Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB

MAUD MÜLLER.

With weeping, and with laughter still is the story told,
How well Horatius kept the bridge in the brave days of old.
LORD MACAULAY.

CAUTIONS: a. Avoid the verse-accent on the. Read: By-the-nine-gods he-swore. b. Avoid the verse-accent on upon. A slight pause after man and a very slight emphasis on this will enable the reader to do this. c. Take great care not to place any emphasis on thee. d. Avoid the verse-accent upon as. Read: And-a-long-shout of-triumph. f. Carefully avoid the verse-accent upon to. The reader should hasten to the word highest. g. Avoid the verse-accent upon our. Hasten on to good father. h. Hasten on to cold north.

e.

141

MEANINGS: 1. Trysting, meeting. 2. The Fathers of the City, the Senate or parliament composed of the elders. 3. Van, the part of an army which marches first. 4. Strait, narrow. 5. Harness, armour. 6. Surges, waves. 7. Ensigns, flags, banners. 8. Vanguard, front part of the army. 9. Plied, used. 10. Athwart, across. 11. Deigning, condescending. 12. Craven, coward. 13. Rapturous, full of joy. 14. Gory, that had shed much blood. 15. Algidus, a forest near Rome.

RUTH.

These beautiful verses are by THOMAS HOOD. They describe Ruth in the fields of Boaz. "And she went, and came, and gleaned in the field."-Ruth ii. 3.

SHE stood, breast-high, amid the corn,
Clasped by the golden light of morn,
Like the sweetheart of the sun,
Whom many a glowing kiss has won.

And her hat, with shady brim,

Made her tressy' forehead dim:
Thus she stood amid the stooks,2
Praising God with sweetest looks.

CAUTIONS: a. Each syllable of breast-high must be equally accented. b. Carefully avoid the verse-accent on of. A slight pause after sweetheart will enable the reader to do this.

MEANINGS: 1. Tressy, covered with her hair. 2. Stooks, shocks.

MAUD MÜLLER.

Written by J. G. WHITTIER, an American poet, still living.

MAUD MÜLLER, on a summer's day,
Raked the meadow sweet with hay.
Beneath her torn hat glowed the wealth
Of simple beauty and rustic health.
Singing, she wrought, and her merry glee
The mock-bird echoed from his tree.

But, when she glanced to the far-off town,
White from its hill-slope looking down,

The sweet song died, and a vague unrest
And a nameless longing filled her breast-
A wish, that she hardly dared to own,
For something better than she had known.
The Judge rode slowly down the lane,
Smoothing his horse's chestnut mane.
He drew his bridle in the shade
Of the apple-trees, to greet the maid,

And ask a draught from the spring that flowed Through the meadows across the road.

She stooped where the cool spring bubbled up,
And filled for him her small tin cup,

And blushed as she gave it, looking down
On her feet so bare, and her tattered gown.
"Thanks!" said the Judge, "a sweeter draught
From a fairer hand was never quaffed.”

He spoke of the grass, and flowers, and trees,
Of the singing birds and the humming bees;
Then talked of the haying, and wondered whether
The cloud in the west would bring foul weather.

And Maud forgot her briar-torn gown,
And her graceful ankles bare and brown;
And listened, while a pleased surprise
Looked from her long-lashed hazel eyes.
At last, like one who for delay
Seeks a vain excuse, he rode away.

Maud Müller looked and sighed: "Ah, me!
That I the Judge's bride might be !

"He would dress me up
And praise and toast me
"My father should wear a broad-cloth coat;
My brother should sail a painted boat.

in silks so fine,

at his wine.

"I'd dress my mother so grand and gay,

And the baby should have a new toy each day.

"And I'd feed the hungry
And all should bless me
The Judge looked back as he climbed the hill,
And saw Maud Müller standing still.

and clothe the poor, who left our door."

THE WELL OF ST. KEYNE.

"A form more fair, a face more sweet,
Ne'er hath it been my lot to meet.
"And her modest answer and graceful air,
Show her wise and good as she is fair.
"Would she were mine, and I to-day,
Like her a harvester of hay:

"No doubtful balance of rights and wrongs,
And weary lawyers with endless tongues,
"But low of cattle and song of birds,
And health of quiet and loving words."
But he thought of his sisters, proud and cold,
And his mother, vain of her rank and gold.
So, closing his heart, the Judge rode on,
And Maud was left in the field alone.

