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Full text of "Reveries of a bachelor; or, A book of the heart"

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A Book of tbe Heart 

• bY iK. M AftVEL • 



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A clandestine meeting from time to time. 



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REVERIES OF 
A BACHELOR 



A BOOK OF THE HEART 



IK MARVEL 

(DONALD t. MITCHELL) | 

IlluttrattJ by 
W. K. B. STARKWEATHER 



^ y 



It is worth the labor — saith Plotinus — lo consider well of 

Love, whether it be a God, or a divell, or passion of the minde, 
or partly God, partly divell, paitly pa&sion. — Burttn^s Anafmj. 



R. F. FENNO & COMPANY 

I 8 East i /th Street, . New York 






.4 k.*. 



ftiW-JC ilB^tA? 






COFYRIOMT, 1906 

By R F. Fknno & Company 



Mrs. E. L. Dixon, 

of 
Hartford, Connecticut, 

this book 

is respectfully inscribed 

by her friend, 

The Author 



PREFACE 

This book is neither more, nor less than it 
pretends to be ; it is a collection of those float- 
ing reveries which have, from time to time^ 
drifted across my brain. I never yet met with 
a bachelor who had not his share of just such 
floating visions; and the only difference be- 
tween us lies in the fact, that I have tossed 
them from me in the shape of a book. 

If they had been worked over with more 
unity of design, I dare say I might have made 
a respectable novel ; as it is, I have chosen the 
honester way of setting them down as they 
came seething from ray thought, with all their 
crudities and contrasts, uncovered. 

As for the truth that is in them, the world 
may believe what it likes ; for having written 
to humor the world, it would be hard, if I 
should curtail any of its privileges of judgment. 
I should think there was as much truth in 
them, as in most Reveries. 

The first story of the book has already had 
some publicity ; and the criticisms upon it have 



Iprcfacc 

[used, and pleased me* One tioaest jounial- 

avows that it could never have been written 

a bachelor. I thank hiiu for thinking so 

111 of me ; and heardly wish that his thought 

|re as true, as it is kind* 

Tet I am inclined to think that bachelors are 

only safe, and secure observers of all the 

|ises of married life. The rest of the world 

ve their hobbies ; and by law, as well as by 

Inemorial custom^ are reckoned unfair wit- 

Isea in everything relating to their matri- 

Inial affairs. 

rerhaps I ought however to make an excep- 
In in favor of spinsters, ^vbo like us, are in- 
1>endent spectators, and [Kissess just that 
Id of indifTerence to the marital state, which 
Ikes them intrepid in their observations, and 
ry desirable for — ^authorities. 
l\s for the style of the book, I have nothing 
1 say for it, except to refer to my title, 
lese are not sermons, nor essays, nor cri ti- 
ps ; they are only Reveries. And if the 
Ider should stumble upon occasional magnil- 
lience, or be worried with a little too much 
[sentiment, pray, let him rememl>er^that 1 
dreaming. 

a 



Ipreface 

But while I say this, in the hope of nicking 
oflf the wiry edge of ray reader's judgment, I 
shall yet stand up boldly for the general tone, 
and character of the book. If there is bad 
feeling in it, or insincerity, or shallow senti- 
ment, or any foolish depth of affection be- 
trayed — I am responsible ; and the critics may 
expose it to their hearts' content. 

I have moreover a kindly feeling for these 
Reveries, from their very private character ; 
they consist mainly of just such whimseys, and 
reflections, as a great many brother bachelors 
are apt to indulge in, but which they are too 
cautious, or too prudent to lay before the 
world. As I have in this matter, shown a 
frankness, and naivete which are unusual, I 
shall ask a corresponding frankness in my 
reader; and I can assure him safely that this 
is eminently one of those books which were 
" never intended for publication." 

In the hope that this plain avowal may 
quicken the reader's charity, and screen me 
from cruel judgment, 

I remain, with sincere good wishes, 

Ik. Makvel. 

New York, Nov., 1850. 



CONTENTS 

FIRST REVERIE 

OvKR A Wood Fire 3 

Smoke — signifyiug Doubt 8 

Blaze— siguifying Cheer 19 

Ashes — signifying Desolation 27 

SECOND REVERIE 

By a City Gbate 3 

Sea-Coal 12 

Anthracite 33 

THIRD REVERIE 

Over His Cigar 3 

Lighted with a Coal 7 

Lighted with a Wisp of Paper 23 

Lighted with a Match 40 

FOURTH REVERIE 

Morning, Noon and Evening 3 

Morning — which is the Past 12 

School Days 23 

The Sea 36 

Father-Laud 46 

11 



(Tontcntd 

A Komaii Girt ...«...*, 56 

The App«QtutA 68 

Eurica .-.*.* 78 

I Noon— which is the Present , * * 1 

Early Friends 4 

School Remil«tl 13 

College 19 

Bella's Packet 98 

I Ereuiog — which is the Future 1 

Carry . * 6 

The Letter . .*,**... 1& 

New TrttTol - . . . . 23 

Uoiue ..*»»< , 37 



12 



FIRST REVERIE 



Smoke, Flame and Ashes 



Over a Wood Fire 

I HAVE got a quiet farmhouse in the coun- 
try, a very humble place to be sure, tenanted 
by a worthy enough man, of the old New Eng- 
land stamp, where I sometimes go for a day 
or two in the winter, to look over the farm- 
accounts, and to see how the stock is thriving 
on the winter's keep. 

One side the door, as you enter from the 
porch, is a little parlor, scarce twelve feet by 
ten, with a cozy looking fireplace — a heavy 
oak floor — a couple of armchairs and a brown 
table with carved lions' feet. Out of this room 
opens a little cabinet, only big enough for a 
broad bachelor bedstead, where I sleep upon 
feathers, and wake in the morning, with my 
eye upon a saucy colored, lithographic print of 
some fancy " Bessy." 

It happens to be the only house in the world, 
of which I am lona-fide owner ; and I take a 
vast deal of comfort in treating it just as I 



©vcr a Moot) fire 



choose, I manage to break some article of 
furniture, almost every time I pay it a visits 
and if I caDnot open the window readily of a 
morning, to breathe the fresh air, I knock out 
a pane or two of glass with my boot. I lean 
against the walls in a ver}^ old armchair there 
is on the premises, and scarce ever fail to 
worry such a hole in the plastering, as would 
set me down for a round charge fur damages 
in town, or make a prim housewife fret herself 
into a raging fever. I laugh out louil with 
myself, in my big armchair^ when I think that 
I aia neither afraid of one nor the otlier. 

As for the fire, I keep the little hearth so 
hot, as to warm half the cellar below, and the 
whole space betu^een the jambs, roars for 
hours together, with white flame* To be sure 
the windows are not very tight, between 
broken panes, and bad joints, so that the fire, 
large as it is, is by no means an extravagant 
comfort 

As night approaches^ I have a huge pile of 
oak and hickory placed beside the hearth ; I 
put out the tallow candle on the raantel (using 
the family snuffers, with one leg broken) then, 
drawing my chair directly in front of the blaz- 




•n . iii'-a.-.;u' ijr •imi-.* -^ •»,. ; \i, ^^ ,,. .,, 



®vcr a TIC100& fire 



ing wood, and setting one foot on each of the 
old iron fire-dogs (until they grow too warm), 
I dispose mj'self for an evening of such sober, 
and thoughtful quietude, as I believe, on my 
soul, that very few of my fellow men have the 
good fortune to enjoy. 

My tenant meantime, in the other room I 
can hear now and then — though there is a 
thick stone chimney, and broad entry between 
— multiplying contrivances with his wife, to 
put two babies to sleep. This occupies them, 
I should say, usually an hour ; though my 
only measure of time (for I never carry a 
watch into the country), is the blaze of my 
fire. By ten, or thereabouts, my stock of 
wood is nearly exhausted ; I pile upon the hot 
coals what remains, and sit watching how it 
kindles, and blazes, and goes out — even like 
our joys ! and then, slip by the light of the 
embers into my bed, where I luxuriate in such 
sound, and healthful slumber, as only such rat- 
tling window frames, and country air, can 
supply. 

But to return: the other evening — it hap- 
pened to be on my last visit to my farmhouse 
— when I had exhausted all the ordinary rural 



®vcr a Moo& fire 



topics of thought, had formed all sorts of con- 
jectures as to the income of the year; had 
planned a new wall around one lot, and the 
clearing up of another, now covered with 
imtriarchal wood; and wondered if the little 
rickety house would not be after all a snug 
enough box, to live and to die in — I fell on a 
sudden into such an unprecedented line of 
thought, which took such a deep hold of my 
sympathies — sometimes even starting tears — 
that I determined, the next day, to set as much 
of it as I could recall, on paper. 

Something — it may have been the home- 
looking blaze (I am a bachelor of — say six and 
twenty), or possibly a plaintive cry of the baby 
in my tenant's room, had suggested to me the 
thought of — Marriage. 

I piled upon the heated fire-dogs, the last 
armful of my wood ; and now, said I, bracing 
myself courageously between the arms of my 
chair — I'll not flinch ; I'll pursue the thought 
wherever it leads, though it lead me to the 
d (I am apt to be hasty) at least — con- 
tinued I, softening — until my fire is out. 

The wood was green, and at first showed no 
disposition to blaze. It smoked furiously. 



®vcr a Moot) fire 



Smoke, thought I, always goes before blaze ; 
and so does doubt go before decision : and my 
reverie, from that very starting point, slipped 
into this shape : 



®ver a Moot) fire 



SMOKE— SIGNIFYING DOUI 

A WIFE? thought I; yes, a wife 
why I 

And pray, my dear sir, why not- 
Why not doubt ; why not hesitate ; w 
tremble ? 

Does a man buy a ticket in a lot 
poor man, whose whole earnings gc 
secure the ticket — without trembling 
tating, and doubting? 

Can a man stake his bachelor respect 
his independence, and comfort, upon th 
absorbing, unchanging, relentless m^ 
without trembling at the venture ? 

Shall a man who has been free to cl 
fancies over the wide world, without 
hindrance, shut himself up to marria 
within four walls called home, that 
claim him, his time, his trouble, and hi 
thenceforward forever more, without 
thick, and thick-coming as smoke ? 
8 



®vcr a Moo^ fire 



Shall he who has been hitherto a mere ob- 
server of other men's cares and business, 
moving oflF where they made him sick of heart, 
approaching whenever and wherever they 
made him gleeful — shall he now undertake 
administration of just such cares and business 
without qualms? Shall he, whose whole life 
has been but a nimble succession of escapes 
from trifling difficulties, now broach without 
doubtings — that matrimony, where if difficulty 
beset him there is no escape ? Shall this brain 
of mine, careless- working, never tired with 
idleness, feeding on long vagaries, and high, 
gigantic castles, dreaming out beatitudes hour 
by hour — turn itself at length to such dull 
task-work, as thinking out a livelihood for wife 
and children ? 

Where thenceforward will be those sunny 
dreams, in which I have warmed my fancies, 
and my heart, and lighted my eye with crystal ? 
This very marriage, which a brilliant working 
imagination has invested time and again with 
brightness, and delight, can serve no longer as 
a mine for teeming fancy : all, alas, will bo 
gone — reduced to the dull standard of the 
actual I No more room for intrepid forays of 
9 



®vcr a TKI100& fire 



imagination — no more gorgeous realm-making 
— all will be over 1 

Why not, I thought, go on dreaming? 

Can any wife be prettier than an after din- 
ner fancy, idle and yet vivid, can paint for 
you ? Can any children make less noise, than 
the little rosy-cheeked ones, who have no ex- 
istence, except in the omnium gatherum of 
your own brain ? Can any housewife be more 
unexceptionable than she who goes sweeping 
daintily the cobwebs that gather in your 
dreams? Can any domestic larder be better 
stocked, than the private larder of your head 
dozing on a cushioned chair-back at Delmon- 
ico's ? Can any family purse be better filled 
than the exceeding plump one you dream of, 
after reading such pleasant books as Mun- 
chausen, or Typee ? 

But if, after all, it must be— duty, or what- 
not, making provocation — what then ? And I 
clapped ray feet hard against the fire-dogs, and 
leaned back, and turned ray face to the ceiling, 
as much as to say : And where on earth, then, 
shall a poor devil look for a wife ? 

Somebody says, Lyttleton or Shaftesbury, I 
think, that, "marriages would be happier if 



®ver a IRIloo^ fire 



they were all arranged by the lord chancellor.'^ 
Unfortunately, we have no lord chancellor to 
make this commutation of our misery. 

Shall a man, then, scour the country on a 
mule's back, like Honest Gil Bias, of Santil- 
lane; or shall he make application to some 
such intervening providence as Madame St. 
Marc, who, as I see by the Presse^ manages 
these matters to one's hand, for some five per 
cent, on the fortunes of the parties ? 



©ver a MooD fire 



I Then — again — there are the plaguey wife's- 
lelations. Who knows how many third, 
l>urth, or Qfth cousins will appear at careless, 
lomplimentary intervals long after you had 
lettled into the placid belief tliat all congratu- 
litory visits were at an end? How many 
Iwisted-headed brothers will be putting in 
Iheir advice^ as a friend to Peggy ? 
I IIovv many maiilen aunts will come to si>end 
I month or two with their *^dcar Peggy," and 
Ivant to know every tea-tiuie, *' if slie isn*t a 
■ear love of a wife?" Then, dear fatherin- 
liw will beg (taking dear Peggy's hand in his), 
lo give a little wholesome counsel ; and will be 
r ery sure to advise just the contrary of what 
ioit liad determined to undertake. And dear 
lianiuia-in-law must set her nose into Peggy's 
lupboard, and insist upon having tlie key to 
I our own private locker in the wainscot. 
I Then, perhaps, there is a little bevy of dirty- 
losed nephews who come to spent! the holi- 
llays, and eat np your East India sweetmeats ^ 
Ind who are forever tramping over your head 
Ir raising the old Harry below, while you are 
lusy with your clients. Last, and worst, is 
me fidgety old uncle, forever too cold or too 



Qvcv a IIUloo^ five 



hot, who vexes you with his patruiiiziny airs, 
and impudently kisses his little Peggy ! 

That could be borne, however : lor per- 
haps he has promised his fortune to Peggy. 
Peggy, then, will be rich (and the thought 
made me rub my shins, which were now 
getting comfortably warm upon the fire-dogs). 
Then, she will be forever talking of Aer for- 
tune; and pleasantly reminding you on occa- 
sion of a favorite purchase — how lucky that 
she had the means; and dropping hints about 
economy ; and buying very extravagant 
Paisleys. 

She will annoy you by looking over the 
stock-list at breakfast time; and mention quite 
carelessly to your clients, that she is interested 
in such, or such a speculation. 

She will be provokingly silent when you 
hint to a tradesman, that you have not the 
money by yon, for his small bill — in short, she 
will tear the life out of you, making you pay 
in righteous retribution of annoyance, grief, 
vexation, shame, and sickness of heart, for the 
superlative folly of "marrying rich." 

But if not rich, then poor. Bah ! the 

thought made me stir the coals ; but there was 



©ver a Wioo^ ftre 



Ljll no blaze. The paltry earnings you ara 
Ible to wring out of clients by the sweat of 
lour brow, will now be all our income j you 
lill be [leatered for pia-money, and pestered 
Irith yoar poor wife's relations. Ten to one, 
lie will stickle about taste — '* Sir Visto's" — 
Ind want to make this so pretty, and that so 
Iharming, if she ofify had the means ; and is 
lire Paul (a kiss) can't deny his little Peggy 
luch a trifling suni^ and aLl for the common 
lenefit. 

I Then she, for one, means that her children 
■han't go a-begging for clothes — and another 
lull at the purse. Trust a poor mother to 
Iress her childrea in finery I 
I Perhaps she is ugly — not noticeable at first; 
lut growing on her, and (what is worse) gro\r' 
mg faster on you. You wonder why you didn't 
lee that vulgar nose long ago : and that lip- 
It is very strange, you think, that you ever 
Ihought it pretty. And then — to come to 
Ireakfast, with her hair looking as it does, and 
lou, not so much as daring to say — *' Peggy, 
Wo brush your hair ! " Her foot, too — not very 
lad when decently ehau^^ee — but now, since 
e's married, she does wear such infernal 



Qvcv a 'modb five 



slippers ! And yet, for all this, to be prigging 
up for an hour, when any of my old chums 
come to dine with me ! 

"Bless your kind hearts! my dear fellows," 
said I, thrusting the tongs into the coals, and 
speaking out loud, as if my voice could reach 
from Virginia to Paris — " not married yet ! " 

Perhaps Peggy is pretty enough — only 
shrewish. 

No matter for cold coffee ; you should 

have been up before. 

What sad, thin, poorly cooked chops, to eat 
with your rolls ! 

She thinks they are very good, and 

wonders how you can set such an example to 
your children. 

The butter is nauseating. 

She has no other, and hopes you'll not 

raise a storm about butter a little turned. I 
think I see myself — ruminated I — sitting 
meekly at table, scarce daring to lift up my 
eyes, utterly fagged out with some quarrel of 
yesterday, choking down detestably sour 
muflSns, that my wife thinks are " delicious " 
— slipping in dried mouthfuls of burned ham 
off the side of my fork tines — slipping off my 



©vcr a Mood jfirc 



air side- ways at the end, and slipping out 

lb nxy hat between my knees, lu business, 

il never feeling myself a competent, sound- 

linded man, till the uak door is between me 

— ^'^ Ua, ha — not yet ! " said I ; and in so 
rnest a tone, that ruy dog started to his feet 
cocked his eye to have a good look into 
face — met my smile of triumph with an 
iabte wag of the tail, and curled up again 
the corner. 

Again, Peggy is rich enough, well enough, 
ild enough, only she doesn't care a tig for 
>u. She has married you because father, or 
and fa then thought the match eligible, and 
!cause she tlitln't wish to disoblige them. 
!sides^ she didn't positively hate you, and 
ought you were a respectable enough young 
rson ; she has told yon so repeatedly at dinner, 
Ue wonders you like to read poetry ; she 
shea you would buy her a good cook-book ; 
d insists u{K>n you making your will at the 
rtli of the lirst baby. 

Slit' thinks Captain So- and -So a splendid 
joking fellow, and wishes you would trim up 
|little, were it only for appearance' sake. 
16 



Qvcv a TW100& fire 



You ueed not hurry up from tbe office so 
early at night : she, bless her dear heart I does 
not feel lonely. You read to her a love tale ; 
she interrupts the pathetic parts with direc- 
tions to her seamstress. Y"ou read of mar- 
riages : she sigbs, and asks if Captain So-and-So 
has left town I She hates to be mewed up in 
a cottage, or between brick walls ; she does so 
love the Springs ! 

But, again, Peggy loves you; at least she 
swears it, with her hand on the Sorrows of 
Werter. She has pin-money which she spends 
for the Literary World and the friends in 
council. She is not bad looking, save a bit too 
much of forehead ; nor is she sluttish, unless a 
neglige till three o'clock, and an ink stain on 
the forefinger be sluttish ; but then she is such 
a sad blue ! 

Y"ou never fancied when you saw her buried 
in a three volumed novel, that it was anything 
more than a girlish vagary ; and when she 
quoted Latin, you thought innocently, that 
she had a capital memory for her samplers. 

But to be bored eternally about Divine 
Dante and funny Goldoni, is too bad. Your 
copy of Tasso, a treasure print of 1680, is all 



®vcr a Moob fire 



uinbed and dog^s eared, and spotted with 
|y grueL Even your Seneca — an Elzevir—^ 
U sweaty with handling. She adores La 
taine, reads Bakac with a kind of artist 
vl, and will not let Greek alone. 
ou hint at broken rest and an aching head 
)reakfast, and she will fling you a scrap uf 
liiology — in lieu of tho camphor bottle — or 
lit the alat fli«?j of tragic chorus. 

The nurse is getting dinner; you are 
ling the baby ; Peggy is reading Bruy^re, 
he tire smoked thick as pitch, and puffed 
little clouuls over the chimney piece, I 
e the fork-stick a kick^ at the thought of 
gy, baby and Bruyfire. 

Suddenly the flames flickered bluely 
wart the smoke — caught at a twig below — 
ed round the mossy oak -slick — twined 
ng the crackling tree-limbs — mounted — lit 
the whole body of sniukcj and blazed out 
erily and bright. Doubt vanished with 
•ke, and Hope began with Flame. 



®vcr a IKI100& fire 



BLAZE— SIGNIFYING CHEER 

I PUSHED my chair back ; drew up another; 
stretched out my feet cozily upon it, rested my 
elbows on the chair arms, leaned my head on 
one hand, and looked straight into the leaping, 
and dancing flame. 

Love is a flame — ruminated I ; and 

{glancing round the room) how a flame 
brightens up a man's habitation. 

"Carlo," said I, calling up my dog into the 
light, "good fellow, Carlo!" and I patted him 
kindly, and he wagged his tail, and laid his 
nose across ray knee, and looked wistfully up 
in my face ; then strode away — turned to look 
again, and lay down to sleep. 

" Pho, the brute ! " said I, " it is not enough 
after all, to like a dog." 

If now in that chair yonder, not the one 

your feet lie upon, but the other, beside you — 
closer yet — were seated a sweet-faced girl, with 
a pretty little foot lying out upon the hearth — a 
bit of lace running round the swelling throat — 



Over a Wioot^ five 



baif parted to a charm over a forehead 

1 as any of your dreiitiis ; and if you could 
\h an arm around that chair backj without 

of giving uffense, and suffer your fingers 
[lay idly with those curls that escape dowu 
Ineck; and if you could clasp with your 
pr hand those little white, taper ^ngere of 
I, which lie so temptingly wiihin reach 
pd sOj talk softly and low in presence of 

blaze, while the hours slip without knowl- 
and the winter winds whistle uncared 

if, in short, you were no bachelor, but 
Ihusband of some such sweet image (dream, 
" it rather)> would it not be far pleasanter 
this cold single night-sitting — counting 
[sticks — reckoning the length of the blaze, 
Ithe height of the falling snow ? 
|nd if, some or all of those wild vagaries 

grow on your fancy at such an hour, you 

It! whisper into listening, because loving ears 

|rs not tiretl with listening, because it is you 

whisper — ^ars ever indulgent because 

■ to praise; and if your darkest fancies 
lit up, not merely vvith bright wood-firej 

with a ringing laugh of that sweet face 
|ed up in fond rebuke — ^how far better^ 
20 



®vcr a miloot) five 



than to be waxing black and sour, over 
pestilential humors — alone — ^}'our very dog 
asleep. 

And if when a glowing thought comes into 
your brain, quick and sudden, you could tell it 
over as to a second self, to that sweet creature, 
who is not away, because she loves to be there ; 
and if you could watch the thought catching 
that girlish mind, illumining that fair brow, 
sparkling in those pleasantest of eyes — how far 
better than to feel it slumbering, and going 
out, heavy, lifeless, and dead, in your own 
selfish fancy. And if a generous emotion 
steals over you — coming, you know not 
whither, would there not be a richer charm in 
lavishing it in caress, or endearing word, upon 
that fondest, and most dear one, than in pat- 
ting your glossy-coated dog, or sinking lonely 
to smiling slumbers ? 

How would not benevolence ripen with such 
monitor to task it ! How would not selfish- 
ness grow faint and dull, leaning ever to that 
second self, which is the loved one ! How 
would not guile shiver, and grow weak, before 
that girl-brow, and eye of innocence! How 
would not all that boyhood prized of enthusi- 
21 



Qvcv a TKHoo^ fire 



usm, and quick blood, and life, renew itself in 
such presence ! 

The fire was getting hotter, and I moved 
into the middle of the room. The shadows 
the flames made, were playing like fairy forms 
over floor, and wall, and ceiling. 

My fancy would surely quicken, thought I, 
if such being were in attendance. Surely 
imagination would be stronger, and purer, if 
it could have the playful fancies of dawning 
womanhood to delight it. All toil would be 
torn from mind-labor, if but another heart 
grew into this present soul, quickening it, 
warming it, cheering it, bidding it ever — God 
speed ! 

Her face would make a halo, rich as a rain- 
bow, atop of ail such noisome things, as we 
lonely souls call trouble. Her smile would illu- 
mine the blackest of crowding cares ; and dark- 
ness that now seats you despondent, in your 
solitary chair for days together, weaving bitter 
fancies, dreaming bitter dreams, would grow 
light and thin, and spread, and float awny — 
chased by that beloved smile. 

Your friend — poor fellow ! dies: never mind, 
that gentle chisp of /ter fingers, as she steals 




vvu,,; 



(l.r h. ,, |;(.,k1 1M- /•■l 'Ti- •{-■A-r.i rr!U-v\ I[>CiI 



- /• /c 



'l',r ., II ... . I: 



Qvcv a TWloo^ five 



behind you, telling you not to weep — it is 
worth ten friends ! 

Tour sister, sweet one, is dead — buried. 
The worms are busy with all her fairness. 
How it makes you think earth nothing but a 
spot to dig graves upon ! 

It is more: sh^j she says, will be a 

sister ; and the waving curls as she leans upon 
your shoulder, touch your cheek, and your wet 
eyes turn to meet those other eyes — God has 
sent his angel, surely ! 

Tour mother, alas for it, she is gone! Is 
there any bitterness to a youth, alone, and 
homeless, like this ! 

But you are not homeless; you are not 
alone : she is there — her tears softening yours, 
her smile lighting yours, her grief killing 
yours ; and you live again, to assuage that 
kind sorrow of hers. 

Then — those children, rosy, fair-haired ; no, 
they do not disturb you with their prattle now 
— they are yours ! Toss away there on the 
greensward — never mind the hyacinths, the 
snowdrops, the violets, if so be any are there ; 
the perfume of their healthful lips is worth nil 
the flowers of the world. No need now to 



®vcr a Moob fire 



gather wild bouquets to love, and cherish : 
flower, tree, gun, are all dead things ; things 
livelier hold your soul. 

And she, the mother, sweetest and fairest of 
all, watching, tending, caressing, loving, till 
your own heart grows pained with tenderest 
jealousy, and cures itself with loving. 

You have no need now of any cold lecture 
to teach thankfulness ; your heart is full of it. 
Ko need now, as once, of bursting blossoms, 
of trees taking leaf, and greenness, to turn 
thought kindly, and thankfully ; for, ever be- 
side 3' ou, there is bloom, and ever beside 3'ou 
there is fruit — for which eye, heart, and soul 
are full of unknown, and unspoken, because 
unspeakable, thank-offering. 

And if sickness catches you, binds you, lays 
you down — no lonely meanings, and wicked 
curses at careless stepping nurses. The step is 
noiseless, and 3'et distinct beside you. The 
white curtains are drawn, or withdrawn by 
the magic of that other presence ; and the 
soft, cool hand is upon 3^our brow. 

No cold comfortings of friend- watchers, 
merely come in to steal a word away from that 
outer world which is pulling at their skirts ; 
24 



®vcr a Moob fire 



but, ever the sad, shaded brow of her, whose 
lightest sorrow for your sake is your greatest 
grief — if it were not a greater joy. 

The blaze was leaping light and high, and 
the wood falling under the growing heat. 

So, continued I, this heart would be at 

length itself — striving with everything gross, 
even now as it clings to grossness. Love would 
make its strength native and progressive. 
Earth's cares would fly. Joys would double. 
Susceptibilities be quickened ; love master self ; 
and having made the mastery, stretch onward, 
and upward towards infinitude. 

And if the end came, and sickness brought 
that follower — Great Follower — which sooner 
or later is sure to come after, then the heart, 
and the hand of love, ever near, are giving to 
your tired soul, daily and hourly, lessons of 
that love which consoles, which triumphs, 
which circleth all, and centereth in all — love 
infinite and divine ! 

Kind hands — none but hers — will smooth 
the hair upon your brow as the chill grows 
damp, and heavy on it; and her fingers — none 
but hers — will lie in yours as the wasted flesh 
stiffens, and hardens for the ground. Her 



®vcr a Moo& fire 



tears — ^you could feel no others, if oceans fell 
— will warm your drooping features once more 
to life ; once more your eye lighted in joyous 
triumph, kindle in her smile, and then 

The fire fell upon the hearth ; the blaze gave 
a last leap — a flicker — then another — caught 
a little remaining twig — blazed up — wavered — 
went out. 

There was nothing but a bed of glowing 
embers, over which the white ashes gathered 
fast. I was alone, with only my dog for 
company. 



26 



®vcr a Moo& fire 



ASHES— SIGNIFYING DESOLATION 

Aftkk all, thought I, ashes follow blaze in- 
evitably as death follows life. Misery treads 
on the heels of joy ; anguish rides swift after 
pleasure. 

" Come to me again, Carlo," said I to my 
dog ; and I patted him fondly once more, but 
now only by the light of the dying embers. 

It is very little pleasure one takes in fond- 
ling brute favorites ; but it is a pleasure that 
when it passes, leaves no void. It is only a 
little alleviating redundance in your solitary 
heart-life, which if lost, another can be sup- 
plied. 

But if your heart, not solitary — not quieting 
its humors with mere love of chase, or dog — 
not repressing year after year, its earnest 
yearnings after something better, and more 
spiritual — has fairly linked itself by bonds 
strong as life, to another heart — is the casting 
oflf easy then ? 



Qvcv a Moo^ fire 



Is it then only a little heart-redundancy cut 
off, which the next bright sunset will fill up ? 

And my fancy, as it had painted doubt 
under the smoke, and cheer under warmth of 
the blaze, so now it began under the faint light 
of the smoldering embers, to picture heart- 
desolation. 

What kind, congratulatory letters, hosts of 
them, coming from old and half-forgotten 
friends, now that your happiness is a year, or 
two years old ! 

" Beautiful." 

Ay, to be sure, beautiful ! 

" Rich." 

Pho, the dawdler ! how little he knows 

of heart-treasure, who speaks of wealth to a 
man who loves his wife, as a wife only should 
be loved ! 

" Young." 

Young indeed ; guileless as infancy ; 

charming as the morning. 

Ah, these letters bear a sting : they bring to 
mind, with new and newer freshness, if it be 
possible, the value of that, which you tremble 
lest you lose. 

How anxiously you watch that step — if it 
28 



QvcT a Moo& fire 



lose not its buoyancy. How you study the 
color on that cheek, if it grow not fainter. 
How you tremble at the luster in those eyes, 
if it be not the luster of death. How you 
totter under the weight of that muslin sleeve 
— a phantom weight ! How you fear to do it, 
and yet press forward, to note if that breath- 
ing be quickened, as you ascend the home- 
heights, to look off on the sunset lighting the 
plain. 

Is your sleep, quiet sleep, after that she has 
whispered to you her fears, and in the same 
breath — soft as a sigh, sharp as an arrow — bid 
you bear it bravely ? 

Perhaps — the embers were now glowing 
fresher, a little kindling, before the ashes — she 
triumphs over disease. 

But, Poverty, the world's almoner, has come 
to you with ready, spare hand. 

Alone, with your dog living on bones, and 
you, on hope — kindling each morning, dying 
slowly each night — this could be borne. Phi- 
losophy would bring home its stores to the lone 
man. Money is not in his hand, but knowledge 
is in his brain ! and from that brain he draws 
out faster, as he draws slower from his pocket. 
29 



Qvcv a Moo& fire 



He remembers ; and on remembrance he can 
live for days, and weeks. The garret, if a 
garret covers him, is rich in fancies. The rain 
if it pelts, pelts only him used to rain-pelt- 
ings. And his dog crouches not in dread, but 
in companionship. His crust he divides with 
him, and laughs. He crowns himself with 
glorious memories of Cervantes, though he 
begs: if he nights it under the stars, he dreams 
heaven-sent dreams of the prisoned, and home- 
less Galileo. 

He hums old sonnets, and snatches of poor 
Jonson's plays. He chants Dryden's odes, 
and dwells on Ot way's rhyme. He reasons 
with Bolingbroke or Diogenes, as the humor 
takes him ; and laughs at the world, for the 
world thank Heaven, has left him alone ! 

Keep your money, old misers, and your 
palaces, old princes — the world is mine ! 

I care not, fortune, what you me deny. 

You cannot rob me of free nature's grace, 
You cannot shut the windows of the sky ; 

You cannot bar my constant feet to trace 
The woods and lawns, by livinjj streams, at eve. 

Let health, my nerves and finer fibers brace, 
And I, their toys, to the great children, leave. 

Of fancy, reason, virtue, nought can we bereave I 



®vcr a Moob fire 



But — if not alone ? 

If she is clinging to you for support, for con- 
solation, for home, for life — she, reared in lux- 
ury perhaps, is faint for bread ? 

Then, the iron enters the soul; then the 
nights darken under any sky light. Then the 
days grow long, even in the solstice of winter. 

She may not complain ; what then ? 

Will your heart grow strong, if the strength 
of her love can dam up the fountains of tears, 
and the tied tongue not tell of bereavement ? 
Will it solace you to find her parting the poor 
treasure of food you have stolen for her, with 
begging, foodless children ? 

But this ill, strong hands, and heaven's help, 
will put down. Wealth again ; flowers again ; 
patrimonial acres again ; brightness again. 
But your little Bessie, your favorite child is 
pining. 

Would to God ! you say in agony, that 
wealth could bring fulness again into that 
blanched cheek, or round those little thin lips 
once more; but it cannot. Thinner and thin- 
ner they grow ; plaintive and more plaintive 
her sweet voice. 

"Dear Bessie" — and your tones tremble; 



©vcr a IU100& fire 



feel that abe b on the edge of the grave ? 

you pluck her back? Can endeariuenLU 

her? Business is heavy* away from the 

lid child ; hume^ you go, to fondle while yet 

|o is left — but this time you are too late. 

is gone* She cannot liear you : she cannot 

Ink you for the violets you put wuthin hur 

|r white hand. 

Lntt then— the grassy mound — the cold 

liluw of head* stone 1 

lie winti, growing with the night, is rat- 
jig at the window panes, and whistles dis- 
ly. I wipe a tear, and in the interval *if 
reveriej thank God, that I am no such 
lurner, 

hut gaiety, snailfooted, creeps back to the 
[isehold. All is bright again : 

The violet bed*s not sweeter 
Tlmu tlit> tlencioua breath marriage lienda fortfi. 

