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at this minute, in full view of the market
people. I went as usual for my luncheon-bun,
after doing my weekly purchases in country
produce; and, while eating it by the counter,
I heard the butcher's boy (Mr. Steele's, not
Mr. Edgebone's boy) call out to one of his
acquaintance, " My eye, Tom! if here isn't old
Miss Prior. What a stunning guy she looks!
don't she! " And I fear Miss Prior heard
also; for she entered a moment after, excessively
red, and immediately went into a
tirade upon the lowness, the coarseness, and
the stupidity of the common people.



EDWIN, the Saxon King Northumbrian,
Sitting one day and musing in his hall
Musing upon the marvellous soul of man

Said to a priest, "Behold! I am the thrall
Of my own ignorance. What is Life?" The priest
Look'd up, as one who hears a sudden call

Over dim fields at twilight, when the East
Deadens. "O, King! the more we ask and search,
Ever the more the wonder is increased.

The truth thereof neither in school nor church
Have I discover'd. That celestial light
Is darken'd by our earthly smoke and smirch.

Sometimes, O, King, when here you sit at night,
Feasting, and laughing in the merry shine
Of the red fire, and of the torches bright,

That quiver in the purple of your wine,—
A little bird, out of the windy cold,
Out of the darkness, awful and divine,

Comes fluttering through the door, and, waxing bold,
Flies round the walls, and on the loop'd-up shields
Flings his quaint shadow, rapid and manifold.

Whence he has comeexcept from lonely fields,
And empty night, and sighing windnone knows:
But he is here, and summer radiance yields

A brief delight, from which he quickly goes,
As Life departs from us. A little stay
He makes, and dances for great joy, and grows

Enamour'd of his home, and does embay
Himself in odorous heat, and claps his wings,
Joying to hear the eloquent minstrels play

Their hymns to Love and everlasting things.
Without, the night is dark, the night is wide,
The night is cold and loud with tempestings,—

A vast, black hollowness, where, undescried,
The shapes of earth lie buried, a huge Naught,
As it seems, but falsely, since for ever abide

Strong facts which by the Morning will be brought
Up from their graves beneath the oblivious dark,
As they first issued from their Maker's Thought.

This stranger from afar, this bird, this spark
Leaping from gloom, and shortly seen no more,
Makes here brief dwelling, as in grove or park,

Then passes forth out at the farther door,—
Out whence he came, out in the fathomless Night,
Out in the long wind, moaning to the shore.

And we shall never know whereto his flight
Conducts him; only that he once was here,
Almost as briefly as those blooms of light

That bud within the Western hemisphere,
The crimson gardens of the downward sun,
Whose Autumn in a moment breathes them sere.

So with our Life. It comes (sent forth by One),
A white and winged bird from sacred gloom
Of ante-natal mysteries, close and dun,

And issues through the gateways of the womb,
And flutters, restless, round the sweet, warm earth;
Then, through that other gate which is the tomb,

Wanes in dusk regions, seeking for new birth:
But whence it came, or where it goes, no eye
Has noted: and our knowledge starves with dearth.

Only we feel it goes not forth to die.
From dark to dark, from haunted dream to dream,
From world to world, this bird-like soul will fly,

For ever, down the ever- flowing stream,
Gaining from swarthy death white infancy,
Somewherebut where?—within the eternal scheme."


AN old street, which we shall name the
Rue des Truands, in old Paris, in times not
old to us. To call it a street is little more
than a form of speech; it is rather a narrow,
black, squalid passage that divides the
tortuous rows of high, dark, rickety, bulgy,
sickly houses, irregularly pierced with
windows that breathe an atmosphere the nature
of which may well account for the
unwholesomeness of their complexions. The place
has evidently a guilty consciousness of its
vileness, but not the least intention to
repent and reform; for it crouches there in
its filthy obscurity, shrinking from the light
of heaven and spurning the sunshine, well
knowing what his least ray would bring forth
of shame and loathesomeness and ignoble
squalor. There is no flag-way, and the
pavement's rough irregularities are nearly
concealed by the smooth, liquid, black mud
that not winter nor summer ever dries there
that has spattered the houses for so many,
many years that their fronts, for six or seven
feet high, are cased with itthat when
thunder-showers come, streams, yet more
diluted, in murky torrents into their low

It is always cold there, and the atmosphere
is always charged with a deadly damp and
nausea. On the ground-floors of the houses
are some shops that have no aspect of
containing anything saleable, or of being the
scenes where commerce of any kind is carried
on; for you always seem to see the same
faded, untempting goods, of whatever nature