Puslapio vaizdai

curiosity like this. He had been far more enthusiastic over Amabæ and Rotifera under a microscope. He saw them dispassionately and without emotion, as wellknown specimens of a familiar species of fauna. He lived for his research. Science has her celibates and martyrs, as religion has. Of course he would see her and hear her to-morrow. Was she old or young? Was she married or single? A widow, perhaps? Was she beautiful? At that moment she was merely a waft of perfume on the stairs.

He tried the piano, but after strumming a few bars he closed the lid sharply and viciously. It was exasperating. He sat in the bay-window and looked out to sea. The sun had set, and the water was turning to those weird grays and blues one sees in some of Watts's pictures. It made him shudder. The sky-line was clearly defined—indigo against the waning light. He saw the summer visitors taking their after-dinner promenade along the road beneath him. Night after night he watched them. He knew most of them by sight, recognizing them in a desultory way. There was the daintily stepping French girl in her mauve frock and leghorn hat. There was the lady who looked like an operatic singer, magnificent in physique and a splendid swimmer. After his fashion he admired them. But they were there, visible and tangible. They did not distract him with evasive odors and mysterious suggestions.

The next evening Preston made his second discovery about the female; in fact, he made several discoveries. First of all, he heard the rustle of her dress. He was in his bedroom at the time, and she ran up-stairs and into the room adjoining his own. Running! Evidently she was young and active. The discovery pleased him. She was not in her bedroom more than half a minute, and ran down-stairs before he had a chance of catching a glimpse. The perfume lingered for a little.

Through the open door he saw-he could not help seeing-her travelingtrunk. There was nothing impalpable

about that. It was covered with labelscabin numbers, names of hotels, the careless scribble of customs. It was clear at a glance that she was rich. She had been to Cairo, Buenos Aires, New York, Paris, Zermatt, Milan, and Mentone. He did not intend being so curious, but the fact remained. She was still a mystery. Why should she want to stay in apartments when she could afford the European hotels?

He made a third discovery as he went out to post. Her room door was wide open as he passed, and he saw a box of cigarettes on the sideboard. For a moment he felt a resentment, but he excused her. Certainly she was young,—young and modern, -with dashing ideas and Parisian dresses. The cigarettes explained all that at once.

His fourth discovery took his breath. away. He opened his door and stepped on the dark landing just as she came rushing full tilt up the stairs. She ran into him at the corner.

"Oh, desh!" she exclaimed.

"I beg your pardon!" said Preston, instinctively.

"I'm awfully sorry," she added, and

was gone.

He trod out a spark on the carpet, and distinctly observed the two odors of scent and cigarette.

He returned to his room, and his heart was beating. He had not seen her, -it was too dark to see any one on that landing,-but he had had a host of sensations all in a bunch, and he wanted to sort them out. There were her voice, her animation, her impetuosity, her mettle.

"Oh, desh!" he repeated, but he could not get the effect as he had heard it.

Despite the darkness he gathered that she was tall, and also that she was dressed in something light, some silky material the color of which he could not even guess. "Oh, desh!" he said again. That pleased him best of all.

On the third evening the female had a companion. companion. Preston could hear talking below him, and occasionally an outburst of clear laughter,-a rill of sweetness, it

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"Can you hear?"

"And bring my wrap, will you?"

It was not her husband, after all. Preston was relieved, immensely relieved. Yet what difference did it make? There were two ladies in the room beneath him, but their husbands would be coming over any day. Possibly they were in France.

He had made another discovery: she was Helena. It was a noble name. She must be fair and tall to merit such a name.

The chatter went on below, and the peals of laughter became more frequent. It was all so high-spirited, so brimful of vitality, that it made him feel young again.

There was the music, too. For some reasons Preston wished there had been no music. The singer had a sweet voice, a trifle too tremulant, perhaps, but very firm on the high notes. It had color, a certain vividness of color, that suggested a brilliant personality; but he wished she had sung something better than the latest songs. It seemed incompatible for a Helena to be singing that stuff. She might as well be reading penny novelettes at once. The pianist was very poor, indeed, but that was partly the fault of the instrument. In any case, it did n't matter. It was only Helena's companion.

