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“ When daisies pied, and violets blue,
And lady-smocks all silver white,
Do paint the meadows with delight,
Unpleasing to a married ear!
And merry larks are ploughmen's clocks ;
And maidens bleach their summer smocks;
SHAKSPERE. Love's Labour's Lost. Act v, Scene 2.
We scarcely remember in the English language realities-are daily attendants on our footsteps, any description of Spring and Winter surpassing we can wander into the springing meadows, and in graphic terseness Shakspere's noble lyric hearing the cuckoo, recall those bright times, above quoted; and notwithstanding the some- saying with the bard of Rydal Mount : what scandalous insinuation it contains, venture to think our readers will admire it as we do, and “ Though babbling only to the vale, so during their April rambles, not fearing the
Of sunshine and of flowers, cuckoo's cheerful cry, rather hail the returned Thou bringest unto me a tale wanderer's advent as a sure pledge of approach
Of visionary hours. ing bright days and summer happiness. Often and often have we listened to that invisibly • Thrice welcome, darling of the spring! ubiquitous bird amid the fields of Wensleydale,
Even yet thou art to me in boyhood's hours, vainly wishing for a glimpse
No bird, but an invisible thing of the merry herald, and ever disappointed,
A voice-a mystery. until we almost fancied in our visionary young “ The same when in my schoolboy days heart some strange enchantment hung around
I listen'd to; that cry him, and that we might hear but not behold. Which made me look a thousand ways, Whence he came and whither he went we little
In bush, and tree, and sky. cared to know. He was a part and parcel of
" And I can listen to thee yetthe Spring-a never-failing companion of its dewy flowers. We rejoiced to hear his song
Can lie upon the plain,
And listen till I do beget for song it is—alone by the woodside, or on the That golden time again.". breezy hills; and when they told us he had no
WORDSWORTH. mate and no home, whilst we regarded him as an unfettered, blessed citizen of the wide, wide The year is now rapidly approaching its most world, perhaps our joy was not untinged with admired season; and highly serviceable are those melancholy when we remembered that if like mild invigorating showers, mingling rain with ourself he had no household cares, he must sunshine, which render April weather so prolikewise be a stranger to household love. verbially inconstant. With hundreds of blossoms
Still, though time may have somewhat sobered starting up beneath our feet, and herbage sproutour early raptures, and solemn truths--griming half perceptibly, we cannot wish the genial
drops away, even when they drench our raiment. “ And yet, fair bow, no fabling dreams, Softly they sink into the deep valleys, bearing But words of the Most High, sweet nourishment. Softly they fall along hoary
Have told why first thy robe of beams mountains, bedewing every tree; and when they
Was woven in the sky. cease for a little period, or the glowing sunbeams glint through them, joyously sing birds in tangled
“ When o'er the green undeluged earth,
Heaven's covenant, thou didst shine, shaw and rocky glen, giving melodious welcome to the balmy blessings, and in extreme ecstasy
How came the world's grey fathers forth carolling as if to condense a life-long energy into
To watch thy sacred sign. one glorious hour of song. Never will we blame
“ And when its yellow lustre smil'd the April showers, in thoughtlessness of heart
O'er mountains yet untrod, forgetting their great mission, and like the
Each mother held aloft her child world-wise, overlooking in an unchanging promise To bless the bow of God. its certain fulfilment. As low voices of whispered comfort to weary souls panting heavily after long “ Methinks, thy jubilee to keep, combat, fainting exhausted amid perfected vic
The first-made anthem rang, tory, come these fattening rain-pearls into Earth's On earth deliver'd from the deep, bosom, who, not indeed prostrate with hard
And the first poet sang. conflict, but nevertheless weak in her awakening, hails gladly the life-supporting boon. Dwellers in level countries-heedless ones
" As fresh in yon horizon dark, inhabitants of great cities, stunned through heart
As young thy beauties seem and brain by machine wheels-know not, imagine
As when the eagle from the ark not, the beauty of April weather. To them the
First sported in thy beam. blue hills covered with rich purple heather robes,
“ For faithful to its sacred page, gemmed by thunder-riven crags, are but as minstrel tales. The song of the ascending lark,
Heaven still rebuilds thy span, the whistle of the wheeling plover, aye, the
Nor lets the type grow pale with age
That first spoke peace to man." deep, indescribable sough of the mountain-wind,
CAMPBELL. are heard only in unsubstantial dreams. Lowlanders are indeed surrounded by beauty of a After this splendid burst of deathless poetry, meeker class. They may watch the sky, listen we will not add another word. It would be to the birds, cull fresh flowers, and dance upon worse than superfluous, for a finer tribute was village-greens; but they do not, cannot feel the never rendered in any language to the glorious joy of the mountaineer. Woe for the citizen. rainbow of APRIL. The clash of factory-bells, the sullen roll of Banks of the Yorc. cars, blended with that inly-audible wail of
(To be continued.)
