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The Ava soldier bred to dangers,
Though all unravel-no one blames
-But on a couch all uncarest
The new-born Infants lay,
Their entrance into day. .
You might in their repose descry,
They nestled tenderly.
As if they felt the rude world round
A blot upon a brother's name,
And now all's hush'd !--a certain still awes The motley crowd ; they gaze on each With a quick-meaning eye—but speech Lies stifled with a numbing fear!
A single voice appals the ear, And tells—but with a whispered breath• How easy is an infant's death.
And that we only do fulfil laws
The gossip ceased ; and you might mark
The influence of her words was creeping Slowly but sure—throughout the rest. And in the pause, and thro’ the dark,
You heard the mother's quiet weeping. - Out rang a sharp and wailing cry
From where the Twins were lain, And from their first and gentlest sleeping
They woke to earth and pain !
As snows that in some deep ravine
Lie motionless and dumb,
And conquer as they come;
“ My children---they are mine !"
And weird, and ghast, and desolate
That sound of woman's deepest fear,
Rung on the humbled father's ear; Where, deadening thought in gloom, he sate With downcast eyes, that loathed to.see, And numb hands drooping on his knee ; And, as a voice that from the skies Bids one the Grave hath housed arise, He rose : the crowd on either side Fell back; sound answered not his stride. He reach'd the cradled pair---no word, No breath, from that hush'd crowd was heard :The mother stretched her arms, but she
Read not the features from her turning, Nor dreamt that there, all visibly
His heart was to the new-born yearning.
Those parted lips forsook.
But, with a fixed and gentle look
And trembling clasp, the father took His children :-to her side he came And breathed—yet scarcely breathed—her name. But not another word he said, That whisper had exorcised Dread.
Lo! on her breast the Twins !-and there
They clung, and sought for food, And with fast-dropping eyes—the pair
The bending mother view’d. And, every moment, you might see She clasp'd them more convulsively ; Looked wildly on the faces near, Looked—lost-yet doubting turned to fear ! Then as below her glance she cast, Forgot-in shuddering o'er--the past ! With folded arms and tearful smile
There stands the touched and silent Father ;