by Mark Twain ( 1835-1910 ) Two or three individuals holding at different times intimated that if I would compose an autobiography they would read it when they got leisure, I yield at last to this frenzied public demand and herewith stamp my history.
Ours is a baronial house, and stretches a long manner back into antiquity. The earliest ascendant the Couples have any record of was a friend of the household by the name of Higgins. This was in the 11th century, when our people were populating in Aberdeen, county of Cork, England. Why it is that our long line has of all time since borne the maternal name ( except when one of them now and so took a playful safety in an assumed name to debar folly ) , alternatively of Higgins, is a enigma which none of us has of all time felt much desire to stir. It is a sort of vague, reasonably love affair, and we leave it entirely. All the old households do that manner.
Arthour Twain was a adult male of considerable note — a canvasser on the main road in William Rufus ‘s clip. At about the age of 30 he went to one of those all right old English topographic points of resort called Newgate, to see about something, and ne’er returned once more. While there he died all of a sudden.
Augustus Twain seems to hold made something of a splash about the twelvemonth 1160. He was as full of merriment as he could be, and used to take his old sabre and sharpen it up, and acquire in a convenient topographic point on a dark dark, and stick it through people as they went by, to see them leap. He was a born humourist. But he got to traveling excessively far with it ; and the first clip he was found depriving one of these parties, the governments removed one terminal of him, and put it up on a nice high topographic point on Temple Bar, where it could contemplate the people and have a good clip. He ne’er liked any state of affairs so much or stuck to it so long.
Then for the following two hundred old ages the household tree shows a sequence of soldiers — baronial, ebullient chaps, who ever went into conflict vocalizing, right behind the ground forces, and ever went out a-whooping, right in front of it.
This is a scathing reproof to old dead Froissart ‘s hapless humor that our household tree ne’er had but one limb to it, and that that one stuck out at right angles, and bore fruit winter and summer.
Early on in the 15th century we have Beau Twain, called “ the Scholar. ” He wrote a beautiful, beautiful manus. And he could copy anybody ‘s manus so closely that it was adequate to do a individual laugh his caput off to see it. He had infinite athletics with his endowment. But by and by he took a contract to interrupt rock for a route, and the raggedness of the work spoiled his manus. Still, he enjoyed life all the clip he was in the rock concern, which, with inconsiderable intervals, was some 42 old ages. In fact, he died in harness. During all those long old ages he gave such satisfaction that he ne’er was through with one contract a hebdomad till the authorities gave him another. He was a perfect pet. And he was ever a favourite with his fellow-artists, and was a conspicuous member of their benevolent secret society, called the Chain Gang. He ever wore his hair short, had a penchant for stripy apparels, and died lamented by the authorities. He was a sensitive loss to his state. For he was so regular.
Some old ages subsequently we have the celebrated John Morgan Twain. He came over to this state with Columbus in 1492 as a rider. He appears to hold been of a crusty, uncomfortable temperament. He complained of the nutrient all the manner over, and was ever endangering to travel ashore unless there was a alteration. He wanted fresh shad. Barely a twenty-four hours passed over his caput that he did non travel tick overing about the ship with his olfactory organ in the air, sneering about the commanding officer, and stating he did non believe Columbus cognize where he was traveling to or had of all time been there earlier. The memorable call of “ Land Ho! ” thrilled every bosom in the ship but his. He gazed for a while through a piece of smoke-cured glass at the pencilled line lying on the distant H2O, and so said: “ Land be hanged — it ‘s a raft! ”
When this questionable rider came on board the ship, be brought nil with him but an old newspaper incorporating a hankie marked “ B. G. , ” one cotton sock marked “ L. W. C. , ” one woolen one marked “ D. F. , ” and a night-shirt pronounced “ O. M. R. ” And yet during the ocean trip he worried more about his “ bole, ” and gave himself more poses about it, than all the remainder of the riders put together. If the ship was “ down by the caput, ” and would non maneuver, he would travel and travel his “ bole ” farther aft, and so watch the consequence. If the ship was “ by the after part, ” he would propose to Columbus to detail some work forces to “ switch that luggage. ” In storms he had to be gagged, because his bawlings about his “ bole ” made it impossible for the work forces to hear the orders. The adult male does non look to hold been openly charged with any soberly indecent thing, but it is noted in the ship ‘s log as a “ funny circumstance ” that albeit he brought his luggage on board the ship in a newspaper, he took it ashore in four short pantss, a queensware crate, and a twosome of bubbly baskets. But when he came back insinuating, in an insolent, tittuping manner, that some of this things were losing, and was traveling to seek the other riders ‘ luggage, it was excessively much, and they threw him overboard. They watched long and questioningly for him to come up, but non even a bubble rose on the softly ebbing tide. But while every one was most absorbed in staring over the side, and the involvement was momently increasing, it was observed with alarm that the vas was adrift and the anchor-cable hanging hitch from the bow. Then in the ship ‘s dimmed and ancient log we find this quaint note:
“ In clip it was discouvered yt ye troblesome rider hadde gone downe and got ye ground tackle, and toke ye same and solde it to ye dam sauvages from ye inside, stating yt he hadde founde it, ye sonne of a ghun! ”
Yet this ascendant had good and baronial inherent aptitudes, and it is with pride that we call to mind the fact that he was the first white individual who of all time interested himself in the work of promoting and educating our Indians. He built a convenient gaol and set up a gallows, and to his deceasing twenty-four hours he claimed with satisfaction that he had had a more restraining and promoting influence on the Indians than any other reformist that of all time labored among them. At this point the history becomes less blunt and gabby, and stopping points suddenly by stating that the old voyager went to see his gallows execute on the first white adult male of all time hanged in America, and while at that place received hurts which terminated in his decease.
The great-grandson of the “ Reformer ” flourished in 16 hundred and something, and was known in our annals as “ the old Admiral, ” though in history he had other rubrics. He was long in bid of fleets of Swift vass, good armed and manned, and did great service in travel rapidlying up bottoms. Vessels which he followed and kept his bird of Jove oculus on, ever made good just clip across the ocean. But if a ship still loitered in malice of all he could make, his outrage would turn till he could incorporate himself no longer — and so he would take that ship place where he lived and maintain it at that place carefully, anticipating the proprietors to come for it, but they ne’er did. And he would seek to acquire the idling and sloth out of the crewmans of that ship by obliging them to take invigorating exercising and a bath. He called it “ walking a board. ” All the students liked it. At any rate, they ne’er found any mistake with it after seeking it. When the proprietors were late coming for their ships, the Admiral ever burned them, so that the insurance money should non be lost. At last this all right old pitch was cut down in the comprehensiveness of his old ages and awards. And to her deceasing twenty-four hours, his hapless heart-broken widow believed that if he had been cut down 15 proceedingss sooner he might hold been resuscitated.
Charles Henry Twain lived during the latter portion of the 17th century, and was a avid and distinguished missionary. He converted 16 thousand South Sea island-dwellers, and taught them that a dog-tooth necklace and a brace of eyeglassess was non plenty vesture to come to divine service in. His hapless flock loved him really, really in a heartfelt way ; and when his funeral was over, they got up in a organic structure ( and came out of the eating house ) with cryings in their eyes, and stating, one to another, that he was a good stamp missionary, and they wished they had some more of him.
Pah-go-to-wah-wah-pukketekeewis ( Mighty-Hunter-with-a-Hog-Eye-Twain ) adorned the center of the 18th century, and aided General Braddock with all his bosom to defy the oppressor Washington. It was this ascendant who fired 17 times at our Washington from behind a tree. So far the beautiful romantic narration in the moral story-books is right ; but when that narrative goes on to state that at the 17th unit of ammunition the awe-stricken barbarian said solemnly that that adult male was being reserved by the Great Spirit for some mighty mission, and he dared non raise his blasphemous rifle against him once more, the narrative earnestly impairs the unity of history. What he did state was:
“ It ai n’t no ( hic ) no usage. ‘At adult male ‘s so intoxicated he ca n’t stan ‘ still long plenty for a adult male to hit him. I ( hic ) I ca n’t ‘ford to gull off any more am’nition on him. ”
That was why he stopped at the 17th unit of ammunition, and it was a good, field, prosaic ground, excessively, and one that easy commends itself to us by the eloquent, persuasive spirit of chance there is about it.
I besides enjoyed the story-book narrative, but I felt a marring scruple that every Indian at Braddock ‘s Defeat who fired at a soldier a twosome of times ( two easy grows to seventeen in a century ) , and missed him, jumped to the decision that the Great Spirit was reserving that soldier for some expansive mission ; and so I somehow feared that the lone ground why Washington ‘s instance is remembered and the others forgotten is, that in his the prognostication came true, and in that of the others it did n’t. There are non books plenty on Earth to incorporate the record of the prognostications Indians and other unauthorised parties have made ; but one may transport in his greatcoat pockets the record of all the prognostications that have been fulfilled.
