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(The schoolmistress came down with a rose in her hair,-a fresh June rose. She has been walking early; she has brought back two others, one on pach cheek.
I told her so, in some such pretty phrase as I •ould muster for the occasion. Those two blush. oses I just spoke of turned into a couple of damasks. I suppose all this went through my mind, for this was what I went on to say :-)
I love the damask rose best of all. The flowers our mothers and sisters used to love and cherish, those which grow beneath our eaves and by our doorstep, are the ones we always love best. If the Houyhnhoms should ever catch me, and, finding me particularly vicious, and unmanageable, send a man-tamer to Rareyfy me, I'll tell you what drugs he would have to take and how he would have to use them. Imagine yourself reading a number of the Houyhnlnm Gazette, giving an account of such an experiment.
“MAN-TAMING EXTRAORDINARY. “ The soft-hoosed semi-quadruped recently captured was subjected to the art of our distinguished man-tamer in presence of a numerous assembly The animal was led in by two stout ponies, closely confined by straps to prevent his sudden and dangerous tricks of shoulder-hitting and foot-striking. His countenance expressed the utmost degree of ferocity and cunning.
“ The operator took a handful of budding lilacleaves, and crushing them slightly between his hoofs, so as to bring out their peculiar fragrance, fastened them to the end of a long pole and held them tow. ards the creature. Its expression changed in an instant,-it drew in their fragrance eagerly, and attempted to seize them with its soft split hoofs. Having thus quieted his suspicious subject, the operator proceeded to tie a blue hyacinth to the end of the pole and held it out towards the wild animal. The effect was magical. Its eyes filled as if with raindrops, and its lips trembled as it pressed them
to the flower. After this it was perfectly quiet, and brought a measure of corn to the man-tamer, with. out showing the least disposition to strike with the feet or hit from the shoulder."
That will do for the Houyhnhom Gazette.-Do you ever wonder why poets talk so much about flowers? Did you ever hear of a poet who did not talk about them? Don't you think a poem, which, for the sake of being original, should leave them out, would be like those verses where the letter a or e or some other is omitted ? No,—they will bloom over and over again in poems as in the summer fields, to the end of time, always old and always new. Why should we be more shy of repeating ourselves than the spring be tired of blossoms or the night of stars? Look at Nature. She never wearies of saying over
her floral pater-noster. In the crevices of Cyclopean - walls in the dust where men lie, dust also,mon
the mounds that bury huge cities, the wreck of Nin. eveh and the Babel-heap,—still that same sweet prayer and benediction. The Amen! of Nature is always a flower.
Are you tired of my trivial personalities,—those splashes and streaks of sentiment, sometimes perhaps of sentimentality, which you may see when I show you my heart's corolla as if it were a tulip? Pray, do not give yourself the trouble to fancy me an idiot whose conceit it is to treat himself as an
exceptional being. It is because you are just like me that I talk and know that you will listen. W2 are all splashed and streaked with sentiments, not with precisely the same tints, or in exactly the same patterns, but by the same hand and from the same palette.
I don't believe any of you happen to have just the same passion for the blue hyacinth which I have,
—very certainly not for the crushed lilac-leaf-buds; many of you do not know how sweet they are. You love the smell of the sweet-fern and the bay. berry-leaves, I don't doubt; but I hardly think that the last bewitches you with young memories as it does me. For the same reason I come back to damask roses, after having raised a good many of the rarer varieties. I like to go to operas and concerts, but there are queer little old homely sounds that are better than music to me. However, I suppose it's foolish to tell such things.
- It is pleasant to be foolish at the right time, -said the divinity-student;-saying it, however, in one of the dead languages, which I think are unpopular for summer-reading, and therefore do not bear quotation as such.
Well, now,—said 1,--suppose a good, clean, wholesoine-looking countryman's cart stops opposite my door.-Do I want any huckleberries ?-If I do not, there are those that do. Thereupon my soft-voiced handmaid bears out a large tin pan, and then the
wholesome countryman, heaping the peck-measure,. spreads his broad bands around its lower arc to confine the wild and frisky berries, and so they run nimbly along the narrowing channel until they tum-. ble rustling down in a black cascade and tinkle on the resounding metal beneath.— I won't say that this rushing huckleberry hail-storm has not more music for me than the “Anvil Chorus.”
- I wonder how my great trees are coming on this summer.
- Where are your great trees, Sir ?—said the divinity-student. .
Oh, all round about New England. I call all trees mine that I have put my wedding-ring on, and I have as many tree-wives as Brigham Young has human ones.
- One set's as green as the other, exclaimed a boarder, who has never been identified. - They're all Bloomers,—said the young fellow called John.
(I should have rebuked this trifling with language, if our landlady's daughter had not asked me just then what I meant by putting my wedding-ring on a tree.)
Why, measuring it with my thirty-foot tape, my dear,—said 1,—I have worn a tape almost out on the rough barks of our old New England elms and other big trees.-Don't you want to hear me talk trees a little now? That is one of my specialties.