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"Nay now, my child," said Alice the nurse,
If there be any faith in man."
Nay now, what faith?" said Alice the nurse, "The man will cleave unto his right." "And he shall have it," the lady replied, Though I should die to-night.”
"Yet give one kiss to your mother dear!
"Yet here's a kiss for my mother dear,
She clad herself in a russet gown,
The lily-white doe Lord Ronald had brought
Down stept Lord Ronald from his tower:
"O Lady Clare, you shame your worth! Why come you drest like a village maid, That are the flower of the earth?"
"If I come drest like a village maid,
"Play me no tricks," said Lord Ronald,
O and proudly stood she up!
Her heart within her did not fail : She looked into Lord Ronald's eyes, And told him all her nurse's tale.
He laughed a laugh of merry scorn:
He turned and kissed her where she stood: "If you are not the heiress born,
And I," said he, "the next in blood
"If you are not the heiress born,
And I," said he, "the lawful heir, We two will wed to-morrow morn,
And you shall still be Lady Clare.”
THE LORD OF BURLEIGH.
In her ear he whispers gayly,
"If my heart by signs can tell, Maiden, I have watched thee daily,
And I think thou lov'st me well.” She replies, in accents fainter,
"There is none I love like thee." He is but a landscape-painter,
And a village maiden she. He to lips, that fondly falter,
Presses his without reproof; Leads her to the village altar,
And they leave her father's roof. "I can make no marriage present; Little can I give my wife.
VOL. I. 16
Love will make our cottage pleasant,
See the lordly castles stand:
Hears him lovingly converse,
Lay betwixt his home and hers; Parks with oak and chestnut shady,
Parks and ordered gardens great, Ancient homes of lord and lady,
Built for pleasure and for state. All he shows her makes him dearer:
Evermore she seems to gaze On that cottage growing nearer,
Where they twain will spend their days. O but she will love him truly!
He shall have a cheerful home; She will order all things duly,
When beneath his roof they come. Thus her heart rejoices greatly,
Till a gateway she discerns With armorial bearings stately,
And beneath the gate she turns; Sees a mansion more majestic
Than all those she saw before;
Bows before him at the door.
And, while now she wonders blindly,
Her sweet face from brow to chin:
And her spirit changed within. Then her countenance all over
Pale again as death did prove : But he clasped her like a lover,
And he cheered her soul with love. So she strove against her weakness, Though at times her spirit sank: Shaped her heart with woman's meekness To all duties of her rank: And a gentle consort made he, And her gentle mind was such That she grew a noble lady,
And the people loved her much. But a trouble weighed upon her,
And perplexed her, night and morn, With the burthen of an honor
Unto which she was not born. Faint she grew, and ever fainter,
As she murmured, “O, that he Were once more that landscape-painter Which did win my heart from me!" So she drooped and drooped before him, Fading slowly from his side: Three fair children first she bore him, Then before her time she died. Weeping, weeping late and early, Walking up and pacing down,
SIR LAUNCELOT AND QUEEN GUINEVERE.
Deeply mourned the Lord of Burleigh,
And he looked at her and said,
Bore to earth her body, drest
That her spirit might have rest.
SIR LAUNCELOT AND QUEEN GUINE-
LIKE souls that balance joy and pain,
In crystal vapor everywhere
Sometimes the linnet piped his song: