Two Love Stories.


Laura Leslie has a lover ;1
She is lovely, loving he ;2
The summer birds that sing above her3
Scarcely are so blithe as she.4
Happy days ! when she awakens,5
Flowers from him are by her bed ;6
Every lonely hour she reckons7
Brings a gift in Harry’s stead.8
Every sunset, through the flowers,9
Laura and her lover stray,10
Heedless of the fleeting hours,11
Heedless of the waning day.12
Laura’s parents watch, admiring13
Love so tender, so complete ;14
While a little orphan hireling15
Plies her needle at their feet.16
What should now delay the marriage ?17
Every comfort they prepare ;18
House and gardens, horses, carriage,19
Fall to Laura Leslie’s share.20
Soon, upon a summer morning,21
Mary stands by Laura’s side,22
Little orphan hands adorning23
Harry’s young and happy bride.24


Orphan Mary has a lover ;25
Miles away from her is he ;26
The wintry clouds that hang above her27
Scarcely are so sad as she.28
Every morning when she wakens,29
Prays she for her absent John ;30
On a knotted stick she reckons31
Every lonely day that’s gone.32
Twice a year he leaves his labour,33
Walks across the country wide,34
And waits for Mary in an arbour,35
By the Leslies’ garden-side.36
First, when she had seen him weary,37
Worn and wasted by the heat,38
Simple-hearted orphan Mary39
Ask’d him in to take a seat.40
Twenty little minutes, stolen41
From her working, fled away ;42
Then she rose, with eyelids swollen ;43
Laura rang ; she must not stay.44
Mary gave one kiss at parting,45
Turn’d, and lo, across the hall,46
Angry looks at her were darting ;47
Angry eyes had seen it all.48
Laura’s parents watch’d, regretting49
Time so shamefully misspent :50
What example she’ was setting51
To the whole establishment !52
Mary blushed and stood convicted ;53
Often had she heard it said54
Followers were interdicted ;55
Wherefore had she disobey’d ?56
What though John was true and loving ?57
What though he was all to her ?58
In the sphere where she was moving59
He was but “ a follower.”60
Twice a-year, now, orphan Mary61
Waits till every servant sleeps ;62
Then, with footsteps slow and wary,63
To the lonely arbour creeps.64
There, or nowhere, she must meet him ;65
Ere the morning, he must go ;66
There, unseen, her kiss may greet him ;67
There, unchid, her tears may flow. —68
Thus, an angry witness dreading,69
Mary thinks her love her shame :70
Should it never end in wedding,71
Who shall bear the bitter blame ?72