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THE BELLS.

(EDGAR A. POB.)
Hear the sledges with the bells-

Silver bells-
What a world of merriment their melody foretells!

How they tinkle, tinkle, tinkle,

In the icy air of night!
While the stars that oversprinkle
All the heavens, seem to twinkle

With a crystalline delight;
Keeping time, time, time,

In a sort of Runic rhyme,
To the tintinnabulation that so musically wells

From the bells, bells, bells, bells,

Bells, bells, bellsFrom the jingling and the tinkling of the bells.

Hear the mellow wedding-bells,

Golden bells !
What a world of happiness their harmony foretells !

Through the balmy air of night
How they ring out their delight!
From the molten-golden notes,

And all in tune,

What a liquid ditty floats
To the turtle dove that listens, while she gloats

On the moon !

Oh, from out the sounding cells, What a gush of euphony voluminously wells !

How it swells !

How it dwells
On the Future ! how it tells

Of the rapture that impels
To the swinging and the ringing

Of the bells, bells, bells-
Of the bells, bells, bells, bells,

Bells, bells, bells-
To the rhyming and the chiming of the bells !

Hear the loud alarum bells

Brazen bells !
What a tale of terror, now, their turbulency tells !

In the startled ear of night
How they scream out their affright!

Too much horrified to speak,
They can only shriek, shriek,

Out of tune,
In a clamorous appealing to the mercy of the fire,
In a mad expostulation with the deaf and frantic fire

Leaping higher, higher, higher,

With a desperate desire,
And a resolute endeavor,

Now—now to sit or never,
By the side of the pale-faced moon.
Oh, the bells, bells, bells !
What a tale their terror tells

Of despair!
How they clang, and clash, and roar!

What a horror they outpour
On the bosom of the palpitating air !

Yet the ear, it fully knows,

By the twanging

And the clanging,
How the danger ebbs and flows;
Yet the ear distinctly tells,

In the jangling

And the wrangling,

How the danger sinks and swells,
By the sinking or the swelling in the anger of the hells-

Or the bells-
Of the bells, bells, bells, bells,

Bells, bells, bells-
In the clamor and the clangor of the bells!

Hear the tolling of the bells

Iron bells ! What a world of solemn thought their monody compels!

In the silence of the night,

How we shiver with affright
At the melancholy menace of their tone!

For every sound that floats
From the rust within their throats

Is a groan.
And the people--ah, the people
They that dwell up in the steeple,

All alone,
And who tolling, tolling, tolling,

In that muffled monotone,
Feel a glory in so rolling

On the human heart a stone-
They are neither man nor woman-
They are neither brute nor human-

They are Ghouls :
And their king it is who tolls;
And he rolls, rolls, rolls, rolls,

A pæan from the bells!
And his merry bosom swells

With the pæan of the bells !
And he dances and he yells;
Keeping time, time, time,
In a sort of Runic rhyme,
To the pæan of the bells

Of the bells;
Keeping time, time, time,
In a sort of Runic rhyme,

To the throbbing of the bells-
Of the bells, bells, bells,

To the sobbing of the bells;
Keeping time, time, time,

As he knells, knells, knells,
In a happy Runic rhyme,

To the rolling of the bells-
Of the bells, bells, bells-

To the tolling of the bells,
Of the bells, bells, bells, bells-

Bells, bells, bells,
To the moaning and the groaning of the bells.

EXCELSIOR.

(H. W. LONGFELLOW.)
The shades of night were falling fast,
As through an Alpine village passed
A youth, who bore, mid snow and ice,
A banner with the strange device,

Excelsior!

His brow was sad; his eye, beneath,
Flashed like a falchion from its sheath ;
And like a silver clarion rung
The accents of that unknown tongue,

Excelsior!

In happy homes he saw the light
Of household fires gleam warm and bright:
Above, the spectral glaciers shone:
And from his lips escaped a groan,

Excelsior!

“ Try not to pass !" the old man said ;
“Dark lowers the tempest overhead ;
The roaring torrent is deep and wide !"-
And loud that clarion voice replied,

Excelsior!

“Oh! stay," the maiden said, “and rest
Thy weary head upon this breast !”
A tear stood in his bright blue eye;
But still he answered, with a sigh,

Excelsior!

“ Beware the pine-tree's withered branch!
Beware the awful avalanche !"
This was the peasant's last good-night;
A voice replied, far up the height,

Excelsior !

At break of day, as heavenward
The pious monks of St. Bernard
Uttered the oft repeated prayer,
A voice cried, through the startled air,

Excelsior!

A traveller,-by the faithful hound,
Half buried in the snow, was found,
Still grasping, in his hand of ice,
The banner with the strange device,

Excelsior!

There, in the twilight cold and gray,
Lifeless, but beautiful, he lay;
And from the sky, serene and far,
A voice fell, like a falling star,-

Excelsior!

THE FAMINE.

(. W. LONGFELLOW.) O the long and dreary Winter! O the cold and cruel Winter! Ever thicker, thicker, thicker, Froze the ice on lake and river; Ever deeper, deeper, deeper, Fell the snow o'er all the landscape, Fell the covering snow, and drifted Through the forest, round the village. Hardly from his buried wigwam Could the hunter force a passage; With his mittens and his snow-shoes Vainly walk'd he through the forest, Sought for bird or beast and found none; Saw no track of deer or rabbit, In the snow beheld no footprints, In the ghastly, gleaming forest Fell, and could not rise from weakness, Perish'd there from cold and hunger.

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