Fordham, Mary Weston
|THE SAXON LEGEND OF LANGUAGE.|
The earth was young, the world was fair,
And balmy breezes filled the air,
Nature reposed in solitude,
When God pronounced it "very good."
The snow-capped mountain reared its head,
The deep, dark forests widely spread,
O'er pebbly shores the stream did play
On glad creation's natal day.
But silence reigned, nor beast nor bird
Had from its mate a whisper heard,
E'en man, God's image from above,
Could not, to Eve, tell of his love.
Where the four rivers met there strayed
The man and wife, no whit afraid,
For the arch-fiend expelled from heaven
Had not yet found his way to Eden.
But lo! a light from 'mid the trees,
But hark! a rustling 'mongst the leaves,
Then a fair Angel from above,
Descending, sang his song of love.
Forth sprang the fierce beasts from their lair,
Bright feathered songsters fill the air,
All nature stirred to centre rang
When the celestial song began.
The Lion, monarch of the plain,
First tried to imitate the strain,
And shaking high his mane he roared,
Till beast and bird around him cowered.
The little Linnet tuned her lay,
The Lark, in turn, did welcome day,
And cooing soft, the timid Dove
Did to his mate tell of his love.
Then Eve, the synonym of grace,
Drew nearer to the solemn place,
And heard the words to music set
In tones so sweet, she ne'er forgot.
The anthems from the earth so rare,
Higher and higher filled the air,
Till Seraphs caught the inspiring strain,
And morning stars together sang.
Then laggard Adam sauntered near,
What Eve had heard he too must hear,
But ah! for aye will woman's voice
Make man to sigh or him rejoice.
Only the fishes in the deep
Did not arouse them from their sleep,
So they alas! did never hear
Of the Angel's visit to this sphere.
Nor have they ever said one word
To mate or man, or beast or bird.