Oldalképek
PDF
ePub

liant action, for the sufficient reason that, though there were seven young gentlemen (connected with the Primary School) on the field as war correspondents, their accounts of the engagement are so contradictory as to be utterly worthless. On one point they all agree — that the contest was sharp, short, and decisive. The truth is, the General is a quick, wiry, experienced old hero; and it did n't take him long to rout the Barnabee Boy, who was in reality a coward, as all bullies and tyrants ever have been, and always will be.

I don't approve of boys fighting; I don't defend Johnny; but if the General wants an extra ration or two of preserved pear, he shall have it!

I am well aware that, socially speaking, Johnny is a Black Sheep. I know that I have brought him up badly, and that there is not an unmarried man or woman in the United States who would n't have brought him up very differently. It's a great pity that the only people who know how to manage children never have any! At the same time, Johnny is not a black sheep all over. He has some white spots. His sins — if wiser folks had no greater! — are the result of too much animal life. They belong to his evanescent youth, and will pass away; but his honesty, his generosity, his bravery, belong to his character, and are enduring qualities. The quickly crowding years will tame him. A good large pane of glass, or a seductive bell-knob, ceases in time to have attractions for the most reckless spirit. And I am quite confident that Johnny will be a great statesman, or a valorous soldier, or, at all events, a good citizen, after he has got over being A Young Desperado.

A GROUP OF CHRISTMAS POEMS

AT THE MANGER

BY JOHN B. TABB

When first, her Christmas watch to keep,
Came down the silent Angel, Sleep,

With snowy sandals shod,
Beholding what his mother's hands
Had wrought, with softer swaddling-bands

She swathed the Son of God.

Then, skilled in mysteries of Night,
With tender visions of delight

She wreathed his resting-place,
Till, wakened by a warmer glow
Than heaven itself had yet to show,

He saw his mother's face.

THE LITTLE CHRIST

BY LAURA SPENCER PORTOR

MOTHER, I am thy little Son

Why weepest thou?

Hush! for I see a crown of thorns,

A bleeding brow.

Mother, I am thy little Son

Why dost thou sigh?

Hush! for the shadow of the years

Stoopeth more nigh!

Mother, I am thy little Son

Oh, smile on me.
The birds sing blithe, the birds sing gay,

The leaf laughs on the tree.

Oh, hush thee! The leaves do shiver sore;

That tree whereon they grow,
I see it hewn, and bound, to bear

The weight of human woe!

Mother, I am thy little Son

The Night comes on apace
When all God's waiting stars shall smile

On me in thy embrace.

Oh, hush thee! I see black starless night!

Oh, could'st thou slip away
Now, by the hawthorn hedge of Death

And get to God by Day!

AT CHRYSTEMESSE-TYDE

BY WILLIS BOYD ALLEN

Two sorrie Thynges there be

Ay, three:
A Neste from which ye Fledglings have been taken,

A Lambe forsaken,
A redde leaf from ye Wilde Rose rudely shaken.

Of gladde Thynges there be more —

Ay, four:
A Larke above ye olde Neste blithely singing,

A Wilde Rose clinging
In safety to a Rock, a Shepherde bringing
A Lambe, found, in his armes, and Chrystemesse

Bells a-ringing.

PARABLES IN MOTORS

THE CONTRIBUTORS' CLUB

The other day I was escorting an elderly philanthropist across a crowded street. She is a lady of vigorous opinions and free speech, gems of which I herewith string together without exhibiting the thread of my own colorless rejoinders.

“Did you ever see anything so outrageous as these motors!” she exclaimed in righteous wrath, as we just escaped being crushed between a taxi-cab and a huge touring-car. “Automobiles are such insolent advertisements of wealth! I don't see how their owners can endure being either hated or envied by that portion of the world that has not yet lost the use of its legs. For every human being automobiles kill, they create a socialist. They are vulgar, hideous, death-dealing machines, put in the ignorant hands of the fools who own them and the knaves who run them. Now look at those little children trying to cross the street — and that poor old lady! I declare the chauffeur is simply chasing her for his own cruel sport — hunting her as he would a fox, and blowing his horn.” Then, — in italics,

in italics, — I can't see how a self-respecting person with any love or regard for humanity can own a motor.

The next time I saw my vindictive friend she was tucked up in borrowed plumage, and comfortably installed in the limousine of an acquaintance who had

kindly placed her car at our disposal to visit some distant charitable institution of which we were both directors. It was my friend's maiden trip in an automobile, and as we bowled gayly along she seemed to have forgotten entirely our last meeting and conversation.

“I must say the motion of these cars is delightful," she said, sinking back among the cushions with an air of perfect ease and familiarity. “How safe we seem! I really think it would do no harm if the chauffeur should go a little faster. Do look at those stupid women rushing across the street like frightened hens! I should think they'd see that we're not going to run into them. Now look at those children! It's outrageous that they should make it so hard for the chauffeur to avoid running over them. If we killed one of those foolhardy little idiots, people would blame us, and it would n't be our fault at all - it would be simply a case of suicide."

I acquiesced in her views, as I had done once before.

“After all, there is a great deal to be said for these motors,” she continued judicially. “They are not only perfectly delightful to ride in, but they make all kinds of difficult things easy, and really, most of the people who own them are apt to be very considerate to those who are less fortunate. There are certainly two sides to automobiling.”

There you have the chief function of the motor. There is nothing else I can think of which changes one's point of view so completely and so suddenly. A logical mind must therefore ask itself, “If by simply stepping into an automobile I can see motors and motoring from an entirely different point of view, cannot I believe that the same metamorphosis would take place if I could jump

« ElőzőTovább »