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No. LXXV.]

MARCH, 1857.

[PRICE 8d.

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to be set on the tabula Books, not always reda We feel the ke's e in it

. But for eigel Zer most sweet and grant

PENITENCE. ble; but it is very party

I HATE lived in London all my life, and yet I suppose

that few hare so strong a passion for the country as I land thoughtful than it have. To breathe its fresh air, and to feast my heart and

mind on its endless variety of beauty, is a necessity of my

nature. To gratify it, it has been my babit for years to such a If Mrs. Grahan kafa tu out of London every Saturday evening, spend Sunday ould have thought het hulle sweet quiet spot, and return to the turmoil of our

modern Tyre early on Monday morning. It is my one L-intentioned, but very bandulgence and extravagance. I cut myself off from every

other pleasure for the sake of achieving this. I live in cheaper lodgings, I straiten myself in food and in firing, volume of home travels which would, I think, prove at I least as interesting as nine-tenths

the continental tours scarcely less pretty flat are published. Many a strange story I have picked

up in the course of these journeys, i

, mind to write, ever since I heard it, which is One Saturday I set off to take a longer journey than nsual, for it happened that a royal birthday fell on the the rest of the world. It does not suit me to say the direction in which I travelled; it is enough that I disembarked opwards of a hundred miles from London,

15

the readers thoughts

one of which I have

my

non several years ago.

suceeding Monday

, and was a holiday to me as well as to

TOL. 13.

PART 75.

sles, Printers, Derby

and that I found myself, on quitting the railway station

, in a large bustling town. I hate such places, and sol quietly turned my face towards the setting sun, and walked out of it. My luggage was in my pocket, and my walking-stick in my hand, and I was free of the world for at least eight-and-forty hours. Questions I never ask, so they would destroy the romance of uncertainty, in which I delight, but sometimes I take the sun, and sometime the moon, for my guide, and always I choose lanes ag footpaths in preference to the high-roads, for I know wel the sweetest spots of earth do not lie beside the publi ways.

It was May, and the thorns were white with blossomi and as I passed out of the town, with the amber light ful in my face, the air was all redolent with the breath the wall-flowers growing in the tiny gardens. And ove many a wall the laburnum hung its golden chains, and ta lilac showed its clustered blossoms; and the luscious scen of the horse-chestnut flowers came stealing out into the high-road froin many a dainty pleasure-ground. Walking on until I reached the top of a hill, I paused, and looke round on either side, feeling that the moment of fate wa come, and I must choose my path. I did not hesitate long On the east there was nothing visible but the suburbs of the town, and flowery meadows, rich in grass

, each with i tidy fence, and here and there a little hedge-row timber But on the west, the sun stood red above a purple wood and I caught glimpses of a river through the high tree and intersecting hedges, which seemed to break up the foreground of the picture. There lies my path,' I said; ‘into that beautiful unknown future I must journer. And walking on, I speedily came to a green lane leading in the right direction, and turned into it. Presently the branching trees met over my head, and the level rays o light came streaming through their trunks, burnishing stem and bough and leaf as they passed, and playing

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with the shadows which danced in the evening breeze
Actes my road. On I went, my very heart rejoicing in
the beauty around me, but suddenly a turn in the lane
brought me out into a stretch of open country, and, ere I
bad walked another mile, right into the wood which had
stood so purple beneath the fiery sun. The road seemed
to run through the very centre, and was too well trodden

to satisfy my love of the unfrequented, so I took a narrow, sips / che prickly bye-path, and plunged deep amongst the hazels. The spring flowers were a little past

, the sweet
violets had disappeared, though there were still a pro-
fusion of the pale blue scentless ones. The stalks of
the cowslips and primroses had grown long and weak, but
the byacinth and the anemone, the woodsorrel and the
woodruffe, mere in their zenith. Often I was tempted
into some little fastness of briar and thorn by a vision of
some finer blossom or more uncommon plant. I had
just attered a cry of joy over a beautiful specimen of the
Fare frittilaria, dusky and mottled like any serpent,
when bark ! roused by my voice and step, two nightin-
gadis began their wondrous song; and one was so close
beside me, that when I raised myself up, I saw it sitting
on a hazel branch, and could watch every pulsation of its
throat

. By-and-by the wood was all alive with them, and
my spirit seemed almost to reel, intoxicated with the
delight of their heaven-inspired melodies.

