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faded with the sunshine, which seemed to have filtered through to
the thoughts within.
"Here's a characteristic bit for you: 'I would rather sit on a
pumpkin, and have it all to myself, than be crowded on a velvet
cushion. I would rather ride on earth in an oxcart, with free
circulation, than go to heaven in the fancy car of an excursion
train, and breathe malaria all the way.'
"I've tried both and quite agree with him," laughed Mac, and
skimming down another page, gave her a paragraph here and there.
"'Read the best books first, or you may not have a chance to read
them at all.'
"'We do not learn much from learned books, but from sincere
human books: frank, honest biographies.'
"'At least let us have healthy books. Let the poet be as vigorous as
the sugar maple, with sap enough to maintain his own verdure,
besides what runs into the trough; and not like a vine which, being
cut in the spring, bears no fruit, but bleeds to death in the endeavor
to heal its wounds.'"
"That will do for you," said Rose, still thinking of the new
suspicion which pleased her by its very improbability.
Mac flashed a quick look at her and shut the book, saying quietly,
although his eyes shone, and a conscious smile lurked about his
mouth: "We shall see, and no one need meddle, for, as my Thoreau
"Whate'er we leave to God, God does
And blesses us: The work we choose should be our own
God lets alone."
Rose sat silent, as if conscious that she deserved his poetical
"Come, you have catechized me pretty well; now I'll take my turn
and ask you why you look 'uplifted,' as you call it. What have you
been doing to make yourself more like your namesake than ever?"
asked Mac, carrying war into the enemy's camp with the sudden
"Nothing but live, and enjoy doing it. I actually sit here, day after
day, as happy and contented with little things as Dulce is and feel
as if I wasn't much older than she," answered the girl, feeling as if
some change was going on in that pleasant sort of pause but unable
to describe it.
"As if a rose should shut and be a bud again," murmured Mac,
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