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courage well nigh spent, I thought of the going mad ? Closer and closer came the famous ghost of Twll Dafydd y Girreg. stealthy tread, and I felt the hot breath of Tradition has it that the apparition of some mystic madman upon my neck. A Dafydd y MỸg, who broke his neck over pair of gleaming eyes were the first object the quarry, wanders about the cave at I saw, as I turned round with a gasp. In early dawn, about three o'clock, the hour doing so my hand brushed against the when his body was found. As I listened ground where the matchbox lay. I opened to the half chime of the church clock, I it with trembling fingers, and struck a thought of the ghost. At that age my match against its side. It was damp. I nerves were very slack, for it never took took out another lucifer, and struck it much to frighten me. Forthwith mystic, against my teeth. My panting breath dread shadows seemed to grow out of the almost extinguished the light. For a darkness. I felt the folly of my childish moment the small yellow flame flickered. fears; but as each minute tottered by my Then it burst into a bright light, and I saw grim fancies grew. The most hideous the ghost of Twll Dafydd y Garreg,-it illusions held my mind, and my misery was was your mangy, dirty, ugly lurcher." not mellowed by the melancholy music of “Ha," laughed the Poacher,-it was a the moaning blasts under which the nasty laugh, for punishment had killed his clustered branches of the Coed groaned sense of humour,-"you should have kept and sighed. As I lay on the ground, the secret. Whisk would never have split within three feet of an invisible yawning on you, for none can keep his counsel as gulf, I caught a glimpse of the first streaks my dog can.” of dawn. At the same moment, just as the “What do you think ?" jeered Phil. three quarter chime sounded across the “How could the poor devil keep his own valley, an awful fright seized me, for I counsel with the fear that he had on him became conscious of the presence of an when we saw him come down the rock in unseen companion. All over me crept a the morning ?” chilling, deadly feeling; my nerves were “I suppose he did look bad,” admitted strung to their highest tension, as I heard the Poacher. a stealthy tread behind me. I kept my “Bad d’ye call it? He looked just as eyes on the horizon whence the darkness he did on Saturday, when his missus was rising, afraid to turn round. The caught him playing at pitch and toss.” footsteps crept nearer and nearer, and I heard a panting breath. Great God, was I
T WALKED on the shingly beach,
Was a mighty muffled din ;
With a wavy shimmering sheen;
As I gazed on the noon-day scene.
On the ocean's feathery spray,
For what company were they !
And ocean singeth a requiem stave
For the wreck of systems old.
Tell me, ye mighty wise !
And close your too-curious eyes.
And vague chaotic thought
Flitted across my mind,
But left its shadow behind.
Where once teemed life untold ;
I plucked a floweret sweet,
Of tender and modest hue,
The stranger who nothing knew ;
For it spoke of the Lord of all.
Where the pebbles rise and fall,
With the rattle of ceaseless strife,
A STORY ILLUSTRATIVE OF WELSH THOUGHT FIFTY YEARS AGO.
BY THE REv. E. CYNFFIG DAVIES, M.A., MENAI BRIDGE.
“when we follow in the footsteps of our
sympathy; for he was fond of the early THERE was no home in Baileyhill rising we all approve.
At that point Miss Riley, with a fine and where his good qualities were better perception of the fitness of things, gave a understood, than at the Congregational turn to the serious bent of their discussion
One evening, in accordance with by a remark touched with a tinge of mirth, — the usual tenor of their varied discussions, “Then, father, we may designate ourtheir conversation turned upon the ad- selves in this house as a trio of early risers, vantage of early religious convictions. which is not always or unexceptionally Mr. Riley observed,
true of us;" and, turning to Gabriel, she “ Many, these days, object to the added,—“ early rising, also, we know to be attention paid to the religious profession the order of the day with you, when our of children. I esteem it a very high schoolroom was being reared up.” privilege that I was received into church
But May Riley's playful observation, fellowship when I was about thirteen being intended to elicit Gabriel's religious years old. Of course I had been brought experience on the subject, had its effect; up in the church from infancy. I believe and his reply came with a quiet, and yet my prayers and devotions were as earnest
spontaneous intensity that caused a thrill at thirteen as at any subsequent period of of feeling in the minds of the other three,
Our playing at prayer and “I live under a continual obligation to preaching in childhood may have been as thank Jesus that the God of Samuel called acceptable in the sight of our Heavenly me early to his service.” Father as our grandest religious efforts of To create a further diversion in the solemn worship before the public.”