Øye frequenters of concerts ! ye rich and respectable ! who paid guineas to stand crushed in a hot promiscuous bear Jenny Lind, whose highest praise it was that she *2 like one of these birds ; think of me as I stood alone

Te white ith the air ent with the ng gardens golden ches. ; and the last

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grana into it. Bu 1. and the eir trunks de este \ passed,

in that thicket, every sense enchanted, a thousand deliteaua seents steaming up from the earth, the soft night der dripping from my fingers, a pleasant breeze rippling actia my brow, breathing the pure, delicious atmosphere, that it was absolute luxury to inhale, and listening to

such strains as the very angels themselves perchance.com rejoice to hear. Here, excepting that which lurked in my own heart, sin was not. Here was no envy, no heart burning, no vanity, no impurity. Here, surely, was foretaste of that eternal happiness which shall fill to over flowing the souls of the righteous, enhanced how man thousandfold by the presence of God, and the glory o heaven. Long I stood, a rapt and reverent listener, wor shipping the Almighty as I leant upon my staff, until the gathering shades warned me to depart

. With a sight moved on, and presently my little tortuous path brougt me again into the green lane which I had deserted Walking steadily forward, I came out of the wood upa the river, and creeping down a pretty shrubby bank, pursued my way along the towing-path.

By this time the moon was up, and the red light in whiel I had commenced my walk was changing to a silver grep Sometimes I sat down for a minute or two, or thren myself on my face along the side of the river and scoopet up the water in my hand and moistened my lips, or torei with it by letting it steal through my fingers, and dabble in the limpid wave. Along the bank the glow-wornis came out, and I began to think it was high time to seek a resting-place for the night. Another half-hour's walking brought me within sight of a large straggling village, the broken row of houses being diversified with high trees amongst which arose the unusually beautiful spire of the village church.

In a few minutes I had found a decent public-house, and ordered my supper and hired a bel The next morning was as lovely as the preceding evening had been, but my long walk made me sleep late, and it was after nine ere I had concluded

my I sallied forth, intending to walk until the church bell turning to the left, as I quitted the inn, I found myself in a very few minutes crossing a pretty green, of which the

breakfast. Then

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E-path and the red list hanging to si inute or toi of the river L istened my lips

rectory-house, the schools, and the churchyard, formed
S that which has the boundary. An ordinary village church would not

have arrested my attention, but the building that rose
before me was a rare and beautiful specimen, the four
armas of the cross being of equal length, crowned with a

spire remarkably taper and lofty, its white finger rising
God, and it up high above the stately trees, whose dark branches

seemed almost overhanging the rest of the church. Being
a bit of an architect, I could not but give up my ramble
for the sake of examining the sacred edifice more minute-
ly; and after spending the best part of an hour in poking
about and making notes of sundry little peculiarities I
noticed about the mouldings and traceries, I turned my
attention to the churchyard itself, intending to while
away the rest of the time in meditations amongst the
tombs

. I was not in the habit of doing anything of
the sort, generally rambling over the country until the
last moment possible

. It was evident that the village was
a large one ; I could tell it by the graves lying so closely
together

, and the whole inclosure being so full of them,
for even the northern side was crowded with inmates.
There were the usual varieties in the shapes and sizes of
the tombs. There were pyramids and squares, and
oblongs and crosses, and groups of upright stones over-
happing each other, some so tall as almost to touch the
fares of the roof, and others so low as to be nearly sunk
out of sight. I began to read the inscriptions, and I

grave to grave, and from group to
group

, until I had pretty well made the tour of the church-
pari

. Suddenly I paused, and asked myself what I had
been reading. One long catalogue of every Christian vir-
tue which could grace the soul of man. Verily,' I said
to myself, “ here sleep the righteous, but where are the
wicked? Here rest the village saints, but what have they
done with their sinners? I looked around, and beheld at
by feet a low brick tomb, raised scarcely a foot from the

my fingers :

bank the was high to ther half-lear ge stragaling ersified with a Jy beautiful s I had foere's

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