(On seeing a Lady with a Wreath composed of altered through maturer years.
the Wings of the Rose-beetle. Look! a rainbow in its perfect glory spanning Death haunts thy garland, lady ; high he peers the valley! That magnificent arch to which so Above its iris beauty; yet, 'tis hung many divine uses have been assigned in the With summer thoughts : ---of cradling rose, with tears mythologies of barbarous and civilized nations; Of dew impearled, when through the coppice rung all deeply ignorant of the holy sign of a mer- The star-nymph nightingale's lone song; or when ciful covenant vouchsafed to man; yet all—led The jetty merle, Pan of the woodlands he, perhaps by some dim tradition brought from Piped his gold reed, while, in the quiet glen, Shinah's plains, some faint scintillations of
The stream alone danced to his minstrelsy, primeval light-regarding it as a visible union For noon glowed on those green mail wings ; and that between earth and heaven. Iris, the celestial
And other memories of such haunts, still take
A portion from their beauty-and of what messenger, according to the Greeks and Latins,
The myriad-minded man of Avon spake descended always on the rainbow: our Scan- Think 1-fancying in each bright wing lies dinavian ancestors gave to it their imaginary Even " a pang as great as when a giant dies!" guardian, Heindaller. Poets have perpetually
FREDERICK Exoch. sung its beauty; painters have enriched their best pieces with its faint image; philosophers have investigated, and saints devoutly admired its mysterious splendour.
An APHORISM.-(From the Greek of Plato.)
An ordered mind is better than an unregulated one ; " When Science from Creation's face
for an ordered mind is considerate, and a considerate Enchantment's veil withdraws,
mind is consequently good; and its opposite, a mind What lovely visions yield their place which never resists any impulse, is evil.-GEORGE To cold material laws.
J. O. ALLMAN.
On the borders of a dreary wood, in the where few cared to be after nightfall. Gertrude northern part of Germany, stands a little way- feared nothing but doing wrong. Sometimes the side chapel, the bell of which is only tolled when poor girl fancied that it might be wrong to be a funeral goes past. The tolling of a bell is al- | always thinking of Paul Vanderpant; for, dearly ways a melancholy sound; but this, although as she loved her own little circle, she could not loud, and capable of being heard at a con- but feel that he was dearer than all to her; for it siderable distance, has a peculiarly sad and so- is strange how soon such affections outgrow the lemn cadence, as if it knew that it was never in love of kindred! And many a time has she future to speak of anything but death.
