Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB

opment. Two boys were once of a class in the Edinburgh grammar-school: John ever trim, precise, and dux; Walter ever slovenly, confused, and dolt. In due time John became Baillie John of Hunter-Square, and Walter became Sir Walter Scott of the Universe.

The quickest and completest of all vegetables is the cabbage.

THE MOUNTAIN AND THE SQUIRREL.

R. W. EMERSON.

The Mountain and the Squirrel
Had a quarrel,
And the former called the latter “Little Prig,”
Bun replied :
“ You are doubtless very big;
But all sorts of things and weather
Must be taken in together
To make up a year,
And a sphere;
And I think it no disgrace
To occupy my place.
If I'm not so large as you,
You're not so small as I,
And not half so spry;
I'll not deny you make
A very pretty squirrel track.
Talents differ; all is well and wisely put;
If I cannot carry forests on my back,
Neither can you crack a nut.”

THE LARK AND THE ROOK.

ANONYMOUS.

[ocr errors]

“GOOD-NIGHT, Sir Rook!” said a little lark, “ The daylight fades; it will soon be dark; I've bathed my wings in the sun's last ray, I've sung my hymn to the parting day; So now I haste to my quiet nook In yon dewy meadow - good-night, Sir Rook !”

“Good-night, poor Lark,” said his titled friend, With a haughty toss and a distant bend; “I also go to my rest profound, But not to sleep on the cold, damp ground: The fittest place for a bird like me Is the topmost bough of yon tall pine-tree.

“I opened my eyes at peep of day
And saw you taking your upward way,
Dreaming your fond romantic dreams,
An ugly speck in the sun's bright beams,
Soaring too high to be seen or heard,
And I said to myself: “What a foolish bird !'

“I trod the park with a princely air,
I filled my crop with the richest fare;
I cawed all day ’mid a lordly crew,
And I made more noise in the world than you!
The sun shone forth on my ebon wing;
I looked and wondered — good-night, poor thing!”

“Good-night, once more,” said the lark's sweet voice, “I see no cause to repent my choice; You build your nest in the lofty pine, But is your slumber more sweet than mine? You make more noise in the world than I, But whose is the sweeter minstrelsy?”

THE GOOSE WITH THE GOLDEN EGGS.

Æsop.

A CERTAIN man had the good fortune to possess a goose which laid him a golden egg every day. But dissatisfied with so slow an income, and thinking to seize the whole treasure at once, he killed the goose and, cutting her open, found her just what any other goose would be.

Much wants more and loses all.

THE CAMEL'S NOSE.

Lydia H. SIGOURNEY.

ONCE in his shop a workman wrought,
With languid head and listless thought,
When, through the open window's space,
Behold, a camel thrust his face!
“My nose is cold,” he meekly cried,
“Oh, let me warm it by thy side!”

Since no denial word was said,
In came the nose, in came the head:
As sure as sermon follows text,
The long and scraggy neck came next;
And then, as falls the threatening storm,
In leaped the whole ungainly form.
Aghast, the owner gazed around,
And on the rude invader frowned,
Convinced, as closer still he pressed,
There was no room for such a guest;
Yet more astonished, heard him say,
“ If thou art troubled, go away,
For in this place I choose to stay.”

O youthful hearts to gladness born,
Treat not this Arab lore with scorn!
To evil habits' earliest wile
Lend neither ear, nor glance, nor smile;
Choke the dark fountain ere it flows,
Nor e'en admit the camel's nose !

THE WOODPECKER AND THE DOVE.

TRANSLATED BY EDITORS. FROM THE GERMAN.

A WOODPECKER and a Dove had been visiting a Peacock. “How did you like our host ?” asked the Woodpecker after they had left. “Is he not a disagreeable creature ? His vanity, his shapeless feet, his horrid voice, are unbearable, aren't they ?”

“I had no time," answered the gentle dove, “to notice these things,” I was so occupied with the beauty of his head, the gorgeousness of his colors, and the majesty of his train.”

THE DEW-DROP.

RICHARD C. TRENCH.

A DEW-DROP, falling on the ocean-wave,
Exclaimed, in fear, “I perish in this grave!
But, in a shell received, that drop of dew
Unto a pearl of marvellous beauty grew;
And, happy now, the grace did magnify
Which thrust it forth — as it had feared to die;
Until again, “I perish quite !” it said,
Torn by rude diver from its ocean bed :
0, unbelieving ! — So it came to gleam
Chief jewel in a monarch's diadem.

THE MISER AND HIS THREE SONS.

GOLDSMITH.

Poor Dick, the happiest silly fellow I ever knew, was of the number of those good-natured creatures that are said to do no harm to any but themselves. Whenever he fell into any misery, he called it “seeing life.” If his head was broken by a chairman, or his pocket picked by a sharper, he comforted himself by imitating

« AnteriorContinuar »