Soon the pale scholar learneth that the star
That lured him onward leadeth to the grave;
And that full many a dull and sombre stain,
Is with life's gayer tissues deep inwrought.
And thou, my brother, o'er thy human lore
Hast ceased to cast the student's thoughtful eye!
Thou saw'st the sparkles in life's golden cup,
And fain wouldst of its various sweets have quaffed,
But never lived to taste the poison of the draught.
I oft have sat, at that still hour, when slow
From her dim hall, the purple twilight came,
And shut the shadowy landscape from the view,
To mark the picture thy warm fancy drew
Of coming life-its triumphs and its joys.
Alas, fond dreamer, all thy earthly hopes
Are buried low beneath the church-yard stone,
The crumbling mould is now thy narrow bed,
And the tall church-yard tree waves mournfully o'er thy head.
And can it be that on life's flinty way
No more thy happy voice shall cheer me on!
Yes, the kind tones are smothered in the grave;
The gentle heart hath ceased fore'er to beat;
The healthy cheek hath lost its ruddy bloom,
And the pale brow hath yet a paler hue;
The beaming eye is darkened in decay;
And the pure breath hath left its mortal frame,
As from the extinguished hearth-stone fails the living flame!
Thy parents hoped, through many a long bright year,
To walk with thee adown the vale of time,
And from thy filial love support receive;
They hoped, around the cheerful winter fire,
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