Cyse Higgins ain't.--Land, Rose, don't button that dickey

clean through my epperdummis! I have to sport starched collars

in this life on account o' you and your gran'mother bein' so

chock full o' style; but I hope to the Lord I shan't have to wear

'em in another world!"

"You won't," his wife responded with the snap of a dish towel, "or if you do,

they'll wilt with the heat."

Rose smiled, but the soft hand with which she tied the neck-cloth

about the old man's withered neck pacified his spirit, and he

smiled knowingly back at her as she took her seat at the

breakfast table spread near the open kitchen door. She was a

dazzling Rose, and, it is to be feared, a wasted one, for there

was no one present to observe her clean pink calico and the still

more subtle note struck in the green ribbon which was tied round

her throat,--the ribbon that formed a sort of calyx, out of

which sprang the flower of her face, as fresh and radiant as if

it had bloomed that morning.

"Give me my coffee turrible quick," said Mr. Wiley; "I must be

down the bridge 'fore they start dog-warpin' the side jam."

"I notice you're always due at the bridge on churnin' days,"

remarked his spouse, testily.

"'Taint me as app'ints drivin' dates at Edgewood," replied the

old man. "The boys'll hev a turrible job this year. The logs air

ricked up jest like Rose's jackstraws; I never see'em so turrible

ricked up in all my exper'ence; an' Lije Dennett don' know no

more 'bout pickin' a jam than Cooper's cow. Turrible sot in his

ways, too; can't take a mite of advice. I was tellin' him how to

go to work on that bung that's formed between the gre't gray rock

an' the shore,--the awfullest place to bung that there is

between this an' Biddeford,--and says he: 'Look here, I've

be'n boss on this river for twelve year, an' I'll be doggoned if

I'm goin' to be taught my business by any man!' 'This ain't no

river,' says I, 'as you'd know,' says I, 'if you'd ever lived on

the Kennebec.' 'Pity you hedn't stayed on it,' says he. 'I wish

to the land I hed,'says I. An' then I come away, for my

tongue's so turrible spry an' sarcustic that I knew if I stopped

any longer I should stir up strife. There's some folks that'll

set on addled aigs year in an' year out, as if there wan't good

fresh ones bein' laid every day; an' Lije Dennett's one of 'em,

when it comes to river drivin'."

"There's lots o' folks as have made a good livin' by mindin'

their own business," observed the still sententious Mrs. Wiley,

as she speared a soda-biscuit with her fork.

"Mindin' your own business is a turrible selfish trade," responded

her husband loftily. "If your neighbor is more ignorant than what

you are,--partic'larly if he's as ignorant as Cooper's cow,--you'd

ought, as a Kennebec man an' a Christian, to set him on the right

track, though it's always a turrible risky thing to do."

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