Preston made no further progress in his discoveries that night.

There was nothing special the following evening. Helena and her friend had been away all day, and it was getting dusk when they returned. They were chattering and laughing with unusual animation in the down-stairs room, and the sound came in at his open window, mingled with the rhythm of the waves. He could not distinguish what they said, yet he imagined he knew the spirit of their conversation: there had been some diverting escapade that day, due to Helena's impetuosity, no doubt.

Later on they went out of doors and sat at the end of the jetty. Preston could not see what they were like, for it was almost dark; but he saw them as silhouettes against the sea. They were still talking with great eagerness, with swift gestures, and emphatic shakes of the head. He believed they were quarreling. He had no difficulty in deciding which was Helena. Her companion was shorter and plumper, and her temperament was less vivacious. She did not seem the type of woman who would rush headlong up the stairs in the dark. Nor would she say "Oh, desh!" when she collided with a stranger.

So many women, Preston mused, were sedate and dignified. They took their opinions ready-made and lived by social regulation. regulation. Helena was not like that. She was audacious, free-spirited, and inclined to please herself. Her very gestures bespoke a native fund of energy and independence. She would not care a rap what anybody thought. She had a knack of getting into scrapes and doing unconventional things and smashing her way out of difficulties. He wished he could see her face. He was sure she was beautiful. To-morrow, perhaps, he would be able to see her.

The next day was Sunday, and in the morning Helena and her friend went into the sea. They emerged from the house in dressing-gowns and ran down the jetty to the water. Helena's gown was pale blue, and she had a blue bandana cap. Dropping the gown, her bathing-dress was navy-blue, with white braid. The sunlight gleamed like ivory on her limbs.

It was sheer joy to watch Helena take to the water. She literally danced into the sea, as if the very touch of the living waves electrified her whole body. She danced and then dived, and, emerging with powerful side-strokes, swam out an immense distance. Her companion was a good swimmer, but she did not riot in the water as Helena did. They returned eventually, and sat on the beach, enjoying a sun-bath. The next time Preston looked they were in the water again, floating, with hands locked behind the neck. But he never saw them come indoors, and did not see them the rest of the day. At nightfall they sat at the end of the jetty again, -black shapes cut out of cardboard, — and the sound of laughter reached his ears from afar.

Preston did not see them for several days after that. On Wednesday, however, he saw Helena standing back to him in a telephone-box. She had a frock of wonderful color, like the palest of pale carnations. He noticed her big pearl earrings, which shook as she talked through the 'phone. She seemed to be excited, and he heard her saying:

"Look here, I want to know who told you. . . . Are you going to tell me? . . . I positively refuse to tell you. . . . Look here, who told you? I insist on knowing. Hullo!"

He went away extraordinarily interested. The fragment of dialogue suggested all sorts of possibilities. No doubt she was in another scrape. It was just like her.

That night they went bathing in the moonlight. Nobody else was in the water, and a small crowd stood watching them. The people seemed to be apprehensive for their safety, but Preston laughed. Helena was not afraid.

Two evenings later, Olwen mentioned Helena for the first time.

"Reg'lar cautions, sir, both of them." "Are n't they rather-well off?" "Tons o' money, sir, but they know how to get through it."

"Well, if they enjoy it—"
"Don't they just!"

Preston did not ask anything further. Olwen would have enlightened him readily enough had he prompted her, but he felt an unaccountable reluctance. Olwen might tell him something that might spoil it all. He did not even know her name. For all he knew she might be Mrs. Jenkins or Miss Tomlinson. He wanted to think of her as Helena.

The thought of Helena was an elixir to him. She exhilarated. She made him feel romantic and adventurous. The sense of her proximity was almost an idyll. She was in the room below him at that very moment. He adored her, yet he had never seen her face. He had made the attempt to see her more than once. On this last evening he felt that he never should see her again. She would go away as she came, a mystery.

He was intensely aware of her existence. He wondered if she had been even dimly aware of his. She had made a difference to him, but he could not possibly have made any difference to her. He longed to tell her something,-something vital and splendid, but such emotions never shape themselves in speech. They are, as she was, thrilling and elusive.

