The Lover's Baedeker and Guide to Arcady by Wells, Carolyn
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[Illustration: “THE POST-OFFICE IS IN THE HEART OF AN OLD HOLLOW OAK TREE”]
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THE LOVER’S BAEDEKER AND GUIDE TO ARCADY
BY CAROLYN WELLS
WITH TWENTY ILLUSTRATIONS AND A COVER BY A. D. BLASHFIELD AND MAPS BY GEORGE W. HOOD
NEW YORK FREDERICK A. STOKES COMPANY PUBLISHERS
_Copyright_, 1912, _by_ FREDERICK A. STOKES COMPANY
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_All rights reserved, including that of translation into foreign_ _languages, including the Scandinavian_
THE•PLIMPTON•PRESS [W•D•O] NORWOOD•MASS•U•S•A
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THIS GUIDE BOOK IS DEDICATED TO ANNA WAITT A TOURIST
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ARCADY AND ITS ENVIRONS: PAGE Preliminary Information 1
ROADS OUT OF ARCADY 8
TIME 11 _Time’s Valentine_ 15
CALENDAR 19 _The Lay of Lothario Lee_ 21
CUSTOM HOUSE 24 _Cupid’s Failure_ 28
HISTORY 29 _An Arcady Girl_ 31 _Under a New Charter_ 32
ARCADIA 34 _An Arcadian Lady_ 38
ARCADY: Preliminary Ramble 39
THE ARCADIAN LANGUAGE OF FLOWERS 43
SWEET SHOPS 46 _Heard in Arcady_ 47 _Dithyramb by an Arcadian Poet_ 49
SHOPS 54 _Cupid’s Sale_ 55 _Cupid’s Bill_ 57
INSTITUTIONS AND PUBLIC BUILDINGS: Places of Interest 58 Post-Office 58 The Heart Exchange 61 _The Intercepted Valentine_ 62 Banks 62 The Hospital 62 The Weather Bureau 65 The Campo Santo 65 The Hall of Fame 66 _Ballade of Arcady_ 67
AMUSEMENTS 68 _The Old Story_ 75
SOME ARCADIAN BROMIDIOMS 76
EXERCISE FOR THE LANGUAGE STUDENT: _A Very Pretty Quarrel_ 77 Degrees of Love 79 Definitions 79 _The Spelling Lesson_ 79 _Love in Arcady_ 80 _Insensibility_ 81 _Biographical Sketch of Cupid_ 82
POLITICAL NOTES 84
ARCADIAN LAWS 84
COSTUMES 85 _Then and Now_ 86
WALKS 87 _Old Valentines_ 91
BUSINESS SECTION 93
IT HAPPENED IN ARCADY 94
CALAMITOUS CATASTROPHE 101
ADVERTISEMENTS 103 _Advertisement_ 113
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LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS
The Post Office is in the heart of an old hollow oak tree Frontispiece
_Facing page_ Arcadia (Map) 3
Across the Sea of Dreams in a Transport of Rapture 5
The troubled waters of the Gulf of Wo 7
Mountains of Opposition 8
A radiant Goddess beckoning to him 9
Many with a greed for lucre will follow the 10 Goddess of Fortune
’Tis love that makes the world go round 12
The old clock on the stairs 13
Sun dials and moon dials are approved as they mark the 17 bright hours only
Custom House 25
Arcady and its Environs (Map) 35
On the water all sorts of boats are used 51
Cupid’s Heartware Shop 53
The groves and dells are decorated with beautiful statues 59
Weather Bureau 63
The Mayday Plaisance is a large amusement 69
A Serenader 73
True lovers’ knots may be bought here 89
The blissfully enraptured are conducted to sentimental 107 spots
Love proof window screens 114
Map of the Town of Arcadia End-leaves
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THE LOVER’S BAEDEKER AND GUIDE TO ARCADY
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ARCADY AND ITS ENVIRONS
Over the hills and far away lies Arcady, the Mecca of all Lovers, and therefore the place where Journeys End. Situated on a large tract of enchanted ground, in the Country of Agapemone, Arcady is a beautiful and interesting place, and should be visited by every tourist making the Grand Tour of Life.
Even the shortest sojourn here will yield rich rewards of interest and pleasure, and will contribute more than long years of study to a thorough enjoyment and comprehension of all that is best in life.
The majority of the human race sooner or later find Arcady for themselves, some seeking it with a steadfast purpose, others blindly stumbling into it all unexpectedly.
But to the traveler who would enjoy intelligently its delights, the following hints may not come amiss.
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The Province of Arcadia, whose capital is Arcady (see map No. 1), is bounded on the North by the Land of Heart’s Desire, from which it is separated by the Happy Valley.
On the East it is bounded by the Gulf of Time, across which dimly may be seen, in the distance, the Garden of Eden.
On the West by the Mountains of Opposition, beyond which is the Gulf of Dark Despair.
Along the Southern Shores murmur the lapping wavelets of the Sea of Dreams, whose wonderful phenomenon of Mirage often deceives even an experienced traveler.
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ROUTES: Travelers may approach Arcady by several routes. One of the pleasantest is the Joy Line, by which passengers are carried across the Sea of Dreams in Transports of Rapture.
[Illustration: “ACROSS THE SEA OF DREAMS IN TRANSPORTS OF RAPTURE”]
Another approach, preferred by adventurous ones in search of excitement, is across the Seas of Misunderstanding, through the troubled waters of the Gulf of Wo, and over the difficult and well-nigh impassable Mountains of Opposition. However, when these mountains are safely crossed the way is delightful and easy.
[Illustration: “THE TROUBLED WATERS OF THE GULF OF WO”]
ROADS OUT OF ARCADY: The Road to Fame often leads out of Arcady. An ambitious youth, hearing a silvery trumpet note, looks up to see a radiant Goddess beckoning to him. Unless a true Lover, he may be dazzled by her glory and cajoled by her promises. Lured away, he follows the fickle Fair and soon loses all interest in Arcadian delights.
The Road to Wealth is another easy way out of Arcady. Not content with the Pot of Gold at the End of the Rainbow, many with a greed for lucre will follow the Goddess Fortune, who is even more false and fickle than the Goddess Fame.
[Illustration: “A RADIANT GODDESS BECKONING TO HIM”]
Also there is the Downward Path, which leads from the State of Matrimony to the Great Divide. Crossing this, the unfortunate traveler returns to the State of Single Blessedness.
[Illustration: “MANY WITH A GREED FOR LUCRE WILL FOLLOW THE GODDESS FORTUNE”]
SEASON: Arcady is an all-the-year-round resort, and most of the districts described may be visited at any season of the year. Spring and Early Summer are perhaps best for an initial visit.
June is an especially desirable time for young lovers to be in Arcady, but Lovelorn Swains and Minor Poets frequently choose the melancholy days of Autumn.
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CLIMATE: The Climatic conditions of Arcady are peculiar. Though usually the weather is balmy and pleasant, sometimes a sudden coolness springs up and a frost is often distinctly felt. A stormy time may ensue, and then suddenly the clouds clear away and all is sunshine once more.
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TIME: Time in Arcady is entirely a matter of opinion. To a waiting Lover the minutes are hours and lag slowly along, while to happy hearts a golden day flies by as if on wings.
It is said that Love makes Time pass away, and Time makes Love pass away; but the latter statement is obviously an error, for after Love has made Time pass away, how can Time do anything to Love?
However, ’tis Love that makes the world go round, and this explains why Love makes Time pass so rapidly.
[Illustration: “’TIS LOVE THAT MAKES THE WORLD GO ROUND”]
[Illustration: THE OLD CLOCK ON THE STAIRS]
“FOREVER ——— NEVER NEVER ———FOREVER”
Watches are of little use in Arcady, as the Lovers deem them always too slow or too fast, and usually forget to wind them, anyway. The town timepiece is the Old Clock on the Stairs, whose refrain is:
Forever and Never are the units of time most employed by Arcadians, and their meanings are synonymous.
