Successful Recitations eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 540 pages of information about Successful Recitations.

                Will, can you recall
          The time we were lost on the Bright Down? 
                Coming home late in the day,
                As Susie was kneeling to pray,
          Little blue eyes and white night-gown,
          Saying, “Our Father, who art,—­
          Art what?” so she stayed with a start. 
          “In Heaven,” your mother said softly. 
          And Susie sighed, “So far away!”—­
          ’Tis nearer, Will, now, to us all.

It is strange how that fellow sleeps! stranger still that his sleep
     should haunt me;
If I could but command his face, to make sure of the lesser ill: 
I will crawl to his side and see, for what should there be to daunt
     me? 
What there! what there!  Holy Father in Heaven, not Will!

               Will, dead Will! 
          Lying here, I could not feel you! 
               Will, brave Will! 
          Oh, alas, for the noble end! 
               Will, dear Will! 
          Since no love nor remorse could heal you,
               Will, good Will! 
          Let me die on your breast, old friend!

SANTA FILOMENA.

(FLORENCE NIGHTINGALE.)

BY H. W. LONGFELLOW.

[It was the practice of Florence Nightingale to pay a last visit to the wards of the military hospital in the Crimea after the doctors and the other nurses had retired for the night.  Bearing a light in her hand she passed from bed to bed and from ward to ward, until she became known as “the Lady with the Lamp.”]

Whene’er a noble deed is wrought,
Whene’er is spoken a noble thought,
Our hearts, in glad surprise,
To higher levels rise.

The tidal wave of deeper souls
Into our inmost being rolls,
And lifts us unawares,
Out of all meaner cares.

Honour to those whose words or deeds
Thus help us in our daily needs,
And by their overflow,
Raise us from what is low!

Thus thought I, as by night I read
Of the great army of the dead,
The trenches cold and damp,
The starved and frozen camp,—­

The wounded from the battle-plain,
In dreary hospitals of pain,
The cheerless corridors,
The cold and stony floors.

Lo! in that house of misery
A lady with a lamp I see
Pass through the glimmering gloom
And flit from room to room.

And slow as in a dream of bliss
The speechless sufferer turns to kiss
Her shadow, as it falls
Upon the darkening walls.

As if a door in heaven should be
Opened and then closed suddenly,
The vision came and went,
The light shone and was spent.

On England’s annals, through the long
Hereafter of her speech and song,
That light its rays shall cast
From portals of the past.

A lady with a lamp shall stand
In the great history of the land,
A noble type of good,
Heroic womanhood.

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Successful Recitations from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.