The Morning Song Of The Birds Is Hushed, For The Dawn Breaks
Less Rosily In The Eastern Skies, But At Twilight They Still Come
And Nestle In The Branches That Were Sunned In The Smile Of Love And
Watered With Its Happy Tears.
And over the grave of each buried
hope or joy stands an angel with strong comforting hands and patient
smile; and the name of the garden is Life, and the angel is Memory.'
Chapter XVI. The decay of Romance.
I have changed my Belvern, and there are so many others left to
choose from that I might live in a different Belvern each week.
North, South, East, and West Belvern, New Belvern, Old Belvern,
Great Belvern, Little Belvern, Belvern Link, Belvern Common, and
Belvern Wells. They are all nestled together in the velvet hollows
or on the wooded crowns of the matchless Belvern Hills, from which
they look down upon the fairest plains that ever blessed the eye.
One can see from their heights a score of market towns and villages,
three splendid cathedrals, each in a different county, the queenly
Severn winding like a silver thread among the trees, with soft-
flowing Avon and gentle Teme watering the verdant meadows through
which they pass. All these hills and dales were once the Royal
Forest, and afterwards the Royal Chase, of Belvern, covering nearly
seven thousand acres in three counties; and from the lonely height
of the Beacon no less than
'Twelve fair counties saw the blaze'
of signals, when the country was threatened by a Spanish invasion.
As for me, I mourn the decay of Romance with a great R; we have it
still among us, but we spell it with a smaller letter.
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