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Wit and Humor of America, The Vol 02

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<SPAN name="Page_222" id="Page_222">[Pg 222]</SPAN></span> Hodge-Podge of Varying Styles and Contradictory Effects, and Exceedingly Uncomfortable and Inconvenient to Live In.</p> <h3>MORALS:</h3> <p>This Fable teaches that In a Multitude of Counselors there is Safety, and that Too Many Cooks Spoil the Broth.</p> <hr style="width: 65%;" /> <h2>YES?</h2> <h3>BY JOHN BOYLE O'REILLY</h3> <div class="poem"><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">The words of the lips are double or single,<br /></span> <span class="i2">True or false, as we say or sing:<br /></span> <span class="i0">But the words of the eyes that mix and mingle<br /></span> <span class="i2">Are always saying the same old thing.<br /></span> </div></div> <hr style="width: 65%;" /> <h2>FASCINATION</h2> <h3>BY JOHN B. TABB</h3> <div class="poem"><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">Among your many playmates here,<br /></span> <span class="i0">How is it that you all prefer<br /></span> <span class="i2">Your little friend, my dear?<br /></span> <span class="i0">"Because, mamma, tho' hard we try,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Not one of us can spit so high,<br /></span> <span class="i2">And catch it in his ear."<br /></span> <span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_223" id="Page_223">[Pg 223]</SPAN></span></div></div> <hr style="width: 65%;" /> <h2>BARNEY MCGEE</h2> <h3>BY RICHARD HOVEY</h3> <div class="poem"><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">Barney McGee, there's no end of good luck in you,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Will-o'-the-wisp, with a flicker of Puck in you,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Wild as a bull-pup, and all of his pluck in you&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i0">Let a man tread on your coat and he'll see!<br /></span> <span class="i0">Eyes like the lakes of Killarney for clarity,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Nose that turns up without any vulgarity,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Smile like a cherub, and hair that is carroty&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i0">Whoop, you're a rarity, Barney McGee!<br /></span> <span class="i0">Mellow as Tarragon,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Prouder than Aragon&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i0">Hardly a paragon,<br /></span> <span class="i0">You will agree&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i0">Here's all that's fine to you!<br /></span> <span class="i0">Books and old wine to you!<br /></span> <span class="i0">Girls be divine to you,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Barney McGee!<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">Lucky the day when I met you unwittingly,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Dining where vagabonds came and went flittingly.<br /></span> <span class="i0">Here's some <i>Barbera</i> to drink it befittingly,<br /></span> <span class="i0">That day at Silvio's, Barney McGee!<br /></span> <span class="i0">Many's the time we have quaffed our Chianti there,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Listened to Silvio quoting us Dante there&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i0">Once more to drink Nebiolo spumante there,<br /></span> <span class="i0">How we'd pitch Pommery into the sea!<br /></span> <span class="i0">There where the gang of us<br /></span> <span class="i0">Met ere Rome rang of us,</span><span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_224" id="Page_224">[Pg 224]</SPAN></span><br /> <span class="i0">They had the hang of us<br /></span> <span class="i0">To a degree.<br /></span> <span class="i0">How they would trust to you!<br /></span> <span class="i0">That was but just to you.<br /></span> <span class="i0">Here's o'er their dust to you,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Barney McGee!<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">Barney McGee, when you're sober you scintillate,<br /></span> <span class="i0">But when you're in drink you're the pride of the intellect;<br /></span> <span class="i0">Divil a one of us ever came in till late,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Once at the bar where you happened to be&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i0">Every eye there like a spoke in you centering,<br /></span> <span class="i0">You with your eloquence, blarney, and bantering&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i0">All Vagabondia shouts at your entering,<br /></span> <span class="i0">King of the Tenderloin, Barney McGee!<br /></span> <span class="i0">There's no satiety<br /></span> <span class="i0">In your society<br /></span> <span class="i0">With the variety<br /></span> <span class="i0">Of your esprit.<br /></span> <span class="i0">Here's a long purse to you,<br /></span> <span class="i0">And a great thirst to you!<br /></span> <span class="i0">Fate be no worse to you,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Barney McGee!<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">Och, and the girls whose poor hearts you deracinate,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Whirl and bewilder and flutter and fascinate!<br /></span> <span class="i0">Faith, it's so killing you are, you assassinate&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i0">Murder's the word for you, Barney McGee!<br /></span> <span class="i0">Bold when they're sunny, and smooth when they're showery&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i0">Oh, but the style of you, fluent and flowery!<br /></span> <span class="i0">Chesterfield's way, with a touch of the Bowery!<br /></span> <span class="i0">How would they silence you, Barney machree?<br /></span> <span class="i0">Naught can your gab allay,</span><span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_225" id="Page_225">[Pg 225]</SPAN></span><br /> <span class="i0">Learned as Rabelais<br /></span> <span class="i0">(You in his abbey lay<br /></span> <span class="i0">Once on the spree).<br /></span> <span class="i0">Here's to the smile of you,<br /></span> <span class="i0">(Oh, but the guile of you!)<br /></span> <span class="i0">And a long while of you,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Barney McGee!<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">Facile with phrases of length and Latinity,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Like honorificabilitudinity,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Where is the maid could resist your vicinity,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Wiled by the impudent grace of your plea?<br /></span> <span class="i0">Then your vivacity and pertinacity<br /></span> <span class="i0">Carry the day with the divil's audacity;<br /></span> <span class="i0">No mere veracity robs your sagacity<br /></span> <span class="i0">Of perspicacity, Barney McGee.<br /></span> <span class="i0">When all is new to them,<br /></span> <span class="i0">What will you do to them?<br /></span> <span class="i0">Will you be true to them?<br /></span> <span class="i0">Who shall decree?<br /></span> <span class="i0">Here's a fair strife to you!<br /></span> <span class="i0">Health and long life to you!<br /></span> <span class="i0">And a great wife to you, Barney McGee!<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">Barney McGee, you're the pick of gentility;<br /></span> <span class="i0">Nothing can phase you, you've such a facility;<br /></span> <span class="i0">Nobody ever yet found your utility&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i0">There is the charm of you, Barney McGee;<br /></span> <span class="i0">Under conditions that others would stammer in,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Still unperturbed as a cat or a Cameron,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Polished as somebody in the Decameron,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Putting the glamour on price or Pawnee.<br /></span> <span class="i0">In your meanderin',<br /></span> <span class="i0">Love and philanderin',</span><span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_226" id="Page_226">[Pg 226]</SPAN></span><br /> <span class="i0">Calm as a mandarin<br /></span> <span class="i0">Sipping his tea!<br /></span> <span class="i0">Under the art of you,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Parcel and part of you,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Here's to the heart of you,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Barney McGee!<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">You who were ever alert to befriend a man,<br /></span> <span class="i0">You who were ever the first to defend a man,<br /></span> <span class="i0">You who had always the money to lend a man,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Down on his luck and hard up for a V!<br /></span> <span class="i0">Sure, you'll be playing a harp in beatitude<br /></span> <span class="i0">(And a quare sight you will be in that attitude)&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i0">Some day, where gratitude seems but a platitude,<br /></span> <span class="i0">You'll find your latitude, Barney McGee.<br /></span> <span class="i0">That's no flim-flam at all,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Frivol or sham at all,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Just the plain&mdash;Damn it all,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Have one with me!<br /></span> <span class="i0">Here's one and more to you!<br /></span> <span class="i0">Friends by the score to you,<br /></span> <span class="i0">True to the core to you,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Barney McGee!<br /></span> <span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_227" id="Page_227">[Pg 227]</SPAN></span></div></div> <hr style="width: 65%;" /> <h2>THE OLD DEACON'S VERSION OF THE STORY OF THE RICH MAN AND LAZARUS</h2> <h3>BY FRANK L. STANTON</h3> <div class="poem"><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">I s'pose yo' know de story, O my brotherin', er de man<br /></span> <span class="i0">Dat wuz rich ez cream, en livin' on de fatness er de lan'?<br /></span> <span class="i0">How he sot dar eatin' 'possum, en when Laz'rus ax fer some,<br /></span> <span class="i0">He tell 'im: "Git erway, dar! fer you'll never git a crumb!"<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">De rich man wuz a feastin' f'um his chiny plate en cup,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Kaze he 'fraid his po' relations come en eat his wittles up;<br /></span> <span class="i0">I spec' he had <i>two</i> 'possums on de table long en wide,<br /></span> <span class="i0">En a jimmyjohn er cane juice wuz a-settin' by his side.<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">En he say: "Dis heah des suits me, en I gwine ter eat my fill;<br /></span> <span class="i0">But I'll sic de dogs on Laz'rus, ef he waitin' roun' heah still."<br /></span> <span class="i0">En de dogs commence dey barkin', raise a racket high en low,<br /></span> <span class="i0">En when Laz'rus see 'em comin' he decide 'twuz time ter go.<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">So, he limp off on his crutches, en de rich man think it's fun,<br /></span> <span class="i0">But I reckon Laz'rus answer: "I'll git even wid you, son!"<br /></span> <span class="i0">De rich man so enjoy hisse'f he laugh hisse'f ter bed,<br /></span> <span class="i0">En, brotherin', when he wake up he wuz stiff, stone dead!</span><span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_228" id="Page_228">[Pg 228]</SPAN></span><br /> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">En den he raise a racket, en he holler out: "What dis?<br /></span> <span class="i0">De place is onfamiliar, en I wonder whar' I is?"<br /></span> <span class="i0">Den Satan, he mek answer: "I'm de man ter tell you dat:<br /></span> <span class="i0">You's in de fire department er de place I livin' at!"<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">Den de rich man say: "Whar' Laz'rus dat wuz beggin' at my gate?"<br /></span> <span class="i0">En Satan tell him: "Yander, wid a silver spoon en plate;<br /></span> <span class="i0">En he eatin' fit ter kill hisse'f! He spendin' er de day<br /></span> <span class="i0">Wid good ol' Mister Abra'm, but he mighty fur away!"<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">"Will you please, suh," say de rich man, "ax him bring a drink ter me,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Wid a li'l' ice ter cool it? Kaze I hot ez hot kin be!"<br /></span> <span class="i0">But Satan fall ter laughin', whilst he stir de fire roun':&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i0">"De ice would melt, my brother, 'fo' it ever hit de groun'!"<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">Den he fill a cup wid brimstone&mdash;fill it steamin' ter de top;<br /></span> <span class="i0">But de rich man say he swear off, dat he never tech a drop!<br /></span> <span class="i0">But Satan grab his pitchfork whilst de rich man give a squall,<br /></span> <span class="i0">En in 'bout a half a second he had swallered cup en all!<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">Now, dat's erbout de story er de rich man at de feas',<br /></span> <span class="i0">What wouldn't pass de 'possum roun' when Laz'rus want a piece.<br /></span> <span class="i0">De 'possum means yo' pocketbook, de moral's plain ez day:<br /></span> <span class="i0">Shake de dollars in de basket 'fo' you go de rich man's way!<br /></span> <span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_229" id="Page_229">[Pg 229]</SPAN></span></div></div> <hr style="width: 65%;" /> <h2>THE TWO SUITORS</h2> <h3>BY CAROLYN WELLS</h3> <p>Once on a Time there was a Charming Young Maiden who had Two Suitors.</p> <p>One of These, who was of a Persistent and Persevering Nature, managed to be Continually in the Young Lady's Company.</p> <p>He would pay her a visit in the Morning, Drop In to Tea in the Afternoon, and Call on her Again in the Evening.</p> <p>He took her Driving, and he Escorted her to the Theater. He would take her to a Party, and then he would Dance, or Sit on the Stairs, or Flit into the Conservatory with her.</p> <p>The Young Lady admired this man but she Wearied of his never-ceasing Presence, and she Said to Herself, "If he were not Always at my Elbow I should Better Appreciate his Good Qualities."</p> <p>The Other Suitor, who considered himself a Man of Deep and Penetrating Cleverness, said to himself, "I will Go Away for a Time, and then my Fair One will Realize my Worth and Call Me Back to Her."</p> <p>With a sad Visage he made his Adieus, and he Exacted her Pledge to Write to him Occasionally. But after he had Gone she Forgot her Promise, and Soon she Forgot his Very Existence.</p> <h3>MORALS:</h3> <p>This Fable teaches that Absence Makes the Heart Grow Fonder, and that Out of Sight is Out of Mind.<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_230" id="Page_230">[Pg 230]</SPAN></span></p> <hr style="width: 65%;" /> <h2>THE RECRUIT</h2> <h3>BY ROBERT W. CHAMBERS</h3> <div class="poem"><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">Sez Corporal Madden to Private McFadden:<br /></span> <span class="i4">"Bedad, yer a bad 'un!<br /></span> <span class="i4">Now turn out yer toes!<br /></span> <span class="i4">Yer belt is unhookit,<br /></span> <span class="i4">Yer cap is on crookit,<br /></span> <span class="i4">Ye may not be dhrunk,<br /></span> <span class="i4">But, be jabers, ye look it!<br /></span> <span class="i6">Wan&mdash;two!<br /></span> <span class="i6">Wan&mdash;two!<br /></span> <span class="i0">Ye monkey-faced divil, I'll jolly ye through!<br /></span> <span class="i6">Wan&mdash;two!<br /></span> <span class="i6">Time! Mark!<br /></span> <span class="i0">Ye march like the aigle in Cintheral Parrk!"<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">Sez Corporal Madden to Private McFadden:<br /></span> <span class="i4">"A saint it ud sadden<br /></span> <span class="i4">To dhrill such a mug!<br /></span> <span class="i4">Eyes front! ye baboon, ye!<br /></span> <span class="i4">Chin up! ye gossoon, ye!<br /></span> <span class="i4">Ye've jaws like a goat&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i4">Halt! ye leather-lipped loon, ye!<br /></span> <span class="i6">Wan&mdash;two!<br /></span> <span class="i6">Wan&mdash;two!<br /></span> <span class="i0">Ye whiskered orang-outang, I'll fix you!<br /></span> <span class="i6">Wan&mdash;two!<br /></span> <span class="i6">Time! Mark!<br /></span> <span class="i0">Ye've eyes like a bat! can ye see in the dark?"</span><span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_231" id="Page_231">[Pg 231]</SPAN></span><br /> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">Sez Corporal Madden to Private McFadden:<br /></span> <span class="i4">"Yer figger wants padd'n&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i4">Sure, man, ye've no shape!<br /></span> <span class="i4">Behind ye yer shoulders<br /></span> <span class="i4">Stick out like two bowlders;<br /></span> <span class="i4">Yer shins is as thin<br /></span> <span class="i4">As a pair of pen-holders!<br /></span> <span class="i6">Wan&mdash;two!<br /></span> <span class="i6">Wan&mdash;two!<br /></span> <span class="i0">Yer belly belongs on yer back, ye Jew!<br /></span> <span class="i6">Wan&mdash;two!<br /></span> <span class="i6">Time! Mark!<br /></span> <span class="i0">I'm dhry as a dog&mdash;I can't shpake but I bark!"<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">Sez Corporal Madden to Private McFadden:<br /></span> <span class="i4">"Me heart it ud gladden<br /></span> <span class="i4">To blacken yer eye.<br /></span> <span class="i4">Ye're gettin' too bold, ye<br /></span> <span class="i4">Compel me to scold ye&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i4">'T is halt! that I say&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i4">Will ye heed what I told ye?<br /></span> <span class="i6">Wan&mdash;two<br /></span> <span class="i6">Wan&mdash;two!<br /></span> <span class="i0">Be jabers, I'm dhryer than Brian Boru!<br /></span> <span class="i6">Wan&mdash;two!<br /></span> <span class="i6">Time! Mark!<br /></span> <span class="i0">What's wur-ruk for chickens is sport for the lark!"<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">Sez Corporal Madden to Private McFadden:<br /></span> <span class="i4">"I'll not stay a gadd'n<br /></span> <span class="i4">Wid dagoes like you!<br /></span> <span class="i4">I'll travel no farther,<br /></span> <span class="i4">I'm dyin' for&mdash;wather;<br /></span> <span class="i4">Come on, if ye like&mdash;</span><span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_232" id="Page_232">[Pg 232]</SPAN></span><br /> <span class="i4">Can ye loan me a quarther?<br /></span> <span class="i6">Ya-as, you,<br /></span> <span class="i6">What&mdash;two?<br /></span> <span class="i0">And ye'll pay the potheen? Ye're a daisy!<br /></span> <span class="i8">Whurroo!<br /></span> <span class="i6">You'll do!<br /></span> <span class="i6">Whist! Mark!<br /></span> <span class="i0">The Rigiment's flatthered to own ye, me spark!"<br /></span> </div></div> <hr style="width: 65%;" /> <h2>THE BEECHER BEACHED</h2> <h3>BY JOHN B. TABB</h3> <div class="poem"><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">Were Harriet Beecher well aware<br /></span> <span class="i0">Of what was done in Delaware,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Of that unwholesome smell aware,<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">She'd make all heaven and hell aware,<br /></span> <span class="i0">And ask John Brown to tell her where<br /></span> <span class="i0">Henceforth she best might sell her ware.<br /></span> <span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_233" id="Page_233">[Pg 233]</SPAN></span></div></div> <hr style="width: 65%;" /> <h2>OUR BEST SOCIETY</h2> <h3>BY GEORGE WILLIAM CURTIS</h3> <p>If gilt were only gold, or sugar-candy common sense, what a fine thing our society would be! If to lavish money upon <i>objets de vertu</i>, to wear the most costly dresses, and always to have them cut in the height of the fashion; to build houses thirty feet broad, as if they were palaces; to furnish them with all the luxurious devices of Parisian genius; to give superb banquets, at which your guests laugh, and which make you miserable; to drive a fine carriage and ape European liveries, and crests, and coats-of-arms; to resent the friendly advances of your baker's wife, and the lady of your butcher (you being yourself a cobbler's daughter); to talk much of the "old families" and of your aristocratic foreign friends; to despise labor; to prate of "good society"; to travesty and parody, in every conceivable way, a society which we know only in books and by the superficial observation of foreign travel, which arises out of a social organization entirely unknown to us, and which is opposed to our fundamental and essential principles; if all this were fine, what a prodigiously fine society would ours be!