I SLEEP THE SLEEP 317
me bread and wine, and I sat up to partake of it. Adam stood on one side of me, Eve and Mara on the other.
' You are good indeed, father Adam, mother Eve, sister Mara,' I said, ' to receive me ! In my soul I am ashamed and sorry !:
' We knew you would come again !' answered Eve.
' How could you know it ? ' I returned.
' Because here was I, born to look after my brothers and sisters!' answered Mara with a smile.
I Every creature must one night yield himself and lie down,' answered Adam : ' he was made for liberty, and must not be left a slave! '
' It will be late, I fear, ere all have lain down !' I said.
' There is no early or late here,' he rejoined. ' For him the true time then first begins who lays himself down. Men are not coming home fast; women are coming faster. A desert, wide and dreary, parts him who lies down to die from him who lies down to live. The former may well make haste, but here is no haste.'
' To our eyes,' said Eve, you were coming all the time: we knew Mara would find you, and you must come!'
I How long is it since my father lay down ?' I asked.
'I have told you that years are of no consequence in this house,' answered Adam; 'we do not heed them. Your father will wake when his morning comes. Your mother, next to whom you are lying,—'
' Ah, then, it is my mother!' I exclaimed. 'Yes—she with the wounded hand,' he assented; ' —she will be up and away long ere your morning is ripe.' '1 am sorry.' ' Rather be glad.'