Page:Abraham Lincoln, A Story and a Play.djvu/26

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20
ABRAHAM LINCOLN

hum-drum ploughing and wood chopping were forgotten, for the young fellow was living in thought in the big, outside world.

After such days in court, Abraham could often be seen standing in the middle of the field, when he should have been at work, repeating the speeches he had heard to a crowd of neighbors. So well did he speak, that they, too, forgot the work in hand, and were carried far away from their backwood's home.

Now, in the books Abraham read, and in the talks and speeches he heard, there were words whose meaning he did not know, and expressions that were not clear. Then he was much troubled. He would spend a long time thinking over the matter and trying to understand.

At such times he would say to himself something like this, "Whenever I speak to others, no matter what the subject may be, it shall be said so clearly and simply, that every one will understand me."

He kept his word. In the great speeches he afterwards made—speeches which stirred the hearts of all who heard them and which will live forever, his words were so clear and simple that everyone could understand.