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TO THE LIGHTHOUSEwhich the sea is slowly eating away, and there tostand, like a desolate sea-bird, alone. It was hispower, his gift, suddenly to shed all superfluities,to shrink and diminish so that he looked barerand felt sparer, even physically, yet lost none ofhis intensity of mind, and so to stand on his littleledge facing the dark of human ignorance, howwe know nothing and the sea eats away the groundwe stand on—that was his fate, his gift. Buthaving thrown away, when he dismounted, allgestures and fripperies, all trophies of nuts androses, and shrunk so that not only fame but evenhis own name was forgotten by him, he kept evenin that desolation a vigilance which spared nophantom and luxuriated in no vision, and it wasin this guise that he inspired in William Bankes(intermittently) and in Charles Tansley (obsequi-ously) and in his wife now, when she looked upand saw him standing at the edge of the lawn,profound reverence, and pity, and gratitude too,as a stake driven into the bed of a channel uponwhich the gulls perch and the waves beat inspiresin merry boat-loads a feeling of gratitude for theduty it has taken upon itself of marking thechannel out there in the floods alone.

"But the father of eight children has nochoice. . . ." Muttering half aloud, so he brokeoff, turned, sighed, raised his eyes, sought the72