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[203] Went out, and human sounds grew still,
     And all the phantom-peopled dark
Closed round her hearth-fire's dying spark.

And summer days were sad and long,
     And sad the uncompanioned eves,
And sadder sunset-tinted leaves,

And Indian Summer's airs of balm;
     She scarcely felt the soft caress,
The beauty died of loneliness!

The school-boys jeered her as they passed,
     And, when she sought the house of prayer,
Her mother's curse pursued her there.

And still o'er many a neighboring door
     She saw the horseshoe's curvied charm,
To guard against her mother's harm:

That mother, poor and sick and lame,
     Who daily, by the old arm-chair,
Folded her withered hands in prayer;—

Who turned, in Salem's dreary jail,
     Her worn old Bible o'er and o'er,
When her dim eyes could read no more!

Sore tried and pained, the poor girl kept
     Her faith, and trusted that her way,
So dark, would somewhere meet the day.

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Salem (Massachusetts, United States) (1)

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