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!:•-•- that down the alleys shine afar, And open, jasmine-muffled lattices,' And groups under the dreaming garden-trees,
And the full moon, and the white evening-etar.
He hearkens not! light comer, he is gone 1 What matters it? next year he will return,
And we shall have him in the sweet spring-days, With whitening hedges, and uncrumphng fern,
And blue-bells trembling by the forest-ways,
And scent of hay new-mown.
See him come back, and cut a smoother reed,
And blow a strain the world at last shall heed, — For Time, not Corydon, hath conquered thee.
Alack, for Corydon no rival now!
But when Sicilian shepherds lost a mate,
Some good survivor with his (lute would go, Piping a ditty sad for Bion's fate,
And cross the unpcnnittcd ferry's flow,
And unbend Pluto's brow,
Of Proserpine, among whose crowned hair
Are flowers, first opened on Sicilian air; And flute his friend, like Orpheus, from the dead.
0 easy access to the hearer's grace,
When Dorian shepherds sang to Proserpine!
For she herself had trod Sicilian fields, She knew the Dorian water's gush divine,
She knew each lily white which Enna yields,
Each rose with blushing face;
But ah, of our poor Thames she never heard I
Her foot the Cumner cowslips never stirred; And we should tease her with our plaint in vain.
Well! wind-dispersed and vain the words will be, Yet, Thyrsis, let me give my grief its hour
In the old haunt, and find our tree-topped hill I Who, if not I, for questing here hath power?
I know the wood which hides the daffodil,
I know what white, what purple fritill.irics
The grassy harvest of the river-fields, Above by Ensham, down by Sandford, yields; And what sedged brooks are Thames's tributaries;
I know these slopes; who knows them if not I ? — But many a dingle on the loved hillside,
With, thorns once studded, old, white-blossomed
Where thick the cowslips grew, and, far descried, 'High towered the spikes of purple orchises,
llath since our day put by The coronals of that forgotten time;
Down each green bank hath gone the ploughboy's
And only in the hidden brooksidc gleam
Where is the girl, who, by the boatman's door,
Unmoored our skiff, when, through the Wytham
flats, Red loosestrife and blond meadow-eweet among,
And darting swallows, and light water-gnats,
We tracked the shy Thames shore? Where are the mowers, who, as the tiny swell
Of our boat passing heaved the river-grass,
Stood with suspended scythe to see us pass? They all are gone, and thou art gone as well
Yes, thou art gone, and round me too the Night
I see her veil draw soft across the day,
The cheek grown thin, the brown hair sprent with
I feel her finger light
Laid pausefully upon life's headlong train;
And long the way appears, which seemed so short
And high the mountain-tops, in cloudy air, The mountain-tops where is the throne of Truth,
Tops in life's morning-sun so bright and bare.
Unbreachable the fort
And strange and vain the earthly turmoil grows,
And near and real the charm of thy repose,
But hush! the upland hath a sudden loss
A troop of Oxford hunters going home,
From hunting with the Berkshire hounds they
Quick I let me fly, and cross
Backed by the sunset, which doth glorify
The orange and Dale violet evening-sky,
I take the omen 1 Eve lets down her veil,
The west unflushes, the high stars grow bright, And in the scattered farms the lights come out.
I cannot reach the Signal-Tree to-night,
Yet, happy omen, hail I
(For there thine earth-forgetting eyelids keep
The morningless and unawakenmg sleep
Hear it, O Thyrsis, still our Tree is there I —
These brambles pale with mist engarlanded,
To a boon southern country he is fled,
And now in happier air,
(And purer or more subtle soul than thee,
I trow, the mighty Mother doth not see!)
Thou nearest the immortal strains of old.
In the hot corn-field of the Phrygian king,
Sings his Sicilian fold,
His sheep, his hapless love, his blinded eyes;
There thou art gone, and me thou leavest here,
Despair I will not, while I yet descry
That lonely Tree against the western sky. Still, still these slopes, 't is clear, Our Gypsy-Scholar haunts, outliving thee! Fields where the sheep from cages pull the
A fugitive and gracious light he seeks,
This does not come with houses or with gold,
"I" is not in the world's market bought and sold. But the smooth-slipping weeks Drop by, and leave its seeker still untired.