</p> <p>This occurred to us upon lately receiving a card of invitation to a brilliant ball. We were quietly ruminating over our evening fire, with Disraeli's Wellington speech, "all tears," in our hands, with the account of a great man's burial, and a little man's triumph across the channel. So many great men gone, we mused, and such great<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_234" id="Page_234">[Pg 234]</SPAN></span> crises impending! This democratic movement in Europe; Kossuth and Mazzini waiting for the moment to give the word; the Russian bear watchfully sucking his paws; the Napoleonic empire redivivus; Cuba, and annexation, and Slavery; California and Australia, and the consequent considerations of political economy; dear me! exclaimed we, putting on a fresh hodful of coal, we must look a little into the state of parties.</p> <p>As we put down the coal-scuttle, there was a knock at the door. We said, "come in," and in came a neat Alhambra-watered envelope, containing the announcement that the queen of fashion was "at home" that evening week. Later in the evening, came a friend to smoke a cigar. The card was lying upon the table, and he read it with eagerness. "You'll go, of course," said he, "for you will meet all the 'best society.'"</p> <p>Shall we, truly? Shall we really see the "best society of the city," the picked flower of its genius, character and beauty? What makes the "best society" of men and women? The noblest specimens of each, of course. The men who mould the time, who refresh our faith in heroism and virtue, who make Plato, and Zeno, and Shakespeare, and all Shakespeare's gentlemen, possible again. The women, whose beauty, and sweetness, and dignity, and high accomplishment, and grace, make us understand the Greek mythology, and weaken our desire to have some glimpse of the most famous women of history. The "best society" is that in which the virtues are most shining, which is the most charitable, forgiving, long-suffering, modest, and innocent. The "best society" is, by its very name, that in which there is the least hypocrisy and insincerity of all kinds, which recoils from, and blasts, artificiality, which is anxious to be all that it is possible to be, and which sternly reprobates all shallow pretense, all<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_235" id="Page_235">[Pg 235]</SPAN></span> coxcombry and foppery, and insists upon simplicity as the infallible characteristic of true worth. That is the "best society," which comprises the best men and women.</p> <p>Had we recently arrived from the moon, we might, upon hearing that we were to meet the "best society," have fancied that we were about to enjoy an opportunity not to be overvalued. But unfortunately we were not so freshly arrived. We had received other cards, and had perfected our toilette many times, to meet this same society, so magnificently described, and had found it the least "best" of all. Who compose it? Whom shall we meet if we go to this ball? We shall meet three classes of persons: first, those who are rich, and who have all that money can buy; second, those who belong to what are technically called "the good old families," because some ancestor was a man of mark in the state or country, or was very rich, and has kept the fortune in the family; and, thirdly, a swarm of youths who can dance dexterously, and who are invited for that purpose. Now these are all arbitrary and factitious distinctions upon which to found so profound a social difference as that which exists in American, or, at least in New York, society. First, as a general rule, the rich men of every community, who make their own money, are not the most generally intelligent and cultivated. They have a shrewd talent which secures a fortune, and which keeps them closely at the work of amassing from their youngest years until they are old. They are sturdy men, of simple tastes often. Sometimes, though rarely, very generous, but necessarily with an altogether false and exaggerated idea of the importance of money. They are a rather rough, unsympathetic, and, perhaps, selfish class, who, themselves, despise purple and fine linen, and still prefer a cot-bed and a bare room, although they may be worth millions. But they are mar<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_236" id="Page_236">[Pg 236]</SPAN></span>ried to scheming, or ambitious, or disappointed women, whose life is a prolonged pageant, and they are dragged hither and thither in it, are bled of their golden blood, and forced into a position they do not covet and which they despise. Then there are the inheritors of wealth. How many of them inherit the valiant genius and hard frugality which built up their fortunes; how many acknowledge the stern and heavy responsibility of their opportunities how many refuse to dream their lives away in a Sybarite luxury; how many are smitten with the lofty ambition of achieving an enduring name by works of a permanent value; how many do not dwindle into dainty dilettanti, and dilute their manhood with factitious sentimentality instead of a hearty, human sympathy; how many are not satisfied with having the fastest horses and the "crackest" carriages, and an unlimited wardrobe, and a weak affectation and puerile imitation of foreign life?</p> <p>And who are these of our secondly, these "old families?" The spirit of our time and of our country knows no such thing, but the habitue of "society" hears constantly of "a good family." It means simply, the collective mass of children, grand-children, nephews, nieces, and descendants, of some man who deserved well of his country, and whom his country honors. But sad is the heritage of a great name! The son of Burke will inevitably be measured by Burke. The niece of Pope must show some superiority to other women (so to speak), or her equality is inferiority. The feeling of men attributes some magical charm to blood, and we look to see the daughter of Helen as fair as her mother, and the son of Shakespeare musical as his sire. If they are not so, if they are merely names, and common persons&mdash;if there is no Burke, nor Shakespeare, nor Washington, nor Bacon, in their words, or actions, or lives, then we must pity<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_237" id="Page_237">[Pg 237]</SPAN></span> them, and pass gently on, not upbraiding them, but regretting that it is one of the laws of greatness that it dwindles all things in its vicinity, which would otherwise show large enough. Nay, in our regard for the great man, we may even admit to a compassionate honor, as pensioners upon our charity, those who bear and transmit his name. But if these heirs should presume upon that fame, and claim any precedence of living men and women because their dead grandfather was a hero&mdash;they must be shown the door directly. We should dread to be born a Percy, or a Colonna, or a Bonaparte. We should not like to be the second Duke of Wellington, nor Charles Dickens, Jr. It is a terrible thing, one would say, to a mind of honorable feeling, to be pointed out as somebody's son, or uncle, or granddaughter, as if the excellence were all derived. It must be a little humiliating to reflect that if your great-uncle had not been somebody, you would be nobody&mdash;that, in fact, you are only a name, and that, if you should consent to change it for the sake of a fortune, as is sometimes done, you would cease to be anything but a rich man. "My father was President, or Governor of the State," some pompous man may say. But, by Jupiter! king of gods and men, what are <i>you</i>? is the instinctive response. Do you not see, our pompous friend, that you are only pointing your own unimportance? If your father was Governor of the State, what right have you to use that fact only to fatten your self-conceit? Take care, good care; for whether you say it by your lips or by your life, that withering response awaits you&mdash;"then what are <i>you</i>?" If your ancestor was great, you are under bonds to greatness. If you are small, make haste to learn it betimes, and, thanking heaven that your name has been made illustrious, retire into a corner and keep it, at least, untarnished.<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_238" id="Page_238">[Pg 238]</SPAN></span></p> <p>Our thirdly, is a class made by sundry French tailors, bootmakers, dancing-masters, and Mr. Brown. They are a corps-de-ballet, for use of private entertainments. They are fostered by society for the use of young debutantes, and hardier damsels, who have dared two or three years of the "tight" polka. They are cultivated for their heels, not their heads. Their life begins at ten o'clock in the evening, and lasts until four in the morning. They go home and sleep until nine; then they reel, sleepy, to counting-houses and offices, and doze on desks until dinnertime. Or, unable to do that, they are actively at work all day, and their cheeks grow pale, and their lips thin, and their eyes bloodshot and hollow, and they drag themselves home at evening to catch a nap until the ball begins, or to dine and smoke at their club, and the very manly with punches and coarse stories; and then to rush into hot and glittering rooms, and seize very <i>d&eacute;collet&eacute;</i> girls closely around the waist, and dash with them around an area of stretched linen, saying in the panting pauses, "How very hot it is!" "How very pretty Miss Podge looks!" "What a good redowa!" "Are you going to Mrs. Potiphar's?"</p> <p>Is this the assembled flower of manhood and womanhood, called "best society," and to see which is so envied a privilege? If such are the elements, can we be long in arriving at the present state, and necessary future condition of parties?</p> <p><i>Vanity Fair</i> is peculiarly a picture of modern society. It aims at English follies, but its mark is universal, as the madness is. It is called a satire, but, after much diligent reading, we can not discover the satire. A state of society not at all superior to that of <i>Vanity Fair</i> is not unknown to our experience; and, unless truth-telling be satire; unless the most tragically real portraiture be<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_239" id="Page_239">[Pg 239]</SPAN></span> satire; unless scalding tears of sorrow, and the bitter regret of a manly mind over the miserable spectacle of artificiality, wasted powers, misdirected energies, and lost opportunities, be satirical; we do not find satire in that sad story. The reader closes it with a grief beyond tears. It leaves a vague apprehension in the mind, as if we should suspect the air to be poisoned. It suggests the terrible thought of the enfeebling of moral power, and the deterioration of noble character, as a necessary consequence of contact with "society." Every man looks suddenly and sharply around him, and accosts himself and his neighbors, to ascertain if they are all parties to this corruption. Sentimental youths and maidens, upon velvet sofas, or in calf-bound libraries, resolve that it is an insult to human nature&mdash;are sure that their velvet and calf-bound friends are not like the <i>dramatis person&aelig;</i> of <i>Vanity Fair</i>, and that the drama is therefore hideous and unreal. They should remember, what they uniformly and universally forget, that we are not invited, upon the rising of the curtain, to behold a cosmorama, or picture of the world, but a representation of that part of it called Vanity Fair. What its just limits are&mdash;how far its poisonous purlieus reach&mdash;how much of the world's air is tainted by it, is a question which every thoughtful man will ask himself, with a shudder, and look sadly around, to answer. If the sentimental objectors rally again to the charge, and declare that, if we wish to improve the world, its virtuous ambition must be piqued and stimulated by making the shining heights of "the ideal" more radiant; we reply, that none shall surpass us in honoring the men whose creations of beauty inspire and instruct mankind. But if they benefit the world, it is no less true that a vivid apprehension of the depths into which we are sunken or may sink, nerves the soul's courage quite as much as the<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_240" id="Page_240">[Pg 240]</SPAN></span> alluring mirage of the happy heights we may attain. "To hold the mirror up to Nature," is still the most potent method of shaming sin and strengthening virtue.</p> <p>If <i>Vanity Fair</i> be a satire, what novel of society is not? Are <i>Vivian Grey</i>, and <i>Pelham</i>, and the long catalogue of books illustrating English, or the host of Balzacs, Sands, Sues, and Dumas, that paint French society, less satires? Nay, if you should catch any dandy in Broadway, or in Pall-Mall, or upon the Boulevards, this very morning, and write a coldly true history of his life and actions, his doings and undoings, would it not be the most scathing and tremendous satire?&mdash;if by satire you mean the consuming melancholy of the conviction that the life of that pendant to a mustache is an insult to the possible life of a man.</p> <p>We have read of a hypocrisy so thorough, that it was surprised you should think it hypocritical: and we have bitterly thought of the saying, when hearing one mother say of another mother's child, that she had "made a good match," because the girl was betrothed to a stupid boy whose father was rich. The remark was the key of our social feeling.</p> <p>Let us look at it a little, and, first of all, let the reader consider the criticism, and not the critic. We may like very well, in our individual capacity, to partake of the delicacies prepared by our hostess's <i>chef</i>, we may not be averse to <i>pat&eacute;</i> and myriad <i>objets de go&ucirc;t</i>, and if you caught us in a corner at the next ball, putting away a fair share of <i>dinde aux truffes</i>, we know you would have at us in a tone of great moral indignation, and wish to know why we sneaked into great houses, eating good suppers, and drinking choice wines, and then went away with an indigestion, to write dyspeptic disgusts at society.</p> <p>We might reply that it is necessary to know something<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_241" id="Page_241">[Pg 241]</SPAN></span> of a subject before writing about it, and that if a man wished to describe the habits of South Sea Islanders, it is useless to go to Greenland; we might also confess a partiality for <i>pat&eacute;</i>, and a tenderness for <i>truffes</i>, and acknowledge that, considering our single absence would not put down extravagant, pompous parties, we were not strong enough to let the morsels drop into unappreciating mouths; or we might say, that if a man invited us to see his new house, it would not be ungracious nor insulting to his hospitality, to point out whatever weak parts we might detect in it, nor to declare our candid conviction, that it was built upon wrong principles and could not stand. He might believe us, if we had been in the house, but he certainly would not, if we had never seen it. Nor would it be a very wise reply upon his part, that we might build a better if we didn't like that. We are not fond of David's pictures, but we certainly could never paint half so well; nor of Pope's poetry, but posterity will never hear of our verses. Criticism is not construction, it is observation. If we could surpass in its own way everything which displeased us, we should make short work of it, and instead of showing what fatal blemishes deform our present society, we should present a specimen of perfection, directly.</p> <p>We went to the brilliant ball. There was too much of everything. Too much light, and eating, and drinking, and dancing, and flirting, and dressing, and feigning, and smirking, and much too many people. Good taste insists first upon fitness. But why had Mrs. Potiphar given this ball? We inquired industriously, and learned it was because she did not give one last year. Is it then essential to do this thing biennially? inquired we with some trepidation. "Certainly," was the bland reply, "or society will forget you." Everybody was unhappy at Mrs. Potiphar's,<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_242" id="Page_242">[Pg 242]</SPAN></span> save a few girls and boys, who danced violently all the evening. Those who did not dance walked up and down the rooms as well as they could, squeezing by non-dancing ladies, causing them to swear in their hearts as the brusque broadcloth carried away the light outworks of gauze and gossamer. The dowagers, ranged in solid phalanx, occupied all the chairs and sofas against the wall, and fanned themselves until supper-time, looking at each other's diamonds, and criticizing the toilettes of the younger ladies, each narrowly watching her peculiar Polly Jane, that she did not betray too much interest in any man who was not of a certain fortune.&mdash;It is the cold, vulgar truth, madam, nor are we in the slightest degree exaggerating.&mdash;Elderly gentlemen, twisting single gloves in a very wretched manner, came up and bowed to the dowagers, and smirked, and said it was a pleasant party, and a handsome house, and then clutched their hands behind them, and walked miserably away, looking as affable as possible. And the dowagers made a little fun of the elderly gentlemen, among themselves, as they walked away.</p> <p>Then came the younger non-dancing men&mdash;a class of the community who wear black cravats and waistcoats, and thrust their thumbs and forefingers in their waistcoat-pockets, and are called "talking men." Some of them are literary, and affect the philosopher; have, perhaps, written a book or two, and are a small species of lion to very young ladies. Some are of the <i>blas&eacute;</i> kind; men who affect the extremest elegance, and are reputed "so aristocratic," and who care for nothing in particular, but wish they had not been born gentlemen, in which case they might have escaped ennui. These gentlemen stand with hat in hand, and their coats and trousers are unexceptionable. They are the "so gentlemanly" persons of whom one hears a<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_243" id="Page_243">[Pg 243]</SPAN></span> great deal, but which seems to mean nothing but cleanliness. Vivian Grey and Pelham are the models of their ambition, and they succeed in being Pendennis. They enjoy the reputation of being "very clever," and "very talented fellows," and "smart chaps"; but they refrain from proving what is so generously conceded. They are often men of a certain cultivation. They have traveled, many of them&mdash;spending a year or two in Paris, and a month or two in the rest of Europe. Consequently they endure society at home, with a smile, and a shrug, and a graceful superciliousness, which is very engaging. They are perfectly at home, and they rather despise Young America, which, in the next room, is diligently earning its invitation. They prefer to hover about the ladies who did not come out this season, but are a little used to the world, with whom they are upon most friendly terms, and they criticize together, very freely, all the great events in the great world of fashion.</p> <p>These elegant Pendennises we saw at Mrs. Potiphar's, but not without a sadness which can hardly be explained. They had been boys once, all of them, fresh and frank-hearted, and full of a noble ambition. They had read and pondered the histories of great men; how they resolved, and struggled, and achieved. In the pure portraiture of genius, they had loved and honored noble women, and each young heart was sworn to truth and the service of beauty. Those feelings were chivalric and fair. Those boyish instincts clung to whatever was lovely, and rejected the specious snare, however graceful and elegant. They sailed, new knights, upon that old and endless crusade against hypocrisy and the devil, and they were lost in the luxury of Corinth, nor longer seek the difficult shores beyond. A present smile was worth a future laurel. The ease of the moment was worth immortal<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_244" id="Page_244">[Pg 244]</SPAN></span> tranquillity. They renounced the stern worship of the unknown God, and acknowledged the deities of Athens. But the seal of their shame is their own smile at their early dreams, and the high hopes of their boyhood, their sneering infidelity of simplicity, their skepticism of motives and of men. Youths, whose younger years were fervid with the resolution to strike and win, to deserve, at least, a gentle remembrance, if not a dazzling fame, are content to eat, and drink, and sleep well; to go to the opera and all the balls; to be known as "gentlemanly," and "aristocratic," and "dangerous," and "elegant"; to cherish a luxurious and enervating indolence, and to "succeed," upon the cheap reputation of having been "fast" in Paris. The end of such men is evident enough from the beginning. They are snuffed out by a "great match," and become an appendage to a rich woman; or they dwindle off into old <i>rou&eacute;s</i>, men of the world in sad earnest, and not with elegant affectation, <i>blas&eacute;</i>; and as they began Arthur Pendennises, so they end the Major. But, believe it, that old fossil heart is wrung sometimes by a mortal pang, as it remembers those squandered opportunities and that lost life.