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We Ve laid him there, where the blessed air
Where the blackbird sings, and the wild bee's wings
Takes up the song.
He loved to lie where his wakeful eye
Brought him like light.
Nor word, nor sign, nor look of mine,
Shall bring him now.
But he taketh his rest, where he loved best
56 CHRISTMAS TIMES.
CHRISTMAS TIMES. —Howard.
'T Was the night before Christmas, and all through the house
And then, in a twinkling, I heard on the roof
merry! His cheeks were like roses, his nose like a cherry; His droll little mouth was drawn up like a bow, And the beard of his chin was as white as the snow; The stump of a pipe he held tight in his teeth, And the smoke it encircled his head like a wreath. He was chubby and plump, a right jolly old elf, And I laughed when I saw him, in spite of myself. A wink of his eye, and a twist of his head, Soon gave me to know I had nothing to dread. He spoke not a word, but went straight to his work, And filled all his stockings, — then turned with a jerk, And laying his finger aside of his nose, And giving a nod, up the chimney he rose. He sprang to his sleigh, to his team gave a whistle, And away they all flew, like the down of a thistle; But I heard him exclaim, ere he drove out of sight, "Merry Christmas to all, and to all a good night!"
THE PET LAMB. — Wordsworth.
The dew was falling fast, the stars began to blink; I heard a voice; it said, "Drink, pretty creature, drink."
58 THE PET LAMB.
And, looking o'er the hedge, before me I espied
No other sheep were near, the lamb was all alone,
kneel, While to that mountain lamb she gave its evening
The lamb, while from her hand he thus his supper
took, Seemed to feast with head and ears, and his tail with
pleasure shook; "Drink, pretty creature, drink," she said, in such a
tone, That I almost received her heart into my own.
'Twas little Barbara Lethwaite, a child of beauty rare! I watched them with delight, they were a lovely pair. Now with her empty can the maiden turned away; But ere ten yards were gone, her footsteps she did stay.
Towards the lamb she looked; and from that shady
place I unobserved could see the workings of her face; If nature to her tongue could measured numbers
bring, Thus, thought I, to her lamb that little maid might sing: —
"What ails thee, young one? what? why pull so at thy cord? Is it not well with thee? well both for bed and
board? Thy plot of grass is soft, and green as grass can be; Rest, little, young one, rest; what is 't that aileth thee?
"What is it thou wouldst seek? what is wanting to thy heart? Thy limbs are they not strong? and beautiful thou
art. This grass is tender grass; these flowers they have no
peers, And that green corn all day long is rustling in thy
"If the sun be shining hot, do but stretch thy woollen
chain, This birch is standing by, its covert thou canst gain; For rain and mountain storms —the like thou need'st not fear — The rain and storm are things that scarcely can come here.
"Rest, little, young one, rest; thou hast forgot the
day When my father found thee first, in places far away; Many flocks were on the hills, but thou wert owned by none, And thy mother from thy side forevermore was gone.
"He took thee in his arms, and in pity brought thee home; O blessed day for thee! then whither wouldst thou