groove to which their conversation had “If so, father,” said Mrs. Riley,“we should run, Miss Riley pointed out that their trio encourage children's prayer meetings.” of early risers was framing into a quartet,
I do not go so far as that, but what I and that they had better take a Psalm suggest is that there was in our child tune to her accompaniment on the piano. worship an element of spontaneous ex They sang a favourite hymn with much pression of love to God that must have taste and pathos; and ere Gabriel left, Mr. been pleasing in His sight.”
Riley read a portion of the Psalms and "I quite agree with you,” said Gabriel, prayed. “that children's minds are capable of The word quartet conveyed to Gabriel a guileless religious earnestness."
significant meaning which May had not “ Youthful piety," continued Mr. Riley, intended when causing a change of current "in my estimation is much like early rising in the strain of solemnity attending their of a day when you have a long journey to discussion on that particular evening. His make before its close; and it gives me a liking for May had been growing imspecies of pure satisfaction to have reason
perceptibly into a strong attachment and to think that the other members of my refined admiration, so that, during the family,--that is, my wife and daughter, — following days, the remembrance of their were led to consecrate themselves to the quartet and the evening prayer of the good love and the service of our Lord Jesus at pastor only served to chrystalize and give the same early hour of life.”
form to the profound respect and pure “We cannot go wrong," said Gabriel, pleasure he had felt centring in the
manse. When he became conscious what as long as the visible remains undissolved. it all meant, a sense of painful recoil seized Dear uncle, remember our work in your his mind,—à recoil from the possibility of prayers at the family altar and in thechurch.” asking Miss Riley to take for herself the It is not difficult to imagine the amount changed name of an ex-convict. Still of self-control required of Gabriel to listen more was the attachment intensified when, imperturbably to the reading of this letter. calling one day at the manse, he discovered But after setting the missive back in her that John Venn, the missionary in South father's letter-box, according to a species of Africa, who went to his field of labour by unconscious
unconscious tact she assumed å lively the ship in which Gabriel was taken to bantering tone and said, — exile, was cousin to May. A letter had Realiy, Mr. John, your nation ought to arrived from the missionary detailing an be excommunicated for its devotion to encouraging account of the mission work angels, one of you being a Michael and in Africa, and referring to the young another a Gabriel
. To say the least, this convict he met on board in going out to is more than Puritan, it is angelic.”
The concluding part of the Gabriel then knew only too well who letter was penned as follows
was his angel, but dared not say; and he You may have read of a Welsh feared he could never give his thought preacher of much promise who was sent to expression of that fact. How fortunate it penal servitude to Van Dieman's Land for a seemed that Mr. Venn had forgotten the period of twelve years for causing the full name, for if it were otherwise his death of a policeman in a riot in one of the position would be rendered more difficult coal districts of Glamorganshire. I took than it really was. down his name in a pocket book, which I At that moment Mr. Riley entered the lost on my way from the Cape to the house, having been making pastoral visits, interior; but his surname remains indelible which greatly interested and pleased him; in my memory. You will be able to find the return from a fruitful visit being, no out upon enquiry his full name, which, I doubt, one of the bright and cheering think, is Michael Yoreth. There can be no experiences of a pastor's life. manner of doubt that he is the victim of a Have you shown Mr. John your cousin's most wrongful miscarriage of justice.. I letter, May?" had frequent opportunities of holding “Yes, father, and I told him that the converse with him on deck; and I do not dwellers of the mountains of Wales, climbremember meeting a young man of such ing nearer the sky than we do, are becoming individuality in his vivid conviction of angelic with their Michaels and Gabriels. Christian truth, in quiet unassuming " It requires more than the mere name fortitude under wrong, and in the gift of of a blissful being,” said Mr. Riley, “ to be mingling puritan severity of thought with able to endure such wrong with fortitude kindly tolerance toward all who love the and resignation, and without sometimes Lord Jesus. His originality in the con- losing faith in the moral rectitude of the ception and the expression of his ideas universe.” undoubtedly arose in part from his en The thoughts of Gabriel then ran to the vironment, training, and nationality, but; reading of “ Butler's Analogy” in the after making all due deductions, there settlement, and how he had fortified his remains too much of the real thing for him faith by its contents. ever to be lost in the crowd. If
should • You are acquainted I presume, Mr. at any time make a trip to Van Dieman's John, with many of the circumstances of Land, I should feel that you conferred a the event to which my nephew refers.” favour upon me by enquiring for him, and “I am, Mr. Riley, tor I was in the neighdoing something to help him to continue to bourhood at the time, and took the keenest raise himself above his circumstances. cognizance of the issues of the affair, and I Some of the things he told me, and the most decidedly form the same conclusion way in which they were told, took a hold as Mr. Venn, that it is an instance of upon me which will never loosen its grasp extreme miscarriage of justice.”
