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He looked up into that sweet earnest face,

But sternly, mournfully: not yet the band Was loosen'd from his soul; its inmost place

Not yet unveil'd by love's o'ermastering hand. 66 Speak low!" he cried, and pointed where on high The white Alps glitter'd thro' the solemn sky:

"We must speak low amidst our ancient hills And their free torrents; for the days are come When tyranny lies couch'd by forest-rills,

And meets the shepherd in his mountain-home. Go, pour the wine of our own grapes in fear, Keep silence by the hearth! its foes are near.

"The envy of the oppressor's eye hath been

Upon my heritage. I sit to-night Under my household tree, if not serene,

Yet with the faces best-belov'd in sight : To-morrow eve may find me chain'd, and theeHow can I bear the boy's young smiles to see?"

The bright blood left that youthful mother's cheek; Back on the linden-stem she lean'd her form, And her lip trembled, as it strove to speak,

Like a frail harp-string, shaken by the storm. 'Twas but a moment, and the faintness pass'd, And the free Alpine spirit woke at last.

And she, that ever thro' her home had mov'd With the meek thoughtfulness and quiet smile

Of woman, calmly loving and belov'd, —

And timid in her happiness the while,
Stood brightly forth, and stedfastly, that hour,
Her clear glance kindling into sudden power.

Ay, pale she stood, but with an eye of light,
And took her fair child to her holy breast,
And lifted her soft voice, that gather'd might
As it found language:-"Are we thus oppress'd?
Then must we rise upon our mountain-sod,
And man must arm, and woman call on God!

"I know what thou wouldst do,—and be it done!
Thy soul is darken'd with its fears for me.
Trust me to Heaven, my husband!—this, thy son,
The babe whom I have born thee, must be free!
And the sweet memory of our pleasant hearth
May well give strength-if aught be strong on earth.

"Thou hast been brooding o'er the silent dread Of my desponding tears; now lift once more, My hunter of the hills! thy stately head,

And let thine eagle glance my joy restore! I can bear all, but seeing thee subdued,— Take to thee back thine own undaunted mood.

"Go forth beside the waters, and along

The chamois-paths, and thro' the forests go; And tell, in burning words, thy tale of wrong

To the brave hearts that midst the hamlets glow. God shall be with thee, my belov'd!--Away! Bless but thy child, and leave me,--I can pray !"

He sprang up like a warrior-youth awaking

To clarion-sounds upon the ringing air; He caught her to his breast, while proud tears breaking From his dark eyes, fell o'er her braided hair,— And "Worthy art thou," was his joyous cry, "That man for thee should gird himself to die.

"My bride, my wife, the mother of my child!

Now shall thy name be armour to my heart; And this our land, by chains no more defiled,

Be taught of thee to choose the better part! I go thy spirit on my words shall dwell,

Thy gentle voice shall stir the Alps-Farewell!"

And thus they parted, by the quiet lake,

In the clear starlight: he, the strength to rouse

Of the free hills; she, thoughtful for his sake,

To rock her child beneath the whispering boughs
Singing its blue, half-curtain'd eyes to sleep,
With a low hymn, amidst the stillness deep.

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