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the road, and so weak and shakin' that do b’lieve they was jest what you mean, , a baby could ha' made him ashamed. for I'd often heard grandfather tell When the pricession was goin' out o’how Nancy Jelliker was drownded for sight at the turn down the road, he witchery, and it all happened jest the moved round so’s he was lookin' at the way Jasper saw. There, the fire is

, pond agen, and there it was, all ice, and a’most gone out! Why ain't ye spryer nothin' but snow and bare trees all a-puttin' on wood ?

When I was a round it, but before he could get his young gal like you, and Jasper was—" eyes off agen a figger come up through Oh, aunty, do tell me why you the ice and rose in the air and floated didn't marry Jasper 9 I'm sure he must around and pointed 'way down the have liked you, and I think you liked road where the pr'cession had gone, him, too—just a little, aunty, though and then sunk back through the ice, you hav'n't said so yet.” and Jasper didn't see it no

“Pshaw, child! What's the When it was floatin' in the air it o'talkin' 'bout things that happened 80 'peared to move round on a broom- long, long before your time! I've aʼmost stick, or suthin', though Jasper couldn't forgot just how it was, but I s'pose I see that quite plain, and it was dressed was foolish, like most young things jest like the old woman that was is, and when Jasper spoke to me, throwed into the pond right there all bashful and awkward like, I before his eyes."

sorter laughed it off and said it was Sophia had moved close to her aged ridic'lous, and p’rhaps hinted suthin' relative while the foregoing narrative about havin' plenty o chances when was in progress, and when the old I wanted 'em; and it all ended by lady had concluded she asked in a low, him gettin' angry and then I got angry tremulous voice,

too, and he went away to some far “ And Jasper-how did he ever get place, vowin' there was no one to be away from that horrid place ?trusted about anything.”

“That, dear, I dunno, for certain, “And do you know what became of but when the poor creetur come into him after that, aunty ?our house that Chris'mas night, he “No, dear, I never heer'd nothing certingly did look aʼmost scar't to death, more about him; but when Chris’mas as I told ye at the start, and father time comes'round I always think of that wouldn't let him go back that night, for Chris’mas night, and 'pear to see him he didn't 'pear to have any sperit jest as he looked then, all scart and more 'n a sick kitten."

fluttered, a-tellin' us what happened Sophia was silent for a short time, when he was comin' by Jelliker's Pond. and then again addressing the venerable Sophia Ann, don't you ever make a Miss Jerusha, she said,

young man go 'way to some strange “But, Aunt Jerusha, you don't real- place, thinkin' ye don't care anything ly believe those awful things he saw about him, if ye do; for you're sure were

to feel

when it's too late. Now,

sorry “Now there, Sophia Ann," ex- dear, it's bedtime and to-morrer will be claimed the old lady, bristling up, “I| Chris’mas Day.




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Said John, as he looked at our socks hung asunder,
"How is it that Santa Claus don't often blunder,
For how can he know good boys' stockings,
When one's like another, I wonder ?”

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I gave up the riddle, and without replying
Drowsed off into sleep, and left Johnny a-trying
To find how St. Nick was so clever,
For his shrewdness there was no denying.

But scarcely a moment or two had I slumbered,
When up from the lawn, in the moonlight, there lumbered
A sleigh that would do for Goliath,
With a dozen of toyshops encumbered.

It stopped at the door, and there was such a knocking,
It seemed that the house went a-swinging and rocking.
For who should it be but St. Nicholas
With his gifts to cram into each stocking.

To say he intruded I never pretended,
When he came to the spot where our socks were suspended,
But maintained a most quiet demeanor
Till down to the ground he descended.

Then I peeped through my eyelids and found the sun beaming,
The shutters were open, the windows were gleaming;
For sly Santa Claus had brought daylight,
And surprised all the family dreaming.

Our stockings were still from the mantle suspended,
From Johnny's a pop-gun and scabbard extended,
But in mine–0 unfeeling St. Nicholas-
A coal and potato were blended.

Then I rose from my bed and I paced o'er the floor,
Examined the gifts he had left me, once more,
And sat down in great tribulation-
But started—to hear Johnny snore.

I looked—surely spirits were guarding his bed,
For he smiled in his sleep, though he looked awful red-
But ha! what was bulging the pillow ?
'Twas a Jumping-Jack under his head.

That brought to my mind a most novel conjecture,
On which I read Johnny a practical lecture,
And uttered some pointed allusions
As to altering his head's architecture.

Then agog with excitement, I sought to explore,

And the more I examined I found all the more,
Till St. Nick stood acquitted. And Johnny ?
Well-I judge that he felt rather sore.


To comprehend a man's life, it is in a drunken dream of poetic inspiranecessary to know not merely what he tion, but work and grow up to them. does, but also what he purposely leaves It is common, I know, to point to some undone. There is a limit to the work lazy gentleman, and say that there is that can be got out of a human body a protuberance on his forehead or temor a human brain, and he is a wise ple sufficiently large to produce a man who wastes no energy on pursuits Hamlet or a Principia, if he only had for which he is not fitted; and he is an active temperament. But the thing still wiser who, from among the things which produces Hamlets and Principias that he can do well, chooses and reso- is not physical temperament, but spirlutely follows the best.—Gladstone. itual power. What a man does is the

real test of what a man is ; and to deMen do not stumble, and blunder, clare that he has great capacity but and happen into Iliads, and Æneids, nothing great to set his capacity in and Divina Commedias, and Othellos, motion, is an absurdity in terms.

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