Out of the heed of mortals is he gone,
He wends unfollowed, he must house alone;
Thou too, O Thyrsis, on this quest wert bound,
Men gave thee nothing; but this happy quest,
If men procured thee trouble, gave thee rest.
Its fiMopped Hurst, its farms, its quiet fields,
And still the haunt beloved a virtue yields
What though the music of thy rustic flute
Lost it too soon, and learnt a stormy note Of men contention-tost, of men who groan, ■ Which tasked thy pipe too sore, and tired thy throat — It failed, and thou wert mute. Yet hadst thou alway visions of our light,
And long with men of care thou couldst not stay, And soon thy foot resumed its wandering way, Left human haunt, and on alone till night.
Too rare, too rare, grow now my visits here 1
Thyrsis, in reach of sheep-bells is my home.
MY EXPERIENCE IN A GREEK QUARANTINE.
Having occasion during the past summer to go from one of the Turkish islands of the Mediterranean over to European terra-nrmn, I was obliged to go to Syria, the entrepdt of the Levant, to take passage in the Austrian Lloyd's steamer; but as the cholera panic and the restrictions laid on the steamers from all Turkish ports had virtually stopped regular communication with Greek ports, I was obliged to borrow the yacht of an English friend who happened to be visiting us at the time. Our island had had no case of cholera, and indeed had never been visited by it; its general healthfulness was all that could be desired by the most exacting board of health, and as, moreover, we were fortified with English, Turkish, and Greek bills of health, I anticipated at the worst a detention of four or five days previous to being permitted to land.
We had a charming run of thirty odd hours, with just wind enough to make a landsman love the sea, and sighting Syra in the morning, stood directly in for the port. Half a mile off the mole-head we met a man-of-war's boat, the Greek blue and white stripes flying out from the stern, and received a most peremptory warning to go no nearer, fearfully shouted from a safe distance; and on learning that we were from a Turkish port, the officer ordered us off to Delos for eleven days' quarantine, declining even to look at our bill of health, or hear any protest or explanations.
Those who have been at Syra may remember to the west of that port, and about ten miles away, a low, bare, and rocky island, which few people ever visit, and pa which only two or three herdsmen live. On closer inspection one finds that what seemed to be one in really two islands, the larger called sometimes Rhenee, and sometimes the greater Dclos, the smaller the true Delos, site of the famous temple of Apollo. In a bay on the southeastern side of the former, the Sylph (I am sufficiently inexact in details, as I have occasionally to pass through Syra and don't care to have my identity discovered) cast anchor, and the so-called lazaretto being only an iot ipuificant collection of huts, built of rough boards, I elected to perform quarantine on board, even at the cost of detaining the Sylph longer than her owner had calculated. In fact the bare, dry, even burnt look of the island, without a shrub, a spring, or a living thing on it except a few guardiani aud tome luckless passenger* of an English steamer which had preceded us by a few days, gave small
hope of being able to pass eleven days of idleness endurably, in the heat of midsummer, where the sun is as fervent as on the south side of a Greek island. The steamer was from Alexandria, with over two hundred passengers on board, mostly Syriotes and other Greeks, flying from the cholera, then in the beginning of its fury at that city; therefore they were most naturally put into quarantine. Their term was fourteen days, I believe, of which nearly a week had passed without any symptoms of sickness of any kind. We were near enough to hail across to her on still days and hear the complaints of the captain roared at sympathetic cars in good broad English, and witness by eye and ear the facts I am about to narrate, which I challenge the most patriotic and mendacious inhabitant of Syra to contradict.
