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THE DRAMA OF THE DOCTOR'S WINDOW.
IN THREE ACTS, WITH A PROLOGUE.
"A tedious brief scene of young Pyramus,
I must wait !” The Doctor's room,
Where I used this expression,
Attached to that profession;
And skinless Gladiator,
The entering spectator.
No one would call “ The Lancet"
gay, Few could avoid confessing That Jones, “On Muscular Decay,”
Is, as a rule, depressing :
So, leaving both, to change the scene,
I turned toward the shutter, And peered out vacantly between
A water-butt and gutter.
Below, the Doctor's garden lay,
If thus imagination
Unused to vegetation,
That brought to mind a gallowsAn empty kennel, mouldering,
And two dyspeptic aloes.
No sparrow chirped, no daisy sprung,
About the place deserted ;
A battered doll, inverted,
The vagrant cat that scanned it, Sniffed doubtfully around the skirt,
But failed to understand it.
A dreary spot! And yet, I own,
Half hoping that, perchance, it Might, in some unknown way, atone
For Jones and for “The Lancet,”
I watched ; and by especial grace,
. Within this stage contracted, Saw presently before my face
A classic story acted.
Ah, World of ours, are you so gray
And weary, World, of spinning,
You told at the beginning ?
The early “stage successes,
“ With new effects and dresses."
Small, lonely “ three-pair-backs” behold,
To-day, Alcestis dying;
Ulysses' bones are lying ;
How fell an Indian Hector ;
Briseis' next protector ;
Still Menelaus brings, we see,
His oft-remanded case on; Still somewhere sad Hypsipyle
Bewails a faithless Jason ;
And here, the Doctor's sill beside,
Do I not now discover
From Pyramus, her lover ?
ACT THE FIRST.
The cat, that like an arrow
And then, across the narrow,
Hid by a garden-bonnet,
Paused, turned, and climbed upon it.
A child of five, with eyes that were
At least a decade older,
Flung careless round her shoulder,
Whose black, uncomely rigour Seemed to sardonically mock
The plaintive, slender figure.
What was it? Something in the dress
That told the girl unmothered ;
Or was it that the merciless
Black garb of mourning smothered
In the dull garden-corner,
More piteous and forlorner.
Then, as I looked, across the wall
Of “next-door's” garden, that is-
Surmounting fence of lattice,
Ripe lips, half drawn asunder,
Of frankest childish wonder.
Rounder they grew by slow degrees,
Until the swinger, swerving,
Intentest orbs observing,
And,- ,-as with gathered kirtle,
Thrust through the budding myrtle,
Fled in dismay. A moment's space,
The eyes looked almost tragic;