Cobwebs from an Empty Skull eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 156 pages of information about Cobwebs from an Empty Skull.

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THE SETTING SACHEM.

  ’Twas an Injin chieftain, in feathers all fine,
    Who stood on the ocean’s rim;
  There were numberless leagues of excellent brine—­
    But there wasn’t enough for him. 
  So he knuckled a thumb in his painted eye,
  And added a tear to the scant supply.

  The surges were breaking with thund’rous voice,
    The winds were a-shrieking shrill;
  This warrior thought that a trifle of noise
    Was needed to fill the bill. 
  So he lifted the top of his head off and scowled—­
  Exalted his voice, did this chieftain, and howled!

  The sun was aflame in a field of gold
    That hung o’er the Western Sea;
  Bright banners of light were broadly unrolled,
    As banners of light should be. 
  But no one was “speaking a piece” to that sun,
  And therefore this Medicine Man begun: 

  “O much heap of bright!  O big ball of warm! 
    I’ve tracked you from sea to sea! 
  For the Paleface has been at some pains to inform
    Me, you are the emblem of me
  He says to me, cheerfully:  ‘Westward Ho!’
  And westward I’ve hoed a most difficult row.

  “Since you are the emblem of me, I presume
    That I am the emblem of you,
  And thus, as we’re equals, ’t is safe to assume,
    That one great law governs us two. 
  So now if I set in the ocean with thee,
  With thee I shall rise again out of the sea.”

  His eloquence first, and his logic the last! 
    Such orators die!—­and he died: 
  The trump was against him—­his luck bad—­he “passed”—­
    And so he “passed out”—­with the tide. 
  This Injin is rid of the world with a whim—­
  The world it is rid of his speeches and him.

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FEODORA.

Madame Yonsmit was a decayed gentlewoman who carried on her decomposition in a modest wayside cottage in Thuringia.  She was an excellent sample of the Thuringian widow, a species not yet extinct, but trying very hard to become so.  The same may be said of the whole genus.  Madame Yonsmit was quite young, very comely, cultivated, gracious, and pleasing.  Her home was a nest of domestic virtues, but she had a daughter who reflected but little credit upon the nest.  Feodora was indeed a “bad egg”—­a very wicked and ungrateful egg.  You could see she was by her face.  The girl had the most vicious countenance—­it was repulsive!  It was a face in which boldness struggled for the supremacy with cunning, and both were thrashed into subjection by avarice.  It was this latter virtue in Feodora which kept her mother from having a taxable income.

Feodora’s business was to beg on the highway.  It wrung the heart of the honest amiable gentlewoman to have her daughter do this; but the h.a.g. having been reared in luxury, considered labour degrading—­which it is—­and there was not much to steal in that part of Thuringia.  Feodora’s mendicity would have provided an ample fund for their support, but unhappily that ingrate would hardly ever fetch home more than two or three shillings at a time.  Goodness knows what she did with the rest.

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Cobwebs from an Empty Skull from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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