The captain of the steamer having, like myself, only calculated on a few days' observation, had provided himself with sufficient stores for the time for his few cabin passengers, the great bulk of those on board being deck passengers, who provide themselves with food for the voyage. These had been exhausted soon after their arrival at quarantine; and the captain, praying in vain for supplies from the authorities of Syria, began to furnish his ship's supplies; for it was impossible, as he said, to see the poor people starve. But these supplies, abundant for his proper ends, would go but a little way in feeding that hungry multitude, and were threatened with exhaustion before the towns-people should awaken their Christianity from its sleep of, I imagine, about seventeen centuries. The captain appealed in vain to them to save their countrymen from starvation. They were not bound, they said, to provide food for people because they found them in quarantine. So the captain gave out all his stores, little by little, and shouted across to me to know if I had any to spare. The Sylph carried a crew of twelve men, and we naturally had two or three barrels of hard bread and salt beef stowed away for emergencies; and though what we could give them, with proper regard to our own needs, could be little more than a few hours' respite from starvation, it was impossible to withhold it.
The captain was an incarnate protest, a deckwalking imprecation on the miserly authorities of Syra. The people in his ship were not his own countrymen, but Greeks; he was under no obligation to provide a mouthful for one of them; they had no money to buy, and he had no authority to buy for them except from his own funds, — to have done which he must have been a Roman prince or an English banker. So he wrote, and begged, and protested. He wrote to the English consul, Mr. Lloyd, and Mr. Lloyd stormed at the nomarch and demarch by turns in vain. The Syriotes would not send, and the consul could not, — save a little for the captain and crew; and provisions were not only not supplied by the board of health, but permission to carry them off was denied those who would have taken them, — so great was the panic at the idea of communication with the ship. Mr. Lloyd succeeded now and then in sending a small supply by the r/uarda-cosla, and they bought now and then a kid of the herdsmen on the "clean" part of the island, at exorbitant rates. But they, too, finally refused to communicate; and then the captain wrote to the consul, — I saw the letter afterwards, — " For three days my men have had no bread, and two of them have gone raving mad." Amongst the cabin passengers was a Frenchwoman, pregnant and near her confinement; for her the captain begged for a doctor or nurse in vain, — none would venture; and when the time was come the poor mother had only the kindly care of the captain and her fellow-passengers, among whom was no woman or person competent to care for her. Fortunately, she passed through her trial safely.
In the mean while Mr. Lloyd kept up his protests and remonstrances to people and government; protested against the inhumanity and the illegality of the whole thing; begged for relief to deaf ears. "Better," they said, " that a few should suffer, than that forty thousand should incur the peril of cholera. To allow people to carry provisions to the island was to run danger of communication with contagion." The only reply of any significance that Mr. Lloyd got was a threat of burning his house over his head if he persisted in attempting to bring cholera into Syra.
We, knowing nothing of this little turmoil, lay quietly under the intense sun waiting the lapse of time. The Greeks on the steamer might starve, but we were perhaps thankful that they were only Greeks; we should wear through well enough, and then be free. Mr. Lloyd finally wrote to Athens; the government at Athens ordered an examination; and then the demos, under compulsion, voted meagre supplies to their famished countrymen.
But our fates were merciless. A few days, very few, before the steamer's time had expired, a ship arrived from Alexandria which actually had the cholera on board! Twenty or more had died and were thrown overboard on the voyage, as we afterwards learned, and several more were sick. As she came into the quarantine anchoring-ground and cast anchor, she dragged some distance, and seemed in a fair way to drift against the armed cutter which was doing duty as gnarda-coata and capo-guardiano. The orave fellow — I hope he was n't a sailor — ran out his guns, and prepared to sink the ship and all on boara, lest she should come into contact with him. That scene is one I shall never forget and hardly ever forgive: the huddled passengers driven on deck by the pestilence and heat, and doubtless already in a frenzy of'fear from the perils within, found themselves met on the threshold of deliverance from their awful fellow-voyager by the open mouths of Greek cammades. Women shrieked and men howled with fright; all prayed, supplicating the gods and the captain; the guarda-costa people were in a worse panic, if possible, — shouted orders and counter-orders, ran out a gun and ran it in again, threatened,prayed, and cursed, as though doom was on them. This horror of the cholera seemed to
have become a madness in the Greek mind. Our sailors gave the wretches the benefit of much good and strong English, which I fear was sadly wwted, and would have been equally so had it been equally good Greek; but I noticed that our guardiano was stricken with fear at the bare idea of the vicinity ui the infected ship. What the extent of the contagion was we knew not of course; but the hurrying and trepidation of the people on board, and in ii,<> boat which came alongside, made it evident that something unusual was going on. The boat lay far off, and the officers shouted very loudly; ana »e heard afterwards from the quarantine-boat that there were tour or five dead of cholera on board, whom they wanted to send on shore to be buried, but this was refused as dangerous! then to be permittcd to sink them in the sea, this was still less to be allowed. They begged for a doctor, — no on? would go; guardiani even would not go on baud for any compensation, and they rowed away, leaving her to her fate. We shortly after received an intimation that by reason of this new arrival, all ships in quarantine at that time must stay fourteen davs more!
