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Methinks I see her standing here

The creature of my hand,
Whose grace a glory will confer
On me through earth's remotest year,

While burns the Day-God's brand :
My love to her—my love to her

Till Time runs out bis sand!
She smiles, she smiles, 'mid all my care-

Whose beauty like the flame
Of mind through marble shining clear,
Revealed the golden harbinger

That lit my lowly name :
My love to her—my love to her

The mistress of my fame!
Bright issues from the monster's lair

That virgin blithe and coy,
Whose limbs symmetrical appear,
Though alien to the thrills of fear,

Yet warm with throbs of joy:
My love to her—my love to her-

À love without alloy !
A vital lustre gilds the air

Where tenderly she leans,
Along yon grizzly form whose glare
Shot gleams of horror far and near

Around the Grecian scenes :
My love to her—my love to her-

Mine own bright Queen of Queens ! No flaw is hers, no faíntest blur

Who ’neath the forming blows
The mallet like a dulcimer
Struck down the chisel’s iron spur

In Art's parturient throes :
My love to her-my love to her

Who like some nymph arose-
Arose with that angelic air

Which Sime and death defied :
The alms, at once, and almoner
Of Beauty to the realms that bear

A heart to truth allied :
My love to her-my love to her-

My soul's affianced bride !

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I. THERE is no misfortune on earth like a troubled conscience: there is nothing that will wear the spirits and the frame like a burdensome secret that may

not be told. It will blanch the cheek and sicken the heart; it will render the day a terror and the bed weary: so that the unhappy victim will be tempted to say with Job, When shall I arise and the night be gone, and he is full of tossings to and fro unto the dawning of the day: his sleep is scared with dreams and terrified with visions.

Strange that it should be thus with a young and lovely woman, one not yet two years married. The previous season Mrs. Oscar Dalrymple had been the gayest of the gay in the London world, and now she had come to town again, but much changed. Could it be illness which had changed her? Scarcely. For although she had passed through a fever in the winter, the traces of it were gone now, and she was entirely recovered from it.

The season was at its height, and Mrs. Dalrymple was plunging into its vanities headlong, when Mr. Dalrymple, in quitting the house one afternoon, encountered a young lady who walked lame.

“Ah, Alice!” said he. Have you come to London ?” “We arrived yesterday,” replied the young lady, who was the sister of Mrs. Dalrymple and the cousin of her husband. "Is Selina at home ?”

“ Yes she is, for a wonder. Waiting for somebody she intends to go out with.”

“ How is she?"
“ I cannot tell you how she is. Very strange, it seems to me.”

“I have been anxious about her,” replied Miss Dalrymple, " for in a letter I received a few weeks ago from Mrs. Cleveland, she said she thought Selina anything but well.”

“ Take my arm, Alice, and walk with me a few paces,” said Mr. Dalrymple. “There's something the matter with Selina, and I cannot make it out,” he continued. “She acts, for all the world, as if she had committed murder. I told her so the other day.”

“Committed murder !” echoed the astonished Alice Dalrymple.

“She's frightened at her own shadow. When the post used to come in at the Grange she would watch for the boy, dart down and seize the letters, as if she feared I might read the directions of hers. When she was recovering that fever, and I would take her letters in to her, she became blanched and scared. Often I ask her questions, or address remarks to her, and she is buried in her own thoughts and cannot hear me. She starts and moans in her sleep; and more than once I have awoke in the middle of the night and found her gone from the bed and pacing the dressing-room."

“ You alarm me," exclaimed Alice. 6 What can it be?" I have thought that she was pining after London fooleries, but”


“Oh no," interrupted Alice, “ that could not cause her to start from her bed at night.”

“I was going to say so. And now that she is in the midst of them again, she is no better. Alice, she is mad after these gaieties and follies, worse than she was last year; and that need not be. I wished not to come this season, and told Selina the expense, last, had been such that I could not afford it, but she would. She would, Alice. I wonder what it is that chains her mind to this Babel of a city. I hate it.”

Mrs. Dalrymple was in her bedroom when Alice entered, dressed, and waiting to go out: dressed with expensive elegance. When the first moments of meeting had passed, Alice sat down and looked at her: her cheek was thin, and its brilliant bloom told more of hectic than of health.

“ Selina !" exclaimed Alice, " what is the matter? You are much altered.”

Am I? People do alter. You are altered. You look ill.”

“Not more so than usual,” replied Alice. “I get weaker with time. But you are ill :' I can see it. You look as if you had something preying your

mind.” “Nonsense,” said Selina, starting from her sister. “ You are fanciful."

“ What is it?" persisted Alice. “ If I have, your knowing it would do me no good, and would worry

And yet," added Mrs. Dalrymple, " I think I will tell you. I have felt lately, Alice, that if I did not tell somebody I should go mad.”

Alice rose, and laid gentle hold of her. 6. Let us sit down on the sofa as we used to sit together at the Grange, when we were really sisters. But, Selina, if you have wanted a confidant in any grief, who so fit as your husband ?

“ He!" shrieked Selina—"he! It is the dread of his knowing it, the anxiety I am at, daily and hourly, to keep it from him, that is wearing me out. Sometimes I think I can no longer wage the war," she added, in a dread whisper, “but must put an end to it all

, as Charles did.” Alice Dalrymple's blood seemed to curdle as she listened to the last words, and her face turned of a ghastly whiteness. She could not answer them, she did not dare to answer, or to remonstrate.

“ What have you done ?” she shivered.

“Ruined him, and ruined myself," was Mrs. Dalrymple's reply, untying her bonnet and jerking it from her head on to her lap. " You think I have a happy home: if you could only see what that home has been to me of late !"