“The event,” said May, in the spirit of all else being satisfactory, in acceding to sunny hopefulness, “will right itself sooner his wishes?” asked Gabriel. or later. A kindly Providence will surely That puts our principles to the test intervene, and even now in the sight of pretty sharply; nevertheless I say yes, on clear minded persons no stigma can be the condition already specified, viz., that really fastened upon the poor man's true you are convinced that the said ex-convict character. I am so glad my cousin, in real is innocent of the crime for which he was missionary spirit, showed his sympathy exiled, other considerations being agreeable with that Michael. What a pleasure it to the supposed partnership.' must give one to help any human being so Nevertheless, Mr. Riley, it places a situated !”
man at a fearful disadvantage in the race of “You are performing the office,” thought life to be stigmatised with the name convict.” . Gabriel within himself, “but you do not Possibly you are not aware," replied now receive your full reward of pleasure, the pastor,““ that there are some ex-convicts for you do it unawares.”
in our generous climate who have risen to " What you say, my child, is undoubtedly positions of wide influence and usefulness ; correct. I visited a case just now, which and there are some who were transported forms an object lesson in the principle you on clearly false issues. The undeniable enunciate concerning the beneficent over instances I have seen of the perversion of ruling providence of our Father. A young penal justice, form, in my estimation, an clerk in the old country was accused of insurmountable argument against capital theft, and a shameful breach of trust. He punishment." had no means of rehutting the circum “The magnanimity of mind which your stantial evidence likely to be adduced argument evinces must be much harder to against him, and being ashamed of facing practise than to expound and profess. Are a tribunal, he consequently fled from his you not sometimes tempted to lose faith in home and country and came to the gold men, when you witness the seamy side of diggings. Then as the result of a more society such as is found in proximity to arduous mode of life here, he is now, I fear, a penal settlement ?” at the door of death. But the threatening "No, no; it would ill become my calling cloud overhanging him is dispersed ; a to fail to repose trust in man, especially letter came to him this morning from a when he is tried, tempted, and repentant. friend who knew his whereabouts, inform We came to Baileyhill ten years ago, ing him that the question of the theft was having quitted the mother country for the cleared; the lost bond and the money were sake of my health, which is now as good found where they had been thoughtlessly
After our arrival, the first year placed by the head of the firm. The poor was spent in founding a new cause here; man may rally as he realizes the meaning and being the first minister to enter the of the message; yet in losing his home he field in what was then a small village, I came here to find his Saviour,-better that had many advantages to make a good than much gold !”
start. By the second year I had gathered "Is it Bob Jackson, father? Mother around me some of the best men in the and I called to see him yesterday.”
district,—men of sterling good character, “Yes, May, it is he; but his true sur most of whom you know yourself; and name is Jones. I intend to write to his since then I have often thanked the infriends at Cardiff after calling to see him visible hand that took mine into its gentle later on this evening."
grasp to lead me to this important post. “You have given utterance to kindly During that time I have been guided by sentiments as to the sad lot of those who superhuman light to read hearts and to fall under the ban of society, through false select the best Christian workers, hardly evidence or hasty conclusions; but suppose ever reposing trust in the wrong place.” an ex-convict expressed a desire to become my partner in the building trade or in
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