He remembered his piano. He had never opened it since the first evening she arrived, and then he could find nothing to play. But he wanted to play now, if only to declare himself, to make his great affirmation, and bid her good-by. He looked across the sea where the first star of evening, lovely and lustrous, was spilling drops of light. He gazed at it in wonder; it had never been so bewitchingly beautiful before. He sat down to the piano and

"The ladies below are leaving in the played "O Star of Eve" from "Tannhäumorning," she said.


"We'll be a bit quieter again when they 've gone."

"They seem pretty lively, don't they?"

ser." Never until that hour had he felt its passionate ecstasy and pain.

He went on without a pause, extemporizing. He found articulation in music. He became aware of the beauty that leaps

and dances, that maddens with perfumes, and dazes with colors, the rapturous loveliness of the flesh, the glowing perception of animal vitality, audacity, the fearless spirit, the elusiveness of laughter, and of his impotence and desolation.

It cannot be put into language what he put into chords. Night fell upon the earth and sea in deepening tones of blue, but he still played in an ache of exultation. The big star grew whiter and more ravishing. From the room below came no sound.

He had always despised bodily beauty as something temporary; he knew then.

that it alone was immortal. Three things.
possessed his soul: the sense of infinite
time that came from the unresting sea,
the sense of infinite space that came from
the brilliant star, the sense of illimitable
beauty and unfathomable hunger. He had
never seen her face, he had never heard
her name; but he told her that he, too,
was a man. The male cried out to the
female-the ancient cry older than the
sea, younger than the star.
Next day she was gone.

Now at last he could give his whole mind to the treatise on "Dynamical Isomerism."

One Voice



OU were the princess of the fairy-tale
Who spoke in emeralds instead of words,
Whose laughter left an exquisite, bright trail
Of sounds as winged and visible as birds.

I never knew until yours went from me
That any voice could love my name so much,
That just to speak it made it seem to be
A fragrance and a color and a touch.

My days are gestures of bewilderment,
My nights are attitudes of listening,
For fear you may have whispered as you went,
And I shall lose the star-like echoing.




F one were searching for a typical example of the art of painting in France in the late sixties, one could find nothing more representative than the now famous "Salome" of Henri Regnault. It epitomizes the art of the Second Empire, the period with which his brilliant career ended.

Gérôme had led the way to the Orient and first taught the Parisians to open their eyes to the "jeweled reproductions of the East," and his influence was felt by several of the younger men. Regnault, while responding to the call, departed somewhat from the accepted standards of the day. Although he was a master of accurate design, he had at the same time a strange sympathy with fierce, dramatic energy, a quality illustrated by his "Judith and Holofernes" in the Salon of 1869 and by his "Execution without Judgment under the Califs" in the Salon of 1870. In this same year appeared also the "Salome."

One's first impression in coming into the presence of this work is of a figure in strong relief against a lighter background, and it is only after closer study that one discovers this effect has been attained by the subtlest modulations of color. Indeed, it must have been the color and pictorial effect that first made the appeal to Regnault, for Théophile Gautier says of him, "Happily there was not in him what the philosophers and critics call thought: he has but the ideas of a painter, and not those of a litterateur." At first he wished to paint only the model, an African girl. Later, after fitting accessories had been added, the picture was called "The Favorite Slave." After two years of work upon it, Regnault developed a definite purpose and gave it the title of "Salome."

The dominant note in the picture is the mass of wild, black hair placed against the lightest part of a yellow satin curtain that forms the background. The childlike face, with large eyes and parted lips, although in shadow, is suffused with a delicate pink glow. The light falls full on the well-rounded shoulders, which are bare, and from which fall carelessly bits of drapery of light yellow and pink.

The "Salome" was an instant success in the Salon of 1870, and was sold at once. A little later it was resold, and in 1912, after most sensational bidding in which representatives of the Louvre took part, it came into the possession of friends of the Metropolitan Museum, and by them. was afterward presented to that institution. A. T. VAN LAER.

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