Walter Harland eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 175 pages of information about Walter Harland.
a warning that was one.’  ‘I believe’, said he, ’that some of the boys that know how foolish you are, are trying to frighten you.’  ‘I wonder which was most frightened’, said I, ’for I didn’t upset the yeast jar at any rate,’ and the next day when we got word that old Mr. Harris died at nine o’clock the night before, he looked kind o’ sober, and said, ’well it is singular, that is certain,’ and I could never get another word out of him about it, but you may know he thought it was a serious matter, for the very next time he went over to the village he brought me home a much nicer jar than the old one, without me as much as reminding him of it, and most always I have to tell him half a dozen times before I can get him to remember any little thing of that kind.”  They went on with their work for a few moments in silence, when the Widow Green, sinking her voice almost to a whisper, said:  “I will tell you, Mrs. Waters, but you mustn’t mention it for the world, we had two warnings over at our house of Grandma Adams’ death.  It’s better than a month ago, I dreamed of bein’ over here, helping to make up all kinds of finery for a weddin’, and you know to dream of a weddin’ is a sure sign of a funeral; and the next mornin’ I said to my daughter Matilda Ann, there will certainly be a death over at Nathan Adams’ before long.  I didn’t say nothin’ to any one else, but kept kind o’ ponderin’ it in my mind, and then one night, about sunset, last week, our dog Rover went over on the hill and sat with his face toward here and give the mournfulest howls I ever did hear.  I sent my boy Archibald to call him in, for I couldn’t bear to hear it.  The dog wouldn’t stir, and the boy dragged him into the house by main strength, and I shut him up in the back-kitchen, but the first time the door was opened he sprung out, in less than a minnit he was over on the hill again, and set up them awful howls a second time, and if that wasn’t a warnin’ I don’t know what would be one.”  The widow had a very appreciative listener in the person of Mrs. Waters, and I know not how many experiences of a similar kind might have been related, had not the entrance of my aunt put a sudden check upon their conversation; for they both knew her sufficiently well, to be aware that a conversation of this kind would not for a moment be tolerated in her hearing.  It was something entirely new to me, and it kept me awake for a long time after I retired to rest.  Can it be, thought I, that an All-wise Providence makes known by such means, events which are not revealed to the wisest and best of mankind:  and young as I was, I banished the idea, as an absurdity, and to quiet my mind, I began repeating to myself what had been grandma’s favorite psalm, and before I reached the close fell quietly asleep.  In after years, the conversation between these two women often recurred to my mind, and more than once I have smiled at the recollection of the broken yeast-jar.

But they verily believed their own statements, having listened to stories of a similar kind since their own childhood; a belief in them almost formed a part of their education, and having never set reason at work upon the subject, they were sincere in their belief that events are often foreshadowed by those superstitious signs which formed the topic of their conversation.

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Walter Harland from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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