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“How is it that I see you so well ?" I “Do you know him, then ?" asked my guide, when I had a little re “ I know all the alcades, sir; and what covered my composure. " I thought your shows that I little merit the surname which business in this world was ended for- I bear is, that all the alcades do not know ever.”
me; but, among them all, he who is now “ A miracle has been wrought in my seeking you is the most cunning, rapabehalf,” replied Perico, raising his eyes cious, and diabolical.” to heaven; “ but it seems, sir, that my Although I had reasons for thinking resurrection vexes you. You think that, this portrait exaggerated, I was somewhat in spite of my wish to be agreeable to shaken in my resolution. Perico then reyou
presented to me, in really touching lan“ Not at all, Perico—not at all. I am guage, the pleasure his wife and children delighted to see you alive : but how did would feel in giving their benefactor an this miracle happen ?”
asylum for the night ; and, being obliged “I know nothing except that it was
to decide between two protectors, equally accomplished in time for me to take my interested, I chose him whose greediness place again among the spectators of the had the least gloomy appearance, and refight, and even to try another ascent. Isolved to follow the lépero. had just confessed and received absolution. It was night ; we traversed suspiciousIt was a singular opportunity for ventur- looking alleys, deserted squares, dark ing my life without risking my soul; I streets, quite strange to me; lamps were took advantage of it, and was lucky ; for more and more scarce ; I was decoyed into this time I fell upon my legs when the the depths of those suburbs where justice bull tossed me, to the great delight of the dares not penetrate ; and I was unarmed, public, who showered reals and demi-reals at the mercy of a man whom I had just upon me.
Then, finding myself—thanks heard make a terrible confession : to leave to you, above all—with a well-filled purse, him abruptly in these regions was dangerI gratified my taste for dress by purchas-ous; to follow him not less so. ing this suit at a broker's, and it gives me “ But where do you live?" I asked a very respectable appearance. You saw Perico. with what consideration the alcade treated He scratched his head and made no anme! There is nothing like being well swer, upon which I repeated my question. dressed, sir !"
“ To say the truth,” he replied at last, I saw well enough that the fellow had “having no regular dwelling, I live a little cheated me once more ; and that his pre- everywhere.” tended suffering, like his confession, had “And your wife, your children, and the been merely to obtain some piastres from concealment you offered me?" me; but I must say, that my anger melt “I had forgotten,” replied the zaragate, ed away before the comic dignity with unmoved, “ that I sent my wife and chilwhich the lépero strutted about in his rag- dren yesterday to to Queretaro ; but, ged cloak during this strange tale. My as to a hiding-place-" aim now was to get rid of a troublesome “Do you offer me that also at Querecompanion ; and I said to him, with a taro ?" I asked, recollecting, too late, that smile
the wife and children of this honest man “ If I reckon rightly, the illness of your were as imaginary as his dwelling. children, your wife's confinement, and “ As to a hiding-place," answered Peryour own shroud, have cost me nearly a ico, still unmoved, “ you shall partake of hundred piastres; by excusing you all such as I know how to find, when I have this, I think I amply repay the service not the means of hiring a home ; for bullyou have just done me. I am now near fights and large windfalls like this do not my home, and I again return you my come every day. There,” he added, pointthanks."
ing to a reflected light which flickered at “ Your home, sir! Are you thinking a distance, “perhaps that will assist us.” of that?” cried Perico. “At this moment Advancing toward the light, I found it your house is being searched by soldiers; proceeded from a lamp; and near it the they are seeking for you in your friends' watchman, in a yellowish cloak, not much houses ; you do not know what alcade better than that of Perico, was crouched you have to do with."
upon the pavement, gloomily watching
the clouds; he did not move at our ap- crossed the hall to an interior court; there, proach.
having tied my horse to a ring in the “ Halloo, friend," asked the zaragate, wall, which the man pointed out, we as“ do you know any velorio hereabouts ?" cended about twenty steps, and I followed
“ Yes, to be sure! not far from hence, Perico into a well-lighted room. near the bridge of Ejizamo, you will find now to learn what a velorio was. one ; and, if I were not afraid of the régi
(To be continued.) dor taking his round, or could find some brave boy to take care of my cloak and
BEAUTIFUL PARABLES. lantern, I would go myself to the fête.” “ Much obliged,” said Perico, civilly.
“Hold every mortal joy
With a loose hand!” “ We will take your hint;" while the watchman, looking surprised at my dress,
We clutch our joys as children clutch their
flowers; which agreed ill with Perico's, said
We know them sweet, yet scarce believe them “Gentlemen like this are not much in the habit of frequenting those meetings.”
Till our hot palms have smirch'd their colours " It is a case of necessity; this gentle And press’d their dewy blood out, unaware.
rare, man has made a debt which prevents his returning to his own house to-night.”
