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Ah yes, my friend, I am nothing now

But a battered old Seventy-Four-
No Youth at the helm, and Hope at the prow,

As once in the days of yore;-
In the gallant old days, now gone, now dead,

When I was so young, strong, free,
With my sails all spread and my flag at my head

Ready to brave any sea,
Any storm, any danger, if only it led

To Glory and Victory.

Ah, those were the glorious days of old

That I never again shall know !-
Dear days, that were once so glad and bold

In the young, brave long ago,–
When the winds were my playmates, the sea my bride,
And over the billows in joy and pride

Unfearing I used to ride ;-
Dear days, that are now so dead and cold,
For which Time's funeral bells have tolled

Their dirges of sorrow and woe.
I am nothing now but a shattered old hulk

With not even a sail or mast,
Laid up in the dock to rot and to sulk,

And to brag of the days that are past.
There is only one gun, an old cracked one,

That is left me here on my deck,
From which hot shot in the days that are not

I fired from this shattered old wreck.
Despoiled and bereft, and with nothing left,

I am kept here, who knows why,
Save to tell the old tales till my memory fails

Of the glorious days gone by, -
Of the battles I fought, of the din of war,
Of the times of peace, of the voyages far

Into many a sea and clime
That I made in the good, old, well-rigged time,

When life was without a care,
And I, in my strength and prime.

Now, far away to the tropic isles,
Where the love-birds of Paradise flash through the air,
And the year's long summer sleeps lingering there,

And the deep blue heaven smiles,—
Now, to the North where the icebergs high
Topple all flashing against the sky,
Or into the seas at their bases lashing,
Splitting, fall with a sudden crashing,

And the white gulls startled fly.

Ah then, on the world how gladly I went,

With a craving of wild unrest;
No doubt, no question my spirit oppressed,

But on, with my sails all trimmed and bent,
Joyous I sailed, and this wretched old hull
Was ready to lie in the tropic's lull,

When the winds were all asleep,
Or the tempest and storm unfearing to breast

When they roused their revel to keep.
You may laugh if you choose, and scorn and abuse

Those good old sailing days-
You may boast of your steam and your wheels and your screws,

And all your new-fangled ways;
But for beauty and grace you must take second place,

However your use you praise.
Ah yes! for a braver and gallanter sight

On the ocean you never will find
Than an old three-master, its canvas white

All rounded out to the wind,-
Not hammering, panting along the sea

With a ceaseless splashing and noise,
But almost flying, bending, careening,
Now up erect, now sideways leaning,

With an ever-shifting poise.
Ab, that was sailing ! ah, that was living!

How we went in those days! how we went !
The winds from heaven their impulse giving,

And we joying in what they sent!
How we played with the storm and laughed with the tempest,

As under their pressure we bent,
The wild seas leaping, and rushing, and sweeping

Over our decks and sides;
Our sharp prow lifting high up, and cleaving
The dark blue billows before it heaving,

As over them bravely it rides;
Or downward stooping and into them swooping,

As greenly they yawned beneath,
Into their deep black caverns scooping,

With a foam-bone in its teeth,-
While above, at the mast-head flying free,

And playing with the wind,
Streamed the good old flag, and after us sweeping

Came the following gulls, their orbed wings dipping
In the foam-fringed edge of the billows upleaping

In the rustling wake behind.

How we used to speed o'er the summer seas

With hearts so happy and light,-
Our full sails strained by the steady breeze,

And scarcely a cloud in sight !
All the long fresh day how we sped away,

With never a dream of care-
All the moonlight night, so clear and bright,

With its few large stars and rare !
Singing and laughing, and jesting and chaffing,

Not knowing how happy we were !
Ah! then we lived, we lived, my boy!
Life was not then a remembered joy;
But we lived in the Present, and wide-eyed Hope
Had the key of the Future, and promised to ope

New Joys in the Life before.

And we panted for more and more, Never content, though we wildly spent

Of the Present's abundant store,
Scarcely knowing how happy Life was, as it went,

Till the voyage of Youth was o'er;-
For 'tis only at last, looking back at the Past

And its dear sweet long-ago,
With its careless joys, and its brief annoys,

How happy we were we know !

Now !—ah now !—but 'tis useless to sigh
For the dear old days gone utterly by,–
The glad old time of my strength and prime,

That only in dreams I see, -
As afar they sleep in the distance deep

Of my fading memory.
Here all alone, life's voyages done,
Its banners and sails and masts cut down,
Everything but the old timbers gone,

Useless and hopeless I lie
In the narrow dead dock of Age, -
And silently wait till the fiat of Fate

Turn over Life's last sad page,
Open wide with its key this prison gate

And set me free from this cage ;
And I hear the stern cry sounding low but clear-
Break up the old hulk, throw its fragments away!
'Twas a good old ship, perhaps, as you say,
But 'tis useless now, it has had its day,

It only encumbers us here !

