Page:Pieces People Ask For.djvu/193

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75
THE READING-CLUB.

have taken a fancy to him, and incorporated him into the firm, so to speak. He was down underneath, straddling one of the legs, with his head jammed into the mattress. Nobody dared to touch it. The landlady got a club and reached for its vital parts, but could not find them. She hammered her breath away; and when she got through, and dropped the club in despair, the thing spread out its arms with a gasp and a rattle, turned over twice, and slapped itself into a bed again, with Buffum peacefully among the sheets. He held his breath for a minute; and then, watching his opportunity, made a flying-leap to the floor, just in time to save himself from being a folding-screen.

A man with a black eye and cut lip told the "Wasp" editor about it yesterday. He said he owned the patent, that Buffum had been explaining to him how it worked.

From the San Francisco "Wasp."

"MAGDALENA."

Sat we 'neath the dark veranda,
Years and years ago;
And I softly pressed a hand a
Deal more white than snow;
And I cast aside my reina,
As I gazed upon her face,
And I read her-Alagdalena,"
While she smoothed her Spanish lace-
Read her Waller's "Magdalena"—
She had Magdalena's grace,
Read her of the Spanish duel,
Of the brother, courtly, cruel,
Who between the British wooer
And the Seville lady came:
How her lover promptly slew her
Brother, and then fled in shame—
How he dreamed, in long years after,
Of the river's rippling laughter—
Of the love he used to know,
In the myrtle-curtained villa,
Near the city of Sevilla,
Years and years ago.