Yet the manner in which historic extremes have so often met was never more strangely exhibited than in a fact in early Quaker tradition revealed by Whittier to Mrs. Fields. In speaking of Rossetti and his extraordinary medieval ballad of “Sister Helen,” Whittier confessed himself strongly attracted to it, because he could remember seeing his mother, “who was as good a woman as ever breathed,” with his aunt, performing the strange act on which the ballad turns, and melting a waxen figure of a clergyman of their time, that his soul might go to its doom in hell. “The solemnity of the affair made a deep impression on his mind, as a child, for the death of the clergyman in question was confidently expected. His ‘heresies’ had led him to experience this cabalistic treatment.” The aim of the mystic ceremony was to destroy the soul of the passing invalid, and it seems almost incredible that any sight or memory of human suffering should have called forth such a spirit of revenge in those seemingly gentle women. No one who has ever read the tragic close of Rossetti's song can ever forget it.
 they have got to get the world's folks to do it for them, for two hundred years of silence have taken all the sing out of our people.
‘See, see, the wax has dropped from its place,
And the waves are winning up apace!’
‘Yet here they burn but for a space,
（O Mother, Mary, Mother, Here for a space, between Hell and Heaven!)