knelt down, all alone in the little way-side In a small and pleasant cottage not far from chapel, and prayed to God to keep her from the chapel, there lived, at the time of which we idols ! But Paul was worthy of her, and her write, a young man called Paul Vanderpant. influence-for oh, how great is a woman's inFor many generations his family had occupied Auence who loves and is beloved !-fell upon
bim the same house, and tolled that same melan- like a blessing. choly bell, at intervals few and far between; Widow Hoffman had seen a great deal of while various legends of the now fast-decaying trouble in her day, and although for her chilchapel passed from father to son, and were re- dren's sake she still clung to life, there was a peated with white lips around the midnight shadow upon her heart which would not suffer hearth. More than once it had chanced that the her ever again to enjoy it as she had once done. narrator was interrupted in the most interesting From this cause she had a habit of talking of part of some of those wild tales, and obliged to the world as if it were a very sad and weary go forth into the dark night, and certify to the place, to all of which Gertrude listened with living, by means of the way-side bell, that the filial reverence and an incredulous smile. It dead were going past to their long home. seemed a beautiful world to her, and full of sun
The present proprietor, however, was not one shine! It is a beautiful world for all; and its to care for tales or legends : he had no belief in few days, its wilderness wanderings, make us spirits, and used to laugh at such superstitions prize the sunlight and the flowers all the more ; in a way that made the old gossips of the place or, better still, weans our affections from earth to shudder, and shake their heads at his temerity. that bright and far-off land, where there will be If Paul Vanderpant had of late begun to enter- no more sighing or sorrow. Gertrude’s creed tain serious thoughts that it is not good for man was,
Let us enjoy and be grateful for the preto be alone, it was assuredly some other senti- sent, and trust the future to Him who knoweth ment than fear which engendered them, or he what is best for us, whether it be good or evil. would not have made choice of Gertrude Hoff- Paul Vanderpant, as we have said, was no beman for a companion-unless, indeed, he thought liever in the supernatural, or Gertrude either, with ourselves, that there is no surer charm although the deep reverence of her nature made against the power of the evil one than love for his mockery appear painful, and for her sake he one another, and trust in God.
ceased to jest upon such themes as he had once Gertrude was the eldest child of a poor widow, done. who occupied an adjoining cottage. She spun
“ After all,” said Gertrude, upon one occaand sewed, and made lace; tended and arranged casion, when the conversation chanced to turn the flowers which her little brother Eric sold' at upon this subject, “there are many things conthe neighbouring market-place; nursed and stantly happening around us, which are too well waited upon her aged mother, or romped and authenticated to be denied, and too strange to be laughed with her young sister Lily. She was explained. I certainly do not believe in ghosts, never idle, never out of spirits, and her sweet but I as certainly believe that nothing is imposvoice might be heard from morning till night sible to God !" singing at her wheel, or among her Aowers, or Lily, who had all a young girl's love of the as she passed fearlessly through that dreary wood | marvellous and romantic, asked Paul if he had ever seen the spirit which was said to haunt the , so that he had not even sufficient strength left little way-side chapel, of which mention has be- to demand admittance at that door to which the fore been made.
light burning within had providentially directed “No, never; and yet I have been there at all him.” hours. But what is it like, that I may know it, “ Then it was no ghost after all !” exclaimed in case we should ever meet?"
Eric, with a disappointed air. “ Like a woman, they say, dressed all in white, “We might have suspected as much," obwith her long hair floating on her shoulders.” served his sister Lily. “Who says so, Lily?”
Gertrude put her hand into her lover's, and “Nonsense! How provoking you are! But smiled. “Did the poor man recover ?” asked surely you know the legend ?”
she. “Not I,” replied Paul, carelessly.