Time when Lovers are separated is measured by ages; when together, it is not measured at all, as then the hours unheeded fly, or speed on winged feet.
Sun dials and Moon dials are approved, as they mark the bright hours only.
’Twas St. Valentine’s Day, and Father Time Said, “I think I’ll scribble a bit o’ rhyme, To send to the sweetest maid on earth.” And the old fellow chuckled in roguish mirth. He reached for his inkhorn and quill, then said, As he absently nodded his wise old head, “But what maiden is gentle and sweet and fine Enough to be my Valentine? There’s a musical girl in Kalamazoo,— But I hear she beats Time, so she won’t do; There’s a fair New York girl, proud and calm, But they say she kills Time without a qualm! A pretty clubwoman I saw one day, But ‘I won’t have Time,’ I heard her say. For one of those summer girls I yearn; But they declare they ‘have Time to burn.’ There are lovely girls in a Southern clime, But they sweetly admit that they waste Time, While the bustling woman, with manners curt, Takes Time by the forelock, and that does hurt. On the Boston maiden I make no claim, To improve Time seems to be her aim. And I heard an old spinster contriving a plan Say, ‘I’ll try to get Time as soon as I can.’ So none of these whom I’ve mentioned yet A Valentine from Time shall get. But I’ve in mind a maiden who, When a fond lover came to woo, Just blushed and hung down her pretty head, And ‘Give me Time!’ was all she said. By Cupid, that’s the maid for me! To her my Valentine shall be.”
[Illustration: “SUN DIALS AND MOON DIALS ARE APPROVED, AS THEY MARK THE BRIGHT HOURS ONLY”]
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CALENDAR: The Arcadian Calendar is entirely made up of Red-Letter Days.
In the Spring the Young Man’s Fancy follows the vernal tradition.
The Summer is entirely given over to the Summer Girl’s flirtations.
In the Autumn a delicious Melancholy is in the air and Arcadians experience
A feeling of sadness and longing That is not akin to wo; And resembles sorrow only As a Poet resembles a Poe.
In Winter come the Halcyon Days, and all are glad and merry and Life is one grand, sweet song and dance.
Many Fête Days are observed.
Christmas receives due consideration, but St. Valentine’s Day and All Hallowe’en are even more widely celebrated in Arcady.
April First, or All Fools’ Day, is not specially observed, except in Fool’s Paradise, where it is April Fools’ Day all the year round.
Midsummer Eve and the Eve of St. Agnes are dear to Lovers, and as every day is Somebody’s Birthday, there are celebrations continually. Mayday, too, is a pleasant occasion, and on that day there are May-parties all over the place, for Arcady is a Land where it is always Saturday Afternoon.
THE LAY OF LOTHARIO LEE
Lothario Lee was saddened, the world seemed grim and gray; For Lothario Lee was a lover bold, and today was St. Valentine’s Day.
’Twas St. Valentine’s Day, and he fain would send his heart to the fair Florelle, For the radiant maid had inspired in his breast a passion he could not quell.
But alas! for the gay Lothario, his heart was held in fee Down at Dan Cupid’s pawnshop, at the sign of the roses three.
Willingly would the lovelorn knight that errant heart reclaim, But alas! the luckless Lothario hadn’t a cent to his name.
So he sadly sat and pondered, as doleful as he could be; When a brilliant notion struck him—“Done!” cried Lothario Lee.
“I’ll send her the pawnshop ticket, my tale of wo ’twill tell, For she alone can redeem my heart—the rich and rare Florelle.”
He sent her the tell-tale ticket, he scribbled a hasty line, Bidding her call at Dan Cupid’s shop and claim her valentine.
And as she read the message, in the soul of the fair Florelle A joyful thought rang merrily, like a far-away marriage bell.
With her heart in a frantic flutter, adown the street sped she, Till she reached Dan Cupid’s pawnshop, at the sign of the roses three.
Cupid sat at a work-bench, mending a broken dart; “I am Florelle,” said she, “and I come to claim Lothario’s heart.
“Here is the ticket, Cupid; what are the ransom fees? See, I will pay you the money; give me the heart, if you please.”
“But I am blind,” said Cupid, “I cannot see the name; Describe the heart you are looking for, and so make good your claim.”
“Lothario’s heart,” said the lady, “is brave and knows no fear.” “Alas!” said Cupid, dejectedly, “no such heart is here.”
“His heart,” said the lady, further, “is honest, and good, and true.” “No,” said Dan Cupid, wofully, “not one of these hearts will do.”
“His heart to me is single, it beats for me alone.” “Come, come,” cried Cupid, “impossible! Such hearts I’ve never known.
“The best in my collection has been mended once or twice, But here’s a heart that may suit you, if you’re willing to pay the price.
“It’s a heart that is sad and lonely, a trifle hard and cold, It seems to be rather scarred and worn—in fact, it’s getting old.
“It’s somewhat fickle and jealous, a bit impatient, too; And it’s branded with several maidens’ names—Coralie, Rose, and Loo.”
“Why, that’s the very heart I want,” said the lady, “give it to me; That’s the one I’ve been describing to you, the heart of Lothario Lee.”
As she left the shop in triumph, said Cupid, “I seem to find Each day a more convincing fact to prove that Love is blind.”
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MONEY: Money is of little use in Arcady. Those who are rich spend their money lavishly, but the poor get along just as well, and often better.
The principal coins of the Realm are the Lucky Penny and the Last Red Cent.
Credit can always be had at the Arcadian Shops, and is extended as often as desired.
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CUSTOM HOUSE: Hearts, especially if inflammable, are dutiable articles, and should be declared as such.
Worn on the sleeve, they are easily examined by the Inspector, though a dishonest smuggler has sometimes gone ashore with his heart in his boots.
Hearts are appraised by weight, so heavy hearts should be avoided and light hearts should be carried whenever possible.
Broken hearts are not dutiable, unless they have been repaired and are quite as good as new.
[Illustration: CUSTOM HOUSE “PASSIONS SHOULD ALWAYS BE DECLARED”]
Stolen hearts may be confiscated by the Customs Inspectors and returned to their original owners. Stony hearts are exempt.
Passions should always be declared.
Keepsakes and souvenirs are not dutiable and need not be shown.
Cupid, one day, in idle quest, Fitted a dainty dart And aimed it at Priscilla’s breast, To strike Priscilla’s heart.
Clean through it went, no heart was there; Said Cupid, “I believe Priscilla’s just the girl to wear Her heart upon her sleeve.”
But there, alack! it was not found; “Aha!” cried Cupid, “note Her frightened air; now I’ll be bound Her heart is in her throat.”
Failure again. On slender chance He one more arrow shoots; Assuming from her downcast glance, Her heart is in her boots.
Foiled, Cupid threw aside his bow; “She has no heart,” said he. (He did not know that long ago She gave her heart to me.)
The early history of Arcady is lost in the mists of ancient tradition. Looking backward through the reversed Opera Glass of Time, we see that it was originally settled by Adam and Eve. Since then it has been peopled by lovers of every age, sex, and condition of servitude.
These people are usually gentle and mild-mannered, though occasionally given to angry or quarrelsome outbreaks caused by jealousy or misunderstanding. These outbreaks, however, are indulged in mostly for the pleasure of kissing and making up afterward, and forgiveness is one of their chief characteristics.
The Arcadians are not gregarious, but go about in couples, or sit solitary and alone, wrapt in rapt thought.
The male population is divided into Lovers, Poets, and Lunatics. There are various types of Lovers—those that sigh like a furnace, those that are pale and wan, and Swains.
Swains are usually Rustic or Lovelorn.
Feminine Arcadians are called Queens, Goddesses, Angels, and other titles of incredible foolishness.
In physical appearance dwellers in Arcady are beautiful beyond all words. The women have eyes as stars of twilight fair, faces with gardens in, lily hands, amber-dropping hair, and feet like little mice.
