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'Twas an autumn eve; the splendor

Of the day was gone,
And the twilight, soft and tender,

Stole so gently on
That the eye could scarce discover
How the shadows, spreading over,

Like a veil of silver gray,
Toned the golden clouds, sun-painted,
Till they paled, and paled, and fainted

From the face of heaven away.
And a dim light rising slowly

O'er the welkin spread,
Till the blue sky, calm and holy,

Gleamed above our head;
And the thin moon, newly nascent,

Shone in glory meek and sweet,
As Murillo paints her crescent

Underneath Madonna's feet. And we sat outside the villa

Where the waters flow Down to the city of Sevilla

Years and years ago.

There we sat-the mighty river

Wound its serpent course along. Silent, dreamy Guadalquiver,

Famed in many a song. Silver gleaming 'mid the plain Yellow with the golden grain, Gliding down through deep, rich meadows,

Where the sated cattle rove, Stealing underneath the shadows

Of the verdant olive grove; With its plenitude of waters,

Ever flowing calm and slow, Loved by Andalusia's daughters,

Sung by poets long ago.

Seated half within a bower,

Where the languid evening breeze Shook out odors in a shower

From oranges and citron trees,

Sang she from a romancero,

How a Moorish chieftain bold Fought a Spanish caballero

By Sevilla's walls of old,

How they battled for a lady,

Fairest of the maids of Spain-
How the Christian's lance, so steady,

Pierced the Möslem through the brain.

Then she ceased-her black eyes moving

Flashed, as asked she with a smile “ Say, are maids as fair and loving

Men as faithful, in your isle ?"

“ British maids," I said, " are ever

Counted fairest of the fair;
Like the swans on yonder river

Moving with a stately air,

“Wooed not quickly, won not lightly

But, when won, forever true;
Trial draws the bond more tightly,

Time can ne'er the knot undo."

“ And the men ?"_" Ah! dearest lady,

Are-quien sabe ? who can say ?
To make love they're ever ready,

When they can and where they may;

“ Fixed as waves, as breezes steady
In a changeful April day-
Como brisas, como rios,
No se sabe, sabe dios."

“ Are they faithful ?”—“Ah! quien sabe?

Who can answer that they are ?
While we may we should be happy.”—

Then I took up her guitar,
And I sang in sportive strain
This song to an old air of Spain.

QUIEN SABE ??

I.
“ The breeze of the evening that cools the hot air,

That kisses the orange and shakes out thy hair,
Is its freshness less welcome, less sweet its persume,
That you know not the region from which it is come?
Whence the wind blows, where the wind goes,
Hither and thither and whither—who knows?

Who knows?
Hither and thither—but whither—who knows?

II.

“ The river forever glides singing along,

The rose on the bank bends adown to its song;
And the flower, as it listens, unconsciously dips,
Till the rising wave glistens and kisses its lips.
But why the wave rises and kisses the rose,
And why the rose stoops for those kisses—who knows.

Who knows?
And away flows the river—but whither—who knows?

III.

“Let me be the breeze, love, that wanders along

The river that ever rejoices in song;
Be thou to my fancy the orange in bloom,
The rose by the river that gives its perfume.
Would the fruit be so golden, so fragrant the rose,
If no breeze and no wave were to kiss them?
Who krows?

Who knows?
If no breeze and no wave were to kiss them?

Who knows ?"

As I sang, the lady listened,

Silent save one gentle sigh:
When I ceased, a tear-drop glistened

On the dark fringe of her eye.

Then my heart reproved the feeling

Of that false and heartless strain,
Which I sang in words concealing

What my heart would hide in vain,

Up I sprang. What words were uttered

Bootless now to think or tell
Tongues speak wild when hearts are fluttered

By the mighty master spell.

Love, avowed with sudden boldness,

Heard with flushings that reveal,
Spite of woman's studied coldness,

Thoughts the heart cannot conceal.

Words half-vague and passion-broken,

Meaningless, yet meaning all
That the lips have left unspoken,

That we never may recall.

« Magdalena, dearest, hear me,"

Sighed I, as I seized her hand“ Hóla! Senor,” very near me,

Cries a voice of stern command.

And a stalwart caballero

Comes upon me with a stride, On his head a slouched sombrero,

A toledo by his side.

From his breast he flung his capa

With a stately Spanish air(On the whole, he looked the chap a

Man to slight would scarcely dare.)

“ Will your worship have the goodness

To release that lady's hand ?”— “Senor,” I replied, “ this rudeness

I am not prepared to stand.

“Magdalena, say"—the maiden,

With a cry of wild surprise, As with secret sorrow laden,

Fainting sank before my eyes.

Then the Spanish caballero

Bowed with haughty courtesy, Solemn as a tragic hero,

And announced himself to me:

“ Senor, I am Don Camillo
Guzman Miguel Pedrillo
De Xymenes y Ribera
Y Santallos у

Herrera
Y de Rivas y Mendoza
Y Quintana y de Rosa

Y Žorilla y’'_“No more, sir; 'Tis as good as twenty score, sir,”

Said I to him, with a frown; “ Mucha bulla para nada,

No palabras, draw your 'spada;
If you're up for a duello,
You will find I'm just your fellow

Senor, I am PETER BROWN!"

By the river's bank that night,

Foot to foot in strife,
Fought we in the dubious light

A fight of death or life.
Don Camillo slashed my shoulder,
With the pain I grew the bolder,

Close, and closer still I pressed;
Fortune favored me at last,
I broke his guard, my weapon passed

Through the caballero's breast.

Down to the earth went Don Camillo
Guzman Miguel Pedrillo
De Xymenes y Ribera
Y Santallos y Herrera
Y de Rivas y Mendoza
Y Quintana y de Rosa
Y Žorilla y-One groan
And he lay motionless as stone.
The man of many names went down,
Pierced by the sword of PETER BROWN!

Kneeling down, I raised his head;
The caballero faintly said,
“ Signor Ingles, fly from Spain
With all speed, for you have slain
A Spanish noble, Don Camillo
Guzman Miguel Pedrillo
De Xymenes y Ribera
Y Santallos y Herrera
Y de Rivas y Mendoza
Y Quintana y de Rosa
Y Zorilla y" —He swooned
With the bleeding from his wound.
If he be living still or dead,

I never knew, I ne'er shall know. That night from Spain in haste I fled,

Years and years ago.

Oft when autumn eve is closing,

Pensive puffing a cigar
As I sit alone, reposing,
Musing half, and half a-dozing,

Comes a vision from afar
Of that lady of the villa
In her satin-fringed mantilla,
And that haughty caballero
With his capa and sombrero,

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