The Last West and Paolo's Virginia eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 24 pages of information about The Last West and Paolo's Virginia.
  Was like an arm outstretched. 
  He pulled himself hand over hand
  Until his feet could feel the sand
  By eddying currents fetched. 
  His pack was soaked with water through,
  There was no trail ahead he knew,
  But still kept on his way;
  And with determination strong
  Struggled the beach and cliffs along
  While held the light each day. 
  At length he reached the little creek,
  The which he had set out to seek,
  And found some partners there. 
  They had begun to pan the sand
  Which proved to be a golden strand
  At last to them laid bare. 
  One day in camp the word went round
  That Jake and all his crew had drowned
  Between the canyon walls. 
  Their staunch canoe was seen upturned
  Where white the boiling rapids churned
  Below the waterfalls.

* * * *

  Small wonder if Jan’s conscience woke
  And if that moral guardian spoke
  In accusation strong
  Against the words he had let fall,
  Beyond the power of recall,
  To get revenge for wrong.

[1]Skookum—­a Chinook word, meaning strong.

[2]Sourdough—­a seasoned prospector.

The Survey Cook

  Deep in the Sunset Valley
  Ill fortune had detained;
  Bacon and beans were finished;
  Of flour, none remained.

  But now with tents and blankets,
  Facing the backward track,
  All hands were feeling cheerful
  Save the cook—­his looks were black.

  They’d packed across the mountains
  Where trails were never known,
  Through leagues of heavy timber
  And rock slides overgrown;

  Had bridged the swollen torrents
  By felling trees across;
  And scrambled through the canyons
  That walled the river’s course.

  The horses of the pack train
  Had died in dark despair
  When brought to face the prospect
  Of using goat trails there;

  So man a beast of burden
  Himself was forced to be;
  The crew packed grub and blankets
  And the cook the cutlery,

  The dishpans and the kettles,
  The basins and a pot,
  A battered old reflector,
  Cups, bowls and plates, Great Scott!

  Cymbals and drums weren’t in it
  When cook did have a spill;
  The crash of warlike music
  Echoed from hill to hill

  As down his pack came bounding,
  Spurning the canyon walls,
  Scattering pots and dishes,
  Leaping the waterfalls.

  The packers looked in terror
  To see the cook come too
  As past their dizzy erie
  The clanging luggage flew;

  When anxiously they hailed him,
  The cook, he only swore: 
  “If I survive this picnic
  So help me—­nevermore.”

A Raid on the Seal Rookeries

  The tale was told by a hunter bold
    Of a sealing schooner’s crew,
  Of a midnight raid where the breakers played
    On reefs that the offing strew.

Project Gutenberg
The Last West and Paolo's Virginia from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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