Page:Pieces People Ask For.djvu/215

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97
THE READING-CLUB.

Her neighbors are bearing between them
Something straight to her door:
Her child is coming home, but not
As he ever came before!

"He is dead!" she cries; "my darling!"
And the startled father hears,
And comes and looks the way she looks,
And fears the thing she fears:
Till a glad shout from the bearers
Thrills the stricken man and wife—
"Give thanks, for your son has saved our land,
And God has saved his life!"
So, there in the morning sunshine
They knelt about the boy;
And every head was bared and bent
In tearful, reverent joy.

'Tis many a year since then; but still,
When the sea roars like a flood,
Their boys are taught what a boy can do
Who is brave and true and good.
I For every man in that country
Takes his son by the hand,
And tells him of little Peter,
Whose courage saved the land.
They have many a valiant hero
Remembered through the years,
But never one whose name so oft
Is named with loving tears.
And his deed shall be sung by the cradle,
And told the child on the knee,
So long as the dikes of Holland
Divide the land from the sea!

Phœbe Cary.

THE "COURSE OF LOVE" TOO "SMOOTH."

She came tripping from the church-door, her face flushed by emotions, awakened by the just uttered discourse, and eyes bright with loving expectation. He shivered on the