</p> <p>From these groups we passed into the dancing-room. We have seen dancing in other countries, and dressing. We have certainly never seen gentlemen dance so easily, gracefully, and well, as the American. But the <i>style</i> of dancing, in its whirl, its rush, its fury, is only equaled by that of the masked balls at the French opera, and the balls at the <i>Salle Valentino</i>, the <i>Jardin Mabille</i>, the <i>Ch&acirc;teau R&ocirc;uge</i>, and other favorite resorts of Parisian grisettes and lorettes. We saw a few young men looking upon the dance very soberly, and, upon inquiry, learned that they were engaged to certain ladies of the corps-de-ballet. Nor did we wonder that the spectacle of a young woman<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_245" id="Page_245">[Pg 245]</SPAN></span> whirling in a <i>d&eacute;collet&eacute;</i> state, and in the embrace of a warm youth, around a heated room, induced a little sobriety upon her lover's face, if not a sadness in his heart. Amusement, recreation, enjoyment! There are no more beautiful things. But this proceeding falls under another head. We watched the various toilettes of these bounding belles. They were rich and tasteful. But a man at our elbow, of experience and shrewd observation, said, with a sneer, for which we called him to account, "I observe that American ladies are so rich in charms that they are not at all chary of them. It is certainly generous to us miserable black coats. But, do you know, it strikes me as a generosity of display that must necessarily leave the donor poorer in maidenly feeling." We thought ourselves cynical, but this was intolerable; and in a very crisp manner we demanded an apology.</p> <p>"Why," responded our friend with more of sadness than of satire in his tone, "why are you so exasperated? Look at this scene! Consider that this is, really, the life of these girls. This is what they 'come out' for. This is the end of their ambition. They think of it, dream of it, long for it. Is it amusement? Yes, to a few, possibly. But listen and gather, if you can, from their remarks (when they make any), that they have any thought beyond this, and going to church very rigidly on Sunday. The vigor of polkaing and church-going are proportioned; as is the one so is the other. My young friend, I am no ascetic, and do not suppose a man is damned because he dances. But life is not a ball (more's the pity, truly, for these butterflies), nor is its sole duty and delight dancing. When I consider this spectacle&mdash;when I remember what a noble and beautiful woman is, what a manly man,&mdash;when I reel, dazzled by this glare, drunken by these perfumes, confused by this alluring music, and reflect<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_246" id="Page_246">[Pg 246]</SPAN></span> upon the enormous sums wasted in a pompous profusion that delights no one&mdash;when I look around upon all this rampant vulgarity in tinsel and Brussels lace, and think how fortunes go, how men struggle and lose the bloom of their honesty, how women hide in a smiling pretense, and eye with caustic glances their neighbor's newer house, diamonds or porcelain, and observe their daughters, such as these&mdash;why, I tremble, and tremble, and this scene to-night, every 'crack' ball this winter, will be, not the pleasant society of men and women, but&mdash;even in this young country&mdash;an orgie such as rotting Corinth saw, a frenzied festival of Rome in its decadence."</p> <p>There was a sober truth in this bitterness, and we turned away to escape the sombre thought of the moment. Addressing one of the panting houris who stood melting in a window, we spoke (and confess how absurdly) of the D&uuml;sseldorf Gallery. It was merely to avoid saying how warm the room was, and how pleasant the party was, facts upon which we had already enlarged. "Yes, they are pretty pictures; but la! how long it must have taken Mr. D&uuml;sseldorf to paint them all;" was the reply.</p> <p>By the Farnesian Hercules! no Roman sylph in her city's decline would ever have called the sun-god, Mr. Apollo. We hope that houri melted entirely away in the window; but we certainly did not stay to see.</p> <p>Passing out toward the supper-room we encountered two young men. "What, Hal," said one, "<i>you</i> at Mrs. Potiphar's?" It seems that Hal was a sprig of one of the "old families." "Well, Joe," said Hal, a little confused, "it <i>is</i> a little strange. The fact is I didn't mean to be here, but I concluded to compromise by coming, <i>and not being introduced to the host</i>." Hal could come, eat Potiphar's supper, drink his wines, spoil his carpets, laugh at his fashionable struggles, and affect the puppyism of a for<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_247" id="Page_247">[Pg 247]</SPAN></span>eign lord, because he disgraced the name of a man who had done some service somewhere, while Potiphar was only an honest man who made a fortune.</p> <p>The supper-room was a pleasant place. The table was covered with a chaos of supper. Everything sweet and rare, and hot and cold, solid and liquid, was there. It was the very apotheosis of gilt gingerbread. There was a universal rush and struggle. The charge of the guards at Waterloo was nothing to it. Jellies, custard, oyster-soup, ice-cream, wine and water, gushed in profuse cascades over transparent precipices of <i>tulle</i>, muslin, gauze, silk and satin. Clumsy boys tumbled against costly dresses and smeared them with preserves; when clean plates failed, the contents of plates already used were quietly "chucked" under the table&mdash;heel-taps of champagne were poured into the oyster tureens or overflowed upon plates to clear the glasses&mdash;wine of all kinds flowed in torrents, particularly down the throats of very young men, who evinced their manhood by becoming noisy, troublesome, and disgusting, and were finally either led, sick, into the hat room, or carried out of the way, drunk. The supper over, the young people, attended by their matrons, descended to the dancing-room for the "German." This is a dance commencing usually at midnight or a little after, and continuing indefinitely toward daybreak. The young people were attended by their matrons, who were there to supervise the morals and manners of their charges. To secure the performance of this duty, the young people took good care to sit where the matrons could not see them, nor did they, by any chance, look toward the quarter in which the matrons sat. In that quarter, through all the varying mazes of the prolonged dance, to two o'clock, to three, to four, sat the bediamonded dowagers, the mothers, the matrons<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_248" id="Page_248">[Pg 248]</SPAN></span>&mdash;against nature, against common sense. They babbled with each other, they drowsed, they dozed. Their fans fell listless into their laps. In the adjoining room, out of the waking sight, even, of the then sleeping mamas, the daughters whirled in the close embrace of partners who had brought down bottles of champagne from the supper-room, and put them by the side of their chairs for occasional refreshment during the dance. The dizzy hours staggered by&mdash;"Azalia, you <i>must</i> come now," had been already said a dozen times, but only as by the scribes. Finally it was declared with authority. Azalia went&mdash;Amelia&mdash;Arabella. The rest followed. There was prolonged cloaking, there were lingering farewells. A few papas were in the supper-room, sitting among the <i>d&eacute;bris</i> of game. A few young non-dancing husbands sat beneath gas unnaturally bright, reading whatever chance book was at hand, and thinking of the young child at home waiting for mama who was dancing the "German" below. A few exhausted matrons sat in the robing-room, tired, sad, wishing Jane would come up; assailed at intervals by a vague suspicion that it was not quite worth while; wondering how it was they used to have such good times at balls; yawning, and looking at their watches; while the regular beat of the music below, with sardonic sadness, continued. At last Jane came up, had had the most glorious time, and went down with mamma to the carriage, and so drove home. Even the last Jane went&mdash;the last noisy youth was expelled&mdash;and Mr. and Mrs. Potiphar, having duly performed their biennial social duty, dismissed the music, ordered the servants to count the spoons, and an hour or two after daylight went to bed. Enviable Mr. and Mrs. Potiphar!</p> <p>We are now prepared for the great moral indignation of the friend who saw us eating our <i>dinde aux truffes</i> in<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_249" id="Page_249">[Pg 249]</SPAN></span> that remarkable supper-room. We are waiting to hear him say in the most moderate and "gentlemanly" manner, that it is all very well to select flaws and present them as specimens, and to learn from him, possibly with indignant publicity, that the present condition of parties is not what we have intimated. Or, in his quiet and pointed way, he may smile at our fiery assault upon edged flounces, and nuga pyramids, and the kingdom of Lilliput in general.</p> <p>Yet, after all, and despite the youths who are led out, and carried home, or who stumble through the "German," this is a sober matter. My friend told us we should see the "best society." But he is a prodigious wag. Who make this country? From whom is its character of unparalleled enterprise, heroism, and success derived? Who have given it its place in the respect and the fear of the world? Who, annually, recruit its energies, confirm its progress, and secure its triumph? Who are its characteristic children, the pith, the sinew, the bone, of its prosperity? Who found, and direct, and continue its manifold institutions of mercy and education? Who are, essentially, Americans? Indignant friend, these classes, whoever they may be, are the "best society," because they alone are the representatives of its character and cultivation. They are the "best society" of New York, of Boston, of Baltimore, of St. Louis, of New Orleans, whether they live upon six hundred or sixty thousand dollars a year&mdash;whether they inhabit princely houses in fashionable streets (which they often do), or not&mdash;whether their sons have graduated at Celarius's and the <i>Jardin Mabille</i>, or have never been out of their father's shops&mdash;whether they have "air" and "style," and are "so gentlemanly" and "so aristocratic," or not. Your shoemaker, your lawyer, your butcher, your clergyman&mdash;if<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_250" id="Page_250">[Pg 250]</SPAN></span> they are simple and steady, and, whether rich or poor, are unseduced by the sirens of extravagance and ruinous display, help make up the "best society." For that mystic communion is not composed of the rich, but of the worthy; and is "best" by its virtues, and not by its vices. When Johnson, Burke, Goldsmith, Garrick, Reynolds, and their friends, met at supper in Goldsmith's rooms, where was the "best society" in England? When George the Fourth outraged humanity in his treatment of Queen Caroline, who was the first scoundrel in Europe?</p> <p>Pause yet a moment, indignant friend. Whose habits and principles would ruin this country as rapidly as it has been made? Who are enamored of a puerile imitation of foreign splendors? Who strenuously endeavor to graft the questionable points of Parisian society upon our own? Who pass a few years in Europe and return skeptical of republicanism and human improvement, longing and sighing for more sharply emphasized social distinctions? Who squander, with profuse recklessness, the hard-earned fortunes of their sires? Who diligently devote their time to nothing, foolishly and wrongly supposing that a young English nobleman has nothing to do? Who, in fine, evince by their collective conduct, that they regard their Americanism as a misfortune, and are so the most deadly enemies of their country? None but what our wag facetiously termed "the best society."</p> <p>If the reader doubts, let him consider its practical results in any great emporiums of "best society." Marriage is there regarded as a luxury, too expensive for any but the sons of rich men, or fortunate young men. We once heard an eminent divine assert, and only half in sport, that the rate of living was advancing so incredibly, that weddings in his experience were perceptibly diminishing. The reasons might have been many and various. But we<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_251" id="Page_251">[Pg 251]</SPAN></span> all acknowledge the fact. On the other hand, and about the same time, a lovely damsel (ah! Clorinda!) whose father was not wealthy, who had no prospective means of support, who could do nothing but polka to perfection, who literally knew almost nothing, and who constantly shocked every fairly intelligent person by the glaring ignorance betrayed in her remarks, informed a friend at one of the Saratoga balls, whither he had made haste to meet "the best society," that there were "not more than three good matches in society." <i>La Dame aux Cam&eacute;lias</i>, Marie Duplessis, was to our fancy a much more feminine, and admirable, and moral, and human person, than the adored Clorinda. And yet what she said was the legitimate result of the state of our fashionable society. It worships wealth, and the pomp which wealth can purchase, more than virtue, genius or beauty. We may be told that it has always been so in every country, and that the fine society of all lands is as profuse and flashy as our own. We deny it, flatly. Neither English, nor French, nor Italian, nor German society, is so unspeakably barren as that which is technically called "society" here. In London, and Paris, and Vienna, and Rome, all the really eminent men and women help make up the mass of society. A party is not a mere ball, but it is a congress of the wit, beauty, and fame of the capital. It is worth while to dress, if you shall meet Macaulay, or Hallam, or Guizot, or Thiers, or Landseer, or Delaroche&mdash;Mrs. Norton, the Misses Berry, Madame Recamier, and all the brilliant women and famous foreigners. But why should we desert the pleasant pages of those men, and the recorded gossip of those women, to be squeezed flat against a wall, while young Doughface pours oyster-gravy down our shirt-front, and Caroline Pettitoes wonders at "Mr. D&uuml;sseldorf's" industry?<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_252" id="Page_252">[Pg 252]</SPAN></span></p> <p>If intelligent people decline to go, you justly remark, it is their own fault. Yes, but if they stay away, it is very certainly their great gain. The elderly people are always neglected with us, and nothing surprises intelligent strangers more than the tyrannical supremacy of Young America. But we are not surprised at this neglect. How can we be, if we have our eyes open? When Caroline Pettitoes retreats from the floor to the sofa, and, instead of a "polker," figures at parties as a matron, do you suppose that "tough old Joes" like ourselves are going to desert the young Caroline upon the floor, for Madame Pettitoes upon the sofa? If the pretty young Caroline, with youth, health, freshness, a fine, budding form, and wreathed in a semi-transparent haze of flounced and flowered gauze, is so vapid that we prefer to accost her with our eyes alone, and not with our tongues, is the same Caroline married into a Madame Pettitoes, and fanning herself upon a sofa&mdash;no longer particularly fresh, nor young, nor pretty, and no longer budding, but very fully blown&mdash;likely to be fascinating in conversation? We can not wonder that the whole connection of Pettitoes, when advanced to the matron state, is entirely neglected. Proper homage to age we can all pay at home, to our parents and grandparents. Proper respect for some persons is best preserved by avoiding their neighborhood.</p> <p>And what, think you, is the influence of this extravagant expense and senseless show upon these same young men and women? We can easily discover. It saps their noble ambition, assails their health, lowers their estimate of men, and their reverence for women, cherishes an eager and aimless rivalry, weakens true feeling, wipes away the bloom of true modesty, and induces an ennui, a satiety, and a kind of dilettante misanthropy, which is only the more monstrous because it is undoubtedly real. You shall<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_253" id="Page_253">[Pg 253]</SPAN></span> hear young men of intelligence and cultivation, to whom the unprecedented circumstances of this country offer opportunities of a great and beneficent career, complaining that they were born within this blighted circle; regretting that they were not bakers and tallow-chandlers, and under no obligation to keep up appearances; deliberately surrendering all the golden possibilities of that future which this country, beyond all others, holds before them; sighing that they are not rich enough to marry the girls they love, and bitterly upbraiding fortune that they are not millionaires; suffering the vigor of their years to exhale in idle wishes and pointless regrets; disgracing their manhood by lying in wait behind their "so gentlemanly" and "aristocratic" manners, until they can pounce upon a "fortune" and ensnare an heiress into matrimony: and so, having dragged their gifts&mdash;their horses of the sun&mdash;into a service which shames all their native pride and power, they sink in the mire; and their peers and emulators exclaim that they have "made a good thing of it."</p> <p>Are these the processes by which a noble race is made and perpetuated? At Mrs. Potiphar's we heard several Pendennises longing for a similar luxury, and announcing their firm purpose never to have wives nor houses until they could have them as splendid as jewelled Mrs. Potiphar, and her palace, thirty feet front. Where were their heads, and their hearts, and their arms? How looks this craven despondency, before the stern virtues of the ages we call dark? When a man is so voluntarily imbecile as to regret he is not rich, if that is what he wants, before he has struck a blow for wealth; or so dastardly as to renounce the prospect of love, because, sitting sighing, in velvet dressing-gown and slippers, he does not see his way clear to ten thousand a year: when young women coiffed <i>&agrave; merveille</i>, of unexceptionable "style," who, with<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_254" id="Page_254">[Pg 254]</SPAN></span> or without a prospective penny, secretly look down upon honest women who struggle for a livelihood, like noble and Christian beings, and, as such, are rewarded; in whose society a man must forget that he has ever read, thought, or felt; who destroy in the mind the fair ideal of woman, which the genius of art, and poetry, and love, their inspirer has created; then, it seems to us, it is high time that the subject should be regarded, not as a matter of breaking butterflies upon the wheel, but as a sad and sober question, in whose solution, all fathers and mothers, and the state itself, are interested. When keen observers, and men of the world, from Europe, are amazed and appalled at the giddy whirl and frenzied rush of our society&mdash;a society singular in history for the exaggerated prominence it assigns to wealth, irrespective of the talents that amassed it, they and their possessor being usually hustled out of sight&mdash;is it not quite time to ponder a little upon the Court of Louis XIV, and the "merrie days" of King Charles II? Is it not clear that, if what our good wag, with caustic irony, called "best society," were really such, every thoughtful man would read upon Mrs. Potiphar's softly-tinted walls the terrible "mene, mene" of an imminent destruction?</p> <p>Venice in her purple prime of luxury, when the famous law was passed making all gondolas black, that the nobles should not squander fortunes upon them, was not more luxurious than New York to-day. Our hotels have a superficial splendor, derived from a profusion of gilt and paint, wood and damask. Yet, in not one of them can the traveler be so quietly comfortable as in an English inn, and nowhere in New York can the stranger procure a dinner, at once so neat and elegant, and economical, as at scores of caf&eacute;s in Paris. The fever of display has consumed comfort. A gondola plated with gold was no<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_255" id="Page_255">[Pg 255]</SPAN></span> easier than a black wooden one. We could well spare a little gilt upon the walls, for more cleanliness upon the public table; nor is it worth while to cover the walls with mirrors to reflect a want of comfort. One prefers a wooden bench to a greasy velvet cushion, and a sanded floor to a soiled and threadbare carpet. An insipid uniformity is the Procrustes-bed, upon which "society" is stretched. Every new house is the counterpart of every other, with the exception of more gilt, if the owner can afford it. The interior arrangement, instead of being characteristic, instead of revealing something of the tastes and feelings of the owner, is rigorously conformed to every other interior. The same hollow and tame complaisance rules in the intercourse of society. Who dares say precisely what he thinks upon a great topic? What youth ventures to say sharp things, of slavery, for instance, at a polite dinner-table? What girl dares wear curls, when Martelle prescribes puffs or bandeaux? What specimen of Young America dares have his trousers loose or wear straps to them? We want individuality, heroism, and, if necessary, an uncompromising persistence in difference.