V^NOE AND GL^ENOE 979
and read the magic words, the words of wedlock, and Zealand got many acres of land as a wedding gift. This is a true statement, it has been duly proclaimed, you have the fact before your eyes. The island Glsenoe has vanished.
WHO WAS THE LUCKIEST ?
I What lovely roses ! ' said the sunshine. ' And every bud will unfold, and be equally beautiful. They are my children ! I have kissed them into life ! '
' They are my children I' said the dew. ' I have suckled them with my tears.'
II should think that I am their mother ! ' said the rose-hedge. ' You others are only god-parents, who gave christening gifts, according to your means and good will.'
' My lovely rose-children !' said all three of them, and wished every blossom the greatest luck, but only one could be the luckiest, and one must be also the least lucky; but which of them ? '
' That I shall find out ! ' said the wind. ' I travel far and wide, force myself through the narrowest chink ; I know about everything outside and inside.'
Every blossomed rose heard what had been said, every swelling bud caught it.
Then there came through the garden a sorrowful, loving mother, dressed in black ; she plucked one of the roses, which was just half-blown, fresh and full ; it seemed to her to be the most beautiful of them all. She took the blossom into the quiet, silent chamber, where only a few days ago the young, happy daughter had romped about, but now lay there, like a sleeping marble figure, stretched out in the black coffin. The mother kissed the dead child, then kissed the half-blown rose, and laid it on the breast of the young girl, as if it by its freshness and a mother's kiss could make the heart beat again.
It was as if the rose were swelling ; every leaf quivered with delight at the thought, ' What a career of love was granted to me ! I become like a child of man, receive a mother's kiss and words of blessing, and go into the