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For one, the youngest, hardly more than boy, With clamor. Downward from his mountain gorge
Brown, looking hardly human, strangely clad, They could not leave him. After he was gone, Muttering and mumbling, idiotlike it seem'd, The two remaining found a fallen stem;
With inarticulate rage, and making signs And Enoch’s comrade, careless of himself,
They knew not what: and yet he led the way Fire-hollowing this in Indian fashion, fell
To where the rivulets of sweet water ran ; Sun-stricken, and that other lived alone.
And ever as he mingled with the crew, In those two deaths he read God's warning “wait." And heard them talking, his long-bounden tongno
Was loosen'd, till he made them understand ; The mountain wooded to the peak, the lawns Whom, when their casks were fill'd they took aboarde And winding glades high up like ways to Heaven, And there the tale he utter'd brokenly, The slender coco's drooping crown of plumes,
Scarce credited at first but more and more, The lightning flash of insect and of bird,
Amazed and melted all who listen'd to it: The lustre of the long convolvuluses
And clothes they gave him and free passage home, That coil'd around the stately stems, and ran But oft he work'd among the rest and shook Ev'n to the limit of the land, the glows
His isolation from him. None of these And glories of the broad belt of the world,
Came from his county, or could answer him, All these he saw; but what he fain had seen If question'd, aught of what he cared to know. He could not see, the kindly human face,
And dull the voyage was with long delays, Nor ever hear a kindly voice, but heard
The vessel scarce sea-worthy; but evermore
His fancy fled before the lazy wind
Drew in the dewy meadowy morniug-breath
of England, blown across her ghostly wall: As down the shore he ranged, or all day long And that same morning officers and men Sat often in the seaward-gazing gorge,
Levied a kindly tax upon themselves, A shipwreck'd sailor, waiting for a sail :
Pitying the lonely man, and gave him it: No sail from day to day, but every day
Then moving up the coast they landed him,
Ev'n in that harbor whence he sail'd before.
There Enoch spoke no word to any one,
But homeward,-home,-what home? had he a homet The blaze upon the waters to the west ;
His home he walk'd. Bright was that afternoon, Then the great stars that globed themselves in Sunny but chill; till drawn thro' either chasm, Heaven,
Where either haven opend on the deeps, The hollower-bellowing ocean, and again
Roll'd a sea-haze and whelm'd the world in gray: The scarlet shafts of sunrise-but no sail.
Cut off the length of highway on before,
And left but narrow breadth to left and right There, often as he watch'd or seem'd to watch, of wither'd holt or tilth or pasturage. So still, the golden lizard on him paused,
On the nigh-naked tree the Robin piped A phantom made of many phantoms moved Disconsolate, and thro' the dripping haze Before him haunting him, or he himself
The dead weight of the dead leaf bore it down,
Last, as it seem'd, a great mist-blotted light
Then down the long street having slowly stolen
In those far-off seven happy years were born;
But finding neither light nor murmur there Once likewise, in the ringing of his ears,
(A bill of sale gleam'd thro' the drizzle) crept Tho' faintly, merrily-far and far away
Still downward thinking “dead or dead to me!" He heard the pealing of his parish bells ; Then, tho' he knew not wherefore, started up
Down to the pool and narrow wharf he went Shuddering, and when the beauteous hateful isle Seeking a tavern which of old he knew, Return'd upon him, had not his poor heart
A front of timber-crost antiquity, Spoken with That, which being everywhere So propt, worm-eaten, ruinously old. Lets none, who speaks with Him, seem all alone, He thought it must have gone; but he was gone Surely the man had died of solitude.
Who kept it: and his widow, Miriam Lane,
With daily-dwindling profits held the house : Thus over Enoch's early-silvering head
A haunt of brawling seamen once, but now The sunny and rainy seasons came and went
Stiller, with yet a bed for wandering men.
There Enoch rested silent many days.
But Miriam Lane was good and garrulous,
Nor let him be, but often breaking in, (She wanted water) blown by bafiling winds Told him, with other annals of the port, Like the Good Fortune, from her destined course, Not knowing-Enoch was so brown, so bow do Stay'd by this isle, not knowing where she lay; So broken-all the story of his house. For since the mate had seen at early dawn
His baby's death, her growing poverty, Across a break on the mist-wreathen isle
How Philip put her little ones to school, The silent water slipping from the hills,
And kept them in it, his long wooing her, They sent a crew that landing burst away
Her slow consent, and marriage, and the birth In search of stream or fount, and fill d the shores of Philip's child: and o'er his countenance
No shadow past, nor motion; any one,
“Too hard to bear! why did they take me thence ? Regarding, well had deem'd he felt the tale
O God Almighty, blessed Saviour, Thou Less than the teller: only when she closed,
That didst uphold me on my lonely isle, * Enoch, poor man, was cast away and lost," Uphold me, Father, in my loneliness Hle, shaking his gray head pathetically,
A little longer! aid me, give me strength Repeated muttering “Cast away and lost;”
Not to tell her, never to let her know. Again in deeper inward whispers " Lost !"