</p> <p>This is the present state of parties. They are wildly extravagant, full of senseless display; they are avoided by the pleasant and intelligent, and swarm with reckless regiments of "Brown's men." The ends of the earth contribute their choicest products to the supper, and there is everything that wealth can purchase, and all the spacious splendor that thirty feet front can afford. They are hot, and crowded, and glaring. There is a little weak scandal, venomous, not witty, and a stream of weary platitude, mortifying to every sensible person. Will any of our Pendennis friends intermit their indignation for a moment, and consider how many good things they have<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_256" id="Page_256">[Pg 256]</SPAN></span> said or heard during the season? If Mr. Potiphar's eyes should chance to fall here, will he reckon the amount of satisfaction and enjoyment he derived from Mrs. Potiphar's ball, and will that lady candidly confess what she gained from it beside weariness and disgust? What eloquent sermons we remember to have heard in which the sins and the sinners of Babylon, Jericho and Gomorrah were scathed with holy indignation. The cloth is very hard upon Cain, and completely routs the erring kings of Judah. The Spanish Inquisition, too, gets frightful knocks, and there is much eloquent exhortation to preach the gospel in the interior of Siam. Let it be preached there and God speed the Word. But also let us have a text or two in Broadway and the Avenue.</p> <p>The best sermon ever preached upon society, within our knowledge, is <i>Vanity Fair</i>. Is the spirit of that story less true of New York than of London? Probably we never see Amelia at our parties, nor Lieutenant George Osborne, nor good gawky Dobbin, nor Mrs. Rebecca Sharp Crawley, nor old Steyne. We are very much pained, of course, that any author should take such dreary views of human nature. We, for our parts, all go to Mrs. Potiphar's to refresh our faith in men and women. Generosity, amiability, a catholic charity, simplicity, taste, sense, high cultivation, and intelligence, distinguish our parties. The statesman seeks their stimulating influence; the literary man, after the day's labor, desires the repose of their elegant conversation; the professional man and the merchant hurry up from down town to shuffle off the coil of heavy duty, and forget the drudgery of life in the agreeable picture of its amenities and graces presented by Mrs. Potiphar's ball. Is this account of the matter, or <i>Vanity Fair</i>, the satire? What are the prospects of any society of which that tale is the true history?<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_257" id="Page_257">[Pg 257]</SPAN></span></p> <p>There is a picture in the Luxembourg gallery at Paris, <i>The Decadence of the Romans</i>, which made the fame and fortune of Couture, the painter. It represents an orgie in the court of a temple, during the last days of Rome. A swarm of revellers occupy the middle of the picture, wreathed in elaborate intricacy of luxurious posture, men and women intermingled; their faces, in which the old Roman fire scarcely flickers, brutalized with excess of every kind; their heads of dishevelled hair bound with coronals of leaves, while, from goblets of an antique grace, they drain the fiery torrent which is destroying them. Around the bacchanalian feast stand, lofty upon pedestals, the statues of old Rome, looking, with marble calmness and the severity of a rebuke beyond words, upon the revellers. A youth of boyish grace, with a wreath woven in his tangled hair, and with red and drowsy eyes, sits listless upon one pedestal, while upon another stands a boy insane with drunkenness, and proffering a dripping goblet to the marble mouth of the statue. In the corner of the picture, as if just quitting the court&mdash;Rome finally departing&mdash;is a group of Romans with care-worn brows, and hands raised to their faces in melancholy meditation. In the foreground of the picture, which is painted with all the sumptuous splendor of Venetian art, is a stately vase, around which hangs a festoon of gorgeous flowers, its end dragging upon the pavement. In the background, between the columns, smiles the blue sky of Italy&mdash;the only thing Italian not deteriorated by time. The careful student of this picture, if he have been long in Paris, is some day startled by detecting, especially in the faces of the women represented, a surprising likeness to the women of Paris, and perceives, with a thrill of dismay, that the models for this picture of decadent human nature are furnished by the very city in which he lives.<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_258" id="Page_258">[Pg 258]</SPAN></span></p> <hr style="width: 65%;" /> <h2>THE TWO FARMERS</h2> <h3>BY CAROLYN WELLS</h3> <p>Once on a Time there were Two Farmers who wished to Sell their Farms.</p> <p>To One came a Buyer who offered a Fair Price, but the Farmer refused to Sell, saying he had heard rumors of a Railroad which was to be Built in his Vicinity, and he hoped The Corporation would buy his Farm at a Large Figure.</p> <p>The Buyer therefore went Away, and as the Railroad never Materialized, the Farmer Sorely Regretted that he lost a Good Chance.</p> <p>The Other Farmer Sold his Farm to the First Customer who came Along, although he Received but a Small Price for it. Soon Afterward a Railroad was Built right through the Same Farm, and The Railroad Company paid an Enormous Sum for the Land.</p> <h3>MORALS:</h3> <p>This Fable teaches that a Bird In The Hand is worth Two In The Bush, and The Patient Waiter Is No Loser.<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_259" id="Page_259">[Pg 259]</SPAN></span></p> <hr style="width: 65%;" /> <h2>SAMUEL BROWN</h2> <h3>BY PH&OElig;BE CARY</h3> <div class="poem"><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">It was many and many a year ago,<br /></span> <span class="i2">In a dwelling down in town,<br /></span> <span class="i0">That a fellow there lived whom you may know,<br /></span> <span class="i2">By the name of Samuel Brown;<br /></span> <span class="i0">And this fellow he lived with no other thought<br /></span> <span class="i2">Than to our house to come down.<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">I was a child, and he was a child,<br /></span> <span class="i2">In that dwelling down in town,<br /></span> <span class="i0">But we loved with a love that was more than love,<br /></span> <span class="i2">I and my Samuel Brown,&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i0">With a love that the ladies coveted,<br /></span> <span class="i2">Me and Samuel Brown.<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">And this was the reason that, long ago,<br /></span> <span class="i2">To that dwelling down in town,<br /></span> <span class="i0">A girl came out of her carriage, courting<br /></span> <span class="i2">My beautiful Samuel Brown;<br /></span> <span class="i0">So that her high-bred kinsmen came,<br /></span> <span class="i2">And bore away Samuel Brown,<br /></span> <span class="i0">And shut him up in a dwelling house,<br /></span> <span class="i2">In a street quite up in town.<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">The ladies, not half so happy up there,<br /></span> <span class="i2">Went envying me and Brown;<br /></span> <span class="i0">Yes! that was the reason (as all men know,<br /></span> <span class="i2">In this dwelling down in town),<br /></span> <span class="i0">That the girl came out of the carriage by night,<br /></span> <span class="i2">Coquetting and getting my Samuel Brown.</span><span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_260" id="Page_260">[Pg 260]</SPAN></span><br /> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">But our love is more artful by far than the love<br /></span> <span class="i2">If those who are older than we,&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i2">Of many far wiser than we,&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i0">And neither the girls that are living above,<br /></span> <span class="i2">Nor the girls that are down in town,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Can ever dissever my soul from the soul<br /></span> <span class="i2">Of the beautiful Samuel Brown.<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">For the morn never shines, without bringing me lines,<br /></span> <span class="i2">From my beautiful Samuel Brown;<br /></span> <span class="i0">And the night's never dark, but I sit in the park<br /></span> <span class="i2">With my beautiful Samuel Brown.<br /></span> <span class="i0">And often by day, I walk down in Broadway,<br /></span> <span class="i0">With my darling, my darling, my life and my stay,<br /></span> <span class="i2">To our dwelling down in town,<br /></span> <span class="i2">To our house in the street down town.<br /></span> <span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_261" id="Page_261">[Pg 261]</SPAN></span></div></div> <hr style="width: 65%;" /> <h2>THE WAY IT WUZ</h2> <h3>BY JAMES WHITCOMB RILEY</h3> <div class="poem"><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">Las' July&mdash;an', I presume<br /></span> <span class="i2">'Bout as hot<br /></span> <span class="i0">As the ole Gran'-Jury room<br /></span> <span class="i2">Where they sot!&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i0">Fight 'twixt Mike an' Dock McGriff&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i0">'Pears to me jes' like as if<br /></span> <span class="i2">I'd a dremp' the whole blame thing&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i4">Allus ha'nts me roun' the gizzard<br /></span> <span class="i2">When they're nightmares on the wing,<br /></span> <span class="i6">An' a feller's blood 's jes' friz!<br /></span> <span class="i4">Seed the row from a to izzard&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i2">'Cause I wuz a-standin' as clost to 'em<br /></span> <span class="i6">As me an' you is!<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">Tell you the way it wuz&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i2">An' I don't want to see,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Like <i>some</i> fellers does,<br /></span> <span class="i2">When they're goern to be<br /></span> <span class="i0">Any kind o' fuss&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i0">On'y makes a rumpus wuss<br /></span> <span class="i2">Fer to interfere<br /></span> <span class="i4">When their dander's riz&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i0">But I wuz a-standin' as clost to 'em<br /></span> <span class="i4">As me an' you is!<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">I wuz kind o' strayin'<br /></span> <span class="i2">Past the blame saloon&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i0">Heerd some fiddler playin'<br /></span> <span class="i2">That "ole hee-cup tune!"</span><span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_262" id="Page_262">[Pg 262]</SPAN></span><br /> <span class="i0">Sort o' stopped, you know,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Fer a minit er so,<br /></span> <span class="i2">And wuz jes' about<br /></span> <span class="i0">Settin' down, when&mdash;<i>Jeemses whizz</i>!<br /></span> <span class="i2">Whole durn winder-sash fell out!<br /></span> <span class="i0">An' there laid Dock McGriff, and Mike<br /></span> <span class="i0">A-straddlin' him, all bloody-like,<br /></span> <span class="i2">An' both a-gittin' down to biz!&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i0">An' I wuz a-standin' as clost to 'em<br /></span> <span class="i4">As me an' you is!<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">I wuz the on'y man aroun'&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i0">(Durn old-fogy town!<br /></span> <span class="i2">'Peared more like, to me,<br /></span> <span class="i4"><i>Sund'y</i> 'an <i>Saturd'y!</i>)<br /></span> <span class="i2">Dog come 'crost the road<br /></span> <span class="i4">An' tuck a smell<br /></span> <span class="i6">An' put right back;<br /></span> <span class="i2">Mishler driv by 'ith a load<br /></span> <span class="i4">O' cantalo'pes he couldn't sell&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i6">Too mad, 'y jack!<br /></span> <span class="i2">To even ast<br /></span> <span class="i2">What wuz up, as he went past!<br /></span> <span class="i0">Weather most outrageous hot!&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i4">Fairly hear it sizz<br /></span> <span class="i0">Roun' Dock an' Mike&mdash;till Dock he shot,<br /></span> <span class="i4">An' Mike he slacked that grip o' his<br /></span> <span class="i4">An' fell, all spraddled out. Dock riz<br /></span> <span class="i2">'Bout half up, a-spittin' red,<br /></span> <span class="i2">An' shuck his head&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i0">An' I wuz a-standin' as clost to 'em<br /></span> <span class="i4">As me an' you is!</span><span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_263" id="Page_263">[Pg 263]</SPAN></span><br /> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">An' Dock he says,<br /></span> <span class="i2">A-whisperin'-like,&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i1">"It hain't no use<br /></span> <span class="i2">A-tryin'!&mdash;Mike<br /></span> <span class="i4">He's jes' ripped my daylights loose!&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i2">Git that blame-don fiddler to<br /></span> <span class="i2">Let up, an' come out here&mdash;You<br /></span> <span class="i2">Got some burryin' to do,&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i4">Mike makes <i>one</i>, an' I expects<br /></span> <span class="i2">In ten seconds I'll make <i>two</i>!"<br /></span> <span class="i4">And he drapped back, where he riz,<br /></span> <span class="i2">'Crost Mike's body, black and blue,<br /></span> <span class="i6">Like a great big letter X!&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i2">An' I wuz a-standin' as clost to 'em<br /></span> <span class="i4">As me an' you is!<br /></span> <span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_264" id="Page_264">[Pg 264]</SPAN></span></div></div> <hr style="width: 65%;" /> <h2>SHE TALKED</h2> <h3>BY SAM WALTER FOSS</h3> <div class="poem"><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">She talked of Cosmos and of Cause,<br /></span> <span class="i0">And wove green elephants in gauze,<br /></span> <span class="i4">And while she frescoed earthen jugs,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Her tongue would never pause:<br /></span> <span class="i2">On sages wise and esoteric,<br /></span> <span class="i2">And bards from Wendell Holmes to Herrick:<br /></span> <span class="i0">Thro' time's proud Pantheon she walked,<br /></span> <span class="i0">And talked and talked and talked and talked!<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">And while she talked she would crochet,<br /></span> <span class="i0">And make all kinds of macrame,<br /></span> <span class="i4">Or paint green bobolinks upon<br /></span> <span class="i0">Her mother's earthen tray;<br /></span> <span class="i2">She'd decorate a smelling bottle<br /></span> <span class="i2">While she conversed on Aristotle;<br /></span> <span class="i0">While fame's proud favorites round her flocked,<br /></span> <span class="i0">She talked and talked and talked and talked!<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">She talked and made embroidered rugs,<br /></span> <span class="i0">She talked and painted 'lasses jugs,<br /></span> <span class="i4">And worked five sea-green turtle doves<br /></span> <span class="i0">On papa's shaving mugs;<br /></span> <span class="i2">With Emerson or Epictetus,<br /></span> <span class="i2">Plato or Kant, she used to greet us:<br /></span> <span class="i0">She talked until we all were shocked,<br /></span> <span class="i0">And talked and talked and talked and talked!</span><span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_265" id="Page_265">[Pg 265]</SPAN></span><br /> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">She had a lover, and he told<br /></span> <span class="i0">The story that is never old,<br /></span> <span class="i4">While she her father's bootjack worked<br /></span> <span class="i0">A lovely green and gold.<br /></span> <span class="i2">She switched off on Theocritus,<br /></span> <span class="i2">And talked about Democritus;<br /></span> <span class="i0">And his most ardent passion balked,<br /></span> <span class="i0">And talked and talked and talked and talked.<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">He begged her to become his own;<br /></span> <span class="i0">She talked of ether and ozone,<br /></span> <span class="i4">And painted yellow poodles on<br /></span> <span class="i0">Her brother's razor hone;<br /></span> <span class="i2">Then talked of Noah and Neb'chadnezzar,<br /></span> <span class="i2">And Timon and Tiglath-pileser&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i0">While he at her heart portals knocked,<br /></span> <span class="i0">She talked and talked and talked and talked!<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">He bent in love's tempestuous gale,<br /></span> <span class="i0">She talked of strata and of shale,<br /></span> <span class="i4">And worked magenta poppies on<br /></span> <span class="i0">Her mother's water pail;<br /></span> <span class="i2">And while he talked of passion's power,<br /></span> <span class="i2">She amplified on Schopenhauer&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i0">A pistol flashed: he's dead! Unshocked,<br /></span> <span class="i0">She talked and talked and talked and talked!<br /></span> <span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_266" id="Page_266">[Pg 266]</SPAN></span></div></div> <hr style="width: 65%;" /> <h2>GRANDMA KEELER GETS GRANDPA READY FOR SUNDAY-SCHOOL</h2> <h3>BY SARAH P. McLEAN GREENE</h3> <p>Sunday morning nothing arose in Wallencamp save the sun.</p> <p>At least, that celestial orb had long forgotten all the roseate flaming of his youth, in an honest, straightforward march through the heavens, ere the first signs of smoke came curling lazily up from the Wallencamp chimneys.</p> <p>I had retired at night, very weary, with the delicious consciousness that it wouldn't make any difference when I woke up the next morning, or whether, indeed, I woke at all. So I opened my eyes leisurely and lay half-dreaming, half-meditating on a variety of things.</p> <p>I deciphered a few of the texts on the scriptural patchwork quilt which covered my couch. There were&mdash;"Let not your heart be troubled," "Remember Lot's wife," and "Philander Keeler," traced in inky hieroglyphics, all in close conjunction.</p> <p>Finally I reached out for my watch, and, having ascertained the time of day, I got up and proceeded to dress hastily enough, wondering to hear no signs of life in the house.</p> <p>I went noiselessly down the stairs. All was silent below, except for the peaceful snoring of Mrs. Philander and the little Keelers, which was responded to from some remote western corner of the Ark by the triumphant snores of Grandma and Grandpa Keeler.<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_267" id="Page_267">[Pg 267]</SPAN></span></p> <p>I attempted to kindle a fire in the stove, but it sizzled a little while, spitefully, as much as to say, "What, Sunday morning? Not I!" and went out. So I concluded to put on some wraps and go out and warm myself in the sun.</p> <p>I climbed the long hill back of the Ark, descended, and walked along the bank of the river. It was a beautiful morning. The air was&mdash;everything that could be desired in the way of air, but I felt a desperate need of something more substantial.</p> <p>Standing alone with nature, on the bank of the lovely river, I thought, with tears in my eyes, of the delicious breakfast already recuperating the exhausted energies of my far-away home friends.</p> <p>When I got back to the house, Mrs. Philander, in simple and unaffected attire, was bustling busily about the stove.</p> <p>The snores from Grandma and Grandpa's quarter had ceased, signifying that they, also, had advanced a stage in the grand processes of Sunday morning.</p> <p>The children came teasing me to dress them, so I fastened for them a variety of small articles which I flattered myself on having combined in a very ingenious and artistic manner, though I believe those infant Keelers went weeping to Grandma afterward, and were remodeled by her all-comforting hand with much skill and patience.</p> <p>In the midst of her preparations for breakfast, Madeline abruptly assumed her hat and shawl, and was seen from the window, walking leisurely across the fields in the direction of the woods. She returned in due time, bearing an armful of fresh evergreens, which she twisted around the family register.