I will note here, in passing, that certain ascendants of mine are so exhaustively well-known in history by their assumed names, that I have non felt it to be deserving while to brood upon them, or even advert them in the order of their birth. Among these may be mentioned Richard Brinsley Twain, alias Guy Fawkes ; John Wentworth Twain, alias Sixteen-String Jack ; William Hogarth Twain, alias Jack Sheppard ; Ananias Twain, alias Baron Munchausen ; John George Twain, a.k.a. Captain Kydd ; and so there are George Francis Twain, Tom Pepper, Nebuchadnezzar, and Baalam ‘s Ass — they all belong to our household, but to a subdivision of it slightly clearly removed from the honest direct line — in fact, a collateral subdivision, whose members chiefly differ from the ancient stock in that, in order to get the ill fame we have ever yearned and hungered for, they have got into a low manner of traveling to imprison alternatively of acquiring hanged.
It is non good, when composing an autobiography, to follow your lineage down excessively close to your ain clip — it is safest to talk merely mistily of your great-grandfather, and so skip from at that place to yourself, which I now do.
I was born without dentitions — and there Richard III. had the advantage of me ; but I was born without a kyphosis, likewise, and at that place I had the advantage of him. My parents were neither really hapless nor conspicuously honest.
But now a idea occurs to me. My ain history would truly look so tame contrasted with that of my ascendants, that it is merely wisdom to go forth it unwritten until I am hanged. If some other lifes I have read had stopped with the lineage until a similar event occurred, it would hold been a felicitous thing for the reading populace. How does it strike you?
A Child ‘s Christmas in Wales
by Dylan Thomas ( 1914-1953 )
Word Count: 3016
One Christmas was so much like another, in those old ages around the sea-town corner now and out of all sound except the distant speech production of the voices I sometimes hear a minute before slumber, that I can ne’er retrieve whether it snowed for six yearss and six darks when I was 12 or whether it snowed for 12 yearss and twelve darks when I was six.
All the Christmases roll down toward the two-tongued sea, like a cold and hasty Moon roll uping down the sky that was our street ; and they stop at the rim of the ice-edged fish-freezing moving ridges, and I plunge my custodies in the snow and convey out whatever I can happen. In goes my manus into that wool-white bell-tongued ball of vacations resting at the rim of the carol-singing sea, and out come Mrs. Prothero and the firemen.
It was on the afternoon of the Christmas Eve, and I was in Mrs. Prothero ‘s garden, waiting for cats, with her boy Jim. It was snowing. It was ever snowing at Christmas. December, in my memory, is white as Lapland, though there were no caribous. But there were cats. Patient, cold and indurate, our custodies wrapped in socks, we waited to snowball the cats. Sleek and long as panthers and horrible-whiskered, ptyalizing and snaping, they would slink and sidle over the white back-garden walls, and the argus-eyed huntsmans, Jim and I, fur-capped and moccasined trappers from Hudson Bay, off Mumbles Road, would hurtle our deathly sweet sand verbenas at the viridity of their eyes. The wise cats ne’er appeared.
We were so still, Eskimo-footed north-polar sharpshooters in the muffling silence of the ageless snows – eternal, of all time since Wednesday – that we ne’er heard Mrs. Prothero ‘s first call from her iglu at the underside of the garden. Or, if we heard it at all, it was, to us, like the faraway challenge of our enemy and quarry, the neighbour ‘s polar cat. But shortly the voice grew louder.
“ Fire! ” cried Mrs. Prothero, and she beat the dinner-gong.
And we ran down the garden, with the sweet sand verbenas in our weaponries, toward the house ; and smoke, so, was pouring out of the dining room, and the tam-tam was buzzing, and Mrs. Prothero was denoting ruin like a town weeper in Pompeii. This was better than all the cats in Wales standing on the wall in a row. We bounded into the house, loaded with sweet sand verbenas, and stopped at the unfastened door of the smoke-filled room.
Something was firing wholly right ; possibly it was Mr. Prothero, who ever slept at that place after noon dinner with a newspaper over his face. But he was standing in the center of the room, stating, “ A all right Yule! ” and thwacking at the fume with a slipper.