Help me not to break in upon her peace.
My children too! must I uot speak to these ? But Enoch yearn'd to see her face again ;
They know me not. I should betray myself. “If I might look on her sweet face again
Never: no father's kiss for me, -the girl
There speech and thought and nature fail'd a little, Was growing duller twilight, to the hill.
And he lay tranced: but when he rose and paced There he sat down gazing on all below:
Back toward his solitary home again, There did a thousand memories roll upon him, All down the long and narrow street he went Unspeakable for sadness. By and by
Beating it in upon his weary brain,
As tho' it were the burthen of a song,
He was not all unhappy. His resolve
Upbore him, and firm faith, and evermore
Prayer from a living source within the will, For Philip's dwelling fronted on the street, And beating up thro' all the bitter world, The latest house to landward; but behind,
Like fountains of sweet water in the sea, With one small gate that opend on the waste, Kept him a living soul. “This miller's wife," Flourish'd a little garden square and wall'd : He said to Miriam, “that you told me of, And in it throve an ancient evergreen,
Has she no fear that her first husband lives ?" A yewtree, and all round, it ran a walk
“Ay, ay, poor soul," said Miriam, "fear enow! Of shingle, and a walk divided it:
you could tell her you had seen him dead, But Enoch shunn'd the middle walk and stole Why, that would be her comfort:" and he thought, Up by the wall, bebind the yew; and thence “After the Lord has call'd me she shall know, That which he better might have shunn'd, if griefs I wait His time," and Enoch set himself, Like his bave worse or better, Enoch saw.
Scorning an alms, to work whereby to live.
Almost to all things could he turn his hand.
That brought the stinted commerce of those days:
Yet since he did but labor for himself, A later but a loftier Annie Lee,
Work without hope, there was not life in it Fair-hair'd and tall, and from her lifted hand Whereby the man could live; and as the your Dangled a length of ribbon and a ring
Roll'd itself round again to meet the day
Weakening the man, till he could do no more,
The boat that bears the hope of life approach Now when the dead man come to life beheld To save the life despair'd of, than he saw His wife his wife no more, and saw the babe Death dawning on him, and the close of all. Hers, yet not his, upon the father's knee, And all the warmth, the peace, the happiness, For thro' that dawning gleam'd a kindlier hope And his own children tall and beautiful,
On Enoch thinking, "After I am gone,
Then may she learn I loved her to the last."
“Dead," clamor'd the good woman, "hear him talk Which in one moment, like the blast of doom, I warrant, man, that we shall bring you round." Would shatter all the happiness of the hearth. “Swear," added Enoch sternly, "on the book."
And on the book, half-frighted, Miriam swore. He therefore turning softly like a thief,
Then Enoch rolling his gray eyes upon her, Lest the harsh shingle should grate underfoot, “Did you know Enoch Arden of this town?" And feeling all along the garden-wall,
“Know him?" she said, “I knew him far away, Last he should swoon and tumble and be found, Ay, ay, I mind him coming down the street; Crept to the gate, and open'd it, and closed, Held his head high, and cared for no man, he." As lightly as a sick man's chamber-door,
Slowly and sadly Enoch answer'd her: Behind him, and came out upon the waste.
"His head is low, and no man cares for him.
I think I have not three days more to live ; And there he would have knelt, bat that his I am the man." At which the woman gave knees
A half-incredulous, half-hysterical cry. Were feeble, so that falling prone he dug
"You Arden, you! nay,—sure he was a foot His fingers into the wet earth, and pray'd.
Higher than you be.” Enoch said again,
"My God has bow'd me down to what I am; He never meant us anything but good. My grief and solitude have broken me;
But if my children care to see me dead, Nevertheless, know you that I am he
Who hardly knew me living, let them come, Who married – but that name has twice been I am their father; but she must not come, changed
For my dead face would vex her after-life. I married her who married Philip Ray.
And now there is but one of all my blood, Sit, listen." Then he told her of his voyage, Who will embrace me in the world-to-be : His wreck, his lonely life, his coming back, This hair is his: she cut it off and gave it, His gazing in on Annie, his resolve,
And I have borne it with me all these years, And how he kept it. As the woman heard, And thought to bear it with me to my grave: Fast flow'd the current of her easy tears,
But now my mind is changed, for I shall see him, While in her heart she yearn'd incessantly
My babe in bliss: wherefore when I am gone, To rush abroad ali round the little haven,
Take, give her this, for it may comfort her; Proclaiming Enoch Arden and his woes;
It will moreover be a token to her But awed and promise-bounden she forbore,
That I am he." Saying only, “See your bairns before you go!