But the wise Gardener, whose they were, comes “ That is a different thing; there are
by, debts which one puts off paying as long Mournful, yet sweet, and pitiful, though stern,
And, while we are not looking, with mild eye, as possible,” replied the watchman; and, Takes them. turning away from us, he cried in a dole
Then in a moment we discern ful voice
By loss, what was possession, and half wild, “Nine o'clock, and a stormy night !" | Lift up rash empty hands like wrongèd child, then resumed his former attitude, while Crying, "Why didst thou snatch my posies
fine?” many distant watchmen repeated the
But he says tenderly, “ Not thine, but mine;" words,
And points to those stain'd fingers which do I followed Perico dejectedly, leading my prove horse by his bridle, it being against the Our fatal cherishing, our cruel love: police rules of Mexico to ride on horseback
At which we, chidden, a pale silence keep,
Yet evermore must weep, and weep, and weep. in the city after vespers ; and I was not inclined for further trouble with the al- So on through devious ways and thorny brakes, cades. My guide's words had excited my
Quiet and slow, our shrinking feet he takes,
Led by the purpled hand, which, laved with curiosity ; and I wished to know what a
tears, velorio could be. In about ten minutes More and more clean beneath his sight appears : we reached a bridge, over a narrow canal, At length the heavy eyelids trembling shinebordered by dilapidated houses, while a
"I am content. Thou took'st but what was
thine," lamp, dimly burning before a picture of souls in purgatory, was gloomily reflected And then he us his beauteous garden shows, in the muddy and stagnant water, and Where, bountiful, the Rose of Sharon grows.
Where in the breezes opening spice-buds swell, watchdogs were loudly baying the moon,
And the pomegranates yield a pleasant smell ; alternately hidden and revealed by a cur While to and fro peace-sandal'd angels move tain of driving clouds, for it was the rainy In the calm air that thes—not we call love;
All else was silent; and in these An air so fine and rare, our grosser breath two lines of melancholy-looking houses And thus, we, struck with longing, evermore
Cannot inhale till purified by death. the sole light was from the windows of Do sit and wait outside the Eden-door, the first floor opposite to the sacred pic- Until the gracious Gardener maketh signture, which showed a room well lighted “Enter in peace. All this is mine—and thine." up.
Perico knocked at the door of this house, and after some time half of it was True Joy.—That is the true and chief joy opened, the other half being fastened as which is not conceived from the creature, usual by an iron chain ; and a man's voice but received from the Creator; which cried, “Who is there ?"
none can take from thee; whereto all “ Some friends, who are come to pray pleasure, being compared, is torment, all for the dead and rejoice with the living," joy is grief, sweet things are bitter, all replied Perico, without hesitation. glory is baseness, and all delectable things
We entered, and, lighted by the porter, / are despicable.—Quarles.
walks in a city, pursuing his
ing us out of the way. And all this, too on sunny days and foggy days alike.
Now, I am much inclined to think, that
has a fascinating study in the figures that state of our digestion, much of this is due pass him on his way. There is often a to our wearing spectacles. I refer to history in a face. One thing he will not metaphysical spectacles, which magnify, fail to note—the strange coincidence which diminish, color, or decolorize the objects gives a character, independent of neigh- that float before the mind's eye. Incrediborhood or weather, to each city ramble. ble as it may seem, none of us are entirely There are days when every one he meets guiltless of spectacles of one kind or other, seems comely or interesting : patriarchal for these psychological instruments fall old men lead beautiful little girls ; roman- into two classes-the permanent or contic foreigners, with their black hair artis- stitutional, and the dependent or subjective tically arranged, seem actually clean ; varieties. The permament are tinted with nurse-maids, seized with sudden affection the shade of the character of the wearer, for their quiet little charges, kiss them and are apt to magnify and discolor the with ardor; laughing children run after acts of men of opposite dispositions, one another, shouting at the top of their parties, or opinions. They invest things voices. He sees young girls, all grace- with attributes one-sided, strange, or false. some looking at him not without interest; The man of science, who views all things some glancing their eyes downward, con- through the medium of his ology or scious of interesting him—all pretty. ography ; the man of art, by the light of
There are other days when every one his favorite authorities ; the man of arhe comes upon is hideous : unhealthy gumentative temperament, with a searchchildren, born of shocking courts and back ing glance of his critic eye; the poet, slums; importunate beggars, hideous and with his dreamy, aërial gaze; the pracimpudent; miserable faces, suggestive of tical man with his cui bono—all these have vice and starvation : features, full of permanent glasses, more or less optically ugliness and woe. Wherever he goes, wrong, and yet all the subject of implicit, these haunt him. Funerals, with a wretch- unhesitating faith. ed show of penurious upholstery, bead- The dependent vary with the state of ledom, and badly paid, badly executed mind of the owner : if he is happy, they sorrow, cross his path. He lights upon make everything seem light and cheerful ; accidents, and runs the risk of being en- if sad, they invest creation with a gray tangled in a row, in which a besotted, neutral tint; if exceedingly enraged, they red-nosed thing, rag-covered and dirt- seem, like Iceland spar, to have a double hidden, plays a conspicuous part.
