Star Papers; Or, Experiences of Art and Nature

By Henry Ward Beecher | Go to book overview

XVI. SIGHTS FROM MY WINDOW.

UPON what the window opens -- whether upon a narrow, paved street of red houses, a back yard, a landscape, or upon such a noble sheet of water as always awaits my eyes from my rear windows -- will mak a great difference in the thoughts which spring up. It is a sad thing to look upon the life of the street in a city. poor, the worse than poor, the degraded; unquiet of toiling women; ragged children; the feeble valetudinarian; -- all these are human beings as much as the hearty, the prosperous, the gay and sanguine throng among whom they mix. Health has its near contrast; poverty is the shadow of wealth; and happiness and gayety are only golden spots upon toil and trouble -- like sunbeams that reach through the gloom of thick forests, and checker the ground with unaccustomed light.

The problem of life and earthly destiny are painful, and draw out the weary thoughts through many a maze of questionings, from which they return without a sheaf, or a flower, and more in doubt than ever. I do not love the front windows.

But there lies New York Bay, spread wide abroad from my back windows. I'sit in my window, and my thoughts fly over and bathe in the forever changing water, just as I daily see the gulls dip down into it and come up unwet. I walk on it, I hover over it; I go all

-211-

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Star Papers; Or, Experiences of Art and Nature
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Preface. v
  • Contents 7
  • I- Ruins of Kenilworth. -- Warwick Castle. 9
  • II- A Sabbath at Stratford-On-Avon. 27
  • III- Oxford. 41
  • IV- The Louvre -- Luxembourg Gallery. 56
  • V- The Louvre. 70
  • VI- London National Gallery. 77
  • I- A Discourse of Flowers. 93
  • II- Death in the Country. 106
  • III- Inland Vs. Seashore. 110
  • IV- New England Graveyards. 121
  • V- Towns and Trees. 129
  • VI- The First Breath in the Country. 137
  • VII- Trouting. 144
  • VIII- A Ride. 152
  • IX- The Mountain Stream. 161
  • X- A Country Ride. 172
  • XI- Farewell to the Country. 182
  • XII- School Reminiscence. 189
  • Xiii. The Value of Birds. 194
  • Xiv. A Rough Picture from Life. 197
  • Xv. A Ride to Fort Hamilton. 201
  • Xvi. Sights from My Window. 211
  • Xvii. The Death of Our Almanac. 1853. 218
  • Xviii. Fog in the Harbor. 226
  • Xix. The Morals of Fishing. 231
  • Xx. The Wanderings of a Star. 240
  • Xxi. Book-Stores, Books. 250
  • Xxii. Gone to the Country. 256
  • Xxiii. Dream-Culture. 263
  • Xxiv. A Walk Among Trees. 271
  • Xxv. Building a House. 285
  • Xxvi. Christian Liberty in the Use of the Beautiful. 293
  • Xxvii. Nature a Minister of Happiness. 303
  • Xxviii. Springs and Solitudes. 314
  • Xxix. Mid-October Days. 324
  • Xxx. A Moist Letter. 336
  • Xxxi. Frost in the Window. 344
  • Xxxii. Snow-Storm Traveling. 348
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