“ Name the fire brigade, ” cried Mrs. Prothero as she beat the tam-tam. “ There wo n’t be at that place, ” said Mr. Prothero, “ it ‘s Christmas. ” There was no fire to be seen, merely clouds of fume and Mr. Prothero standing in the center of them, beckoning his slipper as though he were carry oning.
“ Do something, ” he said. And we threw all our sweet sand verbenas into the fume – I think we missed Mr. Prothero – and ran out of the house to the telephone box.
“ Let ‘s name the constabulary every bit good, ” Jim said. “ And the ambulance. ” “ And Ernie Jenkins, he likes fires. ”
But we merely called the fire brigade, and shortly the fire engine came and three tall work forces in helmets brought a hosiery into the house and Mr. Prothero got out merely in clip before they turned it on. Cipher could hold had a noisy Christmas Eve. And when the firemen turned off the hosiery and were standing in the moisture, smoky room, Jim ‘s Aunt, Miss. Prothero, came downstairs and peered in at them. Jim and I waited, really softly, to hear what she would state to them. She said the right thing, ever. She looked at the three tall firemen in their shining helmets, standing among the fume and clinkers and fade outing sweet sand verbenas, and she said, “ Would you like anything to read? ”
Old ages and old ages ago, when I was a male child, when there were wolves in Wales, and birds the colour of red-flannel half-slips whisked past the harp-shaped hills, when we sang and wallowed all dark and twenty-four hours in caves that smelt like Sunday afternoons in moist forepart farmhouse parlours, and we chased, with the lower jaws of deacons, the English and the bears, before the motor auto, before the wheel, before the duchess-faced Equus caballus, when we rode the daft and happy hills bareback, it snowed and it snowed. But here a little male child says: “ It snowed last twelvemonth, excessively. I made a snowman and my brother knocked it down and I knocked my brother down and so we had tea. ”
“ But that was non the same snow, ” I say. “ Our snow was non merely shaken from white wash pails down the sky, it came shawling out of the land and swam and drifted out of the weaponries and custodies and organic structures of the trees ; snow grew nightlong on the roofs of the houses like a pure and gramps moss, circumstantially ivied the walls and settled on the mailman, opening the gate, like a dumb, asleep thunder-storm of white, lacerate Christmas cards. ”
“ Were there mailmans so, excessively? ”
“ With scattering eyes and wind-cherried olfactory organs, on spread, frozen pess they crunched up to the doors and mittened on them manly. But all that the kids could hear was a tintinnabulation of bells. ”
“ You mean that the postman went rat-tat and the doors rang? ”
“ I mean that the bells the kids could hear were inside them. ”
“ I merely hear boom sometimes, ne’er bells. ”
“ There were church bells, excessively. ”
“ Inside them? ”
“ No, no, no, in the bat-black, snowy campaniles, tugged by bishops and storks. And they rang their newss over the bound town, over the frozen froth of the pulverization and ice-cream hills, over the crepitating sea. It seemed that all the churches boomed for joy under my window ; and the weathercocks crew for Christmas, on our fencing. ”
“ Get back to the mailmans. ”
“ They were merely ordinary mailmans, found of walking and Canis familiariss and Christmas and the snow. They knocked on the doors with bluish brass knuckss. . . . ”
“ Ours has got a black knocker. . . . ”
“ And so they stood on the white Welcome mat in the small, drifted porches and huffed and puffed, doing shades with their breath, and jogged from pes to pick like little male childs desiring to travel out. ”
“ And so the nowadayss? ”
“ And so the Presents, after the Christmas box. And the cold mailman, with a rose on his button-nose, tingled down the tea-tray-slithered tally of the chilly glinting hill. He went in his ice-bound boots like a adult male on fishwife ‘s slabs.
