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hand—and the one there. He pressed hinand upon her
was he dared to look on her, as she lay in all her beauty, wrapt in a sleep so gentle he could not hear her breathing. She looked as if an angel talked with her in her dreams. Her dark, glossy hair had fallen over her bright, fair neck and bosom; and the moonlight, striking through it, pencilled it in beautiful, thready shadows on her.
Paul sat for a while with folded arms, looking down on her. His eye moved not, and his dark face was the unchanging hardness of stone. His mind appeared elsewhere. There was no longer feeling in him. He seemed waiting the order of some stern power. The command at last came. He laid his hand upon her heart, and felt its regular beat; then drew the knife from his bosom. Once more he laid his hand upon her heart; then put the point there. He pressed his eyes close with one hand- and the knife sunk to the handle. There was a convulsive start, and a groan. He looked on her. A slight flutter passed over her frame, and her filmy eyes opened on him once; but he looked as senseless as the body that lay before him. The moon shone fully on the corpse, and on him that sat by it; and the silent night went on. By and by, up came the sun in the hot, flushed sky, and sent his rays over them. Paul moved not, nor heeded the change. There was no noise nor motion; there were they two together, like two of the dead.
At last, Esther's attendant, entering suddenly, saw the gloomy figure of Paul before her. She ran out with a cry of terror, and in a moment the room was filled with servants. The old man came in, trembling and weak; no tear was wrung from him, nor a groan. He bowed his head, as saying, It is done!
The alarm was given, and Frank, with the neighbors, went up to the chamber. Though the room was nearly full, not a sound was heard. This stillness seemed to spread from Paul and the dead over them all. Frank and some others came near him, and stood before him ; but he continued looking on his wife, as he sat, with his crossed hands resting on his thigh, while the one that had done the murder still held the bloody knife.
No one moved. At last they looked at each other, and one of them took Paul by the wrist. He turned his slow, heavy eye on them, as if asking who they were, and what they wanted.
They instinctively shrunk back, letting go their hold; and his arm fell like a dead man's.
There was a movement near the door; and presently Abel stood directly before Paul, his hands drawn between his knees, his body distorted and writhing as with pain. * * * * There was a gleam and glitter, and something of a laugh and anguish, too, in his crazed eye, as it flitted back and forth from Esther to Paul. At last Paul glanced upon him. At the sight of Abel, he gave a shuddering start that shook the room. He looked once more on his wife; his hair rose up, and his eye became wild. ,"Esther !” he gasped out, tossing up his arms, as he threw himself forward. He struck the bed, and fell to the floor. Abel looked, and saw his face black with the rush of blood to the head; then giving a leap, at which he nearly touched the ceiling, with a deafening shriek that rang through the house, dárted out of the chamber, and, at a spring, reached the outer door.
They felt of Paul. — Life had left him.
Ho! how the giant heaves himself, and strains
Type of the Infinite! I look away .
But on r y spirit stretches, till it's pain
And though the land is thronged again, oh Sea !
INTIMATIONS OF IMMORTALITY.
0, LISTEN, man! A voice within us speaks the startling word, “Man, thou shalt never die!” Celestial voices Hymn it around our souls; according harps, By angel fingers touched, when the mild stars Of morning sang together, sound forth still The song of our great immortality! Thick clustering orbs, and this our fair domain, The tall, dark mountains, and the deep-toned seas, Join in this solemn, universal song;
0, listen, ye, our spirits ! drink it in
The dying hear it; and as sounds of earth.
JAMES FENIMORE COOPER. 1789-.. Mr. Cooper was born in Burlington, N. Y. His father, Judge Cooper, resided alternately at this place and at Cooperstown. Mr. Cooper's fellow-students at Yale were Calhoun, Hillhouse, and other distinguished men. On quitting college, he entered the navy ; but after six years, resigned his office, and began his career as an author. His numerous romances have been re-published in Europe, and he is considered, at home and abroad, one of the greatest novelists of the day. He is now proprietor of the old family mansion at Cooperstown.
[From " The Pilot."] ESCAPE OF THE ARIEL FROM THE SHOALS. “GENTLEMEN, we must be prompt; we have but a mile to go, and the ship appears to fly. That topsail is not enough to keep her up to the wind; we want both jib and mainsail.” “'T is a perilous thing to loosen canvas in such a tempest !” observed the doubtful captain. “It must be done,” returned the collected stranger; “we perish without!” “It shall be done !” cried Griffith, seizing the trumpet from the hand of the pilot.
The orders of the lieutenant were executed almost as soon as issued; and, everything being ready, the enormous folds of the mainsail were trusted loose to the blast. There was an instant when the result was doubtful; the tremendous threshing of the heavy sail seeming to bid defiance to all restraint, shaking the ship to her centre; but art and strength prevailed, and gradually the canvas was distended, and, bellying as it filled, was drawn down to its usual place by the power of a hundred men. The vessel yielded to this immense addition of force, and bowed before it like a reed bending to a breeze. But the success of the measure was announced by a joyful cry from the stranger, that seemed to burst from his inmost soul. “She feels it! she springs her luff!” said he; “if she will only bear her canvas, we shall go clear!"
A report like that of a cannon interrupted his exclamation, and something resembling a white cloud was seen drifting before the wind from the head of the ship, till it was driven into the gloom far to leeward. “'T is the jib blown from the bolt-ropes!” said the commander of the frigate. “ This is no time to spread light duck — but the mainsail may stand it yet.” — “The sail would laugh at a tornado,” returned the lieutenant; “but that mast springs like a piece of steel.”—“Silence all!” cried the pilot. “Now, gentlemen, we shall soon know our fate. Let her luff - luff you can!”
This warning effectually closed all discourse ; and the hardy mariners, knowing that they had already done all in the power of man to insure their safety, stood in breathless anxiety, awaiting the result. At a short distance ahead of them, the whole ocean was white with foam, and the waves, instead of rolling on in regular succession, appeared to be tossing about in mad gambols. A single streak of dark billows, not half a cable's length in width, could be discerned running into this chaos of water; but it was soon lost to the eye, amid the confusion of the disturbed element. Along this narrow path the vessel moved more heavily than before, being brought so near the wind as to keep her sails touching. The pilot silently proceeded to the wheel, and with his own hands he undertook the steerage of the ship. No noise proceeded from the frigate, to interrupt the horrid tumult of the ocean; and she entered the channel among the breakers with the silence of a desperate calmness. Twenty times, as the foam rolled away to leeward, the crew were on the eve of uttering their joy, as they supposed the vessel past the danger; but breaker after breaker would still rise before them, following each