Uer Hp 13 rich and full ; her cheek delicate 
|i flower. Iler frailty doubles your love. 
IVnd the little one she clasps— frail too— too 
111: the boy you had get your hopes and 
nt on. You have watched him growing, 
prettier, ever winning more and more 



®vcr a Moo& fire 



upon your soul. The love you bore to him 
when he first lisped names — ^your name and 
hers — has doubled in strength now that he asks 
innocently to be taught of this, of that, and 
promises you by that quick curiosity that 
flashes in his eye, a mind full of intelligence. 

And some hair-breadth escape by sea, or 
flood, that he perhaps may have had — which 
unstrung your soul to such tears, as you pray 
God may be spared you again — has endeared 
the little fellow to your heart, a thousandfold. 

And, now with his pale sister in the grave, 
all that love has come away from the mound, 
where worms feast, and centers on the boy. 

How you watch the storms lest they harm 
him ! How often you steal to his bed late at 
night, and lay your hand lightly upon the 
brow, where the curls cluster thick, rising and 
falling with the throbbing temples, and watch, 
for minutes together, the little lips half parted, 
and listen — ^your ear close to them — if the 
breathing be regular and sweet ! 

But the day comes — the night rather — 
when you can catch no breathing. 

Aye, put your hair away — compose yourself 
— listen again. 

33 



0ver a Moo^ fire 



No, there is nothing ! 

Put your hand now to his brow — damp in- 
deed — but not with helpful night sleep : it is 
not your hand, no, do not deceive yourself — it 
is your loved boy's forehead that is so cold ; 
and your loved boy will never speak to you 
again — never play again — he is dead I 

Oh, the tears — the tears: what blessed 
things are tears ! Never fear now to let them 
fall on his forehead, or his lip, lest you waken 
him ! Clasp him — clasp him harder — ^you can- 
not hurt, you cannot waken him I Lay him 
down, gently or not, it is the same ; he is stiflf ; 
lie is stark and cold. 

But courage is elastic; it is our pride. It 
recovers itself easier, thought I, than these 
embers will get into blaze again. 

But courage, and patience, faith, and hope 
have their limit. Blessed be the man who 
escapes such trial as will determine limit I 

To a lone man it comes not near; for how 
can trial take hold where there is nothing by 
which to try ? 

A funeral ? You reason with philosophy. 
A graveyard? You read Ilervey and muse 
upon the wall. A friend dies? You sigh, 
34 



®vcr a Moob fire 



you pat your dog — it is over. Losses ? You 
retrench — ^you light your pipe — it is forgotten. 
Calumny ? You laugh — ^}'ou sleep. 

But with that childless wife clinging to you 
in love and sorrow — what then ? 

Can you take down Seneca now, and coolly 
blow the dust from the leaf-tops ? Can you 
crimp your lip with Voltaire ? Can you smoke 
idly, your feet dangling with the ivies, your 
tLoughts all waving fancies upon a church- 
yard wall — a wall that borders the grave of 
your boy ? 

Can you amuse yourself by turning stinging 
Martial into rhyme ? Can you pat your dog, 
and seeing him wakeful and kind, say, " It is 
enough " ? Can you sneer at calumny, and sit 
hy your fire dozing ? 

Blessed, thought I again, is the man who 
escapes such trial as will measure the limit of 
patience and the limit of courage ! 

But the trial comes — colder and colder were 
growing the embers. 

That wife, over w^hom your love broods, is 
fading. Not beauty fading — that, now that 
your heart is wrapped in her being, would be 
nothing. 

35 



Qvcv a Moot) fire 



She sees with quick eye your dawning ap- 
prehension, and she tries hard to make that 
step of hers elastic. 

Your trials and your loves together have 
centered your affections. They are not now as 
when you were a lone man, wide-spread and 
superficial. They have caught from domestic 
attachments a finer tone and touch. They 
cannot shoot out tendrils into barren world- 
soil and suck up thence strengthening nutri- 
ment. They have grown under the forcing- 
glass of home-roof, they will not now bear 
exposure. 

You do not now look men in the face as if 
a heart-bond was linking you — as if a com- 
munity of feeling lay between. There is a 
heart-bond that absorbs all others ; there is a 
community that monopolizes your feeling. 
When the heart lay wide open, before it had 
grown upon, and closed around particular 
objects, it could take strength and cheer from 
a hundred connections that now seem colder 
than ice. 

And now those particular objects — alas for 
you ! — are failing. 

What anxiety pursues you ! How you 



®vcr a Moot) fire 



struggle to fancy — there is no danger; how 
she struggles to persuade you — there is no 
danger I 

How it grates now on your ear — the toil 
and turmoil of the city I It was music when 
you were alone; it was pleasant even, when 
from the din you were elaborating comforts 
for the cherished objects — when you had such 
sweet escape as evening drew on. 

Now it maddens you to see the world care- 
less while you are steeped in care. They hustle 
you in the street; they smile at you across 
the table; they bow carelessly over the way; 
they do not know what canker is at your heart. 

The undertaker comes with his bill for the 
dead boy's funeral. He knows your grief ; he 
is respectful. You bless him in your soul. 
You wish the laughing street-goers were all 
undertakers. 

Your eye follows the physician as he leaves 
your house : is he wise, you ask yourself ; is 
he'prudent ? is he the best ? Did he never fail 
— is he never forgetful ? 

And now the hand that touches yours, is 
it no thinner — no whiter than yesterday? 
Sunny days come when she revives; color 



®vcr a Moo^ fire 



comes back ; she breathes freer ; she picks 
flowers; she meets you with a smile. Hope 
lives again. 

But the next day of storm she is fallen. 
She cannot talk even ; she presses your hand. 

You hurry away from business before your 
time. What matter for clients — who is to 
reap the rewards ? What matter for fame — 
whose eye will it brighten ? What matter for 
riches — whose is the inheritance ? 

You find her propped with pillows ; she is 
looking over a little picture-book bethumbed 
by the dear boy she has lost. She hides it in 
her chair ; she has pity on you. 

^Another day of revival, when the spring 

sun shines, and flowers open out of doors ; she 
leans on your arm, and strolls into the garden 
where the first birds are singing. Listen to 
them with her — what memories are in bird- 
songs ! You need not shudder at her tears — 
they are tears of thanksgiving. Press the 
hand that lies light upon your arm, and you, 
too, thank God, while yet you may 1 

You are early home — mid-afternoon. Your 
step is not light ; it is heavy, terrible. 
38 



®vcr a Moo& five 



They have sent for you. 

She is lying down ; her eyes half closed ; 
her breathing long and interrupted. 

She hears you ; her eyes open ; you put 
your hand in hers; yours trembles — hers does 
not. Her lips move ; it is your name. 

" Be strong," she says, " God will help 
you ! " 

She presses harder your hand : " Adieu ! *' 

A long breath — another; you are alone 
again. No tears now ; poor man ! You can- 
not find them ! 

Again home early. There is a smell of 



varnish in your house. A coffin is there ; they 
have clothed the body in decent grave clothes, 
and the undertaker is screwing down the lid, 
slipping round on tiptoe. Does he fear to 
waken her ? 

He asks you a simple question about the in- 
scription upon the plate, rubbing it with his 
coat cuflf. You look him straight in the eye ; 
you motion to the door ; you dare not speak. 

He takes up his hat and glides out stealthf ul 
as a cat. 

The man has done his work well for all. It 



Qvcv a TRIloo^ five 



is a nice coffin — a very nice coffin I Pass your 
hand over it — how smooth ! 

Some sprigs of mignonette are lying care- 
lessly in a little gilt-edged saucer. She loved 
mignonette. 

It is a good stanch table the coffin rests on ; 
it is your table; you are a housekeeper — a 
man of family ! 

Ay, of family ! keep down outcry, or the 
nurse will be in. Look over at the pinched 
features ; is this all that is left of her ? And 
where is your heart now ? No, don't thrust 
your nails into your hands, nor mangle your 
lip, nor grate your teeth together. If you 
could only weep ! 

Another day. The coffin is gone out. 

The stupid mourners have wept — what idle 
tears I She with your crushed heart, has gone 
out! 

Will you have pleasant evenings at your 
home now ? 

Go into your parlor that your prim house- 
keeper has made comfortable with clean hearth 
and blaze of sticks. 

Sit down in your chair ; there is another 
velvet-cushioned one, over against yours — 



Qvct a mooib five 



empty. You press your fingers on your eye- 
balls, as if you would press out something that 
hurt the brain ; but you cannot. Your head 
leans upon your hand ; your eye rests upon the 
flashing blaze. 

Ashes always come after blaze. 

Go now into the room where she was sick — 
softly, lest the prim housekeeper come after. 

They have put new dimity upon her chair ; 
they have hung new curtains over the bed. 
They have removed from the stand its vials, 
and silver bell ; they have put a little vase of 
flowers in their place; the perfume \vill not 
offend the sick sense now. They have half 
opened the window, that the room so long 
closed may have air. It will not be too cold. 

She is not there. 

Oh, God ! thou who dost temper the 

wind to the shorn lamb — be kind ! 

The embers were dark; I stirred them; 
there was no sign of life. My dog was asleep. 
The clock in my tenarft's chamber had struck 
one. 

I dashed a tear or two from my eyes ; how 
they came there I know not. I half ejaculated 
a prayer of thanks, that such desolation had 



^er a TRIloo^ five 



not yet come nigh me ; and a prayer of hope 
— ^that it might never come. 

In a half hour more, I was sleeping soundly. 
My reverie was ended. 



42 



SECOND REVERIE 



By a City Grate 

Blessed be letters — they are the monitors, 
they are also the comforters, and they are the 
only true heart-talkers ! Your speech, and 
their speeches, are conventional ; they are 
molded by circumstance ; they are suggested 
by the observation, remark, and influence of 
the parties to whom the speaking is addressed, 
or by whom it may be overheard. 

Your truest thought is modified half through 
its utterance by a look, a sign, a smile, or a 
sneer. It is not individual ; it is not integral : 
it is social and mixed — half of you, and half of 
others. It bends, it sways, it multiplies, it 
retires, and it advances, as the talk of others 
presses, relaxes, or quickens. 

But it is not so of letters — there you are, 
with only the soulless pen, and the snow-white, 
virgin paper. Your soul is measuring itself by 
itself, and saying its own sayings : there are no 
sneers to modify its utterance — no scowl to 



B? a Ctt? 6nae 



icar^r — nothing is present bat roo, and joar 
tboagbt. 

UtUrr it then freely — write it domi — stamp 
it — burn it in the ink ! — There it is. a true sool- 
print ! 

Oh, the glorj, the freedom, the passion of a 
letter ! It ii worth all the lip-talk in the world. 
IMj you jOLYj it is stadied, made np« acted, re- 
hean^J, contrived, artistic ? 

I>;t me see it, then ; let me run it over ; tell 
me age, sex, circumstance, and I will tell you 
if it be studied or real — if it be the merest lip- 
slang put into words, or heart-talk blazing on 
the paper. 

I have a little packet, not very large, tied up 
with narrow, crimson ribbon, now soiled with 
fr('j{Uftni handling, which far into some win- 
ter's night, I take down from its nook upon 
rny shelf, and untie, and open, and run over, 
with Huch H4^>rro\v, and such joy — such tears 
»nd Hucli Hrnilc's, as I am sure make me for 
wcfikn after, a kinder and holier man. 

There aro in this little packet, letters in the 
familiar hand of a mother — what gentle ad- 
nirinition — what tender aflfection I — God have 
mercy on him who outlives the tears that such 



»^ a CiVi Ovate 



admonitions, and such affection call up to the 
eye ! There are others in the budget, in the 
delicate, and unformed hand of a loved, and 
lost sister — written when she, and you were 
full of glee, and the best mirth of youthful- 
ness ; does it harm you to recall that mirthf ul- 
ness ? or to trace again, for the hundredth 
time, that scrawling postscript at the bottom, 
with its i^8 so carefully dotted, and its gigantic 
fs so carefully crossed, by the childish hand of 
a little brother ? 

I have added latterly to that packet of let- 
ters ; I almost need a new and longer ribbon ; 
the old one is getting too short. Not a few 
of these new and cherished letters, a former 
reverie* has brought to me ; not letters of cold 
praise, saying it was well done, artfully exe- 
cuted, prettily imagined — no such thing : but 
letters of sympathy — of sympathy which means 
sympathy — the TzaOr^/il and the (tuv. 

It would be cold, and dastardly work to 
copy them; I am too selfish for that. It is 
enough to say that they, the kind writers. 



»i2 a Citi? (Brate 



have seen a heart ia the reverie — have felt that 
it was real, true. They know it ; a secret 
influence has told it. What matters it, pray, 
if literally, there was no wife, and no dead 
child, and no cofiin in the house ? Is not feel- 
ing, feeling ; and heart, heart ! Are not these 
fancies thronging on my brain, bringing tears 
to my eyes, bringing joy to my soul, as living, 
as anything human can be living? What if 
tliey have no material type — no objective 
form? All that is crude — a mere reduction 
of ideality to sense — a transformation of the 
spiritual to the earthy — a leveling of soul to 
matter. 

Are we not creatures of thought and passion ? 
Is anything about us more earnest than that 
same thought and passion ? Is there anything 
more real — more characteristic of that great 
and dim destiny to which we are born, and 
which may be written down in that terrible 
word — Forever ? 

Let those who will then, sneer at what in 
their wisdom they call untruth — at what is 
false, because it has no material presence : this 
does not create falsity ; would to Heaven that 
it did ! 



3Bi2 a CiVi (Bratc 



And yet if there was actual, material truth, 
superadded to reverie, would such objectors 
sympathize the more ? No ! a thousand times, 
no; the heart that has no sympathy with 
thoughts and feelings that scorch the soul, is 
dead also — whatever its mocking tears, and 
gestures may say — to a coffin or a grave I 

Let them pass, and we will come back to 
these cherished letters. 

A mother, who has lost a child, has, she says, 
shed a tear — not one, but many — over the dead 
boy's coldness. And another, who has not 
lost, but who trembles lest she lose, has found 
the words failing as she read, and a dim, sor- 
row-borne mist, spreading over the page. 

Another, yet rejoicing in all those family 
ties, that make life a charm, has listened 
nervously to careful reading, until the husband 
is called home, and the coffin is in the house — 
" Stop !" — she says ; and a gush of tears tells the 
rest. 

Yet the cold critic wmII say — " It was art- 
fully done." A curse on him I — it was not art : 
it was nature. 

Another, a young, fresh, healthful 
mind- has sppn snmp*^^''- 



»^ a Citi? (Brate 



albeit so weak — of truth ; and has kindly be- 
lieved that it must be earnest. Ay, indeed is 
it, fair, and generous one — earnest as life and 
hope ! Who, indeed, with a heart at all, that 
has not yet slipped away irreparably, and for- 
ever from the shores of youth — from that fairy- 
land which young enthusiasm creates, and over 
which bright dreams hover — but knows it to 
be real ? And so such things will be real, till 
hopes are dashed, and death is come. 

Another, a father, has laid down the book 
in tears. 

God bless them all! How far better 

this, than the cold praise of newspaper para- 
graphs, or the critically contrived approval of 
colder friends ! 

Let me gather up these letters, carefully — 
to be read when the heart is faint, and sick of 
all that there is unreal, and selfish in the world. 
Let me tie them together, with a new and 
longer bit of ribbon — not by a love-knot, that 
is t<x) hard — but by an easy-slipping knot, that 
so I may get at them the better. And now, 
they are all together, a snug packet, and we 
will label them, not sentimentally (I pity the 
one who thinks it!), but earnestlv, and in 



3Bi^ a Citp (3rate 



the best meaning of the term — Souvenirs du 

C(EUR. 

Thanks to my first reverie, which has added 
to such a treasure ! 

And now to my Second Reverie. 

I am no longer in the country. The fields, 
the trees, the brooks are far away from me, 
and yet they are very present. A letter 
from my tenant — how different from those 
other letters ! — lies upon my table, telling me 
what fields he has broken up for the autumn 
grain, and how many beeves he is fattening, 
and how the potatoes are turning out. 

But I am in a garret of the city. From my 
window I look over a mass of crowded house- 
tops — moralizing often upon the scene, but in 
a strain too long, and somber to be set down 
here. In place of the wide country chimney, 
with its iron fire-dogs, is a snug grate, where 
the maid makes me a fire in the morning, and 
rekindles it in the afternoon. 

I am usually fairly seated in my chair — a 
cozily stuffed office chair — by five or six o'clock 
of the evening. The fire has been newly made, 
perhaps an hour before: first, the mai«l ^^— 
a withe of naner in **- 



3Bi2 a Citi? (Bratc 



then a stick or two of pine-wood, and after it 
a bod of Liverpool coal ; so that by tbe time I 
am seated for tbe evening, tbe sea-coal is fairly 
in a blaze. 

Wben tbis bas sunk to a level witb the 
second bar of tbe grate, tbe maid replenishes 
it witb a bod of anthracite ; and I sit musing 
and reading, while tbe new coal warms and 
kindles — not leaving my place, until it has 
sunk to the third bar of the grate, which marks 
my bedtime. 

I love these accidental measures of tbe hours, 
which belong to you, and your life, and not to 
tbe world. A watch is no more the measure 
of your time, than of the time of your neigh- 
bors ; a church clock is as public, and vulgar as 
a church-warden. I would as soon think of 
hiring the parish sexton to make my bed, as to 
regulate my time by the parish clock. 

A shadow that the sun casts upon your 
carpet, or a streak of light on the slated roof 
yonder, or the burning of your fire, are pleasant 
time-keepers full of presence, full of companion- 
ship, and full of the warning — time is passing ! 

In the summer season I have even measured 
my reading, and my night-watch, by the burn- 



36^ a Citi^ (3rate 



ing of a taper ; and I have scratched upon the 
handle to the little bronze taper-holder, that 
meaning passage of the New Testament — No^ 
yap epxerat — the night cometli ! 

But I must get upon my reverie : it was a 
drizzly evening; I had worked hard during 
the day, and had drawn my boots — thrust my 
feet into slippers — thrown on a Turkish loose 
dress, and Greek cap — souvenirs to me of other 
times, and other places, and sat watching the 
lively, uncertain yellow play of the bituminous 
flame. 



£p a Citis 6rate 



SEA^OAL 

It is like a flirt — mused I ; lively, uncertain, 
bright-colored, waving here and there, melting 
the coal into black shapeless mass, making foul, 
sooty smoke, and pasty, trashy residuum! 
Yet withal — pleasantly sparkling, dancing, 
prettily waving, and leaping like a roebuck 
from point to point. 

How like a flirt ! And yet is not this toss- 
ing caprice of girlhood, to which I liken my 
sea-coal flame, a native play of life, and be- 
longing by nature to the play-time of life ? Is 
it not a sort of essential fire-kindling to the 
weightier and truer passions — even as Jenny 
puts the soft coal first, the better to kindle the 
anthracite ? Is it not a sort of necessary con- 
sumption of young vapors, which float in the 
soul, and which is left thereafter the purer ? 
Is there not a stage somewhere in every man's 
youth, for just such waving, idle, heart-blaze, 



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which means nothing, yet which must be got 
over? 

Lamartine says, somewhere, very prettily, 
that there is more of quick running sap, and 
floating shade in a young tree; but more of 
fire in the heart of a sturdy oak — II y a plies 
de seve folic et d^omhre flottante dans lea 
jeunes plants de la foret; il y a plus de feu 
dans le vieux cosur du chine. 

Is Lamartine playing off his prettiness of 
expression, dressing up with his poetry — mak- 
ing a good conscience against the ghost of 
some accusing Graziella, or is there truth in 
the matter ? 

A man who has seen sixty years, whether 
widower or bachelor, may well put such senti- 
ment into words : it feeds his wasted heart 
with hope ; it renews the exultation of youth 
by the pleasantest of equivocation, and the 
most charming of self-confidence. But after 
all, is it not true ? Is not the heart like new 
blossoming field-plants, whose first flowers are 
half-formed, one-sided perhaps, but by and by, 
in maturity of season, putting out wholesome, 
well-formed blossoms that will hold their 
leaves long and bravely ? 



£l? a Citis 6rate 



Bulwer in bis story of the Caxtons, has 
counted first heart-flights mere fancy -passages 
— a dalliance with the breezes of love, which 
pass, and leave healthful heart appetite. Half 
the reading world has read the story of Tre- 
vanion and Pisistratus. But Bulwer is — past ; 
bis heart-life is used up — epuise. Such a man 
cau very safely rant about the cool judgment 
of after years. 

Where does Shakespeare put the unripe 
heart-age ? All of it before the ambition, that 
alone makes the hero-soul. The Shakespeare 
man " sighs like a furnace," before he stretches 
his arm to achieve the " bauble, reputation." 

Yet Shakespeare has meted a soul-love, 
mature and ripe, without any young furnace 
sighs to Desdemona and Othello. Cordelia, 
the sweetest of his play creations, loves with- 
out any of the mawkish matter, which makes 
the whining love of a Juliet. And Florizel in 
the Winter's Tale, says to Perdita in the true 
spirit of a most sound heart : 

My desires 
Run uot l>efore mine honor, nor my wishes 
Burn hotter than my faith. 

How is it with Hector and Andromache? 



H^ a CiVi 6ratc 



no sea-coal blaze, but one that is constant, en- 
during, pervading: a pair of hearts full of 
esteem, and best love — good, honest, and 
sound. 

Look now at Adam and Eve, in God's pres- 
ence, with Milton for showman. Shall we 
quote by this sparkling blaze, a gem from the 
Paradise Lost ? We will hum it to ourselves 
—what Raphael sings to Adam — a .classic 
song. 

Him, serve and fear ! 

Of other creatures, as Him pleases best 
Wherever placed, let Him dispose ; joy thoa 
In what he gives to thee, this Paradise 
And thy fair eve ! 



And again : 



£l^ a Citp 6rate 



There is a degree of moisture about the sea- 
coal flame, which with the most earnest of my 
musing, I find it impossible to attach to that 
idea of a waving sparkling heart which my 
fire suggests. A damp heart must be a foul 
thing to be sure. But whoever heard of one ? 

Wordsworth somewhere in the Excursion 
says: 

The good die first, 
And they whoee hearts are drjf as sammer dost 
Bom to the socket ! 

What, in the name of Rydal Mount, is a dry 
heart ? A dusty one, I can conceive of : a 
bachelor's heart must be somewhat dusty, as 
he nears the sixtieth summer of his pilgrimage 
— and hung over with cobwebs, in which sit 
such watchful gray old spiders as avarice, and 
selfishness, forever on the lookout for such 
bottle-green flies as lust. 

" I will never " — said I — griping at the 
elbows of my chair — "live a bachelor till 
sixty — never, so surely as there is hope in man, 
or charity in woman, or faith in both ! " 

And with that thought, my heart leaped 
about in playful coruscations, even like the 



3Bp a Citi? 6rate 



flame of the sea-coal — rising, and wrapping 
round old and tender memories, and images 
that were present to me — trying to cling, and 
yet no sooner fastened, than oflf — dancing 
again, riotous in its exultation — a succession of 
heart-sparkles, blazing, and going out ! 

And is there not — mused I — a portion of 

this world, forever blazing in just such lively 
sparkles, waving here and there as the air- 



£p a Citi 6rate 



it is a vain sea-coal sparkling, which will count 
no good. The world is made of much hard, 
flinty substance, against which your better, 
and holier thoughts will be striking fire — see 
to it, that the sparks do not burn you ! 

But what a happy, careless life belongs to 
this bachelorhood, in which you may strike 
out boldly right and left ! Your heart is not 
bound to another which may be full of only 
sickly vapors of feeling : nor is it frozen to a 
cold, man's heart under a silk boilice — know- 
ing nothing of tenderness but the name, to 
prate of; and nothing of soul-confidence, but 
clumsy confession. And if in your careless 
out-goings of feeling, you get here, only a 
little lip vapidity in return ; be sure that you 
will find, elsewhere, a true heart utterance. 
This last you will cherish in your inner soul — 
a nucleus for a new group of aflfections ; and 
the other will pass with a whiflf of your cigar. 

Or if your feelings are touched, struck, hurt, 
who is the wiser, or the worse, but you only ? 
And have you not the whole skein of your 
heart-life in your own fingers to wind, or un- 
wind, in what shape you please? Shake it, or 
twine it, or tangle it, by the light of your fire. 



»i^ a Gitp 6ratc 



as you fancy best. He is a weak man who 
cannot twist and weave the threads of his feel- 
ing — however fine, however tangled, however 
strained, or however strong — into the great 
cable of purpose, by which he lies moored to 



£l? a Citp 6rate 



success, and be forewarned of rocks against 
which you must surely smite — read Boling- 
broke — run over the letters of Lyttleton; read, 
and think of what you read, in the cracking 
lines of Kochefoucauld. How he sums us up 
in his stinging words ! — how he puts the scalpel 
between the nerves — yet he never hurts ; for 
he is dissecting dead matter. 

If you are in a genial, careless mood, who is 
better than such extemporizers of feeling and 
nature — good-hearted fellows — as Sterne and 
Fielding ? 

And then again, there are Milton and Isaiah, 
to lift up one's soul until it touches cloud-land, 
and you wander with their guidance, on swift 
feet, to the very gates of heaven. 

But this sparkling sensibility to one strug- 
gling under infirmity, or with grief or poverty, 
is very dreadful. The soul is too nicely and 
keenly hinged to be wrenched without mis- 
chief. IIow it shrinks, like a hurt child, from 
all that is vulgar, harsh, and crude ! Alas, for 
such a man ! — he will be buffeted, from begin- 
ning to end ; his life will be a sea of troubles. 
The poor victim of his own quick spirit he 
wanders with a great shield of doubt hung be- 



£l^ a <Lit^ 6rate 



£l^ a CiVi 6rate 



of belief, where others see none. That deli- 
cate organization is a curse to a man : and yet, 
poor fool, he does not see where his cure lies ; 
he wonders at his griefs, and has never reckoned 
with himself their source. He studies others, 
without studying himself. He eats the leaves 
that sicken, and never plucks up the root that 
will cure. 

With a woman it is worse; with her, this 
delicate susceptibility is like a frail flower, that 
quivers at every rough blast of heaven ; her 
own delicacy wounds her ; her highest charm 
is perverted to a curse. 

She listens with fear; she reads with trem- 
bling ; she looks with dread. Her sympathies 
give a tone, like the harp of ^Eolus, to the 
slightest breath. Her sensibility lights up, 
and quivers and falls, like the flame of a sea- 
coal fire. 

If she loves (and may not a bachelor reason 
on this daintiest of topics), her love is a gush- 
ing, wavy flame, lit up with hope, that has only 
a little kindling matter to light it; and this 
soon burns out. Yet intense sensibility will 
persuade her that the flame still scorches. She 
will mistake the annoyance of affection unre- 



£p a Citp 6rate 



quited for the sting of a passion, that s 
fancies still burns. She does not look de 
enough to see that the passion is gone, and t 
shocked sensitiveness emits only faint, yello 
isli sparkles in its place; her high-wroug 
organization makes those sparks seem a ve 
table flame. 



£p a CiPi 6rate 



Ler abjure such poets as Cowper, or Byron, or 
even Wordsworth ; and if she must poetize, let 
her lay her mind to such manly verse as 
Pope's, or to such sound and ringing organry 
as Comus. 

My fire was getting dull, and I thrust in the 
poker : it started up on the instant into a hun- 
dred little angry tongues of flame. 

Just so — thought I — the over-sensitive 

heart once cruelly disturbed, will fling out a 
score of flaming passions, darting here and 
darting there — half-smoke, half-flame — love 
and hate— canker and joy — wild in its mad- 
ness, not knowing whither its sparks are flying. 
Once break roughly upon the affections, or 
even the fancied affections of such a soul, and 
you breed a tornado of maddened action — a 
whirlwind of fire that hisses, and sends out 
jets of wild, impulsive combustion, that make 
the bystanders — even those most friendly — 
stand aloof until the storm is past. 

But this is not all the dashing flame of my 
sea-coal suggests. 

How like a flirt ! mused I again, recur- 
ring to my first thought — so lively, yet uncer- 
tain ; so bright yet so flickering ! Your true 



"B^ a <Lit^ (Brate 



£p a Citi 6rate 



She smiles like a wizard, and jingles it with 
a laugh, such as tolled the poor home-bound 
Ulysses to the Circean bower. She has a cast 
of the head, apt and artful as the most dexter- 
ous cast of the best trout-killing rod. Her 
words sparkle, and flow hurriedly, and with 
the prettiest doubleness of meaning. Natural- 
ness she copies, and she scorns. She accuses 
herself of a single expression or regard, which 
nature prompts. She prides herself on her 
schooling. She measures her wit by the tri- 
umphs of her art; she chuckles over her own 
falsity to herself. And if by chance her soul 
— such germ as is left of it — betrays her into 
untoward confidence, she condemns herself, as 
if she had committed crime. 

She is always gay, because she has no depth 
of feeling to be stirred. The brook that runs 
shallow over hard pebbly bottom always rustles. 
She is light-hearted, because her heart floats in 
sparkles — like my sea-coal fire. She counts on 
marriage, not as the great absorbent of a 
heartVlove, and life, but as a happy, feasible, 
and orderly conventionality, to be played 
with, and kept at distance, and finally to 
be accepted as a cover for the faint and taw- 



1B^ a Citp 6rate 



dry sparkles of an old and cherished heartless- 
ness. 

She will not pine under any regrets, because 
she has no appreciation of any loss : she will 
not chafe at indifference, because it is her art ; 
she will not be worried with jealousies, because 
she is ignorant of love. With no conception 
of the soul in its strength and fulness, she sees 
no lack of its demands. A thrill, she does not 
know ; a passion, she cannot imagine ; joy is a 
name ; grief is another ; and life, with its crowd- 
ing scenes of love, and bitterness, is a play upon 



1B^ a Citi? 6rate 



had he entered upon the tangled life of the 
city, before he met with a sparkling face and an 
airy step, that stirred something in poor Ned, 
that he had never felt before. With him, to 
feel was to act. He was not one to be despised ; 
for notwithstanding he wore a country air, and 
the awkwardness of a man who has yet the 
bienseance of social life before him, he had the 
soul, the courage, and the talent of a strong 
man. Little gifted in the knowledge of face- 
play, he easily mistook those coy manoeuvers 
of a sparkling heart, for something kindred to 
his own true emotions. 

She was proud of the attentions of a man 
who carried a mind in his brain ; and flattered 
poor Ned almost into servility. Ned had no 
friends to counsel him ; or if he had them, his 
impulses would have blinded him. Never was 
dodger more artful at the Olympic Games than 
the Peggy of Ned's heart-affection. He was 
charmed, beguiled, entranced. 

When Ned spoke of love, she staved it off 
with the prettiest of sly looks that only be- 
wildered him the more. A charming creature 
to be sure ; coy as a dove ! 

So he went on, poor fool, until one day — he 




/•.,;.,•• 



1B^ a Citp (5rate 



told me of it with the blood mounting to his 
temples, and his eye shooting flame — he suf- 
fered his feelings to run out in passionate 
avowal — entreaty — everything. She gave a 
pleasant, noisy laugh, and manifested — such 
pretty surprise ! 

He was looking for the intense glow of 
passion; and lo, there was nothing but the 
shifting sparkle of a sea-coal flame. 

I wrote him a letter of condolence — for I 
was his senior by a year ; " My dear fellow," 
said I, " diet yourself ; you can find greens at 
the up-town market ; eat a little fish with your 
dinner; abstain from heating drinks: don't put 
too much butter to your cauliflower ; read one 
of Jeremy Taylor's sermons, and translate all 
the quotations at sight ; run carefully over that 
exquisite picture of Geo. Dandin in your Mo- 
lidre, and my word for it, in a week you will be 



'B^ a Citp 6rate 



that their baby, not three months old, was as 
bright as a spot of June day sunshine on the 
grass. 

What a tender, delicate, loving wife^ — 

mused I — such flashing, flaming flirt must in 
the end make ; the prostitute of fashion ; the 
bauble of fifty hearts idle as hers ; the shifting 
make-piece of a stage scene ; the actress, now 
in peasant, and now in princely petticoats I 
How it would cheer an honest soul to call her 
— his 1 What a culmination of bis heart-life : 
what a rich dream-land to be realized I 

Bah ! and I thrust the poker into the 

clotted mass of fading coal — just such, and so 
worthless is the used heart of a city flirt ; just 
so the incessant sparkle of her life, and fritter- 
ing passions, fuses all that is sound and com- 
bustible, into black, soothy, shapeless residuum. 

When I marry a flirt, I will buy second-hand 
clotbes of the Jews. 

Still — mused I — as the flame danced 

again — there is a distinction between coquetry 
and flirtation. 

A coquette sparkles, but it is more the 
sparkle of a harmless and pretty vanit}^ than 
of calculation. It is the play of humors in the 



1B^ a Citi? 6rate 



blood, and not the play of purpose at the heart. 
It will flicker around a true soul like the blaze 
around an omelette au rhum^ leaving the kernel 
sounder and warmer. 

Coquetry, with all its pranks and teasings, 
makes the spice to your dinner — the mulled 
wine to your supper. It will drive you to 
desperation, only to bring you back hotter to 
the fray. Who would boast a victory that 
cost no strategy, and no careful disposition of 
the forces ? Who would bulletin such suc- 
cess as ray Uncle Toby's, in the back garden, 
with only the Corporal Trim for assailant? 
But let a man be very sure that the city is 
worth the siege 1 

Coquetry whets the appetite; flirtation de- 
praves it. Coquetry is the thorn that guards 
the rose — easily trimmed off when once 
plucked. Flirtation is like the slime on water- 
plants, making them hard to handle, and when 
caught, only to be cherished in slimy waters. 

And so, with my eye clinging to the flicker- 
ing blaze, I see in my reverie, a bright one 
dancing before me, with sparkling, coquettish 
smile, teasing me with the prettiest graces in 
the world — and I grow maddened between 
31 



1B^ a Citi? 6rate 



hope and fear, and still watch with my whole 
soul in my eyes ; and see her features by and 
by relax to pity, as a gleam of sensibility 
comes stealing over her spirit — and then to a 
kindly, feeling regard : presently she ap- 
proaches — a coy and doubtful approach — and 
throws back the ringlets that lie over her 
cheek, and lays her hand — a little bit of 
white hand — timidly upon my strong fingers 
— and turns her head daintily to one side — 
and looks up in my eyes, as they rest on 
the playing blaze; and my fingers close fast 
and passionately over that little hand, like 
a swift night-cloud shrouding the pale tips of 
Dian — and my eyes draw nearer and nearer to 
those blue, laughing, pitying, teasing eyes, and 
my arm clasps round that shadowy form — and 
my lips feel a warm breath — growing warmer 

and warmer 

Just here the maid comes in, throws upon the 
fire a panful of anthracite, and my sparkling 
sea-coal reverie is ended. 



