THE FLAG-RAISING

  THE FLAG-RAISINGTHE FLAG-RAISINGby KATE DOUGLAS WIGGIN1THE FLAG-RAISINGIA DIFFERENCE IN HEARTS"I DON'know as I cal'lated to be the makin' of any child," Miranda hadsaid as she folded Aurelia's
作者: 籍贯:
类型: 分类:中国文学
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  THE FLAG-RAISINGTHE FLAG-RAISINGby KATE DOUGLAS WIGGIN1THE FLAG-RAISINGIA DIFFERENCE IN HEARTS"I DON'know as I cal'lated to be the makin' of any child," Miranda hadsaid as she folded Aurelia's letter and laid it in the light- stand drawer. "Is'posed of course Aurelia would send us the one we asked for, but it's justlikehertopalmoff thatwildyoungone on somebody else." "Youremember wesaidthat Rebecca, oreven Jenny might come,incaseHannah could n't," interposed Jane.c9c今日教育资源网
  "I know we did, but we hadn't any notion it would turn out that way,"grumbled Miranda. "She was a mite of a thing when we saw her threeyears ago," ventured Jane; "she's had time to improve." "And time to growworse!" "Won't it be kind of a privilege to put her on the right track?"asked Janetimidly. "I don' know aboutthe privilegepart; it'llbeconsiderable work, I guess. If her mother hasn't got her on the right trackby now, she won't take to it herself all of a sudden." This depressed anddepressing frame of mind had lasted until theventful day dawned on which Rebecca was to arrive.c9c今日教育资源网
  "If she makes as much work after she comes as she has before, wemight as well give up hope of ever gettin' any rest," sighed Miranda as shehung the dish towels on the barberry bushes at the side door. "But weshould have had to clean house, Rebecca or no Rebecca," urged Jane; "andI can't see whyyou've scrubbed and washedand baked as you have forthat one child, nor why you've about bought out Watson's stock of drygoods." "I know Aurelia if you don't," responded Miranda. "I've seen herhouse, and I've seen that batch o' children, wearin' one another's clothesand never carin' whether they had 'em on right side out or not; I knowwhat they've had to live and dress on, and so do you. That child will likeas not come here with a bundle o' things borrowed from the rest o' thefamily.She'll haveHannah's shoes and John'sundershirtsand Mark'ssocks most likely. I suppose she never had a thimble on her finger in herlife, but she'll know the feelin' o' one before she's been here many days.c9c今日教育资源网
  2THE FLAG-RAISINGI've bought a piece of unbleached muslin and a piece o' brown ginghamfor her to make up; that'll keep her busy. Of course she won't pick upanything after herself; she probablynever saw a duster, and she'll be ashard to train into our ways as if she was a heathen." "She'll make adif'rence," acknowledged Jane, "but she may turn out more biddable thanwe think." "She'll mind when she's spoken to, biddable or not," remarkedMiranda with a shake of the last towel. Miranda Sawyer had a heart,ofcourse, but she had never used it for any other purpose than the pumpingand circulatingof blood.Shewasjust,conscientious,economical,industrious;aregularattendantatchurchandSunday-school, and amember of the State Missionary and Bible societies, but in the presence ofall these chilly virtues you longed for one warm little fault, or lacking that,one likable failing, something to make you sure that she was thoroughlyalive.Shehadnever hadany educationotherthanthat of theneighborhood district school, for her desires and ambitions had all pointedto the management of the house, the farm, and the dairy. Jane, on the otherhand, had gone to an academy,and also to a boarding-school foryoungladies; so had Aurelia; and after all the years that had elapsed there wasstill a slight difference in language and in manner between the elder andthe two younger sisters. Jane, too, had had the inestimable advantage of asorrow; not the natural grief at the loss of her aged father and mother, forshe had been resigned to let them go; but something far deeper. She wasengaged to marry young, Tom Carter, who had nothing to marry on, it istrue, but who was sure to have, some time or other. Then the war broke out.c9c今日教育资源网
  Tom enlisted at the first call. Up to that time Jane had loved him with aquiet, friendly sort of affection, and had given her country a mild emotionof the same sort. But the strife, the danger, the anxiety of the time, set newcurrents of feeling in motion. Life became something other than the threemeals a day, the round of cooking, washing, sewing, and churchgoing.c9c今日教育资源网
  Personal gossip vanished fromthe village conversation. Big things tookthe place of trifling ones, --sacred sorrows of wives and mothers, pangs offathers and husbands, self-denials, sympathies, new desire to bear oneanother's burdens. Men and women grew fast in those days of the nation's3THE FLAG-RAISINGtroubleand danger,and Janeawokefromthe vaguedull dreamshe hadhitherto called life to new hopes,new fears, new purposes. Then after ayear's anxiety, a year when one never looked in the newspaper withoutdread and sickness of suspense, came the telegram saying that Tom waswounded; and without so much as asking Miranda's leave, she packed hertrunk and started for the South. She was in time to hold Tom's handthrough hours of pain; to show him for once the heart of a prim NewEngland girl when it is ablaze with love and grief; to put her arms abouthim so that he could have a home to die in, and that was all;-- all, but itserved. It carried her through weary months of nursing--nursing of othersoldiers for Tom's dear sake; it sent her home a better woman; and thoughshe had never left Riverboro in all the years that lay between, and hadgrown into the counterfeit presentment of her sister and of all other thin,spare,New England spinsters,itwas somethingofacounterfeit,andunderneath was still the faint echo of that wild heartbeat of her girlhood.

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