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“He says he'll be here at 12:30,” said Ben, rejoining Uncle Jack.
“Thank you, Ben. Now there is plenty of time for a swim, children,” said Uncle Jack, leading the way to the bath house
“Well,” said the Doctor, as they gathered on the porch after luncheon, “I am very sorry to have you leave Chatham. I shall certainly miss you when you go.”
“And we are sorry to go, Doctor, and shall certainly miss you greatly. We cannot thank you enough for the many courtesies you have shown
“The pleasure is all on my side,” replied the Doctor, smiling. “See,” he continued, pointing seaward, “there go the United States battleships on their way to Provincetown Harbor."
“Yes,” said Uncle Jack, “I believe that the fleet is to assemble there to be reviewed by the President to-morrow.”
“Oh, then we shall see it all, sha'n't we, Uncle Jack?” interrogated May.
“Yes, if we get there in time,” was the reply.
“I have an idea,” exclaimed the Doctor. “Let me drive you over in my car to-morrow morning. It's only thirty-five or thirty-six miles. You can send your baggage to Boston by express.”
“That's a good idea, Doctor, and we thank you very much,” replied Uncle Jack.
“Doctor," asked Belle, at this point, “who is that old, old man walking slowly along the beach? I have noticed him before, and meant to ask you about him, but I forgot.”
“Oh!” replied the Doctor, “I think he must be
THE LAST LEAF."
With his cane.
They say that in his prime,
Cut him down,
The mossy marbles rest
In their bloom,
On the tomb.
My grandmamma has said, -
Long ago, —
In the snow.
But now his nose is thin,
Like a staff,
In his laugh.
I know it is a sin
At him here;
And if I should live to be
In the spring,
— Oliver Wendell Holmes.
“Did you know Oliver Wendell Holmes, Doctor?” asked Ben, as the Doctor finished.
“Yes. I met him in Boston several times. He was very genial and very witty. I heard a good story about him recently,” replied the Doctor.
“Dr. Holmes, upon going to dine with a Boston neighbor, was met by his hostess who, with an apologetic air, said:
“Doctor, I could not get another man. So we are just four women, and you will have to take us all in to dinner.”
“To be forewarned is to be four-armed,' he said with a bow.”
“That was a witty reply,” said Uncle Jack, “and a clever use of the old adage. Do you remember one of his fine poems, — the song written in 1836 for the centennial celebration of Harvard University?”