He ceased; and Miriam Lane Eh, let me fetch 'em, Arden," and arose
Made such a voluble answer promising all,
That once again he rollid his eyes upon her
Repeating all he wish'd, and once again “Woman, Jisturb me not now at the last,
She promised. But let me hoid my purpose till I die.
Then the third night after this, Sit down again; mark me and understand,
While Enoch slumber'd motionless and pale, While I have power to speak. I charge you now, And Miriam watch'd and dozed at intervals, When you shall see her, tell her that I died There came so loud a calling of the sea, Blessmg her, praying for her, loving her ;
That all the houses in the haven rang. Save for the bar between us, loving her
He woke, he rose, he spread his arms abroad As when she laid her head beside my own. Crying with a loud voice “A sail! a sail! And tell my danghter Annie, whom I saw
I am saved ; and so fell back and spoke no more So like her mother, that my latest breath Was spent in blessing her and praying for her. So past the strong heroic soul away. And tell my son that I died blessing him.
And when they buried him the little port And say to Philip that I blest him too;
Had seldom seen a costlier funeral.
With Averill, and a year or two before
Callid to the bar, but ever call'd away
By one low voice to one dear neighborhood,
That shook the heart of Edith hearing him.
Sanguine he was: a but less vivid bue
Than of that islet in the chestnut-bloom
Flamed in his cheek; and cager eyes, that still Here is a story which in rougher shape
Took joyful note of all things joyful, beam'd Came from a grizzled cripple, whom I saw
Beneath a manelike mass of rolling gold, Sanning himself in a waste field alone
Their best and brightest, when they dwelt on hers, Old, and a mine of memories-who bad served, Edith, whose pensive beauty, perfect else, Long since, a bygone Rector of the place,
But subject to the season or the mood, And been himself a part of what he told.
Shone like a mystic star between the less
And greater glory varying to and fro, Sir AYLMER AYLMER, that almighty man,
We know not wherefore ; bouyteously made, The county God-in whose capacious hall,
And yet so finely, that a troublous touch Hung with a hundred shields, the family tree Thinn'd, or would seem to thin her in a day, Sprang from the midriff of a prostrate king- A joyous to dilate, as toward the light. Whose blazing wyvern weathercock'd the spire, And these had been together from the first. Stood from his walls and wing'd his entry-gates Leolin's tirst nurse was, five years after, hers: And swang besides on many a windy sign
So much the boy foreran ; but when his date Whose eyes from under a pyramidal head
Doubled her own, for want of playmates, he Saw from his windows nothing save his own- (Since Averill was a decade and a half What lovelier of his owu had he than her,
His elder, and their parents underground) His only child, his Edith, whom he loved
Had tost his ball and flown his kite, and rollid As heiress and not heir regretfully?
His hoop to pleasure Edith, with her dipt But "he that marries her marries her name
Against the rush of the air in the prone swing, Tbis fiat somewhat soothed himself and wife, Made blossom-ball or daisy-chain, arranged His wife a faded beauty of the Baths,
Her garden, sow'd her name and kept it green Insipid as the queen upou a card :
In living letters, told her fairy-tales,
The little dells of cowslip, fairy palms,
The petty marestail forest, fairy pines, A land of hops and poppy-mingled corn,
Or from the tiny pitted target blew Little abont it stirring save a brook!
What look'd a flight of fairy arrows aim'd
All at one mark, all bitting: make-believes
of battle, bold adventure, dungeon, wreck, And Averill Averill at the Rectory
Flights, terrors, sudden rescues, and true love Thrice over : 80 that Rectory and Hall,
Crown'd after trial; sketches rude and faint, Bound in an immemorial intimacy,
But where a passion yet unborn perhaps
Lay hidden as the music of the moon
And thus together, save for college-times
As ever painter painted, poet sang, Daughters of God; so sleepy was the land.
Or Heav'n in lavish bounty moulded, grew.
Aud more and more, the maiden woman-grown, Ant might not Averill, had he will'd it so, He wasted hours with Averill; there, when first Somewhere beneath his own low range of roofs,
The tented winter-field was broken up Have also set his many-shielded tree?
Into that phalanx of the summer spears There was an Aylmer-Averill marriage once, That soon should wear the garland; there again When the red rose was redder than itself,
When hurr and bine were gather'd ; lastly there And York's white rose as red as Lancaster's, At Christmas: ever welcome at the Hall, With wounded peace which each had prick'd to On whose dull sameness his full tide of youth death.
Broke with a phosphorescence cheering even “Not proven," Averill said, or laughingly,
My lady; and the Baronet yet had laid " Some other race Averills"-prov'n or no, No bar between them: dull and self-involved, What cared her what, if other or the same? Tall and erect, but bending from his height He lean'd not on his fathers but himself.
