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Reprinted Pieces - Charles Dickens

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Reprinted Pieces by Charles Dickens

Reprinted Pieces

THE LONG VOYAGE



WHEN the wind is blowing and the sleet or rain is driving against
the dark windows, I love to sit by the fire, thinking of what I
have read in books of voyage and travel.  Such books have had a
strong fascination for my mind from my earliest childhood; and I
wonder it should have come to pass that I never have been round the
world, never have been shipwrecked, ice-environed, tomahawked, or
eaten.

Sitting on my ruddy hearth in the twilight of New Year's Eve, I
find incidents of travel rise around me from all the latitudes and
longitudes of the globe.  They observe no order or sequence, but
appear and vanish as they will - 'come like shadows, so depart.'
Columbus, alone upon the sea with his disaffected crew, looks over
the waste of waters from his high station on the poop of his ship,
and sees the first uncertain glimmer of the light, 'rising and
falling with the waves, like a torch in the bark of some
fisherman,' which is the shining star of a new world.  Bruce is
caged in Abyssinia, surrounded by the gory horrors which shall
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