“Yes, and you will doubtless see him some “ She is said,” continued Lily, without heed- day, for he never passes this way without calling his incredulous smile, "to have been the ing.” only daughter of a proud and wealthy baron, Supposing that you had sat still,” said Lily, who wanted to force her into a marriage with " and feared to open the door! I am sure I one whom she never could have loved, even if should.” she had not been, as she was--secretly betrothed “I hope not,” answered Paul Vanderpant; to a brave young knight, with no fortune but his "for then the poor old man must certainly have sword. To avoid this hateful marriage, the perished with the cold : as Gertrude says, we lovers fled away one moonlight night; but some-should fear nothing but God!" how the baron got to hear of it, and burning Lily smiled, and remained silent, for she well with rage, set spurs to his horse, and overtook knew that whatever Gertrude said, or thought, them just opposite the little way-side chapel, in or did, was sure to be right in the eyes of Paul; which the lady sougnt refuge. She was kneel- and the young girl wondered, if ever she had a ing and praying before the altar, when her stern lover-a possibility which she often seriously confather entered hastily, with his sword drawn and templated—whether it would be the same, and covered with blood; and she knew by that, as whether it would ever be " as Lily says !" Time well as by the exp ession of his countenance, enough, sweet Lily Thou art little more than a that all was over. For a moment the old baron child as yet, although thou wouldst toss thy was startled by a wild and thrilling shriek, and pretty head, and curl thy small rosy lips, if any when he advanced, after a pause, and lifted her one were to venture to tell thee so. from the ground where she had fallen, he found Assisted by her mother and sister, Gertrude that she was dead : her heart had broken! The spun all her own household linen, and arranged body of the young knight is said to have been hier simple wardrobe against the now fast apsecretly interred somewhere within the precincts proaching period which had been fixed upon for of the chapel; while that of his betrothed was their wedding to take place. It was so delightful conveyed back to the splendid burial-place of to think that she was not to be separated from her ancestors ; but every night her spirit comes her family, but could see them every day as to weep over the lonely grave of her murdered usual, and go in and out the old cottage, and aslover!”
certain that her mother had everything com“ And did you really never hear or see any fortable, and put Lily in the way of doing many thing ?” asked the little Eric of Paul Vander- things which would seem strange to her at first'; pant, as his sister concluded her narrative. for the active and busy Gertrude had been hitherto
“Yes, I remember now. One night I was the presiding spirit of her cheerful home. There sitting all alone in my little cottage, when I were one or two little articles, however, which distinctly heard three deep groans, succeeded by Gertrude wanted to complete her trousseau, and a heavy fall without.”
which could not be procured nearer than the “And what did you do?" asked the boy, market-town of SM, situated at the extremity creeping closer to him, and fixing his large eyes of the wood about five miles off; but she knew eagerly upon his countenance.
the path well, having been that way many times I got up directly and opened the door; but before. Accordingly, one fine morning, Gerthere was nothing to be seen, although to be trude started for S- , accompanied by Lily, sure the night was very dark. I had, however, who, as their mother appeared unusually well, no sooner resumed my seat, than the groaning and Eric had promised not to leave her, asked was repeated in somewhat fainter accents." permission to go with her sister; for there was
“How frightened you must have been,” said nothing that Lily enjoyed more than going to Lily.
S--, which, small as the town was, seemed to I was startled, I confess; and this time I her like another world. took the lamp with me; but when I opened the Paul Vanderpant prophesied that there would door, there came a sudden gust of wind and blew be a heavy fall of snow before night; but it cerit out, so that I was no better off than before. tainly did not look like it then. It was agreed, In stepping over the threshold I stumbled however, that, in case he should be right, the sisagainst something which lay prostrate on the ters were to sleep at the house of a distant relaground, and another heavy groan succeeded. It tive, who resided in the town; and Paul was to was a poor wandering pedlar who had lost his come over the following morning and fetch them way, and was half frozen to death with the cold; | home. He would have been glad to accomThe Way-side Bell.
205 pany them could he have found time; but, Gertrude was also desirous of returning, for if the truth must be told, even Gertrude was not she well knew that her mother would be fancying very sorry that he did not; for she had, as we all sorts of improbable things, and have no rest, have said, several little purchases to make, and if they did not come, although they tarried at men are sadly in the way upon these occasions. her own request. Accordingly the sisters took
Lily laughed merrily, as she stood warmly a hasty leave of their kind relative, and comequipped for their long walk, and with the early menced their journey homeward. The cold was sunlight glittering upon her bright, golden hair. intense, and a sharp easterly wind came full in “ Be sure that you bring the sledge, Paul,” she their faces, sometimes in such violent gusts as exclaimed; "for the snow will certainly be too almost to beat them back again, while the deep to admit of our walking back !"
withered branches of the trees creaked and “We shall see,” replied Paul Vanderpant, groaned as they bent beneath the blast. good-humouredly.
