LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS
“I reckon the thing sort o’ got started last summer”
“Seem to me he favors her a little thess aroun’ the mouth”
“Quick ez he see the clock, he come thoo”
“She does make ‘im so contented an’ happy”
“Name this child”
“An’ then Sonny, seein’ it all over, he come down”
“He was watchin’ a bird-nest on the way to that school”
“He had been playin’ out o’ doors bare-feeted”
“Any question he missed was to be
passed on to them thet had been
grad’jatin’ so fast”
“‘This orange is the earth, an’ this here apple is the sun’”
“What could be sweeter ’n little Mary Elizabeth?”
“When I set here by myself on this po’ch so much these days an’ think”
“Seem like a person don’t
no mo’’n realize he’s a descendant
A CHRISTMAS GUEST
Boy, you say, doctor? An’ she don’t know it yet? Then what ’re you tellin’ me for? No, sir—take it away. I don’t want to lay my eyes on it till she’s saw it—not if I am its father. She’s its mother, I reckon!
Better lay it down somew’eres an’ go to her—not there on the rockin’-cheer, for somebody to set on—’n’ not on the trunk, please. That ain’t none o’ yo’ ord’nary new-born bundles, to be dumped on a box that’ll maybe be opened sudden d’rec’ly for somethin’ needed, an’ be dropped ag’in’ the wall-paper behind it.
It’s hers, whether she knows it or not. Don’t, for gracious sakes, lay ’im on the table! Anybody knows that’s bad luck.
You think it might bother her on the bed? She’s that bad? An’ they ain’t no fire kindled in the settin’-room, to lay it in there.
S-i-r? Well, yas, I—I reck’n I’ll haf to hold it, ef you say so—that is—of co’se—
Wait, doctor! Don’t let go of it yet! Lordy! but I’m thess shore to drop it! Lemme set down first, doctor, here by the fire an’ git het th’ugh. Not yet! My ol’ shin-bones stan’ up thess like a pair o’ dog-irons. Lemme bridge ’em over first ‘th somethin’ soft. That’ll do. She patched that quilt herself. Hold on a minute, ’tel I git the aidges of it under my ol’ boots, to keep it f’om saggin’ down in the middle.
There, now! Merciful goodness, but I never! I’d rather trus’ myself with a whole playin’ fountain in blowed glass’n sech ez this.
Stoop down there, doctor, please, sir, an’ shove the end o’ this quilt a leetle further under my foot, won’t you? Ef it was to let up sudden, I wouldn’t have no more lap ’n what any other fool man’s got.
‘N’ now—you go to her.