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“A moment, I pray your attention!—I have a poor word in my head
I must utter, though womanly custom would set it down better unsaid.
“You grew, sir, pale to impertinence, once when I showed you a ring.
You kissed my fan when I dropped it. No matter! I've broken the thing.
“You did me the honor, perhaps, to be moved at my side now and then
In the senses, a vice, I have heard, which is common to beasts and some men.
“Love's a virtue for heroes!—as white as the snow on high hills,
And immortal as every great soul is that struggles, endures, and fulfils.
“I love my Walter profoundly,–you, Maude, though you faltered a week,
For the sake of . . . what was it? an eyebrow? or, less still, a mole on a cheek?
“And since, when all's said, you're too noble to stoop to the frivolous cant
About crimes irresistible, virtues that swindle, betray, and supplant,
“I’ve determined to prove to yourself that, whate'er you might dream or avow
By illusion, you wanted precisely no more of me than you have now.
“There! Look me full in the face!—in the face. Understand, if you can,
That the eyes of such women as I am are clean as the palm of a man.
“Drop his hand, you insult him. Avoid us for fear we should cost you a scar,
You take us for harlots, I tell you, and not for the WOImen We are.
"You wronged me: but then I considered . . there's Walter! And so at the end,
I vowed that he should not be mulcted, by me, in the hand of a friend.
“Have I hurt you indeed? We are quits then. Nay, friend of my Walter, be mine!
Come, Dora, my darling, my angel, and help me to ask him to dine.”
THE ORIGIN OF THE HARP.
'Tis believed that this harp which I wake now for thee
Was a siren of old who sung under the sea;
And who often at eve through the bright billow roved
To meet on the green shore a youth whom she loved.
But she loved him in vain, for he left her to weep,
And in tears all the night her gold ringlets to steep,
Till Heaven looked with pity on true love so Warm,
And changed to this soft harp the sea-maiden's form!
Still her bosom rose fair—still her cheek smiled
the same— While her sea-beauties gracefully curled round the frame; And her hair, shedding tear-drops from all its bright rings,
Fell over her white arm, to make the gold strings! Hence it came that this soft harp so long hath been known
To mingle love's language with sorrow's sad tone;
Till thou didst divide them, and teach the fond lay
To be love when I’m near thee and grief when away!
SIR WALTER SCOTT.
O, young Lochinvar is come out of the west,
best; And save his good broadsword, he weapons had
none, He rode all unarm’d, and he rode all alone. So faithful in love, and so dauntless in war, There never was knight like the young Lochin
He staid not for brake, and he stopp'd not for stone, He swam the Eske river where ford there was none; But ere he alighted at Netherby gate, The bride had consented, the gallant came late:
For a laggard in love, and a dastard in war,
So boldly he enter'd the Netherby Hall,
Among bride's-men, and kinsmen, and brothers, and all:
Then spoke the bride's father, his hand on his sword,
(For the poor craven bridegroom said never a word,)
“O come ye in peace here, or come ye in war,
Or to dance at our bridal, young Lord Lochinvar?”—
“I long wooed your daughter, my suit you denied;—
Love swells like the Solway, but ebbs like its tide;—
And now am I come, with this lost love of mine
To lead but one measure, drink one cup of wine.
There are maidens in Scotland more lovely by far,
That would gladly be bride to the young Lochinvar.”
The bride kiss'd the goblet: the knight took it up, He quaff'd off the wine, and he threw down the cup.