1B^ a Citp ©rate 



ANTHRACITE 

It does not burn freely, so I put on the 
blower. Quaint and good-natured Xavier de 
Maistre * would have made, I dare say, a pretty 
epilogue about a sheet-iron blower; but I 
cannot. 

I try to bring back the image that belonged 
to the lingering bituminous flame, but with my 
eyes on that dark blower — how can I ? 

It is the black curtain of destiny which drops 
down before our brightest dreams. How often 
the phantoms of joy regale us, and dance be- 
fore us — golden-winged, angel-faced, heart- 
warming, and make an Elysium in which the 
dreaming soul bathes, and feels translated to 
another existence ; and then — sudden as night, 
or a cloud — a word, a step, a thought, a mem- 
ory will chase them away, like scared deer 
vanishing over a gray horizon of moor-land ! 

I know not justly, if it be a weakness or a 

' Voyage autour de Ma Cbambre. 
33 



1B^ a Citi? 6rate 



siu to create these phantoms that we love, and 
to group them into a paradise — soul-created. 
But if it is a sin, it is a sweet and enchanting 
sin ; and if it is a weakness, it is a strong and 
stirring weakness. If this heart is sick of the 
falsities that meet it at every hand, and is 
eager to spend that power which nature has 
ribbed it with, on some object worthy of its 
fulness and depth — shall it not feel a rich re- 
lief — nay more, an exercise in keeping with 
its end, if it flow out — strong as a tempest, 
wild as a rushing river, upon those ideal crea- 
tions, which imagination invents, and which 
are tempered by our best sense of beauty, 
purity, and grace? 

Unless, do you say ? Ay, it is as use- 
less as the pleasure of looking hour upon 
hour, over bright landscapes ; it is as useless 
as the rapt enjoyment of listening with heart 
full and eyes brimming, to such music as the 
Miserere, at Kome; it is as useless as the 
ecstasy of kindling your soul into fervor and 
love, and madness, over pages that reek with 
genius. 

There are indeed base-molded souls who 
know nothing of this ; they laugh ; they sneer ; 



1B^ a Citp 6rate 



they even affect to pity. Just so the Huns 
under the avenging Attila, who had been 
used to foul cookery and steaks stewed under 
their saddles, laughed brutally at the spiced 
banquets of an Apicius ! 

No, this phantom-making is no sin ; or 

if it be, it is sinning with a soul so full, so 
earnest, that it can cry to Heaven cheerily, 
and sure of a gracious heairing—peccavi — 
inisericorde ! 

But my fire is in a glow, a pleasant glow, 
throwing a tranquil, steady light to the 
farthest corner of my garret. How unlike it 
is, to the flashing play of the sea-coal ! — un- 
like as an unsteady, uncertain-working heart 
to the true and earnest constancy of one 
cheerful and right. 

After all, thought I, give me such a heart; 
not bent on vanities, not blazing too sharp with 
sensibilities, not throwing out coquettish jets 
of flame, not wavering, and meaningless w^ith 
pretended warmth, but open, glowing and 
strong. Its dark shades and angles it may 
have ; for what is a soul worth that does not 
take a slaty tinge from those griefs that chill 
the blood? Yet still the tire is gleaming; 



1B^ a Citi? 6rate 



you see it in the crevices ; and anon it will 
give radiance to the whole mass. 

It hurts the eyes, this fire; and I draw 

up a screen painted over with rough, but 
graceful figures. 

The true heart wears always the veil of 
modesty (not of prudery, which is a dingy, 
iron, repulsive screen). It will not allow itself 
to be looked on too near — ^it might scorch; 
but through the veil you feel the warmth; and 
through the pretty figures that modesty will 
robe itself in, you can see all the while the 
golden outlines, and by that token, you know 
that it is glowing and burning with a pure and 
steady flame. 

With such a heart the mind fuses naturally — 
a holy and heated fusion ; they work together 
like twins-born. With such a heart, as Raphael 
says to Adam : 

Love hath his seat 
In reason, and is judicious. 

But let me distinguish this heart from your 
clay-cold, lukewarm, half-hearted soul ; con- 
siderate, because ignorant; judicious, because 



1B^ a Citp 6rate 



possessed of no latent fires that need a curb; 
prudish, because with no warm blood to tempt. 
This sort of soul may pass scatheless through 
the fiery furnace of life; strong, only in its 
weakness; pure, because of its failings; and 
good, only by negation. It may triumph over 
love, and sin, and death ; but it will be a 
triumph of the beast, which has neither 
passions to subdue, nor energy to attack, or 
hope to quench. 

Let us come back to the steady and earnest 



'B^ a Citi? 6rate 



consciously, and from force of deep soul habit, 
you take all your observations. It is meek 
and quiet ; but it is full, as a spring that gushes 
in flood; an Aphrodite and a Mercury — a 
Vaucluse and a Clitumnus. 

The face is an angel face; no matter for 
curious lines of beauty ; no matter for popular 
talk of prettiness ; no matter for its angles, or 
its proportions : no matter for its color or its 
form — the soul is there, illuminating every 
feature, burnishing every point, hallowing 
every surface. It tells of honesty, sincerity, 
and worth ; it tells of truth and virtue — and 
you clasp the image to your heart, as the re- 
ceived ideal of your fondest dreams. 

The figure may be this or that, it may be 
tall or short, it matters nothing — the heart is 
there. The talk may be soft or low, serious or 
piquant — a free and honest soul is warming 
and softening it all. As you speak, it speaks 
back again ; as you think, it thinks again (not 
in conjunction, but in the same sign of the 
Zodiac) ; as you love, it loves in return. 

It is the heart for a sister, and happy is 

the man who can claim such ! The warmth 
that lies in it is not only generous, but re- 



1B^ a Citp 6rate 



ligious, genial, devotional, tender, self-sacrific- 
ing, and looking heavenward. 

A man without some sort of religion, is at 
best a poor reprobate, the football of destiny, 
with no tie linking hira to infinity, and the 
wondrous eternity that is begun with him ; 
but a woman without it, is even worse — a 
flame without heat, a rainbow without color, 
a flower without perfume 1 

A man may in some sort tie his frail hopes 
and honors, with weak, shifting ground-tackle 
to business, or to the world ; but a woman 
without that anchor which they call faith, is 
adrift, and a- wreck ! A man may clumsily 
contrive a kind of moral responsibility, out of 
his relations to mankind ; but a woman in her 
comparatively isolated sphere, where affection 
and not purpose is the controlling motive, can 
find no basis for any system of right action, 
but that of spiritual faith. 

A man may craze his thought and his brain, 
to trustfulness in such poor harborage as fame 
and reputation may stretch before him ; but a 
woman — where can she put her hope in storms, 
if not in Heaven ? 

And that sweet trustfulness — that abiding 



'B^ a Citi? (3rate 



love — that enduring hope, mellowing every 
page and scene of life, lighting them with pleas- 
antest radiance, when the world-storms break 
like an army with smoking cannon — what can 
bestow it all, but a holy soul-tie to what is 
above the storms, and to what is stronger than 
an army with cannon ? Who that has enjoyed 
the counsel and the love of a Christian mother, 
but will echo the thought with energy, and 
hallow it with a tear? — et moiyje pleura I 

My fire is now a mass of red-hot coal. The 
whole atmosphere of my room is warm. The 
heat that with its glow can light up, and warm 
a garret with loose casements and shattered 
roof, is capable of the best love — domestic 
love. I draw farther off, and the images upon 
the screen change. The warmth, the hour, 
the quiet, create a home feeling; and that 
feeling, quick as lightning, has stolen from the 
world of fancy (a Promethean theft), a home 
object, about which my musings go on to drape 
themselves in luxurious reverie. 

There she sits, by the corner of the fire, 

in a neat home dress, of sober, yet most adorn- 
ing color. A little bit of lace ruffle is gath- 
ered about the neck, by a blue ribbon; and 



Xl? a Citi? Ovate 



the ends of the ribbon are crossed under the 
dimpling chin, and are fastened neatly by a 
simple, unpretending brooch — your gift. The 
arm, a pretty taper arm, lies over the carved 
elbow of the oaken chair ; the hand, white and 
delicate, sustains a little home volume that 
hangs from her fingers. The forefinger is be- 
tween the leaves, and the others lie in relief 
upon the dark embossed cover. She repeats 
in a silver voice a line that has attracted her 
fancy ; and you listen — or at any rate, you seem 
to listen — with your eyes now on the lips, now 
on the forehead, and now on the finger, where, 
glitters like a star, the marriage ring — little 
gold band, at which she does not chafe, that 
tells you — she is yours ! 

AVeak testimonial, if that were all thnt 

told it! The eye, the voice, the look, the 
heart, tells you stronger and better, that she 
is yours. And a feeling within, where it lies 
you know not, and whence it comes you know 
not, but sweeping over heart and brain, like a 
fire- flood, tells you too, that you are hers! 
Irremediably bound as Massinger's Hortensio ; 



'B^ a Citi? Ovutc 



it ; and death is coming near to subdue it ; but 
still it is the same. 

The fingers are thinner ; the face has lines 
of care, and sorrow, crossing each other in a 
web-work, that makes the golden tissue of hu- 
manity. But the heart is fond, and steady ; it 
is the same dear heart, the same self-sacrificing 
heart, warming, like a fire, all around it. Af- 
fliction has tempered joy ; and joy adorned 
affliction. Life and all its troubles have be- 
come distilled into an holy incense, rising ever 
from your fireside — an offering to your house- 
hold gods. 

Your dreams of reputation, your swift de- 
termination, your impulsive pride, your deep 
uttered vows to win a name, have all sobered 
into affection — have all blended into that glow 
of feeling, which finds its center, and hope, and 
joy in Home. From my soul I pity him whose 
soul does not leap at the mere utterance of that 
name. 

A home ! — it is the bright, blessed, adorable 
phantom which sits highest on the sunny 
horizon that girdeth life! When shall it be 
reached ? When shall it cease to be a glittering 
day-dream, and become fully and fairly yours i 



"B^ a CiVi (3rate 



It is not the house, though that may have 
its charms ; nor the fields carefully tilled, and 
streaked with your own footpaths — nor the 
trees, though their shadow be to you like that 
of a great rock in a weary land — nor yet is it 
the fireside, with its sweet blaze-play — nor the 
pictures which tell of loved ones, nor the 
cherished books — but more far than all these 
— it is the Presence. The Lares of your 
worship are there ; the altar of your confidence 
there ; the end of your worldly faith is there ; 
and adorning it all, and sending your blood in 
passionate flow, is the ecstasy of the convic- 
tion, that there at least you are beloved ; that 
there you are understood ; that there your 
errors will meet ever with gentlest forgive- 
ness : that there your troubles will be smiled 
away ; that there you may unburden your soul, 
fearless of harsh, unsympathizing ears; and 
that there you may be entirely and joyfully — 



Xl? a Citi? (3rate 



That image by the fireside, calm, loving, 

joyful, is there still : it goes not, however my 
spirit tosses, because my wish, and every will, 
keep it there, unerring. 

The fire shows through the screen, yellow 
and warm, as a harvest sun. It is in its best 
age, and that age is ripeness. 

A ripe heart! — now I know what Words- 
worth meant, when he said : 

The good die first, 
Aud thej whose hearts are dry as summer dust, 
Bum to the socket ! 

The town clock is striking midnight. The 
cold of the night-wind is urging its way in at 
the door and window-crevice; the fire has sunk 
almost to the third bar of the grate. Still my 
dream tires not, but wraps fondly round that 
image — now in the far off, chilling mists of 
age, growing sainted. Love has blended into 
reverence ; passion has subsided into joyous 
content. 

And what if age comes, said I, in a new 

flush of excitation — what else proves the wine ? 
What else gives inner strength, and knowl- 
edge, and a steady pilot-hand, to steer your 



1B^ a CiVi (Brate 



boat out bodily upon that shoreless sea, where 
the river of life is running? Let the white 
ashes gather ; let the silver hair lie, where lay 
the auburn; let the eye gleam farther back, 
and dimmer ; it is but retreating towards the 
pure sky-depths, an usher to the land where 



£l? a Citp Ovutc 



yoa are also in the death chamber of care. 
The world seems sliding backward ; and hope 
and you are sliding forward. The clouds, the 
agonies, the vain expectancies, the braggart 
noise, and fears, now vanish behind the curtain 
of the past, and of the night. They roll from 
your soul like a load. 

In the dimness of what seems the ending 
present, you reach out your prayerful hands 
towards that boundless future, where God's 
eye lifts over the horizon, like sunrise on the 
ocean. Do you recognize it as an earnest of 
something better ? Aye, if the heart has been 
pure, and steady — burning like my fire — it 
has learned it without seeming to learn. Faith 
has grown upon it, as the blossom grows upon 
the bud, or the flower upon the slow-lifting 
stalk. 

Cares cannot come into the dream-land where 
I live. They sink with the dying street noise, 
and vanish with the embers of my fire. Even 
ambition, with its hot and shifting flame, is all 
gone out. The heart in the dimness of the 
fading fire-glow is all itself. The memory of 
what good things have come over it in the 
troubled youth-life, bear it up ; and hope and 



'B^ a CiVi (3rate 



faith bear it on. There is no extravagant 
pulse-glow ; there is no mad fever of the brain ; 
but only the soul, forgetting — for once— all^ 
save its destinies and its capacities for good. 
And it mounts higher and higher on these 
wings of thought; and hope burns stronger 
and stronger out of the ashes of decaying life, 
until the sharp edge of the grave seems but a 
foot-scraper at the wicket of Elysium ! 

But what is paper; and what are words? 
Vain things! The soul leaves them behind; 
the pen staggers like a starveling cripple ; and 
your heart is leaving it, a whole length of the 
life-course behind. The soul's mortal long- 
ings — its poor baffled hopes, are dim now in 
the light of those infinite longings, which 
spread over it, soft and holy as day-dawn. 
Eternity has stretched a corner of its mantle 
towards you, and the breath of its waving 
fringe is like a gale of Araby. 

A little rumbling, and a last plunge of the 
cinders within my grate, startled me, and 
dragged back my fancy from my flower chase, 
beyond the Phlegethon, to the white ashes, 
that were now thick all over the darkened 



£l? a CiVi (3rate 



And tbb — mused I — is only a bachelor- 
dream about a pure, and loving heart! And 
to-morrow comes cankerous life again — is it 
wished for? Or if not wished for, is the not 
wishing, wicked? 

Will dreams satisfy, reach high as they can ? 
Are we not after all poor groveling mortals, 
tied to earth, and Uj each other ; are there not 
symfiathies, and hopes, and affections which 
can only find their issue, and blessing, in fel- 
low absorption ? Does not the heart, steady, 
and pure as it may be, and mounting on soul 
flights often as it dare, want a human sympa- 
thy, |>erfectly indulged, to make it healthful? 
Is there not a fount of love for this world, as 
there is a fount of love for the other ? Is there 
not a certain store of tenderness, cooped in 
this heart, which must, and will be lavished, 
before the end comes? Does it not plead 
with tijc judgment, and make issue with pru- 
dencfj, year after year ? Does it not dog your 
steps all through your social pilgrimage, set- 
ting up its claims in forms fresh, and odorous 
as new-blown heath bells, saying — come away 
from the heartless, the factitious, the vain, and 
measure your heart not by its constraints, but 



'B^ a Citi? (State 



by its fulness, and by its depth! let it run, 
and be joyous ! 

Is there no demon that comes to your harsh 
night-dreams, like a taunting fiend, whispering 
— be satisfied ; keep your heart from running 
over ; bridle those affections ; there is nothing 
worth loving ? 

Does not some sweet being hover over your 
spirit of reverie like a beckoning angel, 
crowned with halo, saying — hope on, hope 
ever ; the heart and I are kindred ; our mis- 
sion will be fulfilled ; nature shall accomplish 
its purpose ; the soul shall have its paradise ? 

1 threw myself upon my bed : and as 

my thoughts ran over the definite, sharp busi- 
ness of the morrow, my reverie, and its glow- 
ing images, that made my heart bound, swept 
away, like those fleecy rain clouds of August, 
on which the sun paints rainbows — driving 
southward, by the cool, rising wind from the 



THIRD REVERIE 



Over His Cigar 

I DO not believe that there was ever an 
Aunt Tabithy who could abide cigars. My 
Aunt Tabithy hated them with a peculiar 
hatred. She was not only insensible to the 
rich flavor of a fresh rolling volume of smoke, 
but she could not so much as tolerate the sight 
of the rich russet color of an Havana-labeled 
box. It put her out of all conceit with Guava 
jelly, to find it advertised in the same tongue, 
and with the same Cuban coarseness of design. 

She could see no good in a cigar. 

" But by your leave, my aunt," said I to her, 
the other morning — "there is very much that 
is nfood in a cigar." 

My aunt, who was sweeping, tossed her 
head, and with it, her curls — done up in paper. 

" It is a very excellent matter," continued I, 



®ver 1)i0 Cidar 



rital companion ; and a comforter " and 

topped to puff. 

' You know it is a filthy abomination," said 

' aunt — " and you ought to be " and she 

pped to put up one of her curls, which with 
) energy of her gesticulation, had fallen out 
its place. 

'^ It suggests quiet thoughts "—continued I 
^ and makes a man meditative ; and gives a 
rrent to his habits of contemplation — as I 
show you," said I, warming with the 
9me. 
My aunt, still fingering her papers— with 

pin in her mouth — ^gave a most incredulous 
rug. 
"Aunt Tabithy" — said I, and gave two 

three violent, consecutive puflfs — "Aunt 
ibithy, I can make up such a series of reflec- 
ns out of my cigar, as would do your heart 
od to listen to I " 

"About what, pray?" said my aunt, con- 
nptuously. 

" About love," said I, " which is easy enough 
[hted, but wants constancy to keep it in a 

w — or about matrimony, which has a great 

l1 of fire in the beginning, but it is a fire 




** About what, pray ?" said my aum. **About Love,** said I. 



Qvcv 1)i0 Cigar 



that consumes all that feeds the blaze — or 
about life," continued I, earnestly — " which at 
the first is fresh and odorous, but ends shortly 
in a withered cinder, that is fit only for the 
ground." 

My aunt who was forty and unmarried, 
finished her curl with a flip of the fingers — re- 
sumed her hold of the broom, and leaned her 
chin upon one end of it, with an expression of 
some wonder, some curiosity, and a great deal 
of expectation. 

I could have wished my aunt had been a 
little less curious, or that I had been a little 
less communicative: for though it was all 
honestly said on my part, yet my contempla- 
tions bore that vague, shadowy, and delicious 
sweetness, that it seemed impossible to put 
them into words — least of all, at the bidding 
of an old lady, leaning on a broom-handle. 

"Give me time, Aunt Tabithy," said I— "a 
good dinner, and after it a good cigar, and I 
will serve you such a sunshiny sheet of reverie, 
all twisted out of the smoke, as will make your 
kind old heart ache ! " 

Aunt Tabithy, in utter contempt, either of 
my mention of the dinner, or of the smoke, or 



Over 1)i0 Cigar 



of the old heart, commenoed sweeping furi- 
oosly. 

''If I do not "— continaed I, anxious to ap- 
pease her — ''if I do not, Aunt Tabitby, it 
shall be my last cigar (Aunt Tabithy stopped 
sweeping) ; and all my tobacco money (Aunt 
Tabithy drew near me), shall go to buy 
ribbons for my most respectable, and worthy 
Aunt Tabithy ; and a kinder person could not 
have them ; or one," continued I, with a gen- 
erous puff, " whom they would more adorn." 

My Aunt Tabithy gave me a half-playful— 
half-thankful nudge. 

It was in this way that our bargain was 
struck ; my part of it is already stated. On 
her part. Aunt Tabithy was to allow me, in 
case of my success, an evening cigar un- 
molested, upon the front porch, underneath 
her favorite rose-tree. It was concluded, I 
say, as I sat; the smoke of my cigar rising 
gracefully around my Aunt Tabithy's curls; 
our right hands joined ; my left was holding 
my cigar, while in hers, was tightly grasped — 
her broom-stick. 

And this reverie, to make the matter short. 



0ver 1>i0 Cigar 



LIGHTED WITH A COAL 



0ver 1)i0 Cigar 



perduto — to love, and not be loved, is time 
lost. 

I take a kind of rude pleasure in flinging 
down a coal that has no life in it. And it 
seemed to me — and may Heaven pardon the 
ill-nature that belongs to the thought — that 
there would be much of the same kind of 
satisfaction, in dashing from you a lukewarm 
creature, covered over with the yellow ashes 
of old combustion, that with ever so much 
attention, and the nearest approach of the lips, 
never shows signs of fire. May Heaven for- 
give me again, but I should long to break 
away, though the marriage bonds held me, 
and see what liveliness was to be found else- 
where. 

I have seen before now a creeping vine try 
to grow up against a marble wall ; it shoots 
out its tendrils in all directions, seeking for 
some crevice by which to fasten and to climb 
— looking now above and now below — twining 
upon itself — reaching farther up, but after all, 
finding no good foothold, and falling away as 
if in despair. But nature is not unkind ; twin- 
ing things were made to twine. The longing 
tendrils take new strength in the sunshine. 



Qvcv 1)i0 Cigar 



and in the showers, and shoot out towards 
some hospitable trunk. They fasten easily to 
the kindly roughness of the bark, and stretch 
up, dragging after them the vine; which by 
and by, from the topmost bough, will nod its 
blossoms over at the marble wall, that refused 
it succor, as if it said — stand there in your 
pride, cold, white ^vall ! we, the tree and I, are 
kindred, it the helper, and I the helped ; and 
bound fast together, we riot in the sunshine, 



Qvcv 1)i0 Cigar 



about it, that you wish might last. It is like 
your first love — fresh, genial, and rapturous. 
Like that, it fills up all the craving of your 
soul; and the light, blue wreaths of smoke, 
like the roseate clouds that hang around the 
morning of your heart life, cut you off from 
the chill atmosphere of mere worldly compan- 
ionship, and make a gorgeous firmament for 
your fancy to riot in. 

I do not speak now of those later, and man- 
lier passions, into which judgment must be 
thrusting its cold tones, and when all the 
sweet tumult of your heart has mellowed into 
the sober ripeness of affection. But I mean 
that boyish burning, which belongs to every 
poor mortal's lifetime, and which bewilders 
him with the thought that he has reached the 
highest point of human joy before he has tasted 
any of that bitterness, from which alone our 
highest human joys have sprung. I mean the 
time, when you cut initials with your jack- 
knife on the smooth bark of beech trees ; and 
went moping under the long shadows at sun- 
set ; and thought Louise the prettiest name in 
the wide world ; and picked flowers to leave at 
her door ; and stole out at night to watch the 



Qvcv 1)i0 Cigar 



light in her window ; and read such novels as 
those about Helen Mar, or Charlotte, to give 
some adequate expression to your agonized 



Qvcv 1)i0 Cigar 



Oolcondas! How bravely you study the top 
lines of the spelling-book that your eyes may 
run over the edge of the cover, without the 
schoolmaster's notice, and feast upon her I 

You half wish that somebody would run 
away with her, as they did with Amanda, in 
the " Children of the Abbey " — and then you 
might ride up on a splended black horse, and 
draw a pistol, or blunderbuss, and shoot the 
villains, and carry her back, all in tears, faint- 
ing, and languishing upon your shoulder — and 
have her father (who is judge of the county 
court) take your hand in both of his, and make 
some eloquent remarks. A great many such 
recaptures you run over in your mind, and 
think how delightful it would be to peril your 
life, either by flood, or fire— to cut oflf your 
arm, or your head, or any such trifle — for your 
dear Louise. 

You can hardly think of anything more joy- 
ous in life, than to live with her in some old 
castle, very far away from steamboats, and 
post-offices, and pick wild geraniums for her 
hair, and read poetry with her, under the 
shade of very dark ivy vines. And you would 
have such a charming boudoir in some corner 



Qvct Die Cidar 



Over 1)i0 Cigar 



-Heigho! mused I — as the blue smoke 



rolled up around my bead — these first kindlings 
of the love that is in one, are very pleasant I 
but will they last ? 

You love to listen to the rustle of her dress, 
as she stirs about the room. It is better music 
than grown-up ladies will make upon all their 
harpsichords, in the years that are to come. 
But this, thank Heaven, you do not know. 

You think you can trace her foot-mark, on 
your way to the school ; and what a dear little 
foot-mark it is ! And from that single point, 
if she be out of your sight for days, you con- 
jure up the whole image — the elastic, lithe little 
figure — the springy step — the dotted muslin so 
light, and flowing — the silk kerchief, with its 
most tempting fringe playing upon the clear 
white of her throat — how you envy that fringe ! 
And her chin is as round as a peach — and the 
lips — such lips! and you sigh, and hang your 
h(3ad ; and wonder when you shall see her 
jigain ! 

You would like to write her a letter ; but 
then people would talk so coldly about it ; and 
besides you are not quite sure you could write 
such billets as Thaddeus of Warsaw used to 



Qvcv 1>i0 Ciaar 



I 



Qvcv 1)i0 Cigar 



geographies, and of your natural philosophy. 
You know perfectly well how it looks ; it 
seems to be written, indeed, somewhere behind 
your eyes ; and in such happy position with 
respect to the optic nerve, that you see it all 
the time, though you are looking in an oppo- 
site direction ; and so distinctly, that you have 
great fears lest people looking into your eyes, 
should see it too ! 

For all this, it is a far more delicate name to 
handle than most that you know of. Though 
it is very cool, and pleasant on the brain, it is 
very hot, and difficult to manage on the lip. 
It is not, as your schoolmaster would say — a 
name, so much as it is an idea — not a noun, 
but a verb — an active, and transitive verb; 
and yet a most irregular verb, wanting the 
passive voice. 

It is something against your schoolmaster's 
doctrine, to find warmth in the moonlight ; but 
with that soft hand — it is very soft — lying 
within your arm, there is a great deal of 
warmth, whatever the philosophers may say, 
even in pale moonlight. The beams, too, 
breed sympathies, very close-running sympa- 
thies — not talked about in the chapters on 



Over 1>i0 Ciaar 



Qvcv 1>i0 Cioar 



a bad-looking boy ; on the contrary you think 
(with a grit of your teeth) that he was infernally 
handsome ! You look at him very shyly, and 
very closely, when you pass him ; and turn to 
see how he walks, and how to measure his 
shoulders, and are quite disgusted with the 
very modest, and gentlemanly way, with 
which he carries himself. You think you 
would like to have a fisticuff with him, if you 
were only sure of having the best of it. You 
sound the neighborhood coyly, to find out who 
the strange boy is : and are half ashamed of 
yourself for doing it. 

You gather a magnificent bouquet to send 
her and tie it with a green ribbon, and love 
knot — and get a little rose-bud in acknowl- 
edgment. That day, you pass the tall boy 
with a very patronizing look ; and wonder if 
he would not like to have a sail in your boat ? 

But by and by, you will find the tall boy 
walking with her again ; and she looks side- 
ways at him, and with a kind of grown up air, 
that makes you feel very boy like, and humble 
and furious. And you look daggers at him 
when you pass ; and touch your cap to her, 
with quite uncommon dignity ; and wonder if 



Qvcv 1>i0 Cigar 



he is not sorry, and does not feel very badly, 

i.-. 1 4. U ^ I 1- i? ., O 



Over f>i0 Cigax 



broken saperlatires, that yoa are ashamed of. 
You strain for language that will scald the 
thought of her ; bat hot as you can make it, it 
falls back npon your heated fancy like a cold 
shower. 

Heat 80 intense as this consumes very fast ; 
and the matter it feeds fastest on, is — ^jodg- 
ment; and with judgment gone, there is room 
for jealousy t» creep in. You grow petulant 
at another sight of that tall-boy ; and the one 
tear which cured your first petulance, will not 
cure it now. You let a little of your fever 
break out in speech — a speech which you go 
home to mourn over. But she knows nothing 
of the mourning, while she knows very much 
of the anger. Vain tears are very apt to breed 
pride ; and when you go again with your petu- 
lance, you will find your rosy-lipped girl taking 
her first studies in dignity. 

You will stay away, you say — poor fool, you 
are feeding on what your disease loves best ! 
You wonder if she is not sighing for your re- 
turn — and if your name is not running in her 
thought — and if tears of regret are not moisten- 
ing those sweet eyes. 

And wondering thus, you stroll moodily, 



®ver 1>i0 Cigar 



and hopefully towards her father's home ; you 
pass the door once — twice; you loiter under 
the shade of an old tree, where you have some- 
times bid her adieu ; your old fondness is strug- 
gling with your pride, and has almost made the 
mastery ; but in the very moment of victory, 
you see yonder your hated rival, and beside 
him, looking very gleeful, and happy — your 




0ver Die Cigar 



For a week, you do not see her — nor for a 
month — nor two months — nor three. 

Puflf — puflf once more ; there is only a 

little nauseous smoke ; and now — my cigar is 
gone out altogether. I must light again. 



Qvcv 1>i0 Cigar 



Qvct f>i0 Cigar 



bausting, that if it were once gone out, 
whether in the chills of death, or under the 
blasts of pitiless fortune, there would be no 
rekindling; simply because there would be 
nothing left to kindle. And I can imagine 
too a fire so earnest, and so true, that what- 
ever malice might urge, or a devilish ingenuity 
devise, there could no other be found, high or 
low, far or near, which should not so contrast 
with the first, as to make it seem cold as ice. 

I remember in an old play of Davenport's, 
the hero is led to doubt his mistress; he is 
worked upon by slanders, to quit her altogether 
— though he has loved, and does still love 
passionately. She bids him adieu, with large 
tears dropping from her eyes (and I lay down 
my cigar, to recite it aloud, fancying all the 
while, with a varlet impudence, that some 
Abstemia is repeating it to me) : 



Farewell, Loreuzo, 

Whom ray soul doth love; if you ever marry, 
May you meet a good wife: so good, that you 
May not suspect her, nor may she be worthy 
Of your suspicion : and if you hear hereafter 
That I am dead, inquire but my last words, 
And you shall know that to the last I loved you. 



^er tie Cigar 



And when you walk forth with your second choice, 
Into the pleasant fields, and by chance talk of me 
Imagine that yon see me thin, and pale, 
Strewing yoor path with flowers ! 

Poor Abstemial Lorenzo never could 

find such another — there never could be such 
another, for such Lorenzo. 

To blaze anew, it is essential that the old 
fire be utterly gone ; and can any truly-lighted 
soul ever grow cold, except the grave cover it? 
The poets all say no : Othello, had he lived a 
thousand years, would not have loved again — 
nor Desdemona — nor Andromache — nor Medea 
— nor Ulysses — nor Hamlet. But in the cool 
wreaths of the pleasant smoke, let us see what 
truth is in the poets. 

What is love — mused I — at the first, 

but a mere fancy ? There is a prettiness, that 
your soul cleaves to, as your eye to a pleasant 
flower, or your ear to a soft melody. Pres- 
ently, admiration comes in, as a sort of 
balance wheel for the eccentric revolutions of 
your fancy ; and your admiration is touched 
off with such neat quality as respect. Too 
much of this, indeed, they say, deadens the 
fancy ; and so retards the action of the heart 
25 



Over f>i0 Cigta 



luachineij. Bat vritb a proper modicum to 
serve as a stock, devotion is grafted in ; and 
then, bj an agreeable and confosed mingling^ 
all these qualities, and affections of the sool, 
become transfused into that vital feeling, called 
love. 

Voar heart seems to have gone over to an- 
other and better counterpart of your human- 
ity ; u'hat is left of you, seems the mere husk 
of some kernel that has been stolen. It is not 
an emotion of yours, which is making very 
eaijy voyages towards another soul — that may 
l>e shortened, or lengthened, at will ; but it is 
a |>assion, that is only yours, because it is 
t/iere; the more it lodges there, the more 
keenly you feel it to be yours. 

The qualities that feed this passion, may in- 
deed belong to \^ou ; but they never gave birth 
to such an one before, simply because there 
was no place in which it could grow. Nature 
i.s very provident in these matters. The 
chrysalis does not burst, until there is a wing 
to help the gauze-fly upward. The shell does 
not break, until the bird can breathe ; nor 
does the swallow quit its nest, until its wings 



Qvcv 1>i0 Cigar 



This passion of love is strong, just in pro- 
portion as the atmosphere it finds, is tender of 
its life. Let that atmosphere change into too 
great coldness, and the passion becomes a 
wreck — not yours, because it is not worth 
your having — nor vital, because it has lost the 
soil where it grew. But is it not laying the 
reproach in a high quarter, to say that those 
qualities of the heart which begot this passion, 
are exhausted, and will not thenceforth germi- 
nate through all of your lifetime ? 



Over tN0 Ci0ar 



tc^ rtrj breezes of Hearers ^tre tixe appomted 
m fJ W CTgtn u> guide them towards wmnnth 
and ionsbine ! 

And ^ith a little soddenaess of maniier, 

1 tear off a ^ri^p of paper, and boiding it in 
the ^Azze of mj lamp, re-light mv cigar. It 
doe4 not bam ao easilv perhaps as at first : it 
trants warming, before it will catch ; bat 
presently, it is in a broad, fall glow, that 
tbro'Tn light into the comers of mj room. 

