Tales eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 328 pages of information about Tales.
But one may wonder, he is silent yet;
He looks around him with his usual stare,
And utters nothing—­not that I shall care.” 
   This pettish humour pleased th’ experienced Friend —
None need despair, whose silence can offend;
“Should I,” resumed the thoughtful Lass, “consent
To hear the man, the man may now repent: 
Think you my sighs shall call him from the plough,
Or give one hint, that ‘You may woo me now?’”
   “Persist, my love,” replied the Friend, “and gain
A parent’s praise, that cannot be in vain.” 
   The father saw the change, but not the cause,
And gave the alter’d maid his fond applause: 
The coarser manners she in part removed,
In part endured, improving and improved;
She spoke of household works, she rose betimes,
And said neglect and indolence were crimes;
The various duties of their life she weigh’d,
And strict attention to her dairy paid;
The names of servants now familiar grew,
And fair Lucinda’s from her mind withdrew;
As prudent travellers for their ease assume
Their modes and language to whose lands they come;
So to the Farmer this fair Lass inclined,
Gave to the business of the Farm her mind;
To useful arts she turned her hand and eye;
And by her manners told him—­“You may try.” 
   Th’ observing Lover more attention paid,
With growing pleasure, to the alter’d maid;
He fear’d to lose her, and began to see
That a slim beauty might a helpmate be: 
’Twixt hope and fear he now the lass address’d,
And in his Sunday robe his love express’d: 
She felt no chilling dread, no thrilling joy,
Nor was too quickly kind, too slowly coy;
But still she lent an unreluctant ear
To all the rural business of the year;
Till love’s strong hopes endured no more delay,
And Harry ask’d, and Nancy named the day. 
   “A happy change! my Boy,” the father cried: 
“How lost your sister all her school-day pride?”
The Youth replied, “It is the Widow’s deed;
The cure is perfect and was wrought with speed. 
And comes there, Boy, this benefit of books,
Of that smart dress, and of those dainty looks? 
We must be kind—­some offerings from the Farm
To the White Cot will speak our feelings warm;
Will show that people, when they know the fact,
Where they have judged severely, can retract. 
Oft have I smiled, when I beheld her pass
With cautious step as if she hurt the grass;
Where, if a snail’s retreat she chanced to storm,
She look’d as begging pardon of the worm;
And what, said I, still laughing at the view,
Have these weak creatures in the world to do? 
But some are made for action, some to speak;
And, while she looks so pitiful and meek,
Her words are weighty, though her nerves are weak.’ 
   Soon told the village-bells the rite was done,
That joined the school-bred Miss and Farmer’s Son;
Her former habits some slight scandal raised,
But real worth was soon perceived and praised;
She, her neat taste imparted to the Farm,
And he, th’ improving skill and vigorous arm.

Project Gutenberg
Tales from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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