“ He wagged his bag like a frozen camel ‘s bulge, giddily turned the corner on one pes, and, by God, he was gone. ”
“ Get back to the Presents. ”
“ There were the Useful Presents: steeping silencers of the old manager yearss, and mittens made for elephantine sloths ; zebra scarfs of a substance like satiny gum that could be tug-o’-warred down to the arctics ; blinding tammies like hodgepodge tea cosies and bunny-suited bearskins and balaclavas for victims of head-shrinking folks ; from aunts who ever wore wool following to the tegument there were mustached and rasping waistcoats that made you inquire why the aunts had any skin left at all ; and one time I had a small crocheted nose bag from an aunt now, alas, no longer neighing with us. And pictureless books in which little male childs, though warned with citations non to, would skate on Farmer Giles ‘ pool and did and drowned ; and books that told me everything about the WASP, except why. ”
“ Travel on the Useless Presents. ”
“ Bags of moist and many-colored gelatin babes and a folded flag and a false olfactory organ and a tram-conductor ‘s cap and a machine that punched tickets and peal a bell ; ne’er a slingshot ; one time, by error that no 1 could explicate, a small tomahawk ; and a synthetic duck that made, when you pressed it, a most unducklike sound, a mewing moo that an ambitious cat might do who wished to be a cow ; and a picture book in which I could do the grass, the trees, the sea and the animate beings any coloring material I pleased, and still the eye-popping azure sheep are croping in the ruddy field under the rainbow-billed and pea-green birds. Hardboileds, brittle, fudge and allsorts, crunches, cracknels, baloneies, glaciers, marchpane, and butterwelsh for the Welsh. And military personnels of bright Sn soldiers who, if they could non contend, could ever run. And Snakes-and-Families and Happy Ladders. And Easy Hobbi-Games for Little Engineers, complete with instructions. Oh, easy for Leonardo! And a whistling to do the Canis familiariss bark to wake up the old adult male following door to do him crush on the wall with his stick to agitate our image off the wall. And a package of coffin nails: you put one in your oral cavity and you stood at the corner of the street and you waited for hours, in vain, for an old lady to call on the carpet you for smoking a coffin nail, and so with a smirk you ate it. And so it was breakfast under the balloons. ”
“ Were there Uncles like in our house? ”
“ There are ever Uncles at Christmas. The same Uncles. And on Christmas forenoon, with dog-disturbing whistling and sugar fairies, I would scour the swatched town for the intelligence of the small universe, and happen ever a dead bird by the Post Office or by the white abandoned swings ; possibly a redbreast, all but one of his fires out. Work force and adult females wading or lift outing back from chapel, with barroom olfactory organs and wind-bussed cheeks, all albinos, powwows their stiff black clashing plumes against the irreligious snow. Mistletoe hung from the gas brackets in all the front parlours ; there was sherry and walnuts and bottled beer and crackers by the dessertspoons ; and cats in their fur-abouts watched the fires ; and the high-heaped fire bicker, all ready for the chestnuts and the mulling fire hooks. Some few big work forces sat in the forepart parlours, without their neckbands, Uncles about surely, seeking their new cigars, keeping them out judiciously at weaponries ‘ length, returning them to their oral cavities, coughing, so keeping them out once more as though waiting for the detonation ; and some few little aunts, non wanted in the kitchen, nor anyplace else for that affair, sat on the really border of their chairs, poised and brickle, afraid to interrupt, like faded cups and disks. ”
Not many those forenoons trod the stacking streets: an old adult male ever, fawn-bowlered, yellow-gloved and, at this clip of twelvemonth, with bickers of snow, would take his constitutional to the white bowling viridity and back, as he would take it wet or fire on Christmas Day or Doomsday ; sometimes two whole immature work forces, with large pipes blazing, no greatcoats and weave blown scarfs, would slog, unspeaking, down to the forlorn sea, to work up an appetency, to blow away the exhausts, who knows, to walk into the moving ridges until nil of them was left but the two roll uping smoke clouds of their inextinguishable sweetbriers. Then I would be slap-dashing place, the gravy odor of the dinners of others, the bird odor, the brandy, the pudding and mince, gyrating up to my anterior nariss, when out of a snow-clogged side lane would come a male child the tongue of myself, with a pink-tipped coffin nail and the violet yesteryear of a black oculus, cocky as a Bullfinch, leering all to himself.
I hated him on sight and sound, and would be about to set my Canis familiaris whistling to my lips and blow him off the face of Christmas when all of a sudden he, with a violet blink of an eye, put his whistling to his lips and blew so stridently, so high, so finely loud, that bolting faces, their cheeks bulged with goose, would press against their tinsled Windowss, the whole length of the white echoing street. For dinner we had Meleagris gallopavo and blazing pudding, and after dinner the Uncles sat in forepart of the fire, loosened all buttons, put their big moist custodies over their ticker ironss, groaned a small and slept. Mothers, aunts and sisters scuttled to and fro, bearing tureens. Auntie Bessie, who had already been frightened, twice, by a clock-work mouse, whimpered at the sideboard and had some elderberry vino. The Canis familiaris was ill. Auntie Dosie had to hold three acetylsalicylic acids, but Auntie Hannah, who liked port, stood in the center of the snowbound back yard, singing like a big-bosomed thrush. I would blow up balloons to see how large they would blow up to ; and, when they burst, which they all did, the Uncles jumped and rumbled. In the rich and heavy afternoon, the Uncles external respiration like mahimahis and the snow descending, I would sit among festoons and Chinese lanterns and nibble day of the months and seek to do a theoretical account man-o’-war, following the Instructions for Little Engineers, and bring forth what might be mistaken for a sea-going tramcar.
