Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB
[ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors]

I pity the man who can travel from Dan to Beersheba, and cry—“It is all barren;” and so it is, and so is all the world to him who will not cultivate the fruits it offers. I declare, said I, clapping my hands cheerfully together, that was I in a desert, I would find out where with in it to call forth my affections. STERN E.

The Journey.

THERE are very few of the places in which it has been my fate to sojourn, that have not afterwards left some pleasurable recollection on my mind, and caused me at the time some pain to quit them. If a man's heart is well attuned to his fellowbeings, it is sure, wherever it goes, to form

VOL. II. B SOIme

Some of those social ties—some of those kindly affections, that, in the aggregate, constitute the grand link which binds us to existence, and the breaking of which is the great pang of death. It is sure, whereever it goes, to assimilate itself with something it can love when present, and must regret when it is gone. Even the place where we have enjoyed many pleasures, has a claim upon our attachment—to be left with sorrow, and to be revisited with delight.

Far different from the eager anticipations of joy with which he used to contemplate any change of scene, were the ideas and feelings of Charles Melville, on leaving a city where thoughts and sensations totally different from any he had ever felt before, had caused a new epoch in his life—a life hitherto devoid of interest, which, to one so thirsty after incident, was but barely

existence. Though Charles had quitted the baroness with regret—though it was a painful - struggle

struggle to do so, he knew that he was doing right, and he took full advantage of this reflection, to reason himself into as comfortable a state of mind as he could. He had great buoyancy of spirits, which soon rose over any common depression; and after sleeping undisturbedly the whole night, he rose early, to prepare for his journey, thinking that perhaps his heart might not be so deeply entangled as he had imagined. Adelaide, he could not deny, was beautiful, accomplished, and charming; but he began to fancy that he had been more fascinated than in love. At first he accused himself of inconstancy for these very thoughts; but remembering, that in the course he was pursuing, it was better to think so, he soon reasoned himself into fully believing them. However, as the carriage rolled slowly through the streets in a dull February morning, chilled with the sunless aspect of the sky, suffocated with the smell of roasting cof. fee, and annoyed with 'all those early

B 2 noises,

noises, which in other days so disturbed the elegant Boileau, but more especially as they passed through the barrier, and Paris was too certainly left behind him, a great many bitter feelings pressed upon Charles's mind, and the prospect before him looked dark and cheerless, though fortune, youth and health, seemed to promise him every thing in the beautiful countries he was going to visit: but as the mists and shadows of the unconfirmed day gradually fled before the beams of the sun, in pursuing their journey, his sorrows also

seemed to dissipate. Mr. Wilmot too appeared to have shaken off, in a great degree, that sort of gloom, which in general hung upon him. He was cheerful, if he was not gay, and elegantly touching upon a thousand topics of interest, he exhausted none; but deviating from one to another by easy gradations, like a sunbeam flying over a landscape in an autumn day, he threw a momentary light upon each, and then left it imperceptibly,

ceptibly, as we can scarcely tell where the ray ends, and where begins the shadow of the cloud. Charles saw his motive was to lead his thoughts from himself; but with a common perverseness of melancholy, his mind at first revolted at the idea of being cheated, as it were, of its grief. But gradually the varying wit of his companion carried him insensibly along with it, and, both pleased and interested, he quite forgot the motive, to listen to the conversation, and admire the man; and by the time that evening had arrived, though still somewhat brought down from his usual elevation of disposition, he was easy and contented. Thus passed the first day; the next Mr. Wilmot had in some degree relapsed into gravity, and Charles had regained more cheerfulness; so that by the time they had arrived at Geneva, both had returned pretty nearly to their original character. The weather was not the most favourB 3 able

« AnteriorContinuar »