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The broadest lands in all the town,
The skill to guide, the power to awe,
Were Harden's; and his word was law.
None dared withstand him to his face,
But one sly maiden spake aside:
"The little witch is evil-eyed!
Her mother only killed a cow,

Or witched a churn or dairy-pan;
But she, forsooth, must charm a man!"


Poor Mabel, in her lonely home,
Sat by the window's narrow pane,
White in the moonlight's silver rain.
She strove to drown her sense of wrong,
And, in her old and simple way,
To teach her bitter heart to pray.


Poor child! the prayer, begun in faith,
Grew to a low, despairing cry
Of utter misery: "Let me die!
Oh! take me from the scornful eyes,
And hide me where the cruel speech
And mocking finger may not reach!


"I dare not breathe my mother's name:
A daughter's right I dare not crave
To weep above her unblest grave!
Let me not live until my heart,

With few to pity, and with none
To love me, hardens into stone.
O God! have mercy on thy child,

Whose faith in thee grows weak and small, And take me ere I lose it all!"


A shadow on the moonlight fell,

And murmuring wind and wave became
A voice whose burden was her name.

Had then God heard her? Had he sent
His angel down? In flesh and blood,
Before her Esek Harden stood!


He laid his hand upon her arm:
'Dear Mabel, this no more shall be;
Who scoffs at you, must scoff at me.
You know rough Esek Harden well;
And if he seems no suitor gay,

And if his hair is mixed with gray,
The maiden grown shall never find

His heart less warm than when she smiled Upon his knees, a little child!”


Her tears of grief were tears of joy,
As, folded in his strong embrace,
She looked in Esek Harden's face.
"O truest friend of all!" she said,
God bless you for your kindly thought,
And make me worthy of my lot!"


He led her through his dewy fields,

To where the swinging lanterns glowed, And through the doors the huskers showed. "Good friends and neighbors!" Esek said, "I'm weary of this lonely life; In Mabel see my chosen wife!


"She greets you kindly, one and all;
The past is past, and all offense
Falls harmless from her innocence.
Henceforth she stands no more alone;
You know what Esek Harden is;-
He brooks no wrong to him or his."


Now let the merriest tales be told,
And let the sweetest songs be sung,
That ever made the old heart young!
For now the lost has found a home;
And a lone hearth shall brighter burn,
As all the household joys return!


O, pleasantly the harvest moon,

Between the shadow of the mows,

Looked on them through the great elm-boughs! On Mabel's curls of golden hair,

On Esek's shaggy strength, it fell,

And the wind whispered, "It is well!"



HERE is no feature in the Alpine scenery more


beautiful than the wells and streamlets which make every hill-side bright with their sunny sparkle and musical with their liquid murmurs; and there are no spots so rich in mountain plants as their banks. Trace them to their source, high up above the common things of the world, and they form a crown of joy to the bare granite rocks, diffusing around them beauty and verdure like stars brightening their own rays.

2. A fringe of deeply-green moss clusters round their edges, not creeping and leaning on the rock, but growing erect in thick tufts of fragile and slender stems. Clouds of golden confervæ, like the most delicate floss-silk, float in the open centre of clear water, the ripple of which gives motion and quick play of light and shade to their graceful filaments. The Alpine willow-herb bends its tiny head from the brink, to add its rosy reflection to the exquisite harmony of coloring in the depths; the rock-veronica forms

an outer fringe of the deepest blue; while the little mosscampion enlivens the decomposing rocks in the vicinity with a continuous velvet carpeting of the brightest rose-red and the most brilliant green.

3. The indescribable loveliness of this glowing little flower strikes every one who sees it for the first time on the mountains speechless with admiration. Imagine cushions of tufted moss, with all the delicate grace of its foliage miraculously blossoming into myriads of flowers, rosier than the vermeil hue on beauty's cheek, or the cloudlet that lies nearest the setting sun, crowding upon each other so closely that the whole seems an intense floral blush, and you will have some faint idea of its marvelous beauty. We have nothing to compare with it among lowland flowers.

4. Following the course of the sparkling stream from this enchanted land, it conducts us down the slope of the hill to beds of the mountain-avens, decking the dry and stony knolls on either side with its downy procumbent leaves and large white flowers, more adapted, one would suppose, to the shelter of the woods than the bleak exposure of the mountain-side.

5. Farther down the declivity, where the stream, now increased in size, scooped out for itself a deep rocky channel, which it fills from side to side in its hours of flood and fury-hours when it is all too terrible to be approached by mortal footsteps-we find the mountain-sorrel hanging its clusters of kidney-shaped leaves and greenish rose-tipped blossoms—a grateful salad—from the beetling brows of the rocks; while, on the drier parts, we observe immense masses of the rose-root stonecrop growing where no other vegetation save lichens could exist.

6. This cactus-like plant is furnished with thick fleshy leaves, with few or no evaporating pores; which enables it to retain the moisture collected by its large, woody, penetrating root, and thus endure the long-continued drought of summer, when the stream below is shrunk down to the

green feet of its slippery stones, and the little Naiad weeps her impoverished urn.

7. Following the stream lower down, we come to a more sheltered and fertile region of the mountain, where pool succeeds pool, clear and deep, in which you can see the fishes lying motionless, or darting away like arrows when your foot shakes the bank or your shadow falls upon the water.

8. There is now a wide level margin of grass on either side, as smooth as a shaven lawn; and meandering through it, little tributary rills trickle into the stream, their marshy channels edged with rare Alpine rushes, and filled with great spongy cushions of red and green mosses, enlivened by the white blossoms of the starry saxifrage.

9. Another variety of this flower grows everywhere around in large beds richly covered with yellow flowers, dotted with spots of a deeper orange. This lovely species descends to a lower altitude than any of its congeners, and may be called the golden fringe of the richly embroidered floral mantle with which Nature covers the nakedness of the higher hills. It blooms luxuriantly among a whole host of moorland plants, sufficient to engage the untiring interest of the botanist throughout the long summer day.

10. The curious sundew, a vegetable spider, lies in wait among the red elevated moss tufts, to catch the little black flies in the deadly embrace of its viscid leaves; the bog asphodel stands near, with its sword-shaped leaves and golden helmet, like a sentinel guarding the spot; the grass of Parnassus covers the moist greensward with the bright sparkling of its autumn snow; while the cotton-grass waves on every side its downy plumes in the faintest breeze.

11. Down from this flowery region the stream flows with augmented volume, bickering over the shingle with a gay, poppling sound, and leaving creamy wreaths of winking foam between the moss-grown stones that protrude from its bed. It laves the roots of the crimson heather and the palmy leaves of the lady-fern.

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