Tales eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 328 pages of information about Tales.
I find thee pious—­let me find thee true.” 
   “Ah! cruel this; but do, my friend, depart;
And to its feelings leave my wounded heart.” 
   “Nay, speak at once; and Dinah, let me know,
Mean’st thou to take me, now I’m wreck’d, in tow? 
Be fair; nor longer keep me in the dark;
Am I forsaken for a trimmer spark? 
Heaven’s spouse thou art not; nor can I believe
That God accepts her who will man deceive: 
True I am shatter’d, I have service seen,
And service done, and have in trouble been;
My cheek (it shames me not) has lost its red,
And the brown buff is o’er my features spread: 
Perchance my speech is rude; for I among
Th’ untamed have been, in temper and in tongue;
Have been trepann’d, have lived in toil and care,
And wrought for wealth I was not doom’d to share;
It touch’d me deeply, for I felt a pride
In gaining riches for my destin’d bride: 
Speak then my fate; for these my sorrows past,
Time lost, youth fled, hope wearied, and at last
This doubt of thee—­a childish thing to tell,
But certain truth—­my very throat they swell: 
They stop the breath, and but for shame could I
Give way to weakness, and with passion cry;
These are unmanly struggles, but I feel
This hour must end them, and perhaps will heal.” 
   Here Dinah sigh’d, as if afraid to speak —
And then repeated—­“They were frail and weak: 
His soul she lov’d, and hoped he had the grace
To fix his thoughts upon a better place.” 
She ceased;—­with steady glance, as if to see
The very root of this hypocrisy, —
He her small fingers moulded in his hard
And bronzed broad hand; then told her his regard,
His best respect were gone, but love had still
Hold in his heart, and govern’d yet the will —
Or he would curse her:  —­saying this, he threw
The hand in scorn away, and bade adieu
To every lingering hope, with every care in view. 
   Proud and indignant, suffering, sick, and poor,
He grieved unseen:  and spoke of love no more —
Till all he felt in indignation died,
As hers had sunk in avarice and pride. 
   In health declining, as in mind distressed,
To some in power his troubles he confess’d,
And shares a parish-gift; at prayers he sees
The pious Dinah dropp’d upon her knees;
Thence as she walks the street with stately air
As chance directs, oft meet the parted pair;
When he, with thickset coat of badgeman’s blue,
Moves near her shaded silk of changeful hue;
When his thin locks of gray approach her braid,
A costly purchase made in Beauty’s aid;
When his frank air, and his unstudied pace,
Are seen with her soft manner, air, and grace;
And his plain artless look with her sharp meaning face;
It might some wonder in a stranger move,
How these together could have talk’d of love. 
   Behold them now!—­see there a tradesman stands,
And humbly hearkens to some fresh commands;
Project Gutenberg
Tales from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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