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The Pamphlet Collection of Sir Robert Stout: Volume 28

January

I write little now, for I am living too much. The days are stealing away and lessening one by one, and still Faith plays about the room, though very softly now, and still the cheery sunshine shimmers in, and still we talk with clasping hands, less often and more pleasantly. Morning and noon and evening come and go; the snow drifts down and the rain falls softly; clouds form and break and hurry past the windows; shadows melt and lights are shattered, and little rainbows are prisoned by the icicles that hang from the eaves. I sit and watch them, and watch the sick-lamp flicker in the night, and watch the blue morning crawl over the hills; and the old words are stealing down my thought: That is the substance, this the shadow; that the reality, this the dream.

I watch her face upon the pillow; the happy secret on its lips; the smile within its eyes. It is nearly a year now since God sent the face to me. What it has done for me he knows; what the next year and all the years are to be without it, He knows, too. It is slipping away,—slipping. And I—must—lose it.

Perhaps I should not have said what I said to-night; but being weak from watching, and seeing how glad she was to go, seeing how all the peace was for her, all the pain for us, I cried, "O Auntie, Auntie, why can't we go too? Why can't Faith and I go with you? But she answered me only, "Mary, He knows." We will be brave again to-morrow. A little more sunshine in the room! A little more of Faith and the dolly!