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“Come, Rosy, come !" Years, many years had gone,
But yet had left the recollection of that sceneThe woman and the fair-haired child that knelt
And picked the daisies on the roadside green. I looked. The old familiar road was there
A woman, wan and stooping, stood there too;
That fixed itself back where the daisies grew.
Run from the daisies with its gathered prize; “Come, Rosy, come!" I heard no merry laugh
To light the love-glow in the mother's eyes. “Come, Rosy, come !" She turned, and down the road
The plaintive voice grew fainter on my ear; Caressing tones-not mixed with prattle now,
But full of loving words—I still could hear. I, wondering, asked a gossip at my door;
He told the story-all there was to tell : A little mound the village churchyard bore ; And this, he said, is only Crazy Nell.
A SECOND TRIAL.
From St. Nicholas.
people were pouring into the church as I entered it, rather tardy. Finding the choice seats in the centre of the audience-room already taken, I pressed forward, looking to the right and to the left for a vacancy. On the very front row
of seats I found one.
Here a little girl moved along to make room for me, looking into my face with large gray eyes, whose brightness was softened by very long lashes. Her face was open and fresh as a newly blown rose before sunrise. Again and again I found my eyes turning to the roselike face, and each time the gray eyes moved, halfsmiling, to meet mine. Evidently the child was ready
make up” with me. And when, with a bright smile, she returned my dropped handkerchief, and I said “Thank you !" we seemed fairly introduced. Other persons, now coming into the seat, crowded me quite close up against the little girl, so that we soon felt very well acquainted. “There's going to be a great crowd,” she said to me.
Yes," I replied ; “people always like to see how school-boys are made into men."
Her face beamed with pleasure and pride as she said:
“My brother's going to graduate ; he's going to speak; I've brought these flowers to throw to him.”
They were not greenhouse favorites; just old-fashioned domestic flowers, such as we associate with the dear grandmothers; “but," I thought, “ they will seem sweet and beautiful to him for little sister's sake."
“That is my brother,” she went on, pointing with her nosegay.
“The one with the light hair?" I asked.
“Oh, no," she said, smiling and shaking her head in innocent reproof; “not that homely one; that handsome one with brown wavy hair. His eyes look brown, too; but they are not—they are dark-blue. There ! he's got his hand up to his head now. You see him, don't
In an eager way she looked from me to him, and from
him to me, as if some important fate depended upon my identifying her brother.
“I see him," I said. “He's a very good-looking brother.”
“Yes, he is beautiful,” she said, with artless delight; “and he's so good, and he studies so hard. He has taken care of me ever since mamma died. Here is his name on the programme. He is not the valedictorian, but he has an honor, for all that.”
I saw in the little creature's familiarity with these technical college terms that she had closely identified herself with her brother's studies, hopes, and successes.
“His oration is a real good one, and he says it beautifully. He has said it to me a great many times. I 'most know it by heart. Oh! it begins so pretty and 80 grand. This is the way it begins,” she added, encouraged by the interest she must have seen in my face: “ Amid the permutations and combinations of the actors and the forces which make
up the great kaleidoscope of history, we often find that a turn of Destiny's hand
Why, bless the baby !” I thought, looking down into her bright, proud face. I can't describe how very odd and elfish it did seem to have those sonorous words rolling out of the smiling infantile mouth.
As the exercises progressed, and approached nearer and nearer the effort on which all her interest was concentrated, my little friend became excited and restless. Her eyes grew larger and brighter, two deep-red spots glowed on her cheeks.
· Now, it's his turn,” she said, turning to me a face in which pride and delight and anxiety seemed about equally mingled. But when the overture was played through, and his name was called, the child seemed, in her
eagerness, to forget me and all the earth beside him. She rose to her feet and leaned forward for a better view of her beloved, as he mounted to the speaker's stand. I knew by her deep breathing that her heart was throbbing in her throat. I knew, too, by the way. her brother came up the steps and to the front that he was trembling. The hands hung limp; his face was pallid, and the lips blue as with cold. I felt anxious. The child, too, seemed to discern that things were not well with him. Something like fear showed in her face.
He made an automatic bow. Then a bewildered, struggling look came into his face, then a helpless look, and then he stood staring vacantly, like a somnambulist, at the waiting audience. The moments of painful suspense went by, and still he stood as if struck dumb. I saw how it was; he had been seized with stage-fright.
Alas! little sister! She turned her large, dismayed eyes upon me. “He's forgotten it,” she said. Then a swift change came into her face; a strong, determined look; and on the funeral-like silence of the room broke the sweet, brave, child-voice :
“• Amid the permutations and combinations of the actors and the forces which make up the great kaleidoscope of history, we often find that a turn of Destiny's
Everybody about us turned and looked. The breathless silence; the sweet, childish voice; the childish face; the long, unchildlike words, produced a weird effect.
But the help had come too late ; the unhappy brother was already staggering in humiliation from the stage. The band quickly struck up, and waves of lively music rolled out to cover the defeat.
I gave the little sister a glance in which I meant to show the intense sympathy I felt; but she did not see
Her eyes, swimming with tears, were on her brother's face. I put my arm around her, but she was too absorbed to heed the caress, and before I could appreciate her purpose, she was on her way to the shame-stricken young man sitting with a face like a statue's.
When he saw her by his side the set face relaxed, and a quick mist came into his eyes. The young men got closer together to make room for her. She sat down beside him, laid her flowers on his knee, and slipped her hand in his.
I could not keep my eyes from her sweet, pitying face. I saw her whisper to him, he bending a little to catch her words. Later, I found out that she was asking him if he knew his “piece” now, and that he answered yes.
When the young man next on the list had spoken, and while the band was playing, the child, to the brother's great surprise, made her way up the stage steps, and pressed through the throng of professors and trustees and distinguished visitors, up to the college president.
“If you please, sir,” she said with a little courtesy, will you
and the trustees let my brother try again ? He knows his piece now."
For a moment the president stared at her through his gold-bowed spectacles, and then, appreciating the child's petition, he smiled on her, and went down and spoke to the young man who had failed.
So it happened that when the band had again ceased playing, it was briefly announced that Mr. would now deliver his oration—“ Historical Parallels.”