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-words that gained him no friends. I had not yet passed when, like a gift Most of all he railed constantly at from heaven itself, hope again revived women, though the memory of a mother in his breast. As if it were a dream, he dearly loved should have silenced he found himself again in the presence his scornful tongue. One day the knowl- of her he loved, and she, he dared to edge of his own littleness became think, looked upon him with the old known to him in a moment. A young, kindness in her face. Alice, dear Alice, unpretending girl, sublime in her sym- does not that tender smile, do not these pathy and tenderness for the unfortu- modest blushes, tell the young man that nate, disclosed to him that treasure of a it is not all a dream? Speak, Alice. woman's heart which he had so often It is you must end my story.” affected to despise. He had passed Need I write the answer ? No, his glib judgment upon the world, he though it is written on my heart, where had found it false and hollow, and yet her gentle, faltering words shall find there before him, in the picture of that their only record. fair girl bending over the lowliest and When good Mrs. M-awoke from most degraded of her sex, was told the her slumbers her apology was cut story of a capability for a generous, short by a young couple kneeling before heroic sacrifice of self, of which he, her and asking her blessing. When in his own life, had never given a sign. one short year has elapsed, I am to From that time forward there was a take Alice to my home, which I trust, higher purpose in all his strivings, and ere then, to make worthy of her. unworthy as he was he sought that It is but à few hours since all this gentle girl's love, and she, beautiful in passed, and as I write, the face of my her womanhood, gave him the inspira- sweet Alice comes before me, and tion of her soul and opened before him again I hear her earnest parting words, a future bright and joyful as a poet's “Good night, and God bless you, dream. But the clouds gathered around James, and may He grant you a him again. He had not yet fully learned Happy New Year.” the lesson of patience and endurance. I turn over these pages of my diary The mere annoyances of a moment and read them again and again. They aroused all his stubborn pride, and, do not tell a story the world would unheeding the gentle counsel of his care to hear, but they contain all the good genius, he allowed his angry pas- romance of my life for me. And, sions the mastery, and rudely cast when in the far-off future, children away the treasure of love he had never shall gather around me and read of really deserved. For more than one heroes and their loves, my thoughts long year he brooded in loneliness and will turn fondly back to this little gloom, and when the New Year came, room of mine, where in the silence of once more it found him nearly hope- the night I now sit writing, with a less, the old hardness closing in around grateful heart, for God has blessed my his heart. But that New-Year's Day life on New Year's Day.
JUDGE BETWEEN THEM!
A CHRISTMAS SKETCH.
BY JAMES B. FISHER.
the panes and utter dismal threatenings and complaints to all the eaves and
gargoyles. A few flakes of snow fell In the heart of a great city, and early in the day, but the blast has long facing on a sequestered street within ago swept them off to the lee side of hearing of a thoroughfare's hum and stoops and other nooks of vantage. rumble, stands a comfortable house. It Some of them are still clinging to the has a genteel front and a look of solvent window-sill of the comfortable house, respectability on every square foot of and peeping in at a cosy room where it, from the polished door-plate to the Mr. Claude Chandley sits prosing before attic's discreet blinds. There is a sort a snug fire. Mr. Claude Chandley is a of frigid dignity in every house on this man of superb stature, with a rubicund street, and all the flat roofs seem face and an eccentric imperial. One staring with infinite disparagement at man in a thousand, nay, in ten thousand, the gables, and giving one another the is Mr. Claude Chandley. He is emicold shoulder out of sheer self-impor- nent, very eminent, in the literary world tance. It is a very unneighborly neigh- —a successful journalist, a popular borhood. To see the Smith family of novelist, a writer on various economies. No. 10 flounce past the Joneses of And he has lectured to large houses, next door on Sundays, one would be delighted the popular mind with the persuaded that an hereditary feud had wideness and beauty of his views, and figured in the last will and testament tickled the popular fancy with his keen of every lineal ancestor since the time satire and ready humor. of the medieval Smiths and Joneses. A philanthropist, too, is Mr. Claude And the emphatic way in which Betty Chandley, ever willing to set before of No. 10 gives her broom a valedictory the world the grievances of the downpound on the curbstone when the fe- trodden masses and depict in glowing male retainer of No. 12 appears is full colors the miseries of the lowly and of hostile significance.
destitute. More chill and unsociable-looking “Oh, what a dear, warm-hearted than ever is the street on this Christ- creature that Claude Chandley must mas-eve afternoon. Gusts of wind be,” cried Miss Clementine Languid, in come sweeping round the corners and, a rapture after perusing “ The Beggar's edging up to the closed shutters, rattle Burial.” “How divinely he does describe that death-bed scene. I cried the singular facility Mr. Claude Chandover every word of it.”
ley had for dreaming. “ A man of large views, of very large The wind that clutched at the winviews,” soliloquized Papa Languid on dow-shutters went chilling through the reading Chandley's brochure on “Our rags of a little beggar on the street; Paupers.” “He is a humanitarian, the daylight died slowly on gable, roof, every inch of him."