The men are handsome as Apollos; of heroic size and Chesterfieldian manners.
The above-mentioned qualities, though not always apparent to the disinterested observer, are realized and insisted upon by the Lovers themselves.
Oftenest the Citizens of Arcady are transients and come and go as circumstances decree, but in some rare instances a happy pair spend their whole life in Arcady, or wander through the Happy Valley and make their home in the Land of Heart’s Desire.
AN ARCADY GIRL
His gold beams a-spinning, I asked of the sun If he ever had any to spare; “Only once,” he replied, “too many I spun, And I gave them to Peggy for hair.”
I asked of the sky if his stars were all right, Or if he had over-supplies; He said, “I had two which were rather too bright, So I gave them to Peggy for eyes.”
I asked of some fays who were cutting out flowers If they had any remnants or snips; They said: “We had scraps of these poppies of ours, But we gave them to Peggy for lips.”
I said to the rain, “What becomes of the drops That you may not have used when it clears?” He said, “If there are any left when it stops, I’ll give them to Peggy for tears.”
I artfully coaxed him to spill them all out, And scatter them over the miles, And that is the reason, I haven’t a doubt, That Peg’s always dimpling with smiles.
UNDER A NEW CHARTER
Hello! Come in! I called you, Cupid, To take this box. Handle with care! Look out! don’t be so careless, Stupid; I’d have you know my heart’s in there.
Take it at once, boy, to Miss Kitty, And say it is a valentine. How happy she’ll look, and how pretty, When she discovers it is mine!
Tell her for her my heart is yearning, And then, unless my judgment errs, By the same messenger returning I rather think she’ll send me hers.
What, Cupid, are you back already? And bringing me Miss Kitty’s heart? Open it quickly! Stay, be steady! What’s this? A neatly printed chart!
“No spaces left at my disposal— Possibly some vacated soon; But I have filed your kind proposal. Come up and call some afternoon.”
And here her heart is designated— What seas of dreams! what flowery isles! The boundaries all distinctly stated, And measured by a scale of smiles.
A large tract’s given to her poodle; A smaller one contains her cat; Here is the claim of Lord Fitznoodle; Here her expensive picture-hat.
Here I observe her mother’s quarters; This large compartment is her dad’s; Here Revolutionary Daughters, And here her clubs and freaks and fads.
Here is enshrined her baby cousin, And here that Count with whom she flirts; Here are male tenants by the dozen (They’re only friends, so she asserts).
This corner’s occupied by Irving, This by her pearl and turquoise pin; Although I know I am deserving, I don’t see how I can get in.
The province of Arcadia proper, the country between the Sea of Dreams and the Land of Heart’s Desire (see map No. 2), is a large district with well-defined boundaries.
The natural scenery is delightful, being chiefly made up of flowery meads and sylvan dells threaded by murmuring or babbling brooks.
The River Lethe flows through the country, at one point dashing over a precipice in a great Cataract. This is known as Lover’s Leap and is, at times, the scene of fearful tragedies.
Despairing Swains threaten to end their lives by dashing into the seething waters, unless their capricious sweethearts will smile on them.
As the sweethearts usually smile, death rarely, if ever, ensues.
Near the middle of the Country of Arcadia is its capital, the town of Arcady, which is described elsewhere.
Toward the Northwest lies Lotus Land, the land where it is always afternoon, where the charmed sunset lingers low adown in the red West.
[Illustration: LAND OF HEARTS DESIRE—ARCADY and its Environs]
The inhabitants are the mild-eyed, melancholy Lotus-Eaters, whose cult is Indolence set to Music.
The mossy banks of Lotus Land slope down to the River Lethe, and propt on beds of amaranth and moly the Lotus-Eaters delight to watch the long bright river drawing slowly and hear the dewy echoes calling and watch the emerald color’d water falling, and things like that.
Across the river from Lotus Land lies the Garden of the Hesperides. These enterprising maidens do a brisk trade in Golden Apples, but this district must not be confounded with the Garden of Eden, as they are not the same.
Going southward, following the shores of the Gulf of Time, we come to the Land of Yesterday—and further South to Never Never Land. These are beautiful and attractive spots much sought by Lovers of retrospective and imaginative tendencies.
On the West side of the river, just South of Lotus Land, lies Wanderland, and nearby are the Elysian Fields. These districts are usually thronged with Lovers sauntering about in pairs, each couple being entirely oblivious of all the others.
Further South we come to Dangerous Ground, which slopes down to Lover’s Leap. Near here is Fool’s Paradise. This is a popular spot and often most delicious adventures may be met here. The dwellers in Fool’s Paradise are absurdly happy, and sometimes climb a small eminence in the center of the place, known as the Height of Folly.
To the West is a range of Blue Mountains. The despairing swain often climbs these, but when he reaches Mount Hope the world looks brighter and he soon gets back to the Happy Valley.
AN ARCADIAN LADY
MY LADY OF DELIGHT
With roguish glances bright, All on a summer’s day, My Lady of Delight She stole my heart away. And though I humbly beg And plead with her, alack! My Lady of Delight She will not give it back.
Oh, Lady of Delight, The penalty is this— If you would keep the heart you stole Then pay me with a kiss.
My Lady of Delight, She is a winsome thing; She’s Queen of Summertime And Princess of the Spring. The glory of her smile, The sunshine in her eyes, Is like the dawn of breaking day Across the morning skies.
To linger by her side Is such delicious bliss, Methinks I’ll steal her heart from her, And pay her with a kiss.
Arcady, the capital and chief city of the province of Arcadia, is a thickly settled town, with delightful outlying districts and suburban surroundings.
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PRELIMINARY RAMBLE: The stranger visiting Arcady for the first time cannot do better than to begin by a walk down Lovers’ Lane, where he must surely be impressed by the shady trees and luxuriantly blooming flowers. Although sometimes flooded with morning sunshine, it is usually evening in Arcady. The moon shines always, sometimes a Honeymoon glows brightly, and there are generally stars, or perhaps a tender twilight with a fading sunset. On each side of the lane are the small houses of the Love-in-a-Cottage Colony. These cottages are rose-embowered and have white dimity curtains tied with blue ribbons. Crossing Lovers’ Lane at right angles is Primrose Path, the fashionable street of Arcady. The dwellings here are air castles (mostly of Spanish architecture) and dreams of marble halls. One of the most celebrated mansions is Claude Melnotte’s:
A palace lifting to eternal summer Its marble walls, from out a glossy bower Of coolest foliage musical with birds, . . . while the perfumed light Stole through the mists of alabaster lamps, And every air was heavy with the sighs Of orange groves and music from sweet lutes, And murmurs of low fountains that gush forth I’ the midst of roses!
Farther on a shaft of moonlight falls on Juliet’s balcony, and beyond rise the towers and turrets of the Castle of La Joyeuse Garde. Primrose Path leads to Fool’s Paradise, but turning off to the West the traveler may stroll through Paradise Alley to the Elysian Fields. This beautiful spot is always fanned by south winds, and among its flowery arbors may be heard the songs of larks, nightingales, and turtle doves. Beyond lies the Forest of Arden. Here sturdy oaks covered with clinging vines abound; but the tree most frequently seen is the Trysting Tree. These trees are interesting to visitors because of the symbols carved on their bark. Here one may notice the entwined initials of Aucassin and Nicolette; there the true lover’s knot of Orpheus and Eurydice, or the overlapping hearts of Abelard and Heloise. Crossing a stile we wander by the brookside, or pause for a while at the old Ruined Mill to count the Shooting Stars.
