The Next of Kin eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 176 pages of information about The Next of Kin.
in the morning and found it standing, I knew I was there first.  I pulled it out and laid it down, so when Alex came he knew I had passed, and hurried along after me.  When he came first and found it standing, he always waited for me, if he could, for he would rather be late than go without me.  When I got the message I could not think of anything but the loneliness of the world, for a few days; but after a while I realized what it meant ...  Alex had passed ... the willow was down ... but he’ll wait for me some place ... nothing is surer than that!  I am not lonely now....  Alex and I are closer together than plenty of people who are living side by side.  Distance is a matter of spirit ... like everything else that counts.

“I am getting on well.  The children are at school now, both of them,—­they sit in the same seats we sat in,—­the crops are in good shape—­did you ever see a finer stand of wild hay?  I can manage the farm, with one extra hired man in harvest-time.  Alex went out on the crest of the wave—­he had just been recommended for promotion—­the children will always have a proud memory.

“This is a great country, isn’t it?  Where can you find such abundance, and such a climate, with its sunshine and its cool nights, and such a chance to make good?...  I suppose freedom has to be paid for.  We thought the people long ago had paid for it, but another installment of the debt fell due.  Freedom is like a farm—­it has to be kept up.  It is worth something to have a chance to work and bring up my children—­in peace—­so I am living on from day to day ... not grieving ... not moping ... not thinking too much,—­it hurts to think too hard,—­just living.”

Then we shook hands, and I told her that she had found something far greater than happiness, for she had achieved power!

* * * * *

There is a fine rainbow in the sky this evening, so bright and strong that it shows again in a reflected bow on the clouds behind it.  A rainbow is a heartsome thing, for it reminds us of a promise made long ago, and faithfully kept.

There is shadow and shine, sorrow and joy, all the way along.  This is inevitable, and so we must take them as they come, and rejoice over every sunny hour of every day, or, if the day is all dark, we must go hopefully forward through the gloom.

To-day has been fine.  There was one spattering shower, which pebbled the dusty roads, and a few crashes of rolling thunder.  But the western sky is red now, giving promise of a good day to-morrow.


  O Thou, who once Thine own Son gave
    To save the world from sin,
  Draw near in pity now we crave
    To all the Next of Kin. 
  To Thee we make our humble prayer
  To save us from despair!

  Send sleep to all the hearts that wake;
    Send tears into the eyes that burn;
  Steady the trembling hands that shake;
    Comfort all hearts that mourn. 
  But most of all, dear Lord, we pray
  For strength to see us through this day.

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The Next of Kin from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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