“It shall go with us to the house of God,” said the wife, turning to her husband. He nodded, and then she broke off the flower. The wife looked at the husband, and he looked at her, and then their eyes rested on both children; then their eyes grew dim, but became immediately bright again, for the tears were not of sorrow, but of happiness.
When the organ’s tones swelled and the people sang in the temple, the flower folded its petals, for it had fulfilled its mission; but on the waves of song its perfume floated upwards. And in the sweet fragrance lay a warm thanksgiving from the little seed-down.
From “My Lady Legend,” translated from the Swedish by Miss Rydingsvaerd.
Used by the special permission of the publishers, Lothrop, Lee & Shepard Co.
* * * * *
I want it to be said of me by those who know me best that I have always plucked a thistle and planted a flower in its place wherever a flower would grow.
* * * * *
lux’u ry med’i cine a bun’dant wil’der ness
THE USE OF FLOWERS.
God might have bade the earth
Enough for great and small,
The oak tree, and the cedar tree,
Without a flower at all.
He might have made enough, enough,
For every want of ours;
For luxury, medicine, and toil,
And yet have made no flowers.
The ore within the mountain
Requireth none to grow,
Nor doth it need the lotus flower
To make the river flow.
The clouds might give abundant
The nightly dews might fall,
And the herb that keepeth life in man
Might yet have drunk them all.
Then wherefore, wherefore were
All dyed with rainbow light,
All fashioned with supremest grace,
Upspringing day and night—
Springing in valleys green and
And on the mountains high,
And in the silent wilderness,
Where no man passeth by?
Our outward life requires them
Then wherefore had they birth?
To minister delight to man,
To beautify the earth;
To whisper hope—to
Whene’er his faith is dim;
For whoso careth for the flowers
Will care much more for Him!
* * * * *
Give the plural forms of the following name-words: tree, leaf, copy, foot, shoe, calf, life, child, tooth, valley.
Insert the proper punctuation marks in the following stanza:
In the country on every side
Where far and wide
Like a leopard’s tawny hide
Stretches the plain
To the dry grass and drier grain
How welcome is the rain.
Full many a gem of purest ray
The dark unfathom’d caves of ocean bear;
Full many a flower is born to blush unseen,
And waste its sweetness on the desert air.