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- Round the World - 5/46 -


deckful of my friends to exult with me in this delight! Nothing but Byron's lines will do it justice. They are too long to quote here, but here are a few lines, which I must repeat:

.... "for the night Hath been to me a more familiar face Than that of man; and in her starry shade Of dim and solitary loveliness I learned the language of another world."

One does feel in such moments, when beauty and sublimity are so overpoweringly displayed, that there are worlds and life beyond our ken, or should be such, for this short day on earth surely should be but the foretaste of a sublime existence which such moods indicate as our congenial home.

* * * * *

FRIDAY, November 8.

I know I went to bed some time early this morning, but after reading last night's effusion in the cold, sober light of day, it strikes me I must have been rather enthusiastic. However, as I intend these notes to be an honest record of my feelings, I shall not attempt to modify the outburst. I know I recited poetry all the evening as I trod the deck, and therefore was in the mood for anything. The captain told me to-night that in all his voyages at this season he had never had one so fine as this. Of course he hadn't. Just our luck, you see. He never had one who enjoyed a trip more--that he is free to confess. I fairly revel in the sea, and pity poor Vandy, who is never quite up to the mark on shipboard. Some far-away ancestor, some good Scotch "deil ma care," who took to smuggling instead of the more fashionable occupation of cattle-stealing, for most of the carles

"Found the meat that made their broth In England and in Scotland both,"

must have implanted in the Carnegies the instinct of the salmon for the sea. I should have been a sailor bold, and sailed the "sawt, sawt faeme," a pirate with a pirate's bride captured _vi et armis_, and all the rest of it.

I am up late again to-night, but, fortunately, there wasn't a soul on deck to hear me trying to sing

"Up, up with the flag; let it wave o'er the sea, I'm afloat, I'm afloat, and the Rover is free!"

The officer on the bridge halloaed to me once, and asked if I wanted any thing; but I forgave him. He could only hear my roaring at his distance; had I been nearer, the melody would no doubt have reached his ears, and he would have known I was singing a tune. Still I thought it politic to affect not having heard him, and quietly stepped down to bed. I shall avoid friend Ryan in the morning, as it would be embarrassing to be asked, especially before the young ladies, who or what I was howling at last night. Some people have no tact, and he might be one of these and fail to comprehend. With the exception of the officers, our crew, sailors, stewards, and all, are Chinese, and in all and each of these capacities they excel. They stand the heat of the furnaces better than any other people, and as stewards are models.

* * * * *

SUNDAY, November 10.

Our third Sunday at sea. The past week has been unbroken sunshine, moonlight, and smooth seas. So far not a ship has been seen. I have read carefully eleven of Shakespeare's plays during the spare hours of the voyage, and have enjoyed those most with which I was least familiar, while some passages in even the best known I wonder greatly at not having long ere this committed to memory, to live there with the rest, and come at my call to minister to me. They are such gems. I have them now, and feel as if I have made new friends, whose angel visits will do me good in days and nights to come. Byron affected to disparage the master, but I note two other gems, beside many I knew of before, for which he stands indebted. The idea in his celebrated lines in "Mazeppa"--

"Methought that mist of dawning gray Would never dapple into day"--

is from _Two Gentlemen of Verona_, and the "Bright, particular star" from _All's Well that Ends Well_. But of course I do not intend any reflection upon Byron. Such was, and is, the all-pervading, transcendent nature of Shakespeare's genius; it was, and is, and shall be for ages yet to come, simply impossible for any writer to avoid drawing from that fountain, for every thing has its "environment," and Shakespeare is the environment of all English-speaking men.

* * * * *

WEDNESDAY, November 13.

Four hundred and fifty miles from land! To-day we have had the only taste of Neptune's power he has favored us with: it began to blow at midnight, and today we have a grand sea. I have just come from the deck after witnessing the Pacific in its fury, and no one would believe that one ocean could differ as much from another as this does from the Atlantic. The waves here move in immense masses. It is an acre of water in motion, as one solid lump, instead of a few feet square dashed into foam. One says instinctively,

"What care these roarers for the name of king?"

