As she rode alone, the fronds of breast-high ferns seemed to caress her with outstretched and gently-detaining hands; strange wildflowers sprang up through the parting underbrush; even the granite rocks that at times pressed closely upon the trail appeared as if cushioned to her contact with star-rayed mosses
, or lightly flung after her long lassoes of delicate vines.
We were still in the pleasant shade of forest trees, we were still in a region which was cushioned with beautiful mosses
and aglow with the many-tinted luster of innumerable wild flowers.
Brown or green, red or yellow mosses
and lichen spread their romantic tints on trees and seats and roofs and stones.
The wild fruits were her food, the fresh dew in the flower-cups her drink, while the green leaves served her for little robes; and thus she found garments in the flowers of the field, and a happy home with Mother Brown-Breast; and all in the wood, from the stately trees to the little mosses
in the turf, were friends to the merry child.
Then, perhaps, a little rain falls, and all the trees and the bushes and the bamboos and the mosses
and the juicy-leaved plants wake with a noise of growing that you can almost hear, and under this noise runs, day and night, a deep hum.
Advancing in single file along the bank of the stream, we soon found that it narrowed down to a mere brook, and finally that it lost itself in a great green morass of sponge-like mosses
, into which we sank up to our knees.
As he began to wander down the course of the stream, in idle but romantic curiosity, and saw the water shining in short strips between the great gray boulders and bushes as soft as great green mosses
, he fell into quite an opposite vein of fantasy.
She clung to him without answering, and he laid his lips on her hair, which was soft yet springy, like certain mosses
on warm slopes, and had the faint woody fragrance of fresh sawdust in the sun.
It had the semblance of a pleasant meadow, whose slender grasses and whose velvety mosses
were frosted with a shining dust, and tinted with palest green that deepened gradually to the darkest hue of the orange leaf, and deepened yet again into gravest brown, then faded into orange, then into brightest gold, and culminated in the delicate pink of a new-blown rose.
The sun, darting his last rays beneath the masses of heaped-up cloud, adorned with a crest of gold the slightest inequalities of the ground below; gigantic trees, arborescent bushes, mosses
on the even surface--all had their share of this luminous effulgence.
And so many twining branches, so many mosses
, bent by the bitter wind of ocean, so many lichens solder thy sepulcher to earth, that no passers-by will imagine such a block of granite could ever have been supported by the shoulders of one man.
So it was nearly sundown when they finally came to the trees; but now they found themselves in a most beautiful spot, the wide-spreading trees being covered with flowering vines and having soft mosses