Jast »o— tboaght I — the lore of youth, 

which sacceeds the crackling blaze of boyhood, 
makes a broader flame, though it may not be 
uf} easily kindled. A mere dainty step, or a 
carling lock, or a soft bine eye are not enough ; 
but in her, who has quickened the new blaze, 
there is a blending of all these, with a certain 
sweetness of soul, that finds expression in 
whatever ff^ature or motion you look upon. 
Her charms steal over you gently, and almost 
irnfK;rccptibly. You think that she is a 
pleasant companion — nothing more: and you 
find tho opinion strongly confirmed, day by 
<lay ; ho well confirmed, indeed, that you be- 
gin to wonder — why it is, that she is such a 
delightful companion ? It cannot be her eye, 




Nellv 



Over His Cigar 



Qvcr 1>i0 Cigar 



for you have seen eyes almost as pretty as 
Nelly's; nor can it be her mouth, though 
Nelly's mouth is certainly very sweet. And 
you keep studying what ou earth it can be 
that makes you so earnest to be near her, or 
to listen to her voice. The study is pleasant. 
You do not know any study that is more so ;. 
or which you accomplish with less mental 



Qvcv 1>i0 Cigar 



your companionship, and your wonder, relapse 
into a constant, quiet habit of unmistakable 
love — not impulsive, quick, and fiery, like the 
first; but mature and calm. It is as if it were 
born with your soul, and the recognition of it 
was rather an old remembrance, than a fresh 
passion. It does not seek to gratify its ex- 
uberance, and force, with such relief as night- 
serenades, or any Jacques-like meditations in 
the forest ; but it is a quiet, still joy, that floats 
on your hope, into the years to come — making 
the prospect all sunny and joyful. 

It is a kind of oil and balm for whatever was 
stormy, or harmful : it gives a permanence to 
the smile of existence. It does not make the 
sea of your life turbulent with high emotions, 
as if a strong wind were blowing — but it is as 
if an Aphrodite had broken on the surface, and 
the ripples were spreading with a sweet, low 
sound, and widening far out to the very shores 
of time. 

There is no need now, as with the boy, to 
bolster up your feelings with extravagant vows: 
even should you try this in her presence, the 
words are lacking to put such vows in. So 
soon as you reach them, they fail you : and the 



®vcr t)i0 Cigar 



Qvcv I3i0 Cigar 



the old lady lias an ambition of another sort, 
which you, a simple, earnest, plodding bach- 
elor, can never gratify — being of only passable 
appearance, and unschooled in the fashions of 
the world, you will be eternally rubbing the 
elbows of the old lady's pride. 

All this will be strangely afflicted to one 
who has been living for quite a number of 
weeks, or months, in a pleasant dream-land, 
where there were no five per cents., or reputa- 
tions, but only a very full, and delirious flow 
of feeling. What care you for any position, 
except a position near the being that you 
love? What wealth do you prize, except a 
wealth of heart, that shall never know diminu- 
tion ; or for reputation, except that of truth, 
and of honor ? How hard it would break upon 
these pleasant idealities, to have a weazen- 
faced old guardian set his arm in yours, and 
tell you how tenderly he has at heart the hap- 
piness of his niece ; and reason with you about 
your very small, and sparse dividends, and your 
limited business; and caution you — for he has 
a lively regard for your interests — about con- 
tinuing your addresses ? 

The kind old curmudgeon ! 



0\>er I3i0 Cidar 



Your man Tom has grown suddenly a very 
stupid fellow ; and all your charity for withered 
wall-flowers, is gone. Perhaps in your wrath 
the suspicion comes over you, that she too 
wishes you were something higher, or more 
famous, or richer, or anything but what you 
are ! a very dangerous suspicion : for no man 
with any true nobility of soul can ever make 
his heart the slave of another's condescension. 



0ver tie Cigar 



a true-hearted woman! That last fond look 
of hers, hopeful and encouraging, has more 
power within it to nerve your soul to high 
deeds, than all the admonitions of all your 
tutors. Your heart, beating large with hope, 
quickens the flow upon the brain; and you 
make wild vows to win greatness. But alas, 
this is a great world — very full, and very 
rough : 

aU np-hiU work when we would do ; 

All down-hill, when we softer. * 

Hard, withering toil only can achieve a 
name ; and long days, and months, and years, 
must be passed in the chase of that bubble — 
reputation ; which when once grasped, breaks 
in your eager clutch, into a hundred lesser 
bubbles, that soar above you still I 

A clandestine meeting from time to time, 
and a note or two tenderly written, keep up 
the blaze in your heart. But presently, the 
lynx-eyed old guardian — so tender of your in- 
terests, and hers — forbids even this irregular 
and unsatisfying correspondence. Now you 



Qvcv tiis Cigar 



®ver tis Cigar 



which you recall your broken hopes ; and with 
which you selfishly link hers to the shattered 
wreck : but absence, and ignorance tame the 
point of your woe. You call up the image of 
Kelly, adorning other and distant scenes. You 
see the tearful smile give place to a blithesome 
cheer ; and the thought of you that shaded her 
fair face so long, fades under the sunshine of 
gayety ; or at best, it only seems to cross that 
white forehead, like a playful shadow, that a 
fleecy cloud-remnant will fling upon a sunny 
lawn. 

As for. you, the world with its whirl and 
roar, is deafening the sweet, distant notes, that 
come up through old, choked channels of the 
affections. Life is calling for earnestness, and 
not for regrets. So the months, and the years 
slip by ; your bachelor habit grows easy and 
light with wearing ; you have mourned enough, 
to smile at the violent mourning of others ; and 
you have enjoyed enough, to sigh over their 
little eddies of delight. Dark shades, and de- 
licious streaks of crimson and gold color lie 
upon your life. Your heart with all its weight 
of ashes, can yet sparkle at the sound of a fairy 
step ; and your face can yet open into a round 



Qvcv tie Cigar 



of joyous smiles, that are almost hopes — in the 
presence of some bright-eyed girl. 

But amid this, there will float over you from 
time to time, a midnight trance, in which you 
will hear again with a thirsty ear, the witching 
melody of the days that are gone; and you 
will wake from it with a shudder into the cold 
resolves of your lonely, and manly life. But 
the shudder passes as easy as night from morn- 
ing. Tearful regrets, and memories that touch 
to the quick, are dull weapons to break through 
the panoply of your seared, eager, and ambi- 
tious manhood. They only venture out like 
timid, white-winged flies, when night is come ; 
and at the first glimpse of the dawn, they 
shrivel up, and lie without a flutter, in some 
corner of your soul. 

And when, years after, you learn that she 
has returned — a woman, there is a slight glow, 
but no tumultuous bound of the heart. Life, 
and time have worried you down like a spent 
hound. The world has given you a habit of 
easy and unmeaning smiles. You half accuse 
yourself of ingratitude and forgetfulness ; but 
the accusation does not oppress you. It does 
not even distract your attention from the morn- 
37 



®ver tie Cigar 



ing journal. You cannot work yourself into a 
respectable degree of indignation against the 
old gentleman — her guardian. 

You sigh — poor thing I and in a very flashy 
waistcoat, you venture a morning call. 

She meets you kindly — a comely, matronly 
dame in gingham, with her curls all gathered 
under a high-topped comb ; and she presents 
to you two little boys in smart crimson jack- 
ets, dressed up with braid. And you dine with 
madam — a family party ; and the weazen-faced 
old gentleman meets you with a most pleasant 
shake of the hand — hints that you were among 
his niece's earliest friends, and hopes that you 
are getting on well ? 

ri :4._ii ._ 111 



0ver tie Cigar 



has fairly set in and the blaze of your fire 
goes flickering over your lonely quarters, you 
heave a deep sigh. And as your thought runs 
back to the perfidious Louise, and calls up the 
married, and matronly Nelly, you sob over 
that poor dumb heart within you, which 
<5raves so madly a free and joyous utterance ! 
And as you lean over with your forehead in 
your hands and your eyes fall upon the old 
hounds slumbering on the rug — the tears start, 
and you wish — that you had married years 
ago ; and that you too had your pair of prat- 
tling boys, to drive away the loneliness of your 
solitary hearthstone. 

My cigar would not go ; it was fairl}^ 

out. Hut with true bachelor obstinacy, I 
vowed that I would light again. 



39 



Qvcv tie Cigar 



LIGHTED WITH A MATCH 

I HATE a match. I feel sure that brimstone 
matches were never made in heaven ; and it is 
sad to think, that with few exceptions, matches 
are all of them tipped with brimstone. 

But my taper having burned out, and the 
coals being all dead upon the hearth, a match 
is all that is left to me. 

All matches will not blaze on the first trial ; 
and there are those, that with the most 
indefatigable coaxings, never show a spark. 
They may indeed leave in their trail phos- 
phorescent streaks ; but you can no more 
light your cigar at them, than you can kindle 
your heart, at the covered wife- trails, which 
the infernal, gossiping, old match-makers will 
lay in your path. 

Was there ever a bachelor of seven and 
twenty, I wonder, who has not been haunted 
by pleasant old ladies, and trim, excellent, 
good-natured, married friends, who talk to 



Over tie Cigar 



him about nice matches — " very nice matches," 
matches which never go ofif ? And who, pray, 
has not had some kind old uncle, to fill two 
sheets for him (perhaps in the time of heavy 
postages), about some most eligible connection 



0ver tie Cigar 



at the head of an establishment. And I must 
confess that this kind of talk has a pleasant 
jingle about it ; and is one of the cleverest 
aids to a bachelor's day-dreams, that can well 
be imagined. And let not the poating lady 
condemn me, without a hearing. 

It is certainly cheerful to think— for a con- 
templative bachelor — that the pretty ermine 
which so sets ofif the transparent hue of your 
imaginary wife, or the lace which lies so be- 
witchingly upon the superb roundness of her 
form — or the graceful bodice, trimmed to a 
line, which is of such exquisite adaptation to 
her lithe figure, will be always at her com- 
mand — nay, that these are only units among 
the chameleon hues, under which you shall 
feed upon her beauty ! I want to know if it 
is not a pretty cabinet picture, for fancy to 
luxuriate upon — that of a sweet wife, who is 
cheating hosts of friends into love, sympathy 
and admiration, by the modest munificence of 
her wealth? Is it not rather agreeable, to 
feed your hopeful soul upon that abundance, 
which, while it supplies her need, will give a 
range to her loving charities — which will keep 
from her brow the shadows of anxiety, and 



0ver t>i9 Cigar 



will sublime her gentle nature, by adding to it 



Qvcv 1)i0 Cigar 



promoter of intelligence, since it multiplies the 
avenues for its reception ; and it is a good basis 
for a generous habit of life ; it even equips 
beauty, neither hardening its hand with toil, 
nor tempting the wrinkles to come early. But 
whether it provokes greatly that returning 
passion — that abnegation of soul — that sweet 
trustfulness, and abiding affection, which are 
to clothe your heart with joy, is far more 
doubtful. Wealth, while it gives so much, 
asks much in return ; and the soul that is 
grateful to mammon, is not over ready to be 
grateful for intensity of love. It is hard to 
gratify those, who have nothing left to gratify. 

Heaven help the man who having wearied 
his soul with delays and doubts, or exhausted 
the freshness, and exuberance of his youth — by 
a hundred little dallyings with love — consigns 
himself at length to the issues of what people 
call a nice match — whether of monej'', or of a 
family ! 

Heaven help you (I brush the ashes from my 
cigar) when you begin to regard marriage as 
only a respectable institution, and under the 
advices of staid old friends, begin to look about 
you for some very respectable wife. ¥ou may 




*' Her dress is elegant and tasiet'ul." 



r Hi I Cigar 



Qvev tie Cidar 



I 



Qvcv loie diQSLV 



the pleasant excitement of the chase ; and 
whatever family dignity may surround her, 
only adds to the pleasurable glow of the pur- 
suit. You give an hour more to your toilette, 
and a hundred or two more, a year to your 
tailor. All is orderly, dignified, and gracious. 
Charlotte is a sensible woman, everybody says ; 
and you believe it yourself. You agree in 
your talk about books, and churches and flow- 
ers. Of course she has good taste — for she 
accepts you. The acceptance is dignified, ele- 
gant, and even courteous. 

You receive numerous congratulations ; and 
your old friend Tom writes you — that he hears 
you are going to marry a splendid woman ; 
and all the old ladies say — what a capital 
match! And your business partner, who is a 
married man, and something of a wag — 
"sympathizes sincerely." Upon the whole, 
you feel a little proud of your arrangement. 
You write to an old friend in the country, that 
yon are to marry presently Miss Charlotte of 
such a street, whose father was something 
very fine, in his way ; and whose father before 
him was very distinguished ; you add, in a 
postscript, that she is easily situated, and has 



®vcr l)i0 (tiaar 



" expectations." Your friend, who has a wife 
that he loves, and that loves hira, writes back 
kindly — *' hoping you may be happy " ; and 
hoping so yourself, you light your cigar — one 
of your last bachelor cigars — with the margin 



Qvcv 1)10 Cigar 



again — bridal pictures are not borne pictures ; 
and the hour at the altar, is but a poor type of 
the waste of years ! 

Your household is elegantly ordered ; Char- 
lotte has secured the best of housekeepers, and 
she meets the compliments of your old friends 
who come to dine with you, with a suavity, 
that is never at fault. And they tell you — 
after the cloth is removed, and you sit quietly 
smoking in memory of the olden times — that 
^he is a splendid woman. Even the old ladies 
who come for occasional charities, think 
madame a pattern of a lady ; and so think her 
old admirers, whom she receives still with an 
easy grace, that half puzzles you. And as you 
stand by the ball-room door, at two of the 
morning, with your Charlotte's shawl upon 
your arm, some little panting fellow wnll con- 
firm the general opinion, by telling you that 
madame is a magnificent dancer ; and Monsieur 
le Comte, will praise extravagantly her French. 
You are grateful for all this ; but you have an 
uncommonly serious way of expressing your 
gratitude. 

You think you ought to be a very happy 
iellow ; and yet long shadows do steal over 
48 



Qvcv lois Cigar 



your thought ; and you wonder that the sight of 
your Charlotte in the dress you used to admire 
so much, does not scatter them to the winds ; 
but it does not. You feel coy about putting 
your arm around that delicately robed figure 
— you might derange the plaitings of her 
dress. She is civil towards you ; and tender 
towards your bachelor friends. She talks with 
dignity — adjusts her lace cap — and hopes you 
will make a figure in the world, for the sake 
of the family. Her cheek is never soiled with 
a tear ; and her smiles are frequent, especially 
when you have some spruce yoUng fellows at 
your table. 

You catch sight of occasional notes, per- 
haps, whose superscription you do not know ; 
and some of her admirers' attentions become 
so pointed, and constant, that your pride is 
stirred. It Avould be silly to show jealousy ; 
but you suggest to your " dear " — as you sip 
your tea — the slight impropriety of her action. 

Perhaps you fondly long for some little 
scene, as a proof of wounded confidence ; but 
no — nothing of that; she trusts (calling you 
" m}^ dear "), that she knows how to sustain the 



Qvcv l^id Cigar 



You are too sick at heart, for comment, or 
for reply. 

And is this the intertwining of soul of 

which you had dreamed in the days that are 
gone ? Is this the blending of sympathies that 
was to steal from life its bitterness : and spread 
over care and suffering, the sweet, ministering 
hand of kindness, and of love ? Ay, you may 
well wander back to your bachelor club, and 
make the hours long at the journals, or at play 
— killing the flagging lapse of your life ! Talk 
sprightly with your old friends — and mimic 
the joy you have not ; or you will wear a bad 
name upon your hearth and head. Never 
suffer your Charlotte to catch sight of the tears 
which in bitter hours, may start from your 
eye ; or to hear the sighs which in your times 
of solitary musings, may break forth sudden, 
and heavy. Go on counterfeiting your life, as 
you have begun. It was a nice match ; and 
you are a nice husband ! 

But you have a little boy, thank God, 
towards whom your heart runs out freely ; 
and you love to catch him in his respite from 
your well-ordered nursery, and the tasks of his 
teachers — alone ; and to spend upon him a little 



Qvcv 1)10 Cigar 



of that depth of feeling, which through so 
many years has scarce been stirred. Tou play 
with him at his games ; you fondle him ; you 
take him to your bosom. 

But papa — he says — see how you have tum- 
bled my collar. What shall I tell mamma ? 

Tell her, my boy, that I love you ! 

Ah, thought I — my cigar was getting dull, 
and nauseous — is there not a spot in your 
heart, that the gloved hand of your elegant 
wife has never reached : that you wish it might 



Over 1>i0 Cigar 



ien — she says — writes too shamefully. 
\.nd at your return, there is no great antici- 
ion of delight; in contrast with the old 
ams, that a pleasant summer's journey has 
led up, your parlor as you enter it — so ele- 
t, so still — so modish — seems the charnel* 
se of your heart. 
Jy and by, you fall into weary days of sick- 
you have capital nurses — nurses highly 
ommended — nurses who never make mis- 
es — nurses who have served long in the 
ily. But alas for that heart of sympathy, 
for that sweet face, shaded with your pain 
ike a soft landscape with flying clouds — 
. have none of them ! Your pattern wife 
f come in from time to time to look after 
r nurse, or to ask after your sleep, and 
ie out — her silk dress rustling upon the 
r — like dead leaves in the cool night breezes 
winter. Or perhaps after putting this chair 
its place, and adjusting to a more tasteful 
that curtain — she will ask you, with a 
e that might mean sympathy, if it were 
a stranger to you — if she can do anything 
re. 
hank her — as kindly as you can, and close 



®vcr loie (tiaar 



your eyes, and dream^-or rouse up, to lay 
your hand upon the head of your little boy — 
to drink in health, and happiness, from his 
earnest look, as he gazes strangely upon your 
pale and shrunken forehead. Your smile even, 
ghastly with long suffering, disturbs him ; 
there is no interpreter, save the heart, be- 
tween you. 

Your parched lips feel strangely, to his 
flushed, healthful face ; and he steps about on 
tiptoe, at a motion from the nurse, to look at 
all those rosy-colored medicines upon the table 
— and he takes your cane from the corner, and 
passes his hand over the smooth ivory head ; 
and he runs his eye along the wall from picture 
to picture, till it rests on one he knows — a 
figure in bridal dress — beautiful, almost fond 
— and he forgets himself, and says aloud — 
" There's mamma ! " 

The nurse puts her finger to her lip ; you 
waken from your doze to see where your eager 
boy is looking; and your eyes, too, take in 
much as they can of that figure — now shadowy 
to your fainting vision — doubly shadowy to 
your fainting heart 1 

From day to day, you sink from life : the 



Qvcv tie Cigar 



physician says the end is not far off; why 
should it be ? There is very little elastic force 
within you to keep the end away. Madame 
is called, and your little boy. Your sight is 
dim, but they whisper that she is beside your 
bed; and you reach out your hand — both 
hands. You fancy you hear a sob — a strange 
sound! It seems as if it came from distant 
years — a confused, broken sigh, sweeping over 
the long stretch of your life : and a sigh from 
your heart — not audible — answers it. 

Your trembling jSngers clutch the hand of 
your little boy, and you drag him towards you, 
and move your lips, as if you would speak to 
him ; and they place his head near you, so 
that you feel his fine hair brushing your cheek 
— '' My boy, you must love — your mother ! " 

Your other hand feels a quick, convulsive 
grasp, and something like a tear drops upon 
your face. Good God ! Can it be indeed a 
tear? 

You strain your vision, and a feeble smile 
flits over your features, as you seem to see her 
figure — the figure of the painting — bending 
over you ; and you feel a bound at your heart 
— the same bound that you felt on your bridal 



Qvcv l^ie Cigar 



morning ; the same bound which you used to 
feel in the spring-time of your life. 

Only one — rich, full bound of the heart 

— that is all ! 

My cigar is out. I could not have lit it 

again, if I would. It was \vholly burned. 

" Aunt Tabithy " — said I, as I finished read- 
ing — " may I smoke now under your rose- 



FOURTH REVERIE 



Morning, Noon, and Evening 

It is a spring day under the oaks — the loved 
oaks of a once cherished home — now, alas, mine 
no longer ! 

I had sold the old farmhouse, and the groves, 
and the cool springs, where I had bathed my 
head in the heats of summer ; and with the first 
warm days of May, they were to pass from me 
forever. Seventy years they had been in the 
possession of my mother's family ; for seventy 
years, they had borne the same name of pro- 
prietorship; for seventy years, the Lares of 
our country home, often neglected, almost for- 
gotten — yet brightened from time to time, by 
gleams of heart-worship, had held their place 
in the sweet valley of Elmgrove. 

And in this changeful, bustling, American 
life of ours seventy years is no child's holiday. 
The hurry qf action, and progress, may pass 
over it with quick step ; but the foot-prints are 
many and deep. You surely w^ill not wonder 
that it made me sad and thoughtful, to break 



Zbc flDornittfl 



the chain of years, that bound to my heart, the 
oaks, the hills, the springs, the valley — and 
such a valley ! 

A wild stream runs through it — large enough 
to make a river for English landscape — wind- 
ing between rich banks, where in summer time, 
the swallows build their nests, and brood by 
myriads. 

Tall elms rise here and there along the 
margin, and with their uplifted arms, and 
leafy spray, throw great patches of shade upon 
the meadow. Old lion-like oaks, too, where 
the meadow-soil hardens into rolling upland, 
fasten to the ground with their ridgy roots : 
and with their gray, scraggy limbs, make de- 
licious shelter for the panting workers, or for 
the herds of August. 

Westward of the stream, where I am lying, 
the banks roll up swiftly into sloping hills, 
covered with groves of oaks, and green pasture 
lands, dotted with mossy rocks. And farther 
on, where some wood has been swept down, 
some ten years gone, by the ax, the new growth, 
heavy \vith the luxuriant foliage of spring, 
covers wide spots of the slanting land ; while 
some dead tree in the midst, still stretches out 



Zbc flDornina 



its bare arms to the blast — a solitary mourner 



Zbc flDorntno 



[er boughs in the insidious current — and of 

ips of alders, and willow tufts — above 

jich, even now, the black-and-white coated 

ho'-Lincoln, is wheeling his musical flight, 

tie his quieter mate sits swaying on the top- 

5t twigs. 

quiet road passes within a short distance 

le, and crosses the brook by a rude timber 

Hge ; beside the bridge is a broad glassy 

^1, shaded by old maples, and hickories, 

are the cattle drink each morning on their 

to the hill pastures. A step or two be- 

|id the stream, a lane branches across the 

adows, to the mansion with the tall 

ineys. I can just remember now, the 

it, broad-shouldered old gentleman, with 

white hat, his long white hair, and his 

|ite-headed cane, who built the house, and 

farmed the whole valley around me. He 

jone, long since; and lies in a graveyard 

Iking upon the sea ! The elms that he 

In ted shake their weird arms over the 

lldering roofs ; and his fruit garden shows 

ly a battered phalanx of mossy limbs, which 

■l scarce tempt the July marauders. 

1 the other direction, upon this side the 



^TIm.^ ^tg%.^^^l^ ^ 



Zbc nDornino 



the gray group of buildings ; and the lowing 
of the cows, not yet driven afield, adds to the 
charming homeliness of the scene. But alas, 
for the poor azalias, and laurels, and vines, 
that I had put out upon the little knoll before 
the cottage door — they are all of them trodden 
down : only one poor creeper hangs its loose 
tresses to the lattice, all disheveled, and for- 
lorn ! 

This by -lane which opens upon my farm- 
house, leaves the road in the middle of a 
grove of oaks ; the brown gate swings upon 
an oak tree — the brown gate closes upon an 
oak tree. There is a rustic seat, built between 
two veteran trees, that rise from a little hillock 
near by. Half a century ago, there was a 
rustic seat on the same hillock — between the 
same veteran trees. I can trace marks of the 
old blotches upon the bark, and the scars of 
the nails, upon the scathed trunks. Time, and 
time again, it has been renewed. This, the 
last, was built by my own hands — a cheerful, 
and a holy duty. 

Sixty years ago, they tell me, my grand- 
father used to loiter here with his gun, while 
his hounds lay around under the scattered 



Zbc nDornino 



oaks. Now he sleeps, as I said, in the little 
graveyard yonder, where I can see one or two 
white tablets glimmering through the foliage. 
I never knew him ; he died, as the brown 
stone table says, aged twenty-six. Yesterday 
I climbed the wall that skirts the yard, and 
plucked a flower from his tomb. I take out 
now from my pocketbook, that flower — a 
frail, first-blooming violet — and write upon the 
slip of paper, into which I have thrust its 
delicate stem — " From my grandfather's tomb 
—1850." 

But other feet have trod upon this knoll — 
far more dear to me. The old neighbors have 
sometimes told me, how they have seen forty 
years ago, two rosy-faced girls, idling on this 
spot, under the shade, and gathering acorns, 
and making oak-leaved garlands, for their 

foreheads Alas, alas, the garlands they 

wear now, are not earthly garlands ! 

Upon that spot, and upon that rustic seat, I 
am lying this May morning. I have placed 
my gun against a tree ; my shot pouch I have 
hung upon a broken limb. I have thrown my 
feet upon the l)ench, and lean against one of 
the gnarled oaks, between which the seat is 
9 



Zbc fl>ornind 



It. Mj hat is off ; ray book and paper, are 
de nie ; and my pencil trembles in my 
^ers, as I catch sight of those white marble 
ets, gleaming through the trees, from the 
^ht above me, like beckoning angel faces, 
they were alive ! two more near, and dear 
nds, in a world where we count friends by 
ts! 

t is morning — a bright spring morning 

er the oaks — these loved oaks of a once 

rished home. Last night, I slept in yonder 

sion, under the elms. The cattle going to 

pasture are drinking in the pool by the 

Ige ; the boy who drives them, is making 

shrill halloo echo against the hills. The 

has risen fairly over the eastern heights, 

shines brightly upon the meadow land and 

:htly upon a bend of the brook below me. 

I birds — the bluebirds sweetest and noisiest 

lU — are singing over me in the branches. 

woodpecker is hammering at a dry limb 

t ; and Carlo pricks up his ears, and looks 

me — then stretches out his head upon his 

in a warm bit of the sunshine — ^and 

OS. 

orning brings back to me the past ; and 



Zbc flDornittfl 



the past brings up not only its actualities, not 
only its events, and memories, but — stranger 
still— what might have been. Every little cir- 
cumstance which dawns on the awakened mem- 
ory, is traced not only to its actual, but to its 



Zbc fl>ornind 



THE MORNING 

Isabel and I — she is my cousin, and is seven 
years old, and I am ten — are sitting together 
on the bank of the stream, under an oak tree 
that leans half way over to the water. I am 
much stronger than she, and taller by a head. 
I hold in my hands a little alder rod, with 
which I am fishing for the roach and minnows, 
that play in the pool below us. 

She is watching the cork tossing on the 
water, or playing with the captured fish that 
lie upon the bank. She has auburn ringlets 
that fall down upon her shoulders; and her 
straw hat lies back upon them, held only by 
the strip of ribbon, that passes under her chin. 
But the sun does not shine upon her head ; for 
the oak tree above us is full of leaves ; and 
only here and there, a dimple of the sunlight 
plays upon the pool, where I am fishing. 

Her eye is hazel, and bright ; and now and 
then she turns it on me with a look of girlish 



Zbc flDorntnd 



curiosity, as I lift up my rod — and again in 
playful menace, as she grasps in her little 
fingers one of the dead fish, and threatens to 
throw it back upon the stream. Her little feet 
hang over the edge of the bank ; and from 
time to time, she reaches down to dip her toe 
in the water ; and laughs a girlish laugh of 
defiance, as I scold her for frightening away 
the fishes. 

" Bella," I say, " what if you should tumble 



(Tbe nDornino 



'' I'm sure I don't know, Bella." 

A little fish has been nibbling for a long 
time at the bait ; the cork has been bobbing 
up and down — and now he is fairly hooked, 
and pulls away towards the bank, and you 
cannot see the cork. 

— " Here, Bella, quick ! " — and she springs 
eagerly to clasp her little hands around the 
rod. But the fish has dragged it away on the 
other side of me ; and as she reaches farther, 
and farther, she slips, cries — " Oh, Paul ! " and 
falls into the water. 

The stream they told us, when we came, was 
over a man's head — it is surely over little Isa- 
bel's. I fling down the rod, and thrusting one 
hand into the roots that support the overhang- 
ing bank, I grasp at her hat, as she comes up ; 
but the ribbons give way, and I see the ter- 
ribly earnest look upon her face as she goes 
down again. Oh, my mother — thought I — if 
you were only here ! 

But she rises again ; this time, I thrust my 
hand into her dress, and struggling hard, keep 
her at the top, until I can place my foot down 
upon a projecting root ; and so bracing myself, 
I drag her to the bank, and having climbed up, 
U 





/^';J|^ 



*fiuc boyhood has its loves.' 



Tht Mtrnlmg 



—Page IS 



Zbc fDornino 



take hold of her belt firmly with both hands, 
and drag her out; and poor Isabel, choked, 
chilled, and wet, is lying upon the grass. 

I commence crying aloud. The workmen in 
the fields hear me, and come down. One takes 
Isabel in his arms, and I follow on foot to our 
uncle's home upon the hill. 

— " Oh, my dear children ! " says my mother . 
and she takes Isabel in her arms ; and pres- 
ently with dry clothes, and blazing wood-fire, 
little Bella smiles again. I am at my mother's 
knee. 

'' I told you so, Paul," says Isabel — " aunty, 
doesn't Paul love me ? " 

" I hope so, Bella," said my mother. 

" I know so," said I ; and kissed her cheek. 

And how did I know it ? The boy does not 
ask; the man does. Oh, the freshness, the 
honesty, the vigor of a boy's heart ! how the 
memory of it refreshes like the first gush of 
spring, or the break of an April shower! 

But boyhood has its Pkide, as well as its 
Loves. 

My uncle is a tall, hard-faced man ; I fear 
him when he calls me — "child"; I love him 
when he calls me — "Paul." He is almost 



Zbc nDorniitd 



always busy with his books; and when I steal 
into the library door, as I sometimes do, with 
a string of fish, or a heaping basket of nuts to 
show to him — he looks for a moment curiously 
at them, sometimes takes them in his fingers 
— gives them back to me, and turns over the 
leaves of his book. You are afraid to ask him, 
if you have not worked bravely ; yet you want 
to do so. 

You sidle out softly, and go to your mother ; 
she scarce looks at your little stores ; but she 
draws you to her with her arm, and prints a 
kiss upon your forehead. Now your tongue is 
unloosed ; that kiss and that action have done 
it ; you will tell what capital luck you have 
had ; and you hold up your tempting trophies ; 
"are they not great, mother ? " But she is 
looking in your face, and not at your prize. 

"Take them, mother," and you lay the 
basket upon her lap. 

" Thank you, Paul, I do not wish them : but 
you must give some to Bella." 

And away you go to find laughing, playful, 
cousin Isabel. And we sit down together on 
the grass, and I pour out my stores between 
us. " You shall take, Bella, what you wish in 



Zhc fl^ornittd 



your apron, and then when study hours are 
over, we will have such a time down by the 
big rock in the meadow I " 

" But I do not know^ if papa will let me," 
says Isabel. 

" Bella," I say, " do you love your papa ? " 

" Yes," says Bella, " why not ? " 

" Because he is so cold ; he does not kiss you, 
Bella, so often as my mother does ; and besides, 
when he forbids your going away, he does not 
say, as mother does — my little girl will be 
tired, she had better not go — but he says onl v 
— Isabel must not go. I wonder what makes 
him talk so ? " 

" Why, Paul, he is a man, and doesn't — at 
any rate, I love him, Paul. Besides, my 
mother is sick, you know." 

" But Isabel, my mother will be your mother, 
too. Come, Bella, we will go ask her if we 



Zbc nDorniitd 



" You may go," she says, " if your ui 
willing." 

*^ But mamma, I am afraid to ask him 
not believe he loves me." 

" Don't say so, Paul," and she draws j 
her side ; as if she would supply by he 
love, the lacking love of a universe. 

" Go, with your cousin Isabel, and as 
kindly ; and if he says no — make no rep 

And with courage, we go hand in han^ 
steal in at the library door. There he s 
seem to see him now — in the old waini 
room, covered over with books and pic 
and he wears his heavy-rimmed spectacle 
is poring over some big volume, full of 
words, that are not in any spelling-book, 
step up softly ; and Isabel lays her little 
upon his arm ; and he turns, and says — " 
my little daughter ? " 

I ask if we may go down to the bif 
in the meadow ? 

He looks at Isabel, and says he is afi 
*' we cannot go." 

"But why, uncle? It is only a little 
and we will be very careful." 

" I am afraid, my children ; do not sa 



Zbc flDornino 



more : you can have the pony, and Tray, and 
play at home." 

"But, uncle " 

" You need say no more, my child." 

I pinch the hand of little Isabel, and look in 
her eye— my own half filling with tears. I 
feel that my forehead is flushed, and I hide it 
behind Bella's tresses — whispering to her at 
the same time — " Let us go." 

" What, sir," says my uncle, mistaking 
my meaning — "do you persuade her to dis- 
obey ? " 

Now I am angry, and say blindly — " No, sir, 
I didn't 1 " And then my rising pride will not 
let me say, that I wished only Isabel should 
go out with me. 

Bella cries ; and I shrink out ; and am not 
easy until I have run to bury my head in my 
mother's bosom. Alas ! pride cannot always 
find such covert ! There will be times when it 
will harass you strangely ; when it will peril 
friendships — will sever old, standing intimacy; 
and then — no resource but to feed on its own 
bitterness. Hateful pride ! — to be conquered, 
as a man would conquer an enemy, or it will 
make whirlpools in the current of your affec- 



Zbc nDornittd 



tions — nay, turn the whole tide of the heart 
into rough, and unaccustomed channels ? 

But boyhood has its Gbief, too, apart from 
Pride. 

You love the old dog, Tray ; and Bella loves 
him as well as you. He is a noble old fellow, 
with shaggy hair, and long ears, and big paws, 
that he will put up into your hand, if you ask 
him. And he never gets angry when you play 
with him, and tumble him over in the long 
grass, and pull his silken ears. Sometimes, to 
be sure, he will open his mouth, as if he would 
bite, but when he gets your hand fairly in his 
jaws, he will scarce leave the print of his teeth 
upon it. He will swim, too, bravely, and 
bring ashore all the sticks you throw upon 
the water; and when you fling a stone to 
tease him, he swims round and round, and 
whines, and looks sorry, that he cannot find 
it. 

He will carry a heaping basket full of nuts, 
too, in his mouth, and never spill one of them ; 
and when you come out to your uncle's home in 
the spring, after staying a whole winter in the 
town, he knows you — old Tray does ! And he 
leaps upon you, and lays his paws on your 



Zbc flDorntno 



shoulder, and licks your face ; and is almost as 
glad to see you, as cousin Bella herself. And 
when you put Bella on his back for a ride, he 
only pretends to bite her little feet — but he 
wouldn't do it for the world. Ay, Tray is a 
noble old dog! 

