the ground on another, we cease to be soldiers in the 
army of the upright; we become deserters. They march 
to battle. We float with the sticks on the stream; helter
skelter with the dead leaves on the lawn, irresponsible and 
disinterested and able, perhaps for the first time for years, 
to look round, to look up—to look, for example, at the 

The first impression of that extraordinary spectacle is 
strangely overcoming. Ordinarily to look at the sky for 
any length of time is impossible. Pedestrians would be 
impeded and disconcerted by a public sky-gazer. What 
snatches we get of it are mutilated by chimneys and 
churches, serve as a background for man, signify wet 
weather or fine, daub windows gold, and, filling in the 
branches, complete the pathos of dishevelled autumnal 
plane trees in London squares. Now, become as the leaf
or the daisy, lying recumbent, staring straight up, the sky 
is discovered to be something so different from this that 
really it is a little shocking. This then has been going on 
all the time without our knowing it!—this incessant 
making up of shapes and casting them down, this buffeting 
of clouds together, and drawing vast trains of ships and 
waggons from North to South, this incessant ringing up 
and down of curtains of light and shade, this interminable 
experiment with gold shafts and blue shadows, with veiling 
the sun and unveiling it, with making rock ramparts and 
wafting them away—this endless activity, with the waste
of Heaven knows how many million horse power of energy, 
has been left to work its will year in year out. The fact 
seems to call for comment and indeed for censure. Some 
one should write to The Times about it. Use should 
be made of it. One should not let this gigantic cinema 
play perpetually to an empty house. But watch a little 
longer and another emotion drowns the stirrings of civic 
ardour. Divinely beautiful it is also divinely heartless. 
Immeasurable resources are used for some purpose which