fastened to the ani. And all day long some ancient book.

mal's tail; he was then made to draw it forth, and

pay whatever penalty the demon of the plant thought There were lords hard by who lived by spoil, fit to impose upon the disturber of his rest. The pre

But he did the men of war eschew; tenders to medical skill in those days made great proThere were lowly serfs who tilled the soil, fit by the little hideous images which they fashioned But with toiling serfs he had nought to do. out of the mandrake root, and sold as charms against every kind of sickness and misfortune. They were brought over from Germany in the reign of Henry

THE HEDGE-HOG. the VIII., under the name of Abrunes, and by the Thou poor little English porcupine, help of certain pretended magical words, the know

What a harassed and weary life is thine! ledge of which the credulous obtained at a great And thou art a creature meek and mild, price, were said to increase whatever money was That wouldst not harm a sleeping child. placed near them. It was believed, also, at that time, that the mandrake was produced from the decaying

Thou scarce can'st stir from thy tree-root, flesh of malefactors hung upon the gibbet, and was

But thy foes are up in hot pursuit; to be found only in such situations. Dr. Turner, who

Thou might'st be an asp, or hornèd snake, lived in the time of Queen Elizabeth, declares, that

Thou poor little martyr of the brake! he had divers times taken up the roots of the man. Thou scarce can’st put out that nose of thine ; drake, but had never found them under the gallows; Thou can'st not show a single spine, nor of the form which the pedlars, who sold them in But the urchin-rabble are in a rout, boxes, pretended them to have been. This form was With terrier curs to hunt thee out. that of an ugly little man, with a long beard hanging

The poor Hedgehog! one would think he knew down to his feet. Gerard, the herbalist, also, who

His foes' so many, his friends so few, wrote thirty years later, used many endeavours lo

For when he comes out, he's in a fright, convince the world of the impositions practised upon And hurries again to be out of sight. them, and states, that he and his servant frequently

How unkind the world must seem to him, dug up the roots without receiving harm, or hearing any shrieks whatever.

Living under the thicket dusk and dim, The mandrake grows naturally in Spain, Portugal,

And getting his living among the roots, Italy, and the Levant, and it is also indigenous to

Of the insects small, and dry hedge-fruits. China. It was introduced into this country about How hard it must be, to be kicked about, 1564. It is a handsome plant, and would, in particu- If by chance his prickly back peep out; lar situations, be ornamental to our gardens, indepen- To be all his days misunderstood, dent of the strange, old associations connected with When he could not harm us if he would! it, which would always make it an interesting object.

He's an innocent thing, living under the blame I have seerr it, however, only in one garden, that of

That he merits not, of an evil name ; the King of the Belgians, at Claremont.

He is weak and small, - and all he needs, “It is," says Mr. Phillips, in his pleasant garden

Lies under the hedge among the weeds. companion, the Flora Historica, from which work the above historical notices of the mandrake have been

He robs not man of rest or food, principally taken, “a species of deadly nightshade,

And all that he asks is quietude ; which grows with a long taper root like the parsnip,

To be left by him, as a worthless stone, running three or four feet deep; these roots are fre

Under the dry hedge-bank alone! quently forked, which assisted to enable the old Oh, poor little English porcupine, quacks to give it the shape of a monster. This plant What a troubled and weary life is thine! does not send up a stalk, but, immediately from the I would that my pity thy fues could quell, crown of the mot arises a circle of leaves, which at For thou art ill-used, and meanest well! first stand erect, but when grown to their full size, which is about a foot in length and five inches broad, of an ovate-lanceolate shape, waved at the edges, these spread open and lie on the ground; they are

THE CUCKOO. of a dark-green, and give out a fetid smell. About the month of April the flowers come out among the

“Per! pee! pee!" says the merry Pee-Bind; leaves, each on a scape about three inches long; they

And as soon as the children hear it, are of a bell shape with a long tube, and spread out

The Cuckoo 's a-coming," they say, “ for I heard, into a five-cleft corolla. The colour is of an herba: Up in his tree the merry Pee-Bird, ceous white, but frequently has a tinge of purple. The days go on, one, two, three;

And he 'll come in three days, or near it!" The flower is succeeded by a globular soft berry, when full grown, as large as a common cherry, but And the little bird singeth “pee! pee! pee!" of a yellowish-green colour, when ripe and full of

Then on the morrow, 't is very true, pulp, intermixed with numerous reniform seeds."

They hear the note of the old Cuckoo; If any of my readers should wish to cultivate this Up in the elm-tree, through ihe day, plant of “old renown,” they should do it by sowing Just as in gone years, shouting away ; the seed in autumn, soon after it is ripe ; as the seed

“Cuckoo," the Cuckoo doth cry, kept till spring seldom produces plants. It should be

And the little boys mock him as they go by. set in a light, dry soil, and of a good depth, so that. The wood-pecker laughs to hear the strain, the root may not be chilled or obstructed ; and care And says "the old fellow is come back again; should be taken not to disturb it when it has once He sitteih again on the very same tree, obtained a considerable size.

And he talks of himself again!- he!'he! he !"

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