The flowers in Arcady are perennial and bloom all the year round. There are roses for every stage of the game, from the blush rose to the Bride Rose. There are moss roses for those who love old-fashioned flowers, and the Last Rose of Summer is a variety much admired by Romanticists. There are many old-fashioned gardens in Arcady, and here may be seen Bleeding Hearts, Forget-me-nots, Love-Lies-Bleeding, Pansies for Thoughts, and Rosemary for Remembrance. There is also Heartsease and Rue. There are lanes of lilacs and orchards of apple bloom. There are daisy fields and groves of orange trees in blossom. Wild flowers grow everywhere and mistletoe is indigenous. In the flower-shops may be bought orchids or violets in wealthy effects. In the Souvenir Shops one may find pressed or dried flowers, and these are much in demand. Poppies grow wild along the banks of the Lethe River, and the moon-flower flourishes in many gardens.
THE ARCADIAN LANGUAGE OF FLOWERS
ASTERS—I am very wealthy. STOCK—I have been successful in Wall Street. PHLOX—I shear lambs. RUBBER PLANT—I love to look at you. DAISY—You’re it. BURR—I’m stuck on you. OYSTER PLANT—Will you dine with me? MINT—Do you live in Philadelphia? ANISE—Cordially yours. COSMOS—You’re all the world to me. MARIGOLD—I mean business. POPPY—May I speak to your father? ORCHIDS—I am extravagant. PALM—Will you accept my hand? TUBEROSES—May you die soon. BLUEBELL—I will telephone you. MOCK ORANGE BLOSSOMS—I am only flirting with you. MOON FLOWERS—I’m just crazy about you. BOX—Will you go to the opera with me?
The hotels in Arcady are excellent, with large and well-kept gardens, rose-embowered lawns, ivy-hung turrets, and all requirements of Romance.
In the interior of the town is Halcyon Hall, owned by the Lovemore Company. This is a new and sumptuous hotel, fitted up with a careful attention to detail, which combines eighteenth-century romance with nineteenth-century convenience. Among its advantages over the older hostelries are:
An Express Elevator to the Seventh Heaven, and a Dream Interpreter Call and United States Valentine Chute on every floor. It is also lighted by an Automatic Electric Moon.
Other important hotels are Orchid Court, Honeymoon Hall, and Violet Villa.
The Grand Union is an old and well-known hotel for married lovers. Less pretentious hostelries are the bijou Villa Beaubelle, Starlight Cottage, and Cupid’s Court.
There are many Inns, both quaint and interesting. Their swinging sign-boards announce such appropriate appellations as “Arms and the Man,” “The Moon and I,” or “The World is Mine.”
The St. Valentine Apartment House, situated on Good Times Square, is a residential building of the first class.
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RESTAURANTS: These institutions are not specially popular in Arcady, as the inhabitants rarely have large appetites. Indeed, waiters often set artificial viands before their patrons, and the difference is not observed.
Guests are always overcharged, as the true Lover has no thought of what he is paying and settles any bill without a murmur.
A very popular table d’hôte service consists of Bread and Cheese and Kisses, and the partakers thereof drink to each other only with their eyes and leave a kiss in the cup, so that wine is never asked for.
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SWEET SHOPS: These shops are well patronized and their wares include nectar, honey, angel-cakes, taffy, kisses, and sweets of all sorts. Orders are filled also for wedding-cakes, and very soft drinks are served in loving-cups.
HEARD IN ARCADY
MUSIC IN THE GRASS
In the summer of the summer, when the hazy air is sweet With the breath of crimson clover, and the day’s a-shine with heat, When the sky is blue and burning and the clouds a downy mass, When the breeze is idly dawdling, there is music in the grass— Just a thistly, whistly sound In the tangles near the ground; And the flitting fairies often stop to listen as they pass. Just a lisping, whisp’ring tune, Like a bumblebee’s bassoon, In a far-away fantasia, is the music in the grass.
Would you know what makes the music? On each slender, quivering blade There are notes and chords and phrases by the bees and crickets played; And the grasshoppers and locusts strive each other to surpass In their brave interpretation of the music in the grass. By the roguish breezes tossed You might think it would get lost, But the careful fairies guard it, watching closely as they pass. So on every summer day, Sounding faint and far away, Is the mystic, murmuring marvel of the music in the grass.
DITHYRAMB BY AN ARCADIAN POET
TO A MILKMAID IN ARCADY
I hail thee, O Milkmaid! Goddess of the gaudy morn, Hail! Across the mead tripping, Invariably across the mead tripping, The merry mead with cowslips blooming, With daisies blooming, The Milkmaid also more or less blooming! I hail thee, O Milkmaid! I recognize the value of thy pail in literature and art. What were a pastoral poet without thee? Oh, I know thee, Milkmaid! I hail thy jaunty juvenescence. I know thy eighteen summers and thy eternal springs. Ay, I know thy trials! I know how thou art outspread over pastoral poetry. Rampant, ubiquitous, inevitable, thy riotings in pastoral poetry. And in masterpieces of pastoral art! How oft have I seen thee sitting; On a tri-legged stool sitting; On the wrong side of the cow sitting; Garbed in all thy preposterous paraphernalia. I know thy paraphernalia— Yea, even thy impossible milkpail and thy improbable bodice. Short-skirted Siren! Big-hatted Beauty! What were the gentle spring without thee? I hail thee! I hail thy vernality, and I rejoice in thy hackneyed ubiquitousness. I hail the superiority of thy inferiorness, and I lay at thy feet this garland of gratuitous Hails!
[Illustration: “ON THE WATER ALL SORTS OF BOATS ARE USED”]
Arcady is oftenest traversed on foot, as Lovers would rather stroll together through the beautiful country than to ride, and many of them walk on air. But, if desired, any vehicle for two may be obtained at the Livery Stables. Old-fashioned sidebar buggies and hansom cabs are much in demand, and some swains still enjoy a bicycle built for two.
On the water all sorts of boats are used. On moonlight nights and balmy afternoons, and also in the radiant glow of the early morning, the lakes and streams are dotted with Shallops, Cockle-Shells, or Gondolas, in which loving pairs are idly drifting.
Also, at the Livery Stables, palfreys may be engaged for eloping purposes, or chargers may be hired by the Lover of medieval tastes, and rope ladders are sold or rented for these occasions.
[Illustration: CUPID’S HEARTWARE SHOP]
The Arcadian shops offer delightful wares to a doting Lover. Flower-markets and candy-shops show tempting display windows, and book-stalls can supply presentation editions of all the love-lore ever written from Sappho to the present day. The jewel-shops are marvels of splendor, and the Arcady arcades and bazaars show love-tokens and souvenirs of all sorts. An interesting place to visit is Dan Cupid’s Heartware shop, where charms, love-philters, and true-love knots are for sale. There is also a repairing department, where broken hearts are mended and made as good as new. Here hearts may be repaired while you wait.
Amid their annual display Of roses, doves, and darts, Cupid and Co. announce today A Bargain Sale of Hearts.
Ho, luckless suitor lachrymose, Ho, lacklove lovelorn swain, Gallants rejected and morose, Hearts you may here obtain.
Rare specimens that must be sold, One that is pure and true; One, an antique, exceeding old, But quite as good as new.
And as we know there’ll be a crowd Before the day is done, No single buyer is allowed To purchase more than one.
A man might find ’mong broken hearts A fitting mate for his; Dan Cupid mends with skilful arts And sells them cheap “as is.”
Then as you take your walks abroad, Ho, all ye lovers, stop! And view these bargains which we laud At Cupid’s Heartware Shop.
The gloveshop is a popular emporium, for gloves are so often given or confiscated, for souvenirs, that they must be continually replaced.
Mittens, also used as gifts, are for sale here.
In the bookshops the best selling titles are “How to Make Love and How to Keep It,” “Sonnets from the Portuguese,” “The Lover’s Lexicon.”
One summer day, poor little Cupid Sat sadly poring o’er his slate. “I fear I must be very stupid,” He said, and shook his curly pate.
And then he ran away to Venus. “Dear mother, help me! if you will, I’m sure,” he cried, “that we between us Can straighten out Sir Strephon’s bill.”
Said Venus, “Just as I expected! You always do make such a fuss With bills!” But soon it was corrected, And the account was rendered thus:
Sir Strephon— To Dan Cupid, Dr., To shooting at six maidens’ hearts. To making one blue silken fetter. To half a dozen blunted darts.
