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When are we happiest ?-in the crowded hall,
When fortune smiles, and flatterers bend the knee? How soon,-how very soon, such pleasures pall!
How fast must falsehood's rainbow colouring flee; Its poison flow'rets brave the sting of care:
We are not happy there!
Are we the happiest, when the evening hearth
Is circled with its crown of living flowers? When goeth round the laugh of harmless mirth,
And when affection from her bright urn showers Her richest balm on the dilating heart?
Bliss! is it there thou art!
Oh, no!—not there; it would be happiness
Almost like heaven's, if it might always be
And wanting nothing but eternity;
They must, they must decay.
Those voices must grow tremulous with years,
Those smiling brows must wear a tinge of gloom ; Those sparkling eyes be quench'd in bitter tears,
And, at the last, close darkly in the tomb. If happiness depends on them alone,
How quickly is it gone!
When are we happiest, then?-oh! when resign'd
To whatsoe'er our cup of life may brim; When we can know ourselves but weak and blind,
Creatures of earth! and trust alone in Him Who giveth, in his mercy, joy or pain:
Oh! we are happiest then! Miss MARY ANNE BROWNE THE SISTER'S VOICE.
“O what a voice is silent !"-Barry Cornwall.
O my sister's voice is gone away!
Around our social hearth
So full of harmless mirth-
The waving of her hair,
The hand so small and fair;
And made our hearts rejoiceSadly we mourn each vanish'd grace,
But most of all her voice.
For oh! it was so soft and sweet
When it breathed forth in words;
In echoes on their chords;
She sung a mournful song,
In triumph chorus strong;
Would soothe our bosoms' care,
In sounds of praise and prayer. 0, in my childhood, I have sate,
When that sweet voice hath breathed, Forgetful of each merry mate
Of the wild flowers I had wreathed; And though each other voice I scorn'd
That call’d me from my play, If my sweet sister only warn'd,
I never could delay.
'Twas she who sang me many a rhyme,
And told me many a tale, And many a legend of old time
That made my spirit quail.
There are a thousand pleasant sounds
Around our cottage still-
The breeze upon the hill,
The swallow in the eaves,
In passing from the leaves,
The opening flowers to wet,
To make them sweeter yet.
We stood around her dying bed,
We saw her blue eyes close;
And from her cheek the rose.
And still she strove to speak
And yet she was too weak;
That bound us like a spell; And as her spirit pass'd away,
We heard her sigh-“farewell!"
And oft since then that voice hath come
Across my heart again;
And bids me not complain :
Or the sound of a rippling stream, Or the rich deep music of a lute,
But it renews my dream,
And brings the hidden treasures forth
That lie in memory's store;
That voice I shall hear no more.
Shall still be strong in Heaven-
For peace and comfort given.
Where all the blessed meet,
Around the Saviour's feet;
In holier, purer tone
Miss MARY ANNE BROWNE.
How much the wife is dearer than the bride."
SHE stood beside him in the spring-tide hour
Shrinks like a parch'd scroll or with’ring leaf,
Mrs. C. B. WILSON.
-The Water-Lilies, that are serene in the calm clear water, but no less serene among the black and scrowling waves.—Lights and Shadows of Scottish Life.
Oh! beautiful thou art,
of a pure heart.
Bright Lily of the wave! Rising in fearless grace with every swell, Thou seem'st as if a spirit meekly brave
Dwelt in thy cell: