Tales eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 328 pages of information about Tales.
And she was sure “her parents if alive
Would many comforts for their child contrive:” 
The gentle Husband bade her name him one;
“No—­that,” she answered, “should for her be done;
How could she say what pleasures were around? 
But she was certain many might be found.” 
“Would she some seaport, Weymouth, Scarborough, grace?” —
“He knew she hated every watering-place.” 
“The town?”—­“What! now ’twas empty, joyless, dull?”
“In winter?”—­“No; she liked it worse when full.” 
She talk’d of building—­“Would she plan a room?” —
“No! she could live, as he desired, in gloom.” 
“Call then our friends and neighbours.”—­“He might call,
And they might come and fill his ugly hall;
A noisy vulgar set, he knew she scorn’d them all.” 
“Then might their two dear girls the time employ,
And their Improvement yield a solid joy.” —
“Solid indeed! and heavy—­oh! the bliss
Of teaching letters to a lisping miss!”
“My dear, my gentle Dorothea, say,
Can I oblige you?”—­“You may go away.” 
   Twelve heavy years this patient soul sustain’d
This wasp’s attacks, and then her praise obtain’d,
Graved on a marble tomb, where he at peace remain’d. 
   Two daughters wept their loss; the one a child
With a plain face, strong sense, and temper mild,
Who keenly felt the Mother’s angry taunt,
“Thou art the image of thy pious Aunt:” 
Long time had Lucy wept her slighted face,
And then began to smile at her disgrace. 
Her father’s sister, who the world had seen
Near sixty years when Lucy saw sixteen,
Begg’d the plain girl:  the gracious Mother smiled,
And freely gave her grieved but passive child;
And with her elder-born, the beauty bless’d,
This parent rested, if such minds can rest: 
No miss her waxen babe could so admire,
Nurse with such care, or with such pride attire;
They were companions meet, with equal mind,
Bless’d with one love, and to one point inclined;
Beauty to keep, adorn, increase, and guard,
Was their sole care, and had its full reward: 
In rising splendour with the one it reign’d,
And in the other was by care sustain’d,
The daughter’s charms increased, the parent’s yet remain’d. 
   Leave we these ladies to their daily care,
To see how meekness and discretion fare:  —
A village maid, unvex’d by want or love,
Could not with more delight than Lucy move;
The village lark, high mounted in the spring,
Could not with purer joy than Lucy sing;
Her cares all light, her pleasures all sincere,
Her duty joy, and her companion dear;
In tender friendship and in true respect
Lived Aunt and Niece, no flattery, no neglect —
They read, walk’d, visited—­together pray’d,
Together slept the matron and the maid: 
There was such goodness, such pure nature seen
In Lucy’s looks, a manner so serene;
Such harmony in motion, speech, and air,
That without fairness she was more than fair,
Project Gutenberg
Tales from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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