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knee. Oh! how blest that mother, that she never lived to witness such a fearful change.

Mrs. Grainger felt that her days were nearly run, and yet her task was not accomplished. Feeble as she was, she seldom went beyond the farm, and never met Horace Leigh. Once only he had passed her, turned, and given a slight recognition; she saw that every muscle in his face was quivering with emotion, as he spurred his horse quickly forward, and disappeared.

It was in the winter-time-ten years from Ruth's death-that Mrs. Grainger heard that Horace was ill. She resolved to go to him, fearless of his anger; he could not be violent to Ruth's mother, she thought; she might do him good; and perhaps sickness would soften his heart, and dispose him to forget the past, and be reconciled to Stephen. The widow entered with a trembling heart the threshold which she had not crossed for years. Bitter memories rose up; and from every dark nook and corner three happy children's faces seemed to gleam out, smiling at her. Where were they all now?

Horace Leigh was lying asleep on an oldfashioned couch, in a room that had once been his mother's. Repose, and the calming influence of illness, had given to his now harsh and strongly-marked features somewhat of their olden look; at least the aged widow thought so, as she stood beside him, and her tears fell fast upon his once abundant and glossy hair, now so thin, and marked with grey. She waited until he awoke, and seeing her, started up, crying

out

"Who are you-why have you come hither?" "It is only I, Horace-I heard you were ill, and thought you would not be angry if I came to see you."

"I have been ill-but that does not signify; I wanted no one-you least of all."

"But why should I not come? You know I always loved you, Horace." And the widow gently took his hand, and looked at him as she had done in his boyhood, until the iron heart was melted. Horace sank back, and covered his face with his hands.

By what means Mrs. Grainger succeeded in lulling his anger, and charming away even the agony that her presence must naturally have brought, it is needless to say. She was one of those ministering angels who work by unseen but all-powerful means; only living to do good. At last Horace bore her visits with calmness, almost with pleasure; he suffered her to do with him as she chose; and by degrees even endured to hear her speak of Stephen; but no arguments, no entreaties, could soften his inexorable hatred, or induce him to see or pardon his brother.

"You never injured me," he would say; "I was wrong to feel anger against you. I am sorry if I have caused you pain; but no power on earth shall ever make me forgive him."

The widow dared not say that if forgiveness were needed, it was equally on Stephen's side. Oftentimes her heart failed her; and at last her

anxiety, and her frequent journeyings to visit Horace for he never would come to herproved too much for her aged frame. Mrs. Grainger was laid on a sick bed, from which she knew she would never rise.

When she felt her strength failing her, the widow sent a message to Horace Leigh.

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"Tell him," she said, that he will see me no more unless he comes, and quickly too; and that Ruth's mother cannot die in peace without speaking to him again."

There was a long struggle between Horace's pride and anger, and his long-smothered but still sincere love for one who had been as a mother to him. At last his better angel conquered, and Horace came.

He had feared to see his brother, but Stephen was not there; Mrs. Grainger had sent him away, lest his presence might even then rouse the evil spirit in Horace's heart. He saw nothing but the place where he had been once so happy, and the dying mother of Ruth.

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"Thank you, Horace," she said feebly, stretching out her hand; "this is good of you."

Horace clasped that withered hand-he was too deeply moved to speak.

"I wanted to say something to you," she continued; "will you not do one kindness towards me?-I shall never ask more." "Anything-anything-but one," cried Ho"Do not ask me to speak to Stephen." The widow half raised herself from her pillow, and looked full at him.

race.

"Horace Leigh," she said slowly and solemnly, "I took you and your brother from the arms of your dead mother-the mother of both. I filled her place as far as another could do toward you. It was my child you both lovedwhich caused such deadly enmity between you. Do you think that my gentle Ruth would welcome her mother in heaven, if I have to tell her that the two she loved best here, one as a betrothed husband, and one as a brother-for as such she did indeed love you, Horace-that they were living in hatred towards one another on her account?"

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The Disconsolate Husband.

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another," said the dying woman faintly. They Now I think that a church-yard wakes each solemn were her last words.

Hand-in-hand, the reconciled brothers knelt beside the couch of Ruth's mother, and watched her during the long hours of night, which she passed in unconscious lethargy, until the spirit fled on the wings of sunrise.