refraction, and to distort everything. And On some days there is an extraordinary so arise misjudgments, false calculations, demonstration in our favor: people make and inaccuracies of all kinds. room as we pass ; every one is strangely The permanent glass is notoriously polite; we are evidently popular; strang- common ; indeed, it may be said to be ers point the way, as if our inquiries were universal. It tends to establish that exa personal compliment; and if our toes quisite diversity of character and opinion are trodden on, or we ourselves thrown on so conducive to our wellbeing. It becomes the toes of others, the offending parties a bore, however, at times. Professor seem full of contrition, and respectfully Dingo is apt to chip the stones of buildings beg our pardon. And there are other with his geological hammer. Talk rapdays when there seems a general con- turously of the sea to a friend great in spiracy against us : we are insulted, snub- chemistry, and he gives a look worthy of bed, and snapped at; dogs run between Fadladeen, as he says: “Chloride of our legs, or yelp as we go by ; no one sodium ; chloride of magnesium; yes, sir, moves out of our way; people run against and chloride of ammonium: a vast reposius, and then growl, or swear at us for tory of all the soluble matters of our globe. being so hard. We are looked down upon It is beautiful to think how the great contemptuously. Fat old women ocean lixiviates our earth. I have mybump upon us in the midst of crossings, at self detected recently sulphate of copper the moment when angry cabmen are shout- |-blue vitriol, you know." Here our
friend raises his eyes with the look dog- stance, from the symbol to the verity, the matic.
mention of the spectacles critical will at There now
comes up a mechanical once bring before our mental vision the genius, full of hydraulics, pneumatics, and optical instrument itself, with a pair of dynamics. He is talking something about cynical orbs peering behind it; eyes the specific gravity of the vessel yonder; never intended, it would seem, for the but his conversation will certainly not purpose of seeing, but preëminently adapted rank among the imponderables.
for quizzing. Men have long known that The argumentative gentleman inter- a white cravat gives an aspect of beneposes : “Blue, sir ; it is not blue ; do you volence, and, of course, a popular reception call that blue ?—it is green. Rough, sir; among masses, fanatical in their admiraexcuse me, but it is n't-calm as a lake : tion of wealthy liberality—they have long what you took for breakers was very been aware that the optic instrument likely a flock of wild geese. Ships, my which gives its name to this paper, imparts good sir ; surely you are joking: they are an air of professional dignity to him who only fishing-boats and barges."
wears it-encircles his brow with an inAnd now the poet is appealed to. tellectual halo. Their use is not confined See, ah, beautiful thing !
to the reviewer, nor indeed to the satirist
himself. Long ago, Diogenes, the first O, how sweet it is to wander By the sea-shore, when the night
of cynics, walked this earth, with a lantern Has wooed the stars, those eyes of angels;
to guide him, in the search for an honest Gems unutterably bright,
It was an endless task to such a Painting with their golden light
soul, for his critical spectacles were so Another heaven on the waters; Flashing on our startled sight
awfully powerful, that the world seemed Eyes brighter than earth’s fairest daughters." | like a demonland, and its inhabitants
monsters. It is not strange that he beAnd now comes the practical man. came in fact what he saw others in imWonderfully cheap and convenient this agination; that while he quizzed mankind carriage by water. All very well your with spectacles critical, himself became poetry, but give me the useful. See how the butt of eternal sarcasm, the classic cheap salt is; we get it for a mere nothing specimen of the wildest extreme of folly. out of the sea. Look at our fisheries- There are spectacles of another kind our potash and soda manufactories-our common to every age of life. The babe iodine. I like to see the sea turned to that smiles in its dear mechanical way account. Poetry is all very well for weak when it is pleased, has huge glasses beminds and sentimental young ladies. I fore its pretty laughing blue eyes. It like the practical, the useful — that's all sees them not; we see them not; but I care about.”
