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They have left the doors ajar; and by

their clash, And prelude on the keys, I know the

song, Their favourite -- which I call The Tables

Evelyn begins it “O diviner Air.'


And the stately Spanish men to their

flagship bore him then, Where they laid him by the mast, old

Sir Richard caught at last, And they praised him to his face with

their courtly foreign grace; But he rose upon their decks, and he cried : I have fought for Queen and Faith like

a valiant man and true; I have only done my duty as a man is

bound to do: With a joyful spirit I Sir Richard Gren

ville die!' And he fell upon their decks, and he died.

O diviner Air,
Thro' the heat, the drowth, the dust, the

glare, Far from out the west in shadowing

Over all the meadow baked and bare,
Making fresh and fair
All the bowers and the flowers,
Fainting flowers, faded bowers,
Over all this weary world of ours,
Breathe, diviner Air!


A sweet voice that -- you scarce could

better that. Now follows Edith echoing Evelyn.


And they stared at the dead that had

been so valiant and true, And had bolden the power and glory of

Spain so cheap That he dared her with one little ship

and his English few; Was he devil or man? He was devil

for aught they knew, But they sank his body with honour down

into the deep, And they mann'd the Revenge with a

swarthier alien crew, And a way she sail'd with her loss and

long'd for her own; When a wind from the lands they had

ruin'd awoke from sleep, And the water began to heave and the

weather to moan,

O divirer light,
Thro' the cloud that roofs our noon with

night, Thro' the blotting mist, the blinding

showers, Far from out a sky for ever bright, Over all the woodland's flooded bowers, Over all the meadow's drowning flowers, Over all this ruin'd world of ours, Break, diviner light!

On whom I broug

ness, That time I did no

Mas seem — with

reason for it Fossible--at first Lint in a moment

sben first I came on lake Lla A poobless night

ning fork


Ui lake and mout


Marvellously like, their voices — and

themselves ! Tho' one is somewhat deeper than the

other, As one is somewhat graver than the

other — Edith than Evelyn. Your good Uncle,

whom You count the father of your fortune,

longs For this alliance: let me ask you then, Which voice most takes you? for I do

not doubt Being a watchful parent, you are taken With one or other: tho' sometimes I

fear You may be flickering, fluttering in a

Between the two which must not be -

which might
Be death to one: they both are beautiful:
Evelyn gayer, wittier, prettier, says
The common voice, if one may trust it :

No! but the paler and the graver, Edith,
Woo her and gain her then: no waver-

ing, boy!
The graver is perhaps the one for you
Who jest and laugh so easily and so well.
For love will go by contrast, as by likes.

No sisters ever prized each other more.
Not so: their mother and her sister loved
More passionately still.

But that my best And oldest friend, your Uncle, wishes it, And that I know you worthy everyway To be my son, I might, perchance, be loath To part them, or part from them: and

yet one Should marry, or all the broad lands in

The Sun himsel

for me. Not quite so quick! for look you here

deep, And like the criti

And once my prattling Edith ask'd him

Ay, why? said he, .for why should I go

Then told them of his wars, and of his

For see-

- this wine — the grape from

whence it flow'd
Was blackening on the slopes of Portugal,
When that brave soldier, down the terrible

Plunged in the last fierce charge at

And caught the laming bullet. He left Pah'd out the las
Which yet retains a memory of its youth, The fol day after,

me this,
As I of mine, and my first passion. That less than mom

Here's to your happy union with my child!
Yet must you change your name: no

fault of mine!
You say that you can do it as willingly
As birds make ready for their bridal-

By change of feather: for all that, my
Some birds are sick and sullen when they The seriest beactie


An old and worthy name! but mine that

Among our civil wars and earlier too
Among the Roses, the more venerable.
I care not for a name — no fault of mine.
Once more-- a happier marriage than my

You see yon Lombard poplar on the

The highway running by it leaves a breadth
Of sward to left and right, where, long our lex Forest

One bright May morning in a world of

I lay at leisure, watching overhead
The aërial poplar wave, an amber spire.

I dozed; I woke. An open landaulet
Whirld by, which, after it had past me,

Turning my way, the loveliest face on

The face of one there sitting opposite,


The darkest faults:

the lips Seem but a gash. li Edith -- Do, the

So that bright

sense and so

Har by the poplar long after, as it


Tree-howers, and

beechen but

The phantom of the

your view

for ever past me

From this bay window — which our house

has held Three hundred years

will pass collater. ally.

peal Of laughter drev

ing glades

My father with a child on either knee, A hand upon the head of either child, Smoothing their locks, as golden as his

Down to the snow infern and forg My Rosalind in this The bloom of a happiness

, And moved to me


Were silver, 'get them wedded' would

he say

There one of those about her knowing

the On whom I brought a strange unhappi

ness, Show That time I did not see.


Love at first sight May seem with goodly rhyme and

reason for it Possible

at first glimpse, and for a face Gone in a moment — strange. Yet once,

when first I came on lake Llanberris in the dark, de A moonless night with storm - one light

ning-fork Flash'd out the lake; and tho' I loiter'd

there The full day after, yet in retrospect That less than momentary thunder-sketch Of lake and mountain conquers all the


Call'd me to join them; so with these I

spent What seem'd my crowning hour, my day

of days. I woo'd her then, nor unsuccessfully, The worse for her, for me! was I content? Ay — no, not quite; for now and then I

thought Laziness, vague love-longings, the bright

May, Had made a heated haze to magnify The charm of Edith - that a man's ideal Is high in Heaven, and lodged with

Plato's God, Not findable here – content, and not con

tent, In some such fashion as a man may be That having had the portrait of his friend Drawn by an artist, looks at it, and says, "Good! very like! not altogether he.'