But one summer, the farmers say that some 
of their sheep are killed, and that the dogs 
have worried them ; and one of them comes to 
talk with my uncle about it. 

But Tray never worried sheep ; you know 
he never did ; and so does nurse ; and so does 
Bella ; for in the spring, she had a pet lamb, and 
Tray never worried little Fidele. 

And one or two of the dogs that belong to 
the neighbors are shot ; though nobody knows 
who shot them ; and you have great fears 
about poor Tray ; and try to keep him at home, 
and fondle him more than ever. But Tray 
will sometimes wander off; till finally, one 
afternoon, he comes back whining piteously, 
and with his shoulder all bloody. 

Little Bella cries loud ; and you almost cry, 
as nurse dresses the wound ; and poor old Tray 
whines very sadly. You pat liis head, and 
Bella pats him ; and you sit down together by 



^be nDomiitd 



hitn OQ the floor of the porch, and bring a rug 
for him to lie upon ; and try and tempt him 
with a little milk, and Bella brings a piece of 
cake for him — but he will eat nothing. You 
sit up till very late, long after Bella has gone 
to bed, patting his head, and wishing you 
could do something for poor Tray ; but he 
only licks our hand, and whines more pite- 
ously than ever. 

In the morning, you dress early, and hurry 
downstairs ; but Tray is not lying on the rug ; 
and you run through the house to find him, 
and whistle, and call — Tray — Tray I At 
length you see him lying in his old place, out 
by the cherry tree, and you run to him ; but ho 
does not start ; and you lean down to pat him — 
but he is cold, and the dew is wet upon him — 
pof)r Tray is dead ! 

Vou take his head upon your knees, and pat 
again those glossy ears, and cry ; but you can- 
not bring him to life. And Bella comes, and 
cries with you. You can hardly bear to have 
him put in the ground ; but uncle says he must 
1)0 buried. So one of the workmen digs a 
grave under the cherry tree, where he died — a 
deep grave, and they round it over with earth. 



Zbc flDorntno 



and smooth the sods upon it — even now 1 can 
trace Tray's grave. 

You and Bella together, put up a little slab 
for a tombstone; and she hangs flowers upon 



UA. fSafjrTiz^z »ni5. tie c«Jtrf x_*« of ibes all 

a Sr*r ;b \m: liukr ore* ve Lad bsili mader im 
trail : ;t -v'^'A bare been lo pi<ajaAi lo varm 
oof &nf^ir% ai it« and lo roost liut great rooKts 
OR tLf; flat fU/CKS that made tbe u^p. 

lyo*. this was oot in ttore for me. I had t»d 
the t/>irn boTi good-bre. the day before; mr 
trank was all packed ; I was lo go awaj — to 
v;booL The little oven woald go to ruin — I 
knew it would, I was to leave my home. I 
«ras to bid my mother good-bye, and Lilly, and 
I^F^l, and all the rest; and was to go away 
from them so far, that I shoald only know 
what they were all doing — in letters. It %c*is 
%iif\. And then to hare the clouds come over 
on that morning, and the winds sigh so dis- 
mally ; oh, it was too bad, I thought ! 

It ('/}rnf^ back to me as I lie here this bright 
spring morning, as if it were only yesterday. 
I remember that the pigeons skulked under the 
eaves of the carriage house, and did not sit, as 
they used to do in summer, upon the ridge ; 
and the chickens huddled together about the 
,Htable dcKjrs, as if they were afraid of the cold 



Zbc flDorntno 



autumn. And in the garden the white holly- 
hock stood shivering, and bowed to the wind, 
as if their time had come. The yellow musk- 
melons showed plain among the frost-bitten 
vines, and looked cold, and uncomfortable. 

Then they were all so kind, indoors ! The 

cook made such nice things for my breakfast, 
because little master was going; Lilly would 
give me her seat by the fire, and would put her 
lump of sugar in my cup; and my mother 
looked so smiling, and so tenderly, that I 
thought I loved her more than I ever did be- 
fore. Little Ben was so gay, too ; and wanted 
me to take his jack-knife, if I wished it — 
though he knew that I had a brand new one 
in my trunk. The old nurse slipped a little 
purse into my hand, tied up with a green rib- 
bon — with money in it — and told me not to 
show it to Ben or Lilly. 

And cousin Isabel, who was there on a visit, 
would come to stand by my chair, when my 
mother was talking to me ; and put her hand 
in mine, and look up into my face ; but she did 
not say a word. I thought it was very odd ; 
and yet it did not seem odd to me, that I could 
say nothing to her. I dare say we felt alike. 



JOk fl>omin0 



At length Ben came running in, and said the 
oach bad come ; and there, sure enoagh, out of 
he window, we saw it — a bright yellow 
oach, with four white horses, and band-boxes 
11 over the top, with a great pile of trunks 
«hind. Ben said it was a grand coach, and 
hat he should like a ride in it ; and the old 
lurse came to the door, and said I should have 
, capital time ; but somehow, I doubted if the 
lurse was talking honestly. I believe she 
^ve me an honest kiss though — and such a 
mg! 

But it was nothing to my mother's. Tom 
old me to be a man, and study like a Trojan ; 
mt I was not thinking about study then. 
There was a tall boy in the coach, and I was 
shamed to have him see me cry ; so I didn't, 
t first. But I remember, as I looked back, 
ind saw little Isabel run out into the middle 
►f the street, to see the coach go off, and the 
urls floating behind her, as the wind fresh- 
ned, I felt my heart leaping into my throat, 
,nd the water coming into my eyes, and how 
ust then I caught sight of the tall boy glanc- 
ng at me — and how I tried to turn it oflf, by 
►oking to see if I could button up my great- 
2fi 



Zbc flDorntno 



coat, a great deal lower down than the button- 
holes went. 

But it was of no use ; I put my head out of 
the coach window, and looked back, as the 
little figure of Isabel faded, and then the house, 
and the trees ; and the tears did come ; and I 
smuggled my handkerchief outside without 
turning ; so that I could wipe my eyes, before 
the tall boy should see me. They say that 
these shadows of morning fade, as the sun 
brightens into noonday ; but they are very 
dark shadows for all that ! 



Zbc fl>omind 



leaf, and will return to the hot-house life, as 
strong, and as hopeful as ever. But there are 
others, to whom the severance from the prattle 
of sisters, the indulgent fondness of a mother, 
and the unseen influences of the home altar, 
gives a shock that lasts forever ; it is wrench- 
ing with cruel hand, what will bear but little 
roughness ; and the sobs with which the adieux 
are said, are sobs that may come back in the 
after years, strong, and steady, and terrible. 

God have mercy on the boy who learns to 
sob early ! Condemn it as sentiment, if you 
will ; talk as you will of the fearlessness, and 
strength of the boy's heart — ^yet there belong 
to many, tenderly strung chords of affection 
which give forth low, and gentle music, that 
consoles, and ripens the ear for all the harmo- 
nies of life. These chords a little rude and 
unnatural tension will break, and break for- 
ever. Watch your boy then, if so be he will 
bear the strain ; try his nature, if it be rude or 
delicate; and if delicate, in God's name, do 
not, as you value your peace and his, breed a 
harsh youth spirit in him, that shall take pride 
in subjugating, and forgetting the delicacy, and 
richness of his finer aflFections ! 



Zbc flDornino 



1 see now, looking into the past, the 

troops of boys who were scattered in the great 
playground, as the coach drove up at night. 
The school was in a tall, stately building, with 
a high cupola on the top, where I thought I 
would like to go up. The schoolmaster, they 
told me at home, was kind ; he said he hoped 
I would be a good boy, and patted me on the 
head ; but he did not pat me as my mother 
used to do. Then there was a woman, whom 
they called the matron; who had a great 
many ribbons in her cap, and who shook my 
hand — but so stiffly, that I didn't dare to look 
up in her face. 

One boy took me down to see the school- 
room, which was in the basement, and the 
walls were all moldy, I remember; and when 
we passed a certain door, he said : there was 
the dungeon; how I felt! I hated that boy; 
but I believe he is dead now. Then the 
matron took mo up to my room — a little 
corner room, with two beds, and two windows, 
and a red table, and closet ; and my chum was 
about my size, and wore a queer roundabout 
jacket with big bell buttons ; and he called the 
schoolmaster — " Old Crikey "—and kept me 
29 



Zbc fl>ornind 



ake half the night, telling me how Lo 
lipped the scholars, and how they played 
cks upon him. I thought my chum was a 
ry uncommon boy. 

For a day or two, the lessons were easy, 
d it was sport to play with so many ** f el- 
ws." But soon I began to feel lonely at 
ght after I had gone to bed. I used to wish 
could have my mother come, and kiss me ; 
ter school too, I wished I could step in, and 
1 Isabel how bravely I had got my lessons, 
hen I told my chum this, he laughed at me, 
d said that was no place for " homesick, 
lite-livered chaps." I wondered if my chum 
d any mother. 

We had spending money once a week, with 
lich we used to go down to the village store, 
d club our funds together, to make great 
tchers of lemonade. Some boys would have 
oney besides; though it was against the 
les ; and one, I recollect, showed us a five 
liar bill in his wallet — and we all thought 
must be very rich. 

We marched in procession to the village 
urch on Sundays. There were two long 
iches in the galleries, reaching down the 



^be nDornina 



Zbc nDornino 



as I thought of Isabel, and Ben, and my 
mother, and how much they loved me: and 
laying my face in my hands, I sobbed myself 
to sleep. In the morning I was calm enough : 
it was another of the heart ties broken, though 
I did not know it then. It lessened the old 
attachment to home, because that home could 
neither protect me, nor soothe me with its 
sympathies. Memory indeed freshened and 
grew strong ; but strong in bitterness, and in 
regrets. The boy whose love you cannot feed 
by daily nourishment, will find pride, self- 
indulgence, and an iron purpose coming in to 
furnish other supply for the soul that is in 
him. If he cannot shoot his branches into the 
sunshine, he will become acclimated to the 
shadow, and indifferent to such stray gleams 
of sunshine, as his fortune may vouchsafe. 

Hostilities would sometimes threaten be- 
tween the school and the village boys ; but 
they usually passed off, with such loud, and 
harmless explosions as belong to the wars of 
our small politicians. The village champions 
were a hatter's apprentice, and a thickset 
fellow who worked in a tannery. We prided 
ourselves especially on one stout boy, who 



Zbc flDornino 



wore a sailor's monkey jacket. I cannot but 
think how jaunty that stout boy looked in that 
jacket; and what an Ajax cast there was to 
his countenance! It certainly did occur to 
me, to compare him with William Wallace 
(Miss Porter's William Wallace) and I thought 
how I would have liked to have seen a tusbel 
between them. Of course, we who were small 
boys, limited ourselves to indignant remark, 
and thought " we should like to see them do 
it"; and prepared clubs from the wood-shed, 
after a model suggested by a New York boy, 
who had seen the clubs of the policemen. 

There was one scholar, poor Leslie, who had 
friends in some foreign country, and who oc- 
casionally received letters bearing a foreign 
post-mark : what an extraordinary boy that 
was — what astonishing letters, what extra- 
ordinary parents ! I wondered if I should 
ever receive a letter from '* foreign parts " ? I 
wondered if I should ever write one : but this 
was too much — too absurd ! As if I, Paul, 
wearing a blue jacket with gilt buttons, and 
number four boots, should ever visit those 
countries spoken of in the geographies, and by 
learned travelers! No, no; this \vas too ex- 



Zbc flDomino 



travagant : but I knew what I would do, if I 
lived to come of age : and I vowed that I would 
—I would go to New York ! 

Number seven was the hospital, and for- 
bidden ground ; we had all of us a sort of hor- 
ror of number seven. A boy died there once, 
and oh, how he moaned ; and what a time 
there was when the father came ! 

A scholar by the name of Tom Belton, who 
wore linsey gray, made a dam across a little 
brook by the school, and whittled out a saw- 
mill, that actually sawed : he had genius. I 
expected to see him before now at the head of 
American mechanics ; but I learn with pain, 
that he is keeping a grocery store. 

At the close of all the terms we had ex- 
hibitions, to which all the townspeople came, 
and among them the black-eyed Jane, and the 
pretty Sophia with fur around her hat. My 
great triumph was when I had the part of one 
of Pizarro's chieftains, the evening before I 
left the school. How I did look ! 

I had a mustache put on with burned cork, 
and whiskers very bushy indeed ; and I had 
the militia coat of an ensign in the town com- 
pany, with the skirts pinned up, and a short 



Zbc ni>ornin0 



sword very dull, and crooked, which belonged 
to an old gentleman who was said to have got 
it from some privateer, who was said to have 
taken it from some great British admiral, in 
the old wars: and the way I carried that sword 
upon the platform and the way I jerked it out, 
when it came to my turn to say — " Battle ! 
battle ! — then death to the armed, and chains 
for the defenseless 1 " — was tremendous ! 

The morning after, in our dramatic hats — 
black felt, with turkey feathers — we took our 
place upon the top of the coach to leave the 
school. The head master, in green spectacles, 
came out to shake hands with us — a very awful 
shaking of hands. 

Poor gentleman ! — he is in his grave now. 

We gave three loud hurrahs " for the old 
school," as the coach started ; and upon the 
top of the hill that overlooks the village, we 
gave another round — and still another for the 
ci-abbed old fellow, whose apples we had so 
often stolen. I wonder if old Bulkeley is liv- 
ing yet ? 

As we got on under the pine trees, T recalled 
the image of the black-eyed Jane, and of the 
other little girl in the corner pew — and thought 



Zhc flDornino 



how I would come back after the college days 
were over — a man, with a beaver hat, and a 
cane, and with a splendid barouche, and how I 
would take the best chamber at the inn, and 
astonish the old schoolmaster by giving hira a 
familiar tap on the shoulder ; and how I would 
be the admiration, and the wonder of the pretty 
girl, in the fur-trimmed hat I Alas, how our 
thoughts outrun our deeds ! 

For long — long years, I saw no more of my 
old school ; and when at length the new view 
came, great changes — crashing like tornadoes 
— had swept over my path ! I thought no 
more of startling the villagers, or astonishing 
the black-eyed girl. No, no ! I was content to 
slip quietly through the little town, with only 
a tear or two, as I recalled the dead ones, and 
mused upon the emptiness of life! 

The Sea 

As I look back, boyhood with its griefs and 
cares vanishes into the proud stateliness of 
youth. The ambition and the rivalries of the 
college life — its first boastful importance as 
knowledge begins to dawn on the wakened 
mind, and the ripe, and enviable complacency 



Zbc flDornitifl 



of its senior dignity — all scud over my mem- 
ory, like this morning breeze along the mead- 
ows ; and like that too, bear upon their wing, 
a chillness — as of distant ice-banks. 

Ben has grown almost to manhood ; Lilly is 
living in a distant home; and Isabel is just 
blooming into that sweet age, where womanly 
dignity waits her beauty ; an age that sorely 
puzzles one who has grown up beside her — 
making him slow of tongue, but very quick of 
heart. 

As for the rest — let us pass on. 

The sea is around me. The last headlands 
have gone down under the horizon, like the 
city steeples, as you lose yourself in the calm 
of the country, or like the great thoughts of 
genius, as you slip from the pages of i)oets, 
into your own quiet reverie. 

The waters skirt me right and left; there is 
nothing but water before, and only water be- 
hind. Above me are sailing clouds, or the 
blue vault, which we call, with childish license 



Zbc flDornino 



L land bird flutters aloft, weary with long fly- 
Qg; and lost in a world where are no forests 
mt the careening masts, and no foliage but 
he drifts of spray. It cleaves awhile to the 
mooth spars, till urged by some homeward 
earning, it bears off in the face of the wind, 
nd sinks, and rises over the angry waters, 
intil its strength is gone, and the blue waves 
;ather the poor flutterer to their cold, and 
[lassy bosom. 

All the morning I see nothing beyond me 
►ut the waters, or a tossing company of 
lolphins ; all the noon, unless some white sail 
-like a ghost, stalks the horizon, there is still 
lothing but the rolling seas ; all the evening, 
fter the sun has grown big and sunk under 
he water line, and the moon risen, white and 
old, to glimmer across the tops of the surging 
cean — there is nothing but the sea, and the 
ky, to lead off thought, or to crush it with 
heir greatness. 

Hour after hour, as I sit in the moonlight 
pon the taffrail, the great waves gather far 
►ack, and break — and gather nearer, and break 
r^uder — and gather again, and roll down swift 
id terrible under the creaking ship, and heave 



Zbc ni>ornin0 



it up lightly upon their swelling surge, and 
drop it gently to their seething, and yeasty 
cradle — like an infant in the swaying arms of 
a mother^or like a shadowy memory, upon 
the billows of manly thought. 

Conscience wakes in the silent nights of 
ocean ; life lies open like a book, and spreads 
out as level as the sea. Regrets and broken 
resolutions chase over the soul like swift- 
winged night-birds, and all the unsteady 
heights and the wastes of action, lift up dis- 
tinct, and clear, from the uneasy, but limi)id 
depths of raeraor3\ 

Yet within this floating world I am upon, 
sympathies are narrowed down ; they cannot 
range, as upon the land, over a thousand ob- 
jects. You are strangely attracted towards 
some frail girl, whose pallor has now given 
place to the rich bloom of the sea life. You 
listen eagerly to the chance snatches of a song 
from below, in the long morning watch. You 
love to see her small feet tottering on the un- 
steady deck ; and you love greatly to aid her 
steps, and feel her weight upon your arm, as 
the ship lurches to a heavy sea. 



u^ 



■»-\lo«»ca n t 



Zbc flDornitifl 



|)on the ocean. Each day seems to revive 
hem ; your morning salutation, is like a wel- 
ome after absence, upon the shore ; and each 
good-night " has the depth and fullness of a 
ind " farewell." And beauty grows upon the 
•cean ; you cannot certainly say that the face 
f the fair girl- voyager is prettier than that of 
sabel ; oh, no I but you are certain that you 
ast innocent, and honest glances upon her as 
ou steady her walk upon the deck, far oftener 
ban at the first ; and ocean life, and sym- 
»athy, makes her kind ; she does not resent 
our rudeness, one-half so stoutly, as she 
light upon the shore. 

She will even linger of an evening — pleading 
irst with the mother, and standing beside you 
-her white hand not very far from yours 
pon the rail — look down where the black 
hip flings off with each plunge, whole gar- 
inds of emeralds ; or she will look up (think- 
iig perhaps you are looking the same way) 
iito the skies, in search of some stars — which 
rere her neighbors at home. And bits of old 
ales will come up, as if they rode upon the 
coan quietude ; and fragments of half-forgot- 
m poems, tremulously uttered — either by rea- 



al3C flDorntno 



son of the rolling of the ship, or some acci- 
dental touch of that white hand. 

But ocean has its storms, when fear will 
make strange, and holy companionship ; and 
even here my memory shifts swiftly and sud- 
denly. 



Zhc flDornino 



e waves crash against the weather-bow like 
ountains, the wind howls through the rig- 
ng, or, as a gasket gives way, the sail belly- 
g to leeward, splits like the crack of a musket, 
hear the captain in the lulls, screaming out 
tiers ; and the mate in the rigging, screaming 
em over, until the lightning comes, and the 
under, deadening their voices, as if they were 
irping sparrows. 

In one of the flashes, I see a hand upon the 
ird-arm lose his foothold, as the ship gives a 
unge ; but his arms are clinched around the 
ar. Before I can see any more, the black- 
)ss comes, and the thunder, with a crash that 
If deafens me. I think I hear a low cry, as 
e mutterings die away in the distance ; and 
e next flash of lightning, which comes in an 
stant, I see upon the top of one of the waves 
ongside, the poor reefer who has fallen. 
le lightning glares upon his face. 
But he has caught at a loose bit of running 
Jgingj 2is he fell ; and I see it slipping off the 
il upon the deck. I shout madly — man over- 
)ard ! — and — catch the rope, when I can see 
thing again. The sea is too high, and the 
.n too heavy for me. I shout, and shout. 



Zbc ni>orning 



and shout, and feel the perspiration startin<^^ in 
great beads from my forehead, as the line slips 
through my fingers. 

Presently the captain feels his way aft, and 
takes hold with me ; and the cook comes, as 
the coil is nearly spent, and we pull together 
upon him. It is desperate work for the sailor ; 
for the ship is drifting at a prodigious rate; 
but he clings like a dying man. 

By and by at a flash, we see him on a crest, 
two oars length away from the vessel. 

" Hold on, my man ! " shouts the captain. 

"For God's sake, be quick!" says the poor 
fellow ; and he goes down in a trough of the 
sea. We pull the harder, and the captain 
keeps calling to him to keep up courage, and 
hold strong. But in the hush, we can hear 
him say — " I can't hold out much longer — 
I'm most gone ! " 

Presently we have brought the man where 
we can lay hold of him, and are only waiting 
for a good lift of the sea to bring him up, 
when the poor fellow groans out — " It's of 
no use — I can't — good-bye!" And a wave 
tosses the end of the rope clean upon the bul- 



Zhc flDornino 



At the next flash, I see him going down 
der the water. 

I grope my way below, sick and faint at 
art; and wedging myself into my narrow^ 
rth, I try to sleep. But the thunder and the 
jsing of the ship, and the face of the drown- 
man, as he said good-bye — peering at me 
)m every corner will not let me sleep. 
Afterwards, come quiet seas, over which we 
om along, leaving in our track, at night, a 
oad path of phosphorescent splendor. The 

lors bustle around the decks, as if they had 
5t no comrade ; and the voyagers losing the 
llor of fear, look out earnestly for the land. 
At length, my eyes rest upon the coveted 
lids of Britain ; and in a day more, the bright 
ce, looking out beside me, sparkles at sight 

the sweet cottages, which lie along the 
een Essex shores. Broad-sailed yachts, look- 
strangely, yet beautifully, glide upon the 
iters of the Thames, like swans; black, 
uare-rigged colliers from the Tyne, lie 
ouped in sooty cohorts; and heavy, three- 
icked Indiamen — of which I had read in 
^ry books — drift slowly down with the tide. 

igy steamers, with white pipes, and with 



Zbc flDornino 



red pipes, whiz past us to the sea, and now, my 
eye rests on the great palace of Greenwich; 
I see the wooden-legged pensioners smoking 
under the palace walls; and above them upon 
the hill — as Heaven is true — that old, fabulous 
Greenwich, the great centre of schoolboy Ion- 



Zbc nDorning 



The Father-Land 
There is a great contrast between the easy 
ishabille of the ocean life, and the prim 
tire, and conventional spirit of the land. In 
e first, there are but few to please, and these 
w are known, and they know us ; upon the 
ore, there is a world to humor, and a world 

strangers. In a brilliant drawing-room 
3king out upon the sight of old Charing 
OSS, and upon the one-armed Nelson, stand- 
; aloft at his coil of rope, I take leave of the 
r voyager of the sea. Her white negligee 
s given place to silks ; and the simple care- 
is coiffe of the ocean, is replaced by the rich 
essing of a modiste. Yet her face has the 
me bloom upon it ; and her eye sparkles, as 
seems to me, with a higher pride ; and her 
tie hand has I think a tremulous quiver in 
(I am sure my own has) — as I bid her adieu, 
d take up the trail of my wanderings into 

heart of England. 
Abuse her, as we will — pity her starving 
asantry, as we may — smile at her court 
geantry, as much as we like — old England, 
dear old England still. Her cottage homes, 

green fields, her castles, her blazing fire- 
46 



Zlic flDorninfi 



sides, her church spires are as old as songs ; 
and by song and story, we inherit them in our 
hearts. This joyous boast, was, I remember, 
upon my lip, as I first trod upon the rich 
meadow of Runnymede ; and recalled that 
Great Charter: wrested from the king, 
which made the first stepping stone towards 



(Tbc flDornins 



no sound reaches me save the occasional clink 
of the smith's hammer, or the hedgeman's bill- 
hook, or the plowman's "ho-tup," from the 
hills. At evening, listening to the nightin- 
gale, I stroll wearily into some close-nestled 
village, that I had seen long ago from a roll- 
ing height. It is far away from the great 
lines of travel — and the children stop their play 
to have a look at me, and the rosy-faced girls 
peep from behind half opened doors. 

Standing apart, and with a bench on either 
side of the entrance, is the inn of the Eagle 
and the Falcon — which guardian birds, some 
native Dick Tinto has pictured upon the 
swinging sign-board at the corner. The 
hostess is half ready to embrace me, and treats 
me like a prince in disguise. She shows me 
through the tap-room into a little parlor, with 
white curtains, and with neatly framed prints 
of the old patriarchs. Here, alone beside a 
brisk fire, kindled with furze, I watch the 
white flame leaping playfully through the 
black lumps of coal, and enjoy the best fare 
of the Eagle and the Falcon. If too late, or 
too early for her garden stock, the hostess be- 
thinks herself of some small pot of jelly in an 



Xlbc flDorning 



I 



JOk flDomind 



The sight of it lends a spur to mj weary 
ep ; and emerging from the wood, I bound 
rer the springy heather. In an hoar, I 
amber a broken wall, and come under the 
owning shadows of the castle. The ivy 
ambers up here, and there, and shakes its 
icropped branches, and its dried berries over 
e heavy portal. I cross the moat, and my 
ep makes the chains of the draw-bridge 
ttle. All is kept in the old state ; only in 
ju of the warder's horn, I pull at the warder's 
jU. The echoes ring, and die in the stone 
urts ; but there is no one astir, nor is there 
light at any of the castle windows. I ring 
fain, and the echoes come, and blend with 
e rising night wind that sighs around the 
rrets, as they sighed that night of murder, 
fancy — it must be a fancy — that I hear an 
vl scream ; I am sure that I hear the crickets 

I sit down upon the green bank of the moat ; 
little dark water lies in the bottom. The 
alls rise from it gray, and stern in the 
jcpening shadows. I hum chance passages 
^facbeth, listening for the echoes — echoes 
m the wall ; and echoes from that far away 



Ebc fl>ornina 



time, when 1 stole the first readij 
tragic storj* 

" Did^st thou uot hear a Dois 
1 ]mit*\ the owl wreamT »"^ ^^^ orickeei 
Did out yoo speak ? 

Wheu ? 

Now, 

Aside 
Ay- 
Harki" 

And the sharp echo comes back- 
Atid at dead of night, in the thatcbl 
under the castle walls, where a dl 
Gaelic woman, in plaid turban, is id 
I wake, startled by the wind, and [ 
bling lips say involuntarily — '* hark 

Again, thn'C months later, I d 
sweet cuiinty of Devon. Its valle}| 
emerald \ its threads of waters strej 
the fields, by their provident 
glisten in the broad glow of sutJ 
skeins of silk. A bland old farm| 
true TSritish stamp, is my host 
days he rides over to the old town 
in a trim, black fnriiiev's cart; and| 
glossy-topi)ed boots, and a broa 



ZlK flDorning 



ite hat. I take a vast deal of pleasure in 
tening to his honest, straightforward talk 
out the improvements of the day and the 
ite of the nation. I sometimes get upon one 

his nags, and ride off with him over his 
lids, or visit the homes of the laborers, 
lich show their gray roofs, in every charm- 
g nook of the landscape. At the parish 
urch, I doze against the high pew backs, as 
listen to the see-saw tones of the drawling 
rate; and in my half wakeful moments, the 
thered holly sprigs (not removed since 
ister) grow upon my vision, into Christmas 
ughs, and preach sermons to me — of the 
ys of old. 

Sometimes, I wander far over the hills into 
leighboring park ; and spend hours on hours 
der the sturdy oaks, watching the sleek 
low deer, gazing at me with their soft liquid 
es. The squirrels, too, play above me, with 
eir daring leaps utterly careless of my 
esence, and the pheasants whir away from 
'f very feet. 

On one of these random strolls — I remember 

very well — when I was idling along, think- 

of the broad reach of water that lav be- 



Zl)c flDornins 



tween rae, and that old forest home — and 
beating off the daisy heads with my cane — I 
heard the tramp of horses coming up one of 
the forest avenues. The sound was unusual, 
for the family, I had been told, was still in 
town, and no right of way lay through the 
park. There they were, however : I was sure 
it must be the family, from the careless way in 
which they came sauntering up. 

First, there was a noble hound that came 
bounding towards me — gazed a moment, and 
turned to watch the approach of the little 
cavalcade. Next was an elderly gentleman 
mounted upon a spirited hunter, attended by a 
boy of some dozen years, who managed his pony 
with a grace, that is a part of the English boy's 
education. Then followed two older lads, and 
a traveling phaeton in which sat a couple of 
elderly ladies. But what most drew my at- 
tention was a girlish figure, that rode beyond 
the carriage, upon a sleek-limbed gray. There 
was something in the easy grace of her atti- 
tude, and the rich glow that lit up her face — 
heightened as it was, by the little black riding 
cap, relieved with a single flowing plume — 
that kept my eye. It was strange, but I 



Zbc flDornino 



lought that I had seen such a figure before, and 
ich a face, and such an eye ; and as I made the 
rdinary salutation of a stranger, and caught 
er smile, I could have sworn that it was she — 
y fair companion of the ocean. The truth 
ashed upon me in a moment. She was to 
isit, she had told me, a friend in the south of 
ngland ; and this was the friend's home ; and 
ne of the ladies of the carriage was her mother; 
ad one of the lads, the schoolboy brother, who 
ad teased her on the sea. 

I recall now perfectly, her frank manner, as 
le ungloved her hand to bid me welcome. I 
Tolled beside them to the steps. Old Devon 
ad suddenly renewed its beauties for me. I 
ud much to tell her, of the little outlying 
ooks, which my wayward feet had led me to : 
nd she — as much to ask. My stay with the 

and old farmer lengthened ; and two days 
ospitalities at the Park ran over into three, 
lid four. There was hard galloping down 

ose avenues; and new strolls, not at all 
)nely, under the sturdy oaks. The long sum- 
ler twilight of England used to find a very 
jippy fellow lingering on the garden terrace — 

)king, now at the rookery, where the belated 



(Tbe HDorning 



birds quarreled for a resting place, and now 
down the long forest vista, gray with distance, 
and closed with the white spire of Mad bury 
church. 

English country life gains fast upon one — 
very fast ; and it is not so easy, as in the drawing- 
room of Charing Cross, to say — adieu ! But it 
is said — very sadly said ; for God only knows 
how long it is to last. And as I rode slowly 
down towards the lodge after my leave-taking, 
I turned back again, and again, and again. I 
thought I saw her standing still upon the ter- 
race, though it was almost dark ; and I 
thought — it could hardly have been an illu- 
sion — that I saw something white waving from 
her hand. 

Her name — as if I could forget it — was Caro- 
line; her mother called her — Carry. I won- 
dered how it would seem for me to call her — 
Carry ! I tried it — it sounded well. I tried 
it — over and over — until I came too near the 
lodge. There I threw a half crown to the 
woman who opened the gate for me. She 
courtesied low, and said — " God bless you, sir ! '* 

I liked her for it; I would have given a 
guinea for it : and that night— whether it was 



(Tbe nDorning 



he old woman's benediction, or the waving scarf 
ipon the terrace, I do not know — but there 
vas a charm upon my thought, and my hope, 
^ if an angel had been near me. 

It passed away though in my dreams ; for I 
reamed that I saw the sweet face of Bella in 
n English park, and that she wore a black- 
elvet riding cap, with a plume ; and I came 
p to her and murmured, very sweetly, I 
hougbt — "Carry, dear Carry!" and she 
tarted, looked sadly at me, and turned away. 

ran after her to kiss her, as I did when she 
at upon my mother's lap, on the day when 
be came near drowning: I longed to tell her, 
s I did then — I do love you. But she turned 
ler tearful face upon me, I dreamed ; and 
hen — I saw no more. 

A Roman Girl 
1 remember the very words — ^^non parlo 



Francese^ Slgnore — I do not speak French, 
5ignor" — said the stout lady — "but my 
laughter, perhaps, will understand you." 

And she called out — " Enrica ! — Enrica ! 
^^nitej subito ! c' e un forestierey 

And the daughter came, her light-brown 



Ubc flDorninfl 



Lair falling carelessly over her shoul 
rich J hazel eye twinkling and full ol 
color coming and going upon her tri 
cheekj and her bosom beav^ing with I 
step. With one hand she put backl 
tered locks that had fallen over her I 
while she laid the other gently upol 
of her mother, and asked in that svi\ 
of the south — *' cosa wlete^ mamma I 

It was the prettiest picture I hal 
many a day \ and this, notwithstandl 
in Rorne^ and had come that verjl 
from tlie Palace of Borghese, I 

Tlie stout lady was my hostesSj andl 
so fair, so young, so unlike in her ll 
other Italian beauties, was my ll 
daughter. The house was one of J 
houses — very J very old which stand I 
eastern side of the Corso, looking oui 
Piazzo di Colonna. The staircases J 
lull, and dirty, and they were narrow I 
Four flights of stone steps led up tl 
ritlor where they lived. A little trI 
the door ; and there was a bell- rope, al 
touch of which, I was almost sure to I 
ping feet run along the stone floor wi 
57 I 



(Tbe flDomino 



en to see the trap thrown slyly back, and 
ose deep hazel eyes looking out upon me ; 
d then the door would open, and along the 
rridor, under the daughter's guidance (until 

ad learned the way), I passed to my lloman 
me. I was a long time learning the way. 
My chamber looked out upon the Corso, and 
could catch from it a glimpse of the top of 
e tall column of Antoninus, and of a frag- 

nt of the palace of the governor. My par- 
-, which was separated from the apartments 

the family by a narrow corridor, looked 
on a small court, hung around with bal- 
nies. From the upper one, a couple of 
ack-eyed girls are occasionally' looking out, 
d they can almost read the title of my book, 
len I sit by the window. Below are three 

four blooming ragazze^ who are dark-eyed, 
d have Roman luxuriance of hair. The 
ungest is a friend of our Enrica, and is of 
urse frequently looking up with all the inno- 
nee in the world, to see if Enrica may be 

king out. 