But even here, when the guns on the shore
Peal out, I can feel the old battle's roar
Sounding again, that I never more,

While life remains, shall forget,
When out on the sea the enemy

In my fighting trim I met !
Ah! my old hulk, each shotted gun
Then pealed in a thundering unison,

And I seem to hear them yet,
Flashing and crashing, the balls come dashing

On their savage errand of death

Through sails, yard, mast, coming thundering past

And sweeping the decks beneath.
Ah ! the wild shrill cries, and the agonies
Of the wounded—the decks all red
With the blood of the dying and dead !
The living all firing and loading-
The guns in flashes exploding-
And the fierce wild courage and cry
As the balls told sternly their terrible tale,
Sweeping the decks with their iron hail,
Tearing through masts and yard and sail,
As they crashed relentlessly by;
Till after what seemed like months had passed,
Though they were but moments—at last—at last
The enemy's flag was struck from the mast,

To our wild cry-Victory!

Ah ! my friend, what am I, that am bragging so
Of the time that is dead and gone?
What am I now—from stern to prow,
But a wretched old hulk, razeed, cut down,
With not even one old cracked gun?
That never again will feel the strain
Of the wind in my swelling sails,-
Never freely careening, and swinging, and leaning,
Speed over the bounding main.

Never !—ah, never again !

Even now while I tell these old-world tales,
Though you listen with deference due
To age, old age,—there's a hidden smile
Lurks under that deference all the while,

And a smile of pity too.
Still, while I am telling, my heart keeps swelling

With thoughts of the days I knew,
Till I almost seem to feel those gales
Blowing again in my swelling sails,

As once they used to do.

But pardon !-pardon !-I'll say no more;
I'm a poor old hulk, and the days of yore,
With all their gladness and reckless madness,

For me are utterly o'er !
And perhaps even you, if you're honest and true,
Will confess that this prattle of voyage and battle

Is simply a tedious bore,
Or at best must seem like the idle dream

Of a bragging old “Seventy-Four.”

W. W. STORY. THE PRETENDER AT BAR-LE-DUC.

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“ THE Pretender Charles Ed- historical character. And about ward resided here three years in a his doings at Bar thus far very house which is still pointed out.” little has been made known. So you may read in “Murray,” With the help of M. Konarski's under the head of “Bar-le-Duc.” notes, of the local and other arThe information is, as it happens, chives, freely placed at my disposal not altogether accurate. For, in the (including those of the Foreign first place, the “Pretender” who Office on the Quay d'Orsay), I “resided” at Bar was not “Charles have managed to gather together Edward” at all. In the second, so sufficient historical crumbs to little is “the house still pointed make up a fairly substantial loaf out” that, on my first visit to Bar, —all the information on the subin August 1890, I could actually ject, I suppose, that is to be got. not find a soul to give me even And, at any rate as a secondary the vaguest information as to side-chapter to our national history its whereabouts. “Cela doit être at an important epoch, perhaps the dans la Haute VilleCela doit account which, within the limits of être dans la Basse VilleEh bien, a magazine article, I shall be able moi je n'en sais rien.” Why should to give, may prove of passing they know about the Pretender? interest to more besides those There were no thanks, surely, due staunch surviving Jacobites who to him. While in the town, he still from time to time “play at had given himself intolerable airs, treason" in out-of-the-way places. had put the town to no end of ex- What sent the Pretender to Bar pense and all manner of trouble, every schoolboy knows. We had and in the end had slunk away fought with France and were, in without so much as a word of 1713, about to conclude peace. thanks or of farewell, leaving a Our Court had, as a Stuart MS. heavy score of debts to be paid- in Paris puts it, showed itself exand, up in a neat cottage on the tremely chatouilleuse et suscepbrow of the picturesque hill, for tible” with respect to the countewhich some one else had to

pay

the nance given to James. Louis rent, one pretty little Barisienne XIV., we were aware, had exdisconsolate, betrayed, disgraced. pressed his desire to render to the There was, in fact, but one man Pretender's family "de plus grands belonging to the town who had et plus heureux services” than he taken the trouble to trace the had yet been able to give. And house from the description given in so, very naturally, before engaging the local archives, M. Vladimir to suspend hostilities, we insisted Konarski-and he was away on that James should be turned out his holiday. There was nothing of France. Once we were about then, for me to do but to go home it, we might as well have asked a with an empty note-book, quoad little more, and pressed for his reBar, and return in 1891 to resume moval to a farther distance. The my inquiry.

Hanoverian Court was anxious to Even to us Englishmen the first see him in papistical Italy—best of Pretender is not a particularly all, at Rome. That would, M. de attractive personage.

But he is a Robethon avows, do for him en

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