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Swinging and swinging, back and forth,
With the rose-light in her face,
She seemed like a bird and flower in one,
And the forest her native place.

"Steady! I'll send you up, my child,"
But she stopped me with a cry,
"Go 'way, go 'way! don't touch me, please;
I'm letting the old cat die."

"You're letting him die!" I cried, aghast, Why, where's the cat, my dear ?"


And lo, the laugh that filled the wood

Was a thing for the birds to hear.

"Why, don't you know ?" said the little maid, The sparkling, beautiful elf,

"That we call it letting the old cat die When the swing stops all by itself."

Then swinging and swinging, and looking back, With the merriest look in her eye,

She bade me good-bye, and I left her alone, "Letting the old cat die."


THE Kaiser feasted in his hall:

The red wine mantled high;
Banners were trembling on the wall
To the peals of minstrelsy;

And many a gleam and sparkle came
From the armor hung around,

As it caught the glance of the torch's flame,
O'er the earth with palm-boughs crowned.

Why fell there silence on the chord
Beneath the harper's hand?

And suddenly from that rich board
Why rose the wassail band?

The strings were hushed: the knights made way For the queenly mother's tread.

As up the hall, in dark array,

Two fair-haired boys she led.

She led them e'en to the Kaiser's place,
And still before him stood;

Till, with strange wonder o'er his face,
Flushed the proud warrior-blood;

And "Speak, my mother! speak!" he cried: "Wherefore this mourning vest?

And the clinging children by thy side
In weeds of sadness drest ?"

"Well may a mourning vest be mine
And theirs, my son, my son!
Look at the features of thy line
In each fair little one.

Though grief a while within their eyes
Hath tamed the dancing glee,
Yet there thine own quick spirit lies,—
Thy brother's children see!

"And where is he, thy brother ?-where? He in thy home that grew,

And smilingly, with floating hair,
Ever to greet thee flew?

How would his arms thy neck intwine,
His fond lips press thy brow!

My son! oh, call these orphans thine!
Thou hast no brother now.

"What! from their gentle eyes doth nought Speak of thy childhood's hours,

And smite thee with a tender thought
Of thy dead father's towers?

Kind was thy boyish heart, and true,
When reared together there:

Through the old woods like fawns ye flew.
Where is thy brother?-where?

"Well didst thou love him then, and he Still at thy side was seen.

How is it that such things can be

As though they ne'er had been?

Evil was this world's breath, which came
Between the good and brave:
Now must the tears of grief and shame
Be offered to the grave.

"And let them, let them there be poured! Though all unfelt below,

Thine own wrung heart, to love restored,
Shall soften as they flow.
Oh! Death is mighty to make peace:
Now bid his work be done;

So many an inward strife shall cease;
Take, take these babes, my son!"

His eye was dimmed; the strong man shook
With feelings long suppressed:

Up in his arms the boys he took,

And strained them to his breast.

And a shout from all in the royal hall

Burst forth to hail the sight;

And eyes were wet midst the brave that met
At the Kaiser's feast that night.


WAS it the chime of a tiny bell,

That came so sweet to my dreaming earLike the silvery tones of a fairy's shell,

That he winds on the beach so mellow and clear,

When the winds and the waves lie together asleep, And the Moon and the Fairy are watching the deep, She dispensing her silvery light,

And he, his notes as silvery quite, While the boatman listens and ships his oar,

To catch the music that comes from the shore-
Hark! the notes on my ear that play,
Are set to words:-as they float, they say,
"Passing away! passing away!"

But no; it was not a fairy's shell

Blown on the beach so mellow and clear;
Nor was it the tongue of a silver bell,

Striking the hour, that filled my ear,
As I lay in my dream; yet was it a chime
That told of the flow of the stream of time.
For a beautiful clock from the ceiling hung,
And a plump little girl for a pendulum swung
(As you've sometimes seen, in a little ring
That hangs in his cage, a Canary Bird swing;)

And she held to her bosom a budding bouquet,
And as she enjoyed it, she seemed to say,
Passing away! passing away!"


O how bright were the wheels that told

Of the lapse of time, as they moved round slow! And the hands, as they swept o'er the dial of gold, Seemed to point to the girl below.

And lo! she had changed:-in a few short hours Her bouquet had become a garland of flowers,

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