Night after night, a bright blaze glows upon 
hearth, of the alder faggots which they 

Qg from the Albanian hills. Night after 



(Tbe nDorning 



niglit too, the family come in, to aid my blun- 
dering speech and to enjoy the rich sparkling 
of my faggot fire. Little Cesare, a dark-faced 
Italian boy, takes up his position with pencil 
and slate, and draws by the light of the blaze 
genii and castles. The old one-eyed teacher 
of Enrica, lays his snuflf box upon the table, 
and his handkerchief across his lap, and with 
his spectacles upon his nose, and his big fingers 
on the lesson, runs through the French tenses 
of the verb amare. The father, a sallow-faced, 
keen-eyed man, with true Italian visage, sits 
with his arms upon the elbows of his chair, 
and talks of the pope, or of the weather. A 
spruce count from the Marches of Ancona, 
wears a heavy watch seal, and reads Dante 
vf\i\i furore. The mother, with arms akimbo, 
looks proudly upon her daughter, and counts 
her, as well she ma}^, a gem among the Roman 



ZTbe flDomind 



oftener she coald help me to a word of 

lian. Her face was rich, and full of feeling ; 

greatly to love to watch the puzzled ex- 

sions that passed over her forehead, as the 

of some hard phrase escaped her ; and 

3r still, to see the happy smile, as she 

;ht at a glance, the thought of some old 

elastic Frenchman, and transferred it into 

J liquid melody of her speech. 

the had seen just sixteen summers, and only 

It very autumn was escaped from the thral- 

of a convent, upon the skirts of Rome. 

knew nothing of life, but the life of feel- 

and all thoughts of happiness, lay as yet 

Jier childish hopes. It was pleasant to look 

[n her face ; and it was still more pleasant 

listen to that sweet Roman voice. What a 

flow of superlatives, and endearing di- 

^utives, from those vermilion lips 1 Who 

aid not have loved the study, and who 

lid not have loved — without meaning it — 

teacher ? 

In those days, I did not linger long at the 

lies of lame Pietro in the Via Conditti : but 

"Id hurry back to my little Roman parlor 

e fire was so pleasant ! And it was so 



^be nDornina 



I 



Zhc flDoming 



laugh — a musical laugh — as I bowed my 

to the assault, and recovering from the 

kver of missiles, would turn to throw my 

itest bouquet at her balcony. At night, I 

bid bear home to the Boman parlor, my 

trophy of the day, as a guerdon for 

Ilea ; and Enrica would be sure to render in 

lowledgment, some carefully hidden flow- 

the prettiest that her beauty had won. 

>metimes upon those Carnival nights, she 

[lys herself in the costume of the Albanian 

Br-carriers ; and nothing, one would think, 

lid be prettier, than the laced crimson 

\eij and the strange headgear with its 

[kets, and the short skirts leaving to view 

lelicate an ankle as could be found in Rome. 

3n another night, she glides into my little 

lor, as we sit by the blaze, in a close velvet 

lice, and with a Swiss hat caught up by a 

3let of silver, and adorned with a full-blown 

b — nothing you think could be prettier than 

Again, in one of her girlish freaks, she 

BS herself like a nun ; and with the heavy 

bk serge, for dress, and the funereal veil — 

=»ved only by the plain white ruflBe of her 

-you wish she were always a nun. But 



^be flDorninfl 



the wish vanishes, when you see her in a pure 
white muslin, with a wreath of orange blos- 
soms about her forehead, and a single white 
rose-bud in her bosom. 

Upon the little balcony Enrica keeps a pot 
or two of flowers, which bloom all winter 
long ; and each morning I find upon my table 
a fresh rose-bud ; each night, I bear back for 
thank-oflfering, the prettiest bouquet that can 
be found in the Via Conditti. The quiet fire- 
side evenings come back ; in which my hand 
seeks its wonted place upon her book ; and 
my other, will creep around upon the back of 
Enrica's chair, and Enrica loill look indignant 
— and then all forgiveness. 

One day I received a large packet of letters 
— ah, wluit luxury to lie back in my big arm- 
chair, there before the crackling faggots, with 
the pleasant rustle of that silken dress beside 
me, and run over a second, and a third time, 
those mute paper missives, which bore to me 
over so many miles of water, the words of 
greeting, and of love. It would be worth 
traveling to the shores of the ^Egean, to find 
one's heart quickened into such life as the 



Zl)c flDorniitfl 



her book, and wondered what could be in 
them — and snatched one from my hand, and 
looked with sad, but vain intensity over that 
strange scrawl. What can it be? said she; 
and she laid her finger upon the little half 
line—" Dear Paul." 

I told her it was — " Caro 7nio" 

Enrica laid it upon her lap and looked in my 
face ; " It is from your mother ? " said she. 

" No," said I. 

" From your sister ? " said she. 

" Alas, no ! " 

" II vostro fratello^ dunque t " 

" Nemmeno " — said I " not from a brother 
either." 

She handed me the letter, and took up her 
book; and presently she laid the book down 
ngain ; and looked at the letter, and then at me 
— and went out. 

She did not come in again that evening ; in 
the morning, there was no rose-bud on my 
table. And when I came at night, with a 
bouquet from Pietro's at the corner, she asked 
me — " who had written my letter ? " 

" A very dear friend," said I. 

"A lady ?" continued she. 



^be flDorninfl 



"A lady," said I. 

" Keep this bouquet for her," said she, and 
put it in my hands. 

"But, Enrica, she has plenty of flowers; 
she lives among them, and each morning her 
children gather them by scores to make gar- 
lands of." 

Enrica put her fingers within my hand to 
take again the bouquet ; and for a moment I 



Cbe nDornlnfl 



r But her feelings are those of a girl/' con- 

lued I. 

I* They are not/' said my friend ; and he laid 

band upon my knee, and left off drawing 
Igratns with his cane ; " I have seen, Paul, 
ire than you of this southern nature. The 
Lian girl of fifteen is a woman; an im- 
pioned, Bcnsitive, tender creature — yet still 
roman ; you are loving — if you love — a full- 
Ij^vn heart ; she is loving — if she loves — as a 
e heart should," 

rBut I do not think that either is wholly 
If*/- said L 
j*Try it/* said he, setting his cane down 

ilv, and looking in my face* 
f How ? " returned L 

I have three weeks upon my hands," con- 
l^ied he. " Go with me into the Appenines; 
L e your home in the Corso, and see if you 

forget in the air of the mountains, your 
^ht-ayed Roman girl.-* 

was pondering for an answer, w^hen he 

it on : " It is better so ; love as you might, 

|t southern nature with all its passion, is 

the material to build domestic happiness 

1 ; nor is your northern habit — whatever 



^be flDorniitfl 



you may think at your time of life, the one to 
cherish always those passionate sympathies 
which are bred by this atmosphere, and their 



Woe nDorning 



;ain I asked bim, if be knew a man wbo 

uld serve us as guide among tbe Appenines ; 

1 finding me determined, be sbrugged bis 

oulders, and said be would find one tbe next 

y- 

As I passed out at evening, on my way to 
) Piazzo near tbe Monte Citorio, wbere 
nd tbe carriages tbat go out to Tivoli, 
irica glided up to me, and wbispered — "^lA, 
i displace tanto — tajito^ Signor ! " 

The APPENINE8 

I sbook ber band, and in an bour afterwards 
IS passing, witb my friend, by tbe Trajan 
•urn, towards tbe deep sbadow of San 
aggiore, wbicb lay in our way to tbe raoun- 
ns. At sunset, we were wandering over 
3 ruin of Adrian's villa, wbicb lies upon tbe 
st step of tbe Appenines. Bebind us, tbe 
sper bells of Tivoli were sounding, and their 
hoes floating sweetly under tbe broken 
jhes; before us, stretching all tbe way to 
3 horizon, lay the broad Campagna ; while 
the middle of its great waves, turned violet- 
ored by the hues of twilight, rose the 
uped towers of the Eternal City ; and lord- 



^be flDornlng 



ing it among them all, like a giant, stood the 



Zl)c flDornirtfl 



them down to death ; and the primroses and 
the violets by the mountain path, alone look 
modestly beautiful amid the ruin. 

Sometimes, we loiter in a valley, above 
which the goats are browsing on the cliffs, 
and listen to the sweet pastoral pipes of the 
Appenines. We see the shepherds in their 
rough skin coats, high over our heads. Their 
herds are feeding, as it seems, on ledges of a 
hand's breadth. The sweet sound floats and 
lingers in the soft atmosphere, without a 
breath of wind to bear it away, or a noise 
to disturb its melody. The shadows slant 
more and more as we linger; and the kids 
begin to group together. And as we wander 
on, through the stunted vineyard in the 
bottom of the valley, the sweet sound flows 
after us, like a river of song — nor leaves us, 
till the kids have vanished in the distance, and 
the cliffs themselves, become one dark wall of 
shadow. 

At night, in some little meager mountain 
town, we stroll about in the narrow pass-ways, 
or wander under the heavy arches of the 
mountain churches. Shuffling old women 
grope in and out ; dim lamps glimmer faintly 
70 



^be fl>orning 



Zl)c flDornlnfl 



^\v in the sunshine, we pass a train of mules, 
.ded with wine. We have seen them an 
ur before — little black dots twining along 
3 white streak of foot-way upon the moun- 
n above us. We lost them as we began to 
;end, until a wild snatch of an Appenine 
ig turned our eyes up, and there, straggling 
rough the brush, they appeared again ; a 
>t slip would have brought the mules and 
ne casks rolling upon us. We keep still, 
Iding by the brushwood, to let them pass. 
1 hour more, and we see them toiling slowly 
mule and muleteer — big dots and little dots 
far down where we have been before. The 
n is hot and smoking on them in the bare 
ileys; the sun is hot and smoking on the 
Iside, where we are toiling over the broken 
>nes. I thought of little Enrica, when she 
i<l : " the spring was coming ! " 
Time and again, we sit down together — my 
end and I — upon some fragment of rock, 
der the broad-armed chestnuts, that fringe 
e lower skirts of the mountains, and talk 
rough the hottest of the noon, of the 
Triors of Sylla, and of the Sabine woman — 
oftener — of the pretty peasantry, and of 



Zl)C flDornlng 



the sweet-faced Roman girl. He too tells me 
of his life and loves, and of the hopes that lie 
misty and grand before him : little did we 
think that in so few years, his hopes would be 
gone, and his body lying low in the Adriatic, 
or tossed with the drift upon the Dalmatian 
shores! Little did I think that here under the 
ancestral wood — still a wishful and blundering 
mortal, I should be gathering up the shreds, 
that memory can catch of our Appenine wan- 
dering, and be weaving them into my bachelor 



Zbc flDomittd 



heartened. A snub-looking priest came out 
to condole with us. 

And could Palestrina — the frigidum Prce- 
neste of Horace, which had entertained over 
and over, the noblest of the Colonna, and 
the most noble Adrian — could Palestrina not 
furnish a dinner to a tired traveler ? 

"/Si, Signore^'* said the snub-looking priest. 

"xSi, SignorinOj^ said the neat old lady ; and 
away we went upon a new search. And we 
found bright and happy faces ; especially the 
little girl of twelve years, who came close by 
me as I ate, and afterwards strung a garland 
of marigolds, and put it on my head. Then 
there was a bright-eyed boy of fourteen, who 
wrote his name, and those of the whole family, 
upon a fly-leaf of my book; and a pretty, 
saucy-looking girl of sixteen, who peeped a 
long time from behind the kitchen door, but 
before the evening was gone, she was in the 
chair beside me, and had written her name — 
Carlotta — upon the first leaf of my journal. 

When I woke, the sun was up. From my 
bed I could see over the town, the thin, lazy 
mists lying on the old camp-ground of Pyr- 
rhus; beyond it, were the mountains, which 



Zbc flDornittd 



hide Frascati, and Monte-Cavi. There was old 
Colonna too, that — 

Like an eagle's nest, hangs on the crest 



Zbc nDornittd 



Lgling fiction with fact, I saw the brother 
[Walter de Montreal, with his noisy and 
ptling army, crowd over the Campagna, 

put up his white tents, and hang out his 
Iwy banners, on the grassy knolls that lay 
[rest my eye. 

-But the knolls were all quiet; there 

not so much as a strolling contadino on 
to whistle a mimic fife-note. A little 

from the inn went with me upon the hill, 
jlook out upon the town and the wide sea of 

below ; and whether it was the soft, warm 
ril sun, or the gray ruins below me, or 
3ther the wonderful silence of the scene, or 
ke wild gush of memory, I do not know, but 
kething made me sad. 
\Perche cost j>€7i8€7'080 ! — why so sad?" 

the quick-eyed boy. " The air is beauti- 
the scene is beautiful; Signore is young, 

is he sad ? " 
I And is Giovanni never sad?" said I. 
|(>w(m mai," said the boy, "and if I could 
rel as Signore, and see other countries, I 
lild be always gay." 
1 Alay you be always that ! " said I. 

le good wish touched him ; he took me by 



Zbc flDornittd 



the arms, and said — " Go home with me, Sig- 
nore; you were happy at the inn last night; 
go back, and we will make you gay again ! " 

If we could be always boys ! 

I thanked him in a way that saddened him. 
We passed out shortly after from the city 
gates, and strode on over the rolling plain. 
Once or twice we turned back to look at the 
rocky heights beneath which lay the ruined 
town of Palestrina — a city that defied Rome 
— that had a king before a plowshare had 
touched the Capitoline, or the Janiculan hill ! 
The ivy was covering up richly the Etruscan 
foundations, and there was a quiet over the 
Avhole place. The smoke was rising straight 
into the sky from the chimney tops ; a peasant 
or two, were going along the road with don- 
keys ; beside this, the city was, to all appear- 
ance, a dead city. And it seemed to me that 
an old monk, whom I could see with my glass, 
near the little cliapel above the town, might 
be going to say mass for the soul of the dead 
city. 

And afterwards, when we came near to 
Rome, and passed under the temple tomb of 
Metella — my friend said— "And will you go 



Zbc nDornittd 



ck now to your home ? or will you set off 
th me to-morrow for Ancona ? " 
^^ At least, I must say adieu," returned I. 
" God speed you ! " said he, and we parted 
on the Piazza di Yenezia — he for his last 
iss at St. Peter's, and I for the tall house 
on the Corso. 

Enrica 

I hear her glancing feet, the moment I 
ve tinkled the bell : and there she is, with 
r brown hair gathered into braids, and her 
es full of joy, and greeting. And as I walk 
th the mother to the window to look at 
me pageant that is passing — she steals up 
hind, and passes her arm around me, with a 
ick electric motion, and a general pressure of 
jlcorae — that tells more than a thousand 
:)rds. 

It is a pageant of death that is passing be- 
^v. Far down the street, we see heads thrust 
t of the windows, and standing in bold re- 
f against the red torchlight of the moving 
lin. Below, dim figures are gathering on 
narrow sideways to look at the solemn 
ctacle. A hoarse chant rises louder, and 



Zbc nDorning 



louder; and half dies in the night air, and 
breaks out again with new, and deep bitter, 
ness. 

Now, the first torch-light under us shines 
plainly on faces in the windows, and on the 
kneeling women in the street. First, come old 
retainers of the dead one, bearing long blazing 
flambeaux. Then comes a company of priests, 
two by two, bare-headed, and every second 
one with a lighted torch, and all are chanting. 

Next, is a brotherhood of friars in brown 
cloaks, with sandaled feet; and the red-light 
streams full upon their grizzled heads. They 
add their heavy guttural voices to the chant, 
and pass slowly on. 

Then comes a company of priests in white 
muslin capes, and black robes, and black caps — 
bearing books in their hands, wide open, and 
lit up plainly by the torches of churchly serv- 
itors, who march beside them ; and from the 
books the priests chant loud and solemnly. 
Now the music is loudest; and the friars take 
up the dismal notes from the white-capped 
priests, and the priests before catch them from 
the brow^n-rol)ed friars, and mournfully the 
sound rises up between the tall buildings, into 



Zbe flDornina 



blue night-sky that lies between Heaven 

Rome. 

-^^Vede — Vede/^^ says Cesare; and in a 
;e of the red- torch fire, comes the bier, 

e on the necks of stout friars ; and on the 
, is the body of a dead man, habited like a 
St. Heavy plumes of black wave at each 

er. 

-" Hist," says my landlady, 
he body is just under us. Enrica crosses 
ielf; her smile is for the moment gone, 
ire's boy-face is grown suddenly earnest. 

could see the pale youthful features of the 
1 man. The glaring flambeaux, sent their 
nting streams of unearthly light over the 
visage of the sleeper. A thousand eyes 
e looking on him ; but his face careless of 
all, was turned up, straight towards the 
s. 

till the chant rises ; and companies of 
ists follow the bier, like those who had gone 

re. Friars, in brown cloaks, and prelates 

Carmelites come after — all with torches. 

> by two — their voices growing hoarse — 
V tramp, and chant. 

>r a while the voices cease, and you can 



Zbc riDornino 



hear the rustling of their robes, and their foot- 
falls, as if your ear was to the earth. Then 
the chant rises again, as they glide on in a 
wavy shining line, and rolls back over the 
death-train, like the howling of a wind in 
winter. 

As they pass, the faces vanish from the win- 
dows. The kneeling women upon the pave- 
ment, rise up, mindful of the paroxysm of 
Life once more. The groups in the doorways 
scatter. But their low voices do not drown 
the voices of the host of mourners, and their 



Zbc flDornina 



|he took my hand in hers, and pressed it. 

Italian girl does not fear to talk of death ; 

we were talking of it still, as we walked 

to my little parlor — my hand all the time 

|iers — and sat down by the blaze of my fire. 

was holy week — never had Enrica looked 

be sweetly than in that black dress — un- 

that long, dark veil of the days of Lent. 

3n the broad pavement of St. Peter's — 

3re the people flocking by thousands, made 

side groups about the altars of the vast 

|iple — I have watched her kneeling, beside 

mother — her eyes bent down, her lips 

dng earnestly, and her whole figure trem- 

is with deep emotion. Wandering around 

>ng the halberdiers of the pope, and the 

Irt coats of Austria, and the bare-footed 

Irims with sandal, shell and staflF, I would 

le back again to look upon that kneeling 

are ; and leaning against the huge columns 

I the church, would dream — even as I am 

iming now. 

Lt nightfall, I urged my way into the Sis- 
Chapel : Eurica is beside me — looking 
Ih me upon the gaunt figures of the Judg- 
t of Angelo. They are chanting the Miser- 



^be flDorninfi 



Zbe flDornittd 



)y voice, note by note, the wailings sink into 
he low, tender moan of a single singer — fal- 
ering, tremulous, as if tears checked the ut- 
erance ; and swelling out, as if despair sus- 
ained it. 

It was dark in the chapel when we went 
►ut ; voices were low. Enrica said nothing — 
'. could say nothing. 

I was to leave Rome after Easter ; I did not 
ove to speak of it — nor to think of it. Rome 
—that old city, with all its misery, and its 
alien state, and its broken palaces of the 
mpire — ^grows upon one's heart. The fring- 
ng shrubs of the Coliseum, flaunting their 
blossoms at the tall beggar-men in cloaks, who 
;rub below — the sun glimmering over the 
Qossy pile of the House of Nero — the sweet 
unsets from the Pincian, that make the broad 
dne-tops of the Janiculan, stand sharp and 
lark against a sky of gold, cannot easily be 
eft behind. And Enrica, with her silver- 
►rown hair, and the silken fillet that bound it 
-and her deep hazel eyes — and her white, 
ielicate fingers — and the blue veins chasing 
•ver her fair temples — ah, Easter is too near ! 

But it comes ; and passes with the glory of 



Zbc flDornirtfl 



St. Peter's — lighted from top to bottom. With 
Enrica — I saw it from the Ripetta, as it loomed 
up in the distance, like a city on tire. 

The next day, I bring home my last bunch 
of flowers, and with it a little richly-chased 
Roman ring. No fire blazes on the hearth — 
but they are all there. Warm days have come, 
and the summer air, even now, hangs heavy 



Zbc flDomittd 



plume. I knew she would be there now ; and 
there she was. My eyes dwelt upon the vision, 
very loth to leave it ; and after my eyes had 
lost it, my heart clung to it — there, where my 
memory clings now. 

At noon, the carriage stopped upon the hills, 
towards Soracte, that overlooked Rome. There 
was a stunted pine tree grew a little way from 
the road and I sat down under it — for I wished 
no dinner — and I looked back with strange 
tumult of feeling, upon the sleeping city with 
the gray, billowy sea of the Campagna, lying 
around it. 

I seemed to see Enrica — the Roman girl, in 
that morning dress, with her brown hair in its 
silken fillet ; but the rose-bud that was in her 
bosom, was now in mine. Her silvery voice 
too, seemed to float past me, bearing snatches 
of Roman songs ; but the songs were sad and 
broken. 

After all, this is sad vanity ! thought I : 

jind yet if I had espied then some returning 
carriage going down towards Rome, I will not 
say — but that I should have hailed it, and 
taken a place — and gone back, and to this day 
perhaps — have lived at Rome. 



Zbc nDorning 



But the vetturino called me ; the coach was 
ready — I gave one more look towards the dome 
that guarded the sleeping city : and then we 
galloped down the mountain, on the road that 
lay towards Perugia, and Lake Thrasimene. 

Sweet Enrica ! art thou living yet? 

Or hast thou passed away to that Silent Land, 



Vloon 



moon 

scorch and heat like the bewildering present. 
There are no oak leaves to interrupt the rays 
of the burning now. Its shadows do not fall 
east or west — like the noon, the shade it 
makes, falls straight from sky to earth — 
straight from heaven to hell ! 

Memory presides over the past; Action 
presides over the present. The first lives in a 
rich temple hung with glorious trophies, and 
lined with tombs : the other has no shrine but 
Duty, and it walks the earth like a spirit. 

1 called my dog to me, and we shared 

together the meal that I had brought away at 
sunrise from the mansion under the elms ; and 
now. Carlo is gnawing at the bone that I 
have thrown to him, and I stroll dreamily in 
the quiet noon atmosphere, upon that grassy 
knoll, under the oaks. 

Noon in the country is very still ; the birds 
do not sing; the workmen are not in the 
field ; the sheep lay their noses to the ground ; 
and the herds stand in pools, under shady trees, 
lashing their sides — but otherwise motionless. 
The mills upon the brook, far above, have 
ceased for an hour their labor; and the 
stream softens its rustle, and sinks away from 
2 



moon 

the sedgy banks. The heat plays upon the 
meadow in noiseless waves, and the beech 



floon 

Eablt Friends 

Where are they. 

I cannot sit now, as once, upon the edge of 
the brook hour after hour, flinging off my line 
and hook to the nibbling roach, and reckon it 
great sport. There is no girl with auburn 
ringlets to sit beside me, and to play upon the 
bank. The hours are shorter than they were 
then ; and the little joys that furnished boy- 
hood till the heart was full, can fill it no 
longer. Poor Tray is dead long ago ; and he 
cannot swim into the pools for the floating 
sticks; nor can I sport with him hour after 
hour, and think it happiness. The mound 
that covers his grave is sunken ; and the trees 
that shaded it, are broken and mossy. 

Little Lilly is grown into a woman, and is 
married ; and she has another little Lilly, with 
flaxen hair, she says — looking as she used to 
look. I dare say the child is pretty ; but it is 
not my Lilly. She has a little boy, too, that 
she calls Paul — a chubby rogue — she writes — 
and as mischievous as ever I was. God bless 
the boy I 

Ben — who would have liked to ride in the 
coach that carried me away to school — has 



"ttoon 



VIoon 

— " Yes, that Paul " — says the old woman 
exultingly — " do you know him ? " 

And when I told her — " She would not have 
believed it ! " But she did ; and took hold of 
my hand again (for she was blind) ; and then 
smoothed down the plaits of her apron, and 
jogged her cap strings, to look tidy in the 
presence of "the gentleman." And she told 
me long stories about the old house and how 
other people came in afterwards ; and she called 
me " sir " sometimes, and sometimes " Paul." 
But I asked her to say only Paul ; she seemed 
glad for this, and talked easier; and went on 
to tell of my old playmates, and how we used 
to ride the pony — poor Jacko ! — and how we 
gathered nuts — such heaping piles ; and how we 
used to play at fox and geese through the long 
winter evenings ; and how my poor mother 
would smile — but here I asked her to stop. 
She could not have gone on much longer, for 
I believe she loved our house and people, better 
than she loved her own. 

As for my uncle, the cold, silent man, who 
lived with his books in the house upon the hill, 
and who used to frighten me sometimes with 
his look, be grew very feeble after I had left. 



I^oon 



moon 

of tener from the others, that I felt less eager to 
see them ; or perhaps I wanted to save my best 
visits to the last ; or perhaps (I did think it) 
perhaps I loved Isabel, better than them all. 

So I went into the country, thinking all the 
way how she must have changed since I left. 
She must be now nineteen or twenty ; and then 
her grief must have saddened her face some- 
what ; but I thought I should like her all the bet- 
ter for that. Then perhaps she would notlaugh^ 
and tease me, but would be quieter, and wear 
a sweet smile — so calm, and beautiful,! thought. 
Her figure too must have grown more elegant, 
and she would have more dignity in her air. 

I shuddered a little at this ; for I thought — 
she will hardly think so much of me then ; 
perhaps she will have seen those whom she 
likes a great deal better. Perhaps she will not 
like me at all ; yet I knew very well that I 
should like her. 

I had gone up almost to the house ; I had 
passed the stream where we fished on that day 
many years before ; and I thought that now 
since she was grown to womanhood, I should 
never sit with her there again, and surely 
never drag her as I did out of the water, and 



moon 

never chafe her little hands, and never perhaps 
kiss her, as I did, when she sat upon my 
mother's lap— oh, no — no^no ! 

I saw where we buried Tray, but the old slab 
was gone ; there was no ribbon there now. I 
thought that at least, Isabel would have re- 
placed the slab — but it was a wrong thought. 
I trembled when I went up to the door — for it 
flashed upon me, that perhaps — Isabel was 
married. I could not tell why she should not ; 
but I knew it would make me uncomfortable, 
to hear that she had. 

There was a tall woman who opened the 
door ; she did not know me ; but I recognized 
her as one of the old servants. I asked after 
the housekeeper first, thinking I would surprise 
Isabel. My heart fluttered somewhat, think- 
ing that she might step in suddenly herself — 
or perhaps that she might have seen me coming 
up the hill. But even then I thought she 
would hardly know me. 

Presently the housekeeper came in looking 
very grave ; she asked if the gentleman wished 
to see her ? 

The gentleman did wish it, and she sat down 
on one side of the fire — for it was autumn, and 
9 



floon 

the leaves were falling, and the November 
winds were very chilly. 

Shall I tell her — thought I — who I am, 

or ask at once for Isabel ? I tried to ask ; but 
it was hard for me to call her name ; it was 
very strange, but I could not pronounce it at all. 

" Who, sir ? " said the housekeeper, in a tone 
so earnest, that I rose at once, and crossed 
over and took her hand : " You know me," 
said I — " you surely remember Paul ? " 

She started with surprise, but recovered her- 
self and resumed the same grave manner. I 
thought I had committed some mistake, or been 
in some way cause of oflFense. I called her — 
madame, and asked for — Isabel ? 

She turned pale, terribly pale— " Bella ? " 
said she. 

" Yes, Bella." 

"Sir— Bella is dead!" 

I dropped into my chair. I said nothing. 
The housekeeper — bless her kind heart! — 
slipped noiselessly out. My hands were over 
my eyes. The winds were sighing outside, 
and the clock ticking mournfully within. 

I did not sob, nor weep, nor utter any cry. 

The clock ticked mournfully, and the winds 



moon 

were sighing; but I did not hear them any 
longer; there was a tempest raging within 
me, that would have drowned the voice of 
thunder. 

It broke at length in a long, deep sigh — " Oh, 
God I "—said I. It may have been a prayer — 
it was not an imprecation. 

Bella — sweet Bella was dead ! It seemed as 
if with her, half the world were dead — every 
bright face darkened — every sunshine blotted 
out — every flower withered — every hope ex- 
tinguished ! 

I walked out into the air, and stood under 
the trees where we had played together with 
poor Tray — where Tray lay buried. But it 
was not Tray I thought of, as I stood there 
with the cold wind playing through my hair, 
and my eyes filling with tears. How could 
she die ? Why was she gone ? Was it really 
true ? Was Isabel indeed dead — in her coffin — 
buried ? Then w^hy should anybody live ? 
What was there to live for, now that Bella was 
gone? 

Ah, what a gap in the world is made by the 
death of those we love ! It is no longer whole, 
but a poor half-world, that swings uneasy on 
11 



IHoon 



its RXiBy and makes you dizzy with the clai 
>f its wreck f 

The housekeeper told me all^ — little by lit 
[is I found calmness to listen. She had h 
lead a month ; Lilly was with her throug 
lU ; she died sweetly, without pain^ and w 
:>ut fear — what can angels fear? She 
spoken often of ''Cousin PauP'; she had 

little packet for biiti, but it was not th< 
the had given it into Lilly's keeping. 

Her grave, the housekeeper told me, ' 
>nly a little way off from her home — bei 
the grave of a brother who died long yc 
before, I went there that evening. ' 
bnound was high and fresh. The sods had 
slosed together, and the dry leaves caugh 
the crevices, and gave a ragged and a terr 
look to the grave. The next day I laid tl 
ill smooth — as we had once laid them on 
travo of Tray — I clipped the long grass, \ 
set a tnft of blue violets at the foot, \ 
Iwatered it all with — tears* The homes tc 
the trees, the fields, the meadow^s — in 
|windy November, looked dismally. I cg 
not like them again — I liked nothing but 
ttle mound that I had dressed over Bel 



moon 

grave. There she sleeps now — the sleep of 
death ! 

School Revisited 

The old school was there still — with the 
high cupola upon it, and the long galleries, 
with the sleeping rooms opening out on either 
side, and the corner one, where I slept. But 
the boys are not there, nor the old teachers. 
They have plowed up the playground to 
plant corn, and the apple-tree with the low 
limb, that made our gymnasium, is cut 
down. 

I was there only a little time ago. It was 
on a Sunday. One of the old houses of the 
village had been fashioned into a tavern, and 
it was there I stopped. But I strolled by the 
old one, and looked into tiie bar-room, where 
I used to gaze with wonder upon the enormous 
pictures of wild animals, which heralded some 
coming menagerie. There was just such a 
picture hanging still, and two or three adver- 
tisements of sheriffs, and a little bill of a 
** horse stolen," and — as I thought — the same 
brown pitcher on the edge of the bar. I was 
sure it was the same great wood box that stood 
13 



Doon 

by the fireplace, and the same whip, and great- 
coat hung in the corner. 

I was not in so gay costume, as I once 
thought I would be wearing, when a man ; I 
had nothing better than a rusty shooting 
jacket ; but even with this, I was determined 
to have a look about the church, and see if I 
could trace any of the faces of the old times. 
They had sadly altered the building ; they li»id 
cut out its long galleries, and its old-fashioned 
square pews, and filled it with narrow boxes, 
as they do in the city. The pulpit was not so 
high, or grand ; and it was covered over with 
the work of the cabinet-makers. 

I missed too the old preacher, whom we all 
feared so much ; and in place of him, was a 
jaunty-looking man, whom I thought I would 
not be at all afraid to speak to, or if need be, 
to slap on the shoulder. And when I did 
meet him after church, I looked him in the 
eye as boldly as a lion — what a change was 
that, from the school-days ! 

Here and there, I could detect about the 
church, some old farmer, by the stoop in liis 
shoulders, or by a particular twist in his nose ; 
,and one or two young fellows, who used to 



Doon 

storm into the gallery in my school-days, in 
very gay jackets, dressed off with ribbons — 
which we thought was astonishing heroism, 
and admired accordingly — were now settled 
away into fathers of families ; and looked as 
demure, and peaceable, at the head of their 
pews, with a white-headed boy or two between 
them, and their wives, as if they had been 
married all their days. 

There was a stout man too, with a slight 
limp in his gait, who used to work on har- 
nesses, and strap our skates, and who I al- 
ways thought would have made a capital 
Vulcan — he stalked up the aisle past me, as 
if I had my skates strapped at his shop, only 
yesterday. 

The bald-pated shoemaker, who never kept 
his word, and who worked in the brick shop, 
and who had a son called Theodore — which 
we all thought a very pretty name for a shoe- 
maker's son — I could not find. I feared he 
might be dead. I hoped, if he was, that his 
broken promises about patching boots, would 
not come up against him. 

The old factor of tamarinds and sugar 
crackers who used to drive his covered wagon 
15 



i\ 



Doon 

every Saturday evening into the playground, 
I observed, still holding bis place in the village 
choir ; and singing — though with a tooth or 
two gone — as serenely, and obstreperously as 
ever. 

I looked around the church, to find the 
black-eyed girl who always sat behind the 
choir — the one I loved to look at so much. I 
knew she must be grown up ; but I could fix 
upon no face positively ; once, as a stout 
woman with a pair of boys, and who wore 
a big red shawl, turned half around, I thought 
I recognized her nose. If it was she, it had 
grown red though ; and I felt cured of my 
old fondness. As for the other, who wore 
the hat trimmed with fur — she was nowhere 
to be seen, among either maids, or matrons ; 
and when I asked the tavern-keeper, and de- 
scribed her, and her father, as they were in 
7ny school-days he told me that she had 
married too, and lived some five miles from 
the village ; and said he — " I guess she leads 
her husband a devil of a life I " 

I felt cured of her too but I pitied the 
husband. 

One of my old teachers was in the church ; 
IG 





«« They swept by with a flutter of robes." 



—Page 17 



Nmh 



floon 

I could have sworn to bis face ; he was a 
precise man ; and now I thought he looked 
rather roughly at my old shooting jacket. 
But I let him look, and scowled at him a 
little; for I remembered that he had feruled 
me once. I thought it was not probable that 



t\oon 



Imost babies in bis boyhood — become dash- 
Ig ladies; and to lind those whom he used to 
lok on patronizingly, and compahsionately — 
linking they were Littie girls grown to such 
laturity; that the mere rustle of their silk 
fess will gire him a twinge ; and their eyes 
he looks at them — make him unaccountably 

After service I strolled up by the school 
Jiitdings; I traced the names that we had cut 
bun the fence ; but the fence had grown 
rown with iige, and was nearly rotted away. 
Ipan the beech tree in the hollow behind the 
Iboo!, the carvings were all overgrown. It 
lust have been vacation, if indeed there was 
Jiy schoijl at all ; for I could see only one old 
Ionian about the premises, and she was hang- 
Ig out a dishcloth to dry in the sun. I 
ssed on up the hill, beyond the buildings, 
Ihere in the boy -clays, we built atone forts 
ith bastions and turrets ; but the farmers had 
it the bastions and turrets into their cobble- 
lone walls. At the orchard fence I stopped 
pd looked — from force, I believe, of old habit 
Lto see if anj^^ one were watching — and then 
ped over, and found my way to the early 



Doon 

apple trees; but the fruit had gone by. It 
seemed very daring in me, even then, to walk 
so boldly in the forbidden ground. 

