eternities,the eternal past, the eternal future. The light shines only on a small space around her; therefore, she needs must yearn towards the unknown; and the voices and shadowy movings which come to her from out the cloudy pillar of inspiration have each one echoes and answers in her own expecting nature. Its mystic imagery are so many talismans and gems inscribed with unknown hieroglyphics; she folds them in her bosom, and expects to read them when she passes beyond the veil.
At this time in our story, the whole St. Clare establishment is, for the time being, removed to their villa on Lake Pontchartrain. The heats of summer had driven all who were able to leave the sultry and unhealthy city, to seek the shores of the lake, and its cool sea-breezes.
St. Clares villa was an East Indian cottage, surrounded by light verandahs of bamboo-work, and opening on all sides into gardens and pleasure-grounds. The common sitting-room opened on to a large garden, fragrant with every picturesque plant and flower of the tropics, where winding paths ran down to the very shores of the lake, whose silvery sheet of water lay there, rising and falling in the sunbeams,a picture never for an hour the same, yet every hour more beautiful.
It is now one of those intensely golden sunsets which kindles the whole horizon into one blaze of glory, and makes the water another sky. The lake lay in rosy or golden streaks, save where white-winged vessels glided hither and thither, like so many spirits, and little golden stars twinkled through the glow, and looked down at themselves as they trembled in the water.
Tom and Eva were seated on a little mossy seat, in an arbor, at the foot of the garden. It was Sunday evening, and Evas Bible lay open on her knee. She read,And I saw a sea of glass, mingled with fire.
Tom, said Eva, suddenly stopping, and pointing to the lake, there t is.
What, Miss Eva?
Dont you see,there? said the child, pointing to the glassy water, which, as it rose and fell, reflected the golden glow of the sky. Theres a sea of glass, mingled with fire.
True enough, Miss Eva, said Tom; and Tom sang
Id fly away to Canaans shore;
Bright angels should convey me home,
To the new Jerusalem.
Where do you suppose new Jerusalem is, Uncle Tom? said Eva.
O, up in the clouds, Miss Eva.
Then I think I see it, said Eva. Look in those clouds!they look like great gates of pearl; and you can see beyond themfar, far offits all gold. Tom, sing about spirits bright.
Tom sung the words of a well-known Methodist hymn,
That taste the glories there;
They all are robed in spotless white,
And conquering palms they bear.
Uncle Tom, Ive seen them, said Eva.
Tom had no doubt of it at all; it did not surprise him in the least. If Eva had told him she had been to heaven, he would have thought it entirely probable.
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