I have noticed that even in the smallest waves cast aside by the ship formations are different from those of other seas. It is midnight, and we are only 125 miles from Japan. Not a passenger except myself on deck, but I cannot sleep. Vandy would be with me, I know, poor fellow, were he able to crawl, but the storm has settled him for the present. How strange that none feel sufficient interest to stay awake and watch with me! They would be amply repaid. The phosphorescent sea shows forth its wonders now--not alone in the myriads of small stars of light, which please you in the Atlantic, but at every turn of the foam dashed from the bow and sides of the ship masses of glittering phosphorescence as large as my travelling cap. What creatures these must be which can emit light in such clusters! I leave the deck with the cheery "All's well!" ringing in my ears as the ship dances before the wind which brings to a close our long flight across the Pacific. How we have longed for this last night, and yet how often in after life are we to sigh for a return to the glorious nights we have lived at sea! Where we have

"Mingled with the universe to feel What we can ne'er express, Nor cannot all conceal."

Good-night, my band of dear, dear friends, now in the midst of your daily toil--for it is yet day with you--racking your brains that the holiday wanderer may revel as he is now doing. In the earnest hope that the day may not be far distant when to you may come similar enjoyment when he is the toiler, he goes at last to bed.

* * * * *

FRIDAY, November 15.

Land ahoy! The islands of Japan are in sight, and the entrance to the bay is reached at 4 P.M. The sail up this bay is never to be forgotten. The sun set as we entered, and then came such a sky as Italy cannot rival. I have seen it pictured as deluging Egypt with its glory, but this we have yet to see. Fusiyama itself shone forth under its rays, its very summit clear, more than 14,000 feet above us. The clouds in large masses lay east and west of the peak, but cowering far below, as if not one speck dared to rise to its crown. It stood alone in solitary grandeur, by far the most impressive mountain I have yet seen; for mountains, as a rule, are disappointing, the height being generally attained by gradations. It is only to Fusiyama, and such as it, that rise alone in one unbroken pyramid, that one can apply Schiller's grand line,

"Ye are the things which tower,"

Fusiyama _towers_ beyond any crag or peak I know of; and I do not wonder that in early days the Japanese made the home of their gods upon its crest.

It was nine o'clock when the anchor dropped, and in a few minutes after small boats crowded alongside to take us ashore. Until you are rowed in a sampan in style, never flatter yourself you have known the grotesque in the way of transportation. Fancy a large, wide canoe, with a small cabin in the stern, the deck in front lower than the sides, and on this four creatures, resembling nothing on earth so much as the demons in the _Black Crook_, minus most of the covering. They stand two on each side, but not in a line, and each works a long oar scull-fashion, accompanying each stroke with shouts such as we never heard before; the last one steers as well as sculls with his oar, and thus we go propelled by these yelling devils, who apparently work themselves into a state of fearful excitement. We land finally, pass the Custom House without examination, and with sea-legs which are far from steady reach our hotel. A bite of supper--but what fearful creatures again to bow and wait on us! More demons. We laugh every minute at some funny performance, and wonder where we can be; but how surprisingly good every thing is which we eat or drink on land after twenty-two days at sea!

* * * * *

TUESDAY, November 19.

We have been three days in Japan, and all we can tell you is that we are powerless to convey more than the faintest idea of that which meets us at every turn. Had we to return to-morrow, we should still feel that we had been fully compensated for our journey. Though we have seen most of the strange and novel which Europe has to show, a few hours' stroll in Yokohama or Tokio has revealed to us more of the unexpected than all we ever saw elsewhere. No country I have visited till now has proved as strange as I had imagined it; the contrary obtains here. All is so far beyond what I had pictured it that I am constantly regretting so few of my friends will probably ever visit Japan to see and enjoy for themselves. Let me try to describe a walk. We are at the hotel door, having received the repeated bows, almost to the ground, of numerous demons. A dozen big fellows rush up, each


Round the World - 5/46

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