The Works of Charles and Mary Lamb — Volume 3 eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 755 pages of information about The Works of Charles and Mary Lamb — Volume 3.

  “Sev’n or eight times, I have no doubt. 
    But here comes William, and if he
  The good things he has heard about
    Forgets too, Sir, the fault’s in me.”

  “No, Sir,” said William, “though perplext
    And much disturbed by my sister,
  I in this matter of the text,
    I thank my memory, can assist her.

  “I have, and pride myself on having,
    A more retentive head than she.”—­
  Then gracefully his right hand waving,
    He with no little vanity

  Recited gospel, chapter, verse—­
    I should be loth to spoil in metre
  All the good words he did rehearse,
    As spoken by our Lord to Peter.

  But surely never words from heaven
    Of peace and love more full descended;
  That we should seventy times seven
    Forgive our brother that offended.

  In every point of view he plac’d it,
    As he the Doctor’s self had been,
  With emphasis and action grac’d it: 
    But from his self-conceit ’twas seen

  Who had brought home the words, and who had
    A little on the meaning thought;
  Eliza now the old man knew had
    Learn’d that which William never caught.

  Without impeaching William’s merit,
    His head but served him for the letter,
  Hers miss’d the words, but kept the spirit;
    Her memory to her heart was debtor.


  “Our Governess is not in school,
    So we may talk a bit;
  Sit down upon this little stool,
    Come, little Mary, sit: 

  “And, my dear play-mate, tell me why
    In dismal black you’re drest? 
  Why does the tear stand in your eye? 
    With sobs why heaves your breast?

  “When we’re in grief, it gives relief
    Our sorrows to impart;
  When you’ve told why, my dear, you cry,
    ’Twill ease your little heart.”

  “O, it is trouble very bad
    Which causes me to weep;
  All last night long we were so sad,
    Not one of us could sleep.

  “Beyond the seas my father went,
    ’Twas very long ago;
  And he last week a letter sent
    (I told you so, you know)

  “That he was safe in Portsmouth bay,
    And we should see him soon,
  Either the latter end of May,
    Or by the first of June.

  “The end of May was yesterday,
    We all expected him;
  And in our best clothes we were drest,
    Susan, and I, and Jim.

  “O how my poor dear mother smil’d,
    And clapt her hands for joy;
  She said to me, ’Come here, my child,
    And Susan, and my boy.

  “‘Come all, and let us think,’ said she,
    ’What we can do to please
  Your father, for to-day will he
    Come home from off the seas.

  “’That you have won, my dear young son,
    A prize at school, we’ll tell,
  Because you can, my little man,
    In writing all excel;

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The Works of Charles and Mary Lamb — Volume 3 from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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