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CIRCUMSTANCE.

Two children in two neighbour villages
Playing mad pranks along the heathy leas;
Two strangers meeting at a festival ;
Two lovers whispering by an orchard wall ;
Two lives bound fast in one with golden ease ;
Two graves grass-green beside a gray church-tower,
Wash'd with still rains and daisy-blossomed ;
Two children in one hamlet born and bred;
So runs the round of life from hour to hour.

THE MERMAN.

Who would be
A merman bola,
Sitting alone,
Singing alone
Under the sea,
With a crown of gold,
On a throne ?

I would be a merman bold; I would sit and sing the whole of the day; I would fill the sea-halls with a voice of power ; But at night I would roam abroad and play With the mermaids in and out of the rocks, Dressing their hair with the white sea-flower ; And holding them back by their flowing locks I would kiss them often under the sea, And kiss them again till they kiss'd me

Laughingly, laughingly; And then we would wander away, away To the pale-green sea-groves straight and high,

Chasing each other merrily

There would be neither moon nor star;
But the wave would make music above us afar--
Low thunder and light in the magic night-

Neither moon nor star.
We would call aloud in the dreamy dells,
Call to each other and whoop and cry

All night, merrily, merrily;
They would pelt me with starry spangles and shells,
Laughing and clapping their hands between,

All night, merrily, merrily :
But I would throw to them back in mine
Turkis and agate and almondine :
Then leaping out upon them unseen
I would kiss them often under the sea,
And kiss them again till they kiss'd me

Laughingly, laughingly.
Oh! what a happy life were mine
Under the hollow-hung ocean green!
Soft are the moss-beds under the sea ;
We would live merrily, merrily,

THE MERMAID.

Who would be
A mermaid fair,
Singing alone,
Combing her hair
Under the sea,
In a golden curl
With a comb of pearl,
On a throne ?

2. I would be a mermaid fair; I would sing to myself the whole of the day; With a comb of pearl I would comb my hair ; And still as I comb'd I would sing and say, “Who is it loves me? who loves not me ?I would comb my hair till my ringlets would fall

Low adown, low adown,
From under my starry sea-bud crown

Low adown and around,
And I should look like a fountain of gold

Springing alone
With a shrill inner sound,

Over the throne

In the midst of the hall; Till that great sea-snake under the sea From his coiled sleeps in the central deeps Would slowly trail himself sevenfold Round the hall where I sate, and look in at the gata With his large calm eyes for the love of me. And all the mermen under the sea Would feel their immortality Die in their hearts for the love of me.

3.

But at night I would wander away, away,

I would fling on each side my low-flowing locks, And lightly vault from the throne and play

With the mermen in and out of the rocks ; We would run to and fro, and hide and seek,

On the broad sea-wolds in the crimson shells,

Whose silvery spikes are nighest the sea. But if any came near I would call, and shriek, And adown the steep like a wave I would leap

From the diamond-ledges that jut from the dells ; For I would not be kiss'd by all who would list, Of the bold merry mermen under the sea; They would sue me, and woo me, and flatter me, In the purple twilights under the sea ; But the king of them all would carry me, Woo me, and win me, and marry me,

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