« PreviousContinue »
In pity come! be to my suffering kind!
"Who knows? perhaps I am forsaken! Ah! woe is me! then bear me to my grave!
O God! what thoughts within me waken! Away! he will return! I do but rave!
He will return! I need not fear! He swore it by our Saviour dear; He could not come at his own will; Is weary, or perhaps is ill! Perhaps his heart, in this disguise, Prepares for me some sweet surprise! But some one comes! Though blind, my heart
And that deceives me not! 't is he! 't is he!"
"Hark! the joyous airs are ringing! Sister, dost thou hear them singing? How merrily they laugh and jest! Would we were bidden with the rest! I would don my hose of homespun gray, And my doublet of linen striped and gay; Perhaps they will come; for they do not wed Till to-morrow at seven o'clock, it is said!" "I know it!" answered Margaret; Whom the vision, with aspect black as jet, Mastered again; and its hand of ice Held her heart crashed, as in a vice!
With tranquil air, her way doth wind. Odors of laurel, making her faint and pale, Round her at times exhale,
And in the sky as yet no sunny ray, But brumal vapors gray.
Near that castle, fair to see,
Crowded with sculptures old, in every part, Marvels of nature and of art,
And proud of its name of high degree,
At the base of the rock, is builded there;
Its sacred summit, swept by autumn gales,
"Paul, lay thy noisy rattle by!" Thus Margaret said.
"Where are we? we
"Yes; seest thou not our journey's end? Hearest not the osprey from the belfry cry?
The hideous bird, that brings ill luck, we know !
The night we watched beside his bed,'
Take care of Paul; I feel that I am dying!
Come in! The bride will be here soon: Thou tremblest! O my God! thou art going to swoon!"
Village girls in robes of snow Follow, weeping as they go; Nowhere was a smile that day, No, ah no! for each one seemed to say:
"The road should mourn and be veiled in gloom,
A CHRISTMAS CAROL.
FROM THE NOEI BOURGUIGNON DE GUI BARÔZAI,
I HEAR along our street
On their haut boys, Christmas songs!
Let us by the fire
Sing them till the night expire!
In December ring
Every day the chimes; Loud the gleemen sing
In the streets their merry rhymes.
Sing them till the night expire.
To the sound they beat,
With uncovered heads and feet.
Sing them till the night expire.
Who by the fireside stands Stamps his feet and sings; But he who blows his hands Not so gay a carol brings. Let us by the fire Ever higher
Sing them till the night expire!
SHOULD you ask me, whence these stories?
With the dew and damp of meadows,
I should answer, I should tell you, "From the forests and the prairies, From the great lakes of the Northland, From the land of the Ojibways, From the land of the Dacotahs,
From the mountains, moors, and fenlands,
Should you ask where Nawadaha
"All the wild-fowl sang them to him,
Mahng, the loon, the wild-goose, Wawa, The blue heron, the Shuh-shuh-gah, And the grouse, the Mushkodasa!
If still further you should ask me, Saving, "Who was Nawadaha? Tell us of this Nawadaha," I should answer your inquiries Straightway in such words as follow. "In the Vale of Tawasentha, In the green and silent valley, By the pleasant water-courses, Dwelt the singer Nawadaha. Round about the Indian village Spread the meadows and the corn-fields, And beyond them stood the forest, Stood the groves of singing pine-trees, Green in Summer, white in Winter, Ever sighing, ever singing.
"And the pleasant water-courses,
"There he sang of Hiawatha,
Ye who love the haunts of Nature,
Ye who love a nation's legends,
Ye whose hearts are fresh and simple,
Ye, who sometimes, in your rambles Through the green lanes of the country, Where the tangled barberry-bushes Hang their tufts of crimson berries Over stone walls gray with mosses, Pause by some neglected graveyard, For a while to muse, and ponder On a half-effaced inscription, Written with little skill of song-craft, Homely phrases, but each letter Full of hope and yet of heart-break, Full of all the tender pathos Of the Here and the Hereafter;— Stay and read this rude inscription, Read this Song of Hiawatha !
THE SONG OF HIAWATHA. I.
On the Mountains of the Prairie,
From his footprints flowed a river, Leaped into the light of morning, O'er the precipice plunging downward Gleamed like Ishkoodan, the comet. And the Spirit, stooping earthward, With his finger on the meadow Traced a winding pathway for it, Saying to it, "Run in this way!
