Page:Letters of Life.djvu/59

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47
EARLY YEARS.

Yet if there ever was any such repining, it was too transient to have marked the slightest trace on memory.

What particularly riveted my attention in that fair parlor was an ancient clock, whose tall, ebony case, was covered with gilded figures, of strikingly varied and fanciful character. These, like the storied tiles on the mantelpiece in the drawing-room, continually exercised my wonder and admiration. There I gazed with folded hands, to touch being forbidden, regarding the mystic movements of the pendulum seen through its orb of glass, and counting the "tick, tick" until, perchance, the stroke of its exceedingly clear musical bell caused a startled delight.


But the lov'd friend who sate
Near in her elbow-chair,
Teaching with patient care
Life's young beginner, on that dial-plate
To count the winged minutes, fleet and fair,
And mark each hour with deeds of love,
Lo! she hath broke her league with time, and found the rest above.


The rich benefits derived from friendship between infant inexperience and saintly wisdom, are incalculable. The tutelary influences of holy age upon the forming mind, can be fully computed only by those who stand with folded wings before the throne.