class="i2">So you may find your new instrument useful, To—shall we say—gauge the New Leaders' authority, Or look at that small, dwindling Liberal majority?
Since Paganinni, fingers never wrought Such marvels in the mystic realm of sound As his who from the ringing keyboard brought A world of wondrous wizardry, which bound E'en ignorance in an astonished rapture. That world is closed, whose magic "sesame" He only held, where he alone could capture The spirits of strange woe and witching glee, And set them sounding in dull human ears. Music whose memory moves our smiles and tears.
New Nursery Rhyme.
(On the New (Nursery) Art.)
Hey! 'Tis a riddle, A do and a diddle, A fad, and a lunatic lune; A scrawl and a smudge, And in fact arrant fudge, To be kicked to Art's limbo—and soon.
Monetary Multum in Parvo.
Do not spend your life in spending; Borrow never, promptly pay; Save—but not with toil unending; Give—but wisely—what you may: He who lends himself to lending, Gives himself away.
The Journalistic Jettatura.
Ibsen is angry that some Paul Pry Has "blown the gaff" on his Evil Eye. Personal prattle and egotist bounce, These great Ibsen may well denounce. Not to bewitch, but to swagger and spy, Is the basilisk task of our "Evil I."
LYRE AND LANCET.
(A Story in Scenes.)
PART XXII.—A DESCENT FROM THE CLOUDS.
SCENE XXXII.—In the Elizabethan Garden. Time—About 11 A.M.; Lady Maisie and Undershell are on a seat in the Yew Walk.
Lady Maisie (softly). And you really meant to go away, and never let one of us know what had happened to you!
Undershell (to himself.) How easy it is after all to be a hero! (Aloud.) That certainly was my intention, only I was—er—not permitted to carry it out. I trust you don't consider I should have been to blame?
Lady Maisie (with shining eyes). To blame? Mr. Blair! As if I could possibly do that!! (To herself.) He doesn't even see how splendid it was of him!
Und. (to himself). I begin to believe that I can do no wrong in her eyes! (Aloud.) It was not altogether easy, believe me, to leave without even having seen your face; but I felt so strongly that it was better so.
Lady Maisie (looking down). And—do you still feel that?
Und. I must confess that I am well content to have failed. It was such unspeakable torture to think that you, Lady Maisie, you of all people, would derive your sole idea of my personality from such an irredeemable vulgarian as that veterinary surgeon—the man Spurrell!
Lady Maisie (to herself, with an almost imperceptible start). I suppose it's only natural he should feel like that—but I wish—I do wish he had put it just a little differently! (Aloud.) Poor Mr. Spurrell; perhaps he was not exactly——
Und. Not exactly! I assure you, it is simply inconceivable to me that, in a circle of any pretensions to culture and refinement, an ill-bred boor like that could have been accepted for a single moment as—I won't say a Man of Genius, but——
Lady Maisie (the light dying out of her eyes). No, don't—don't go on, Mr. Blair! We were all exceedingly stupid, no doubt, but you must make allowances for us—for me, especially. I have had so few opportunities of meeting people who are really distinguished—in literature, at least. Most of the people I know best are—well, not exactly clever, you know. I so often wish I was in a set that cared rather more about intellectual things!
Und. (with infinite pity). How you must have pined for freer air! How you must have starved on such mental provender as, for example, the vapid and inane common-places of that swaggering carpet-soldier, Captain—Thickset, isn't it?
Lady Maisie (drawing back into her corner). You evidently don't know that Captain Thicknesse distinguished himself greatly in the Soudan, where he was very severely wounded.
Und. Possibly; but that is scarcely to the point. I do not question his efficiency as a fighting animal. As to his intelligence, perhaps, the less said the better.
Lady Maisie (contracting her brows). Decidedly. I ought to have mentioned at once that Captain Thicknesse is a very old friend of mine.
Und. Really? He, at least, may be congratulated. But pray don't think that I spoke with any personal animus; I merely happen to entertain a peculiar aversion for a class whose profession is systematic slaughter. In these Democratic times, when Humanity is advancing by leaps and bounds towards International Solidarity, soldiers are such grotesque and unnecessary anachronisms.
Lady Maisie (to herself, with a little shiver). Oh, why does he—why does he? (Aloud.) I should have thought that, until war itself is an anachronism, men who are willing to fight and die for their country could never be quite unnecessary. But we won't discuss Captain Thicknesse, particularly now that he has left Wyvern. Suppose we go back to Mr. Spurrell. I know, of course, that, in leaving him in ignorance as you did, you acted from the best and highest motives; but still——
Und. It is refreshing to be so thoroughly understood! I think I know what your "but still" implies—why did I not foresee that he would infallibly betray himself before long? I did. But I gave him credit for being able to sustain his part for another hour or two—until I had gone, in fact.
Lady Maisie. Then you didn't wish to spare his feelings as well as ours?
Und. To be quite frank, I didn't trouble myself about him; my sole object was to retreat with dignity; he had got himself somehow or other into a false position he must get out