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But all the wine is spilled, my love,
the spilling, it was sad !
The days are dead when as a lad
I raised the goblet high, my love,
Between mine eyes and the strong sun ;
With great desire to take but one
There came one from the South, my love,
Ah me, but she was very fair !
And deep soft eyes and golden hair,-
I seem to see her stand, my love,
As in the days that now are dead;
The other held a rose full red ;-
Those lips spoke pleasant things, my love ;
undid me utterly ;
Her clinging hair imprisoned me,
I tell to you this tale, my love ;
Ev’n now your sweet eyes fill with tears;
As I could once, in the young years
But listen longer still, my love :
She gave the goblet unto me,
Saying, “ Life's goblet foams for thee;"
I raised it to my mouth, my love,
I tasted once that sweet strange draught; And then she from the South, my love,
Raised her lithe arm, and then a waft
And there upon the ground, my love,
The goblet lay that had been mine !
Drank deeply of that perfect wine
And then she rose and stood, my love,
And looked and laughed full in my face ; (Were those stains wine or blood, my love ?
I cannot tell.) A moment's space
And then she turned and went, my love,
A low, strange, thrilling song sang she ; And as she went she sent, my love,
The rose-leaves floating heavily
And I lay there as dead, my love,
What had been me indeed had died ;
Its petals scattered far and wide,
And so I say again, my love,
The life that has been now is o'er;
Of waiting on a low, lone shore,
But leave me still alone, my love;
Why didst thou give thine heart to me? Keep it : it is thine own, my love,
And turn thee quickly; turn and flee,
Yet could I give to thee, my love,
The heart that in those days was mine; Could I life's goblet see, my love,
Remade, refilled with sparkling wine, Perchance thou might'st be mine—I thine. IX.
NEVER saw Pelican more thoroughly alive than
during the few months of the autumn and winter which followed the Avondale period of his experience. In spite of his comical aversion to water, it had apparently acted upon him as the very wine of life. Not only was he stronger in body, but all his intellectual sensibilities and his spiritual sympathies seemed to 'have been quickened. A change—if the result of inevitable growth can be called a change—had for some time been creeping over him, and now its character became clearly defined. The pugnacity which had been so characteristic of him, and which had been fostered by a solitude seldom broken but by uncongenial invasions, had declined under the very influences which might have been expected to strengthen and confirm it. He was silenter than of old, and yet more impressive; his individuality seemed in a few months to have outgrown the ancient necessity for self-assertion. The Avondale campaigns had made him feel the bliss of rest, not from labour but from conflict. More clearly than ever, there arose in his mind the conception of truth as a vision to be beheld, rather than as a fortress to be taken by storm. A new humility seemed to possess him, and
where there had been strength there was now grace as well; or rather, should I not say, grace appeared as a sign that strength was being perfected ? He had always been a good listener, but he had, in the past, listened with his hand upon his sword. He was, even in the old days, a boon companion at every intellectual banquet, but he came as a warrior not less than a feaster; and it might always be said that,
“ He carved at the meal
With gloves of steel
Now all was changed. He talked with greater freshness and vivacity than ever ; but the growth that had taken place was evidenced more clearly by his silence than by his speech. He had always been eager to learn, he was now eager to be taught; and there are those who know from their own experience that this is not a distinction without a difference. When he listened and no teaching came, he turned away quietly to seek for it elsewhere, and found what he wanted at last.
One of these turnings away resulted in the formation of an association which caused an amount of scandal in the neighbourhood quite disproportionate to its very quiet and unassuming character. It was composed of half a dozen men, nearly all young, who, being from different causes dissatisfied with the spiritual nutriment obtained from the authorized religious instructors at Brookfield,