"A miracle!" shouted de sistahs.
"A miracle nuffin!" says I;
"I see froo de mattah,—it's easy
To tell you des how it come by:
Each man fotched a bottle ob water,
An' thought, when de cask wuz complete,
By eb'ry one else bringin' whiskey,
Nobody would notice de cheat."
Dat sort o' broke up the revival —
An' raly I think it wuz time,
Wid all de head brudders convicted
Ob such a contemptible crime.
Dey isn't no good in purfeshins;
Dat's one thing I hope 'at you sees —
But, sah, it's so late I mus' leab you
To pick out what moral you please.
What shall we mourn? For the prostrate tree that sheltered the young green wood?
For the fallen cliff that fronted the sea, and guarded the fields from the flood?
For the eagle that died in the tempest, afar from its eyry's brood?
Nay, not for these shall we weep; for the silver cord must be worn,
And the golden fillet shrink back at last, and the dust to its earth return;
And tears are never for those who die with their face to the duty done:
But we mourn for the fledglings left on the waste, and the fields where the wild waves run.
From the midst of the flock he defended, the brave one has gone to his rest;
And the tears of the poor he befriended their wealth of affection attest.