South-sea Idyls

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J.R. Osgood, 1873 - Hawaii - 354 pages
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Sixteen tales of various islands in the Pacific Ocean.
 

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Page 5 - The sea-birds build their nest against my root, And eye my slender body's horny case; Widowed within this solitary place, Into the thankless sea I cast my fruit ; Joyless I thrive, for no man may partake Of all the store I bear and harvest for his sake. No more I heed the kisses of the morn; The harsh winds rob me of the life they gave; I watch my tattered shadow in the wave And hourly droop and nod my crest forlorn, While all my fibers stiffen and grow numb, Beck'ning the tardy ships, the ships...
Page 341 - Let me picture it once more — one mossy street between two babbling brooks, and every house thereof set each in its own moated wilderness. This was Papeali. Like rows of cages full of chirping birds those bamboo huts were distributed up and down the street. As I walked I knew something would cause me to turn at the right time and find a new friend ready to receive me, for it always does. So I walked slowly and without hesitation or impatience until I turned and met him coming out of his cage, crossing...
Page 30 - who loved me, and wanted me to live with him; all his people wanted me to stop, also; his mother and his grandmother had specially desired it. They didn't care for money; they had much love for me, and therefore implored me to stay a little. Then the valley was most beautiful; I was tired; after our hard riding, I needed rest; his mother and his grandmother assured me that I needed rest. Now, why not let me rest here awhile?
Page 340 - I foreswore all blood relations and blushed for there presentatives of my own color as I footed it right royally. Therefore, I was enabled to scorn the fellow who scorned me while he flashed the steel hoofs of his charger in my face and dashed on to the village we were both approaching with the dusk. What a spot it was ! A long lane as green as a spring meadow, lying between wall-like masses of foliage whose deep arcades were frescoed with blossoms and festooned with vines. It seemed a pathway leading...
Page 338 - for I could continue to stand as long as I liked and as idly as it pleased me, in spite of him ! There were bridgeless streams to be forded, but the Tahitian is a nomad continually wandering from one edge of his fruitful world to the other. Moreover, he is the soul of peace towards men of good-will ; I was invariably picked up by some barebacked Hercules, who volunteered to take me over the water on his brawny brown shoulders, and could have easily taken two like me. It was good to be up there while...
Page 37 - ... some surprise in the shape of a new fruit, or a new view to beguile me. I was, indeed, beguiled; I was growing to like the little heathen altogether too well. What should I do when I was at last compelled to return out of my seclusion, and find no soul so faithful and loving in all the earth beside ? Day by day this thought grew upon me, and with it I realized the necessity of a speedy departure. There were those in the world I could still remember with that exquisitely painful pleasure that...
Page 27 - I saw a straw hat, bound with wreaths of fern and maile; under it a snow-white garment, rather short all around, low in the neck, and with no sleeves whatever. There was no sex to that garment; it was the spontaneous offspring of a scant material and a large necessity. I'd seen plenty of that sort of thing, but never upon a model like this, so entirely tropical — almost Oriental. As this singular phenomenon made directly for me, and having come within reach, there stopped and stayed, I asked its...
Page 12 - Beyond the rising and the setting I shall be soon ; Beyond the calming and the fretting, Beyond remembering and forgetting, I shall be soon.
Page 345 - ... seeking shelter. When the gate closed after them, I heard them all cooing at once, but the world knows nothing further. Where would I be dropped? asked the driver. In the middle of the street, please you, and take half my little whole for your ride, sir!
Page 336 - good night," which was repeated in a chorus as I withdrew to my coop and found my feathered guests had beaten in the temporary barricade erected in the broken window, entered and made themselves at home during my absence, — a fact that scarcely endeared the spot to me. Next morning I was unusually merry...

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