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eagle or savage vulture soared above. It is evening, and the stars are beginning to shine out, and the dusky mountains to look larger in the gloom, and the jackal's shrill melancholy cry is heard; at first, one solitary, startling shriek, which is quickly answered from the dim hills by the lazy, protracted, dreary scream of many, rendering that which was lonely before doubly lonely; for there are sounds with which the spirit owns no companionship.


Then there was the bivouac in Kafferland. Our tent is pitched, our horses and cattle turned out to graze. The fires are lighted, and the Kaffers are collected from the neighbouring kraals, bringing all their little stores for barter baskets of sweet and sour milk, pumpkins, mats, Kaffer and Indian corn; and beads and buttons are the purchase-money; while those who have nothing to sell, beg for barseela, (a present,) with their soft voices; and, to render the appeal irresistible, the infants that hang at the women's backs are taught to put out their little hands; and then the girls tell you that

you are Incos, (a Chief,) and that you are rich, and that you are handsome; and he must be a sterner philosopher than I am who can resist all these.

It is night, and our visitors are gone, and the attendant Kaffers alone remain, and the moon is looking down from a sky without a cloud, and all is still; the tale of the story-teller is finished, and the listeners asleep round the embers, their darkly-shrouded figures forming the radii to a circle whose centre is the fire. There is not a sound, save the river's murmur, as the waters glide calmly and darkly on beneath the thickly-clustering foliage and giant


Then the rides with my silent Hottentot guide, who never interrupts me during the livelong day; and it is now late, and the shadows have shifted round since we mounted, and the evening hour is approaching, so welcome in these climes, where the sun sheds "intolerable day," and we have yet that sombre, shaggy ravine to descend, and to cross the river

that flows in the hollow, and then to climb the steepness of the opposite side. We lead our horses down the narrow, winding path that has been opened through the trees and bushes that meet above, the trunks and shattered branches often impeding us, and showing that the elephants have been lately there; and the guide listens anxiously, and whistles to scare them away. We startle the water-birds from their haunts in the rocky cliff, and hear the guana's sullen plunge in the water as we ford the stream; and now, on ascending the opposite hill, the country becomes more open, and the dimness of evening is stealing over the distant mountains, and the grey river on whose windings we look down, and the near foliage becomes darker and richer in its tints, while the descending dews send forth fresh and fragrant odours from the jasmine with its starry flowers, and from many scented shrubs; and the nighthawk is skimming round with its bat-like flight, and the fire-flies are glimmering like flickering sparks of flame; and ere we reach our

night lodging, the wolf's distant, melancholy whoop is heard,

And then my halting-place during the sultry noon. I have lain stretched at my ease on soft, cool moss and fern, in the shade of a steep, wooded kloof, in that listless, idle mood that the mid-day heat produces, looking up at the deep-blue, cloudless sky, seen through the boughs, and on the bright green, transparent leaves, which formed a canopy above impervious to the sun. Near me, towering above the rest, rose the yellow-wood tree, its trunk of a rich red tint, marked with brown purple veins, the upper branches showing dark, even amidst the foliage of deepest bronze green; while from them trailed light, stringy creepers, and that large one, known in Africa by the name of the monkey-rope, hung around in its twisted strength, far thicker than the largest cable. Close to the yellow-wood tree, and in beautiful contrast with its stern character, was one with bright silver bark, the "lady of the forest," of graceful form, and light flexile boughs, and

feathery foliage, that moved to airs so soft, that they brought no sense of coolness; and there were some covered with rich purple and red blossoms, and others whose trunks were leafed to their roots, like the feathers of the hawk reaching to its talons; and one wild, withered, high-bending trunk, cold grey and black, whose branches had fallen away one by one, and left it desolate, speaking to the heart of death amidst verdure and bloom. Then the tendrils of the wild vine and a net-work of creepers hung around, light as the shadows that they cast, and some mingled their scarlet flowers with the deep foliage of the trees, and fell from their lower branches in light festoons, which those that trailed along the ground rose, in clustering hillocks of rank vegetation, to meet.

In my dreamy mood, in a scene of such deeply sequestered beauty, I have almost felt like the visionary described by Coleridge, who,

"of this busy human heart aweary,

Worships the spirit of unconscious life
In tree or wild flower."

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