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DOWN TO THE SEA.
Two sparkling streams, like things of life,
Went babbling down the hill,
Each then a sep’rate rill.
Their troth at once they plight,
And there their lives unite.
With mutual joy and sweet consent
These streams their waters mingle; Each seems more happy and content
Than when its course was single ;
More real though less free,
In trav’lling toward the sea.
What though the rugged rocks appear
An ugly leap withal ?
And bravely take the fall ;
Resume their course again,
And wander through the plain.
What though an island in the course,
Which does their pathways sever?
To be united ever.
Doth part them for a while,
Remingle with a smile.
Freed from the rashness of their youth,
A happier course they run; For is it not an ancient truth
That 'they twain shall be one'? But one, one only, to the close,
No more they'll parted be, Till their united life they lose
Together in the sea.
BY B. L. FARJEON, AUTHOR OF GRIF,' 'JOSHUA MARVEL,' AND
CHAPTER XXIX. women forget for a time the imFELIX FINDS HIS OYSTER DIFFICULT
purities by which they were sur
rounded. I am glad to be able to TO OPEN.
say that her absence was regretted The little word uttered by Lizzie there, for it is a proof that indein the concluding paragraph of the cency in word and action, and imprevious chapter is like the drop- moral suggestiveness in the nature ping of the curtain for a time upon of the songs sung in the Royal the histories of the personages, good White Rose, are not vital elements and bad, who are playing their in the success of such-like estabparts in this drama of every-day lishments. People laugh at these life. For if it in any way resembles atrocious songs, and at the atrocious what it professes to be, the drama meanings conveyed in many of here presented should represent their catch-lines; they suit the the doings of the time in which it trade of some who are regular freis written; in so far, of course, as quenters of these halls. But that they enter into the ordinary life better sentiments can be awakened of the ordinary characters who are in their hearts is proved by the introduced into it. Records of the earnest and honest enthusiasm more fashionable and (from a 'so- which is evoked by the simple ciety' point of view) higher phases singing of a simple ditty, belonging of human life and character the to a school whose days unfortunwriter leaves to other pens.
ately are not of the present. It is The autumn and winter have but a very few weeks ago that I passed, and the beautiful buds her- strolled into one of the very lowest ald the yearly miracle of spring. music-halls in the metropolis, in Certain changes have taken place which, upon the occasion of my in the circumstances and lives of visit, there were not too many honest the movers in our story, and of men and women, notwithstanding these changes it is necessary here that the hall was quite filled. Ato make record.
mong other indecently suggestive Lily has left the music-hall, and songs was one, the title of which I her simple voice and simple songs refrain from mentioning, but which are no longer heard in the Royal may be heard to-day and night White Rose, as an antidote to the uttered by boys and girls—chiefly coarseness and vulgarity which find by the latter--not only in courts prominent place on that stage. and alleys, and under dark arches, Sheis missed and regretted by many but, when the reign of the nightof the frequenters of the Royal birds commences, in the noblest White Rose. Her presence there thoroughfare in London, which, was like a fountain of pure clear with the lesser veins that feed it, I water in the midst of an unhealthy have, in the commencement of this tract of land; it made men and story, properly christened The Mart VOL. XI,
of Shame. The title of this song is very sorrowful the while, was comsupposed to have brought much pelled to accept the balance of the money and reputation to the Emi- hundred pounds which had been nent Comic who invented it; if he saved out of Lily's earnings. The were whipped for his ingenuity it old man made no remark concernwould be a fitter reward. Whoever ing Felix's evident reluctance to trades in indecency deserves some receive the money. He merely such punishment, and should re- said, “Now we are free, Felix, and ceive it. After the singing of a Lily can leave the music-hall. The number of similar songs, all of little income I have will be suffiwhich were received with expres- cient to keep us, and I shall be sions of delight and approval, two able to watch more closely over young girls came upon the stage my darling.' and sang, “What are the wild waves As the winter approached, Felix, saying?' and an old-fashioned duet, going often to the little house in called, I think, “The Cousins.' I Soho, more often found the old was amazed at the enthusiasm with man alone. Lily had found a comwhich these songs were received. panion, he said, and Alfred and The applause was honest, earnest, she made frequent visits to their genuine. There was nothing in new acquaintance. music-hall ethics to account for the 'My dear girl seems to take enthusiasm. The girls were not pleasure in her new friend,' he immodestly dressed, and did not said, and it is but natural, for they smile or wink at the audience, and are nearly the same age. It is but yet they were recalled again and natural also that brother and sister again to sing, and their songs, should cling together as Alfred and which could not raise a blush or Lily do. I have seen the young an impure thought, were undoubt lady, and there is much in her that edly the greatest success of the en- I like.' tertainment. This was to me a clear 'She has been here, then?' askproof that it is not necessary for ed Felix. success in music-halls to aim at the “Yes; on two occasions. I have utter degradation of taste and sen not been to her house, for, strange timent, as seems to be their present as it may sound, I have never been intention.