From the red stone of the quarry With his hand he broke a fragment, Moulded it into a pipe-head, Shaped and fashioned it with figures; From the margin of the river Took a long reed for a pipe-stem,
With its dark green leaves upon it;
And the smoke rose slowly, slowly,
From the Vale of Tawasentha, From the Valley of Wyoming, From the groves of Tuscaloosa, From the far-off Rocky Mountains, From the Northern lakes and rivers All the tribes beheld the signal, Saw the distant smoke ascending, The Pukwana of the Peace-Pipe.
And the Prophets to the nations Said: 66 Behold it, the Pukwana! By this signal from afar off, Bending like a wand of willow, Waving like a hand that beckons, Gitche Manito, the mighty, Calls the tribes of men together, Calls the warriors to his council!"
Down the rivers, o'er the prairies, Came the warriors of the nations, Came the Delawares and Mohawks, Came the Choctaws and Camanches, Came the Shoshonies and Blackfeet, Came the Pawnees and Omahas, Came the Mandans and Dacotahs, Came the Hurons and Ojibways, All the warriors drawn together By the signal of the Peace-Pipe, To the Mountains of the Prairie, To the great Red Pipe-stone Quarry. And they stood there on the meadow, With their weapons and their war-gear, Painted like the leaves of Autumn, Painted like the sky of morning, Wildly glaring at each other: In their faces stern defiance, In their hearts the feuds of ages, The hereditary hatred, The ancestral thirst of vengeance. Gitche Manito, the mighty, The creator of the nations, Looked upon them with compassion, With paternal love and pity; Looked upon their wrath and wrangling But as quarrels among children, But as feuds and fights of children!
Over them he stretched his right hand, To subdue their stubborn natures, To allay their thirst and fever, By the shadow of his right hand; Spake to them with voice majestic As the sound of far-off waters, Falling into deep abysses, Warning, chiding, spake in this wise:"O my children! my poor children! Listen to the words of wisdom, Listen to the words of warning, From the lips of the Great Spirit, From the Master of Life, who made you! "I have given you lands to hunt in,
I have given you streams to fish in,
I have given you bear and bison,
I have given you roe and reindeer,
I have given you brant and beaver,
"I am weary of your quarrels,
"I will send a Prophet to you,
"Bathe now in the stream before you, Wash the war-paint from your faces, Wash the blood-stains from your fingers, Bury your war-clubs and your weapons, Break the red stone from this quarry, Mould and make it into Peace-Pipes, Take the reeds that grow beside you, Deck them with your brightest feathers, Smoke the calumet together, And as brothers live henceforward!"
Then upon the ground the warriors Threw their cloaks and shirts of deerskin, Threw their weapons and their war-gear, Leaped into the rushing river, Washed the war-paint from their faces. Clear above them flowed the water, Clear and limpid from the footprints Of the Master of Life descending; Dark below them flowed the water, Soiled and stained with streaks of crimson, As if blood were mingled with it!
From the river came the warriors, Clean and washed from all their war-paint; On the banks their clubs they buried, Buried all their warlike weapons. Gitche Manito, the mighty, The Great Spirit, the creator, Smiled upon his helpless children!
And in silence all the warriors Broke the red stone of the quarry, Smoothed and formed it into Peace-Pipes, Broke the long reeds by the river, Decked them with their brightest feathers, And departed each one homeward, While the Master of Life, ascending, Through the opening of cloud-curtains, Through the doorways of the heaven, Vanished from before their faces, In the smoke that rolled around him, The Pukwana of the Peace-Pipe!
THE FOUR WINDS.
"HONOR be to Mudjekeewis!" Cried the warriors, cried the old men, When he came in triumph homeward With the sacred Belt of Wampum, From the regions of the North-Wind, From the kingdom of Wabasso, From the land of the White Rabbit.
He had stolen the Belt of Wampum From the neck of Mishe-Mokwa, From the Great Bear of the mountains, From the terror of the nations, As he lay asleep and cumbrous On the summit of the mountains, Like a rock with mosses on it,
Spotted brown and gray with mosses.
Then he swung aloft his war-club,
With the heavy blow bewildered,
Hark you, Bear! you are a coward, And no Brave, as you pretended; Else you would not cry and whimper Like a miserable woman!
Bear! you know our tribes are hostile,
Then again he raised his war-club,
Honor be to Mudjekeewis!" With a shout exclaimed the people, "Honor be to Mudjekeewis! Henceforth he shall be the West-Wind, And hereafter and forever
Shall he hold supreme dominion
Young and beautiful was Wahun;
Lonely in the sky was Wabun; Though the birds sang gayly to him, Though the wild-flowers of the meadow Filled the air with odors for him, Though the forest and the rivers