</p> <p>When the ancient couple made their appearance, I remarked silently, in regard to Grandma Keeler's hair, what<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_268" id="Page_268">[Pg 268]</SPAN></span> proved afterward to be its usual holiday morning arrangement. It was confined in six infinitesimal braids which appeared to be sprouting out, perpendicularly, in all directions from her head. The effect of redundancy and expansiveness thus heightened and increased on Grandma's features was striking in the extreme.</p> <p>While we were eating breakfast, that good soul observed to Grandpa Keeler: "Wall, pa, I suppose you'll be all ready when the time comes to take teacher and me over to West Wallen to Sunday-school, won't ye?"</p> <p>Grandpa coughed, and coughed again, and raised his eyes helplessly to the window.</p> <p>"Looks some like showers," said he. "A-hem! a-hem! Looks mightily to me like showers, over yonder."</p> <p>"Thar', r'aly, husband! I must say I feel mortified for ye," said Grandma. "Seein' as you're a perfessor, too, and thar' ain't been a single Sunday mornin' since I've lived with ye, pa, summer or winter, but what you've seen showers, and it r'aly seems to me it's dreadful inconsistent when thar' ain't no cloud in the sky, and don't look no more like rain than I do." And Grandma's face, in spite of her reproachful tones, was, above all, blandly sunlike and expressive of anything rather than deluge and watery disaster.</p> <p>Grandpa was silent a little while, then coughed again. I had never seen Grandpa in worse straits.</p> <p>"A-hem! a-hem! 'Fanny' seems to be a little lame, this mornin'," said he. "I shouldn't wonder. She's been goin' pretty stiddy this week."</p> <p>"It does beat all, pa," continued Grandma Keeler, "how 't all the horses you've ever had since I've known ye have always been took lame Sunday mornin'. Thar' was 'Happy Jack,' he could go anywhers through the week, and never limp a step, as nobody could see, and<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_269" id="Page_269">[Pg 269]</SPAN></span> Sunday mornin' he was always took lame! And thar' was 'Tantrum'&mdash;"</p> <p>"Tantrum" was the horse that had run away with Grandma when she was thrown from the wagon, and generally smashed to pieces. And now, Grandma branched off into the thrilling reminiscences connected with this incident of her life, which was the third time during the week that the horrible tale had been repeated for my delectation.</p> <p>When she had finished, Grandpa shook his head with painful earnestness, reverting to the former subject of discussion.</p> <p>"It's a long jaunt!" said he; "a long jaunt!"</p> <p>"Thar's a long hill to climb before we reach Zion's mount," said Grandma Keeler, impressively.</p> <p>"Wall, there's a darned sight harder one on the road to West Wallen!" burst out the old sea-captain desperately; "say nothin' about the devilish stones!"</p> <p>"Thar' now," said Grandma, with calm though awful reproof; "I think we've gone fur enough for one day; we've broke the Sabbath, and took the name of the Lord in vain, and that ought to be enough for perfessors."</p> <p>Grandpa replied at length in a greatly subdued tone: "Wall, if you and the teacher want to go over to Sunday-school to-day, I suppose we can go if we get ready," a long submissive sigh&mdash;"I suppose we can."</p> <p>"They have preachin' service in the mornin', I suppose," said Grandma. "But we don't generally git along to that. It makes such an early start. We generally try to get around, when we go, in time for Sunday-school. They have singin' and all. It's just about as interestin', I think, as preachin'. The old man r'aly likes it," she observed aside to me; "when he once gets started, but he kind o' dreads the gittin' started."<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_270" id="Page_270">[Pg 270]</SPAN></span></p> <p>When I beheld the ordeal through which Grandpa Keeler was called to pass, at the hands of his faithful consort, before he was considered in a fit condition of mind and body to embark for the sanctuary, I marveled not at the old man's reluctance, nor that he had indeed seen clouds and tempest fringing the horizon.</p> <p>Immediately after breakfast, he set out for the barn, ostensibly to "see to the chores;" really, I believe, to obtain a few moments' respite, before worse evil should come upon him.</p> <p>Pretty soon Grandma was at the back door calling in firm though persuasive tones:</p> <p>"Husband! husband! come in, now, and get ready."</p> <p>No answer. Then it was in another key, weighty, yet expressive of no weak irritation, that Grandma called "Come, pa! pa-a! pa-a-a!" Still no answer.</p> <p>Then that voice of Grandma's sung out like a trumpet, terrible with meaning&mdash;"Bijonah Keeler!"</p> <p>But Grandpa appeared not. Next, I saw Grandma slowly but surely gravitating in the direction of the barn, and soon she returned, bringing with her that ancient delinquent, who looked like a lost sheep indeed and a truly unreconciled one.</p> <p>"Now the first thing," said Grandma, looking her forlorn captive over; "is boots. Go and get on yer meetin' gaiters, pa."</p> <p>The old gentleman, having dutifully invested himself, with those sacred relics, came pathetically limping into the room.</p> <p>"I declare, ma," said he; "somehow these things&mdash;phew! Somehow they pinch my feet dreadfully. I don't know what it is,&mdash;phew! They're dreadful oncomf'table things somehow."</p> <p>"Since I've known ye, pa," solemnly ejaculated Grand<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_271" id="Page_271">[Pg 271]</SPAN></span>ma Keeler, "you've never had a pair o' meetin' boots that set easy on yer feet. You'd ought to get boots big enough for ye, pa," she continued, looking down disapprovingly on the old gentleman's pedal extremities, which resembled two small scows at anchor in black cloth encasements: "and not be so proud as to go to pinchin' yer feet into gaiters a number o' sizes too small for ye."</p> <p>"They're number tens, I tell ye!" roared Grandpa nettled outrageously by this cutting taunt.</p> <p>"Wall, thar', now, pa," said Grandma, soothingly; "if I had sech feet as that, I wouldn't go to spreadin' it all over town, if I was you&mdash;but it's time we stopped bickerin' now, husband, and got ready for meetin'; so set down and let me wash yer head."</p> <p>"I've washed once this mornin'. It's clean enough," Grandpa protested, but in vain. He was planted in a chair, and Grandma Keeler, with rag and soap and a basin of water, attacked the old gentleman vigorously, much as I have seen cruel mothers wash the faces of their earth-begrimed infants. He only gave expression to such groans as:</p> <p>"Thar', ma! don't tear my ears to pieces! Come, ma! you've got my eyes so full o' soap now, ma, that I can't see nothin'. Phew, Lordy! ain't ye most through with this, ma?"</p> <p>Then came the dyeing process, which Grandma Keeler assured me, aside, made Grandpa "look like a man o' thirty;" but to me, after it he looked neither old nor young, human nor inhuman, nor like anything that I had ever seen before under the sun.</p> <p>"There's the lotion, the potion, the dye-er, and the setter," said Grandma, pointing to four bottles on the table. "Now whar's the directions, Madeline?"</p> <p>These having been produced from between the leaves<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_272" id="Page_272">[Pg 272]</SPAN></span> of the family Bible, Madeline read, while Grandma made a vigorous practical application of the various mixtures.</p> <p>"This admirable lotion"&mdash;in soft ecstatic tones Madeline rehearsed the flowery language of the recipe&mdash;"though not so instantaneously startling in its effect as our inestimable dyer and setter, yet forms a most essential part of the whole process, opening, as it does, the dry and lifeless pores of the scalp, imparting to them new life and beauty, and rendering them more easily susceptible to the applications which follow. But we must go deeper than this; a tone must be given to the whole system by means of the cleansing and rejuvenating of the very centre of our beings, and, for this purpose, we have prepared our wonderful potion." Here Grandpa, with a wry face, was made to swallow a spoonful of the mixture. "Our unparalleled dyer," Madeline continued, "restores black hair to a more than original gloss and brilliancy, and gives to the faded golden tress the sunny flashes of youth." Grandpa was dyed. "Our world-renowned setter completes and perfects the whole process by adding tone and permanency to the efficacious qualities of the lotion, potion, and dyer, etc.;" while on Grandpa's head the unutterable dye was set.</p> <p>"Now, read teacher some of the testimonials, daughter," said Grandma Keeler, whose face was one broad, generous illustration of that rare and peculiar virtue called faith.</p> <p>So Madeline continued: "Mrs. Hiram Briggs, of North Dedham, writes: 'I was terribly afflicted with baldness, so that, for months, I was little more than an outcast from society, and an object of pity to my most familiar friends. I tried every remedy in vain. At length I heard of your wonderful restorative. After a week's application, my hair had already begun to grow<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_273" id="Page_273">[Pg 273]</SPAN></span> in what seemed the most miraculous manner. At the end of ten months it had assumed such length and proportions as to be a most luxurious burden, and where I had before been regarded with pity and aversion, I became the envied and admired of all beholders.'"</p> <p>"Just think!" said Grandma Keeler, with rapturous sympathy and gratitude, "how that poor creetur must a' felt!"</p> <p>"'Orion Spaulding, of Weedsville, Vermont,'" Madeline went on&mdash;but, here, I had to beg to be excused, and went to my room to get ready for the Sunday-school.</p> <p>When I came down again, Grandpa Keeler was seated, completely arrayed in his best clothes, opposite Grandma, who held the big family Bible in her lap, and a Sunday-school question book in one hand.</p> <p>"Now, pa," said she; "what tribe was it in sacred writ that wore bunnits?"</p> <p>I was compelled to infer from the tone of Grandpa Keeler's answer that his temper had not undergone a mollifying process during my absence.</p> <p>"Come, ma," said he; "how much longer ye goin' to pester me in this way?"</p> <p>"Why, pa," Grandma rejoined calmly; "until you git a proper understandin' of it. What tribe was it in sacred writ that wore bunnits?"</p> <p>"Lordy!" exclaimed the old man. "How d'ye suppose I know! They must 'a' been a tarnal old womanish lookin' set anyway."</p> <p>"The tribe o' Judah, pa," said Grandma, gravely. "Now, how good it is, husband, to have your understandin' all freshened up on the scripters!"</p> <p>"Come, come, ma!" said Grandpa, rising nervously. "It's time we was startin'. When I make up my mind to go anywhere I always want to git there in time. If I was<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_274" id="Page_274">[Pg 274]</SPAN></span> goin' to the Old Harry, I should want to git there in time."</p> <p>"It's my consarn that we shall git thar' before time, some on us," said Grandma, with sad meaning, "unless we larn to use more respec'ful language."</p> <p>I shall never forget how we set off for church that Sabbath morning, way out at one of the sunny back doors of the Ark: for there was Madeline's little cottage that fronted the highway, or lane, and then there was a long backward extension of the Ark, only one story in height. This belonged peculiarly to Grandma and Grandpa Keeler. It contained the "parlor" and three "keepin'" rooms opening one into the other, all of the same size and general bare and gloomy appearance, all possessing the same sacredly preserved atmosphere, through which we passed with becoming silence and solemnity into the "end" room, the sunny kitchen where Grandma and Grandpa kept house by themselves in the summer time, and there at the door, her very yellow coat reflecting the rays of the sun, stood Fanny, presenting about as much appearance of life and animation as a pensive summer squash.</p> <p>The carriage, I thought, was a fac-simile of the one in which I had been brought from West Wallen on the night of my arrival. One of the most striking peculiarities of this sort of vehicle was the width at which the wheels were set apart. The body seemed comparatively narrow. It was very long, and covered with white canvas. It had neither windows nor doors, but just the one guarded opening in front. There were no steps leading to this, and, indeed, a variety of obstacles before it. And the way Grandma effected an entrance was to put a chair on a mound of earth, and a cricket on top of the chair, and thus, having climbed up to Fanny's reposeful back, she slipped passively down, feet foremost, to the whiffle-tree;<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_275" id="Page_275">[Pg 275]</SPAN></span> from thence she easily gained the plane of the carriage floor.</p> <p>Grandpa and I took a less circuitous, though, perhaps, not less difficult route.</p> <p>I sat with Grandpa on the "front" seat&mdash;it may be remarked that the "front" seat was very much front, and the "back" seat very much back&mdash;there was a kind of wooden shelf built outside as a resting-place for the feet, so that while our heads were under cover, our feet were out, utterly exposed to the weather, and we must either lay them on the shelf or let them hang off into space.</p> <p>Madeline and the children stood at the door to see us off.</p> <p>"All aboard! ship ballasted! wind fa'r! go ahead thar', Fanny!" shouted Grandpa, who seemed quite restored in spirits, and held the reins and wielded the whip with a masterful air.</p> <p>He spun sea-yarns, too, all the way&mdash;marvelous ones, and Grandma's reproving voice was mellowed by the distance, and so confusedly mingled with the rumbling of the wheels, that it seemed hardly to reach him at all. Not that Grandma looked discomfited on this account, or in bad humor. On the contrary, as she sat back there in the ghostly shadows, with her hands folded, and her hair combed out in resplendent waves on either side of her head, she appeared conscious that every word she uttered was taking root in some obdurate heart. She was, in every respect, the picture of good-will and contentment.</p> <p>But the face under Grandpa's antiquated beaver began to give me a fresh shock every time I looked up at him, for the light and the air were rapidly turning his rejuvenated locks and his poor, thin fringe of whiskers to an unnatural greenish tint, while his bushy eyebrows, untouched by the hand of art, shone as white as ever.<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_276" id="Page_276">[Pg 276]</SPAN></span></p> <p>In spite of the old sea-captain's entertaining stories, it seemed, indeed, "a long jaunt" to West Wallen.</p> <p>To say that Fanny was a slow horse would be but a feeble expression of the truth.</p> <p>A persevering "click! click! click!" began to arise from Grandma's quarter. This annoyed Grandpa exceedingly.</p> <p>"Shet up, ma!" he was moved to exclaim at last. "I'm steerin' this craft."</p> <p>"Click! click! click!" came perseveringly from behind.</p> <p>"Dum it, ma! thar', ma!" cried Grandpa, exasperated beyond measure. "How is this hoss goin' to hear anything that I say ef you keep up such a tarnal cacklin'?"</p> <p>Just as we were coming out of the thickest part of the woods, about a mile beyond Wallencamp, we discovered a man walking in the distance. It was the only human being we had seen since we started.</p> <p>"Hullo, there's Lovell!" exclaimed Grandpa. "I was wonderin' why we hadn't overtook him before. We gin'ally take him in on the road. Yis, yis; that's Lovell, ain't it, teacher?"</p> <p>I put up my glasses, helplessly.</p> <p>"I'm sure," I said, "I can't tell, positively. I have seen Mr. Barlow but once, and at that distance I shouldn't know my own father."</p> <p>"Must be Lovell," said Grandpa. "Yis, I know him! Hullo, thar'! Ship ahoy! ship ahoy!"</p> <p>Grandpa's voice suggested something of the fire and vigor it must have had when it rang out across the foam of waves and pierced the tempest's roar.</p> <p>The man turned and looked at us, and then went on again.</p> <p>"He don't seem to recognize us," said Grandma.</p> <p>"Ship a-hoy! Ship a-hoy!" shouted Grandpa.<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_277" id="Page_277">[Pg 277]</SPAN></span></p> <p>The man turned and looked at us again, and this time he stopped and kept on looking.</p> <p>When we got up to him we saw that it wasn't Lovell Barlow at all, but a stranger of trampish appearance, drunk and fiery, and fixed in an aggressive attitude.</p> <p>I was naturally terrified. What if he should attack us in that lonely spot! Grandpa was so old! And moreover, Grandpa was so taken aback to find that it wasn't Lovell that he began some blunt and stammering expression of surprise, which only served to increase the stranger's ire. Grandma, imperturbable soul! who never failed to come to the rescue even in the most desperate emergencies&mdash;Grandma climbed over to the front, thrust out her benign head, and said in that deep, calm voice of hers:</p> <p>"We're a goin' to the house of God, brother; won't you git in and go too?"</p> <p>"No!" our brother replied, doubling up his fists and shaking them menacingly in our faces: "I won't go to no house o' God. What d'ye mean by overhauling me on the road, and askin' me to git into yer d&mdash;d old traveling lunatic asylum?"</p> <p>"Drive on, pa," said Grandma, coldly. "He ain't in no condition to be labored with now. Drive on kind o' quick!"</p> <p>"Kind o' quick" we could not go, but Fanny was made to do her best, and we did not pause to look behind.</p> <p>When we got to the church Sunday-school had already begun. There was Lovell Barlow looking preternaturally stiff in his best clothes, sitting with a class of young men. He saw us when we came in, and gave me a look of deep meaning. It was the same expression&mdash;as though there was some solemn, mutual understanding between us&mdash;which he had worn on that night when he gave me his picture.<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_278" id="Page_278">[Pg 278]</SPAN></span></p> <p>"There's plenty of young folks' classes," said Grandma; "but seein' as we're late maybe you'd jest as soon go right along in with us."</p> <p>I said that I should like that best, so I went into the "old folks'" class with Grandma and Grandpa Keeler.</p> <p>There were three pews of old people in front of us, and the teacher, who certainly seemed to me the oldest person I had ever seen, sat in an otherwise vacant pew in front of all, so that, his voice being very thin and querulous, we could hear very little that he said, although we were edified in some faint sense by his pious manner of shaking his head and rolling his eyes toward the ceiling.</p> <p>The church was a square wooden edifice, of medium size, and contained three stoves all burning brightly. Against this, and the drowsy effect of their long drive in the sun and wind, my two companions proved powerless to struggle.</p> <p>Grandpa looked furtively up at Grandma, then endeavored to put on as a sort of apology for what he felt was inevitably coming, a sanctimonious expression which was most unnatural to him, and which soon faded away as the sweet unconsciousness of slumber overspread his features. His head fell back helplessly, his mouth opened wide. He snored, but not very loudly. I looked at Grandma, wondering why her vigilance had failed on this occasion, and lo! her head was falling peacefully from side to side. She was fast asleep, too. She woke up first, however, and then Grandpa was speedily and adroitly aroused by some means, I think it was a pin; and Grandma fed him with bits of unsweetened flag-root, which he munched penitently, though evidently without relish, until he dropped off to sleep again, and she dropped off to sleep again, and so they continued.</p> <p>But it always happened that Grandma woke up first.<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_279" id="Page_279">[Pg 279]</SPAN></span> And whereas Grandpa, when the avenging pin pierced his shins, recovered himself with a start and an air of guilty confusion, Grandma opened her eyes at regular intervals, with the utmost calm and placidity, as though she had merely been closing them to engage in a few moments of silent prayer.<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_280" id="Page_280">[Pg 280]</SPAN></span></p> <hr style="width: 65%;" /> <h2>VIVE LA BAGATELLE</h2> <h3>BY GELETT BURGESS</h3> <div class="poem"><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">Sing a song of foolishness, laughing stocks and cranks!<br /></span> <span class="i0">The more there are the merrier; come join the ranks!<br /></span> <span class="i0">Life is dry and stupid; whoop her up a bit!<br /></span> <span class="i0">Donkeys live in clover; bray and throw a fit!<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">Take yourself in earnest, never stop to think,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Strut and swagger boldly, dress in red and pink;<br /></span> <span class="i0">Prate of stuff and nonsense, get yourself abused;<br /></span> <span class="i0">Some one's got to play the fool to keep the crowd amused!