Puslapio vaizdai
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"Twill be Easter-time in the world-ah me!

And I lose my poor soul, Merman, here with

thee."

I said, “Go up, dear heart, through the waves: Say thy prayer, and come back to the kind seacaves."

She smiled, she went up through the surf in the bay.

Children dear, was it yesterday?

Children dear, were we long alone?

The sea grows stormy, the little ones moan;
"Long prayers," I said, "in the world they
say."

66

Come," I said, and we rose through the surf in
the bay.

We went up the beach in the sandy down
Where the sea-stocks bloom, to the white-wall'd

town,

Through the narrow paved streets, where all was

still,

To the little gray church on the windy hill.
From the church came a murmur of folk at their

prayers,

But we stood without in the cold blowing airs. We climb'd on the graves, on the stones worn with rains,

And we gazed up the aisle through the small

leaded panes.

Romance and

Reality

Romance

and Reality

She sate by the pillar; we saw her clear;
"Margaret, hist! come quick, we are here.
Dear heart," I said, "we are here alone.
The sea grows stormy, the little ones moan."
But, ah, she gave me never a look,

For her eyes were seal'd to the holy book.
Loud prays the priest; shut stands the door.
Come away, children, call no more,
Come away, come down, call no more.

Down, down, down,

Down to the depths of the sea,
She sits at her wheel in the humming town,
Singing most joyfully.

Hark what she sings: "O joy, O joy,

For the humming street, and the child with its

toy,

For the priest and the bell, and the holy well,
For the wheel where I spun,

And the blessed light of the sun."

And so she sings her fill,

Singing most joyfully,

Till the shuttle falls from her hand,

And the whizzing wheel stands still.

She steals to the window and looks at the sand

And over the sand at the sea;

And her eyes are set in a stare;
And anon there breaks a sigh,
And anon there drops a tear,

From a sorrow clouded eye,

And a heart sorrow laden,

A long, long sigh,

For the cold strange eyes of a little Mermaiden,

And the gleam of her golden hair.

Come away, away, children.
Come children, come down.
The hoarse wind blows colder;
Lights shine in the town.

She will start from her slumber
When gusts shake the door;
She will hear the winds howling,
Will hear the waves roar.
We shall see, while above us
The waves roar and whirl,
A ceiling of amber,

A pavement of pearl.

Singing," Here came a mortal,
But faithless was she,

And alone dwell forever
The kings of the sea."

But, children, at midnight,
When soft the winds blow,
When clear falls the moonlight,
When spring-tides are low;

When sweet airs come seaward
From heaths starr'd with broom;

Romance and

Reality

Romance

and

Reality

And high rocks throw mildly
On the blanch'd sands a gloom:
Up the still, glistening beaches,
Up the creeks we will hie;
Over banks of bright seaweed
The ebb-tide leaves dry.

We will gaze from the sand-hills
At the white sleeping town;

At the church on the hillside-
And then come back, down.
Singing, "There dwells a loved one,
But cruel is she:

She left lonely forever

The kings of the sea.”

MATTHEW ARNOLD.

The Sands of Dee

I

"O Mary, go and call the cattle home,

And call the cattle home,

And call the cattle home

Across the sands of Dee;"

The western wind was wild and dank wi' foam,

And all alone went she.

II

The western tide crept up along the sand,
And o'er and o'er the sand,

And round and round the sand,

As far as eye could see.

The rolling mist came down and hid the land

And never home came she.

III

"Oh! is it weed, or fish, or floating hairA tress o' golden hair,

A drowned maiden's hair

Above the nets at sea?

Was never salmon yet that shone so fair
Among the stakes on Dee."

IV

They rowed her in across the rolling foam,
The cruel crawling foam,

The cruel hungry foam,

To her grave beside the sea:

But still the boatmen hear her call the cattle home

Across the sands of Dee!

CHARLES KINGSLEY.

Romance and

Reality

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