and spire, and when the lights blazed in What Papa Languid and Miss Clem- the emporiums gaunt shadows gathered entina said was only the reflex of every in low and dim retreats; but in the other body's opinions. So it may be cosy room the fire still shone cheerily, inferred that Mr. Claude Chandley was and Mr. Claude Chandley was still a man of some importance in the com- dreaming on paper of the Christmas munity, and it is only fair to state that times, the season of good-will and peace, no one realized that fact more fully the season for the hand to give and the than Mr. Claude himself.
heart to warm to others. As he lolled back before the cheerful Of great beauty and symmetry was fire and shifted his slippered feet on the writer's dream. Quaint fancies the fender, he looked the very embodi-strung together-grains of sentiment ment of self-complacency under favor- that bore a hidden life caught from the able conditions, and his easy equanimity warmth of their Christmas tone—shades was not a whit disturbed by the letter and colors of things that might be. a servant laid beside him. This was There were pictures in it of an unreal what it contained.
life that shrunk behind a mask of comDec. 24.
monplace actuality. It had woven in its Mr. Claude Chandley.
texture the wailing of the outcast and
Your two-column Christmas sketch has not yet been received. forlorn, but there always was a golden As the — goes to press this evening you thread to twine about it—the cry of will please forward MS.
want was in it piteous and prolonged, Publishers.
but it had always listening ears to Mr. Claude Chandley, contrary to reach and crime's foulness ever was stereotyped usage, did nothing violent absorbed in the odor of good deeds. on perusing this communication. Nor Had it a moral ? Yes. Mr. Claude did his language at all savor of inele- Chandley always dreamt morals. The gance. He only yawned, stared into great precept, “Do to others as you the fire, and muttered:
would be done by," was its text; “A Christmas sketch—charity, holy “ Feed the hungry, clothe the naked," season, and all that—hackneyed, worn lighten the burden of another's toil, threadbare. But what of that I'll bring balsam to them torn of scourges ! dream again, yes, I'll dream again." Human life is festering in loathsome
And in pursuance of these intentions dens. Human hopes are wrecking day he wheeled his chair over to a writ- by day. Human hearts, sodden by care ing desk and fell to writing with such and sin, are rotting in their owners' earnestness that an observer would bosoms. Help them all! Men, couched have been very deeply impressed with l in down, whose lives are blank and barren, attend to these! Men, grasping Mr. Claude Chandley stopped, but with a greedy hand the fruits of others’ | his eyes were turned away from the toil, forbear!
Men, wasting mighty eager, white face. If he had heard the energies in worthless aims, a teeming prayer for aid he did not heed it. It field awaits you! All this and more was toward the open door of a magniwas in Mr. Claude Chandley's dream. ficent mansion he was looking. A
The night fell; the yule-tide log gentleman was coming down the stoop was lighted; the altar stood grand and to him. solemn in its commemorative decking; “ The compliments of the season to the banquet board was spread; the you, Chandley,” cried Mr. Luchre, the blaze of the bazaar illumed the air ; wealthy parvenu, for it was he. “You music swelled out sweet and thrilling; are coming to the club ? " light feet twinkled on the dancing Before the other could answer, the floor; and Mr. Claude Chandley hur- ragged boy stretches out a thin, tremried off to his club. His Christmas bling hand between them. sketch was written, his dream was “Please, gentlemen, give us a cent." over, and he felt that his duty to society “Be off, you young scamp,” cried was discharged and that philanthropy the philanthropist; and then, to the indeed had few knights like him. merchant prince: “Here is a ready
Along the dim streets of a fashionable instance, my dear Luchre, of the quarter he passed. There were sounds necessity we have of a more compre of feasting ever and anon dropping hensive system of public charity.” out from brilliant parlors, and merry Mr. Luchre, a big, good-humored voices rang upon the wind that bit so man, had put his hand in his pocket, sharply. But far unlike all these was but on Mr. Claude Chandley's sumthe small voice that reached him as he mary dismissal of the beggar he took paused to button his coat more tightly. it out again—empty, for the parvenu
“Give us a cent, sir, please !” was esteemed the opinion of so eminent a all it said.
man, and was desperately willing to A sharp, quavering voice it was. shape his actions on a model of such The whine of hereditary beggary was perfection. in it, but it had also the plaint of “ You see,” went on the philanhereditary want. The lips that uttered thropist, “in that boy, an individual it were thin and blue, and there was a member of a class we term dangerous, pinched and greedy expression on the a class which I grieve to say, in spite young face that looked up half beseech- of reformatory enterprises, is daily ining, half fearful.
creasing. And why, my dear sir? The philanthropist, the theorist, the simply because its growth is encourdreamer, was before the object of his aged by influences which serve devices and his visions. The one gas- make destitution self-supporting and light streamed on both. Mr. Claude enable the beggar to subsist indepenChandley stopped. A look of glad dent of State aid. This is an evil expectancy came into the pallid face, which must be counteracted, you admit, and as quickly faded from it.
and the readiest way of meeting it is