<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">Bully for the idiot! Bully for the guy!<br /></span> <span class="i0">You could be a prig yourself, if you would only try!<br /></span> <span class="i0">Altruistic asses keep the fun alive;<br /></span> <span class="i0">Clowns are growing scarcer; hurry and arrive!<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">I seen a crazy critic a-writin' of a screed;<br /></span> <span class="i0">"Tendencies" and "Unities"&mdash;Maeterlinck indeed!<br /></span> <span class="i0">He wore a paper collar, and his tie was up behind;<br /></span> <span class="i0">If that's the test of Culture, then I'm glad I'm not refined!<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">Let me laugh at you, then you can laugh at me;<br /></span> <span class="i0">Then we'll josh together everything we see;<br /></span> <span class="i0">Every one's a nincompoop to another's view;<br /></span> <span class="i0">Laughter makes the sun shine! Roop-de-doodle-doo!<br /></span> <span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_281" id="Page_281">[Pg 281]</SPAN></span></div></div> <hr style="width: 65%;" /> <h2>THE TWO BROTHERS</h2> <h3>BY CAROLYN WELLS</h3> <p>Once on a Time there were Two Brothers who Set Out to make their Way In The World.</p> <p>One was of a Roving Disposition, and no sooner had he settled Down to Live in One Place than he would Gather Up all his Goods and Chattels and Move to another Place. From here again he would Depart and make him a Fresh Home, and so on until he Became an Old Man and had gained neither Fortune nor Friends.</p> <p>The Other, being Disinclined to Change or Diversity of Scene, remained all his Life in One Place. He therefore Became Narrow-Minded and Provincial, and gained None of the Culture and Liberality of Nature which comes from Contact with various Scenes of Life.</p> <h3>MORALS:</h3> <p>This Fable teaches that a Rolling Stone Gathers No Moss, and a Setting Hen Never Grows Fat.<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_282" id="Page_282">[Pg 282]</SPAN></span></p> <hr style="width: 65%;" /> <h2>A LETTER</h2> <h3>FROM PETROLEUM V. NASBY</h3> <p><span class="smcap">I am Requested to Act as Chaplain of the Cleveland Convention.&mdash;That Beautiful City Visited for that Purpose.</span></p> <p> <span class="smcap">Post Offis, Confedrit X Roads</span>,<br /> <span style="margin-left: 1.5em;">(wich is in the Stait uv Kentucky),</span><br /> <span style="margin-left: 3em;">September 20, 1866.</span><br /> </p> <p>I wuz sent for to come to Washington, from my comfortable quarters at the Post Offis, to attend the convenshun uv sich soldiers and sailors uv the United States ez bleeve in a Union uv 36 States, and who hev sworn allejinse to a flag with 36 stars onto it, at Cleveland. My esteemed and life-long friend and co-laborer, Rev. Henry Ward Beecher, wuz to hev bin the chaplin uv the convenshun, but he failed us, and it wuz decided in a Cabinet meetin that I shood take his place. I didn't see the necessity uv hevin a chaplin at every little convenshun uv our party, and so stated; but Seward remarked, with a groan, that ef ever there wuz a party, since parties wuz invented, wich needed prayin for, ours wuz that party. "And, Parson," sed he, glancin' at a list uv delegates, "ef yoo hev any agonizin petitions, any prayers uv extra fervency, offer em up for these fellers. Ef there is any efficacy in prayer, it's my honest, unbiased opinion that there never wuz in the history uv the world, nor never will be agin, sich a magnificent chance to make it manifest. Try yoor-self particularly on Custer; tho', after all," continyood he,<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_283" id="Page_283">[Pg 283]</SPAN></span> in a musin, abstracted sort uv a way, wich he's fallen into lately, "the fellow is sich a triflin bein, that he reely kin hardly be held 'sponsible for what he's doin; and the balance uv em, good Hevens! they'r mostly druv to it by hunger." And the Secretary maundered on suthin about "sixty days" and "ninety days," payin no more attention to the rest uv us than ez ef we wuzn't there at all.</p> <p>So, receevin transportashen and suffishent money from the secret service fund for expenses, I departed for Cleveland, and after a tejus trip thro' an Ablishn country, I arrived there. My thots were gloomy beyond expression. I hed recently gone through this same country ez chaplin to the Presidential tour, and every stashen hed its pecooliar onpleasant remembrances. Here wuz where the cheers for Grant were vociferous, with nary a snort for His Eggslency; there wuz where the peasantry laft in his face when he went thro' with the regler ritooal uv presentin the constitooshn and the flag with 36 stars onto it to a deestrick assessor; there wuz&mdash;but why recount my sufferins? Why harrow up the public bosom, or lasserate the public mind? Suffice to say, I endoored it; suffice to say that I hed strength left to ride up Bank street, in Cleveland, the seen uv the most awful insult the Eggsecutive ever receeved.</p> <p>The evenin I arrived, the delegates, sich ez wuz on hand, held a informal meetin to arrange matters so ez they wood work smooth when the crowd finally got together. Genral Wool wuz ez gay and frisky ez though he reely belonged to the last ginerashn. There wuz Custar, uv Michigan, with his hair freshly oiled and curled, and busslin about ez though he hed cheated hisself into the beleef that he reely amounted to suthin; and there wuz seventy-eight other men, who hed distinguished theirselves in the late war, but who hed never got their deserts,<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_284" id="Page_284">[Pg 284]</SPAN></span> ceptin by brevet, owin to the fact that the Administrashn wuz Ablishn, which they wuzn't. They were, in a pekuniary pint uv view, suthin the worse for wear, tho' why that shood hev bin the case I coodent see (they hevin bin, to an alarmin extent, quarter-masters and commissaries, and in the recrootin service), til I notist the prevailin color uv their noses, and heerd one uv em ask his neighbor ef Cleveland wuz blest with a faro bank! Then I knowd all about it.</p> <p>There wuz another pekooliarity about it which for a time amoozed me. Them ez wuz present wuz divided into 2 classes&mdash;those ez hed bin recently appinted to posishens, and them ez expected to be shortly. I notist on the countenances uv the first class a look uv releef, sich ez I hev seen in factories Saturday nite, after the hands wuz paid off for a hard week's work; and on the other class the most wolfish, hungry, fierce expression I hev ever witnessed. Likewise, I notist that the latter set uv patriots talked more hefty uv the necessity uv sustainin the policy uv our firm and noble President, and damned the Ablishunists with more emphasis and fervency than the others.</p> <p>One enthoosiastic individual, who hed bin quartermaster two years, and hed bin allowed to resign "jest after the battle, mother," wich, hevin his papers all destroyed, made settlin with the government a easy matter, wuz so feroshus that I felt called upon to check him. "Gently, my frend," sed I, "gently! I hev bin thro' this thing; I hev my commission. It broke out on me jest ez it hez on yoo; but yoo won't git yoor Assessorship a minit sooner for it."</p> <p>"It ain't a Assessorship I want," sez he. "I hev devoted myself to the task uv bindin up the wounds uv my beloved country&mdash;"<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_285" id="Page_285">[Pg 285]</SPAN></span></p> <p>"Did you stop anybody very much from inflictin them sed wounds?" murmured I.</p> <p>"An ef I accept the Post Orfis in my native village,&mdash;which I hev bin solissited so strongly to take that I hev finally yielded,&mdash;I do it only that I may devote my few remainin energies wholly to the great cause uv restorin the 36 States to their normal posishens under the flag with 36 stars onto it, in spite uv the Joodis Iskariots wich, ef I am whom, wat is the Savior, and&mdash;and where is&mdash;"</p> <p>Perseevin that the unfortunate man hed got into the middle uv a quotashen from the speech uv our noble and patriotic President, and knowin his intellek wuzn't hefty enough to git it off jist as it wuz originally delivered, I took him by the throat, and shet off the flood uv his elokence.</p> <p>"Be quiet, yoo idiot!" remarked I, soothingly, to him. "Yoo'll git your apintment, becoz, for the fust time in the history uv this or any other Republic, there's a market for jist sich men ez yoo; but all this blather won't fetch it a minit sooner."</p> <p>"Good Lord!" tho't I, ez I turned away, "wat a President A.J. is, to hev to buy up <i>sich</i> cattle! Wat a postmaster he must be, whose gineral cussedness turns <i>my</i> stummick!"</p> <p>It wuz deemed necessary to see uv wat we wuz compozed; whatever Kernel K&mdash;&mdash;, who is now Collector uv Revenue in Illinoy, asked ef there wuz ary man in the room who hed bin a prizner doorin the late fratricidle struggle. A gentleman uv, perhaps, thirty aroze, and sed he wuz. He hed bin taken three times, and wuz, altogether, 18 months in doorance vile in three diffrent prizns.</p> <p>Custar fell on his neck, and asked him, aggitatidly, ef he wuz shoor&mdash;quite shoor, after sufferin all that, that he<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_286" id="Page_286">[Pg 286]</SPAN></span> supported the policy of the President? Are you quite shoor&mdash;quite shoor?</p> <p>"I am," returned the phenomenon. "I stand by Andrew Johnson and his policy, and I don't want no office!"</p> <p>"Hev yoo got wun?" shouted they all in korus.</p> <p>"Nary!" sed he. "With me it is a matter uv principle!"</p> <p>"Wat prizns wuz yoo incarcerated in?" asked I, lookin at him with wonder.</p> <p>"Fust at Camp Morton, then at Camp Douglas, and finally at Johnson's Island!"</p> <p>Custar dropt him, and the rest remarked that, while they hed a very helthy opinion uv him, they guessed he'd better not menshen his presence, or consider hisself a delegate. Ez ginerous foes they loved him ruther better than a brother; yet, as the call didn't quite inclood him, tho' there wuz a delightful oneness between em, yet, ef 'twuz all the same, he hed better not announce hisself. He wuz from Kentucky, I afterwards ascertained.</p> <p>The next mornin, suthin over two hundred more arriv; and the delegashens bein all in, it wuz decided to go on with the show. A big tent hed bin brought on from Boston to accommodate the expected crowd, and quite an animated discussion arose ez to wich corner uv it the Convenshun wuz to ockepy. This settled, the biznis wuz begun. Genral Wool wuz made temporary Chairman, to wich honor he responded in a elokent extemporaneous speech, which he read from manuscript. General Ewing made another extemporaneous address, which he read from manuscript, and we adjourned for dinner.</p> <p>The dinner hour was spent in caucussin privately in one uv the parlors uv the hotel. The Chairman asked who shood make speeches after dinner, wen every man uv em pulled from his right side coat pocket a roll uv manuscript, and sed he hed jotted down a few ijees wich<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_287" id="Page_287">[Pg 287]</SPAN></span> he hed conclooded to present extemporaneously to the Convenshun. That Babel over, the Chairman sed he presoomed some one shood be selected to prepare a address; whereupon every delegate rose, and pulled a roll uv manuscript from his left side coat pocket, and sed he had jotted down a few ijees on the situashn, wich he proposed to present, et settry. This occasioned another shindy; wen the Chairman remarked "Resolushens," wen every delegate rose, pulled a roll uv manuscript from his right breast coat pocket, and sed he hed jotted down a few ijees, wich, etc.</p> <p>I stood it until some one mentioned me ez Chaplin to the expedition West, when the pressure becum unendurable. They sposed I was keeper uv the President's conscience, and I hed not a minit's peece after that. In vain I ashoored em that, there bein no consciences about the White House, no one could hold sich a offis; in vain I ashoored em that I hed no influence with His Majesty. Two-thirds uv em pulled applicashens for places they wanted from the left breast coat pocket, and insistid on my takin em, and seem that they was appinted. I told em that I cood do nuthin for em; but they laft me to skorn. "You are jist the style uv man," said they, "who hez inflooence with His Eggslency, and yoo must do it." Hemmed in, there wuz but one way uv escape, and that way I took. Seezin a carpet sack, wich, by the way, belonged to a delegate (I took it to give myself the look of a traveler), I rushed to the depot, and startid home, entirely satisfied that ef Cleveland may be taken as a sample, the less His Majesty depends on soljers, the better.</p> <p style="text-align: right;"><span class="smcap">Petroleum V. Nasby</span>, P.M.<br /> (wich is Postmaster),<br /> and likewise late Chaplain to the expedishn.<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_288" id="Page_288">[Pg 288]</SPAN></span></p> <p>P.S.&mdash;I opened the carpet sack on the train, spectin to find a clean shirt in it, at least. It contained, to my disgust, an address to be read before the Cleveland Convention, a set uv resolutions, a speech, and a petition uv the proprietor thereof for a collectorship, signed by eight hundred names, and a copy uv the Indiana State Directory for 1864. The names wuz in one hand-writin, and wuz arranged alphabetically.</p> <p style="text-align: right;"><span class="smcap">Petroleum V. Nasby</span>.<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_289" id="Page_289">[Pg 289]</SPAN></span></p> <hr style="width: 65%;" /> <h2>FAMILIAR AUTHORS AT WORK</h2> <h3>BY HAYDEN CARRUTH</h3> <h3><span class="smcap">Miss Tripp</span></h3> <div class="poem"><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">Miss Tripp for years has lived alone,<br /></span> <span class="i2">Without display or fuss or pother.<br /></span> <span class="i0">The house she dwells in is her own&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i2">She got it from her dying father.<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">Miss T. delights in all good works,<br /></span> <span class="i2">She goes to church three times on Sunday,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Her daily duty never shirks,<br /></span> <span class="i2">Nor keeps her goodness for this one day.<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">She loves to bake and knit and sew,<br /></span> <span class="i2">For wider fields she doesn't hanker;<br /></span> <span class="i0">Yet for the things they have I know<br /></span> <span class="i2">A-many poor folk have to thank her.<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">The simple life she truly leads,<br /></span> <span class="i2">She loves her small domestic labors;<br /></span> <span class="i0">In spring she plants her garden seeds<br /></span> <span class="i2">And shares the product with her neighbors.<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">By <i>Books and Authors</i> now I see<br /></span> <span class="i2">In literature she's made a foray:<br /></span> <span class="i0">"The Yellow Shadow"&mdash;said to be<br /></span> <span class="i2">"A crackerjack detective-story."<br /></span> <span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_290" id="Page_290">[Pg 290]</SPAN></span></div></div> <h3><span class="smcap">Captain Brown</span></h3> <div class="poem"><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">Bluff Captain Brown is somewhat queer,<br /></span> <span class="i2">But of the sea he's very knowing.<br /></span> <span class="i0">I scarcely meet him once a year&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i2">He's off in search of whales a-blowing.<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">For fifty years&mdash;perhaps for more&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i2">He's sailed about upon the ocean.<br /></span> <span class="i0">He thinks that if he lived ashore<br /></span> <span class="i2">He'd die. But this is just a notion.<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">Still when the Captain comes to port<br /></span> <span class="i2">With barrels of oil from whales caught napping,<br /></span> <span class="i0">He'll pace the deck, and loudly snort,<br /></span> <span class="i2">"This land air is my strength a-sapping.<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">"I call this living on hard terms;<br /></span> <span class="i2">I wish that I had never seen land;<br /></span> <span class="i0">I wish I were a-chasing sperms<br /></span> <span class="i2">Abaft the nor'east coast of Greenland."<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">Yet on his latest cruise, 'tween whales<br /></span> <span class="i2">The Captain wrote a book most charming.<br /></span> <span class="i0">It's called&mdash;and it is having sales&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i2">"Some Practical Advice on Farming."<br /></span> </div></div> <h3><span class="smcap">T.H. Smith</span></h3> <div class="poem"><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">Tom Henry Smith I long have known<br /></span> <span class="i2">Although he really is a hermit&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i0">At least, Tom Henry lives alone,<br /></span> <span class="i2">And that's what people always term it.</span><span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_291" id="Page_291">[Pg 291]</SPAN></span><br /> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">Tom Henry never is annoyed<br /></span> <span class="i2">By fashion's change. He wears a collar<br /></span> <span class="i0">Constructed out of celluloid.<br /></span> <span class="i2">His hats ne'er cost above a dollar.<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">Tom loves about his room to mess,<br /></span> <span class="i2">And cook a sausage at the fireplace.<br /></span> <span class="i0">It doesn't serve to help his dress&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i2">Grease spatters over the entire place.<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">Tom Henry likes to read a book,<br /></span> <span class="i2">And writes a little for the papers,<br /></span> <span class="i0">But scarcely ever leaves his nook,<br /></span> <span class="i2">And takes no part in social capers.<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">Now Tom has penned a book himself.<br /></span> <span class="i2">I hope he'll never feel compunctions!<br /></span> <span class="i0">Its title is&mdash;it's on my shelf&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i2">"Pink Teas and Other Social Functions."<br /></span> </div></div> <h3><span class="smcap">Ruth Jones</span></h3> <div class="poem"><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">I've found the Joneses pleasant folk&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i2">I've watched them all their children fetch up.<br /></span> <span class="i0">Jones loves to have a quiet smoke&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i2"><i>She's</i> famous for tomato catchup.<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">Ruth is their eldest&mdash;now fifteen,<br /></span> <span class="i2">A tallish girl with pleasing features.<br /></span> <span class="i0">Each school-day morn she can be seen<br /></span> <span class="i2">As she trips by to meet her teachers.<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">A serious-minded miss, you'd say,<br /></span> <span class="i2">Not given much to school-girl follies.<br /></span> <span class="i0">She still sometimes will slip away<br /></span> <span class="i2">To spend a half-hour with her dollies.</span><span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_292" id="Page_292">[Pg 292]</SPAN></span><br /> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">She's learned to sweep, to sew, to bake&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i2">She's quite a helpmate to her mother.<br /></span> <span class="i0">On Saturday she loves to take<br /></span> <span class="i2">The go-cart out with little brother.<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">At writing now she bids for fame&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i2">Her book a great success is reckoned.<br /></span> <span class="i0">"By Right of Flashing Sword," its name,<br /></span> <span class="i2">A strong romance of James the Second.<br /></span> <span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_293" id="Page_293">[Pg 293]</SPAN></span></div></div> <hr style="width: 65%;" /> <h2>THE LOST WORD</h2> <h3>BY JOHN PAUL</h3> <div class="poem"><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">Seated one day at the typewriter,<br /></span> <span class="i2">I was weary of a's and e's,<br /></span> <span class="i0">And my fingers wandered wildly,<br /></span> <span class="i2">Over the consonant keys.<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">I know not what I was writing,<br /></span> <span class="i2">With that thing so like a pen;<br /></span> <span class="i0">But I struck one word astounding&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i2">Unknown to the speech of men.