But the lawyers smiled that afternoon,
When he hummed in court an old love-tune;
And the young girl mused beside the well,
Till the rain on the unraked clover fell.

He wedded a wife of richest dower,
Who lived for fashion, as he for power.
Yet oft, in his marble hearth's bright glow,
He watched a picture come and go:
And sweet Maud Müller's hazel eyes
Looked out in their innocent surprise.
Oft when the wine in his glass was red,
He longed for the wayside well instead;
And closed his eyes on his garnished rooms,
To dream of meadows and clover blooms.

THE WELL OF ST. KEYNE.

1

This is a poem by ROBERT SOUTHEY (who was poet-laureate before Wordsworth, and died in 1843) on a Cornish custom. The tradition goes that whichever of two married persons shall drink first of the well of St. Keyne, will always have the mastery over the other.

A WELL there is in the west countree,
And a clearer one never was seen;
There is not a wife in the west countree
But has heard of the well of St. Keyne.

143

1

An oak and an elm-tree stand beside,
And behind doth an ash-tree grow,
And a willow from the bank above
Droops to the water below.

A traveller came to the well of St. Keyne,
Joyfully he drew nigh,

For from cock-crow he had been travelling,
And there was not a cloud in the sky.

He drank of the water so cool and clear,
For thirsty and hot was he,
And he sat down upon the bank
Under the willow-tree.

There came a man from the house hard by
At the well to fill his pail;

b

On the well-side he rested it,

And he bade the stranger hail.

"Now art thou a bachelor, stranger ?" quoth he, "For an if thou hast a wife,

The happiest draught thou hast drunk this day,
That ever thou didst in thy life.

"Or hath thy good woman, if one thou hast, Ever here in Cornwall been ?

For an if she have, I'll venture my life,"
She has drunk of the well of St. Keyne."

"I have left a good woman who never was here," The stranger he made reply;

"But that my draught should be better for that, I pray you answer me why?"

d

"St. Keyne," quoth the Cornishman, "many a time
Drank of this crystal well,
And before the angels summon'd her,
She laid on the water a spell.

"If the husband of this gifted well
Shall drink before his wife,
A happy man thenceforth is he,
For he shall be master for life.

"But if the wife should drink of it first, God help the husband then!"

The stranger stooped to the well of St. Keyne,
And drank of the water again.

A WET SHEET AND A FLOWING SEA.

"You drank of the well I warrant betimes?"

He to the Cornishman said:

But the Cornishman smiled as the stranger spake,
And sheepishly shook his head.

"I hastened as soon as the wedding was done,
And left my wife in the porch;

But i' faith she had been wiser than I,
For she took a bottle to church."

CAUTIONS: a. The word countrée must be pronounced with the accent on the last syllable, as it is pronounced in the old ballads. b. The pause in this line seems to make up for the absence of the sufficient number of accents. c. An if is the old phrase for if; and the accent must be put upon the if. d. Take care not to let the accent touch the word of. The accent and the emphasis fall upon this.

A WET SHEET AND A FLOWING SEA.

A WET sheet and a flowing sea,
A wind that follows fast,

And fills the white and rustling sail,

And bends the gallant mast-
And bends the gallant mast,
While like the eagle free,
Away the good ship flies, and leaves
Old England on the lee.2

my boys,—

Oh for a soft and gentle wind!
I heard a fair one cry.

But give to me the snoring breeze,
And white waves heaving high-
And white waves heaving high, my boys-
The good ship tight and free;
The world of waters is our home,

And merry men are we.

There's tempest in yon hornëd moon,
And lightning in yon cloud;
And hark the music, mariners!
The wind is piping loud;

The wind is piping loud, my boys,
The lightning flashing free;
While the hollow oak our palace is,
Our heritage the sea.

145

CAUTIONS: a. Avoid the verse-accent on like, and read: like-the-eàgle. b. Read Oh-for-a-soft, etc. c. The emphasis is on home, and the sense therefore dwells upon it.

MEANINGS: 1. Sheet, the rope that holds the sail. 2. On the lee, behind us.

L

« AnteriorContinuar »