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The wretched parents all that night
Went shouting far and wide;

But there was neither sound nor sight

To serve them for a guide.

At daybreak on a hill they stood

That overlooked the moor;

And thence they saw the bridge of wood,

A furlong from their door.

They wept-and, turning homeward, cried,

"In heaven we all shall meet: "

When in the snow the mother spied

The print of Lucy's feet.

Then downward from the steep hill's edge

They tracked the footmarks small;

And through the broken hawthorn hedge,

And by the long stone wall;

And then an open field they crossed:

The marks were still the same;

They tracked them on, nor ever lost;
And to the bridge they came.

They followed from the snowy bank

Those footmarks, one by one,

Into the middle of the plank;

And farther there were none !

Yet some maintain that to this day

She is a living child;

That you may see sweet Lucy Gray

Upon the lonesome wild.

O'er rough and smooth she trips along,

And never looks behind;

And sings a solitary song

That whistles in the wind.

1799.

WE ARE SEVEN

-A simple child,

That lightly draws its breath,
And feels its life in every limb,

What should it know of death?

I met a little cottage girl:

She was eight years old, she said;
Her hair was thick with many a curl

That clustered round her head.

She had a rustic, woodland air,

And she was wildly clad:

Her eyes were fair, and very fair;

Her beauty made me glad.

"Sisters and brothers, little maid,

How many may you be?"

"How many? Seven in all," she said,

And wondering looked at me.

"And where are they? I pray you tell."

She answered, "Seven are we ;

And two of us at Conway dwell,

And two are gone to sea.

Two of us in the churchyard lie,

My sister and my brother;

And, in the churchyard cottage, I

Dwell near them with

my mother."

"You say that two at Conway dwell,

And two are gone to sea,

Yet ye are seven !—I pray you tell,

Sweet maid, how this may be."

Then did the little maid reply,
"Seven boys and girls are we;
Two of us in the churchyard lie,
Beneath the churchyard tree."

“You run about, my little maid,

Your limbs they are alive;

If two are in the churchyard laid,

Then ye are only five."

"Their graves are green, they may be seen,"

The little maid replied,

"Twelve steps or more from my mother's door,

And they are side by side.

"My stockings there I often knit,

My kerchief there I hem;

And there upon the ground I sit,

And sing a song to them.

"And often after sunset, sir, When it is light and fair,

I take my little porringer,

And eat my supper there.

"The first that died was sister Jane;

In bed she moaning lay,

Till God released her of her pain;

And then she went away.

"So in the churchyard she was laid;

And, when the grass was dry,

Together round her grave we played,

My brother John and I.

"And when the ground was white with snow,

And I could run and slide,

My brother John was forced to go,

And he lies by her side."

"How many are you, then," said I,

"If they two are in heaven?"

Quick was the little maid's reply,

O master! we are seven.'

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