<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">It flooded the sense of my verses,<br /></span> <span class="i2">Like the break of a tinker's dam,<br /></span> <span class="i0">And I felt as one feels when the printer<br /></span> <span class="i2">Of your "infinite calm" makes clam.<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">It mixed up s's and x's<br /></span> <span class="i2">Like an alphabet coming to strife.<br /></span> <span class="i0">It seemed the discordant echo<br /></span> <span class="i2">Of a row between husband and wife.<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">It brought a perplexed meaning<br /></span> <span class="i2">Into my perfect piece,<br /></span> <span class="i0">And set the machinery creaking<br /></span> <span class="i2">As though it were scant of grease.</span><span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_294" id="Page_294">[Pg 294]</SPAN></span><br /> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">I have tried, but I try it vainly,<br /></span> <span class="i2">The one last word to divine<br /></span> <span class="i0">Which came from the keys of my typewriter<br /></span> <span class="i2">And so would pass as mine.<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">It may be some other typewriter<br /></span> <span class="i2">Will produce that word again,<br /></span> <span class="i0">It may be, but only for others&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i2"><i>I</i> shall write henceforth with a pen.<br /></span> <span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_295" id="Page_295">[Pg 295]</SPAN></span></div></div> <hr style="width: 65%;" /> <h2>THE DUTCHMAN WHO HAD THE "SMALL POX"</h2> <h3>BY HENRY P. LELAND</h3> <p>Very dry, indeed, is the drive from Blackberry to Squash Point,&mdash;dry even for New Jersey; and when you remember that it's fifty miles between the two towns, its division into five drinks seems very natural. When you are packed, three on one narrow seat, in a Jersey stage, it is necessary.</p> <p>A Jersey stage! It is not on record, but when Dante winds up his Tenth "Canter" into the Inferno with&mdash;</p> <div class="poem"><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">Each, as his back was laden, came indeed<br /></span> <span class="i0">Or more or less contracted; and it seemed<br /></span> <span class="i0">As he who showed most patience in his look,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Wailing, exclaimed, "I can endure no more!"<br /></span> </div></div> <p>the conclusion that he alluded to a crowded Jersey stage-load is irresistible. A man with long legs, on a back seat, in one of these vehicles, suffers like a snipe shut up in a snuff-box. For this reason, the long-legged man should sit on the front seat with the driver; there, like the hen-turkey who tried to sit on a hundred eggs, he can "spread himself." The writer sat alongside the driver one morning, just at break of day, as the stage drove out of Blackberry: he was a through passenger to Squash Point. It was a very cold morning. In order to break the ice for a conversation, he praised the fine points of an off horse. The driver thawed:<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_296" id="Page_296">[Pg 296]</SPAN></span></p> <p>"Ya-as; she's a goot hoss, und I knows how to trive him!" It was evidently a case of mixed breed.</p> <p>"Where is Wood, who used to drive this stage?"</p> <p>"He be's lait up mit ter rummatiz sence yesterweek, und I trives for him. So&mdash;" I went on reading a newspaper: a fellow-passenger, on a back seat, not having the fear of murdered English on his hands, coaxed the Dutch driver into a long conversation, much to the delight of a very pretty Jersey-blue belle, who laughed so merrily that it was contagious; and in a few minutes, from being like unto a conventicle, we were all as wide awake as one of Christy's audiences. By sunrise we were in excellent spirits, up to all sorts of fun; and when, a little later on, our stage stopped at the first watering-place, the driver found himself the center of a group of treaters to the distilled "juice of apples." It is just as easy to say "apple-jack," and be done with it; but the writer, being very anxious to form a style, cribs from all quarters. The so oft-repeated expression "juice of the grape" has been for a long time on his hands, and, wishing to work it up, he would have done it in this case, only he fears the skepticism of his readers. By courtesy, they may wink at the poetical license of a reporter of a public dinner who calls turnip-juice and painted whisky "juice of the grape," but they would not allow the existence, for one minute, of such application to the liquors of a Jersey tavern. It's out of place.</p> <p>"Here's a package to leave at Mr. Scudder's, the third house on the left-hand side after you get into Jericho. What do you charge?" asked a man who seemed to know the driver.</p> <p>"Pout a leffy," answered he. Receiving the silver, he gathered up the reins, and put the square package in the stage-box. Just as he started the horses, he leaned his<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_297" id="Page_297">[Pg 297]</SPAN></span> head out of the stage, and, looking back to the man who gave him the package, shouted out the question:</p> <p>"Ter fird haus on ter lef hant out of Yeriko?" The man didn't hear him, but the driver was satisfied. On we went at a pretty good rate, considering how heavy the roads were. Another tavern, more watering, more apple-jack. Another long stretch of sand, and we were coming into Jericho.</p> <p>"Anypotty know ter Miss Scutter haus?" asked the driver, bracing his feet on the mail-bag which lay in front of him, and screwing his head round so as to face in. There seemed to be a consultation going on inside the stage.</p> <p>"I don't know nobody o' that name in Jericho. Do you, Lishe?" asked a weather-beaten-looking man, who evidently "went by water," of another one who apparently went the same way.</p> <p>"There wos ole Square Gow's da'ter, she marri'd a Scudder; moved up here some two years back. Come to think on't, guess she lives nigher to Glass-house," answered Lishe.</p> <p>The driver, finding he could get no light out of the passengers, seeing a tall, raw-boned woman washing some clothes in front of a house, and who flew out of sight as the stage flew in, handed me the reins as he jumped from his seat and chased the fugitive, hallooing,&mdash;</p> <p>"I'fe got der small pox, I'fe got der&mdash;" Here his voice was lost as he dashed into the open door of the house. But in a minute he reappeared, followed by a broom with an enraged woman annexed, and a loud voice shouting out,&mdash;</p> <p>"You git out of this! Clear yourself, quicker! I ain't goin' to have you diseasin' honest folks, ef you have got the smallpox."<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_298" id="Page_298">[Pg 298]</SPAN></span></p> <p>"I dells you I'fe got der small pox. Ton't you versteh? der SMALL POX!" This time he shouted it out in capital letters!</p> <p>"Clear out! I'll call the men-folks ef you don't clear;" and at once she shouted, in a tip-top voice, "Ike, you Ike, where air you?"</p> <p>Ike made his appearance on the full run.</p> <p>"W-w-what's the matter, mother?"&mdash;<i>Miss</i> Scudder his mother! I should have been shocked, as I was on my first visit to New Jersey, if I had not had a key to this. "That is a very pretty girl," I said on that occasion to a Jersey-man; "who is she?"&mdash;"She's old <i>Miss</i> Perrine's da'ter," was the reply. I looked at the innocent victim of man's criminal conduct with commiseration. "What a pity!" I remarked.</p> <p>"Not such a very great pity," said Jersey, eying me very severely. "I reckon old man Perrine's got as big a cedar-swamp as you, or I either, would like to own."</p> <p>"Her grandfather you speak of?"</p> <p>"No, I don't: I'm talking 'bout her father,&mdash;he that married Abe Simm's da'ter and got a power of land by it; and that gal, their da'ter, one of these days will step right into them swamps."</p> <p>"Oh," I replied, "<i>Mrs.</i> Perrine's daughter," accenting the "Missis!"</p> <p>"Mussus or Miss, it's all the same in Jersey," he answered.</p> <p>Knowing this, Ike's appeal was intelligible. To proceed with our story, the driver, very angry by this time, shouted,&mdash;</p> <p>"I dells you oonst more for der last dime. I'fe got der small pox! unt Mishter Ellis he gifs me a leffy to gif der small pox to Miss Scutter; unt if dat vrow is Miss Scutter, I bromised to gif her ter small pox."<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_299" id="Page_299">[Pg 299]</SPAN></span></p> <p>It was <i>Miss</i> Scudder, and I explained to her that it was a <i>small box</i> he had for her. The affair was soon settled as regarded its delivery, but not as regards the laughter and shouts of the occupants of the old stage-coach as we rolled away from Jericho. The driver joined in, although he had no earthly idea as to its cause, and added not a little to it by saying, in a triumphant tone of voice,&mdash;</p> <p>"I vos pound to gif ter olt voomans ter small pox!"<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_300" id="Page_300">[Pg 300]</SPAN></span></p> <hr style="width: 65%;" /> <h2>WALK</h2> <h3>BY WILLIAM DEVERE</h3> <div class="poem"><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">Up the dusty road from Denver town<br /></span> <span class="i0">To where the mines their treasures hide,<br /></span> <span class="i0">The road is long, and many miles,<br /></span> <span class="i0">The golden styre and town divide.<br /></span> <span class="i0">Along this road one summer's day,<br /></span> <span class="i0">There toiled a tired man,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Begrimed with dust, the weary way<br /></span> <span class="i0">He cussed, as some folks can.<br /></span> <span class="i0">The stranger hailed a passing team<br /></span> <span class="i0">That slowly dragged its load along;<br /></span> <span class="i0">His hail roused up the teamster old,<br /></span> <span class="i0">And checked his merry song.<br /></span> <span class="i0">"Say-y, stranger!" "Wal, whoap."<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">"Ken I walk behind your load<br /></span> <span class="i0">A spell in this road?"<br /></span> <span class="i0">"Wal, no, yer can't walk, but git<br /></span> <span class="i0">Up on this seat an' ride; git up hyer."<br /></span> <span class="i0">"Nop, that ain't what I want,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Fur it's in yer dust, that's like a smudge,<br /></span> <span class="i0">I want to trudge, for I desarve it."<br /></span> <span class="i0">"Wal, pards, I ain't no hog, an' I don't<br /></span> <span class="i0">Own this road, afore nor 'hind.<br /></span> <span class="i0">So jest git right in the dust<br /></span> <span class="i0">An' walk, if that's the way yer 'clined.</span><span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_301" id="Page_301">[Pg 301]</SPAN></span><br /> <span class="i0">Gee up, ger lang!" the driver said.<br /></span> <span class="i0">The creaking wagon moved amain,<br /></span> <span class="i0">While close behind the stranger trudged,<br /></span> <span class="i0">And clouds of dust rose up again.<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">The teamster heard the stranger talk<br /></span> <span class="i0">As if two trudged behind his van,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Yet, looking 'round, could only spy<br /></span> <span class="i0">A single lonely man.<br /></span> <span class="i0">Yet heard the teamster words like these<br /></span> <span class="i0">Come from the dust as from a cloud,<br /></span> <span class="i0">For the weary traveler spoke his mind.<br /></span> <span class="i0">His thoughts he uttered loud,<br /></span> <span class="i0">And this the burden of his talk:<br /></span> <span class="i0">"Walk, now, you &mdash;&mdash;, walk!<br /></span> <span class="i0">Not the way you went to Denver?<br /></span> <span class="i0">Walk, &mdash;&mdash; &mdash;&mdash;! Jest walk!<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">"Went up in the mines an' made yer stake,<br /></span> <span class="i0">'Nuff to take yer back to ther state<br /></span> <span class="i0">Whar yer wur born.<br /></span> <span class="i0">Whar'n hell's yer corn?<br /></span> <span class="i0">Wal, walk, you &mdash;&mdash;, walk!<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">"Dust in yer eyes, dust in yer nose,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Dust down yer throat, and thick<br /></span> <span class="i0">On yer clothes. Can't hardly talk?<br /></span> <span class="i0">I know it, but walk, you &mdash;&mdash;, walk!<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">"What did yer do with all yer tin?<br /></span> <span class="i0">Ya-s, blew every cent of it in;<br /></span> <span class="i0">Got drunk, got sober, got drunk agin.<br /></span> <span class="i0">Wal, walk, &mdash;&mdash;! Jest walk.</span><span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_302" id="Page_302">[Pg 302]</SPAN></span><br /> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">"What did yer do? What didn't yer do?<br /></span> <span class="i0">Why, when ye war thar, yer gold-dust flew,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Yer thought it fine to keep op'nin' wine.<br /></span> <span class="i0">Now walk, you &mdash;&mdash;, walk.<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">"Stop to drink? What&mdash;water?<br /></span> <span class="i0">Why, thar<br /></span> <span class="i0">Water with you warn't anywhere.<br /></span> <span class="i0">'Twas wine, Extra Dry. Oh,<br /></span> <span class="i0">You flew high&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i0">Now walk, you &mdash;&mdash;, walk.<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">"Chokes yer, this dust? Wal, that<br /></span> <span class="i0">Ain't the wust,<br /></span> <span class="i0">When yer get back whar the<br /></span> <span class="i0">Diggins are<br /></span> <span class="i0">No pick, no shovel, no pan;<br /></span> <span class="i0">Wal, yer a healthy man,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Walk&mdash;jest walk."<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">The fools don't all go to Denver town,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Nor do they all from the mines come down.<br /></span> <span class="i0">'Most all of us have in our day&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i0">In some sort of shape, some kind of way&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i0">Painted the town with the old stuff,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Dipped in stocks or made some bluff,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Mixed wines, old and new,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Got caught in wedlock by a shrew,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Stayed out all night, tight,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Rolled home in the morning light,<br /></span> <span class="i0">With crumpled tie and torn clawhammer,<br /></span> <span class="i0">'N' woke up next day with a katzenjammer,<br /></span> <span class="i0">And walked, oh &mdash;&mdash;, how we walked.</span><span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_303" id="Page_303">[Pg 303]</SPAN></span><br /> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">Now, don't try to yank every bun,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Don't try to have all the fun,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Don't think that you know it all,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Don't think real estate won't fall,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Don't try to bluff on an ace,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Don't get stuck on a pretty face,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Don't believe every jay's talk&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i0">For if you do you can bet you'll walk!<br /></span> <span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_304" id="Page_304">[Pg 304]</SPAN></span></div></div> <hr style="width: 65%;" /> <h2>MR. DOOLEY ON GOLD-SEEKING</h2> <h3>BY FINLEY PETER DUNNE</h3> <p>"Well, sir," said Mr. Hennessy, "that Alaska's th' gr-reat place. I thought 'twas nawthin' but an iceberg with a few seals roostin' on it, an' wan or two hundherd Ohio politicians that can't be killed on account iv th' threaty iv Pawrs. But here they tell me 'tis fairly smothered in goold. A man stubs his toe on th' ground, an' lifts th' top off iv a goold mine. Ye go to bed at night, an' wake up with goold fillin' in ye'er teeth."</p> <p>"Yes," said Mr. Dooley, "Clancy's son was in here this mornin', an' he says a frind iv his wint to sleep out in th' open wan night, an' whin he got up his pants assayed four ounces iv goold to th' pound, an' his whiskers panned out as much as thirty dollars net."</p> <p>"If I was a young man an' not tied down here," said Mr. Hennessy, "I'd go there: I wud so."</p> <p>"I wud not," said Mr. Dooley. "Whin I was a young man in th' ol' counthry, we heerd th' same story about all America. We used to set be th' tur-rf fire o' nights, kickin' our bare legs on th' flure an' wishin' we was in New York, where all ye had to do was to hold ye'er hat an' th' goold guineas'd dhrop into it. An' whin I got to be a man, I come over here with a ham and a bag iv oatmeal, as sure that I'd return in a year with money enough to dhrive me own ca-ar as I was that me name was Martin Dooley. An' that was a cinch.</p> <p>"But, faith, whin I'd been here a week, I seen that<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_305" id="Page_305">[Pg 305]</SPAN></span> there was nawthin' but mud undher th' pavement,&mdash;I larned that be means iv a pick-axe at tin shillin's th' day,&mdash;an' that, though there was plenty iv goold, thim that had it were froze to it; an' I come west, still lookin' f'r mines. Th' on'y mine I sthruck at Pittsburgh was a hole f'r sewer pipe. I made it. Siven shillin's th' day. Smaller thin New York, but th' livin' was cheaper, with Mon'gahela rye at five a throw, put ye'er hand around th' glass.</p> <p>"I was still dreamin' goold, an' I wint down to Saint Looey. Th' nearest I come to a fortune there was findin' a quarther on th' sthreet as I leaned over th' dashboord iv a car to whack th' off mule. Whin I got to Chicago, I looked around f'r the goold mine. They was Injuns here thin. But they wasn't anny mines I cud see. They was mud to be shovelled an' dhrays to be dhruv an' beats to be walked. I choose th' dhray; f'r I was niver cut out f'r a copper, an' I'd had me fill iv excavatin'. An' I dhruv th' dhray till I wint into business.</p> <p>"Me experyence with goold minin' is it's always in th' nex' county. If I was to go to Alaska, they'd tell me iv th' finds in Seeberya. So I think I'll stay here. I'm a silver man, annyhow; an' I'm contint if I can see goold wanst a year, whin some prominent citizen smiles over his newspaper. I'm thinkin' that ivry man has a goold mine undher his own dure-step or in his neighbor's pocket at th' farthest."</p> <p>"Well, annyhow," said Mr. Hennessy, "I'd like to kick up th' sod, an' find a ton iv gold undher me fut."</p> <p>"What wud ye do if ye found it?" demanded Mr. Dooley.</p> <p>"I&mdash;I dinnaw," said Mr. Hennessy, whose dreaming had not gone this far. Then, recovering himself, he exclaimed with great enthusiasm, "I'd throw up me job an'&mdash;an' live like a prince."<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_306" id="Page_306">[Pg 306]</SPAN></span></p> <p>"I tell ye what ye'd do," said Mr. Dooley. "Ye'd come back here an' sthrut up an' down th' sthreet with ye'er thumbs in ye'er armpits; an' ye'd dhrink too much, an' ride in sthreet ca-ars. Thin ye'd buy foldin' beds an' piannies, an' start a reel estate office. Ye'd be fooled a good deal an' lose a lot iv ye'er money, an' thin ye'd tighten up. Ye'd be in a cold fear night an' day that ye'd lose ye'er fortune. Ye'd wake up in th' middle iv th' night, dhreamin' that ye was back at th' gas-house with ye'er money gone. Ye'd be prisidint iv a charitable society. Ye'd have to wear ye'er shoes in th' house, an' ye'er wife'd have ye around to rayciptions an' dances. Ye'd move to Mitchigan Avnoo, an' ye'd hire a coachman that'd laugh at ye. Ye'er boys'd be joods an' ashamed iv ye, an' ye'd support ye'er daughters' husbands. Ye'd rackrint ye'er tinants an' lie about ye'er taxes. Ye'd go back to Ireland on a visit, an' put on airs with ye'er cousin Mike. Ye'd be a mane, close-fisted, onscrupulous ol' curmudgeon; an', whin ye'd die, it'd take haf ye'er fortune f'r rayqueems to put ye r-right. I don't want ye iver to speak to me whin ye get rich, Hinnissy."</p> <p>"I won't," said Mr. Hennessy.<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_307" id="Page_307">[Pg 307]</SPAN></span></p> <hr style="width: 65%;" /> <h2>LOVE SONNETS OF A HOODLUM</h2> <h3>BY WALLACE IRWIN</h3> <h3>I</h3> <div class="poem"><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">Say, will she treat me white, or throw me down,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Give me the glassy glare, or welcome hand,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Shovel me dirt, or treat me on the grand,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Knife me, or make me think I own the town?