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sickening smells, the more I marvel at child's natural and instinctive love for what the school means to such a neigh- dumb animals is encouraged in their lesborhood, and what it will eventually sons in biology. They can repeat bloodmean to the nation. The strength of the curdling descriptions of scenes that they chain is the strength of its weakest link, have witnessed in which some miserable and the strength of the nation will be horse, bird, cat, or dog has been the measured by the success of the school in victim. It is rather a harrowing lesson these districts; and this success is based until the culmination comes in their exupon the teachers' loyalty, inspiration, pressions of passionate sympathy and and sense of grave responsibility. They condemnation! must, besides giving the prescribed em What is the matter with the public phasis to the three r's, shape the patri- schools? The only answer is that there otic and civic ideals, see that health is is too much public, too little of the safeguarded and morals guided.

school. From one end of the land to the I think over what I have seen in one other we need more and more schools. day within that school. Its surroundings More schools, so that the cherished hopes are limited, narrow, or evil, but the and ideals and hard work of the whole school has stretched its arms out and teaching force from the superintendent over it, and brought from the outside to the assistant teacher may serve the world a new environment. There are nation as they so sincerely aspire toinspiring class-room talks on current and plan for. events, into which a wildly interested A street fight will bring back the sharp class bring newspaper clippings, discuss- contrast again. I remember the day ing under the teacher's guidance the his that a teacher came into the teachers' tory of nations in the making, encour room with her arm bleeding badly from aged to share as Americans this coun an ugly scratch. Jennie had been having try's problems. Once a week the worlds of a furious argument with the girl sitting industry and of commerce and their proc- next her in the auditorium, and in baffled esses are shown to them through care rage decided to run home. It was then fully prepared and selected "movies," that the teacher had blocked her path. widening their narrow scope of factory Jennie had flown at her like a young life, and making them respect the power fury—she was fourteen--and had dug and wonder of production and construc her nails into the arm which obstructed tion. Or again, the greatest of musicians her headlong flight. . . . Then I recall play or sing to an enthralled audience of with a shiver that ugly-looking weapon young music lovers as the phonograph is which I wrung from a boy who was tryplayed. Lantern slides of famous paint- ing to use it on a young teacher. It was ings, and talks on the world's foremost shaped like a "black jack" and was artists, bring to them a world of beauty. made of solid mahogany. He had been And then there are library periods when shrieking and kicking like a little fiend, these children, whose parents are power and was threatening her with death one less through ignorance to guide them, minute, and his whole gang the next. are taught to choose their reading with Most of his life had been spent in care and thought.

“homes” and reform schools. But The tortured existence of an alley cat many parents of these children recognize or dog is alleviated by the school, and appreciate what the schools are dosince most of the poor youngsters have ing for them and are grateful. never dreamed of treating animals in a Once after the war was over we had humane way. They have never heard occasion to visit most of the homes in of it in their homes. This cruelty of the neighborhood. One rather prospertheirs is not innate, but, like so many of ous Italian asked us about his Antoitheir faults, is due to ignorance. The nette. Was she good?

VOL. CXLIV.-No. 862.-63

“No-well," I hesitated, "is her how they work for her-a dog's life. She mother here?"

ought to be ashamed. Italy even is "Don't bodder with her," he an ashamed of her. Look what Italy swered, loftily. “Me, me you should done—won the war. Look at Antointalk to. Womans they don't got the ette! She's ebbery time fresh. And intelligence a man has. See? Except”– Italy made the Kaiser no better than and he bowed low—“except teachers.” menothing but a saloon keeper.” We smiled and nodded.

His pride in Italy, his shame at the "I see-Antoinette, she's fresh! My ingratitude of Antoinette toward AmerGod! her mother ought to eat her heart ica and its teachers, were passionately out like she would a piece of bread. sincere. My God! In Italy we pay for ebberythin' Twisted as some of his points were, -books, paper, pens, ebberythin'. In they had in them something to warm the America — ebberythin' free — and right hearts of teachers down in those byways away she gets fresh! And the teachers and alleys of the city's slums.

THE MAGIC FLOWER

BY RICHARD LE GALLIENNE

Y

OU bear a flower in your hand,

You softly take it through the air,
Lest it should be too roughly fanned,

And break and fall, for all your care:
Love is like that, the lightest breath

Shakes all its blossoms on the land,
And its mysterious cousin, Death,

Waits but to snatch it from your hand.
O some day, should your hand forget,

Your guardian eyes stray otherwhere,
Your cheeks shall all in vain be wet,

Vain all your penance and your prayer:

God gave you once this creature fair,
You two mysteriously met;

By Time's strange stream
There stood this Dream,
This lovely immortality

Given your mortal eyes to see,
That might have been your darling yet;
But, in the place
Of her strange face,

Sorrow will stand for evermore,
And Sorrow's hand be on your brow,

And vainly shall you watch the door
For her—so lightly with you now,

And all the world be as before.
Ah! spring shall sing and summer bloom,
And flowers fill life's empty room;
And all the singers sing in vain,
But bring you not your flower again.
0 have a care for this is all:
Let not your magic blossom fall.