But the old head-master who forbade it, 
was dead ; and Bussell and Burgess, and I 
know not how many others, who in other 
times, were culprits with me, were dead, too. 
When I passed back by the school, I lingered 
to look up at the windows of that corner-room, 
where I had slept the sound, healthful sleep of 
boyhood — and where, too, I had passed many, 
many wakeful hours, thinking of the absent 
Bella, and of my home. 

How small, seemed now, the great 

griefs of boyhood ! Light floating clouds will 
obscure the sun that is but half risen ; but let 
him be up — mid-heaven, and the cloud that 
then darkens the land, must be thick, and 
heavy indeed. 

The tears started from my eyes — was 

not such a cloud over me now ? 

College 

Schoolmates slip out of sight and knowl- 
edge, and are forgotten ; or if you meet them 
they bear another character; the boy is not 
19 



Doon 

there. It is a new acquaintance that you 
make, with nothing of your fellow upon the 
benches, but the name. Though the eye and 
face cleave to your memory, and you meet 
them afterwards, and think you have met a 
friend — the voice or the action will break 
down the charm, and you find only — another 
man. 

But with your classmates, in that later 
school, where form and character were both 
nearer ripeness, and where knowledge labored 
for together, bred the first manly sympathies 
— it is different. And as you meet them, or 
hear of them, the thought of their advance 
makes a measure of your own — it makes a 
measure of the now. 

You judge of your happiness, by theirs — of 
your progress, by theirs, and of your pros- 
pects, by theirs. If one is happy, you seek to 
trace out the way by which he has wrought 
his happiness ; you consider how it differs from 
your own ; and you think with sighs, how you 
might possibly have wrought the same; but 
now it has escaped. If another has won some 
honorable distinction, you fall to thinking, 
how the man — your old equal, as you thought, 
20 



floon 

upon the college benches — has outrun you. It 
pricks to etfort, and teaches the difference be- 
tween now, and then. Life with all its duties 
and hopes, gathers upon your present, like a 
great weight, or like a storm ready to burst. 
It is met anew ; it pleads more strongly ; and 
action that has been neglected, rises before 



Hoon 



ptltog disUBC^j and compare tbeir longilodei 
|nd— part. One I bare met wandering in 

:»uibero Italjv dreaiaing as I was dreaming — 
Uer the tomb of \ irgil, by the dark grotla of 
?au«ilippo. It seemed strange to talk of our 
|ld foldings in Tacitus there upon classic 
rround ; but we did; and ran on to talk of 
lur lives ; and sitting down upon the prom* 
Intory of Bale, looking off upon that blue 
^, as clear as the claiisic^, we told each otber 
lur respective stories. And two nights after, 
jpon the quay, in sight of Yesuvius, which 
Ibed a lurid glow upon the sky, that waa re- 
jected from the white walls of the Hotel de 

tussie, and from the broad lava pavements, 

re parted — be to wander among the isles of 
|he iEgeaWp and I to turn northward, 

Another tirae^ as I was wandering among 
Ihose mysterious figures that crowd the foyer 
]>f the French opera upon a night of the 

[asked Ball, I saw a familiar face: I followed 

with my eye, until I became convinced. He 

llid not know me until I named bis old seat 

lij^on the bench of the division rooms anrl the 

liarti faced Tutor C — ^. Then we talked uf 

le ol<l rivalries, and Christmas jollities, and 



Yloon 

of this and that one, whom we had come upon 
in our wayward tracks; while the black-robed 
grisettes stared through their velvet masks ; 
nor did we tire of comparing the old memories, 
with the unearthly gayety of the scene about 
us, until daylight broke. 

In a quiet mountain town of New England, 
I came not long since upon another : he was 
hale and hearty, and pushing his lawyer work 
with just the same nervous energy, with which 
he used to recite a theorem of Euclid. He 
was father too of a couple of stout, curly- 
pated boys ; and his good woman, as he called 
her, appeared a sensible, honest, good-natured 
lady. I must say that I envied him his wife, 
much more than I had envied my companion 
of the opera — his Domine. 

I happened only a little while ago to drop 
into the college chapel of a Sunday. There 
were the same hard oak benches below, and 
the lucky fellows who enjoyed a corner seat, 
were leaning back upon the rail, after the old 
fashion. The tutors were perched up in their 
side boxes, looking as prim, and serious, and 
important, as ever. The same stout doctor 
read the hymn in the same rhythmical way; 



Ittoon 



he prayed the same prayer, for (I tbought) 

same old sort of sinners. As I shut my 

Is to listeDf it seetued as if the intermediate 

Irs had all gone out ; and that I was on my 

pew bencbf and thinking out those little 

emes for excuses^ or for effort, which were 

believe me^ or to advance me, in my college 

rhera was a pleasure, like the pleasure of 

laming about forgotten joys—in listening 

It he doctor's sermon ; he began in the same 

If embarrassed, half awkward way ; and 

libled at his Bible leaves, and the poor 

:,^hed cushion, as he did long before. But 

I he went on with his rusty and polemic 

jr, the poetry within him would now and 

In warm his soul into a burst of fervid 

Ijuencej and his face would glow and his 

jkd tremble, and the cushion and the Bible 

VQS be all forgot, in the glow of his 

lught^ until with a half cough, and a pinch 

Ihe cushion, he fell back into his strong, but 

idmill argumentation* 

In the corner above, was the stately, white- 
red professor, wearing the old dignity of 
iage, and a smile as bland, as if the years 



floon 

had all been playthings ; and had I seen him 
in his lecture-room, I dare say I should have 
found the same suavity of address, the same 
marvelous currency of talk, and the same in- 
finite composure over the exploding retorts. 

Near him was the silver-haired old gentle- 
man — with a very astute expression — who used 
to have an odd habit of tightening his cloak 
about his nether limbs. I could not see that his 
eye was any the less bright; nor did he seem less 
eager to catch at the handle of some witticism, 
or bit of satire — to the poor student's cost. I 
remembered my old awe of him, I must say, 
with something of a grudge; but I had got 
fairly over it now. There are sharper griefs 
in life, than a professor's talk. 

Farther on, I saw the long-faced, dark- 
haired man, who looked as if he were always 
near some explosive, electric battery, or upon 
an insulated stool. He was, I believe, a man 
of fine feelings ; but he had a way of reducing 
all action to dry, hard, mathematical system, 
with very little poetry about it. I know there 
was not much poetry in his problems in phys- 
ics, and still less in his half-yearly examina- 
tions. But I do not dread them now. 



Yloon 

Over opposite, I was glad to see still, the 
ged head of the kind, and generous old man, 
vho in my day presided over the college ; and 
vho carried with him the affections of each 
ucceeding class — added to their respect for 
lis learning. This seems a higher triumph to 
ae now, than it seemed then. A strong mind, 
»r a cultivated mind may challenge respect ; 
mt there is needed a noble one to win 
.ffection. 

A new man now filled his place in the 
^resident's seat; but he was one whom I 
lad known, and been proud to know. His 
igure was bent, and thin — the very figure 
hat an old Flemish master would have 
hosen for a scholar. His eye had a kind of 
►iercing lustre, as if it had long been fixed on 
►ooks; and his expression — when unrelieved 
}y his affable smile — was that of hard mid- 
light toil. With all his polish of mind, he 
v^as a gentleman at heart: and treated us 
Iways with a manly courtesy that is not for- 
gotten. 

But of all the faces that used to be ranged 
)elow — four hundred men and boys— there 
v^as not one, with whom to join hands, and 



•Woon 

live back again. Their griefs, joy, and toil, 
were chaining them to their labor of life. 
Each one in his thought, coursing over a world 
as wide as my own — how many thousand 
worlds of thought, upon this one world of 
ours! 

I stepped dreamily through the corridors of 
the old Atheneum, thinking of that first fear- 
ful step, when the faces were new, and the 
stern tutor was strange, and the prolix Livy so 
hard. I went up at night, and skulked around 
the buildings, when the lights were blazing 
from all the windows, and they were busy 
with their tasks — plain tasks, and easy tasks — 
because they are certain tasks. Happy fellows 
— thought I — who have only to do what is set 
before you to be done. But the time is coming, 
and very fast, when you must not only do, but 
know what to do. The time is coming, when 
in place of your one master, you will have a 
thousand masters — masters of duty, of busi- 
ness, of pleasure, and of grief — ^giving you 
harder lessons each one of them, than any of 
your Fluxions. 

MoKNiNG will pass, and the Noon will 
come — hot, and scorching. 
27 



noon 

The Packet of Bella 
I have not forgotten that packet of Bella ; I 
lid not once forget it. And when I saw Lilly 
—now the grown-up Lilly, happy in her bouse- 
lold, and blithe as when she was a maiden, 
;be gave it to me. She told me, too, of Bella*s 
Uness, and of her suffering, and of her manner, 
vben she put the little packet in her hand '' for 
>ousin Paul." But this I will not re|)eat — I 
annot. 

I know not why it was, but I shuddered at 
.he mention of her name. There are some 
vho will talk, at table and in their gossip, of 
lead friends; I wonder how they do it? For 
nyself, when the grave has closed its gates on 
he faces of those I love — however busy my 
nournful thought may be, the tongue is silent. 
[ cannot name their names ; it shocks me to 
lear them named. It seems like tearing open 
jalf-healed wounds, and disturbing with harsh, 
vorldly noise, the sweet sleep of death. 

I loved Bella. I know not how I loved her 
—whether as a lover, or as a husband loves a 
vife; I only know this — I always loved her. 
She was so gentle — so beautiful — so confiding, 
hat I never once thought, but that the whole 



noon 

world loved her as well as I. There was only 
one thing I never told to Bella ; I would tell 
her of all my grief, and of all my joys ; I would 
tell her my hopes, ray ambitious dreams, ray 
disappointraents, my anger, and ray dislikes ; 
but I never told her how much I loved her. 

I do not know why, unless I knew that it 
was needless. But I should as soon have 
thought of telling Bella on some winter's day 
— Bella, it is winter — or of whispering to her 
on some balmy day of August — Bella, it is 
summer — as of telling her, after she had grown 
to girlhood — Bella, I love you ! 

I had received one letter from her in the old 
countries; it was a sweet letter, in which she 
tokl me all that she had been doing, and how 
she had thought of me, when she rambled over 
the woods where we had rambled together. 
She had written two or three other letters, 
Lilly told me, but they had never reached me. 
I had told her too of all that made my happi- 
ness ; I wrote her about the sweet girl I had 
seen on shipboard, and how I met her after- 
wards, and what a happy time we passed down 
in Devon. I even told her of the strange 
dream I had, in which Isabel seemed to be in 



Doon 

England, and to turn away from me sadly 
because I called — Carry. 

I also told her of all I saw in that great 
world of Paris — writing as I would write to a 
sister ; and I told her too of the sweet Koman 
girl, Enrica — of her brown hair, and of her 
rich eyes, and of her pretty Carnival dresses. 
And when I missed letter after letter I told 
her that she must still write her letters, or 
some little journal, and read it to me when I 
came back. I thought how pleasant it would 
be to sit under the trees by her father's house, 
and listen to her tender voice going through 
that record of her thoughts, and fears. Alas, 
how our hopes betray us. 

It began almost like a diary, about the time 
her father fell sick. " It is " — said she to Lilly, 
when she gave it to her, " what I would have 
said to Cousin Paul, if he had been here." 

It begins " 1 have come back now to 

father's house ; I could not leave him alone, for 
they told me he was sick. I found him not 
well ; he was very glad to see me, and kissed 
me so tenderly that I am sure, Cousin Paul, 
you would not have said, as you used to say — 
that he was a cold man ! I sometimes read to 



•ttoon 



feeble, and wandering in his mind ; this is very 
dreadful; he calls me sometimes by my mother's 
name ; and when I say — it is Isabel — he says — 
what Isabel ! and treats me as if I was a 
stranger. The physician shakes his head when 
I ask him of father : oh, Paul, if he should 
die— what could I do ? I should die too — I 
know I should. Who w^ould there be to care 
for me ? Lilly is married, and Ben is far off, 
and you, Paul, whom I love better than either, 
are a long way from me. But God is good, 
and he will spare my father. 

. . . " So you have seen again your little 
Carry : I told you it would be so. You tell 
me how accidental it was : ah, Paul, Paul, 
you rogue, honest as you are, I half doubt you 
there ! I like your description of her too — 
dark eyes like mine you say — 'almost as pretty ' j 
well, Paul, I will forgive you that; it is only 
a white lie. You know they must be a great 
deal prettier than mine, or you would never 
have stayed a whole fortnight in an old farmer's 
house, far dow^n in Devon ! I wish I could see 
her : I wish she was here with you now ; for it 
is midsummer, and the trees and flowers were 



Doon 

never prettier. But I am all alone ; father is 
too ill to go out at all. I fear now very much, 
that he will never go out again. Lilly was 
here yesterday, but he did not know her. She 
read me your last letter : it was not so long as 
mine. You are very — very good to me, Paul. 

. . . " For a long time I have written 
nothing : my father has been very ill. and the 
old housekeeper has been sick too, and father 
would have no one but me near him. He can- 
not live long. I feel sadly — miserably ; you 
will not know me when you come home; your 
* pretty Bella ' — as you used to call me, will 
have lost all her beauty. But perhaps you will 
not care for that, for you tell me you have 
found on(3 prettier than ever. I do not know. 
Cousin Paul, but it is because I am so sad, and 
selfish — for sorrow is selfish — but I do not like 
your raptures about the Roman girl. Be care- 
ful, Paul ; I know your heart ; it is quick and 
sensitive ; and I dare say she is pretty and has 
beautiful eyes ; for they tell me all the Italian 
girls have soft eyes. 

" But Italy is far away, Paul ; I can never 
see Enrica ; she will never come here. No — 



Doon 

10, remember Devon. I feel as if Carry was 
i sister now. I cannot feel so of the Roman 
;irl ; I do not want to feel so. You will say 
^his is harsh ; and I am afraid you will not like 
ne so well for it ; but I cannot help saying it. 
[ love you too well, Cousin Paul, not to say it. 

. . . " It is all over I Indeed, Paul, I 
Jim very desolate ! ' The golden bowl is 
broken ■ — my poor father has gone to his last 
bome. I was expecting it ; but how can we 
Bxpect that fearful comer — death ? He had 
been for a long time so feeble, that he could 
scarce speak at all; he sat for hours in his 
3hair; looking upon the fire or looking out 
it the window. He would hardly notice me 
when I came to change his pillows, or to 
smooth them for his head. But before he died 
be knew me as well as ever. ' Isabel,' he said, 
•you have been a good daughter. God will 
reward you ! ' and he kissed me so tenderly, 
ind looked after me so anxiously, with such 
intelligence in his look, that I thought per- 
baps he would revive again. In the evening 
be asked me for one of his books, that he 



•Woon 

loved very much. ' Father,' said I, 'you can- 
not read ; it is almost dark.' 

" ' Oh, yes,' said he ; ' Isabel, I can read 
now.' And I brought it : he kept my hand a 
long while ; then he opened the book — it was 
a book about death. 

" I brought a candle, for I knew he could 
not read without. 

" * Isabel, dear,' said he, ' put the candle a 
little nearer.' But it was close beside him 



Doon 

. . . " I am calmer now ; I am staying 
vith Lilly. The world seems smaller than it 
lid ; but heaven seems a great deal larger : 
here is a place for us all there, Paul — if we 
)nly seek it I They tell me you are coming 
lome : I am glad. You will not like, perhaps, 
,o come away from that pretty Enrica you 
ipeak of ; but do so, Paul. It seems to me 
;hat I see clearer than I did, and I talk bolder. 
Che girlish Isabel you will not find, for I ^m 
nuch older, and my air is more grave; and 
his suffering has made me feeble — very 
'eeble. 

• • • " It is not easy for me to write; but 
[ must tell you that I have just found out who 
;our Carry is. Years ago, when you were 
iway from home, I was at school with her. 
We were always together. I wonder I could 
lot have found her out from your description ; 
)ut I did not even suspect it. She is a dear 
jirl, and is worthy of all your love. I have 
;een her once since you have met her : we 
.alked of you. She spoke kindly — very 
vindly : more than this I cannot tell you, for I 
io not know more. Ah, Paul, may you be 



•Woon 

happy : I feel as if I had but a little while to 
live. 

. . . " It is even so, my dear Cousin Paul 
— I shall write but little more ; my hand trem- 
bles now. But I am ready. It is a glorious 
world beyond this — I know it is ! And there 
we shall meet. I did hope to see you once 
again, and to hear your voice speaking to me 
as you used to speak. But I shall not. Life 
is too frail with me. I seem to live wholly 
now in the world where I am going — there is 
my mother, and ray father, and my little 
brother — we shall meet — I know we shall 
meet ! 

. . . "The last — Paul. Never again in 
this world I I am happy — very happy. You 
will come to me. I can write no more. May 
good angels guard you, and bring you to 
Heaven ! " 

Shall I go on ? 

But the toils of life are upon me. Private 
griefs do not break the force, and the weight 
of the great — present. A life — at best the 




Boon 

If of itj is before me< It ia to be wrought 

t with nerve and work. And — blessed be 
od ! tUure are gleaojs of sunlight upon it. 
bat sweet Carry, doubly dear to me now^ 
at she is joined with my sorrow for the lost 

bei — shall be sought for 1 

And With her sweet image Qoating before 
e^ the Noon wanes, and the shadows of 
VE^*iNu leDgthen upon the land. 



Evening 



EVENING 

The future is a great land : how the lights, 
and the shadows throng over it — bright and 
dark, slow and swift 1 Pride and ambition 
build up great castles on its plains — ^great 
monuments on the mountains, that reach heav- 
enward, and dip their tops in the blue of Eter- 
nity ! Then comes an earthquake — the earth- 
quake of disappointment, of distrust, or of in- 
action, and lays them low. Gaping desolation 
widens its breaches everywhere ; the eye is full 
of them, and can see nothing beside. By and 
by, the sun peeps forth — as now from behind 
yonder cloud — and reanimates the soul. 

Fame beckons, sitting high in the heavens ; 
and joy lends a halo to the vision. A thousand 
resolves stir your heart ; your hand is hot, and 
feverish for action ; your brain works madly, 
and you snatch here, and you snatch there, in 
the convulsive throes of your delirium. Per- 
haps you see some earnest, careful plodder, 
1 



Evening 

nee far behind you, now toiling slowly but 
irely, over the plain of life, until he seems 
ear to grasping those brilliant phantoms 
rhich dance along the horizon of the future ; 
nd the sight stirs your soul to frenzy, and 
ou bound on after him with the madness of a 
Bver in your veins. But it was by no such 
ction, that the fortunate toiler has won his 
rogress. His hand is steady, his brain is cool'; 
is eye is fixed, and sure. 

The Future is a great land ; a man cannot 
o round it in a day ; he cannot measure it 
rith a bound ; he cannot bind its harvests into 

single sheaf. It is wider than the vision, and 
as no end. 

Yet always, day by day, hour by hour, 
Bcond by second, the hard present is elbowing 
s off into that great land of the future. Our 
ouls indeed, wander to it, as to a home-land ; 
hey run beyond time and space, beyond 
lanets and suns, beyond far-off suns and 
omets, until like blind flies, they are lost in 
■lie blaze of immensity, and can only grope 
leir way back to our earth, and our time, by 
lie cunning of instinct. 

Cut out the future — even that little future, 



Evening 

which is the Evening of our life, and what a 
fall into vacuity. Forbid those earnest forays 
over the borders of Now, and on what spoils 
would the soul live ? 

For myself, I delight to wander there, and 
to weave every day, the passing life, into the 
coming life — so closely, that I may be uncon- 
scious of the joining. And if so be that I am 
able, I would make the whole piece bear fair 
proportions, and just figures — like those tapes- 
tries, on which nuns work by inches, and finish 
with their lives ; or like those grand frescoes, 
which poet artists have wrought on the vaults 
of old cathedrals, gaunt and colossal — appear- 
ing mere daubs of carmine and azure, as they 
lay upon their backs, working out a hand's 
breadth at a time — but when complete, show- 
ing — symmetrical, and glorious. 

But not alone does the soul wander to those 
glittering heights where fame sits, with plumes 
waving in zephyrs of applause ; there belong to 
it other appetites, which range wide, and con- 
stantly over the broad future-land. We are 
not merely, working, intellectual machines, 
but social puzzles, whose solution is the work 
of a life. Much as hope may lean towards the 
3 



£venind 

titoxicating joy of distinction, there is another 
eaning in the soul, deeper and stronger, 
owards those pleasures which the heart pants 
or, and in whose atmosphere, the affections 
doom and ripen. 

The first may indeed be uppermost ; it may 
>e noisiest ; it may drown with the clamor of 
aidday, the nicer sympathies. But all our day 
3 not midday ; and all our life is not noise, 
iilence is as strong as the soul ; and there is no 
empest so wild with blasts, but has a wilder lull. 
There lies in the depth of every man's soul, a 
nine of affection, which from time to time 
vill bum with the seething heat of a volcano 
nd heave up lava-like monuments, through all 
he cold strata of his commoner nature. 

One may hide his warmer feelings — he may 
)aint them dimly — he may crowd them out of 
lis sailing chart, where he only sets down the 
larbors for traffic ; yet in his secret heart, he 
vill map out upon the great country of the 
^^uture, fairy islands of love, and of joy. 
There, he will be sure to wander, when his 
oul is lost in those quiet and hallowed hopes, 
vhich take hold on heaven. 

Love only, unlocks the door upon that futur- 



Evening 

ity, where the isles of the blessed lie like stars. 
Affection is the stepping-stone to God. The 
heart is our only measure of infinitude. The 
mind tires with greatness ; the heart — never. 
Thought is worried and weakened in its flight 
through the immensity of space; but love 
soars around the throne of the Highest, with 
added blessing and strength. 

I know not how it may be with others, but 
with me, the heart is a readier and quicker 
builder of those fabrics which strew the great 
country of the Future, than the mind. They 
may not indeed rise so high, as the dizzy pin- 
nacles that ambition loves to rear ; but they 
lie like fragrant islands, in a sea whose ripple 
is a continuous melody. 

And as I muse now, looking towards the 
Evening, which is already begun — tossed as I 
am with the toils of the past, and bewildered 
with the vexations of the present, my affec- 
tions are the architect that build up the future 
refuge. And, in fancy at least, I will build it 
boldly — saddened it may be by the chance 
shadows of evening; but through all, I will 
hope for a sunset, when the day ends, glorious 
with crimson and gold. 
5 



Evening 

Carry 

I said that harsh, and hot as was the pres- 
ent, there were joyous gleams of light playing 
over the future. How else could it be, when 
that fair being whom I met first upon the 
wastes of ocean, and whose name even, is hal- 
lowed by the dying words of Isabel, is living 
in the same world with me? Amid all the 
perplexities that haunt me, as I wander from 
the present to the future, the thought of her 
image, of her smile, of her last kind adieu, 
throws a dash of sunlight upon my path. 

And yet why ? Is it not very idle ? Years 
have passed since I have seen her : I do not 
even know where she may be. What is she to 
me? 

My heart whispers — very much! but I do 
not listen to that in my prouder moods. She 
is a woman, a beautiful woman indeed, whom 
I have knowa once — pleasantly known : she is 
living, but she will die, or she will marry ; I 
shall hear of it by and by, and sigh perhaps — 
nothing more. Life is earnest around me; 
there is no time to delve in the past, for bright 
things to shed radiance on the future. 

I will forget the sweet girl, who was with 



Evening 

me upon the ocean, and think she is dead. 
This manly soul is strong, if we would but 
think so : it can make a puppet of griefs, and 
take down, and set up at will, the symbols of 
its hope. 

But no, I cannot : the more I think thus^ 

the less, I really think thus. A single smile 
of that frail girl, when I recall it — mocks all 
my proud purposes; as if, without her, my 
purposes were nothing. 

Pshaw ! I say— it is idle ! and I bury 

my thought in books, and in long hours of 
toil ; but as the hours lengthen, and my head 
sinks with fatigue, and the shadows of even- 
ing play around me, there comes again that 
sweet vision, saying with tender mockery — is 
it idle? And I am helpless, and am led away 
hopefully and joyfully, towards the golden 
gates which open on the Future. 

But this is only in those silent hours when 
the man is alone, and away from his working 
thoughts. At midday, or in the rush of the 
world, he puts hard armor on, that reflects all 
the light of such joyous fancies. lie is cold and 
careless, and ready for suffering, and for fight. 

One day I am traveling: I am absorbed in 
7 



Evening 

ome present cares — thinking out some plan 
irbich is to make easier, or more successfuly 
be voyage of life. I glance upon the passing 
cenery, and upon new faces, with that careless 
Qdiflference which grows upon a man with 
ears, and above all, with travel. There is no 
rife to enlist your sympathies — no children to 
port with : my friends are few, and scattered ; 
nd are working out fairly, what is before 
hem to do. Lilly is living here, and Ben is 
iving there: their letters are cheerful, con- 
ented letters ; and they wish me well. Griefs 
ven have grown light with wearing; and I 
,m just in that careless humor — as if I said — 
og on, old world — jog on I And the end will 
ome along soon; and we shall get — poor 
levils that we are — just what we deserve ! 

But on a sudden, my eyes rest on a figure 
hat I think I know. Xow, the indifference 
lies like mist ; and my heart throbs : and the 
>ld visions come up. I watch her, as if there 
veve nothing else to be seen. The form is 
lers ; the grace is hers ; the simple dress — so 
leat, so tasteful — that is hers too. She half 
urns her head — it is the face that I saw^ under 
he velvet cap, in the park of Devon. 



Evening 

1 do not rush forward ; I sit as if I were in 
a trance. I watch her every action — the kind 
attentions to her mother who sits beside her — 
her naive exclamations, as we pass some point 
of surpassing beauty. It seems as if a new 
world were opening to me ; yet I cannot tell 
why. I keep my place, and think, and gaze. 
I tear the paper I hold in my hand into shreds. 
I play with my watch chain, and twist the 
seal, until it is near breaking. I take out my 
watch, look at it, and put it back — yet I can- 
not tell the hour. 

It is she — I murmur — I know it is 

Carry ! 

But w^hen they rise to leave, my lethargy is 
broken ; yet it is with a trembling hesitation — 
a faltering as it were, between the present life 
and the future, that I approach. She knows 
me on the instant, and greets me kindly — as 
Bella wrote — very kindly, yet she shows a 
slight embarrassment, a sweet embarrassment, 
that I treasure in my heart, more closely even 
than the greeting. I change my course, and 
travel with them ; now we talk of the old 
scenes, and two hours seem to have made with 
me the difference of half a lifetime. 



Evening 

It is five vears since I parted with her, never 
loping to meet again. She was then a frail 
firi; she is now just rounding into woman- 
lood. Iler eyes are as dark and deep as ever : 
he lashes that fringe them, seem to me even 
onger than they were. Her color is as rich, 
ler forehead as fair, her smile as sweet, as 
hey were before — only a little tinge of sad- 
less floats upon her eye, like the haze ujwn a 
ummer landscape. I grow bold to look upon 
ier, and timid with looking. We talk of 
Jella : she speaks in a soft, low voice, and the 
hade of sadness on her face, gathers — as 
vhen a summer mist obscures the sun. I talk 
n monosyllables ; I can command no other, 
^nd there is a look of sympathy in her eye, 
vlicn I speak thus, that binds my soul to her, as 
lo smiles could do. What can draw the heart 
nto the fulness of love, so quick as sympathy ? 

But this passes ; we must part ; she for her 
lome, and I for that broad home, that has 
>een mine so long — the \vorld. It seems 
iroader to me than ever, and colder than ever, 
nd less to be wished for than ever. A new 
jok of hope is sprung wide open in my life: 




' She is now just rounding into womanhood." 



—Page JO 



Evtnimg 



Evening 



AVe are to meet at some time, not far off, in 
the city where I am living. I look forward 
to that time, as at school I used to look for 
vacation : it is a point d'^appui for hope, for 
thought, and for countless journeyings into the 
opening future. Never did I keep the dates 
better, never count the days more carefully, 
whether for bonds to be paid, or for dividends 



jcvening 



)r deserts — a sorry, pitiful array, that makes 
ne shamefaced when I meet her. And in an 
nstant, I banish them all. And I think, that 
f I were called upon in some high court of 
justice, to siiy why I should claim her indul- 
jence, or her love — I would say nothing of 
uy sturdy effort to beat down the roughnesses 
)f toil — nothing of such manliness as wears a 
;alm front amid the frowns of the world — 
lothing of little triumphs, in the every-day 
ight of life; but only, I would enter the sim- 
)le plea — this heart is hers ! 

She leaves : and I have said nothing of what 
vas seething within me ; how I curse my folly ! 
5he is gone, and never perhaps will return. I 
•ecall in despair her last kind glance. The 
vorld seems blank to me. She does not 
mow ; perhaps she does not care, if I love her. 
kVell, I will boar it. But I cannot bear it. 
Jusiness is broken ; books are blurred ; some- 
hing remains undone, that fate declares must 
)e done. Not a place can I find, but her 
weet smile gives to it, either a tinge of glad- 
less, or a black shade of desolation. 

I sit down at my table with pleasant 
)0<jks; the lire is burning cheerfully; my 
12 



Evening 

dog looks up earnestly when I speak to him ; 
but ' it will never do I Her image sweeps 
away all these comforts in a flood. I fling 
down my book; I turn my back upon my 
dog ; the fire hisses and sparkles in mockery 
of me. 

Suddenly a thought flashes on my brain — I 
will write to her — I say. And a smile floats 
over my face — a smile of hope, ending in 
doubt. I catch up my pen — my trusty pen; 
and the clean sheet lies before me. The paper 
could not be better, nor the pen. I have 
written hundreds of letters ; it is easy to write 
letters. But now, it is not easy. 

I begin, and cross it out. I begin again, 
and get on a little farther — then cross it out. 
I try again, but can write nothing. I fling 
down my pen in despair, and burn the sheet, 
and go to my library for some old sour treatise 
of Shaftesbury, or Lyttleton; and say — talk- 
ing to myself all the while : let her go ! She 
is beautiful, but I am strong ; the world is 
short ; we — I and my dog, and my books, and 
my pen, will battle it through bravely, and 
leave enough for a tombstone. 

But even as I say it, the tears start — it is 
13 



Evening 

ill false saying! And I throw Sbaftesbnry 
Lcross the room, and take up my pen again. 
I glides on and on, as my hope glows, and I tell 
ler of our first meeting, and of our hours in 
he ocean twilight, and of our unsteady step- 
)ing on the heaving deck, and of that parting 
n the noise of London, and of my joy at see- 
ng her in the pleasant country, and of my 
jrief afterwards. And then I mention Bella — 
ler friend and mine — and the tears flow ; and 
hen I speak of our last meeting, and of 
ny doubts, and of this very evening — and how I 
jould not write, and abandoned it — and then 
•elt something within me that made me write, 
ind tell her — all ! — " That my heart was not 
ny own, but was wholly hers ; and that if she 
Yould be mine — I would cherish her, and love 
aer always!" 

Then, I feel a kind of happiness — ^a strange, 
umultuous happiness, into which doubt is 
creeping from time to time, bringing with it a 
;old shudder. I seal the letter, and carry it — 
I great weight — for the mail. It seemed as if 
here could be no other letter that day ; and 
IS if all the coaches and horses, and cars, and 

3ats were specially detailed to bear that 



Evening 



single sheet. It is a great letter for me ; my 
destiny lies in it. 

I do not sleep well that night — it is a tossing 
sleep ; one time joy — sweet and holy joy comes 
to my dreams, and an angel is by me — another 
time the angel fades — the brightness fades, 
and I wake, struggling with fear. For many 
nights it is so, until the day comes, on which 
I am looking for a reply. 

The postman has little suspicion that the 
letter which he gives me — although it contains 
no promissory notes, nor money, nor deeds, 
nor articles of trade — is yet to have a greater 
influence upon my life and upon my future, 
than all the letters he has ever brought to me 
before. But I do not show him this; nor do 
I let him see the clutch with which I grasp it. 
I bear it as if it \vere a great and fearful 
burden, to my room. I lock the door, and 
having broken the seal with a quivering hand 
— read : 

The Letter 

" Paul — for I think I may call you so now 
— I know not how to answer you. Your 
letter gave me great joy ; but it gave me pain, 



Evening 



.00. I cannot — will not doubt what you say : 
! believe that you love me better than I 
leserve to be loved; and I know that I am 
lot worthy of ail your kind praises. But it ia 
lot this that pains me ; for I know that you 
lave a generous heart, and would forgive, aa 
^ou always have forgiven, any weakness of 
nine. I am proud, too, very proud, to have 
von your love ; but it pains me^more, per- 
laps, than you will believe — to think that I 
;annot write back to you, as I would wish to 
vrite— alas, never ! " 

Here I dash the letter upon the floor, and 
vith my hand upon my forehead, sit gazing 
ipon the glowing coals, and breathing quick 
ind loud. The dream, then, is broken ! 

Presently I read again : 

— "You know that my father died before 
VQ had ever met. He had an old friend, who 
lad come from England ; and who in early 
ife had done him some great service, which 
nade him seem like a brother. This old gen- 
leman was my godfather, and called me 
aughter. When my father died, he drew me 



Evening 

to his side, and said: 'Carry, I shall leave 
you, but my old friend will be your father ; ' and 
he put my hand in his, and said : ' I give you 
my daughter.' 

" This old gentleman had a son, older than 
myself ; but we were much together, and grew 
up as brother and sister. I was proud of him ; 
for he was tall and strong, and every one 
called him handsome. He was as kind, too, 
as a brother could be ; and his father was like 
my own father. Every one said, and be- 
lieved, that we would one day be married ; and 
my mother, and my new father spoke of it 
openly. So did Laurence, for that is my 
friend's name. 

