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The Flowers Personified - Two Shepherdesses


Section 10

 
X.
IT IS ALL OVER.

[1] [2] [3] [4] [5]
[6] [7] [8] [9] [10]

 

                     In the village grave-yard a modest tomb has been erected for Bleuette and Coquelicot. Thither, from all the country round, lovers come yearly, on a sort of pilgrimage.

          About this tomb bluebottles and cornpoppies grow in abundance. Nowhere else are their hues so bright and delicate. You would say that the flowers have caught something from the character of those two shepherdesses.

          History will long seek in vain for an instance of devoted affection equal to theirs.

          The grasshopper and the cricket have taken up their abode in the high grass, which grows about the grave of Bleuette and Coquelicot. Day and night they chant around it their mournful ditties.

          A nightingale likewise comes before sunrise, and, concealed in the branches of a willow near, sings her farewell to the two shepherdesses.

          The butterflies and the bees are lonely, as they flit round among the neighboring flowers. The reckless gad-fly and the humming-fly dare not disturb, with their noisy wings, the stillness of this mausoleum.

          Often, as the schoolmaster passes through the cemetery, he stops to cull flowers from the tomb of the two victims. “My dear children,” he says to his pupils, while he shows them the bluebottle and the cornpoppy, -- “this one signifies delicacy, and the other, consolation.” These are two qualities, that have no very direct connection with the story which we relate to you. But we must give up in the presence of the master. He knows better than we do the language of flowers. And yet the young folks of the village take a pleasure, when they have a chance, in twitching his queue, and playing other pranks upon him.

          In order to excuse themselves in the eyes of posterity, for having caused the death of two shepherdesses so delightful as Bleuette and Coquelicot, Lucas and Blaise solemnly affirmed, upon their death-beds, their belief at the time, that the marriage with the judge and the squire had actually been consummated.

          Fifty years after the death of their victims, Lucas and Blaise die, overwhelmed with remorse.

          The following is the inscription on their tomb: –

HERE REPOSE
BLAISE AND LUCAS;
They were
Good fathers, good husbands, good shepherds.
Whosoever thou art,
Stay a moment; drop a tear to their
memories;
Say a prayer for their souls.
R. I. P.

Section 10 of 10:  [1] [2] [3] [4] [5] [6] [7] [8] [9] [10]