To seven arrows, lost or broken. To one heart by a blunder hit. To one new bow. To one love-token. Terms cash. No credit. Please remit.
“Hasten,” cried Venus, “do not tarry! Today is Strephon’s wedding-day. Unless he settle e’er he marry, Cupid may whistle for his pay.”
[Illustration: “THE GROVES AND DELLS ARE DECORATED WITH BEAUTIFUL STATUES”]
INSTITUTIONS AND PUBLIC BUILDINGS
PLACES OF INTEREST: A walk or drive round Arcady will reveal many points of interest to the traveler. The groves and dells are decorated with beautiful statues, among which may be noticed Venus, Eros, Psyche, Adonis, Lothario, Dulcinea, Byron, Mrs. Browning, and lovers of all times and ages.
Around the corner there is a little church with a chime of wedding bells.
* * * * *
POST-OFFICE: The post-office is in the heart of an old hollow oak tree at the corner of Lovers’ Lane and Great Joy Street. It is always much used, but on St. Valentine’s Day the accommodations are quite inadequate.
HEART EXCHANGE: The Heart Exchange is a time-honored institution, and a circulating library of hearts is patronized by summer girls and college youths. The Poet’s Corner (corner of Grub Street and Maiden Lane) is always a crowded spot, and the Photograph Galleries are well patronized.
THE INTERCEPTED VALENTINE
Little Bo-peep, will you be mine? I want you for my Valentine. You are my choice of all the girls, With your blushing cheeks and your fluttering curls, With your ribbons gay and your kirtle neat, None other is so fair and sweet. Little Bo-peep, let’s run away, And marry each other on Midsummer Day; And ever to you I’ll be fond and true. Your faithful Valentine, Little Boy Blue.
* * * * *
BANKS: There are many banks. One of the best known is the bank on which the wild thyme grows, and another almost equally noted is the bank on which the moonlight slept so sweetly in Jessica’s time.
There is a Rainy-Day Bank, much patronized by thrifty young Lovers.
Every day is Bank Holiday in Arcady.
* * * * *
THE HOSPITAL: The hospital is a fine up-to-date building, for the benefit of lovesick swains. It is situated on the corner of Heartbreak Avenue and Despair Street, and is in charge of skilled medical men and well-trained nurses.
Special wards are provided for the moonstruck, and padded cells for Swains suffering from Love’s delirium, or those frantic Lovers who have been bitten by the Green-Eyed Monster.
Emergency Specialists provide first aid to the smitten, and Anatomical Experts attend those who have had their heads turned, or who have fallen over head and ears in love; while clever Oculists look after those whom Love has made blind, or whose eyes are in a fine frenzy rolling.
* * * * *
THE WEATHER BUREAU: The weather bureau in Arcady is a most unreliable affair.
If a frown cloud his lady’s face, the sign to the Lover is: “Fair and Slightly Cooler.”
If he fail in any attention she expected, the sign may be read: “About this time expect a frost.”
[Illustration: WEATHER BUREAU “FAIR AND SLIGHTLY COOLER”]
* * * * *
THE CAMPO SANTO: The Campo Santo is a most romantic and enjoyable spot. From earliest times it has been the habit of Lovers to wander through a graveyard—and the cemetery in Arcady so abounds in romantic memories that it is an Elysium in itself. The graves are kept green of such historic lovers as Paris and Helen, Paolo and Francesca, Hero and Leander; while the monument of Romeo and Juliet is a veritable shrine and is always decked with fresh flowers.
* * * * *
THE HALL OF FAME: Arcady never tires of honoring the memory of her eminent citizens.
Aside from the tombstones in the Campo Santo and the statues in the Public Gardens, there are Monuments in the Hall of Fame that again perpetuate the memory of departed Heroes and Heroines of Romance.
A tablet in bas-relief shows the despairing Huguenot Lovers, while next it stands a sculptured group of “Darby and Joan.”
The lovely Pastoral Work, “Corydon and Phyllis,” is opposite the equally charming piece, “Strephon and Chloe.”
Fair Margaret and Sweet William sleep in effigy, and noted Lovers of all climes and ages are represented.
BALLADE OF ARCADY
Oh, Life sings in a joyous strain When Cupid holds our hearts in fee; The days such happiness contain, The nights bring merry revelry. Our souls are tuned to highest key, Our hearts from joy know not surcease;— Yet this one truth comes home to me, The dearest gift of Love is Peace.
When many roguish smiles enchain, When many voices chime in glee, An interest in them all I feign, And each the fairest seems to be. But one I seek all earnestly, As Jason sought the Golden Fleece, Whose heart would fain agree with me, The dearest gift of Love is Peace.
My fond quest has not been in vain, Shyly she listened to my plea; And Cupid, peeping at us twain, Smiled as I knelt on bended knee. From gay enchantments now I’m free, I feel their trifling charms decrease, From all their blandishments I flee, The dearest gift of Love is Peace.
Sweetheart, we’ve done with coquetry, With coy flirtation and caprice; All these are past,—and now we see The dearest gift of Love is Peace.
The Mayday Plaisance is a large Amusement Park situated on Good Times Square.
This is frequented by light-hearted and frivolous-minded young Arcadians, who enjoy the amusements provided.
* * * * *
There is a Captive Aeroplane in the Seventh Heaven, which makes flights every half-hour. The stay in the Seventh Heaven is necessarily short, but enthusiastic Lovers go often.
* * * * *
The Descent Into the Inferno is another diversion, patronized by intense or quick-tempered pairs.
[Illustration: “THE MAYDAY PLAISANCE IS A LARGE AMUSEMENT PARK”]
The Well of Truth is an interesting feature.
Looking down into its crystal-clear depths, Lovers learn the truth about each other. This often causes much merriment, or the reverse. (On the whole it is a dangerous pastime.)
* * * * *
Joy Rides are usually clandestine and secret. They often end disastrously, but this is part of the fun. Any vehicle may be used and any speed maintained. Oftenest it is a slow, merely moving crawl, but again it may be a break-neck dash. Joy Rides have been popular in Arcady for many centuries. Some have been immortalized in Song and Story. Robert Browning’s “Last Ride Together” is a stirring tale of a Joy Ride. See also “The Ride of Lochinvar” and “The Young Lady of Niger.”
* * * * *
Bands of Serenaders are often heard in the Mayday Plaisance. These are of troubadour effect and sing sad or tender love songs to the accompaniment of such instruments as lutes, guitars, bassoons, etc. The audience (in pairs) are ensconced in vine-hung balconies and thus enjoy the appropriate music.
Dreamland is a part of the Mayday Plaisance, and here young lovers may indulge in fairest Day-dreams.
Dream Interpreters are here, who are skilled in interpreting Love’s Young Dream.
One may choose to have a Midsummer-Night’s Dream, or he may dream that he dwelt in Marble Halls, and, if waking is a pain, he may dream again. Or, if Love’s Dream is o’er, he may ask to have a change come o’er the spirit of his Dream.
* * * * *
Another diversion is the Illusion known as the Bridal Veil. This fools many.
[Illustration: A SERENADER]
THE OLD STORY
Tonight I met Rose, So it’s all up with Polly. She bewitches the beaux, And tonight I met Rose; Now who would suppose _I’d_ be caught by such folly? But tonight I met Rose, So it’s all up with Polly.
For those who wish to derive the greatest possible pleasure from a visit to Arcady, some acquaintance with the Language of Love is indispensable. This can best be acquired by a careful study of poetry and romantic novels, and about four hours’ practise every day. (“The Lover’s Phrase Book” is a useful little treatise, as it gives four thousand terms of endearment, alphabetically arranged, and is small enough to be carried in the pocket, for ready reference, in case of love at first sight.)
The Language of Love is largely composed of adjectives and expletives.
Hyperbole and other flowery figures of speech abound.
