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Adler, Philip A. (ed.) / Wisconsin literary magazine
Volume XVII, Number 4 (January 1918)

Kinnan, Marjorie
The gypsy,   p. 91


Page 91

WISCONSIN LITERARY MAGAZINE
91
It is the curse, the cold curse, the strong curse, the
curse of iron. It cannot be lifted; do not ask me.
Huntsman. Go to the forest. You know the
haunts of the fairies. Beg them to lift the curse.
Mist-of-the-Moon. It is no use. They are very
angry. The doe was the pet of Queen Titania.
It browsed under the fairy thorn on elfin fern. The
curse is heavy, and its price is immortality. He who
lifts it forfeits all his knowledge of fairy lore and
magic; he is outlawed from the land of the immortals,
but it is the curse of iron. The doe was killed with an
arrow tipped with cold iron. Do not ask me.
Little Boy.  (running up and catching the fool's
hand) Do you not remember, Mist-of-the-Moon,
out in the east meadow how you told me-
Mist-of-the-Moon. No, no, I cannot. I would
lose all, all!
Villagers and Huntsmen (greatly excited.)  Can
you lift the curse? Can you lift the curse?
Mist-of-the-Moon. (In a strange, far-away voice.)
He must be touched by iron, cold iron, but the hand
which holds it must be an elfin hand.
(The Villagers pick up various iron utensils about
the cottage; the Huntsmen offer their swords.)  Here,
here is iron. Mist-of-the-Moon save our lord, save
Sir Hugh, or we shall all feel the hand of an oppressor.
Mist-of-the-Moon (shrinking back.)  No, no, I
cannot touch it. I am afraid.
Little Boy. Mist-of-the-Moon, do you remember
when Sir Hugh's lady came to visit your mother when
she was ill, and brought her a basket of sweet wine
and white bread? She will be sore grieved when her
dear lord is brought home under this wicked spell.
Mist-of-the-Moon (stretching out his arms toward
the open window.) Good-bye, oh green wood, good-
bye, my fairy friends. I leave you forever for the
folk in housen. Henceforth is the bird's song to me
but an empty warble; the wind in the tree-tops will
tell me no sweet tales; I will see no faces in the mist
or in the moon-beams. (He turns and catches blindly
at the handle of a greasy iron griddle held out by one
of the villagers. Shuddering, he goes to the bedside
of the knight.)  I give you all I have to give; the
gates of fairy-land are closing behind me. I am a
mortal.
(He touches with the bottom of the griddle the still
hand lying on the coverlet. Sir Hugh sits up looking
about him bewilderedly.  The people shout with joy
and crowd around him. Mist-of-the-Moon creeps off
and crouches. heavy-eyed by the fire-side, the griddle
still in his hand. He is completely forgotten in the
excitement.)
Little Boy, (running up to him.) Mist-of-the-
Moon, come out in the meadow and play with me now,
and tell me some more wonderful tales.
Mist-of-the-Moon, (dully.)  I know   no tales,
child. I must stay to cook the dinner and wash the
griddle. Run away.
Dame Crutch, (who has not stirred from her
stool.) Ah, he grasped the frying-pan first, and now
he will be my scullery boy. 'Tis well he did not
seize a sword.
ADELIN BRIGGS.
The Gypsy
All the world is fire to me,
And white flame is my kin,
And red flame, loud with ecstasy,
I love to dress me in.
Red flame and white flame,
And blue flame when 'tis eve,
Life, and love they're all the same,
And there to take or leave.
And oh! some morning when the sun
Is burning up the sky,
I'll off to Bagdad, with someone
As fiery mad as I !
MARJORIE KINNAN.
January, 1918


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