Графични страници
PDF файл

Does not respond at once to a love that she never suspected,

Does not attain at a bound the height to which you have been climbing.

This is not right nor just: for surely a woman’s affection

Is not a thing to be asked for, and had for only the asking. 310

When one is truly in love, one not only says it, but shows it.

Had he but waited awhile, had he only showed that he loved me,

Even this Captain of yours— who knows ?— at last might have won me,

Old and rough as he is; but now it never can happen.”

Still John Alden went on, unheeding the words of

Priscilla, 3:5 Urging the suit of his friend, explaining, persuading, expanding;

Spoke of his courage and skill, and of all his battles in Flanders,

How with the people of God he had chosen to suffer affliction,

How, in return for his zeal, they had made him Cap tain of Plymouth;

He was a gentleman born, could trace his pedigree plainly 320

Back to Hugh Standish of Duxbury Hall, in Lancashire, England,

Who was the son of Ralph, and the grandson of Thurston de Standish;

Heir unto vast estates, of which he was basely defrauded,

Still bore the family arms, and had for his crest a cock argent

Combed and wattled gules, and all the rest of the blaZOD. 325

He was a man of honor, of noble and generous nature;

Though he was rough, he was kindly; she knew how during the winter

He had attended the sick, with a hand as gentle as woman’s;

Somewhat hasty and hot, he could not deny it, and headstrong,

824 Family arms: if a man belonged to a family of the nobility, or was knighted for bravery in war, he and his sons were permitted to wear upon their shields a design of some sort to distinguish them in battle. This design usually contained the head or the whole body of some animal. That of Standish was evidently a cock argent, that is, silver-colored or white, with comb and wattles gule, that is, red.

825 Blazon: the word means the description of a coat of arms.

Stem as a soldier might be, but hearty, and placable always, 330

Not to be laughed at and scorned, because he was little of stature;

For he was great of heart, magnanimous, courtly, courageous;

Any woman in Plymouth, nay, any woman in England,

Might be happy and proud to be called the wife of Miles Standish!

But as he warmed and glowed, in his simple and

eloquent language, 335 Quite forgetful of self, and full of the praise of his rival,

Archly the maiden smiled, and, with eyes overrunning with laughter,

Said, in a tremulous voice, “Why don’t you speak for yourself, John ? ”


Into the open air John Alden, perplexed and. bewildered, Rushed like a man insane, and wandered alone by the sea-side; 340 D

Paced up and down the sands, and bared his head to the eastwind,

Cooling his heated brow, and the fire and fever within him.

Slowly, as out of the heavens, with apocalyptical splendors,

Sank the City of God, in the vision of John the Apostle,

So, with its cloudy walls of chrysolite, jasper, and sapphire, 345

Sank the broad red sun, and over its turrets uplifted

Glimmered the golden reed of the angel who measured the city.

“Welcome, 0 wind of the East!” he exclaimed in his wild exultation, “Welcome, 0 wind of the East, from the caves of the misty Atlantic! ‘ Blowing o’er fields of dulse, and measureless meadows

of sea-grass, 35° Blowing o’er rocky wastes, and the grottos and gardens of ocean!

Lay thy cold, moist hand on my burning forehead, and wrap me

344 Look up Revelation xxi. 10—21.

849 Caves: in mythology the winds are supposed to be kept in caves.

Close in thy garments of mist, to allay the fever

within me! ” Like an awakened conscience, the sea was moaning

and tossing,

Beating remorseful and loud the mutable sands of the sea-shore. 355

Fierce in his soul was the struggle and tumult of passions contending;

Love triumphant and crowned, and friendship wounded and bleeding,

Passionate cries of desire, and importunate pleadings of duty!

“Is it my fault,” he said, “that the maiden has chosen between us ?

Is it my fault that he failed, —— my fault that I am the victor ? ” 360

Then within him there thundered a voice, like the voice of the Prophet:

“It hath displeased the Lord ! ” — and he thought of David’s transgression,

3" David, king of Israel, fell in love with Bathsheba, the beautiful wife of his friend Uriah. And he sent Uriah away to the war that he might be killed. Afterward the king married Bathsheba. But Nathan, the prophet, announced to David, “ It hath displeased the Lord! ”

What resemblance is there between this situation and that of John Alden?

« ПредишнаНапред »