New National Fourth Reader eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 258 pages of information about New National Fourth Reader.

rapt’ure, great joy; delight.

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  “Little lad, slow wandering across the sands so yellow,
  Leading safe a lassie small—­O tell me, little fellow,
  Whither go you, loitering in the summer weather,
  Chattering like sweet-voiced birds on a bough together?”

  “I am Robert, if you please, and this is Rose, my sister,
  Youngest of us all”—­he bent his curly head and kissed her,
  “Every day we come and wait here till the sun is setting,
  Watching for our father’s ship, for mother dear is fretting.

  “Long ago he sailed away, out of sight and hearing,
  Straight across the bay he went, into sunset steering. 
  Every day we look for him, and hope for his returning,
  Every night my mother keeps the candle for him burning.

  “Summer goes, and winter comes, and spring returns but never
  Father’s step comes to the gate.  O, is he gone forever? 
  The great, grand ship that bore him off, think you some tempest wrecked her?”
  Tears shone in little Rose’s eyes, upturned to her protector.

  Eagerly the bonny boy went on:  “O, sir, look yonder! 
  In the offing see the sails that east and westward wander;
  Every hour they come and go, the misty distance thronging. 
  While we watch and see them fade, with sorrow and with longing.”

  “Little Robert, little Rose!” The stranger’s eyes were glistening
  At his bronzed and bearded face, upgazed the children, listening;
  He knelt upon the yellow sand, and clasped them to his bosom,
  Robert brave, and little Rose, as bright as any blossom.

  “Father, father!  Is it you?” The still air rings with rapture;
  All the vanished joy of years the waiting ones recapture! 
  Finds he welcome wild and sweet, the low-thatched cottage reaching,
  But the ship that into sunset steered, upon the rocks lies bleaching.


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Directions for Reading.—­Read the conversational parts of this poem like conversation in prose.

Point out the emphatic words in the first line of the last stanza.

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Language Lesson.—­Into sunset steering, means sailing westward.

The misty distance thronging, means gathering together in the distance.

The still air rings with rapture, means that the air becomes full of joyful shouts.

All the vanished joy of years the waiting ones recapture, means that the children regain the happiness lost during their father’s absence.

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impos’ing, grand looking; of great size.

glar’ing, fierce looking.

Project Gutenberg
New National Fourth Reader from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.