My own wrath at Greek inhumanity had bwn already so largely excited that I could get no angrier at this new tyranny; in fact, I thought more of the steamer and its already half-starved, and even in some cases dying, people than of myself; and if I had had the pestilence in the bolluw of my hand, I should, I fear, have visited Syra a.< Egypt never was visited. But the most appallinj thought was of that luckless ship with Death hoMing revel on her, and the living bound to tbe dead.
Here was the ship of the ancient mariner, in sooth, — anchored only, but with anchors almost useless on that tranquil sea, the fiery sun above, anil the glassy water below, and nothing to break tbat awful monotony but the merciless quarantine-brat coming to ask and refuse. We could see the people on the ship gather on the forecastle and in the ngging, looking out to the land, which, brown and dry as it was, was to them a refuge. The second and the third day came, and the dead multiplied, until ten or a dozen corpses were on board. Still no physician, no landing, no burial even; and the plague-stricken ship and ita dying cargo lay sti under the August sun. The third day the cre» received permission to put the bodies overboard, tied with ropes, that they might not drift away and carry to some accursed Greek community the plagut it merited. I may be unjust, but those days havt made me detest and abhor the very name of Sits and its people. We saw the dead lowered otcrboard one by one, and with glasses could see them floating alongside, horrible to sight and fancy.
I am only dealing with facts, — facts which will be confirmed by the testimony of many who p»<;d those broiling August days in that quarantine- So physician could be found in Syra who had humanity enough to hear the cry of that suffering company, or venture on the plague-stricken ship. They <M finally get permission to bury the dead, all hut on* mother and child, who drifted loose, and was cart on some unknown shore, or fed the fishes; and finally a Danish physician came, a volunteer from — I regret to say I know not where, nor even do I know his name. I did not think then to enaw myself to render him the honor he deserve!; and finally the sick were landed. There had been » hundred and forty passengers on board when the
ship left Alexandria, and there were over a hundred when she came to quarantine, — the untouched remaining on board until they were attacked in their tarn, and were carried ashore to die. Their provisions, too, were failing, and at last starvation came to help the pestilence.
1 sought distraction and pastime amongst the sailors, of whom two had attracted my attention during the run over. One of them I judged to be an American at first sight, the incarnation of " goahead " and nervous energy. I had seen him at the wheel the first day out, as I sat aft taking my fruit after dinner, and tempted him to afl'ability by a huge slice of melon, which he ate without ever taking his eye for more than an instant from the course of the yacht. The next day they were apples that broke the silence; when, abruptly turning round to me, he asked if I was a freemason. He was, and evidently did not understand how one could treat a sailor with courtesy or kindness without some such motive as that mystic brotherhood is supposed to furnish. He wore a black wide-awake crowded close down to his eyes, which looked sharp out from under black, clear-drawn eyebrows. His nose was prominent, pointed, and straight, and his mouth full of decision; lips close-pressed, and chin small and slightly retreating. He carried his head habitually a little forward, as if on the look-out, and reminded me in his ensemble more of a clipper than anything I ever saw in flesh. He was taciturn, however, and absolutely refused to talk of himself. The other, who responded to the name of Bill, was certainly one of the best examples of the English sailor I have ever met, — robust, thick-set, with large brain and full beard, a frank blue eyes, and an off-hand manner familiar to all who permitted it, but respectful to the highest degree, and speaking the English of a man who had had some education. In the first dare of our imprisonment he had surprised me not a little by offering to lend me some old numbers of reviews and magazines, written on the margins of which I found some shrewd comments, and with some bits of drawing. I am not going to write his story, and shall not repeat what I learned of a life ruined by an uncontrollable spirit of adventure and unimproved opportunities; I have only to do with him now as he wove himself into the web of our quarantine life.
