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CAUTIONS : a. The sense-accent or emphasis is on his; the verse-accent on steed must be avoided. b. The phrase drink cup must be uttered with a certain quiet melancholy emphasis. C. A long, but not violent, emphasis on ne'er.

MEANINGS : 1. Save, except. 2. Unarmed, without any armour. 3. Dauntless, fearless. 4. Brake, thicket. 5. Alighted, got off his horse. 6. Gallant, brave, spirited young fellow. 7. Laggard, slow-coach. Dastard, coward. 8. Craven, without any spirit. 9. Swells like the Solway, but ebbs like its tide, grows fast and dies away fast. The Solway has a wide estuary, up which the tide runs with great speed. 10. Lead but one measure, dance one dance. 11. Bar, prevent. 12. Gälliard, brave, handsome, and sprightly young man. 13. Fume, get in a rage. 14. Charger, war-horse. 15. Croup, the place behind the saddle. 16. Scaur, steep bank. 17. Forsters, Fenwicks, and Musgraves, names of families in the north of England,

THE DEATH OF THE OLD YEAR.
This is a poem by Mr. TENNYSON. The idea of it is the ordinary one that the
year is a person, and that he dies on the 31st of December. The new year is
represented as a young heir riding post-haste to see his father before he dies.
The poem expresses the natural regret or sorrow we all have in seeing another
year gone out of our lives, and what seemed like an old friend dead and beyond
recall.

Full knee-deep lies the winter snow,
And the winter winds are wearily sighing:
Toll ye the church bells sad and slow,
And tread softly and speak low,
For the Old Year lies a-dying.

Old Year, you must not die;
You came to us só readily,
You lived with us só steadily,o

Old Year, you shall not die.
He lieth still,

he doth not move :
He will not see the dawn of day,
He

other life above."
He gave me a friend, and a true true-love,'
And the New Year will take 'em away.

Old Year, you must not go;
So long as you have been with us,
Such joy as you have seen with us,

Old Year, you shall not go.
He frothed? his bumpers to the brim;
A jollier Year we shall not see:
But though his eyes are waxingo dim,
And though his foes speak ill of him,
He was a friend to me.

hath no

THE COLLIER'S DYING CHILD.

117

Old Year, you shall not die.
We did so laugh and cry

with

you
I've half a mind to die with you,
Old Year,

if you must die.
He was full of joke and jest,
But all his merry quips4 are o'er;
To see him die, across the waste
His son and heir doth ride post-haste,
But he'll be dead before.

Every one for his own.
The night is starry and cold, my friend;
And the New Year blythe and bold, my friend,

Comes up to take his own.
How hard he breathes ! over the snow
I heard just now the crowing cock;
The shadows flicker to and fro;
The cricket chirps; the light burns low :
'Tis nearly twelve o'clock.

Shake hands before you die :
Old Year, we'll dearly rue for you,
What is it we can do for you?
Speak out

before you die.
His face is growing sharp and thin,
Alack! our friend is gòne:
his eyes; tie up

his chin;
Step from the corpse, and let him in
That standeth there alone,

And waiteth at the door.
There's a new foot on the floor, my friend,
And a new face at the door, my friend,

A new face at the door. CAUTIONS : : a. The change from the mere narrative in the first four lines to the conversational tone in the second four must be noted, and requires considerable care in the reading. b. Wearily has a pause after it in order to give it a long emphasis. c. The same is the case with so. d. He has no other life above, in contradistinction to human beings. e. The emphasis on him contradicts the verse-accent.

MEANINGS: 1. True-love, sweetheart. 2. Frothed, filled and headed with froth. 3. Waxing, the Old English word for growing. 4. Quips, small jokes. It is a brother word to quibble.

Close up

THE COLLIER'S DYING CHILD. This is a short poem on the death of the only child of a poor collier. It should be read with great clearness and slowness.

The cottage was a thatched one, its outside old and mean; Yet everything within that cot was wondrous neat and clean :

The night was dark and stormy,—the wind was blowing wild ;
A patient mother sat beside the death-bed of her child, -
A little, worn-out creature, his once bright eyes grown dim:
It was a collier's only child—they called him "Little Jim.”
And oh, to see the briny tears fast flowing down her cheek,
As she offered up a prayer in thought !--she was afraid to speak,
Lest she might waken one she loved far dearer than her life;
For she had all a mother's heart, that wretched collier's wife.
With hands uplifted, see, she kneels beside the sufferer's bed,
And prays that God will spare her boy, and take herself instead :
She gets her answer from the child-soft fall these words from