Horace and Stephen Leigh followed the remains of the aged widow to the grave, and saw her laid beside Ruth in the church-yard on the hill-side. Then they returned home-to a home which was henceforth to be the same for both brothers. They never spoke of the past, but lived together as though it had never been. They were not rivals now, for they knew that" death sanctifieth all things," and that in heaven "there is neither marrying nor giving in marriage."

Under the willow-tree was placed a stone, with Ruth's name and age, and that of her mother. Below the latter was engraved this line from the Holy Book

THE DISCONSOLATE HUSBAND.

But through wild flowers and grass I was able to scan "Blessed are the peace-makers, for they shall be The legend it bore, which thus began: called the children of God."

:

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In memory of a darling wife,
The joy and solace of my life,
This stone is raised by him who now,
Longing, himself awaits the blow,
When death shall kindly lay him low;
For Death, so cruel to divide,
Alone can place us side by side.

Also in memory of"-was underneath;
But here the weeds had formed a sort of wreath,

So that I could not see

BY CAMILLA TOULMIN.

SCENE.-Slumberwell Church-yard. The TIME,
close of day.

Though not quite en règle, allow me this way
To open-although I'm not writing a play:
Yet it would be perhaps better,

And more to the letter

Of orthodox law

A picture to draw

Of the village itself, our fair Slumberwell;

And I only can plead,

That I'd do so indeed

Did my limits exceed

The pages I want for the text: but I'll tell That it boasted a pond, and a grove, and a green, "Rose Cottage," "Belle Vue," and a tall house

between.

One shop, whose bow window revealed to the view
Loaves of bread on one side (neither tempting nor
new);

But it also was hinted that bacon, or pin,
Or paper, or tea, might be purchased within,
And needles, and tape, and sugar and cheese;
So doubtless each customer's taste they could please,
And please themselves also, with profit and ease;
As no opposition had they to dread,

So peaceful and happy the life that was led
By the Slumberwellites, or the Slumberwellilions
(I know not which term may best suit the millions).
No doubt, they were excellent folks in their way,
And in candour and justice, this much I will say,
If in church or in church-yard you wander awhile,
Through the tall dark grass, or the echoing aisle,

thought

Which dwells in the heart, or at least that it ought;
But if gravely disposed, and with sentiment fraught,
Can we help ourselves if for a moment we're caught

By a frolicsome sprite,
Who most doth delight
In his motley to deck,
And show us the speck
Where absurdity lurks,
With its smiles and its smirks ;
Enwreathing its thread
With things mournful and dread,
Till so fast are they wed
That perforce we are led
To yield up our heart
This just was the case that soft summer night,
To the merrier part.
When the stars broke through the pale twilight,
And the young moon shone serenely bright,

As if she never looked below

As on wood or on stone
The inscriptions are shown
Though to answer's a task,
You'd be tempted to ask,
"Since only the good people here seem to lie,
Pray what do you do with the bad when they die?"

On strife or sorrow, sin or woe,

I sat down to rest on an old tomb-stone,
By grass and wild flowers all o'ergrown;

The village poesy,

Though I supposed it then
Turned to that "best of men"

Himself, who doubtless followed to the grave
The lost and loved his anguish could not save!
I should have said
That at the head,

Where was recounted this sad tale,
A stooping figure seemed to wail,
And with one wing was clearly trying
(A stony wing, not meant for flying)
To wipe away the stony tears
That after five-and-thirty years
(So from the battered date appears),
Still cours'd adown the stony cheeks,
Whose many weather-beaten streaks,
Neighboured too by a broken nose,
And loss of fingers, and of toes,
Proclaimed that either rude old Time,
Or Slumberwell's ungenial clime
Had shown but small respect to one
Who through all trials still wept on.

Mine was a kind of waking dream,
And while I pondered there did seem
A sort of radiance to gleam,
Which I could plainly trace,
As if to quickly chase
From the stone angel's face
All signs of woe;
That there might grow,
Curling the lip the while,
A most indubitable smile;
And but a minute after,
With smothered laughter,
The bruised and broken thing,
Still resting on one wing,

Bade me, in voice though low yet clear,
To tear away the weeds that grew so near;
Murmuring the while, "Ah! when she first lay here
He used to come and water with a tear
The earth that covered her-e'en me he'd grasp,
And wreaths of flowers around me clasp ;
He said he envied me, that I should ever be
Near the sad home of his dear Emily:
Yet somehow, after a few weeks were gone,
He used to leave me very much alone
The flowers he twined around my urn,
Were faded quite before his next return;
And soon he made his visits 'few and far between,'
Till for three months at once he was not seen.

