Arthur's Illustrated Home Magazine
January 1879, p. 49

No. 34.

No leaves upon the bare, brown trees,
No wealth of grass and flowers,
No stir of zephyr lingers more
Amid the summer bowers.
No birds among the branches sport
With brilliant song and feather,
But dreary are the earth and sky
In drear December weather.

Draw your chair up to the fire, and put back the window-curtains, that the winter sunlight may come into the room. It will not make you too warm now. Then get Whittier 's poems, and read "Snow Bound," or lose yourself in the pages of "Evangeline" or "Lucile," while the cold wind whistles outside, and shakes the last lingering brown leaves to the ground. I wish you could read to me for an hour or two. It would be a treat highly appreciated. I rarely have any one to read poetry to me in these days, and sometimes grow hungry for it. Floy and Edna used often to give me that pleasure, before they took upon them a woman's work and more steady employments. Floy is one of the busiest girls that I know this winter, and Edna helps her mother with the housekeeping, and I hardly ever see her.

As I grow stronger, so many new duties come upon me that I have little eyesight left for reading. I love writing so well, that much of my spare time is taken up with it; and, having been idle so long, I feel as if I must work now whenever I can. Last week, however, I treated myself to some of "Owen Meredith's" miscellaneous poems, which I had never read before; and one in particular impressed itself upon me. It is called "A Vision of Virgins," and describes them going to meet the bridegroom, as narrated in my favorite Scripture parable. There were the happy faces of those who, ready, with their lamps trimmed and burning, went in with him to the feast, "and the door was shut." Then the other five – oh, what a picture was drawn of them! So vivid I could almost imagine I saw it. …

Last revised: 23 August 2010