It is also peculiarly rich in idioms, most of which are generally unintelligible, being made up by those who use them.
* * * * *
The beginner usually thus learns the first principles of conjugation.
First Person, I love. This is a joy and a revelation and he is the happiest man on earth.
Second Person, Thou lovest. This completes his rapture and he is in Heaven.
Third Person, He loves. This is known as the Tertium Quid and casts the beginner into the depths of Hades.
SOME ARCADIAN BROMIDIOMS
“When did you first begin to love me?”
“Do you love me as much as ever?”
“You don’t love me any more.”
“I never loved any girl but you.”
“Oh, I thought I loved him, but now I know it wasn’t really love.”
“They think they’re happy, but they don’t know what love means,—as we do.”
“Do you really think I’m pretty?”
“I don’t see why you love me.”
“Nobody in all the world ever loved as we do.”
“How did you come to love me in the first place?”
“Would you forgive me anything?”
EXERCISE FOR THE LANGUAGE STUDENT
A VERY PRETTY QUARREL
HE—Tell me you love me, pretty poppet SHE—I love you more than you love me! HE—Oh, no! Excuse me, my own moppet; But truly, sweet, that cannot be!
SHE—What cannot be? HE— That you _could_ love me More or as much as I love you. SHE—Ah, so you set yourself above me?
HE—No, no! not that! SHE— Oh, yes, you do!
HE—Now do be reasonable, dearie. SHE— I will be, sir, if you’ll allow I love you best. HE— You make me weary! SHE—Well, just admit it, anyhow.
HE—I won’t! SHE— If you _did_ love me best, dear, You’d say whatever I might ask, _Because_ I ask it. HE— Chuck the rest, dear; You’ve set me now an easy task.
SHE—I love you best! Is not that so, love? HE— It is; and thus we meet the test I say what you command, you know, love, Only because _I_ love _you_ best!
SHE—You horrid thing! HE— Why, what now, Janet? I said just what you asked me to! SHE—You’re mean and cruel! HE— You began it! SHE— I didn’t! You did! HE— No; ’twas you!
HE—Come, dearie, stop this silly snarling; You _do_ love most, I spoke in jest; SHE—No, no, _your_ love is greatest, darling; HE— No, my sweetheart, _you_ love _me_ best!
(_Repeat ad lib. D. C. al fine_)
DEGREES OF LOVE
Positive: My Own! Comparative: My Owner! Superlative: My Ownest!
Forever: until tomorrow. Never: until tomorrow. Yes: no. No: yes. Keepsake: any worthless piece of property. Absence: a heart stimulant. Alone: (for one) misery. Alone: (for two) joy. X X X: kisses. o o o: kisses.
THE SPELLING LESSON
When Venus said: “Spell _no_ for me,” “N-O,” Dan Cupid wrote with glee, And smiled at his success;
“Ah, child,” said Venus, laughing low, “We women do not spell it so, We spell it Y-E-S.”
LOVE IN ARCADY
What to us is time or space, Hours of absence, days of grace; As we rule and reign alone In a kingdom of our own? Love like ours is up to date, Sneers at fortune, conquers Fate; Makes the loves of early times Look like three bright, shiny dimes. Couldn’t we give cards and spades To historic lovers’ shades! Easily our love can beat That of Faust and Marguerite. Heloise and Abelard Stooped to tricks that we’d discard; Orpheus and Eurydice Only knew a simple way; Launcelot and Guinevere Wondering would our love-songs hear, And a few things we might show Juliet and Romeo. Hero we’d give pointers to, Teach Leander how to woo. I could coach Semiramis, Trojan Helen teach to kiss. You’d teach Dante and Petrarch, Distance Cleopatra’s Mark. Oh, the loves of bygone days Were not up to modern ways!
They tell me that the day is fair, With blossoms springing everywhere; I do not know, I cannot say, For thou, my love, art far away.
They tell me that the birds sing sweet, That brooklets ripple at my feet; I do not know, I cannot hear, For thou, my love, art nowhere near.
They tell me that the sky is blue, The hills take on a purple hue; I do not know, I cannot see, For thou, my love, art not with me.
BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH OF CUPID
Ever so many years ago, When Cupid was quite young, you know, There were no schools at all, and so, Athirst for information, Each day the funny little chap Would climb up in Dame Venus’ lap, And study from a book or map To get his education.
He traced in his Geography The Primrose Path to Arcady; He bounded Agapemone, And Flowery Fields Elysian. Then, his Arithmetic begun, He learned that one and one make one, That one from two leaves simply none, And Love abhors division.
From Botany he learned to know The value of the mistletoe, And why a rose is cherished so, Even when it is faded. Rhetoric taught him how to say Fair speeches in a pretty way; And if a lass should murmur “Nay,” How she must be persuaded.
On History’s thrilling page he met With Romeo and Juliet, Brave Aucassin and Nicolette, And other hearts devoted. Then in Astronomy he found What ’tis that makes the world go round, And why the moon is so renowned, And shooting stars are noted.
In Grammar Cupid had to say “I love, thou lov’st, he loves,” each day, And learn of hearts declined, that they Can still be conjugated. He studied the Industrial Arts, Became adept at mending hearts, Right skilfully he fashioned darts, And wondrous love-knots plaited.
A Magic course he had to take, And for sad hearts that ache or break Love-philters strange he learned to make From musk and myrrh and myrtle. He studied deeply souls that yearned, Investigated hearts that burned, And all the tricks and habits learned Of doves, both ring and turtle.
And so Dan Cupid is no fool, But he’s well versed in love and rule, Although he never went to school And never went to college. He’s blind, and yet the rogue can see A thousand times as well as we; And that’s how Cupid comes to be A Paragon of Knowledge.
Arcady is an Absolute Monarchy. It is under Home Rule, and Home is where the Heart is.
Each citizen is a King or Queen, and rules one subject.
Any Monarch may be deposed suddenly and supplanted by another. Beside being a Monarch each citizen is a slave, and thus the balance of power is preserved.
The Declaration of Dependence is signed by all good Arcadians.
Be sure you’re right then lose your head. A fool and his money are soon married. A little debutante is a dangerous thing. Proposals make cowards of us all. There’s no fool like a bold fool. The longest way round is the sweetest way home. One good kiss deserves another. ’Tis love that makes the man come round. Kisses speak louder than words. People who live in glass houses shouldn’t hold hands. The woman who deliberates is won. Where there’s a will there’s a wedding.
There is a tradition of Arcadian simplicity in dress, but it is not always observed. The men, unless Poets, are often most careful dressers, and the women deck themselves in whatever garb they deem most attractive to men.
White muslin with blue ribbons is a popular costume, and “some sort of white, shimmering stuff” is much used for gowns.
Some women are clever enough to please the men by wearing all black or all white, and the hats are invariably large black ones or broad-leafed, rose-decked straws.
Sunshades, fans, floating scarfs, and many coy adjuncts or fripperies of dress are seen, and flowers are much worn or carried.
THEN AND NOW
Oh, would I had lived in Arcadian days, When maidens had not such extravagant ways, When Daphne and Doris And Chloe and Chloris Would laugh with delight o’er a ribbon of blue Or a glittering buckle to wear on a shoe.
But the girl of today cares nothing at all For a trivial gift that is simple or small; And Ethel and Bessie And Gertrude and Jessie Will only approve of the presents I’ve brought If I spend (and I _shall_!) ten times more than I ought.
Delightful walks abound in Arcady and its environs.
If unaccustomed to its devious ways, it is perhaps better to engage the services of an experienced Guide, which may be had for a song.
Nature Lovers enjoy the walk out on the old Romany Road, across the Field of Four-Leafed Clover toward the Forest of Arden.
A more Sentimental Journey is along the Primrose Way, up Primrose Hill, and on, beyond the Night, across the Day, thus following the Course of True Love. Though this never runs smooth, it is often attempted by young Lovers, who sometimes persevere along the way and sometimes get sidetracked.