;

But when at last he came, no tear was shed,
Upon his Emily's low narrow bed;

And, oh! the next time that he came,

I did not know him for the same.

Sables were doffed; he smiled and looked so gay

I should observe, he only passed this way

To church upon his second bridal day!”
I started as I tore away
The grass and wild flowers that had grown
Cloud-like around the lettered stone,
And thus I read-

"In memory of dear Jane, The second wife of Walter Blane." "Go on," the stony figure said, And, half indignant, half in dread, I turned to the same work once more, And grass and wild flowers quickly tore, Till there appeared another name, And to the third-third-wife I came !

Now, though no doubt it would be wittier,
And look on paper far the prettier,

To rail against false fickle man

(Who only has been "fickle" since the world

began ?),

It seems to me a happy thought,
A ray of Heaven's mercy caught,
That Time-abuse him as we will-
Has power to soothe our sorrows still;
And though the living may not fill
Quite up the void, the aching heart
Feels when the loved one doth depart,
It is a happy dispensation
That they should make some compensation!

THE HUMAN VOICE. (From the German of Körner.)

BY MRS. W. P. O'NEILL.

Boldly the warrior quits his hall
For battle, at the trumpet's call ;
And gaily with the bugle horn
The hunter greets the dawn of morn;
The organ in the holy choir
Doth high and solemn thoughts inspire;
But what still deeper thrills the heart,
And makes its trembling pulses start,
Confers the power on a word

To touch the soul's divinest chord?
What makes the human heart rejoice?
The music of a human voice!

A LOVER'S PERVERSITY.

BY MRS. ABDY.

Why dost thou blame her? why deplore
My sad and blighted youth?
Why dost thou number o'er and o'er
Her broken vows of truth?

No force can bind, no spell restrain The wild and wayward will;

I know her false, I know her vain, And yet I love her still!

Why name her errors? none to me
Are hidden or unknown;

Thy memory, faithful though it be,
Surpasses not my own:

The icy scorn by which she tried
My young true heart to chill,
Her wounding words, her mocking pride,
I own-yet love her still!

Trust me, I seek not to defend
The false one from thy blame;
Yet could a thousand tongues, my friend,
Hourly her faults proclaim,
And Echo, ere the accents die,

Spread them from hill to hill—
My truant heart would yet reply,
Alas! I love her still!

TO THE LAURESTINUS.

(Impromptu Lines.)

BY GEORGE J. O. ALLMAN.

Pride of the garden! when the Winter's snow The earth embosoms in its fleecy thrallWhen never sun doth shed its genial glow

To free each leaflet from its frozen pall

When, one by one, have slowly disappear'd

The varied flowers, whose blossoms shed a joy O'er Autumn's rugged brow, by Summer rear'd, But for his chill, rude graspings to destroy

Pale, blooming Evergreen! thy virgin white Uprears, in sweetest loveliness its crown : It hails stern Hyems with its radiance bright, To court his smile, to deprecate his frown.

Thou, too, who, when the Spring doth don her robe,
And fills the air with balmy sweets again,
To ope each bright-eyed flower, and swell each lobe,
Till, budding, it doth burst its prison'd chain-

Dost dwindle, like the song of wood-birds wild,
To emptiness, and in the living green
In vain we search for Winter's favorite child,
And wonderment doth guess where it hath been-

Yet, when the snows, returning, fill the air

With icy whisperings, and crisp the plain With snowy garment, still, sweet Laurel, there Thou blossomest in beauty once again!

Thou art the truest emblem of that Thing,

The Genius of Man, whose wondrous birth, Though the shoots fade, with happier times doth

bring

Fresh forms of beauteousness to gladden Earth!

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The gate of the year!-the birth-morn of another round of months has dawned, and gladness reigns around us far and wide-music, and mirth, and jubilation. From how many lips will pass those gentle words, "A happy New Year!" Some in accustomed careless courtesy, and some in hollow mockery; but more, far more, we trust, in all true brotherly human kindness.