The poet, it may be, pon- could we paint the images that lie upon its ders to himself on the line of demarcation budding mind, that float before its tiny between the useful and the useless. He imagination, they would be strange unalso wonders whether that which elevates realities to us beings of stern, veritable the soul and feelings of the people, is not life. The old forgotten times, that have a as important as that which only raises dreamy record in the musty chronicles of their material condition. He is perplexed, history, when giants warred with goblins, for he, too, has his spectacles, and en- or piled mountains to the skies; when tertains an indefinite idea of sacrilege every marshy valley was the home of some when he hears of the transmutation of human reptile or zoophytish monsternature's beautiful works into pounds, shil- those old forgotten times are the pen-andlings, and pence. He views practical ink sketches of the world as painted in an
a set of hedge-clipping, valley- infant's eye. Every green leaf is strange filling, mountain-leveling, forest-clearing and wonderful; every sunny bank, a fairy's factory-mongers, and forgets that these home. Undoubted Jacks kill real giants; art-Goths and nature-Vandals fabricate his historic Cinderellas sport slippers of comfortable clothes, produce his pleasant genuine gold—not gilded, nor electrodinners, and waft him at his command plated, but massy, gleaming gold; stars hundreds of leagues away to spots of are angels' eyes; the moon, a playthingloveliness and romance.
only far away To turn from the shadow to the sub- Pupilage succeeds to infancy. The
school-boy sports another kind of eye- metamorphosis of a friend, and that friend glass. The world is a huge playground ; a lady, must be very distressing. Forstudy, a species of torture ; happiness and tunately, however, the glasses which cause half-holidays are synonyms. The great the mischief are very fragile—the slightest optical property of these spectacles is shock will break them; and this is a their near-sightedness. I believe a wear- merciful provision, for their long coner was never known to look beyond the tinuance is said to end in the breaking of vacation. He is seldom able to see the a much more important organ—I refer to consequences of neglecting a lesson. the heart, which is reported to have beShould he be so acute, so far-sighted, as come fractured under such circumstances. to foresee punishment, he strives to exhibit To these succeed, often more suddenly, counterfeit proficiency, or, it may be, the spectacles of prose-life. The world, endeavors to administer an excuse with which before was one chaos of alpine peaks sufficient adroitness. But as to anything and alpine chasms, now takes the form of beyond-ignorance and its inconveniences a vast flat, bounded by bills-tailors' bills,
- he has not the slightest idea in the butchers' bills, doctors' bills. The most world.
singular effect of these prose-life specA don at cricket; a proficient in mar- tacles, is their power of instantly squaring ble-playing ; a graduate in horse-manage- certain numbers : a family of four, for ment and dogdom-these are his heroes. example, will seem to be one of sixteen; He has thoughts of going to sea, and pines a delay of five minutes in the serving of for the life of a Crusoe. He is rarely fond dinner will appear at least five-and-twenty; of books. His literary acquirements con- while the extravagant accounts incurred sist principally in the copying of holiday at the milliner's and silversmith's by the letters, and the perusal of storybooks, re- lady referred to—who, by the by, has now flections and moral passages carefully i regained her wonted looks, and turned out omitted. Above all, he has not the slight- no angel whatever-seem not only to est sympathy with the optic incongruities square, but to cube spontaneously. He of his next stage; I refer to the romantic looks upon his romantic era as a very silly era of human life. Now, the romantic delusion, and seems heartily ashamed of it. spectacles are really, in some respects, very He revels in his morning paper, and has enviable. The bright tinting they cast over been known to read through the supnature, unreal though it be, is full of poetry plementary advertisements with evident and beauty. I speak of the milder forms, relish. He is in a sea of business : to for the imperfections of vision at such a his eyes, it seems hemming him in on all time frequently amount to absolute blind sides. Respectability is his motto, and
The technical term for such cases that species of employment which the is, being in love; and really the assumption young call pleasure, his exceeding bane. of romantic spectacles often produces noth- Last of all come senile spectacles—the ing more or less than acute monomania. spectacles of old men. As the romantic The wearer is constantly haunted by peer with telescopic gaze into the future, some form which he denominates “thee." so the aged look back into the past; things Poetry of the very acme of sentimentality were very different when they were young; is quoted, or often, it may be, misquoted the world has strangely altered—it is a spontaneously. If constant allusions to the great deal worse than it used to be ; their moon, and fondness for moonlight under school-boy lessons, their early labors, various circumstances, be criteria, these their rectitude of conduct, were colossal. spectacles impart somewhat of lunacy. They live in a world of to-day, but it The figure I mentioned as haunting the seems like a fresh picture in dissolving wearer, often bears a strong but flattering views, which mars and is marred by the likeness to some lady of his acquaintance, world of yesterday. whose personal charms, however, are strangely distorted, if his descriptions are Avoid STRIFE. Easily and from the to be relied upon.
Her teeth become smallest chink the bitter waters of strife pearls, and her eyes are gems; light hair are let forth, but their course cannot be is transmuted into gold; while red hair is foreseen ; and he seldom fails of suffering said to be auburn. No wonder the poor most from their poisonous effect who first youth becomes dejected: so strange a l allowed them to flow.