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When the road was so dark, and the night was so cold,
Though my wallet was scant I remembered his case,
Where now shall I go, poor, forsaken, and blind?
Conceal, hide. Wound, hurt.
On that account, for that reason.
Avoid, keep clear of. Venture, dare (to go).
"Look at that beautiful titmouse yonder, on the apple-tree!" said Lawrence, to his sister Lucy: " I will soon have it." He climbed up the tree, set a trap a little way off, and concealed himself with his sister in the arbour, in order to watch the bird.
The titmouse went straight into the trap, and Lawrence was presently up the tree again; but he fell with the trap, while he was taking the bird out of it. The bird escaped, but Lawrence wounded his hand against a broken bough.
Lucy said: "Oh, my poor brother! your hand is bleeding. Now, you will surely stay here, and will not climb the tree again to catch the titmouse. You would perhaps then break both arm and leg."
"Ah!" said Lawrence, laughing, "I do not remain down here on that account, but my trouble now would be all in vain; for the titmouse would avoid the trap in which it has been already caught."
"If that is so," said Lucy, "the titmouse is wiser than you; it will not go a second time where it perceives danger. Bnt will you, who have only this instant got a wound, nevertheless venture again into greater danger, and make a joke of it too?"
"Who little warnings foolishly despise,
Banish, send away. Resume, begin again. Gambol, sport.
In yonder vase behold a drowning fly,
Its little feet how vainly does it ply!
Its cries I understand not, yet it cries;
And tender hearts can feel its agonies.
Poor, helpless victim! and will no one save,
Will no one snatch thee from the threatening grave?
Is there no friendly hand, no helper nigh?
And must thou, little struggler, must thou die?
Thou shalt not, while this hand can set thee free;
Thou shalt not die—this hand shall rescue thee;
My finger's tip shall prove a friendly shore;—
There, trembler! all thy dangers now are o'er:
Wipe thy wet wings, and banish all thy fear;
Go, join thy buzzing brothers in the air.
Away it flies—resumes its harmless play,
And lightly gambols in the golden ray.—Aikin.
Over-anxious, too anxious. Imaginary, fancied.
A Lady, named Hill, lived in a beautiful house at the entrance of a town. One morning she said to her maid, "Susan, I am just going to church. When you go across the street to fetch water, or into the garden to pick beans, shut the house-door, else some one may easily slink into the house, and do us some harm."
The lady went; Susan cleaned up the room; went next to the spring, and left all the doors standing open, as usual.
"There is not a person to be seen all up and down the street," said she, and laughed at the overanxious carefulness of her mistress.
But while Susan was chattering with another maid at the spring, a goat ran in at the house-door, sprang up the stairs, and went into the lady's room.
There hung a large looking-glass in a gilt frame, which reached nearly to the floor of the room. The goat saw himself in the glass, and supposing that it was another goat, butted at the glass with his horns. The goat in the glass did just the same, on which the real goat suddenly charged at the imaginary one. He struck at him so violently that the looking-glass was shivered into a thousand pieces.
Just then Susan came in at the house-door, with the tub of water on her head, and heard the crash of the broken glass. She ran to the room, clasped her hands together over her head, and beat and drove the goat out of the house; but that could not put the glass together again.
When her mistress returned home, the careless maid was dismissed for her disobedience, and her wages were kept back as some compensation for the mischief done. In her new place it was no longer necessary to order her to shut the door: by this time she had learnt to attend to the saying:—
"The careless, who despise advice,
THE GARDENER AND HIS ASS.
A Gardener who was going to market loaded his ass so heavily with vegetables that nothing could be seen of the poor beast but its head.
The road lay through a willow-bed, and the gardener cut a bundle of willow-twigs for binders; for he said, as he loaded them up, "The ass can still carry such a little weight as this."
A little farther on there was a hazel-bush, and the gardener looked out two dozen slight wands to serve as flower-sticks. "They are so slight that the ass can hcarcely feel them," he said, and threw them up also.
Meanwhile the sun rose higher, and already shone fiercely. The gardener then took off his green coat, and put it upon the rest of the load. "It is not much farther to town," said he; "and the beast can hardly feel the weight of a coat, which I can lift with my little finger."
But scarcely had he said this, when the ass stumbled over a stone, fell to the ground, and, overcome by the heavy burden, could rise no more. Then the gardener, in a fright, complained and lamented loudly: "Now I see, to my great loss, that neither man nor beast can be burdened beyond their strength."
"The last addition to a load too great,
"A feather may break a camel's back."
Intent, intently, closely, steadily.
THE DOG AND THE WATER-LILY.
It was the time when Ouse displayed
Its lilies newly blown;
And one I wished my own.
With cane extended far, I sought
To steer it close to land!
Escaped my eager hand.
Beau* marked my unsuccessful pains
With fixed, considerate face, And puzzling set his puppy brains
To comprehend the case.
But with a cherup clear and strong,
Dispersing all his dream,
The windings of the stream.
My ramble ended, I returned;
Beau, trotting far before,
And plunging left the shore.
I saw him with that lily cropt
Impatient swim to meet
The treasure at my feet.—Cowper.
* Pron. Be.