Never do twelve months pass by without strange mutations chancing in the district where we reside, and in the circle of our acquaintance. There is no rest in our present stage-no pause. Nothing is certain to the earthly, save death. So the world moves on, generation succeeding generation; all toiling, some despairing, some hoping, yet all departing into the veiled Future! A year has gone, and during it many have left us, to return no more, bequeathing, nevertheless, memories, and a warning of our own departure. Let us, whilst we cherish the first, never forget the second; but, according a natural sorrow to the dead, prepare shortly to meet

* These pleasant papers reached us too late by many days for us to insert the first in its proper place. Our only expedient seems to be to print two together.-ED. N. M. B. A,

MARGARET M. DAVIDSON.

them again. They sleep; our eyes will soon grow heavy likewise!

How much there is to make us pause in heart examination in this same first day of January! How much, while the heedless are wrapped up in glee, to bid us wonder and weep at the world's deeds and our own, meditating sorrowfully till we make resolutions, bravely thinking to keep them, and saying softly to ourselves, "We truly have this hour numbered another year of mortal life, and Time yet goes on, without voice or sound, a silent but imperious ruler. We may not stay his pinions by our prayers, nor impede his progress by our tears: on, on he hurries us into the illimitable Future. We look back upon the Past, and it is a span's breadth; and forwards, and we are overwhelmed by immensity-the immensity of Eternity, without beginning or end, where years cannot be counted, nor centuries, nor cycles. The human mind, burthened by its earthly companion, shrinks back, unable to contemplate stedfastly a vastness—an infinity-in which, nevertheless, itself must inevitably partake: then are many appalledvoices of deinons whispering, "Put these things away from your hearts, for verily they are yet afar off!" So angels weep because men will not be wise.

Dark is thy birth-time, O new-born year! heavy are the clouds that curtain thy wintry cradle! And yet in these our northern regions, cold though they be, when we hear from age-stained church-towers the old bells ring out in the still midnight to welcome thee, as they did thy predecessors centuries ago, at first low and sweet, with silvery tones like the fairy bells of a summer's eve, when "the moon sleeps with Endymion," then all at once swelling into a loud triumphant peal, as for a nation's highest jubilee-sorrow after a season imperceptibly melts away, and January's first murky morn becomes as blithe as the dewy repose of June's twilight. Perchance the clouds roll gently away at intervals, until they rest only on the distant horizon, leaving our neighbour mountains depicted in stern majesty against the intensely blue arch of heaven, whence the stars, twinkling like spiritual eyes that may not show forth all their lustre, look down in lovely, yet awe-inspiring splendour. Can we behold those perpetual watchers, whose circuit has not intermitted since Creation was called from Chaos, shining with the same surpassing brilliancy that rivetted the gaze of patriarchs, when earth was young, without feeling a sense-subduing emotion come over us, and kneeling entranced in spirit, hearing as it were their mysterious music as they move in unvarying courses? Nor is night only fair. Often by day how beautiful appear

the dark brown hills and half green valleys, in ever-changing light and shade; while the sun glints on them through wreathing mists that curl around the higher summits in fantastic shapes a never-resting sea of cloud; now swelling up like ocean's troubled billows; anon spreading out as calm, and we might also fancy as lucid, as a waveless lake!

Oh, there is ever splendour perceptible in this visible creation-an harmonious loveliness, born of all things Deity has made. The proudest and the meanest unite together-the rugged and the delicate combine in forming the magnificent whole; whilst MAN, its Lord, too often disregards the mind-treasures it offers to his grasp; so their precious influences ascend in vain, and he, foolishly ungrateful, goes on his way, troubled at heart, yet not knowing why he is dispirited. But not so all. Some gentler ones there are, who seek to gather to themselves riches worldlings never comprehend, and reading with attentive eyes the book of Nature, obtain an inward, an imperishable joy, owning in His munificent gifts their great Creator. In this happy band, kind reader ours, we trust that you are numbered; then will you find gladness alike when Winter reigns, and when the Springbirds sing, and, patiently awaiting May's merry hours, endure with cheerfulness the dark skies and cutting blasts of January.

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