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"Now wherefore thus, by day and night,

"In rain, in tempest, and in snow

"Thus to the dreary mountain-top

"Does this poor woman go?

"And why sits she beside the thorn
“When the blue day-light's in the sky,
"Or when the whirlwind's on the hill,
"Or frosty air is keen and still,

" And wherefore does she cry

"Oh wherefore? wherefore? tell me why "Does she repeat that doleful cry?"


I cannot tell; I wish I could;
For the true reason no one knows,
But if you'd gladly view the spot,
The spot to which she goes ;
The heap that's like an infant's


The pond-and thorn, so old and grey, Pass by her door-tis seldom shut

And if you see her in her hut,

Then to the spot away!—

I never heard of such as dare

Approach the spot when she is there.


"But wherefore to the mountain-top,

"Can this unhappy woman go,

"Whatever star is in the skies,

"Whatever wind may blow?"

Nay rack your brain-'tis all in vain,
I'll tell you every thing I know;
But to the thorn and to the pond
Which is a little step beyond,
I wish that you would go:

Perhaps when you are at the place

You something of her tale may trace.


I'll give you the best help I can

Before you up the mountain go,
Up to the dreary mountain-top,
I'll tell you all I know.

'Tis now some two and twenty years,
Since she (her name is Martha Ray)
Gave with a maiden's true good will
Her company to Stephen Hill;
And she was blithe and gay,

And she was happy, happy still

Whene'er she thought of Stephen Hill.


And they had fix'd the wedding-day,

The morning that must wed them both;

But Stephen to another maid

Had sworn another oath ;

And with this other maid to church

Unthinking Stephen went-
Poor Martha! on that woful day

A cruel, cruel fire, they say,

Into her bones was sent :

It dried her body like a cinder,

And almost turn'd her brain to tinder.


They say, full six months after this, While yet the summer leaves were green, She to the mountain-top would go,

And there was often seen.

'Tis said, a child was in her womb,.

As now to any eye was plain;

She was with child, and she was mad,

Yet often she was sober sad

From her exceeding pain.

Oh me! ten thousand times I'd rather,

That he had died, that cruel father!


Sad case for such a brain to hold

Communion with a stirring child!

Sad case, as you may think, for one
Who had a brain so wild!

Last Christmas when we talked of this,.
Old Farmer Simpson did maintain,
That in her womb the infant wrought
About its mother's heart, and brought
Her senses back again :

And when at last her time drew near,

Her looks were calm, her senses clear.


No more I know, I wish I did,
And I would tell it all to you;
For what became of this poor child
There's none that ever knew:

And if a child was born or no,

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