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Old Time, whose haste no mortal spares,

Uncall'd, unheeded, unawares,
Brought on his eightieth year.
And now, one night, in musing mood,

As all alone he sate,
Th’ unwelcome messenger of Fate

Once more before him stood.
Half-killed with anger and surprise,
“So soon returned !" old Dobson cries.

“So soon, d'ye call it ?" Death replies : “ Surely, my friend, you're but in jest !

Since I was here before 'Tis six-and-thirty years at least, And

you are now fourscore.” “So much the worse,” the clown rejoin'd; To

spare the agèd would be kind :
However, see your search be legal;
And your authority-is 't regal?
Else you are come on a fool's errand,
With but a secretary's warrant.
Beside, you promis'd me Three Warnings,
Which I have look'd for nights and mornings !
But for that loss of time and ease,
I can recover damages.”

“ I know," cries Death, " that at the best,
I seldom am a welcome guest;
But don't be captious, friend, at least :
I little thought you'd still be able
To stump about

your

farm and stable ; Your years have run to a great length ; I wish you joy, tho', of your strength!" “Hold,” says the farmer, “not too fast, "" I have been lame these four years past.”

“And no great wonder,” Death replies; However, you still keep your eyes; And sure, to see one's loves and friends, For legs and arms would make amends." "Perhaps," says Dobson, "so it might, But latterly, I've lost my sight.”

66

“This is a shocking story, faith;
Yet there's some comfort still,” says Death:
“Each strives your sadness to amuse;
I warrant you hear all the news.”

“ There's none,” cries he; "and if there were,
I'm grown so deaf, I could not hear.”
“Nay, then! the spectre stern rejoin'd,

"These are unjustifiable yearnings; If

you are lame, and deaf, and blind,

You've had your three sufficient warnings.
So come along, no more we'll part:"-
He said, and touch'd him with his dart;
And now, old Dobson, turning pale,
Yields to his fate-so ends

my

tale.

CHOOSE THE RIGHT ONE.

MRS. PARTON.

The moon looked down upon no fairer sight than Effie May, as she lay sleeping on her little couch, that fair summer night. So thought her mother, as she glided gently in, to give her a silent, good-night blessing. The bright flush of youth and hope was on her cheek. Her long dark hair lay in masses about her neck and shoulders ; a smile played upon the red lips, and the mother bent low to catch the indistinct murmur. She starts at the whispered name, as if a serpent had stung her; and as the little snowy hand is tossed restlessly upon the coverlid, she sees, glittering in the moonbeams, on that childish finger, the golden signet of betrothal. Sleep sought in vain to woo the eyes of the mother that night. Reproachfully she asked herself, “How could I have been so blind ? (but then Effie has seemed to me only a child)! But he! oh, no; the grog shop will be my child's rival; it must not be.” Effie was wilful, and Mrs. May knew she must be cautiously dealt with ; but she knew, also, that no mother need despair, who possesses the affection of her child.

Effie's violet eyes opened to greet the first ray of the morning sun, as he peeped into her room. She stood at the little mirror, gathering up, with those small hands, the rich tresses so impatient of confinement. How could she fail to know that she was fair ?—she read it in every face she met; but there was one (and she was hastening to meet him) whose eye had noted, with a lover's pride, every shining ringlet, and azure vein, and flitting blush; his words were soft and low, and skilfully chosen, and sweeter than music to her ear; and so she tied, with a careless grace, the little straw hat under her dimpled chin; and fresh, and sweet, and guileless, as the daisy that bent beneath her foot, she tripped lightly on to the old trysting place by the willows.

Stay! a hand is laid lightly upon her arm, and the pleading voice of a mother arrests that springing step.

“Effie dear, sit down with me on this old garden seat; give up your walk for this morning; I slept but indifferently last night, and morning finds me languid and depressed.”

A shadow passed over Effie's face; the little cherry lips pouted, and a rebellious feeling was busy at her heart; but one look in her mother's pale face decided her, and, untying the strings of her hat, she leaned her head caressingly upon her mother's shoulder.

“You are ill, dear mother; you are troubled ;" and she looked inquiringly up into her face.

“ Listen to me, Effie, I have a story to tell you of myself:-When I was about your age, I formed an acquaintance with a young man, by the name of Adolph. He had been but a short time in the vlllage, but long enough to win the hearts of half the young girls, from their rustic admirers. Handsome, frank, and social, he found himself everywhere a favourite. He would sit by me for hours, reading our favourite authors; and

a

side by side, we rambled through all the lovely paths with which our village abounded. My parents knew nothing to his disadvantage, and were equally charmed as myself with his cultivated refinement of manner, and the indefinable interest with which he invested every topic, grave or gay, which it suited his mood to discuss. Before I knew it, my heart was no longer in my own keeping. One afternoon, he called to accompany me upon a little excursion we had planned together. As he came up the gravel walk, I noticed that his fine hair was in disorder; a pang, keen as death, shot through my heart, when he approached me, with reeling, unsteady step, and stammering tongue. I could not speak. The chill of death gathered round my heart. I fainted. When I recovered, he was gone, and my mother's face was bending over me, moist with tears. Her woman's heart knew all that was passing in mine. She pressed her lips to my forehead, and only said, "God strengthen you to choose the right, my child.'

"I could not look upon her sorrowful eyes, or the pleaded face of my grey-haired father, and trust myself again to the witchery of that voice and smile. A letter came to me; I dared not read it. (Alas! my heart pleaded too eloquently, even then, for his return.) I returned it unopened; my father and mother devoted themselves to lighten the load that lay upon my heart; but the perfume of a flower, a remembered strain of music, a struggling moonbeam, would bring back old memories, with a crushing bitterness that swept all before it for the moment, But

my father's aged hand lingered on my head with a blessing, and my mother's voice had the sweetness of an angel's, as it fell upon

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my ear!

“ Time passed on, and I had conquered myself. Your father saw me, and proposed for my hand; my parents left me free to choose, and Effie dear, are we not happy ?

“Oh, mother," said Effie, then looking sorrowfully in her face,“ did you never see Adolph again ?"

ing her

“Do you remember, my child, the summer evening we sat upon the piazza, when a dusty, travel-stained man came up the steps, and begged for a supper?' Do you recollect his bloated, disfigured face ? Effie, that was Adolph!“Not that wreck of a man, mother ?" said Effie, cover

eyes with her hands, as if to shut him out from her sight.

“Yes; that was all that remained of that glorious intellect, and that form made after God's own image. I looked around upon my happy home, then upon your noble father-then-upon him, and” (taking Effie's little hand, and pointing to the ring that encircled it) in your ear, my daughter, I now breathe

my

mother's prayer for me — God help you to choose the right !'

The bright head of Effie sank upon her mother's breast, and with a gush of tears she drew the golden circlet from her finger, and placed it in her mother's hand.

“God bless you, my child," said the happy mother, as she led her back to their quiet home.

THE CHILD AND THE STARS.

J. E. CARPENTER.

"They tell me, dear father, each gem in the sky

That sparkles at night is a star;
But why do they dwell in those regions so high,

And shed their cold lustre so far ?
I know that the sun makes the blossoms to spring,

That it gives to the flow'rets their birth,
But what are the stars ? do they nothing but fling

Their cold rays of light upon earth ?”
“My child, it is said, that yon stars in the sky,

Are worlds that are fashioned like this,

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