" I do not need to tell you any more, Paul ; 
for when I was still a girl, we had promised, 
that we would one day be man and wife. Lau- 
rence has been much in England; and I be- 
lieve he is there now. The old gentleman 
treats me still as a daughter, and talks of the 
time, when I shall come and live with him. 
The letters of Laurence are very kind ; and 
though he does not talk so much of our mar- 
riage as he did, it is only, I think, because he 
regards it as so certain. 
17 



^'I have wished to tell you all this before; 
)ut I have feared to tell you ; I ain afraid I 
lave been too selfish to tell you. And now 
vhat can I say ? Laurence seems most to me 
ike a brother — and you, Paul — but I must 
lot go on. For if I marry Laurence, as 
ate seems to have decided, I will try and love 
lim, better than all the world. 

" But will you not be a brother, and love me, 
IS you once loved Bella — you say my eyes are 
ike hers, and that my forehead is like hers — 
vill you not believe that my heart is like hers, 
.00? 

" Paul, if you shed tears over this letter — 
[ have shed them as well as you. I can write 
10 more now. 

" Adieu." 

I sit long looking upon the blaze ; and when 
; rouse myself, it is to say wicked things 
igainst destiny. Again all the future seems 
'^ery blank. I cannot love Carry as I loved 
3ella ; she cannot be a sister to me ; she must 
)e more, or nothing! Again, I seem to float 
ingly on the tide of life, and see all around 



ine in cheerful groups. Everywhere the buu 
shines, except upon my own cold forehead. 
There seems no mercy in heaven, and no good- 
ness for me upon earth. 

I write, after some days, an answer to the 
letter. But it is a bitter answer, in which I 
forget myself, in the whirl of my misfortunes 



Evcnino 

ose ? My dog keeps by me ; my toils are 
iresent; my fooil is ready; my limbs are 
troiig ; what need for more ? 

Tlie months slip by ; and the cloud that 
loated over my evening sun, passes. 

Laurence wandering abroad, and writing to 
>aroline, as to a sister — writes more than his 
ather could have wished. He has met new 
aces, very sweet faces ; and one which shows 
hrough the ink of his later letters, very gor- 
fcously. The old gentleman does not like to 
ose thus his little Carry ; and he writes back 
ebuke. But Laurence, with the letters of 
Caroline before him for data, throws himself 
ipon his sister's kindness, and charity. It 
.stonishes not a little the old gentleman, to 
ind his daughter pleading in such strange 
vay, for the son. ''And what will you do 
hen, my Carry ? " — the old man says. 

— " Wear weeds, if you wish, sir ; and love 
ou and Laurence more than ever I '' 

And he takes her to his bosom, and says — 
•Carry — Carry, you are too good for that 
vild fellow Laurence!" 

Now, the letters are diflferent ! Xow they 
re full of hope — dawning all over the future 



Evenino 

sky. Business, and care, and toil, glide, as if 
a spirit animated tbem all ; it is no longer cold 
machine work, but intelligent, and hopeful ac- 
tivity. The sky hangs upon you lovingly, and 
the birds make music, that startles you with 
its fineness. Men wear cheerful faces ; the 
storms have a kind pity, gleaming through all 
their wrath. 

The days approach, when you can call her 
yours. For she has said it, and her mother 
has said it ; and the kind old gentleman, who 
says he will still be her father, has said it too; 
and they have all welcomed you — won by her 
story — with a cordiality, that has made your 
cup full, to running over. Only one thought 
comes up to obscure your joy — is it real ? or if 
real, are you worthy to enjoy? Will you 
cherish and love always, as you have promised, 
that angel who accepts your word, and rests 
her happiness on your faith ? Are there not 
harsh qualities in your nature, which you fear 
may sometime make her regret that she gave 
herself to your love and charity ? And those 
friends who watch over her, as the apple of 
their eye, can you always meet their tender- 
ness and approval, for your guardianship of 



Evcnino 



their treasure? Is it not a treasure that 
makes you fearful, as well as joyful ? 

But you forget this in her smile ; her kind- 
ness, her goodness, her modesty, will not let 
you remember it. She/o/'bida such thoughts; 
and you yield such obedience, as you never 
yielded even to the commands of a mother. 
And if your business, and your labor slip 
by, partially neglected — what matters it ? 
What is interest or what is reputation, com- 
pared with that fulness of your heart, which 
is now ripe with joy? 

The day for your marriage comes ; and you 
live as if you were in a dream. You think 
well, and hope well for all the world. A 
flood of charity seems to radiate from all 
around you. And as you sit beside her in the 
twilight, on the evening before the day, whea 
you will call her yours, and talk of the com- 
ing hopes, and of the soft shadows of the 
past; and whisper of Bella's love, and of 
that sweet sister's death, and of Laurence, a 
new brother, coming home joyful with bis 
bride — and lay your cheek to hers — life seems 
as if it were all day, and as if there could be 
no night ! 



Evening 

The marriage passes; and she is yoms — 
yours forever. 

New Travel 

Again I aiu upon the sea; but not alone. 
She whom I first met upon the wastes of 
ocean, is there beside rae. Again I steady her 
tottering step upon the deck; once it was a 
drifting, careless pleasure ; now the pleasure is 
holy. 

Once the fear I felt, as the storms gathered, 
and night came, and the ship tossed madly, 
and great waves gathering swift and high, 
came down like slipping mountains, and s|)ent 
their force upon the quivering vessel, was a 
selfish fear. But it is so no longer. Indeed I 
hardly know fear; for how can the tempests 
harm her ? Is she not too good to suffer any 
of the wrath of heaven ? 

And in nights of calm — holy nights, we lean 
over the ship's side, looking down, as once be- 
fore, into the dark depths, and murmur again 
snatches of ocean song, and talk of those we 
love ; and we peer among the stars, which seem 
neighborly, and as if they were the homes of 
friends. And as the great ocean swells come 



Evcnino 

rocking under us, and carry us up and down 
along the valleys and the hills of water, they 
seem like deep pulsations of the great heart of 
nature, heaving us forward towards the goal of 
life, and to the gates of heaven. 

We watch the ships as they come upon the 
horizon, and sweep towards us, like false 
friends, with the sun glittering on their sails ; 
and then shift their course, and bear away — 
with their bright sails, turned to S|)ots of 
shadow. AVe watch the long-winged birds 
skimming the waves hour after hour — like 
pleasant thoughts — now dashing before our 
bows, and then sweeping behind, until they 
are lost in the hollows of the water. 

Agiiin life lies <»pen, as it did once before; 
but the regrets, disapjmintments, and fruitless 
resolves do not come to trouble nie now. It is 
the future, which has become as level as the 
sra ; and ^/te is beside me — the sharer in that 
future — to look out with me, upon the joyous 
sparkle of water, and to count with nie, the 
dazzling rij)ples, that lie between us and the 
shore. A thousand j)leasant plans come up, 
and are abandoned, like the waves we leave 
behind us; a thousand other joyous plans, 



Evening 

dawn upon our fancy, like the waves that 
glitter before us. We talk of Laurence and 
his bride, whom we are to meet; we talk of 
her mother, who is even now watching the 
winds that waft her child over the ocean ; we 
talk of the kindly old man, her godfather, who 
gave her a father's blessing ; we talk low, and 
in the twilight hours of Isabel — who sleeps. 

At length, as the sun goes down upon a fair 
night, over the western waters which we have 
passed, we see before us, the low blue line of 
the shores of Cornwall and Devon. In the 
night shadowy ships glide past us with gleam- 
ing lanterns ; and in the morning, we see the 
yellow cliflFs of the Isle of Wight ; and stand- 
ing out from the land, is the dingy sail of our 
pilot. London with its fog, roar, and crowds, 
has not the same charms that it once had ; 
that roar and crowd is good to make a man 
forget his griefs — forget himself, and stupefy 
him with amazement. We are in no need of 
sue!) forgetfulness. 

We roll along the banks of the sylvan river 
that glides by Hampton Court; and we toil 
up Richmond Hill, to look together upon that 
scene of water, and meadow — of leafy copses, 



Epcnino 



and glistening villas, of brown cottages, and 
clustered haiulets— of solitary oaks, and loiter- 
ing herds — all spn^ad like a veil of beauty, 
upon the bosom of the Thames. But we can- 
not linger here, nor even under the glorious 
old b«jles of Windsor Forest ; but we hurry on 
to that sweet country of Devon, made green 
with its white skeins of water. 

Again we loiter under the oaks, where we 
have loitered before ; and the sleek deer gaze 
on us with their liquid eyes as they gazed 
before. Thescjuirrcls sport among the boughs 
as fearless as ever ; and some wondering puss 
j>ricks her long ears at our steps, and bounds 
off along the he<lgerows to her burrow. Again 
I see Carry in her velvet riding-cap, with the 
white plume; and I meet as I met her beforey 
under tlie princely trees that skirt the north* 
<'rn avenue. I recall the evening when I 
sauntered out at the j)ark gates, and gained a 
l)lessing from the porter's wife, and dreamed 
that strange dream — now, the dream seems 
more real than my life. **God bless you I" 
said the woman again. 

— *' Ay, old lady, God has blessed me ! '' — and 
I fling her a guinea, not as a gift, but as a debt. 



The bland farmer lives yet ; he scarce knows 
me, until I tell him of my bout around his oat 
field, at the tail of his long stilted plow. I 
find the old pew in the parish church. Other 
holly springs are hung now; and I do not 
doze, for Carry is beside me. The curate 
drawls the service; but it is pleasant to listen; 
and I make the responses with an emphasis, 
that tells more I fear, for my joy, than for my 
religion. Tlie old groom at the mansion in 
the park, has not forgotten the hard riding of 
other days ; and tells long stories (to which I 
love to listen) of the old visit of Mistress 
Carry, when she followed the hounds with the 
best of the English lasses. 

— " Yer honor may well be proud ; for not a 
prettier face, or a kinder heart has been in 
Devon, since Mistress Carry left us." 

But pleasant as are the old woods, full of 
memories, and pleasant as are the twilight 
evenings upon the terrace — we must pass over 
to the mountains of Switzerland. There we 
are to meet Laurence. 

Carry has never seen the magnificence of 
the Juras; and as we journey over the hills 
between Dole, and the border line, looking 



U|Kin the rolling heights shrouded with pine 
trees, and down thousands of feet, at the very 
roadside, u|Njn the cottage roofs, and emerald 
valleys, where the dun herds are feeding 
quietly, she is lost in admiration. At length 
we coine to that p<iint alx»ve the little town of 
(rex, from which you see spread out before 
you, the meadows that skirt Geneva, the 
placid surface of Lake Leman, and the rough, 
shaggy mountains of Savoy — and far behind 
them, breaking the horizon with snowy cap, 
and with dark pinnacles— Mont Blanc, and the 
Needles of Chamouni. 

1 point out to her in the valley below, the 
little town of T'erney, where stands the 
deserted chateau of Voltaire; and beyond, 
uiM>n the shores of the lake, the old home of 
De Stai»l ; and across, with its white walls 
reflected u[)on the bosom of the water, the 
house whenj Hyron wrote the '* Prisoner of 
Chillon." Anjong the grouping roofs of 
Geneva, wo trace the dark cathedral, and the 
tall hotels shining on the edge of the lake. 
And I t(?ll (»f the time, when I tramped down 
through yonder valley, with my future all 
visionary, and bn^ken, and drank the splendor 
28 



Epening 

of the scene, only as a quick relief to the mo- 
notony of my solitary life. 

— " And now, Carry, with your hand locked 
in mine, and your heart mine — yonder lake 
sleeping in the sun, and the snowy mountains 
with their rosy hue seem like the smile of 
nature, bidding us be glad ! " 

Laurence is at Geneva ; he welcomes Carry, 
as he would welcome a sister. He is a noble 
fellow, and tells me much of his sweet Italian 
wife ; and presents me to the smiling, blushing 
— Enrica ! She has learned English now ; she 
has found, she says, a better teacher, than ever 
I was. Yet she welcomes me warmly, as a 
sister might ; and we talk of those old even- 
ings by the blazing fire, and of the one-eyed 
maestro^ as children long separated, might talk 
of their school tasks, and of their teachers. 
She cannot tell me enough of her praises of 
Laurence, and of his noble heart. " You were 
good," she says, " but Laurence is better." 

Carry admires her soft brown hair, and her 
deep liquid eye, and wonders how I could ever 
have left Rome ? 

Do you indeed wonder — Carry ? 

And together we go down into Savoy, to 



fipcnino 



liiit marvelous valley, which lies under the 
ihoulder of Mont lilanc ; and we wander over 
he JAv (/(' 67(//r, and pick alpine roses from 
he edge of the frowning glacier. We toil at 
lightfuU up to the monastery of the Great St. 
3ernard, where the new forming ice crackles 
n the narrow foot-way, and the cold moon 
jlistons over wastes of snow, and upon the 
vindows of the dark Hospice. Again, we are 
LiiKUig the granite heights, whose ledges are 
iiled with ice, uiKjn the Grimsel. The pond 
s <l;irk and cold ; the paths are slippery ; 
he great glacier of the Aar sends down icy 
>iv(»zes, and the echoes ring from rock to rock, 
IS if the ice-god answered. And yet we 
KMther suffer, nor fear. 

In the sweet valley of Meyringen, we part 
roni Laurence : he goes northward, by Grin- 
lenwald, and Thun — thence to journey west- 
vard, and to make for the Roman girl, a home 
)t'yond the ocean. Enrica bids me go on to 
•iome : she knows that Carry will love its soft 
varm air, its ruins, it pictures and temples, 
n^Wi'v than these cold valleys of Switzerland. 
\n«l she gives me kind messages for her 
Mother, and for Cesare ; and should we be in 



fivcnino 



Eorae at the Easter season, she bids us re- 
member her, when we listen to the Miserere, 
and when we see the great Chieaa on fire, and 
when we saunter upon the Pincian hill — and 
remember, that it is her home. 

We follow them with our eyes, as they go 
up the steep height over which falls the white 
foam of the clattering Reichenbach ; and they 
wave their hands towards us, and disappear 
upon the little plateau which stretches towards 
the crystal Kosenlaui, and the tall, still, Engel- 
Horner. 

May the mountain angels guard them. 

As we journey on towards that wonderful 
pass of Splugen, I recall by the way, upon the 
heights, and in the valleys, the spots where I 
lingered years before — here, I plucked a flower, 
there, I drank from that cold, yellow, glacier 
water; and here, upon some rock overlooking 
a stretch of broken mountains, hoary with 
their eternal frosts, I sat musing upon that 
very Future, which is with me now. But 
never, even w^hen the ice-genii were most 
prodigal of their fancies to the wanderer, did 
I look for more joy, or a better angel. 

Afterwards, when all our trembling upon the 



Ipine palbs him gune by* we are roliing along 
Icier Itie clitistniits and lindens that skirt the 
Inks of Camo- We recall that sweet story 
I Manzunii and I i>oint out, as well as I may, 
le loitering place of the braci^ and the track 
I (K>or Dott Abbondio. We follow in the 
lib of the discomfited lieazi, to where the 
IjEity spire, and pinnacles of the Duotna of 
li)an, glisten against the violet sky, 
It'arry longs to see Venice; its wateratreetfi^ 
111 palaces ha^e long floated in her visions. 
I the bustling activity of our owa country, 
111 in the quiet fields of England, that 
lange, half-deserted capital, lying in the 
Llriatic, has taken the strongest bold upoa 
Ir fancy. 

I So we leave Padua^ and Verona behind us, 
Id iind ourselves upon a soft spring noon, 
Ion the end of the iron road which stretches 
Iross the lagoon, towards Venice. With the 
Issing of steam in the ear, it is hard to think 
I the wonderful city, we are approaching* 
Lt as we escape from the carriagCj and set 
If feet down into one of those strange^ 
lar-se-like, ancient boats, with its sharp iron 
>w, and listen to the melodious rolling 



Cvcnino 



tongue of the Venetian gondolier : as we see 
rising over the watery plain before us, all glit- 
tering in the sun, tall square towers with py- 
ramidal tops, and clustered domes, and mina- 
rets ; and sparkling roofs lifting from marble 
walls — all so like the old paintings — and as we 
glide nearer and nearer to the floating wonder, 
under the silent working oar, of our now 
silent gondolier — as we ride up swiftly under 
tlie deep, broad shadows of palaces, and see 
l)lainly the play of the sea water in the crev- 
ices of the masonry — and turn into narrow 
rivers shaded darkly by overhanging walls, 
hearing no sound, but of voices, or the sway- 
ing of the water against the houses — we feel 
the presence of the place. And the mystic 
fingers of the Past, grappling our spirits, lead 
them away — willing and rejoicing captives, 
through the long vista of the ages, that are 
gone. 

Carry is in a trance — rapt by the witchery 
of the scene, into dream. This is her Venice, 
nor have all the visions that played upon her 
fancy, been equal to the enchanting presence 
of this hour of approach. 

Afterwards, it becomes a living thing — steal- 



£vcning 

ng upon the affections, anil uiK>n the imagina- 
ion by a thousand coy advances. We wander 
inder the warm Italian sunlight to the steps 
rom which rolled the white head of poor 
Jarino Faliero. The gentle Carr}^ can now 
hrust her ungloved hand, into the terrible 
ion's mouth. We enter the salon of the fear- 
ul Ten; and peep through the half opened 
loor, into the cabinet of the more fearful 
["hree. We go through the deep dungeons of 
;jarmagnola and of (.'arrara ; and we instruct 
he willing gondolier to push his dark boat 
mder the Bridge of Sighs ; and with Rogers' 
)ocm in our hand, glide up to the prison door, 
ind read of — 

that fearful closet at the foot 



Lurkiiijj: for prey, which, when a victim came, 
Grew lesfi uiid lesH \ contntctiiig to a Hpan 
All iron door, urgeil ouwarcl by a screw, 
Forcinj; out life ! 

I sail, listening to nothing but the dip of the 

{ondolier's oar, or to /ter gentle words, fast 

mder tlie palace door, whicli closed that fear- 

iil morning, on the guilt and shame of Bianca 

Mpello. Or, with souls lit up by the scene, 

34 



£\>ening 

into a buoyancy that can scarce distinguibh 
between what is real and what is merely 
written — we chase the anxious step of the for- 
saken Gorinna; or seek among the veteran 
palaces the casement of the old Brabantio — the 
chamber of Desdemona — the house of Jessica, 
and trace among the strange Jew money- 
changers, who yet haunt the Rialto, the like- 
ness of the bearded Shy lock. We wander into 
stately churches, brushing over grass, or tell- 
tale flowers that grow in the court, and find 
them damp and cheerless ; the incense rises 
murkily, and rests in a thick cloud over the 
altars, and over the paintings ; the music, if so 
be that the organ notes are swelling under the 
roof, is mournfully plaintive. 

Of an afternoon we sail over to the Lido, to 
gladden our eyes with a sight of land and 
green things, and we pass none upon the way, 
save silent oarsmen, with barges piled high 
with the produce of their gardens, — pushing 
their way down towards the floating city. And 
upon the narrow island, we find Jewish 
graves, half covered by drifted sand ; and 
from among them, watch the sunset glimmer- 
ing over a desolate level of water. As we 



jEvcning 



[lide backy lights lift over the Lagoon ^ and 
[ouble along the Guideca, and the Grand Canal. 
Jhe little neighbor isles will have their com- 
lany of lights dancing in the water ; and from 
Imong them, will rise up against the mellow 
[vening sky of Italy, gaunt, iiuligbted houses. 
After the nightfall, which brings no harm* 
|iiL dew with it, 1 stroll, with her hand within 
[ly arm — as once upon the sea, and in the 
Cnglish park, and in the homeland— over that 
[reat square which lies before the palace of 
fL MarkV The white moon is riding in the 
liddle heaven, like a globe of silver; the 
londoliers stritle over the echoing stones ; and 
Jieir long black shadows, stretching over the 
lavement, or shaking upon the moving water, 
pem like great funereal plumes, waving over 
lie bier of Venice- 
Carrying thence whole treasures of thought 
Ind fancy, to feed upon in the after years^ we 
lander to Kome. 

I find the old one-eyed mae^tro^ and am met 

jith cordial welcome by the mother of the 

Iretty Enrica. The count has gone to the 

[larches of Ancona. Lame Pietro still shuffles 

round the boards at the Lepr6j and thi^ flower 



sellers at the corner, bind me a more brilliant 
bouquet than ever, for a new beauty at Rome. 
As we ramble under the broken arches of the 
great aqueduct stretching towards Frascati, I 
tell Carry the story of my trip in the Appe- 
nines ; and we search for the pretty Carlo tta. 
But she is married, they tell us, to a Neapolitan 
guardsman. In the spring twilight, we wan- 
der upon those heights which lie between 
Frascati and Albano ; and looking westward, 
see that glorious view of the Campagna, 
which can never be forgotten. But beyond 
the Campagna, and beyond the huge hulk of 
St. Peter's, heaving into the sky from the 
middle waste, we see, or fancy we see, a 
glimpse of the sea, which stretches out and on 
to the land we love, better than Rome. And 
in fancy, we build up that home, which shall 
belong to us, on the return — a home, that has 
slumbered long in the future; and which, now 
that the future has come, lies fairly before me. 

Home 

Years seem to have passed. They have mel- 
lowed life into ripeness. The start, and change, 
and hot ambition of youth, seem to have gone 



£vcnifi^ 



A e^imk, Mm4 jt/ff^^ 



mm lifce m roKsCe |i 

If r bxne Is m eoUmg^ mtm that 
mM ooee lired. Tte wne vmUer k aroond 
; tfae Mine brook rmlkay aad \mtex% nmier 
gnarled rooCa of tlie €mm^am0Bg tnm^ 
[ihf^ <^>ttage is no hhjcIc oaU^i^ bat a tab- 
ittat, iride^preailiii^ coUag^ with clister- 
^ng gBMes, aod ample shade: such a eoitago 
J tbey baik! opon th^ slopes of Deron. Tines 
eUmber orer it^ and the stooes show nmmy 
tbrrjagh the iaterladiig climbers. There are 
ffiir porcfaai, with cozy armebairs: and gen- 
^nrioii ofieiSr fragrant with mignoiieite, and 
th<^ hlfl« bloatomirig Tioletaw 

The cbimmey stacks rise high, and show 
dif-ar againit the bearr pine trees^ that ward 
fpft ilie blAAtM of w] n ter. The doreooie^ is a hab- 
ited dovecote, and the paqjie-necked pigeons 
^wfxjp around the roofs, in great companies. 
The hawthorn m budding into iti> June fra- 
^ nlong all the linen of fence; and the 
^iat}ii>i arc trim, and clean, Tbe &hnib&— oar 
neglected azalias and rhododendrons chief eat 



£\>cning 

among them — stand in picturesque groups 
upon the close shaven lawn. 

The gateway in the thicket below, is be- 
tween two mossy old posts of stone ; and there 
is a tall hemlock flanked by a sturdy pine, for 
sentinel. Within the cottage, the library is 
wainscoted with native oak; and my trusty 
gun hangs upon a branching pair of antlers. 
My rod and nets are disposed above the gen- 
erous bookshelves; and a stout eagle, once a 
tenant of the native woods, sits perched over 
the central alcove. An old-fashioned mantel 
is above the brown stone jambs of the country 
fireplace; and along it are distributed records 
of travel ; little bronze temples from Rome, the 
pietro duro of Florence, the porcelain busts of 
Dresden, the rich iron of Berlin, and a cup 
fashioned from a stag's horn, from the Black 
Forest by the Rhine. 

Massive chairs stand here and there, in 
tempting attitude ; strewed over an oaken 
table in the middle, are the uncut papers, and 
volumes of the day ; and upon a lion's skin 
stretched before the hearth, is lying another 
Tray. 

But this is not all. There are children in 



jevcning 

the cottage. There is Jamie — wo think him 
liandsonie — for he has the dark hail* of his 
pother — and the same black e}*e, with its long, 
iieavy fringe. There is Carry — little Carry I 

lust call her now — with a face full of glee, 

ind rosy with health ; then there is a Httte 
Irogue some two years old, whom we call Paul 
-a very bad boy — as we tell him. 
The mother is as beautiful as e^er, and far 
|more dear to me; for gratitude has been 

Liddingi year by year, to love. There have 
Ibeen times when a hai'sh woni of mine, uttered 
\in tiio fatigues of business, has touched her; 

ind I have seen that soft eye fill with tears j 
land I have upbraided myself for causing her 
lone pang; But such things she does not re- 
Imember ; or remembersj only to cover with 
|lier gentle forgiveness. 

Laurence and Enrica are living near us. And 
I the old gentleman, who was Carry ^s godfather, 
Isits with me, on sunny days upon the porch, 
land takes little Paul upon his knee, and 
1 wonders if two such daughters as Enrica and 
ICarry are to be found in the world. At twi- 
Ilight we ride over to see Laurence; Jamie 

aounts with the coachman ; little Carry puts 
40 



£\>ening 

on her wide-riniuied Leghorn for the evening 
visit ; and the old gentleman's plea for Paul, 
cannot be denied. The mother too is with us ; 
and old Tray comes whisking along, now- 
frolicking before the horses' heads, and then 
bounding oflf after the flight of some belated 
bird. 

Away from that cottage home, I seem away 
from life. Within it, that broad, and shadowy 
future, which lay before me in boyhood and in 
youth, is garnered — like a fine mist, gathered 
into drops of crystal. 

And when away — those long letters, dating 
from the cottage home, are what tie me to life. 
That cherished wife, far dearer to me now, 
than when she wrote that first letter, which 
seemed a dark veil between me and the future 
— writes me now, as tenderly as tlien. She 
narrates in her delicate way, all the incidents 
of the home life; she tells me of their rides, 
and of their games, and of the new planted 
trees — of all their sunny days, and of their 
frolics on the lawn ; she tells me how Jamie 
is studying, and of little Carry's beauty, 
growing every day, and of roguish Paul — so 
like his father. And she sends such a kiss 



Cvcnfna 



fi*om each of them; ami bids rae such adieu, 
and such " Ood*s ijlessing'^ that it seems as if 
I an angei guarded me. 

But this is not all ; for Jamie has written a 

I postscript ; 

— "Dear father^'* he says, "mother wishes 
I me to tell you how I am ^studying. What 
would you think, father, to have mo talk in 
French to you, wiien you come back ? I wish 
I yuu would coiae buck though ; the hawthorns 
are coming out, and the apricot under my 
window is all full of blossoms. If you should 
bring me a present, as you almostVhvays do 
— I would like a fishing ri>d. 

" i'our atftictionate son, 

"Jamie," 

And little Carry has her fine, rambling 
I characters running into a second postscript : 

" Why don't you come, papa ; you stay too 
h'iVifj;; I have rtilden the pony twice ; once he 

luosit threw me off. This is all from 

"Cakky/' 

And P.uil has taken the pen too, and in his 
extriiririlinary <^fTr^rt to make a big P, has made 
a very big blut. And Jamie writes under it 
42 



£\>enind 



— " This is Paul's work, pa ; but he says it's a 
love blot, only he loves you ten hundred times 
more." 

And after your return Jamie will insist 
that you should go with him to the brook, 
and sit down with him upon a tuft of the 
brake, to fling oflf a line into the eddies, though 
only the nibbling roach are sporting below. 
You have instructed the workmen to spare the 
clumps of bank-willows, that the wood-duck 
may have a covert in winter, and that the 
Bob-o'-Lincolns may have a quiet nesting place 
in the spring. 

Sometimes your wife — too kind to deny 
such favor — will stroll with you along the 
meadow^ banks and you pick meadow daisies 
in memory of the old time. Little Carry 
weaves them into rude chaplets, to dress the 
forehead of Paul, and they dance along the 
greensward, and switch off the daffodils, and 
blow away the dandelion seeds, to see if their 
wishes are to come true. Jamie holds a but- 
tercup under Carry's chin, to find if she loves 
gold ; and Paul, the rogue, teases them, by 
sticking a thistle into sister's curls. 

The pony has hard work to do under 



Carry's swift riding — but he is fed by her own 

land, with the cold breakfast rolls. The nuts 

Ire gathered in tiinej and stored for long 

jinter evenings^ when the tirtj is burning bright 

|nd cheerily — a true, hickory blaze — which 

snds its waving gleams over eager, smiling 

Aces, and over well-stored book shelves, and 

[ortraits of dear, lost ones. While from time 

time, tbat wife, who is the soul of the 

Dene, will break upon the children's prattle, 

nth the silver melody of her voice, running 

iftly and sweetly through the couplets of 

trabbe's stories, or the witchery of the Flod- 

len tale. 

Then the boys will guess conundrums, and 
[lay at fox and geese; and Tray, cherished in 
lis age, and old Milo petted in his dotage, lie 
|de by side, u\K>n the lion's skin, before the 
[lazing beartlK Little Tomtit the goldfinch 
lits sleeping on his perch, or cocks his eye at a 
kidden crackling of the fire, for a familiar 
|c|uint upon our family group. 

But there is no future without its straggling 
|lou<ls. Even now a shadow is trailing along 
le landsca[>e. 
It is a soft and mild day of summer. The 



leaves are at their fullest. A southern breeze 
has been blowing up the valley all the morn- 
ing, and the light, smoky haze bangs in the 
distant mountain gaps, like a veil on beauty. 
Jamie has been busy with his lessons, and 
afterwards playing with Milo upon the lawn. 
Little Carry has come in from a long ride — 
her face blooming, and her eyes all smiles, and 
joy. The mother has busied herself with 
those flowers she loves so well. Little Paul, 
they say, has been playing in the meadow, and 
old Tray has gone with him. 

But at dinner time, Paul has not come back. 

"Paul ought not to ramble oif so far/' I 
say. 

The mother says nothing; but there is a 
look of anxiety upon her face, that disturbs 
me. Jamie wonders where Paul can be, and 
he saves for him, whatever he knows Paul will 
like — a heaping plateful. But the dinner hour 
passes, and Paul does not come. Old Tray 
lies in the sunshine by the porch. 

Now the mother is indeed anxious. And I, 
though I conceal this from her, find my fears 
strangely active. Something like instinct 
guides me to the meadow : I wander down the 



fivcning 



brook side calling — Paul — Paul ! But there is 

I no answer. 

All the aftemcK)!! we search, and the neigh- 

Ibors search ; but it is a fruitless toil* There is 
no joy that evening: the meal passes in 

jsilence; only little Carry with tears in her 

I eyes, asks — if Paul will soon come back ? All 

I the night we search and call : the mother e?en 
braving the night air, and running here and 
there, until the morning finds us sad, and de- 

jspairing. 

That day — the next — cleared up the mys- 

Itery ; but cleared it up with darkness. Poor 
little Paul !^be has sunk under the murderous 
eddies of the brook! His boyish prattle, his 
rosy smiles, his artless talk, are lost to as for- 

lever ! 

I will not tell how nor when we found 

I him : nor will I tell of our desolate home, and 
of Iter grief — the first crushing grief of her 



life. 



The cottage is stilL The servants glitle 
[noiseless, as if they might startle the poor lit- 
tle sleeper. The house seems cold — ver}' cold. 
I Yet it is summer weather; and the south 

m 



breeze plays softly along the meadow, and 
softly over the murderous eddies of the brook. 

Then comes the hush of burial. The kind 
mourners are there : it is easy for them to 
mourn ! The good clergyman prays by the 
bier : " Oh, Thou, who didst take upon Thy- 
self human woe, and drank deep of every pang 
in life, let Thy spirit come and heal this grief, 
and guide towards that better Land, where jus- 
tice and love shall reign, and hearts laden with 
anguish, shall rest for evermore 1 " 

Weeks roll on ; and a smile of resignation 
lights up the saddened features of the mother. 
Those dark mourning robes speak to the 
heart deeper, and more tenderly, than ever the 
bridal costume. She lightens the weight of 
your grief by her sweet words of resignation : 
" Paul," she says, "God has taken our boy ! " 

Other weeks roll on. Joys are still left — 
great and ripe joys. The cottage smiling in 
the autumn sunshine is there: the birds are in 
the forest boughs : Jamie and little Carry arc 
there; and she, who is more than them all, is 
cheerful, and content. Heaven has taught us 
that the brightest future has its clouds — tliat 



Evening 

I his life is a motley of lights and shadows* 
Lud as we look iqwii the world around us^ 
md ui>on the thousand forms of human niiserj'j 
^here is a gladness in our deep thanksgiving, 

A year goes by; but it leaves no added 
khadow on our hearthstone. The vines clam- 
Jicrj and flourish ; the oaks are winning age and 
jrandeur; little Carry is blooming into the 
rretty coyness of girlhood ; and Jamie, with 
lis dark hair, and flashing eyes^ is the pride of 
lis mother 

There is no alloy to pleasure, but the remem- 
jrance of poor little Paul, And even that, 
chastened as it is w ith years, is rather a grate- 
ful memorial that our life is not all here, than 
grief that weighs upon our hearts. 
Sometimes leaving little Carry and Jamie 
to their play, we wander at twilight to the 
pvillow tree, beneath which our drowned boy 
sleeps calmly, for the great Awaking, It is a 
Sunday, in the week day of our life, to linger 
f»y the little grave — to hang flowers upon the 
joad'Stone, and to breathe a prayer that our 
little I'aul may sleep well, in the arms of Him 
kvho loveth children. 

And her heart, and my heart, knit together 



£venind 



by sorrow, as they had been knit by joy — ^a 
silver thread mingled with the gold — follow 
the dead one to the land that is before us; 
until at last we corae to reckon the boy, as 
living in the new home, which when this is 
old, shall be ours also. And my spirit, speak- 
ing to his spirit, in the evening watches, seems 
to say joyfully — so joyfully that the tears half 
choke the utterance — " Paul, my boy, we will 

And the mother, turning her face to mine, so 
that I see the moisture in her eye, and catch 
its heavenly look, whispers softly — so softly, 
that an angel might have said it — "Yes, dear, 
we will be thp:uk!" 



The night had now come, and my day under 
the oaks was ended. But a crimson belt yet 
lingered over the horizon ; though the stars 
were out. 

A line of shaggy mist lay along the surface 
of the brook. I took my gun from beside the 
tree, and my shot-pouch from its limb, and 
whistling for Carlo — as if it had been Tray — I 



£i^enin0 



over the bridge, and down the Jane, 
td house tinder the elms, 
imed pleasant dreams that night — for 
Eid that my reFerie was real 



m 



1