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So that bright face was flash'd thro'

sense and soul And by the poplar vanish'd — to be found Long after, as it seem’d, beneath the

tall Tree-bowers, and those long-sweeping

beechen boughs Of our New Forest. I was there alone: The phantom of the whirling landaulet For ever past me by: when one quick

peal Of laughter drew me thro' the glimmer

ing glades Down to the snowlike sparkle of a cloth On fern and foxglove. Lo, the face again, My Rosalind in this Arden - Edith — all One bloom of youth, health, beauty,

happiness, And moved to merriment at a passing


As yet I had not bound myself by

words, Only believing I loved Edith, made Edith love me. Then came the day

when I, Flattering myself that all my doubts were

fools Born of the fool this Age that doubts of

all Not I that day of Edith's love or mine Had braced my purpose to declare my

self: I stood upon the stairs of Paradise. The golden gates would open at a word. I spoke it - told her of my passion, seen And lost and found again, had got so

far, Had caught her hand, her eyelids fell

I heard Wheels, and a noise of welcome at the

doors On a sudden after two Italian years Had set the blossom of her health again, The younger sister, Evelyn, enter'd —

there, There was the face, and altogether she. The mother fell about the daughter's

neck, The sisters closed in one another's arms,


Their people throng'd about them from

the hall, And in the thick of question and reply I fled the house, driven by one angel face And all the Furies.

On that long-promised visit to the North I told your wayside story to my mother And Evelyn. She remembers you.

Farewell. Pray come and see my mother. Almost

blind With ever-growing cataract, yet she thinks She sees you when she hears. Again


Vlere not enough,

, the great th

To lift us as it wet
And help us to

Our Elith throth
To change with h-

Were not his own

I was bound to her; I could not free myself in honour -- bound Not by the sounded letter of the word, But counterpressures of the yielded hand That timorously and faintly echoed mine, Quick blushes, the sweet dwelling of her

eyes Upon me when she thought I did not

Far off we went.


Save that I think

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ing world

Is our misshaping

our galus.

For on the dark

day The great Traged


In that assumption


Were these not bonds? nay, nay, but

could I wed her Loving the other? do her that great

wrong? Had I not dream'd I loved her yester

morn? Had I not known where Love, at first a

fear, Grew after marriage to full height and

form? Yet after marriage, that mock-sister

there Brother-in-law — the fiery nearness of it Unlawful and disloyal brotherhood What end but darkness could ensue from

this For all the three? So Love and Honour

jarr'd Tho' Love and Honour join'd to raise

the full High-tide of doubt that sway'd me up

and down Advancing nor retreating.

Cold words from one I had hoped to

warm so far That I could stamp my image on het

heart! Pray come and see my mother, and

farewell.' Cold, but as welcome as free airs of Extind the world

heaven After a dungeon's closeness. Selfish,

strange! What dwarfs are men! my strangled

vanity Utter'd a stifled cry — to have vext myself And all in vain for her - cold heart or

none No bride for me.

Yet so my path was clear To win the sister.

Whom I woo'd and won.
For Evelyn knew not of my former suit,
Because the simple mother work'd upon
By Edith pray'd me not to whisper of it.
And Edith would be bridesmaid on the

But on that day, not being all at ease,
I from the altar glancing back
Before the first I will was utter'd, saw
The bridesmaid pale, statuelike, passion-

No harm, no harm,' I turn'd again, and

My ring upon the finger of my bride.

So, when we parted, Edith spoke no She wept no tear, but round my Evelyn Either from that


In utter silence for so long, I thought,
What, will she never set her sister free?'
We left her, happy each in each, and

As tho' the happiness of each in each

That loved me-

brain broke
With over-acting
Beneath a pitiles
To the deal chur

Before that altar
They found her be

tant doors.
She died and she



I learnt it first


The bright quick

bad sunn'
The morning of o
And on our home

Edith in the bi
Haunted us like

Edith wrote: My mother bids me ask' (I did not tell

you — A widow with less guile than many a

child. God help the wrinkled children that are

Christ's As well as the plump cheek - she wrought

us harm, Poor soul, not knowing) .are you ill?'

(so ran The letter) you have not been here of

late. You will not find me here. At last I go

Waich lives with

Docente nature, or des Scald earn fror

heroism, The mother broke



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my bride,

For on the dark night of our marriage

day The great Tragedian, that had quench'd

herself In that assumption of the bridesmaid

she That loved me - our true Edith -- her

brain broke With over-acting, till she rose and fed Beneath a pitiless rush of Autumn rain To the deaf church - to be let in to

pray Before that altar

- so I think; and there They found her beating the hard Protes

tant doors. She died and she was buried ere we knew.

no more


I learnt it first. I had to speak. At The bright quick smile of Evelyn, that

had sunn'd The morning of our marriage, past away: And on our home-return the daily want Of Edith in the house, the garden, still Haunted us like her ghost; and by and

by, Either from that necessity for talk Which lives with blindness, or plain in

nocence Of nature, or desire that her lost child Should earn from both the praise of

heroism, The mother broke her promise to the


Put forth cold hands between us, and I

fear'a The very fountains of her life were chill'd; So took her thence, and brought her here,

and here She bore a child, whom reverently we

callid Edith; and in the second year was born A second - this I named from her own

self, Evelyn; then two weeks

she joined, In and beyond the grave, that one she

loved. Now in this quiet of declining life, Thro' dreams by night and trances of the

day, The sisters glide about me hand in hand, Both beautiful alike, nor can I tell One from the other, no, nor care to tell One from the other, only know they

come, They smile upon me, till, remembering

all The love they both have born me, and

the love I bore them both — divided as I am From either by the stillness of the grave I know not which of these I love the


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