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The Poetical Works of George MacDonald

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SCENE IX.--LILIA preparing to go out. LILY.

Don't go to-night again.


  Why, child, your father

Will soon be home; and then you will not miss me.

Oh, but I shall though! and he looks so sad When you're not here!


He cannot look much sadder

Than when I am. I am sure 'tis a relief To find his child alone when he returns.

Will you go, mother? Then I'll go and cry Till father comes. He'll take me on his knee, And tell such lovely tales: you never do-- Nor sing me songs made all for my own self. He does not kiss me half so many times As you do, mother; but he loves me more. Do you love father, too? I love him so!

There's such a pretty book! Sit on the stool, And look at the pictures till your father comes.


(putting the book down, and going to the window). I wish he would come home. I wish he would.


Oh, there he is!

[Running up to him.]

Oh, now I am so happy!


I had not time to watch before you came.

(taking her in his arms). I am very glad to have my little girl; I walked quite fast to come to her again.

I do, do love you. Shall I tell you something? Think I should like to tell you. Tis a dream That I went into, somewhere in last night. I was alone--quite;--you were not with me, So I must tell you. 'Twas a garden, like That one you took me to, long, long ago, When the sun was so hot. It was not winter, But some of the poor leaves were growing tired With hanging there so long. And some of them Gave it up quite, and so dropped down and lay Quiet on the ground. And I was watching them. I saw one falling--down, down--tumbling down-- Just at the earth--when suddenly it spread Great wings and flew.--It was a butterfly, So beautiful with wings, black, red, and white--

[Laughing heartily.]

I thought it was a crackly, withered leaf. Away it flew! I don't know where it went. And so I thought, I have a story now To tell dear father when he comes to Lily.

Thank you, my child; a very pretty dream. But I am tired--will you go find another-- Another dream somewhere in sleep for me?

O yes, I will.--Perhaps I cannot find one.

[He lays her down to sleep; then sits musing.]

What shall I do to give it life again? To make it spread its wings before it fall, And lie among the dead things of the earth?

I cannot go to sleep. Please, father, sing The song about the little thirsty lily.

[JULIAN sings.]

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