Through the tree-tops a pale light falls down upon the forest-path and upon the dark undergrowth of bush and shrubbery. The moon sprinkles the pathway with shimmering spots, and kindles strange lights in the mass of leaves and branches. Here, the blue streaks of light pour down from the tree-trunks like streams of burning spirits; there, in the hollow, the broad fern-branches gleam from out the darkness in colors of emerald gold, and over the pathway the withered boughs tower like huge whitened antlers. But between and beneath, impenetrable, Stygian gloom. Round-faced moon in heaven, thine attempts to light this wood of ours are feeble, sickly, and capricious. Pray keep thy scanty light upon the highway leading to the city; throw thy faded beams not so crookedly before us, for at the left the ground slopes precipitately into morass and water.
Fie, thou traitor! Plump in the swamp and the wayfarer's shoe behind! But that might have been expected. Deceit and treachery are thy favorite pastimes, thou wayward freak of heaven. People wonder now that men of primitive times made a God of thee. The Grecian girl once called thee Selene, and wreathed thy cup with purple poppies, by thy magic to lure back the faithless lover to her door. But that is now all over. We have science and phosphorus, and thou hast degenerated into a wretched old Juggler. A Juggler! And people show thee too much consideration, to treat thee as a thing of life even. What art thou, anyhow? A ball of burnt out slag, blistered, airless, colorless, waterless. A ball? Why our scientists know that thou art not even round--caught in a lie again! We people on the earth have pulled thee out of shape. In truth thou art pointed, thou hast a wretched and unsymmetrical figure. Thou'rt a sort of big turnip that dances about us in perennial slavery--nothing more.