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Mixed with the common crew, half-shared a boat,
Arid ne'er was happy saving when afloat.

A change came o'er his life since that dread hour
When harsh experience showed the tempest's power.
No more he sought his comrades on the shore,
Nor scorned the home that had been dull before.
When Jane walked up at evenings there was he,
Kind host, to hand her countless cups of tea,
To press the muffin while it yet was warm,
And all the rural dainties of the farm;
Nor this alone, but books he tried to read;
If dark the sense Jane helped him at his need.
A slate he bought, and toiled with many a fret,
Through sums, and weights, and measures dry and
The maid still aided when a puzzler came,
And joy at her assistance drowned the shame.
Once said his mother, "What a girl is Jane!
How good her heart! Alas, that she's so plain!"
John oped his eyes as if he scarcely heard
Or strove to attain the meaning of the word.
"Plain?" he exclaimed; "I know not what you
A smile like hers no mortal man has seen."
"Have you e'er told her so?" the mother said.
"What right have I, stained name and empty head,
To speak to such a scholar as Miss Jane?"
The son replied. "Indeed, I'm not so vain."

That night Jane sought the farm when school was
The mother archly smiled, and blushed the son.
When first they saw her at the Whitefield stile,
Said Widow Snow, "Just tell her of her smile."
But silent sat the youth the evening through,
And never hours before so swiftly flew.
When Jane rose up to take her homeward way,
"John," said the mother, "has a word to say;
He'll see you through the yard and past the stile,
He wants to tell you, Jane, about your smile."
No smile had Jane; so well her face she knew,
How many its defects, its charms how few,
She felt offence; her voice grew sharp and clear:
"I did not fancy John was so severe."
Quickly she went; abashed the young man stood,
And couldn't have o'erta'en her if he would.

A week passed on; John Snow was nowhere found,
They searched the village, tried each nook of ground.
A herd had seen him take the upland track,
With stick in hand and bundle on his back;
But none had heard him tell his journey's end,
Nor on what day his coming to attend.
Poor Widow Snow was all o'ercome with grief,
But Jane came up once more and brought relief;
Whispered her hopes that he would soon return:
"The post will bring a lettercease to mourn;
Perhaps our curate knowsI'll go inquire
Perhaps he told his plans to Doctor Dire.
I'll ask him, too; rest happy." So she went,
And left the widow wretched but content.

Our curate and the doctorgenerous twain
Walked up to aid the comfortings of Jane.
"An idle freak," our mild-eyed curate cried;
"He staid away three days last Whitsuntide."
"He's a changed man since then," said Widow
"And hates the Whitsun ales and all their show."
"I thinkHeaven bless him!" thus the leech began,
"He's caught at last some little spark of man.
No molly-coddle now with bulls and cows,
And such live lumber pressing down his bows,
But—"here his eyes were mentioned" he's now
An A. B. seaman in a ship of war;
Some fighting dragon like the Bossentore.
God save the Queen! if that would get him free"
He cracked his hand—"he 'd not get that from
Small comfort this; but, when some days went by,
A broken slate the widow chanced to spy,
And on the fragment this short line appears,
"Tell Jane she's not to marry for three years."
Harsh pangs on this through Jane a minute passed,
"The man!" she said, "he mocks me to the last!"
But, in long nights of talk with Widow Snow,
And tears that did not fail at times to flow,
She learned what thoughts his bashfulness confin'd,
And strange, sweet fancies filled her wondering mind;
Content and pleasure gave each action grace,
And fixed their own calm beauty in her face.
So sunshine, when it warms neglected ground,
Calls flower-seeds forth and scatters perfume round.

One wintry night, when scarce two years were gone,
The two sad mourners sat and talked of John.
The glimmering fire sent forth a cheery light,
Andall without a causetheir hopes grew bright.
"I feel as if some happiness were near,"
The widow said, and wiped th' unconscious tear.
Jane smiled to hear.—But sudden, from the sea,
A gun was heard. "What can the signal be?"
They looked across the baybut nothing saw.
A flash again! far offand then, with awe,
They watched the coming sound, they heard its
And lights grew frequent on the startled shore.
A third report came booming o'er the tide:
"They want a boat," the saddened mother sighed;
"If John were here! " dear memories awoke,
One thought possessing both though neither spoke.

A heavy footstep sounded at the door,
The handle turned, and who stood on the floor?
Toil-worn he seemed, like common sailor drest,
Blue jacket, shining hat, and hairy vest;
Across his neck two wooden boxes hung,
These at his feet with heavy sound he flung.
"You do not know me, mother?—"Yes, the tone
Of the loved voice revealed him all her own;
And in his arms she lay!—but still his eye
Was fixed on Jane who sat in silence by.
She helped the widow on a chair to place,
And both sat gazing in the stranger's face.
He went to Jane, he took her willing hand,
"For you," he said, "my life's great change I
Crossed the wide seasa man before the mast
And, armed and eager, to the gold world past.
There week by week I added to my store,
Heaped grains on grains till I required no more,
And here I'm landed on my native shore."
Then with a kick he showed the boxes' weight
"Five hundred ounces is my golden freight,
Enough," he cried, "to crown my best design,
Oh, Jane! oh, mother! what a bliss is mine!"

What wonders quickly on the farm we see:
Three hundred pounds turned leasehold into fee
Some wise repairs made every fence complete;
The cottage walls grew clean, the chambers neat.
And when our doctor gave the bride away
Rough were his words that hailed the wedding-day