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[146] various phases of wind and water may often be included in a single day. On three mornings out of four the wind blows northwest down our bay, then dies to a calm before noon. After an hour or two of perfect stillness, you see the line of blue ripple coming up from the ocean till it conquers all the paler water, and the southwest breeze sets in. This middle zone of calm is like the noonday of the Romans, when they feared to speak, lest the great god Pan should be awakened. While it lasts, a thin, aerial veil drops over the distant hills of Conanicut, then draws nearer and nearer till it seems to touch your boat, the very nearest section of space being filled with a faint disembodied blueness, like that which fills on winter days, in colder regions, the hollows of the snow. Sky and sea show but gradations of the same color, and afford but modifications of the same element. In this quietness, yonder schooner seems not so much to lie at anchor in the water as to anchor the water, so that both cease to move; and though faint ripples may come and go elsewhere on the surface, the vessel rests in this liquid island of absolute calm. For there certainly is elsewhere

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