asked. Even if I were, I think I There were two reasons to ac- should not go.' count for Lily leaving the Royal “Why, sir?' White Rose. One reason was that “Because Alfred does not wish her grandfather was alarmed for it, and there is antagonism between her health ; a secret sorrow seemed my grandson and me. It has to weigh upon her spirits and to sprung up gradually, and acquires depress them. She was not as strength daily. When I first dishappy in the society of her grand- covered it, I strove to remove it ; I father as she used to be, although, strove to win Alfred's confidence, as if to counterbalance this and to but I was unsuccessful. Perhaps remove any uneasiness from him, I did not make sufficient excuse she strove to be even more affec- for youth and inexperience, and tionate to him when they were the result is that Alfred's mind is alone. The other was, that the now set against me. And he has purpose for which Old Wheels con- so strong an influence over Lilysented to her appearing upon a it is but natural, Felix, as I have stage was served. The debt of said that I am afraid to do anyshame was paid, and Felix, feeling thing with reference to her of which
he does not approve; for he would her brother. Suppose that, seeing be sure to use it as an argument this, knowing this, and believing against me in his confidences with that he had some slight influence my darling. God knows I do not over her, he refrained from saying want anything to occur to weaken what was and is in his mind, beher love for me! Poor girl! she cause of the painful conflict of must be distressed enough as it is. feeling which it would stir in your She is between two fires, as it dear granddaughter's breastwere-her brother on one side, He turned and held out his and, unhappily, her grandfather on hand, which Old Wheels took and the other. It is I who must for- warmly pressed. bear. All I can do is to wait and "What, then, remains for this hope.'
friend to do,' continued Felix, with 'Does Lily ever speak of this, animation, as they stood thus hand sir ?
in hand, face to face, 'out of reNever.; but she has it in her gard for this dear girl's tender senmind, as I have it in mine. Do sitive nature, out of regard for her you know, Felix, that I have for helplessness? To put aside, as well some time seen this conflict of as it is in his power to do, his own feeling approaching; and a little feelings; to be content to do as you while ago I did hope
do-to wait and hope. To do "You hoped what, sir?' asked more—not only to wait and hope, Felix, for Old Wheels had paused, but to watch over her for her good, as though he were approaching for- without thrusting himself before bidden ground.
her in such a way as to cause her 'That I should have had such pain. The friend of whom you an ally in a friend whom I esteem,' speak is doing this.' said Old Wheels, looking earnestly Felix !' at Felix, 'as would have rendered “Dear sir, trust your friend. In me easy in my mind respecting my so far as in him lies, he is doing, darling's future.
and will do, your part towards your "This friend, sir,' observed dear girl when she is out of your Felix, -turning his head from the sight. He knows the house where old man,-' had you reason to your dear girl's lady-friend lives; suppose that he had any influence an acquaintanceship between them over Lily, and that his counsel has been brought about in the would have had weight with her ? strangest manner; and he believes
'I believe he had influence with that the young lady—who is good, my dear girl ; I believe he has. I mind you, although inexperienced believe that she would have heed in the world's ways—has a sincere ed, and would heed now, any words respect for him. Is this some comof counsel he might speak to fort to you? her.'
'It is. Felix, my dear lad, how 'But suppose,' continued Felix, can I repay you ?' still standing so that his companion With your friendship-but I could not see his face, 'that this have that, I know. Something friend held precisely your own else is on my lips, but I must not view of the case. Suppose he fear- say it; something else is in my ed that any counsel he might be heart — you have guessed before bold enough to offer would hurt this time what it is—but I must Lily's tenderest feelings—inasmuch not give it expression. If the time as it would almost of a certainty should ever come — and I pray clash with her deep affection for that it may — when I feel that I can speak freely, it may be in your not have been ashamed to be seen power to repay me a thousand- there by any of his former friends. fold. If, unhappily, it shall never At one time his funds were very come, believe that I am repaid low, so low, indeed, that he could over and over again. Now let us not afford a dinner; so, apples talk of something else.
being in, he lived upon bread-andThey spoke of Felix's prospects apples and cold water, and made of getting along in the world. He merry over his fare. He told no had found by this time that the one, and he was not in the least world he had come into London to be pitied; he was learning life's to conquer was not so easy to open lessons, and was bearing reverses as the time-honoured oyster. He bravely, without repining and withhad smiled often to himself since out self-exaltation. He tried the his boast to Martha, and had said, usual resources of helplessness;
What arrogance!' But he was he could draw and paint indiffermistaken. It was not arrogance. ently well, and one day (just before When he said to Martha Day his bread-and-apple fare commencthat the world was before him for ed) he almost ruined himself by him to open, and, asking where his laying-in a stock of cardboard and oyster-knife was, had tapped his crayons. In a few days he had forehead and said it was there, he two sketches ready, of which he had spoken, not out of arrogance, thought so highly that he said, as but out of the over-confidence of he surveyed them, “Upon my word, youth. He had not been long in I don't think I'll part with them.' London before he discovered his But he laughed at his vanity the mistake. He became humble in next moment, and out he went to the contemplation of the greatness sell them, and came back with them of his oyster and the littleness of under his arm. No one would buy himself, and he set modestly, hum- them. He tried again the next bly to work upon the very lowest day, and the next, and the best rung of the ladder, not daring to result he could obtain was that a hope to rise very high. There came shopkeeper offered to put them in to him this feeling, of which he his window, and to divide the pronever lost sight: 'I shall be con- ceeds with him, supposing they tent,' he said to himself, “if I can were sold. Felix agreed readily become one of the common workers enough, put a low price upon them, in the world, and if I can find some and went round every day to look channel in which by the exercise at them in the window. He did of all my energy, of all the little ta- not dare to enter the shop. "The lent which I may possess, I am shopkeeper might ask me for storable to earn my living. He did age expenses,' he said with a laugh. not desire much; it was no boast Then came the bread-and-apple when he said to himself that he time; and one day, longing for a would be content with very little ; change of food, he thought he his wants were small, and he had would treat himself to a piece of within him the capacity to enjoy. meat ; so he painted a chop He took his enjoyments modestly; on cardboard, and with comical went now and again to the pit of earnestness set out his meal-a the theatre, and (out of his grate- pennyworth of apples, half a quartfulness for small blessings) got ern loaf, a jug of water, and his more than his money's worth. painted chop. As he ate his bread When he could not afford the pit he rubbed out the chop, until he he went to the gallery, and would had eaten every bit of it, and no