Or I would travel out, my bright new boots whining, into the white universe, on to the seaward hill, to name on Jim and Dan and Jack and to embroider through the still streets, go forthing immense footmarks on the concealed pavings.
“ I bet people will believe there ‘s been hippos. ”
“ What would you make if you saw a Hippo coming down our street? ”
“ I ‘d travel like this, knock! I ‘d throw him over the railings and axial rotation him down the hill and so I ‘d titillate him under the ear and he ‘d wag his tail. ”
“ What would you make if you saw two Hippo? ”
Iron-flanked and bawling he-hippos clanked and battered through the scudding snow toward us as we passed Mr. Daniel ‘s house.
“ Let ‘s post Mr. Daniel a snow-ball through his missive box. ”
“ Let ‘s write things in the snow. ”
“ Let ‘s write, ‘Mr. Daniel looks like a spaniel ‘ all over his lawn. ”
Or we walked on the white shore. “ Can the fishes see it ‘s snowing? ”
The soundless one-clouded celestial spheres drifted on to the sea. Now we were snow-blind travellers lost on the north hills, and huge dewlapped Canis familiariss, with flasks round their cervixs, ambled and shambled up to us, baying “ Excelsior. ”
We returned home through the hapless streets where merely a few kids fumbled with bare ruddy fingers in the wheel-rutted snow and cat-called after us, their voices melting off, as we trudged acclivitous, into the calls of the dock birds and the hooting of ships out in the gyration bay. And so, at tea the cured Uncles would be reasonably ; and the ice bar loomed in the centre of the tabular array like a marble grave. Auntie Hannah laced her tea with rum, because it was merely one time a twelvemonth.
Bringing out the tall narratives now that we told by the fire as the gaslight bubbled like a frogman. Ghosts whooed like bird of Minerva in the long darks when I dared non expression over my shoulder ; animate beings lurked in the pigeonhole under the stepss and the gas metre ticked. And I remember that we went singing carols one time, when there was n’t the shave of a Moon to illume the winging streets.
At the terminal of a long route was a thrust that led to a big house, and we stumbled up the darkness of the thrust that dark, each one of us afraid, each one keeping a rock in his manus in instance, and all of us excessively brave to state a word. The air current through the trees made noises as of old and unpleasant and possibly webfooted work forces wheezing in caves. We reached the black majority of the house. “ What shall we give them? Hark the Herald? ”
“ No, ” Jack said, “ Good King Wencelas. I ‘ll number three. ” One, two three, and we began to sing, our voices high and apparently distant in the snow-felted darkness round the house that was occupied by cipher we knew.
We stood close together, near the dark door. Good King Wencelas looked out On the Feast of Stephen. . . And so a little, dry voice, like the voice of person who has non spoken for a long clip, joined our vocalizing: a little, dry, eggshell voice from the other side of the door: a little dry voice through the keyhole. And when we stopped running we were outdoors our house ; the forepart room was lovely ; balloons floated under the hot-water-bottle-gulping gas ; everything was good once more and shone over the town.
“ Possibly it was a shade, ” Jim said. “ Possibly it was trolls, ” Dan said, who was ever reading.
“ Let ‘s travel in and see if there ‘s any jelly left, ” Jack said. And we did that.
Always on Christmas dark at that place was music. An uncle played the violin, a cousin American ginseng “ Cherry Ripe, ” and another uncle American ginseng “ Drake ‘s Drum. ” It was really warm in the small house. Auntie Hannah, who had got on to the parsnip vino, sang a vocal about Bleeding Hearts and Death, and so another in which she said her bosom was like a Bird ‘s Nest ; and so everybody laughed once more ; and so I went to bed. Looking through my sleeping room window, out into the moonshine and the ageless smoke-colored snow, I could see the visible radiations in the Windowss of all the other houses on our hill and hear the music lifting from them up the long, steady falling dark. I turned the gas down, I got into bed. I said some words to the stopping point and sanctum darkness, and so I slept.