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The king looked on him with gracious eyes,
And said: "He is meet for some high emprise."
To himself he thought: "I will conquer fate,
I will surely die or do something great."

So from the palace he rode away.

There was trouble and need in the town that day;
A child had strayed from his mother's side
Into the woodland dark and wide.

Help!" cried the mother with sorrow wild,
"Help me, Sir Knight, to seek my child!
The hungry wolves in the forest roam;
Help me to bring my lost one home!"


He shook her hand from his bridle rein:
"Alas! poor mother, you ask in vain.
Some meaner succor will do, maybe,
Some squire or varlet of low degree.
There are mighty wrongs in the world to right;
I keep my sword for a noble fight.

I am sad at heart for your baby's fate,
But I ride in haste to do something great."

One wintry night when the sun was set,
A blind old man by the way he met:


'Now, good Sir Knight, for Our Lady's sake, On the sightless wanderer pity take !

The wind blows cold, and the sun is down;
Lead me, I pray, till I reach the town."

Nay," said the knight; "I cannot wait;
I ride in haste to do something great.”


So on he rode in his armor bright, His sword all keen for the longed-for fight. "Laugh with us-laugh!" cried the merry crowd. "Oh! weep!" wailed others with sorrow bowed. "Help us!" the weak and weary prayed, But for joy, nor grief, nor need he stayed. And the years rolled on, and his eyes grew dim, And he died—and none made moan for him.

He missed the good that he might have done,
He missed the blessings he might have won.
Seeking some glorious task to find,
His eyes to all humbler work were blind.

He that is faithful in that which is leas
Is bidden to sit at the heavenly feast.
Yet men and women lament their fate,
If they be not called to do something great.
Florence Tylee.


A FLOWER, on the bank of a brooklet,
Said: "Dear Brook, I'm very dry;
Just give me a taste of fresh water,
As swiftly you hurry by ?"

"I've only enough for myself," said the Brook, "And naught for charity."

"O Cloud," said the Brook, "remember I'm expected soon at the sea,

And I'm almost out of fresh water

Then, O Cloud, remember me."

"I've nothing to give," said the Cloud, "unless "Tis a little sympathy."

"O Sea," said the Cloud, "you're rich and full, You can give me all I need;

If I had a quarter as much as you,

All cries for help I'd heed."

"I haven't too much," said the Sea, "and then "Tis my duty to feed."

"Sweet Flower," said the Bee," just give me a taste Of the honey within your cup."

But drawing nearer, the Bee perceived
The Flower was all withered up.
So he said no more, sought beyond
A better place to sup.

The Sun was sailing along in the sky,
And he saw the withered Flower,

And the pebbly bed of the Brook, now dry,
And the Cloud bereft of power,

And the gasping Sea, as restless quite

As if it had no dower.

And he smiled a smile, so bright and warm,
Then the Sea was ashamed of its greed,
And sent a donation up to the Cloud,

The Cloud supplied the Brook's need,
And the Brook the Flower, the Flower the Bee
Abundantly did feed.

Our hearts are hard as the cold, hard stones,
As pitiless as the Sea,

Till the Sun of Righteousness arise,

Our selfishness to see.

Let us pray, my friend, for a bright, warm smile To fall on you and me.


Two little stockings hung side by side,
Close to the fireplace broad and wide.
"Two ?" said Saint Nick, as down he came
Loaded with toys and many a game.

"Ho, ho!" said he, with a laugh of fun,
"I'll have no cheating, my pretty one;
I know who dwells in this house, my dear,
There's only one little girl lives here."

So he crept up close to the chimney-place,
And measured a sock with a sober face.
Just then a wee little note fell out
And fluttered low like a bird about.

"Aha! what's this?" said he, in surprise,
As he pushed his specs up close to his eyes,
And read the address in a child's rough plan,
"Dear Saint Nicholas," so it began;

"The other stocking you see on the wall
I have hung for a child named Clara Hall.
She's a poor little girl, but very good,
So I thought, perhaps, you kindly would
Fill up her stocking, too, to-night,
And help to make her Christmas bright.
If you've not enough for both stockings there,
Please put all in Clara's, I shall not care.'

Saint Nicholas brushed a tear from his eye,
And," God bless you, darling," he said, with a sigh,
Then softly he blew through the chimney high
A note like a bird's, as it soars on high,
When down came two of the funniest mortals
That ever were seen this side earth's portals.


Hurry up," said Saint Nick, and nicely prepare All a little girl needs where money is rare."

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