It was from Bill that I learned what I first knew of Aleck ; that he was, as I had supposed, an American, had been in the Confederate service, and had even served on the Alabama. After finding out so much, I tried hard to make him talk about himself, but in vain. He was respectful, but not communicative on any subject, and least so on himself. But the new excitement of the cholera-ship and its horrors made a certain difference. I certainly felt more like getting near my fellow-men, and they, and especially Aleck, were more oblivious of the difference between them and me. The immediate cause of the breaking of the ice was the sight of a poor woman standing on the poop of the cholera-ship as she drifted towards us from her anchorage, before a slight easterly air, that brought the woman's voice down to us in supplications which we could from time to time partially distinguish, and which were for bread, bread, bread! We could see others on board climbing on the bulwarks, standing on the poop or forecastle, according to the end of the ship which drifted nearest us; but we could hear no other voice, though we doubted not that many were joined with here. Beside her we saw, later, another female
figure, whom, by the aid of the glass, I believed I could make out to be her daughter. The latter made no sound that we could hear, but sat mutely or stood with her arm around the other, while ever and anon we heard that heart-rending cry, "Psome / psome'/ (bread! bread !)" At sunset that day we were altogether on the forecastle, better friends through our common pity. We proposed to our taciturn guardiano to send some bread on board the ship, but he absolutely refused to lend himself to any such risk of contagion, and forbade any attempt to communicate either with the ship or the shore where the sick were; and to tell the truth, it was not pleasant to contemplate the chances of being put in quarantine for an additional indefinite term, for having, even in a kindly work, come in real or fancied contact with the disease. But as the authority of the guardiano was absolute, we could do nothing in the matter openly, though it was determined in council by us three to do something in some way, if relief was not brought soon.
From the forecastle next morning we saw in the early light, the two hapless creatures in the same position. Bill, looking over into the water thoughtfully, asked if there were many sharks in those waters. I replied that I had never seen but one, inquiring why he asked. "Why," said he, "I think I could get some grub over to those women, if you could manage the guardiano." "It is n't much of a swim," I replied, " but as to carrying the prog, you will find that more difficult." "Well," said he,"" I have carried a pretty good load in the water before now, and can float enough to keep those women from starving. I lived in the Sandwich Islands once, and though I don't stand out of the water like a Kanaka, I have carried my clothes on my head many a mile without wetting them, and a few pounds of bread won't sink me." Here his eye twinkled as if he had a story to tell, and I waited for it. "I commanded a Iorcha transport during the last war in China," he began, after a moment, " and one day, while we were in Canton, I was walking through one of the streets with my mate, an Englishman, and we stopped to look in a joss-house. There was a joss there of pure silver, about fourteen inches high, and I made up my mind to have him. We two were the only Europeans on board, and the first dark, stormy night we took the boat and went ashore well armed. The ioss-house had no guard but the priests, and the night was so bad that we broke the door down and got in without the outsiders knowing it, and carried the joss off easily enough; but the next day we had row enough to pay for it. Every vessel in the river was searched, and if I had had him on board, he would have been found, and we should have caught it, for the officers were in earnest about it, and the Chinese in a fury. I knew there would be the d—l to pay in the morning, so I put a cord around his neck, and went down and hung him to the lower pintle of the rudder, and left him there till the hue and cry was over, and then brought it up. It weighed forty-two pounds. I think I could do more in this case than then." "Do it then," said I; "I 'll help you all I can: but we won't let the captain or any of the men know of it!" "O, I'll put that all right," said Aleck; "Jones has the first watch to-night, and I 'll change with him, and as for the guardiano, he 's a sleepy cuss, and I reckon won't give himself the trouble to look on deck after he turns in, — he never has, any way; and if you 'd like to keep watch with me, sir, I think we can manage it." "But, Bill," I added,