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Life's endless toil and endeavour ;
•And to-night I long for rest.

Read from some humbler poet,

Whose songs gushed from his heart, As showers from the clouds of summer,

Or tears from the eyelids start;

Who, through long days of labour,

And nights devoid of ease, Still heard in his soul the music

Of wonderful melodies.

Such songs have power to quiet

The restless pulse of care,
And come like the benediction

That follows after prayer.
Then read from the treasured volume

The poem of thy choice,
And lend to the rhyme of the poet

The beauty of thy voice.

And the night shall be filled with music,

And the cares, that infest the day, Shall fold their tents, like the Arabs,,

And as silently steal away.

AFTERNOON IN FEBRUARY.

THE day is ending,
The night is descending;
The marsh is frozen,

The river dead.

Through clouds like ashes
The red sun flashes
On village-windows

That glimmer red.

The snow recommences;
The buried fences
Mark no longer

The road o'er the plain ;
While through the meadows,
Like fearful shadows,
Slowly passes

A funeral train.

The bell is pealing,
And every feeling
Within me responds

To the dismal knell;

Shadows are trailing,
My heart is bewailing
And tolling within

Like a funeral bell.

TO AN OLD DANISH SONG BOOK.

WELCOME, my old friend,
Welcome to a foreign fireside,
While the sullen gales of autumn
Shake the windows.
The ungrateful world
Has, it seems, dealt harshly with thee,
Since, beneath the skies of Denmark,
First I met thee.

There are marks of age,
There are thumb-marks on thy margin,
Made by hands that clasped thee rudely
At the alehouse.

Soiled and dull thou art;
Yellow are thy time-worn pages,
As the russet, rain-molested
Leaves of autumn.

Thou art stained with wine
Scattered from hilarious goblets,
As these leaves with the libations
Of Olympus.
Yet dost thou recall
Days departed, hal -forgotten,
When in dreamy youth I wandered
By the Baltic,

When I paused to hear
The old ballad of King Christian
Shouted from suburban taverns
In the twilight.

Thou recallest bards,
Who, in solitary chainbers,
And with hearts by passion wasted,
Wrote thy pages.

Thou recallest homes
Where thy songs of love and friendship
Made the gloomy northern winter
Bright as summer.

Once some ancient Scald,
In his bleak, ancestral Iceland,
Chanted staves of these old ballads
To the Vikings.

Once in Elsinore,
At the court of old King Hamlet,
Yorick and his boon companions
Sang these ditties.

Once Prince Frederick's Guard
Sang them in their smoky barracks ;-
Suddenly the English cannon
Joined the chorus!
Peasants in the field,
Sailors on the roaring ocean,
Students, tradesmien, pale mechanics,
All have sung them.

Thou hast been their friend;
They, alas, have left thee friendless !
Yet at least by one warm fireside
Art thou welcome.

And, as swallows build
In these wide, old-fashioned chimneys,
So thy twittering songs shall nestle
In my bosom,-
Quiet, close, and warm,
Sheltered from all molestation,
And recalling by their voices
Youth and travel.

WALTER VON DER VOGELWEID.

VOGELWEID the Minnesinger,

When he left this world of ours,
Laid his body in the cloister,

Under Würtzburg's minster towers.

And he gave the monks his treasures,

Gave them all with this behest :

They should feed the birds at noontide

Daily on his place of rest; Saying, “From these wandering minstrels

I have learned the art of song; Let me now repay the lessons

They have taught so well and long."
Thus the bard of love departed;

And, fulfilling his desire,
On his tomb the birds weré feasted

By the children of the choir.

Day by day, o'er tower and turret,

In foul weather and in fair,
Day by day, in vaster numbers,

Flocked the poets of the air.
On the tree whose heavy branches

Overshadowed all the place,
On the pavement, on the tombstone,

On the poet's sculptured face,
On the cross-bars of each window,

On the lintel of each door,
They renewed the War of Wartburg,

Which the bard had fought before.

There they sang their merry carols,

Sang their lauds on every side; And the name their voices uttered

Was the name of Vogelweid. Till at length the portly abbot

Murmured, “Why this waste of food? Be it changed to loaves henceforward

For our fasting brotherhood.”'

Then in vain o'er tower and turret,

From the walls and woodland nests, When the minster bells rang noontide,

Gathered the unwelcome guests.

Then in vain, with cries discordant,

Clamorous round the Gothic spire, Screamed the feathered Minnesingers

For the children of the choir.

Time has long effaced the inscriptions

On the cloister's funeral stones, And tradition only tells us

Where repose the poet's bones.

But around the vast cathedral,

By sweet echoes multiplied, Still the birds repeat the legend,

And the name of Vogelweid.

DRINKING SONG.

INSCRIPTION FOR AN ANTIQUE PITCHER.

COME, old friend, sit down and listen!

From the pitcher, placed between us, How the waters laugh and glisten

In the head of old Silenus!

Old Silenus, bloated, drunken,

Led by his inebriate Satyrs;
On his breast his head is sunken,

Vacantly he leers and chatters.
Fauns with youthful Bacchus follow;

Ivy crowns that brow supernal As the forehead of Apollo,

And possessing youth eternal. Round about him, fair Bacchantes,

Bearing cymbals, fruits, and thyrses, Wild from Naxian groves, or Zante's

Vineyards, sing delirious verses. Thus he won, through all the nations,

Bloodless victories, and the farmer Bore, as trophies and oblations,

Vines for banners, ploughs for armour.

Judged by no o'erzealous rigour,

Much this mystic throng expresses : Bacchus was the type of vigour,

And Silenus of excesses.

These are ancient ethnic revels

Of a faith long since forsaken; Now the Satyrs, changed to devils,

Frighten mortals wine-o'ertaken. Now to rivulets from the mountains

Point the rods of fortune-tellers; Youth perpetual dwells in fountains,

Not in flasks, and casks, and cellars. Claudius, though he sang of flagons

And huge tankards filled with Rhenish,

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