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He thought he detected the ghost of a wink in her right eye, and rose to the occasion with a squint of his left. The little woman's banner was floating high and triumphant. She laughed like a girl when she told the good news to the frying-pan and declared, “There is nothing better than baked trustees, except a trustee that needs no baking."
OWN in the yellow bay where the scows are sleeping,
Where among the dead men the sharks Alit to and fro, There Cap'n Goldsack 'goes, creeping, creeping, creeping, Looking for his treasure down below!
Yeo, yeo, heave-a-yeo !
Down among the tangleweed where the dead are leaking
Yeo, yeo, heave-a-yeo!
Twice a hundred year and more are gone acrost the bay,
Down acrost the yellow bay where the dead are sleeping;
Yeo, yeo, heave-a-yeo!
CULLUD LADY COOK.
COMEDY NEGRO-DIALECT VERSE MONOLOGUE FOR WOMAN.
CHARACTERS: CULLUD LADY COOK, speaker present; MISTRESS,
supposed to be present. COSTUME: Black Mammy style with bandanna on head. SCENE: Parlor interior. CULLUD LADY, with arms akimbo and
facing entrance to parlor, gazes sharply for a moment at
w’ite 'oman adbertisin' fer er cook?
lady But fo’ we cums ter bizness I'se disposed ter take er look,
An' see ef I'se impressioned by yer face.
It looks er little sassy, but it mout be lookin' wuss,
Kase w'ite folks has some monst'ous funny ways,
An' now I'll ax how much er month yer pays?
W’y fifteen dollars, 'oman, is er insult ter ma kind !
'Twould hardly buy dis cullud lady's shoes, I niver wuks for cheap folks, tell de trufe ter speak ma mind,
I niver wuks at all unless I choose.
I specks you'll want er ref'rence an' ter know de reason why,
I didn't keep de job I had befo',
You'll ax dem kinder ques’ions mouty slow.
Yo terms don't ʼzackly suit me, but I kinder lak yer style,
So ef you'll please ter make de kitchen fire,
I allus laks ter know ter whom I hire.
FRIEND OF THE FAMILY.
HRISTIE was very small, and had red hair and freckles.
As far back as he could remember, he had sold newspapers on the streets. For the last few summers he had blackened boots on a ferry-boat. Young as he was, he had seen more of New York than most men of forty. He had already tired of the city and wanted to get out in the world and travel. So far as he could see, to travel with a circus would about suit his ideas. Christie was not yet twelve years old, when he got a chance to satisfy his life's ambition. The duties assigned him were not onerous, and his salary was correspondingly small. He stood behind a wooden stand and helped sell peanuts and lemonade, but he was much happier than he had ever been before.
The proprietor liked the boy, who was regarded as the mascot of the company.
But Christie lavished all his affection on a family called Boynton, consisting of Boynton, his wife, and their little girl Patricia. The man did a bare-back act, in which he was assisted by the little girl.
The friendship between Christie and the family came through the boy's devotion to “Patsy," who was very pretty, with long yellow hair and blue eyes, and Christie no sooner saw her than he found himself very much in love with her.
Boynton came to Mr. Clyde, the proprietor, one morning, and said that his girl was too ill to appear, and suggested that Christie be allowed to try the act with him. Christie was a little shaky at the afternoon performance, but at night he felt more at home. The next day Clyde got him a beautiful red suit, with silver spangles, and a white wig to cover his red hair.
In a week Patsy was able to go on with her act. But she often resigned her place in Christie's favor, and he had many opportunities to wear the red tights and the white wig.
Christie knew that Mrs. Boynton was not happy. She had left a comfortable home to run away with a circus-performer; and, as the romance wore off, she put the blame of her position more and more on the man. As for Boynton, he worshiped his wife.
Christie had noticed that the relations between the two had been strained of late. There was a man connected with the business part of the circus who had been attentive to Mrs. Boynton, and Christie saw that the husband was desperately jealous. The flirtation had been going on for several weeks, when a man asked Christie if he had heard the news.
“What news?” said Christie, “Only Mrs. Boynton has run off with the business manager."
Christie ran to look for Boynton. He found him alone in one of the small tents. It was dark, but Christie could hear him sobbing like a child.
“Do you and Patsy do the turn to-night, Mr. Boynton ?” he said. “Yes, Christie; if I never do it again."
“Clyde would hardly expect it, and, really, Mr. Boynton, I'm afraid you're not fit."
"Don't you worry, Christie, I'll be steady enough when the time comes."
But Christie did not think so. He saw the danger of accident or even death for the girl. He found Patsy going into the dressing-tent. He saw that she knew nothing of what had happened.
"Patsy," he said, "I'd like very much to do the turn to-night." "Why?" said Patsy.
“Well, there's some boys out there in front, and I think I'd like them to see me in my red tights and spangles, see?”
"Oh, all right; I don't care." “Thank you ever so much.”
"Your hand's as cold as ice,” said the ring-master, as he led Christie out.
“Think so ?” said Christie. “Great house, isn't it?"
In a minute he was on the horse's back, and a moment later Boynton was holding him out at arm's-length. Christie saw that the rider was doing the act unconscious of everything about him. The man seemed dazed, and moved mechanically. If the horse had not been so well trained the act must have ended at once in a failure. As it slowed down to a walk, Christie gave vent to a long sigh of relief. “That was easy enough,” he said to himself; “but I wish I was over those five sticks.”
The hurdles were brought out, and the horse started on a slow gallop around the ring. Boynton, who was probably unconscious of what he was doing, or over-anxious to get through the act and be alone, suddenly yelled to his horse. Christie, who was standing on the man's shoulders, felt the animal make a sudden start, and just managed to steady himself for the first hurdle.
“One-two-three-four," he counted, as the horse jumped each hurdle. In another second it would all be over. At the exit he saw Patsy standing. Then he looked at the man holding the last hurdle. As the horse jumped each stick, the man always lowered it; but now he was looking away from them, and might not lower it in time. The blood rushed to Christie's head. He felt as if a furnace was raging within him.
"Lower that hurdle, you—_” The rest of the sentence was lost in the yells of the men and the shrieks of the women. The audience was on its feet. The horse had hit the stick with one of its forefeet. The man fell uninjured, but the boy was picked up with a deep cut just over his temple.
The ring-master called for any doctors that might be in the audience, and a little group of men followed the two attendants that carried the boy into the dressing-tent. When Christie opened his eyes he saw the three Boyntons standing by his side.
“So you came back, did you ?" said Christie to Mrs. Boynton. “Yes, Christie. I hope it's not too late," she sobbed.
“It's never too late," he said. “You're never goin' to leave Patsy again, though, are you?"
“That's good," said Christie. “But what's the matter with the band? Why ain't it playin'? And the lights, they're all goin' out. Say, please, don't leave me alone here when I'm hurt."
The proprietor stood in the background. One of the attendants tiptoed noiselessly across the floor of the tent to his side.