him,“Mother! the angels do so smile, and beckon ‘Little Jim'!" “I have no pain, dear mother, now; but, oh! I am so dry; Just moisten poor Jim's lips once more; and, mother, do not cry!" With gentle, trembling haste she held a tea-cup to his lipsHe smiled to thank her—then he took three little tiny sips. "Tell father, when he comes from work, I said “Good night' to

him ; And, mother, now I'll go to sleep." Alas! poor “Little Jim!” She saw

that he was dying! The child she loved so dear Had uttered the last words she'd ever wish to hear. The cottage door is opened—the collier's step is heard ; The father and the mother meet, but neither speak a word: He felt that all was over-he knew the child was dead! He took the candle in his hand, and stood beside the bed : His quivering lip gave token of the grief he'd faino conceal; And see, the mother joins him !—the stricken couple kneel; With hearts bowed down by sorrow, they humbly ask of Him In heaven once more that they may meet their own poor “Little Jim !"

FARMER. CAUTION: There is no instance in this poem of the verse-accent misleading. The lines are very easy to read, if the reader sympathises with the feeling in them.

MEANINGS : 1. Briny, salt. 2. Fain, like to.

SOMEBODY'S SÓN. In the American War of 1861-5, many soldiers were killed whose names were not known, and of whom no tidings ever went to their friends; and many families are still in mourning for sons of whom they have never since heard. To prevent this terrible evil, every German soldier in the Franco-German war of 1870-1, had his name and address written on leather and sewn inside his coat. .

INTO a ward of the whitewashed halls,

Where the dead and dying lay,

THE COMPLAINTS OF THE POOR.

119

Wounded by bayonets, shells, and balls,

Somebody's Son was borne one day-
Somebody's Son, so young and brave,

Wearing yet on his pale sweet face,
Soon to be hid by the dust of the grave,

The lingering light of his boyhood's grace.

Matted and damp are the curls of gold,

Kissing the snow of that fair young brow,
Pale are the lips of delicate mould-

Somebody's Child is dying now.
Back from his beautiful blue-veined brow

Brush all the wandering waves of gold;
Cross his hands on his bosom now,

Somebody's Darling is still and cold. CAUTION: The dactyls introduced have a tendency to make the reading of these verses too rapid, tripping, and (to coin a word) jumpy. Great care must be taken to avoid this; and the lines must be read with great slowness and solemnity,

O

THE COMPLAINTS OF THE POOR. Two men are talking about the poor; and one of them says, “I don't see that the poor have much to grumble about.” “Would you like to know,” replies the other, “what the poor have to complain of? Then come with me." They go out; and the rich man gets his answer.

“And wherefore do the poor complain ?”

The rich man asked of me; b
“ Come walk abroad with me," I said,

“ And I will answer thee.”

'Twas evening,

and the frozen streets
Were cheerless to behold;
And we were wrapped and coated well,

And yet we were a-cold.
We met an old, bare-headed man;

His locks were few and white;
I asked him what he did abroad

In that cold winter's night.a

'Twas bitter keen, indeed, he said,

But at home no fire had he,
And therefore he had come abroad

To ask for charity,

We met a young bare-footed child,

And she begged loud and bold;
I asked her what she did abroad,

When the wind it blew so cold.

She said her father was at home,

And he lay sick in bed;
And therefore was it she was sent

Abroad to beg for bread.
We saw a woman sitting down

Upon a stone to rest;
She had'a baby at her back,

And another at her breast.
I asked her why she loitered there,

When the night-wind was 6 so chill ;
She turned her head, and bade the child

That screamed behind be still.
She told us that her husband served,

A soldier, far away;
And therefore to her parish' she

Was begging back her way.
I turned me to the rich man then,

For silently stood he;-
“You asked me why the poor complain,
And these have answered thee."

SOUTHEY.

CAUTIONS: This poem is easy enough to understand, but very difficult to read, as the verse accent and the sense-accent are constantly interfering with each other. The greatest care must therefore be taken to make the right pauses, and to group together the right words. a. The very first line contains this difficulty. The verse-accent is on do. It should be read thus :

“ And-wherefore do-the-poor-complain ?” b. The verse-accent on me must be carefully avoided, and the line read just as if it were prose.

c. This line must also be read as if it were prose, and without any accent on thee. d. This line must be read with great slowness. e. Avoid the verse-accent on she. f. Avoid the verse-accent on had. g. Avoid the verse. accent on was. Make a short pause after wind, and dwell as long as you can upon so and chill. h. The pause after therefore will enable the reader to avoid the accent on to. i. This line must be read slowly and impressively, but just as if it were prose.

MEANINGS : 1. Parish, the place where she had lived, and upon which she had a claim by law; she meant to live in the workhouse until her husband came back.

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