“ This is anything but pleasant,” said Lily, “I would lay you any wager we are home to as she paused a moment to recover breath and night,” persisted Lily.
wrap the folds of her cloak closer around her. "I hope so, if it be without danger. But Ger- “But at any rate there is no snow, and we shall trude, dearest, you will be careful, for my sake.' yet laugh at Paul for a false prophet!”
Gertrude answered in a low voice; and joining As she spoke, a large white snow-flake drifted her sister a few moments afterwards, they passed before her eyes, and whirled round and round as into the thickwood, and were soon out of sight; if in mockery. Gertrude smiled as she pointed although their merry voices, and Lily's clear to it; but there was a weight on her heart, and ringing laugh, lingered in the air for several she almost wished that they had not ventured. moments, and then died gradually away. But it was too late to think of that now, since
Notwithstanding that they are constantly it was as near to proceed as to retrace their together, it is astonishing how many things steps; and no alternative remained but to walk sisters always have to talk about, especially on as quickly as possible. when it happens, as in the present case, that one Every moment the sky seemed to grow darker is on the eve of marriage. What bright plans and darker, while the snow fell fast and silently. were arranged! What fairy hopes of future In an incredibly short space of time the ground happiness! How the real and the ideal mingled and the trees were all whitened over, while the together in their thoughts and words, which, sharp driving sleet almost blinded them. Ger-. wander as they would, ever came back to the trude soon discovered that they had missed the one theme. How Lily talked and laughed, and right path, but knew not how to regain it; and praised Paul Vanderpant; and how Gertrude they wandered about for hours, until the night blushed and listened, and loved her for that came on and found them completely bewildered praise. The time passed away so quickly, they in the mazes of that dreary wood. At length could scarcely believe that they had indeed come poor Lily began to lose all hope, and sinking to the termination of that dreary wood, and down upon the snow, declared that she felt too were entering into the little market-town of tired to go any further. It was in vain that S- Neither had they perceived how the Gertrude endeavoured to arouse and cheer her : beauty of the morning had passed away, and the the cold had seized upon her, and a fatal lethargy atmosphere gradually darkened and thickened was fast stealing over her senses. around them.
“Oh, Lily !” exclaimed her sister, “do try Gertrude's simple purchases were soon made, and get up. It does not snow quite so hard much sooner than Lily quite approved of; for now, and perhaps we may be able to find the she would fain have lingered twice as long, path. We cannot be so very far from home : looking at the smart ribbons and laces; but as at any rate, it will be warmer walking about.” her sister said, of what use was it, since they “What were you saying about home, sister? could not afford to buy any? They next went for your voice sounds a great way off, and I feel to visit the relative before mentioned, who re- so sleepy. I do not think that I shall ever see ceived them with a hearty welcome.
home again.” “I think that we shall have some snow,” Hush, dearest! only try and rouse yourself. said she, as they sat at dinner.
Lily: speak to me! Lily! Lily!" “ It does look like it now, to be sure," oh- There was no answer. served Lily. “How Paul will triumph to find “ If she sleeps now," murmured Gertrude, that he was right, after all !"
"she will wake no more. Oh God, be merciful! “ Do you think that the snow will be much?” Save her-save us both! My poor mother! asked Gertrude.
My dear Paul!” And the girl lifted up her “ Not until after sunset."
clasped hands and wept. She took off her And we should be home by then."
warm cloak and spread it over Lily—there was “ If you wish to return to-night,” said their nothing else that she could do. God alone hostess, “I would advise your losing no time could help them. “His will be done !” said about it."
Gertrude. And as she knelt and prayed, a “ Let us go," exclaimed Lily, "if it is only to strange calm came over her, and her heart was tease Paul. I do not believe that it will snow- filled with a sweet trust. “ He knoweth best," at least not before we reach home; and we will thought she. “He will comfort them. And yet, walk fast, as we did this morning,"
if it were His will to sparę us a little longer, we