To Friends’ Shipyard is a pleasant stroll for an idle summer day. Here may be seen the Sailor laddies making knots. True lover’s knots may be bought here and carried away as souvenirs.
Another attractive walk is along Wall Street. A delightful wall, full of nooks and crannies and overhung with blossoming vines, runs all along this street. At the corner of Moonshine Avenue is a beautiful monument representing Pyramus and Thisbe.
* * * * *
A pleasant short ramble is along Amourette Avenue, past the Cosy Corners, to a Bower of Roses by Bendemeer’s Stream. The stream may be crossed by the Rustic Bridges or by the Stepping Stones, both being equally romantic.
[Illustration: “TRUE LOVER’S KNOTS MAY BE BOUGHT HERE”]
How rapidly Time shifts the scene. Again it is St. Cupid’s day, And I must send to my Rosine A gorgeous valentine bouquet. Last year I sent the same to May— Heigh-ho! I’ve led a blithe career— They’d make a rather long array, My valentines of yester-year.
In years beginning with 18— I was unfettered, free, and gay Each maiden seemed to me a queen, And to each one my court I’d pay. Now I’m engaged. Ah, well-away! Rosina _is_ a perfect dear, But I would better not display My valentines of yester-year.
No memories shall come between My love and me. And I’ll essay To keep her life calm and serene, And love her when she’s old and gray: Her lightest wish I will obey, But still—I hope she’ll never hear Those verses that I wrote in play, My valentines of yester-year.
Cupid, my secrets ne’er betray, Let me not realize my fear; And may they be destroyed, I pray, My valentines of yester-year.
The Business Section of Arcady is on Wise Acre Square, just South of Wall Street. Here may be found the Great Heart Trust, the Unbounded Trust Company, and the offices of the Trust Her Not Association. These Companies issue United States Bonds of Matrimony upon application.
The Court of Appeals and the Supreme Court are busy places, and in their courtyards sweethearts may be seen courting at any time during business hours.
They receive and negotiate Sealed Proposals and Bids and draw up Marriage contracts.
* * * * *
In the Flat Irony Building are the offices of the Love Insurance Company, the Arcady Ideal Estate Company, and other such organizations, whose advertisements may be found at the end of this volume.
IT HAPPENED IN ARCADY
THE GREAT HEART TRUST
“What is the matter, Kiddums?” said Dame Venus, as Cupid entered her boudoir, with his blue ribbon untied and limply dragging behind him, and his eyes shining through big tears, like bluebirds taking a bath.
“Mother, I’m a ruined man,” and Cupid flung himself into his own little chair, with a Delsarte gesture expressive of deepest dejection.
“What now, what now, my child?” gently inquired his beautiful parent, holding her hand-mirror a little to one side, that she might better perceive her troubled offspring.
“Why, just this. Some of those fools of finance have organized a Great Heart Trust.”
“Oh, Cupid, not really! Then your occupation is indeed gone! They have taken the very hearts out of your mouth!”
“Yes, Mother; and aside from the loss of my business, just think how horrid it is to commercialize it so! Why, I went to their office to make sure the report was true, and there they were, those horrible magnets,—or whatever they call them,—huddled round a ticker, and yelling out to one another such things as these: ‘Loyal Hearts preferred. Chicago making bold advance; sharp dealings noticed. Colorado Springs Hearts failed to rally; feeling weak and generally depressed; later, showed a slight reaction. Spinsters, no demand.’ I don’t know what it all means, I’m sure; but I see my finish, and I may as well break my arrows and unstring my bow.”
With a Delsarte gesture of vindictiveness and despair, Cupid doubled up his rosy, dimpled knee and snapped an arrow across it, throwing the pieces on the floor. Then he began to unstring his beautiful, curved bow.
Venus looked sympathetically at her only son.
“Perhaps,” she began, “it isn’t as bad as you think, dear. Perhaps,—”
“Now, isn’t that just like a woman!” exclaimed Cupid; his round pink cheeks growing rounder and pinker as he stormed on. “I just guess, Mother, if you had been down to the Heart Exchange and had heard and seen what I did, you wouldn’t say, ‘Perhaps and perhaps.’ Why, I strolled over to listen to two of the magnets talking. One man said there was a corner in the matrimonial market and the other said he was too visionary, for that market wasn’t at all affected by the Heart Trust. He said it was only a question of a deal in futures. I don’t know what they mean by such talk as that.”
“I’m sure I don’t either, Cupid,” said Venus, laying down her mirror; for she had begun to realize that the question was serious and she must give it her undivided attention, which is a difficult matter for a real Venus. “Tell me more, Son.”
“Well, I looked over a man’s shoulder, and he was reading from another of those ticker things. He was a horrid man, not the kind I like to deal with, at all. He read things like this: ‘Summer Girls. Sensational Advances. No Reserve. Public Wary. Actresses not well supported, but best of financial backing; good figures.’”
“But, Cupid, dearie, you’re not interested in hearts like those, I hope.”
“Now, Mother, you know perfectly well that a man in my business position is obliged to deal in all sorts of hearts. And I’ve always had a monopoly of the market. Now the Great Heart Trust has spoiled my trade entirely.” He broke another arrow across his knee and his quiver seemed to have transferred itself to his rosy lips.
“But, Son,” began Venus, hopefully, “doesn’t this affect city hearts only? Can’t you go to the country, and in the flowery fields and lovers’ lanes find all the business you can attend to?”
“No, Mother,” and the curly head drooped like a dandelion at midday. “This Great Heart Trust is universal. I stole a look at one of their papers this morning, and one column was headed ‘Rural Reports.’ Then it said: ‘Country depressed, dull; moving slowly. Domestic Products quiet and well-behaved; in great demand. Southern peach crop very fine; quickly snapped up.’ I can’t understand all their queer terms, but I suppose I shall have to learn them.”
“Yes, Cupid, do that. Meet them on their own ground and fight them with their own weapons. You know more about hearts than they do; think of your long experience.”
“Oh, Mother! Imagine me occupying a seat in the Heart Exchange! Why, I’d have to wear a ticker ribbon instead of my blue sash. No, I never could learn their language. Why, they talk like this: ‘Coquettes’ hearts, Common stock; a declining movement shows a hardening tendency, but the stock is unsteady, with exciting effects.’ And not only our own people are concerned, but they quote prices on Foreign Hearts, and, Mother, the rates are almost prohibitive. Then one report said, ‘Fiancées’ Hearts; do not fear local pressure!’ Now what can such talk mean? Then it said: ‘Boston. (See Ice Trust.)’ No, Mother, it’s no use; I can’t understand their jargon.”
“But, Cupid, you can learn. The age is progressive and you must keep up with it. You know yourself that for some time your methods of dealing in hearts have been considered old-fashioned. Now you must try more up-to-date ways.”
“But, Mother, some reports are so sad. Their paper said today that there were many heart failures reported. Why, one heart broke at sixty—during a period of depression! And then they quoted ‘Hearts Bowed Down.’ That seemed to be a falling market, with heavy sales. Several hearts were lost or stolen, and altogether it made me feel panic-stricken. And what do you think, they quoted ‘Husbands’ as inclined to firmness, but showing bearish indications! No, it’s all out of my line. I know my business, I’ve practised it many, many years, and I’m too old to learn new tricks.”
Venus looked at her son in much the same way that any mother looks at her child when she knows she can help him out of his difficulty.
“You dear, silly child,” she said, “you’re needlessly alarmed. Every trust must have its day, but they all fail sooner or later. Bide your time, and after a while you’ll find that the trust is all over, and you can carry on the game in your own sweet way. I have heard of some kind of a queer machine,—I think it’s called a ‘trust buster,’—invented just on purpose to break up these trusts. I’ll get you one. Now kiss me and run away and play.”
Venus picked up her mirror again and sat gazing at her beautiful nose in rapt admiration of that classic member.
