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“The fool has signed his warrant; but how
And when shall the deed be wrought?
Speak, Ruth! why, what the devil is there,
To fix thy gaze in that empty air?—
Speak, Ruth! by my soul, if I thought that tear,
Which shames thyself and our purpose here,
Were shed for that cursed and pale-faced dog,
Whose green scalp hangs from the belt of Mogg,
And whose beastly soul is in Satan's keeping,—
This—this!” —he dashes his hand upon
The rattling stock of his loaded gun,—
“Should send thee with him to do thy weeping!”
‘Father!’ the eye of Boniton
Sinks at that low, sepulchral tone,
Hollow and deep, as it were spoken
By the unmoving tongue of death,—
Or from some statue's lips had broken,—
A sound without a breath!
“Father!—my life I value less
Than yonder fool his gaudy dress;
And how it ends it matters not,
By heart-break or by rifle-shot;
But spare awhile the scoff and threat,—
Our business is not finished yet.”
“True, true, my girl,—I only meant
To draw up again the bow unbent.
Harm thee, my Ruth! I only sought
To frighten off thy gloomy thought;
Come,—let's be friends!” He seeks to clasp
His daughter's cold, damp hand in his.
Ruth startles from her father's grasp,
As if each nerve and muscle felt,
Instinctively, the touch of guilt,
Through all their subtle sympathies.
He points her to the sleeping Mogg:
“What shall be done with yonder dog? Scamman is dead, and revenge is thine,—
The deed is signed and the land is mine;
And this drunken fool is of use no more,
Save as thy hopeful bridegroom, and sooth,
Twere Christian mercy to finish him, Ruth,
Now, while he lies like a beast on our floor,—
If not for thine, at least for his sake,
Rather than let the poor dog awake
To drain my flask, and claim as his bride
Such a forest devil to run by his side,—
Such a Wetuomanit1 as thou wouldst make!
He laughs at his jest. Hush—what isthere?—
The sleeping Indian is striving to rise,
1 Wuttamuttata,—a house god, or demon. They—the Indians—have given me the names of thirty-seven gods which I have, all which in their solemne Worships they invocate! R. Williams's Briefe Observations of the customs, manners, Worships, etc., of the natives, in Peace and Warre, in life and death: on all which is added Spiritual Observations, General and Particular, of Chiefe and Special use—upon all occasions—to all the English inhabiting these parts; yet pleasant and Profitable to the view of all Mene: p. 110, c. 21.
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