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Now his attention was fixed on all the possible crutches. The trees seemed full of them, but all at impossible heights. It was long before he found one that he could cut with his knife. Certainly he was 5 an hour working at it; then he heard a sound that made his blood jump.
From far away in the north came, faint but reaching, “Ye-hoo-o.”
Rolf dropped his knife and listened with the in10 stinctively open mouth that takes all pressure from
the eardrums and makes them keen. It came again : “Ye-hoo-o.” No mistake now, and Rolf sent the ringing answer back:
“Ye-hoo-o, ye-hoo-o.”. 15 In ten minutes there was a sharp "yap, yap," and
Skookum bounded out of the woods to leap and bark around Rolf, as though he knew all about it; while a few minutes later, came Quonab striding.
"Ho, boy,” he said, with a quiet smile, and took 20 Rolf's hand. “Ugh! That was good,” and he nodded to the smoke fire. “I knew you were in trouble."
“Yes,” and Rolf pointed to the swollen ankle.
The Indian picked up the lad in his arms and carried him back to the little camp. Then, from his light 25 pack, he took bread and tea and made a meal for both. And, as they ate, each heard the other's tale.
“I was troubled when you did not come back last night, for you had no food or blanket. I did not sleep. At dawn I went to the hill, where I pray, and looked
away southeast where you went in the canoe. I saw nothing. Then I went to a higher hill, where I could see the northeast, and even while I watched, I saw the two smokes, so I knew my son was alive.”
“You mean to tell me I am northeast of camp?” 5
“About four miles. I did not come very quickly, because I had to go for the canoe and travel here."
“How do you mean by canoe?” said Rolf, in surprise.
“You are only half a mile from Jesup River," was the reply. “I soon bring you home.”
10 It was incredible at first, but easy of proof. With the hatchet they made a couple of serviceable crutches and set out together.
In twenty minutes they were afloat in the canoe ; in an hour they were safely home again.
15 And Rolf pondered it not a little. At the very moment of blackest despair, the way had opened, and it had been so simple, so natural, so effectual. Surely, as long as he lived, he would remember it — “There is always a way, and the stout heart will find it.”
QUESTIONS AND SUGGESTIONS FOR DISCUSSION 1. From what story is this 14. Describe the feeling of be
selection taken? Have ing lost in the woods.
5. What did Rolf do that made 2. Who wrote this story? him forget to watch in
Have you read any of what direction he was his books?
going? 3. Describe northern New 6. How did he find that he had
York as it was in 1807. I been traveling in a circle?
7. What had an old guide said |14. How did Quonab tell Rolf
to him about getting lost ? that he had secured help 8. What wise thing did Rolf when he was a little boy
do when he found that and got lost? What does he was lost?
“ double for trouble" 9. How did he provide food mean? for himself ?
15. How did Rolf use the idea 10. How did he get hurt?
of “ double for trouble" 11. How did he spend the to enable Quonab to find
night? Would you have him?
for Quonab's signal? 12. Tell how Rolf was surprised Have you ever tried it?
at the direction of the 17. How far was Rolf from sun when it rose the next| camp when he was found? morning.
18. What fine lesson is found 13. What had an old pioneer in the last line of the
told him to do when in story?
The brave man is not he who feels no fear,
We can never be sure of our courage until we have faced danger.
FRANÇOIS LA ROCHEFOUCAULD
DRIVING HOME THE COWS
KATE PUTNAM OSGOOD
This poem has in it not only beautiful pictures, but also a delightful story.
The time is during the War between the States, 1861–1865.
Let us picture a farm and an old farmhouse. It is a very quiet household, consisting of a father, a mother, and a lad of about seventeen years of age. Why is it so quiet and so serious in this home? Because two elder sons have gone to war and have been killed in battle.
And now the lad, the youngest and the last of three sons, wants to enlist. The father and the mother feel that they cannot give him up, for he is “ only a boy.”
Now let us turn to the lad.
Read the first and second stanzas in silence slowly, seeing him drive home the cows. Where does he drive them from? Can you see and hear him letting down and putting up the old bars? Can you see the cows passing through? Can you see the lad as, his head held thoughtfully low, he follows the cows home to the barnyard and then milks them and does his other chores?
Then what does he do? Read stanzas 4 and 5. Can you see him as he slips away to enlist?
Here, in the poem, is a very long period of waiting, for, as you will find as you read, three years pass by, and then the old father and the sad, gentle old mother get news —
“That three were lying where two had lain, And the old man's tremulous, palsied arm Could never lean on a son's again.”
You should stop at this place and try to see the old father and mother as they go about the house and farm, with faces very sad and in silence most of the time. They have no sons now. They think that all three are asleep beneath the sods of the battlefield.
And now the old man himself has to bring home the cows. But you will enjoy finding out for yourself what happens when he goes for them one summer evening. Try hard to see all that occurs as he starts out for them that evening. Imagine how he peers at the stranger who is bringing home the cows. Imagine how they clasp hands, but can not say a word when they meet.
DRIVING HOME THE Cows
Out of the clover and blue-eyed grass
He turned them into the river-lane;
Then fastened the meadow-bars again.
He patiently followed their sober pace;
And something shadowed the sunny face.
Only a boy! and his father had said
He never could let his youngest go:
Under the feet of the trampling foe.