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The Aeroplane: commencement

Literary,   pp. 40-[60]

Page 40

T    H     E        A    E    R    O    P    L    A    N    E 
I looked a last farewell at the poor victims on board, and jumped 
with many others as the ship made its final plunge. When I came 
to the surface-oh, what a dreadful scene of gasping humanity bat- 
tling in vain against the Grim Reaper; the despairing shrieks of the 
drowning, and the heart-rending prayers-how awful! How weak is 
the power of man when striving with the elements! 
I swam. I knew not whither only that I was departing from the 
scene of horror and that alone was a comparative blessing. My past 
experience told me that I could keep afloat for a good many minutes, 
and so I swam. And my thoughts turned to the father, mother, and 
sister now, doubtless, in their watery graves, food for the fishes! 
Oh, God! why should I live more? But still I swam. And just as 
fatigue first came to me I heard what seemed the sound of breakers, 
and I swam toward the sound. Soon a small island appeared to my 
vision, and at last I found myself safe on a sandy shore and after a 
time I felt myself sliding into a half sleep half stuper and I wished 
with all my heart that I might never awake. 
I opened my eyes and saw a-vision looking down at me with a gaze 
in which both curiosity and fright could be seen. And such a vision 
man never saw, and such a vision will never be seen. Not that 
her beauty was perfect. Fault might have been found with the too 
high forehead and the too pale skin. Her supreme beauty lay in her 
eyes,-large, brown, liquid, luminous. But how futile would be my 
poor attempt to do justice to them!  And how they looked througfl 
one, not piercing, but rather gliding into every fibre, every recess 
of the brain, body and soul. What innocence, what volume of thought 
and feeling rested in their depths! 
Her light brown hair fell in ringlets, and the sun appearing in 
the east wrought golden flames to spring from it and created a 
heavenly halo about her head. Her dress consisted of a long flow- 
ing garment of interwoven green fibrous substance which covered all 
Page Forty 

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