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MALLOCK W.
In an enchanted island
page 120

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COLOUR AND MOVEMENT Ì17 trition and sorrow and aspiration, of burdens taken away, and of hopes set free to rise again. Are there no burdens borne by the modern world ? And if it has them where will it lay them down ? When I went out the old priest was seated on a bench by the entrance. About him was a group of neophytes, who were being brought up for the priest-hood. Some of the young faces were commonplace and stupid enough ; but on others was the expression which once, with a fulness of meaning, deluded men were accustomed to call spiritual. Happy, I thought, compared with the lot of many of us, was the lot that lay before them. For them in this secret nook the ages of faith survived. · All their years the soul would remain a reality for them ; prayer would never seem to them a waste of despairing breath ; heaven would be near them, invisible saints around them, and life would still promise something beyond itself, until the day when (as men of science would tell us) death came to them quietly, bearing the incommunicable disillusion. Nicosia as a rule, however, breathed lighter thoughts than these, distracting the mind from itself with a mirage of terrestrial beauty. Often I returned alone to the old Armenian house, and mounting to its flat roof looked round me at the city shimmering in the sunshine. Far away were the mountains, pearl-coloured with the haze of noon, and purple shadows, such as lie on a grape cluster, would come creeping down over them beyond the milk-white minarets.

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