With half-allowing smiles for all the world, But Leolin, his brother, living oft
And mighty courteous in the main-his pride
Lay deeper than to wear it as his ring
Sir Aylmer half forgot his lazy smile He, like an Aylmer in his Aylmerism,
of patron "Good ! my lady's kinsman! good !" Would care no more for Leolin's walking with her My lady with her fingers interlock'd, Than for his old Newfoundland's, when they ran And rotatory thumbs on silken knees, To loose him at the stables, for he rose
Call'd all her vital spirits into each ear Twofooted at the limit of his chain,
To listen : unawares they flitted off, Roaring to make a third: and how
hould Love, Busying themselves about the flowerage Whom the cross-lightnings of four chance-met eyes That stood from out a stiff brocade in which, Flash into tiery life from nothing, follow
The meteor of a splendid season, the, Such dear familiarities of dawn?
Once with this kinsman, ah so long ago, Seldom, but when he does, Master of all.
Stept thro' the stately minuet of those days:
But Edith's eager fancy hurried with him
Till Leolin ever watchful of her eye
Wife-hunting, as the rumor ran, was he:
I know not, for he spoke not, only shower'd
His oriental gifts on every one
And shook the house, and like a storm he went.
He flow'd and ebb'd uncertain, to return
When others had been tested) there was one, A whisper half reveal'd her to herself.
A dagger, in rich sheath with jewels on it For out beyond her lodges, where the brook Sprinkled about in gold that branch'd itself Vocal, with here and there a silence, ran
Fine as ice-ferns on January panes By sallowy rims, arose the laborers' homes,
Made by a breath. I know not whence at first, A frequent haunt of Edith, on low knolls
Nor of what race, the work; but as he told That dimpling died into each other, huts
The story, storming a hill-fort of thieves At random scatter'd, each a nest in bloom.
He got it; for their captain after fight, Her art, her hand, her counsel all had wrought His comrades having fought their last below, About them: here was one that, summer-blanch'd, Was climbing up the valley; at whom he shot: Was parcel-bearded with the traveller's-joy
Down from the beetling crag to which he clung In Autumn, parcel ivy-ciad ; and here
Tumbled the tawny rascal at his feet,
At once the costly Sahib yielded to her.
And Leolin, coming after he was gone,
Tost over all her presents petulantly: Like visions in the Northern dreamer's heavens, And when she show'd the wealthy scabbard, saying A lily-avenue climbing to the doors ;
“Look what a lovely piece of workmanship!" One, almost to the martin-haunted eaves
Slight was his answer “Well-I care not for it: A summer burial deep in hollyhocks ;
Then playing with the blade he prick'd his hand, Each, its own charm; and Edith's everywhere: “A gracious gift to give a lady, this !" And Edith ever visitant with him,
“But would it be more gracious," ask'd the girl, He but less loved than Edith, of her poor:
“Were I to give this gift of his to one For she—so lowly-lovely and so loving,
That is no lady?” “Gracious ? No," said he. Queenly responsive when the loyal hand
"Me?-but I cared not for it. O pardon me,
For I am more ungracious ev'n than you,
I care not for it either;" and he said of comfort and an open hand of help,
"Why then I love it:" but Sir Aylmer past, A splendid presence flattering the poor roofs And neither loved nor liked the thing he heard. Revered as theirs, but kindlier than themselves To ailing wife or wailing infancy
The next day came a neighbor. Blues and reds Or old bedridden palsy, -was adored ;
They talk'd of: blues were sure of it, he thought: Hé, loved for her and for himself. A grasp
Then of the latest fox-where started-killid
My Peter, first:" and did Sir Aylmer know
That great pock-pitten fellow had been caught ? Were no false passport to that easy realm,
Then made his pleasure echo, hand to hand, Where once with Leolin at her side the girl, And rolling as it were the substance of it Nursing a child, and turning to the warmth Between his palms a moment up and down, The tender pink five-beaded baby-soles,
“ The birds were warm, the birds were warm upon Heard the good mother softly whisper “Bless, God bless 'em; marriages are made in Heaven." We have him now:" and had Sir Aylmer heard
Nay, but he must-the land was ringing of itA flash of semi-jealonsy clear'd it to her.
This blacksmith-border marriage-one they knew My Lady's Indian kinsman unannounced
Raw from the nursery-who could trust a child ! With half a score of swarthy faces came.
That cursed France with her egalities ! His own, tho' keen and bold and soldierly,
And did Sir Aylmer (deferentially Sear' 1 by the close ecliptic, was not fair;
With nearing chair and lower'd accent) thinkFairer his talk, a tongue that rnled the hour, For people talk'd—that it was wholly wise Tho' seeming boastful: so when first he dash'd To let that handsome fellow Averill walk into the chronicle of a deedful day,
So freely with his daughter? people talk'd