“ Selina !” exclaimed her sister, faintly, “you are trying me beyond my strength. Why keep me in suspense ? Of what nature is your fault ?"

“Debt,” was Mrs. Dalrymple's curt response. “I have contracted debts that neither he nor I can pay, thousands upon thousands ; and they are rendering my life a-I will not say what-upon earth.”

"Debts ! thousands upon thousands !" confusedly uttered Alice Dalrymple.

“ It is so."

“How did you contract them ? Not as--as-Charles did ? Surely you have not that infatuation upon you ?”

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“No," answered Selina, gloomily, “not that. As bad a one though. I owe it all for dress.”

“I do not understand,” repeated Alice, after a pause of astonishment.

“I do. Damercau's bill for last season was between three and four thousand pounds. It is over four thousand now.”

Alice Dalrymple felt bewildered. She did not quite understand, even yet.

“It is not possible for one person to owe all that in a year,” she said.

“Not possible ?” repeated Mrs. Dalrymple. “ Some ladies and I could tell you their names---spent double ; treble ; four times what I did.”

“ And so they led you on!”.
“Something led me on. If one is in the world, one must dress."

“ No, Selina: not as you have done. Not to ruin. The generality of people, even those with a small income, as yours is, do not dress beyond their means."

“And make sights of themselves. I don't choose to."
“ Better that, and have peace of mind,” remarked Alice.

“Peace of mind ! peace of mind!" returned Mrs. Dalrymple; “ do not mention it to me. I shall never know it again.”

“Oh, Selina, I hope you will. I hope some remedy may be found. How much do you say you owe?”

“ There's four thousand to Damereau, and
“ Who is Damereau ?”
“ Goodness, Alice, if you

did come to town till this season, you ought to know who she is, without asking. Madame Damereau's the great milliner and dressmaker ; everybody goes to her. You are as ignorant as a child. Then I owe for India shawls, and lace, and jewels ; and furs and things. I owe six thousand pounds if I owe a farthing."

“What a sum !" echoed Alice, aghast. “Six thousand pounds !"

" Ay, you may well repeat it! Which of the queens was it who said that when she died the name of Calais would be found engraven on her heart? Mary, I think. Were I to die, those two words, six thousand, would be found engraven on mine. They are never absent from me. I see them written

up in figures in my dreams ; I see them as I walk ; in the ball-room, in the theatre, in the park, they are buzzing in my ears ; when I wake from my troubled sleep they come rushing over me, and I start from my bed, sick and terrified, and cannot escape

them." “You must have dressed in silver and gold,” uttered poor

Alice. “No : only in what cost it : in such things as these," said Mrs. Dalrymple, pulling at her bonnet with both hands, in irritation so passionate, that it was torn in two.

"Oh, pray! pray!" Alice interposed, but too late to prevent the catastrophe. “ Your beautiful bonnet ! Selina, it must have cost three or four guineas. What a waste !"

“Tush!" peevishly replied Mrs. Dalrymple, flinging the wrecks to the middle of the room.

"A bonnet more or less what does it matter ?" Alice sat, in thought; looking very grave, very pained, very perplexed. " It appears to me that you are on a wrong course altogether, Selina. The imprudence already committed cannot be helped, but you might strive to redeem it."

"Strive against a whirlpool,” sarcastically responded Mrs. Dalrymple.

“You are getting deeper into it: by your own admission, you are having new things every day. It is adding fuel to fire." “I can't


naked.” you

must have a large stock of dress by you."

you think I would appear in last year's things ? I can't and I won't. You do not understand these matters, Alice, and cannot be expected to know better.”

“ Then you ought not to go out: you ought to have stopped at the

6 But " Do


“ I could not stop there. I was eating away my heartstrings. Excitement is necessary to me to drown care."

“ You can only do one thing," observed Alice, after a pause of reflection : “confess all to your husband. If things are so bad, they must be kept from getting worse.”

“Be quiet, Alice. Do not mention his name. That is adding fuel to fire, if you like.”

“ It is cruel to suffer him to incur the expense attendant on another London season. If you object to tell him the truth yourself, shall I do it? I should not like the task, but for your

sake“ Hold your tongue, I say, Alice," was the excited interruption. “How dare you offer to interfere between me and my

husband?” Selina, do be calm. If you take it in this light, of course I must be silent. There is no cause for your agitation ; I should not speak to Oscar without your full permission. How strangely you are altered !"

“ I have had enough to alter me.".

“What is to be the end of all this?" resumed Alice, speaking the words in a musing tone, rather than as a question.

“ Ah, that's it! The End. But you need not hasten it. And, as if the thought of that were not enough, I have another worry on me DOW."

“ What else ?” sighed Miss Dalrymple.

“Damereau is pressing for her money,” replied Selina. “ She has hinted that she cannot give me further credit.'

“The very best thing that could happen,” thought her sister.

“What a shame it is that there should be so much worry in the world !” fretfully exclaimed Mrs. Dalrymple.

“Three parts of the worry we create ourselves,” replied Alice; “ bring it on by our own acts. And no worry ought to have the power very seriously to disturb our peace,” she continued, in a whisper.

• Now, Alice, I know what you are hinting at: you are going to bring up some of those religious notions of yours. They will be worse than lost upon me.

One cannot live with one's body in this world, and one's heart in the next.”

“Oh yes we can,” said Alice, earnestly. "We" “Well

, I don't suppose I am going into the next, yet; unless I torment myself out of this one ; so don't go on about it,” was the graceless reply of Mrs. Dalrymple. But as Alice rose to leave, her mood changed.

“Forgive my fractiousness, Alice; indeed you would excuse it if you only knew how truly miserable I am. It makes me savage with myself and with everybody else."


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