<br /></span> <span class="i0">Will she be on the level, do me brown,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Or will she jolt me lightly on the sand,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Leaving poor Willie froze to beat the band,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Limp as your grandma's Mother Hubbard gown?<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">I do not know, nor do I give a whoop,<br /></span> <span class="i0">But this I know: if she is so inclined<br /></span> <span class="i0">She can come play with me on our back stoop,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Even in office hours, I do not mind&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i0">In fact I know I'm nice and good and ready<br /></span> <span class="i0">To get an option on her as my steady.<br /></span> </div></div> <h3>VIII</h3> <div class="poem"><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">I sometimes think that I am not so good,<br /></span> <span class="i0">That there are foxier, warmer babes than I,<br /></span> <span class="i0">That Fate has given me the calm go-by<br /></span> <span class="i0">And my long suit is sawing mother's wood.<br /></span> <span class="i0">Then would I duck from under if I could,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Catch the hog special on the jump and fly<br /></span> <span class="i0">To some Goat Island planned by destiny<br /></span> <span class="i0">For dubs and has-beens and that solemn brood.</span><span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_308" id="Page_308">[Pg 308]</SPAN></span><br /> <span class="i0">But spite of bug-wheels in my cocoa tree,<br /></span> <span class="i0">The trade in lager beer is still a-humming,<br /></span> <span class="i0">A schooner can be purchased for a V<br /></span> <span class="i0">Or even grafted if you're fierce at bumming.<br /></span> <span class="i0">My finish then less clearly do I see,<br /></span> <span class="i0">For lo! I have another think a-coming.<br /></span> </div></div> <h3>IX</h3> <div class="poem"><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">Last night I tumbled off the water cart&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i0">It was a peacherino of a drunk;<br /></span> <span class="i0">I put the cocktail market on the punk<br /></span> <span class="i0">And tore up all the sidewalks from the start.<br /></span> <span class="i0">The package that I carried was a tart<br /></span> <span class="i0">That beat Vesuvius out for sizz and spunk,<br /></span> <span class="i0">And when they put me in my little bunk<br /></span> <span class="i0">You couldn't tell my jag and me apart.<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">Oh! would I were the ice man for a space,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Then might I cool this red-hot cocoanut,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Corral the jim-jam bugs that madly race<br /></span> <span class="i0">Around the eaves that from my forehead jut&mdash;<br /></span> <span class="i0">Or will a carpenter please come instead<br /></span> <span class="i0">And build a picket fence around my head?<br /></span> </div></div> <h3>XII</h3> <div class="poem"><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">Life is a combination hard to buck,<br /></span> <span class="i0">A proposition difficult to beat,<br /></span> <span class="i0">E'en though you get there Zaza with both feet,<br /></span> <span class="i0">In forty flickers, it's the same hard luck,<br /></span> <span class="i0">And you are up against it nip and tuck,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Shanghaied without a steady place to eat,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Guyed by the very copper on your beat<br /></span> <span class="i0">Who lays to jug you when you run amuck.</span><span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_309" id="Page_309">[Pg 309]</SPAN></span><br /> <span class="i0">O Life! you give Yours Truly quite a pain.<br /></span> <span class="i0">On the T square I do not like your style;<br /></span> <span class="i0">For you are playing favorites again<br /></span> <span class="i0">And you have got me handicapped a mile.<br /></span> <span class="i0">Avaunt, false Life, with all your pride and pelf:<br /></span> <span class="i0">Go take a running jump and chase yourself!<br /></span> </div></div> <h3>XIV</h3> <div class="poem"><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">O mommer! wasn't Mame a looty toot<br /></span> <span class="i0">Last night when at the Rainbow Social Club<br /></span> <span class="i0">She did the bunny hug with every scrub<br /></span> <span class="i0">From Hogan's Alley to the Dutchman's Boot,<br /></span> <span class="i0">While little Willie, like a plug-eared mute,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Papered the wall and helped absorb the grub,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Played nest-egg with the benches like a dub<br /></span> <span class="i0">When hot society was easy fruit!<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">Am I a turnip? On the strict Q.T.,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Why do my Trilbys get so ossified?<br /></span> <span class="i0">Why am I minus when it's up to me<br /></span> <span class="i0">To brace my Paris Pansy for a glide?<br /></span> <span class="i0">Once more my hoodoo's thrown the game and scored<br /></span> <span class="i0">A flock of zeros on my tally-board.<br /></span> </div></div> <h3>XXI</h3> <div class="poem"><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">At noon to-day Murphy and Mame were tied.<br /></span> <span class="i0">A gospel huckster did the referee,<br /></span> <span class="i0">And all the Drug Clerks' Union loped to see<br /></span> <span class="i0">The queen of Minnie Street become a bride,<br /></span> <span class="i0">And that bad actor, Murphy, by her side,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Standing where Yours Despondent ought to be.<br /></span> <span class="i0">I went to hang a smile in front of me,<br /></span> <span class="i0">But weeps were in my glimmers when I tried.</span><span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_310" id="Page_310">[Pg 310]</SPAN></span><br /> <span class="i0">The pastor murmured, "Two and two make one,"<br /></span> <span class="i0">And slipped a sixteen K on Mamie's grab;<br /></span> <span class="i0">And when the game was tied and all was done<br /></span> <span class="i0">The guests shied footwear at the bridal cab,<br /></span> <span class="i0">And Murphy's little gilt-roofed brother Jim<br /></span> <span class="i0">Snickered, "She's left her happy home for him."<br /></span> <span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_311" id="Page_311">[Pg 311]</SPAN></span></div></div> <hr style="width: 65%;" /> <h2>HOW "RUBY" PLAYED</h2> <h3>BY GEORGE W. BAGBY</h3> <p>(Jud Brownin, when visiting New York, goes to hear Rubinstein, and gives the following description of his playing.)</p> <p>Well, sir, he had the blamedest, biggest, catty-cornerdest pianner you ever laid eyes on; somethin' like a distracted billiard-table on three legs. The lid was hoisted, and mighty well it was. If it hadn't been, he'd 'a' tore the entire inside clean out and shattered 'em to the four winds of heaven.</p> <p><i>Played well?</i> You bet he did; but don't interrupt me. When he first sit down he 'peared to keer mighty little 'bout playin' and wisht he hadn't come. He tweedle-leedled a little on a treble, and twoodle-oodled some on the base,&mdash;just foolin' and boxin' the thing's jaws for bein' in his way. And I says to a man sittin' next to me, says I, "What sort of fool playin' is that?" And he says, "Heish!" But presently his hands commenced chasin' one another up and down the keys, like a passel of rats scamperin' through a garret very swift. Parts of it was sweet, though, and reminded me of a sugar squirrel turnin' the wheel of a candy cage.</p> <p>"Now," I says to my neighbor, "he's showin' off. He thinks he's a-doin' of it, but he ain't got no idee, no plan of nothin'. If he'd play me a tune of some kind or other, I'd&mdash;"</p> <p>But my neighbor says, "Heish!" very impatient.</p> <p>I was just about to git up and go home, bein' tired of<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_312" id="Page_312">[Pg 312]</SPAN></span> that foolishness, when I heard a little bird waking up away off in the woods and call sleepy-like to his mate, and I looked up and see that Rubin was beginning to take some interest in his business, and I sit down again. It was the peep of day. The light came faint from the east, the breezes blowed gentle and fresh, some more birds waked up in the orchard, then some more in the trees near the house, and all begun singin' together. People began to stir, and the gal opened the shutters. Just then the first beam of the sun fell upon the blossoms a leetle more, and it techt the roses on the bushes, and the next thing it was broad day; the sun fairly blazed, the birds sung like they'd split their little throats; all the leaves was movin', and flashin' diamonds of dew, and the whole wide world was bright and happy as a king. Seemed to me like there was a good breakfast in every house in the land, and not a sick child or woman anywhere. It was a fine mornin'.</p> <p>And I says to my neighbor, "That's music, that is."</p> <p>But he glared at me like he'd like to cut my throat.</p> <p>Presently the wind turned; it begun to thicken up, and a kind of gray mist came over things; I got low-spirited directly. Then a silver rain began to fall. I could see the drops touch the ground; some flashed up like long pearl ear-rings, and the rest rolled away like round rubies. It was pretty, but melancholy. Then the pearls gathered themselves into long strands and necklaces, and then they melted into thin silver streams, running between golden gravels, and then the streams joined each other at the bottom of the hill, and made a brook that flowed silent, except that you could kinder see the music, especially when the bushes on the banks moved as the music went along down the valley. I could smell the flowers in the meadow. But the sun didn't shine, nor the birds sing: it was a foggy day, but not cold.<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_313" id="Page_313">[Pg 313]</SPAN></span></p> <p>The most curious thing was the little white angel-boy, like you see in pictures, that run ahead of the music brook and led it on, and on, away out of the world, where no man ever was, certain, I could see the boy just as plain as I see you. Then the moonlight came, without any sunset, and shone on the graveyards, where some few ghosts lifted their hands and went over the wall, and between the black, sharp-top trees splendid marble houses rose up, with fine ladies in the lit-up windows, and men that loved 'em, but could never get anigh 'em, who played on guitars under the trees, and made me that miserable I could have cried, because I wanted to love somebody, I don't know who, better than the men with the guitars did.</p> <p>Then the sun went down, it got dark, the wind moaned and wept like a lost child for its dead mother, and I could 'a' got up then and there and preached a better sermon than any I ever listened to. There wasn't a thing in the world left to live for, not a blame thing, and yet I didn't want the music to stop one bit. It was happier to be miserable than to be happy without being miserable. I couldn't understand it. I hung my head and pulled out my handkerchief, and blowed my nose loud to keep me from cryin'. My eyes is weak anyway; I didn't want anybody to be a-gazin' at me a-sniv'lin', and it's nobody's business what I do with my nose. It's mine. But some several glared at me mad as blazes. Then, all of a sudden, old Rubin changed his tune. He ripped out and he rared, he tipped and he tared, he pranced and he charged like the grand entry at a circus. 'Peared to me that all the gas in the house was turned on at once, things got so bright, and I hilt up my head, ready to look any man in the face, and not afraid of nothin'. It was a circus and a brass band and a big ball all goin' on at the same time. He lit into them keys like a thousand of brick; he give 'em<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_314" id="Page_314">[Pg 314]</SPAN></span> no rest day or night; he set every livin' joint in me a-goin', and, not bein' able to stand it no longer, I jumped spang onto my seat, and jest hollered,&mdash;</p> <p><i>"Go it, my Rube!"</i></p> <p>Every blame man, woman and child in the house riz on me, and shouted, "Put him out! put him out!"</p> <p>"Put your great-grandmother's grizzly gray greenish cat into the middle of next month!" I says. "Tech me if you dare! I paid my money, and you jest come anigh me!"</p> <p>With that some several policemen run up, and I had to simmer down. But I would 'a' fit any fool that laid hands on me, for I was bound to hear Ruby out or die.</p> <p>He had changed his tune again. He hop-light ladies and tip-toed fine from end to end of the key-board. He played soft and low and solemn. I heard the church bells over the hills. The candles of heaven was lit, one by one; I saw the stars rise. The great organ of eternity began to play from the world's end to the world's end, and all the angels went to prayers.... Then the music changed to water, full of feeling that couldn't be thought, and began to drop&mdash;drip, drop&mdash;drip, drop, clear and sweet, like tears of joy falling into a lake of glory. It was sweeter than that. It was as sweet as a sweet-heart sweetened with white sugar mixed with powdered silver and seed-diamonds. It was too sweet. I tell you the audience cheered. Rubin he kinder bowed, like he wanted to say, "Much obleeged, but I'd rather you wouldn't interrup' me."</p> <p>He stopped a moment or two to catch breath. Then he got mad. He run his fingers through his hair, he shoved up his sleeve, he opened his coat-tails a leetle further, he drug up his stool, he leaned over, and, sir, he just went for that old pianner. He slapped her face, he boxed her jaws, he pulled her nose, he pinched her ears, and he<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_315" id="Page_315">[Pg 315]</SPAN></span> scratched her cheeks, until she fairly yelled. He knocked her down and he stamped on her shameful. She bellowed like a bull, she bleated like a calf, she howled like a hound, she squealed like a pig, she shrieked like a rat, and <i>then</i> he wouldn't let her up. He run a quarter stretch down the low grounds of the base, till he got clean in the bowels of the earth, and you heard thunder galloping after thunder through the hollows and caves of perdition; and then he fox-chased his right hand with his left till he got 'way out of the treble into the clouds, whar the notes was finer than the p'ints of cambric needles, and you couldn't hear nothin' but the shadders of 'em. And <i>then</i> he wouldn't let the old pianner go. He for'ard two'd, he crost over first gentleman, he chassade right and left, back to your places, he all hands'd aroun', ladies to the right, promenade all, in and out, here and there, back and forth, up and down, perpetual motion, double twisted and turned and tacked and tangled into forty-eleven thousand double bow-knots.</p> <p>By jinks! it was a mixtery. And then he wouldn't let the old pianner go. He fetcht up his right wing, he fetcht up his left wing, he fetcht up his center, he fetcht up his reserves. He fired by file, he fired by platoons, by company, by regiments, and by brigades. He opened his cannon,&mdash;siege-guns down thar, Napoleons here, twelve-pounders yonder,&mdash;big guns, little guns, middle-sized guns, round shot, shells, shrapnels, grape, canister, mortar, mines and magazines, every livin' battery and bomb a-goin' at the same time. The house trembled, the lights danced, the walls shuk, the floor come up, the ceilin' come down, the sky split, the ground rocked&mdash;heavens and earth, creation, sweet potatoes, Moses, ninepences, glory, tenpenny nails, Samson in a 'simmon-tree, Tump Tompson in a tumbler-cart, roodle-oodle-oodle-oodle-ruddle-uddle-uddle-uddle&mdash;raddle-addle-eedle&mdash;riddle-iddle-iddle-iddle&mdash;reedle-eedle-eedle-eedle&mdash;p-r-r-r-rlank! Bang!!! lang! perlang! p-r-r-r-r-r!! Bang!!!!<span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_316" id="Page_316">[Pg 316]</SPAN></span></p> <p>With that bang! he lifted himself bodily into the a'r, and he come down with his knees, his ten fingers, his ten toes, his elbows, and his nose, striking every single solitary key on the pianner at the same time. The thing busted and went off into seventeen hundred and fifty-seven thousand five hundred and forty-two hemi-demi-semi-quivers, and I know'd no mo'.</p> <p>When I come to, I were under ground about twenty foot, in a place they call Oyster Bay, treatin' a Yankee that I never laid eyes on before and never expect to ag'in. Day was breakin' by the time I got to the St. Nicholas Hotel, and I pledge you my word I did not know my name. The man asked me the number of my room, and I told him, "Hot music on the half-shell for two!"</p> <hr style="width: 65%;" /> <h2>PLAGIARISM</h2> <h3>BY JOHN B. TABB</h3> <div class="poem"><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">If Poe from Pike The Raven stole,<br /></span> <span class="i3">As his accusers say,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Then to embody Adam's soul,<br /></span> <span class="i2">God <i>plagiarised</i> the clay.<br /></span> <span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_317" id="Page_317">[Pg 317]</SPAN></span></div></div> <hr style="width: 65%;" /> <h2>GO LIGHTLY, GAL</h2> <h3>(THE CAKE-WALK)</h3> <h3>BY ANNE VIRGINIA CULBERTSON</h3> <div class="poem"><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">Sweetes' li'l honey in all dis lan',<br /></span> <span class="i0">Come erlong yer an' gimme yo' han',<br /></span> <span class="i8">Go lightly, gal, go lightly!<br /></span> <span class="i0">Cawn all shucked an' de barn flo' clear,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Come erlong, come erlong, come erlong, my dear,<br /></span> <span class="i8">Go lightly, gal, go lightly!<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">Fiddles dey callin' us high an' fine,<br /></span> <span class="i0">"Time fer de darnsin', come an' jine,"<br /></span> <span class="i8">Go lightly, gal, go lightly!<br /></span> <span class="i0">My pooty li'l honey, but you is sweet!<br /></span> <span class="i0">An' hit's clap yo' han's an' shake yo' feet,<br /></span> <span class="i8">Go lightly, gal, go lightly!<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">Hit's cut yo' capers all down de line,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Den mek yo' manners an' tiptoe fine,<br /></span> <span class="i8">Go lightly, gal, go lightly!<br /></span> <span class="i0">Oh, hit's whu'll yo' pardners roun' an' roun',<br /></span> <span class="i0">Twel you hyst dey feet clean off de groun',<br /></span> <span class="i8">Go lightly, gal, go lightly!<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">Oh, hit's tu'n an' twis' all roun' de flo',<br /></span> <span class="i0">Fling out yo' feet behime, befo',<br /></span> <span class="i8">Go lightly, gal, go lightly!<br /></span> <span class="i0">Gre't Lan' o' Goshen! but you is spry!<br /></span> <span class="i0">Kain't none er de urr gals spring so high,<br /></span> <span class="i8">Go lightly, gal, go lightly!</span><span class='pagenum'><SPAN name="Page_318" id="Page_318">[Pg 318]</SPAN></span><br /> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">Oh, roll yo' eyes an' wag yo' haid<br /></span> <span class="i0">An' shake yo' bones twel you nigh most daid,<br /></span> <span class="i8">Go lightly, gal, go lightly!<br /></span> <span class="i0">Doan' talk ter me 'bout gittin' yo' bref,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Gwine darnse dis out ef hit cause my def!<br /></span> <span class="i8">Go lightly, gal, go lightly!<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">Um-humph! done darnse all de urr folks down!<br /></span> <span class="i0">Skip erlong, honey, jes' one mo' roun'!<br /></span> <span class="i8">Go lightly, gal, go lightly!<br /></span> <span class="i0">Fiddles done played twel de strings all break!<br /></span> <span class="i0">Come erlong, honey, jes' one mo' shake,<br /></span> <span class="i8">Go lightly, gal, go lightly!<br /></span> </div><div class="stanza"> <span class="i0">Now teck my arm an' perawd all roun',<br /></span> <span class="i0">So dey see whar de <i>sho'-nuff</i> darnsers foun',<br /></span> <span class="i8">Go lightly, gal, go lightly!<br /></span> <span class="i0">Den gimme yo' han' an' we quit dish yer,<br /></span> <span class="i0">Come erlong, come erlong, come erlong, my dear,<br /></span> <span class="i8">Go lightly, gal, go lightly!<br /></span> <span class='pagenum'>
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