236 A FEW MEMORIES
but saw the beauty of the field daisy as clearly as that of the rarest orchid.
During one of my visits Lord Tennyson gave me his charming pastoral, " Robin Hood." It had been written for Mr. Irving some time before, but had never been produced. The part of Maid Marian was altered and strengthened for me, and the title changed to " The Foresters." The bard's willingness to make necessary alterations for practical purposes was in strong contrast to the tenacity with which less eminent dramatists frequently cling to their every line.
Before considering our scenery for " The Foresters" a visit was planned to the New Forest Lord Tennyson, with his son and charming daughter-in-law, my mother, and I spent two days together under the " melancholy bows" of that beautiful wood. I had never seen the bard in gayer mood than during that long picnic. We lunched upon the ground, in the checkered shade, and walked and drove from morning till night through the great forest
Passing some stray streamlet, it was delightful to see the aged poet play at ducks-and-drakes, and quote between whiles in his inimitable way: "Flow on, cold rivulet, to the sea," etc., etc.