Page:An Unfinished Song.djvu/164

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159
AN UNFINISHED SONG

mine, mine, and yet not mine. From out the vastness of space came a cry of despair, of agony.

"I ask not to be his," called out my feeble heart. "I ask but to see him, to hear his voice at times. Grant me that, oh Fate, and I shall feel compensated for the sorrow of existence." There was no wounded pride in this, I had no pride to wound, humility alone claimed me as her own.

Thus as the days went by the fire in my soul burnt on. I knew not whether time would bring peace, but it seemed to me there was but one flame that could extinguish the agony, the pain that would not leave me, and that was the last, the flame that consumes all that is mortal in man. Was I really to drag on this life until I was old? I shuddered at the very thought. Was this, then, the love I had dreamt of, was it to find its realisation in a yearning not to be satisfied, a groping for something that could not be grasped?

Chanchal came to see me one afternoon. She was my bosom friend. We were in the habit of spending one day together at least once a week. Her searching eyes noticed