GIOVANNI

BY LAURA SPENCER PORTOR

OFTE

FTEN I black my own boots, and When, having received his welcoming

never enjoy doing it. But smile, I mount one of his two chairs, Giovanni, now, likes to black boots! with their iron footrests, business begins. You could not mistake him. He has a With the dignity of a priest about to real fondness for his profession.

perform his office, he brings out his When he stands outside his little booth brushes, rags, bottles, and grease boxes. on a sunny day, it is not at the faces of He is a fat little Italian, very goodthe passers-by that he looks, but at their natured, and extremely intent on doing lagging or hurrying boots. He is so his polishing in the right manner-a interested in watching and reading and bootblack in a hundred. When he gives, interpreting these that sometimes, when finally, the last touch, your boots shine I have passed quite close to him, he has so that they are fit like “them golden not seen me, to accord me his smile. slippers” for walking “the golden He has seen only

streets, hallelujah!” my boots, which,

It was inevitable alas! on these occa

that I should find sions have not been

out something greatly in need of

about him. Morepolishing.

over, he was ready As to the weather,

enough to tell me. it has for Giovanni

Oh, yes, he had a meaning so woven

been in America for in with his advan

a long while, twelve, tages or disa d

fifteen years! vantages that it

He has an

OCbecomes easy

casional partner to understand

and crony, an inthe genesis of my

considerable person thology. Were Gio

against whose vanni pursuing his

rather grayish neuprofession in the

tral character that mythopoic age,

of Giovanni shines Mud would be Gio

vividly, as a sea vanni's beneficent

gull, swooping, god. As it is he

shines vividly white crosses himself on

in the sun against Sundays, with prayer to the Ma

If a blue sky donna, and mud is

shone back of Gioto him only mud,

vanni-I mean to howbeit a desirable,

say, if his partner, not to say down

for instance, were right fortunate

young and glib, thing.

A SUNNY DAY

with the terrible

[graphic]

а

gray clouds.

OUTSIDE HIS LITTLE BOOTH ON

lightning-like efficiency of the young most lovable, in contrast to the great, Giovanni's vividness would, I believe, flat, broad, spatulate ones of the hipalter wholly and be subdued, until, popotamuslike gentleman in the next like the gull flying against a clear sky, chair. his shining plumage would turn dull The heavy customer, meanwhile, is in and his pleasantness fade to somber no mood to be patient. Moreover, the silence.

crony really is slow and the heavy genA moment after I enter the booth tleman has, obviously, an appointment. there comes in a large overcoated man “Get busy, will you?” he says, in a checked suit, who takes his place sharply. heavily in the other chair. Giovanni He has taken out his watch and keeps summons the crony with a terrible it in his hand, opening it and snapping sweeping gesture.

it to, a nervous, impatient performance The crony shuffles in from the pave- calculated to destroy artistry. ment where he, too, has been watching The crony takes an almost rapid people's boots as they pass by. Giovanni glance at him and eliminates all extra points at the customer's very large shoes flourishes. Silence! Laboramus! The with a terrible commanding finger. The bent back of the crony accedes perfectly crony understands, and begins with to the heavy man's request. Yes. Theocritan leisure to reach for brushes Laboramus! and other preliminaries.

Meantime, Giovanni is pursuing his Meanwhile Giovanni bends, I should task very leisurely. He puts one grease say almost tenderly, over my shoes, box back on the shelf and takes down which really do look rather small, al- another with a really Jovian gesture.

He takes down from a hook a pair of shoe laces that have nothing to do with the case, looks at them, and hangs them up again. I think this extreme leisureliness is Giovanni's way of making me very welcome.

The heavy man gets down, soon, weightily. The crony seems willing to do a great deal more for him, but he will have none of it. He rams a heavy hand in his trousers pocket, brings out some coins, throws one on the base on which the chair stands. The crony stoops over it and picks it up deftly without comment, much as a dog that is hungry does not pause to register his disapproval of your manner of throwing his

bone, but seizes it. The coin Keret

safe in his pocket, the crony makes one inefficient dab at the gentleman's trouser legs with a suddenly remem

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HE RAMS A HAND IN HIS POCKET

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an

even

bered whisk broom. The hippopotamus escapes.

Then ensues a really terrible conversation between the crony and Giovanni. Before this I have always longed to know Italian. Now I am relieved that I do not. The polishing of my boots is abandoned, save for occasional swooping, lightning-like dab at them by Giovanni's right arm and hand, which seem to work independent of his intellect, that being wholly and hotly engaged with the crony.

They talk in a really alarming manner.

You had supposed them to be old friends! You think that the traffic policeman on the corner might be called in. Before taking this step you decide to try the dissuasiveness of your own voice. Giovanni, you think, likes you. You will beg these men to desist and to stop short of what “You said you have been in this it seems may develop any minute now country fifteen years?" into murder.

Giovanni stops all operations to nod Well, we are a prejudiced people! a deep nod such as they give on the God forgive us! Personally, I see little stage. hope of nations understanding one an “Fifteen-a-year! Tha's long-a time!" other. What we take to be the terrible “And you like America?” breaking of friendship may be its "Oh!" Impossible to give a hint of cementing. The crony goes out gesticu- the tone. Loyalty, fidelity, gratitude lating (which is much for him). Then everything rolled into one! Giovanni puts down his brush, opens his The polishing of my shoes goes forgrease box, swings the tips of his fingers ward. I look at them, waiting, and around it with a gesture beginning at finally further information that I've the elbow, pauses, and says, not only been hoping for comes. with mellow satisfaction, but with posi He straightens up, almost as though tive melting affection, "Hee is a verra he were about to salute a flag, but ingood man!"

stead squares his elbows with his sides, Well, so be it! They have given you looks me kindly, proudly-I had almost a verra bad few minutes. Yet there is a said patronizingly–in the eyes, like a law of compensation, too, for Giovanni man who believes himself to have bethas just given you, to offset your fright, ter knowledge than you are likely to an immense sense of relief.

possess.

[graphic]

THEY TALK IN A REALLY ALARMING MANNER

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