Cupid cheered up considerably. “Mother, you’re a blessing,” he said, as he kissed the tip of her ear. “But,” he added, as he ran away to chase butterflies, “after this trust-buster thing has done its smashing, _won’t_ I have a time mending all the broken hearts!”
DIRE DESTRUCTION AND DEPLORABLE DISASTER
DESOLATION AND DEVASTATION CAUSED BY AN APPALLING AIRQUAKE
THOUSANDS OF CASTLES IN THE AIR OVERTHROWN AND DEMOLISHED
(_From our own correspondent_)
ARCADY: A terrible airquake has wrought havoc in the densely populated atmosphere above this locality. Without a word of warning, noble and beautiful castles in the air went toppling to their ruin.
Though difficult to get details in these first hours of confusion and distress, it is known that the sumptuous air castle built by Claude Melnotte for the Lady of Lyons is entirely demolished. The devastated area is widespread, and from the most magnificent dream of marble halls to the humblest vision of love in a cottage, all of the _Chateaux en Espagne_ have fallen. It is feared that many loves have been lost in the ruins. Even now the agents of the Love Insurance Company are on the spot estimating the casualties. Many of the survivors declare they will rebuild at the earliest possible moment. Indeed, it may safely be predicted that new and more elaborate and beautiful castles in the air will soon take the place of the old ones. Among the débris of ruined hopes and shattered ideals, pathetic sights may be seen. Here a broken resolution sticks up through the mass of fragments, there a broken promise; and everywhere are fallen idols and upset plans. The explorer is menaced by pits of boiling imagination and fine frenzies rolling. But relief supplies are already being received. A ship, with Youth at the helm and Pleasure at the prow, has just come into the harbor, bringing a cargo of fresh hopes and such stuff as dreams are made of.
Owing to the prevalence of mirage it is difficult to give definite statistics; but the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow is still visible, and the sanguine, light-hearted people have already begun to rear anew their castles in the air.
_From the Arcadian News_
PERSONALLY CONDUCTED HONEYMOON TOURS
BILLINGS & COO, PROPRIETORS
Why trouble yourself with the details of traveling and its paraphernalia, at a time when your heart, mind, and soul are all absorbed in other matters?
Why descend to the sordid buying of tickets and checking of luggage, when your spirit is soaring in realms of Empyrean bliss?
Why puzzle over the baffling intricacies of a time-table, when you can be looking into the lustrous orbs of your Bride?
Why suffer the irritating Emergencies of Travel, when your way may be made a path of Roses by embarking on one of our Personally Conducted Wedding Trips?
All Routes to suit all Temperaments!
The Totally Oblivious are piloted safely through a hackneyed and uneventful Trip.
The Fearfully Embarrassed are shielded and screened from unpleasant observation.
The Ostentatiously Happy are paraded in public and brought into delightful prominence on trains and in hotels.
The Blissfully Enraptured are conducted to Sentimental Spots and on Romantic Rambles.
One of D. Cupid’s Own Guides, in Blue Ribbon Uniform, takes entire charge of each Happy Couple and attends to all details of the Trip. At the request of the Bride he will write letters home to her mother from every stopping-place or will, at the order of the Bridegroom, extend his Letters of Credit or telegraph his bank for more funds.
These Tours are entirely _de luxe_. The routes are strewn with roses all the way. Sunshiny and balmy weather guaranteed. Not one bored moment, or Money Refunded.
Write at once for Prospectus.
BILLINGS & COO
THE BRIDAL PATH
ORANGE BLOSSOM PARK
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MUTUAL-BENEFIT LOVE-INSURANCE COMPANY
Lovers, Attention! Is your love insured? Other loves are dead; your love may die. You insure your life, your house, your barns. Why not insure your love?
This company is incorporated under the laws of the United States, and its affairs are conducted by a board of directors, including some of our best known poets and novelists, and it is approved in all respects by the board of underpaid writers.
MEMBERSHIP: Any lover between the ages of eighteen and seventy, of sound body and (otherwise) sound mind, in good health (excepting such maladies as are traceable to the fact of his or her being in love) and of temperate habits, whose occupation comes within certain classifications hereinafter specified, shall be eligible to membership.
Policies are issued only upon healthy, honest loves subscribed and sworn to by both parties interested therein, and guaranteed to be not like other loves.
PROHIBITED RISKS: Citizens of Chicago, members of the theatrical profession, students of co-educational colleges, naval heroes, and summer girls are not eligible to membership, and their applications will not be considered by this company.
Applicants must answer truthfully and without evasion the following questions:
State name, including all nicknames or pet names used during the love to be insured.
How long have you been in love?
Was it love at first sight?
Are you (1) handsome, (2) good-looking, or (3) plain?
Are you susceptible to flattery?
Are you of a jealous disposition?
Have you ever had Heart-disease? Palpitation? Melancholia? Lover-complaint? Blues? Heart-failure?
What is your occupation? (Specify this definitely. If a business man, state if lady typewriters are employed, and if so, how many and of what appearance. Append photographs if possible.)
Where do you spend your vacations?
Are there widows there?
Any applicant answering these questions satisfactorily is entitled to a policy in our company that shall provide indemnity for the death of a love which, though it may now seem deathless, is often subject to mortal injury in this uncertain life of ours.
DAN CUPID, _Agent_
NO. 7 PRIMROSE PATH
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[Illustration: “THE BLISSFULLY ENRAPTURED ARE CONDUCTED TO SENTIMENTAL SPOTS”]
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AIR CASTLES UP TO DATE
All the Modern Improvements Spanish Building and Loan Association Home is where the heart is! Own your own home!
Why live in a mundane flat when you can have a Castle in the Air?
At a small outlay you may secure a beautiful site and a large and commodious dwelling
All styles to suit all tastes!
Love-in-a-Cottage Type. Rose-embowered Porch Dimity-curtained Windows. Dream of Marble Halls Specially selected Vassals and Serfs. Ruined Castle Effects Ivy-hung Turrets. Secret Staircase to Tower
_Write for circulars and Prospectus_
! ! ! A Few desirable plots for Sale on Lover’s Lane! ! !
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The magnificent apartment house, corner Arden Avenue and Paradise Alley
This apartment air castle is built and finished with a careful attention to detail, which combines Eighteenth-century Romance with Nineteenth-century convenience. Among its advantages over older air castles are:
Express Elevator to Seventh Heaven
Trolley Line to Arcady
Dream Interpreter Call and United States Valentine Chute on every floor
Lighted by an Automatic Electric Moon
Surrounded by sturdy oaks and clinging vines.
Owing to the recent depreciations in Ideal Estate you may be interested in
_La Romanza_!!! _Write for particulars and terms to_
_Ideal Estate Agent_
NO. 7 PRIMROSE PATH
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There’s a new heart awaiting a tenant, To whom shall its portals unclose? Dan Cupid is floating his pennant At The Sign of the Lily and Rose.
This heart is not offered for selling, The owner all freely bestows A hostelry fit for Love’s dwelling, At The Sign of the Lily and Rose.
There’s a happy smile caught in her dimple, That only a debutante shows; And chatter is guileless and simple At the Sign of the Lily and Rose.
She’s pleased with the veriest trifles, No artful bewitchment she knows; But Cupid a sigh or two stifles At The Sign of the Lily and Rose.
And, indeed, the poor fellow has reason As he thinks of the long string of beaux Who’ll successively stop for a season At The Sign of the Lily and Rose.
[Illustration: LOVE PROOF WINDOW SCREENS]
Love-Proof Window Screens fill a long-felt want. Easily adjusted. Non-penetrable. With these screens in place, Love cannot fly out of the window when Poverty comes in at the Door.
TRUELOVE & CO.
77 MARRION STREET
DOCTOR IRIS. Diagnostician for all blindness or eye troubles caused by Love. 24 C Street.
[Illustration: MAP OF _THE TOWN OF_ ARCADY _Surveyed by George Hood_]
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Punctuation and type-setting errors have been corrected without note. Hyphenation and archaic spellings have been retained as in the original.