But though first love’s
Has passed away in colder light,
I still have thought of you with kindness,
And shall do, till our last good-night
The ever-rolling silent hours
Will bring a time we shall not know,
When our young days of gathering flowers
Will be a hundred years ago.
HALF AN HOUR BEFORE SUPPER.
BY BRET HARTE.
“So she’s here, your unknown Dulcinea—the
lady you met on the train,
And you really believe she would know you if you were to meet her
“Of course,” he replied, “she would
know me; there was never
Forgot the effect she inspired. She excuses, but does not forget.”
“Then you told her your love?” asked the
elder; while the younger
looked up with a smile:
“I sat by her side half an hour—what else was I doing the while?
“What, sit by the side of a woman as fair as
the sun in the sky,
And look somewhere else lest the dazzle flash back from your own to
“No, I hold that the speech of the tongue be
as frank and as bold as
And I held up myself to herself—that was more than she got from her
“Young blood!” laughed the elder; “no
doubt you are voicing the mode
But then we old fogies at least gave the lady some chance for delay.
“There’s my wife—(you must
know)—we first met on the journey from
Florence to Rome;
It took me three weeks to discover who was she, and where was her
“Three more to be duly presented; three more
ere I saw her again;
And a year ere my romance began where yours ended that day on the
“Oh, that was the style of the stage-coach;
we travel to-day by
Forty miles to the hour,” he answered, “won’t admit of a passion
“But what if you make a mistake?” quoth
the elder. The younger half
“What happens when signals are wrong or switches misplaced?” he
“Very well, I must bow to your wisdom,”
the elder returned, “but
Your chances of winning this woman your boldness has bettered no
“Why, you do not at best know her name.
And what if I try your ideal
With something, if not quite so fair, at least more en regle and
“Let me find you a partner. Nay, come,
I insist—you shall
My dear, will you not add your grace to entreat Mr. Rapid to stay?
“My wife, Mr. Rapid—Eh, what?
Why, he’s gone—yet he said he would
How rude! I don’t wonder, my dear, you are properly crimson and