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Then he flew to the moun-tain and pow-dered its crest;
Of the quiv-er-ing lake he spread
Where a rock would rear its head.
He went to the win-dows of those who slept,
By the light of the moon were seen
All pic-tared in sil-ver sheen.
But he did one thing that was hard-ly fair;
"Now just to set them a think-ing,
Shall tchick! to show them I'm drink-ing."
LESSON XCIV. THE LOST CHILD AND THE LAMB.
A lit-tle child wan-dered from its moth-er's cot-tage to the green mcad-ows in search of flowers. Pleased with the pur-suit, and find-ing new pleas-ures the more she sought, it was nearly night before she thought of re-turning. But in vain she turned her steps. She had lost her way. The thick clumps of trees that she had passed were no guide, and she could not tell wheth-er home was be-tween her and the set-ting sun or not.
She sat down and wept. She looked in all di-rec-tions in hope of see-ing some one to lead her home-ward, but no one ap-peared. She strained her eyes, now dim with tears, to catch a sight of the smoke curl-ing from the cot she had left. It was like look-ing out on the o-cean, with no sail in view. She was a-lone in, as it were, a wil-der-ness. Hours had passed since she had left her moth-er's arms. A few hours more, and the dark night would be a-round her, the stars would look down up-on, her, and her hair would be wet with the dew.
She knelt on the ground and prayed. Her moth-er in the cot-tage was be-yond the reach of her voice, but her heav-en-ly Fath-er she knew was al-ways near, and could hear her fee-blest cry. Ma-ry had been taught to say "Our Fath-er," and in this time of sor-row, when friends were far away, and there was none to help, she called upon Him who has said to lit-tle chil-dren, "Come unto me."
Ma-ry had closed her eyes in prayer, and when she o-pened them, com-fort-ed in spir-it, and al-most resigned to her fate, wil-ling to trust God for the fu-ture, and to sleep, if need-ful, in the grass, with His arm a-round her and His love a-bove her, she es-pied a lamb. It was seek-ing the ten-der-est herbs a-mong the tall grass, and had strayed a-way from its moth-er and the flock, so that Ma-ry saw at a glance she had a conipan-ion in her sol-i-tude, and her heart was glad-dened as if she heard the voice and saw the face of a friend.
The lamb was hap-py also. It played at her side, and
took the lit-tle tufts of grass from her hand as read-i-ly as if Ma-ry had been its friend from in-fan-cy.
And the lamb leaped a-way, and looked back to see if its new-found play-mate would fol-low. Ma-ry's heart went out af-ter the lamb, as it gam-bolled be-fore her. Now the lit-tle thing would sport by her side, and then would rush for-ward as if about to for-sake her al-togeth-er; but soon it would re-turn, or wait un-til she came up with it. Ma-ry had no thought, no anx-i-e-ty what-ev-er as to whith-er the lamb was lead-ing her. She was lost; she had no friend to help her in her distress; the lamb had found her in her lone-li-ness, and she loved it, and loved to fol-low it, and she would go wher-ev-er it should go. So she went on, un-til she be-gan to be wea-ry of the way, but not of her com-pan-y.
The sun was just set-ting-a sum-mer sun, and her shad-ow stretched a-way be-fore her as if she were tall as a tree. She was think-ing of home, and won-der-ing if she should ev-er find the way back to her moth-er's house and her moth-er's heart, when the lamb all of a sud-den sprang a-way over a gen-tle knoll, and as she reached it her sport-ing play-mate had found the flock from which it had strayed, and they were all, the lamb and Ma-ry, with-in sight of home. The lamb had led Ma-ry home.
Who has not some-times felt as this child, away from his fath-er's house, in search of plea-sure till he is lost? He knows not whith-er to look for some one to guide him home-ward. He prays. His eye of faith, blind-ed just now with tears of grief be-cause he has wan-dered, catch-es sight of the Lamb, who leads him to his Fath-er's house, where his tears are wiped away, and he is wel. comed and fold-ed in the arms of e-ter-nal love.—Abbott.
LESSON XCV.—A LESSON OF FAITH.
'' Let me hire you as a nurse for my poor chil-dren," said a But-ter-fly to a qui-et Cat-er-pil-lar, who was strol-ling a-long a cab-bage-leaf in her odd lum-ber-ing way. "See these lit-tle eggs," con-tin-ued the But-terfly; "I don't know how long it will be be-fore they come to life, and I feel very sick and poor-ly ; and if I should die, who will take care of my ba-by but-ter-fiies when I am gone? Will you, kind, mild, green Cat-erpil-lar? But you must mind what you give them to eat, Cat-er-pil-lar; they can-not, of course, live on your rough food. You must give them ear-ly dew, and hon-ey from the flow-ers; and you must let them fly a-bout, on-ly a lit-tle way at first; for, of course, one can't expect them to use their wings prop-er-ly all at once. Dear me! it is a sad pit-y you can-not fly your-self. But I have no time to look for an-oth-er nurse now, so you will do your best, I hope. Dear ! dear! I can-not think what made me come and lay my eggs on a cab-bage leaf! What a place for young but-ter-fiies to be born up-on! Still, you will be kind, will you not, to the poor lit-tle ones? Here, take this gold-dust from my wings as a re-ward. Oh, how diz-zy I am! Cat-er-pil-lar! you will re-mem-ber a-bout the food." And with these words the But-ter-fly closed her eyes and died; and the green Cater-pil-lar, who had not had the op-por-tu-ni-ty of e-ven say-ing, Yes, or No, to the re-quest, was left stand-ing a-lone by the side of the But-ter-fly's eggs.
"A pret-ty nurse she has cho-sen, in-deed, poor la-dy!" ex-claimed she, " and a pret-ty bus-i-ness I have in hand! Why, her sen-ses must have left her, or she nev-er would have asked a poor crawl-ing crea-ture like me to bring
up her dain-ty lit-tle ones. Much they'll mind me, tru-ly, when they feel the gay wings on their backs, and can fly a-way out of my sight when-ev-er they choose. Ah ! how sil-ly some peo-ple are, in spite of their paint-ed clothes and the gold-dust on their wings.” How-ev-er, the poor But-ter-fly was dead, and there lay the eggs on the cab-bage leaf; and the green Cat-er-pil-lar had a kind heart, so she re-solved to do her best. But she got no sleep that night, she was so ver-y anx-ious. She made her back quite ache with walk-ing all night long round her young char-ges, for fear a-ny harm should hap-pen to them; and in the morn-ing says she to herself, “ Two heads are better than one. I will con-sult some wise an-i-mal up-on the mat-ter, and get ad-vice. How should a poor crawl-ing creature like me know what to do with-out ask-ing my bet-ters ?”
But still there was a dif-fi-cul-ty-whom should the Cat-er-pil-lar con-sult? There was the shag-gy Dog, who some-times came in-to the gar-den. But he was so rough, he would most like-ly whisk all the eggs off the cab-bage-leaf with one brush of his tail, if she called him near to talk to her, and then she should nev-er forgive her-self. There was the Tom Cat, to be sure, who would some-times sit at the foot of the ap-ple tree, basking him-self and warm-ing his fur in the sun-shine; but he was so sel-fish and in-dif-fer-ent,—there was no hope of his giv-ing him-self the trou-ble to think a-bout butter-flies' eggs. “I won-der which is the wis-est of all the an-i-mals I know,” sighed the Cat-er-pil-lar, in great dis-tress; and then she thought of the Lark, and she fan-cied that be-cause he went up so high, and nobod-y knew where he went to, he must be ver-y clever, and know a great deal; for to go up ver-y high (which