“Eh, man! that’s a bonny wee soun’! It’s jist like sma’ sheep-bells—fairy-sheep, I reckon, Maggy, my doo.”
“Lat me hearken as weel,” said Janet.
Hugh obeyed. She laughed.
“It’s naething but a reestlin’. I wad raither hear the sheep baain’, or the kye routin’.”
“Eh, Mr. Sutherlan’! but, ye hae a gleg ee an’ a sharp lug. Weel, the warld’s fu’ o’ bonny sichts and souns, doon to the verra sma’est. The Lord lats naething gang. I wadna wonner noo but there micht be thousands sic like, ower sma’ a’thegither for human ears, jist as we ken there are creatures as perfect in beowty as ony we see, but far ower sma’ for our een wintin’ the glass. But for my pairt, I aye like to see a heap o’ things at ance, an’ tak’ them a’ in thegither, an’ see them playin’ into ane anither’s han’ like. I was jist thinkin’, as I came hame the nicht in the sinset, hoo it wad hae been naewise sae complete, wi’ a’ its red an’ gowd an’ green, gin it hadna been for the cauld blue east ahint it, wi’ the twa-three shiverin’ starnies leukin’ through’t. An’ doubtless the warld to come ‘ill be a’ the warmer to them ’at hadna ower muckle happin here. But I’m jist haverin’, clean haverin’, Mr. Sutherlan’,” concluded David, with a smile of apologetic humour.
“I suppose you could easily believe with Plato, David, that the planets make a grand choral music as they roll about the heavens, only that as some sounds are too small, so that is too loud for us to hear.”
“I cud weel believe that,” was David’s unhesitating answer. Margaret looked as if she not only could believe it, but would be delighted to know that it was true. Neither Janet nor Hugh gave any indication of feeling on the matter.
So a small seed that in the earth lies hid
And dies, reviving bursts her cloddy side,
Adorned with yellow locks, of new is born,
And doth become a mother great with corn,
Of grains brings hundreds with it, which when old
Enrich the furrows with a sea of gold.
Sir William Drummond.—Hymn of the Resurrection.
Hugh had watched the green corn grow, and ear, and turn dim; then brighten to yellow, and ripen at last under the declining autumn sun, and the low skirting moon of the harvest, which seems too full and heavy with mellow and bountiful light to rise high above the fields which it comes to bless with perfection. The long threads, on each of which hung an oat-grain—the harvest here was mostly of oats—had got dry and brittle; and the grains began to spread out their chaff-wings, as if ready to fly, and rustled with sweet sounds against each other, as the wind, which used to billow the fields like the waves of the sea, now swept gently and tenderly over it, helping the sun and moon in the drying and ripening of the joy to be laid up for the dreary winter. Most