THE CITY 345
stones of the hoarding earth!—silvery cranes ; red flamingoes; opal pigeons ; peacocks gorgeous in gold and green and blue ; jewelry humming birds !—great-winged butterflies; lithe-volumed creeping things—all in one heavenly flash!
I I see that serpents grow birds here, as caterpillars used to grow butterflies ! ' remarked Lona.
'I saw my white pony, that died when I was a child. —I needn't have been so sorry; I should just have waited !' I said.
Thunder, clap or roll, there had been none. And now came a sweet rain, filling the atmosphere with a caressing coolness. We breathed deep, and stepped out with stronger strides. The falling drops flashed the colours of all the waked up gems of the earth, and a mighty rainbow spanned the city.
The blue clouds gathered thicker; the rain fell in torrents ; the children exulted and ran; it was all we could do to keep them in sight.
With silent, radiant roll, the river swept onward, filling to the margin its smooth, soft, yielding channel. For, instead of rock or shingle or sand, it flowed over grass in which grew primroses and daisies, crocuses and narcissi, pimpernels and anemones, a starry multitude, large and bright through the brilliant water. The river had gathered no turbid cloudiness from the rain, not even a tinge of yellow or brown ; the delicate mass shone with the pale berylline gleam that ascended from its deep, dainty bed.
Drawing nearer to the mountain, we saw that the river came from its very peak, and rushed in full volume through the main street of the city. It descended to the gate by a stair of deep and wide steps, mingled