Seite:Marsh Wolfe of the knoll.djvu/269

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273

AXEL.

Right greedily the Muscovites
What joy to strike, and see them fall !
Oh, that King Charles had witnessed all !
They fell like grain before the knife !
I half seemed wounded in the strife. —
The letter I to Stockholm bear,
My honor's pledged to take it there.
Dear are the moments ! Up ! to horse !" —
Such, wild with fever, his discourse ;
And then the hero deathly pale
Back on his quiet pillow fell.

Then death contended long with life
Over the youth in doubtful strife.
Life conquered ; slow the peril passed.
And Axel now could view, at last,
With conscious eye, though weak and dim,
The angel that still watched by him, —
Not one of those idyllic maids,
Who sighing walk in verdant shades,