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SWINGING ON THE GATE.
a ed _ . .j. j I can see a picture painted. I can smell the drying hay Where the busy mowers rattle through the lazy summer's flay I can see the hungry plowboy wading through the billowed conu With expectant ear to windward, list'nlng to the dinner horn While unconscious of necessity, the future or of fate I make wondrous childish journeys as I swing upon the gate. Strange how back among the many recollections of t''e past Memory will grope and wander till It brings to us at last Some poor, foolish, fond remembrance, seeming hardly worth the while £et somehow made wondrous potent, like a tender passing smile Fleeting, gone, and soon forgotten—yet remembered by and by 'S ith a swelling in the bosom and a dimming df the eye. Now my temples fast are graying and my eyes have sober grown With the years of varied happiness and sorrow I have known Still I sometimes hoar the echo, when the evening lights are low, x Aml without ray darkened casement ghostly breezes eerie blow Of the friendly, rusty rattle of the latchet as when late In the hazy, lazy summer time we swung upon the gate. —Lowell Otus Iteese, in Leslie's Weekly. I ■A HE ASKED HER FIRST. I I ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ X ++W"H"H m H"!-W-H4W4+-H.4 h W.W-H.' •♦•m-h-h-m ♦ ♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦ ■ = HE must marry somebody," said her mother. "I don't see why she shouldn't refuse them both, if she wants to," said her father. The girl proceeded with her break fast calmly. She had endured the ar guments of her excellent parents on the subject of her matrimonial future for several weeks. Indeed, they were much more disturbed about It than she was herself. Being pretty, a trifle spoilt, thoroughly healthy, and essen tially feminine, she was in a delight ful state of indecision. Jack was everything that an Ideal lover should be—reasonably good-look ing. absolutely devoted to her, a demon at all games, and entirely lacking the most elementary notion of financial prudence. Monty, In his own peculiar way, was almost ns suitable. If he wasn't band come, he was the best dressed man in I'.elsize Park, which is saying a great Jeal; he played no game, except "bridge," which he had reduced to a fine art; and his financial condition was literally glittering. Jack appealed to the romantic slot oi her character, and had the support of hrr father: Monty appealed to her prudence, and had the support of her mother. "You will have to make up your mind directly," said her mother. "I am afraid I can't, mother," said the girl, helping herself to toast cheer fully. "It is so tiresome." "If I were a girl, I shouldn't hesitate five minutes," said her father, mean ing Jack. .''No more should I," said her moth er, meaning Monty. "I think I shall accept the one who asks first," said the girl, handing in her cup for a second edition of cof fee. "Don't be wicked," said her mother. "Not a bad notion," remarked her father, reflecting that be could wire to Jack, and give him a hint. "You don't mean what you say, ta Id her mother thoughtfully. Of course, she .hadn't meant It. but having said it. she began to think that she did. "Why not?" she said. *T luppose I must be a duffer, but I don t know my own mind a bit. Monty rep resents a carriage and furs, and and l really think I should look rather jol ly In furs. Not clipped rabbit skins, you know, but real furs." Her mother nodded approval. I on girl who wants to be well dressed," she said. Mr. Bush looked at his daughter "What does Jack repre are a doubtfully, «ent?" he asked. "I don't quite know." "I think he represents ev She pouted, she said. erything that's jolly except the car riage and furs. That's what Is so ag gravating. If I could only take a lit tle bit of each, it would be all right. I don't feel a scrap like a girl always I simply don't know does In books, what I want, and I shall accept the one who asks me first, because I like them both very much, and—and 1 dare say it will be all right." Her parents shook their heads at her recklessness, quite forgetful that they bad not been so urgent, the girl would have been able to make up lier mind without assistance. "Shocking." said Mr. Bush, and be made up his mind to send off a wire to his favorite as soon as he reached the city. "Jack must cut up here this morning, and get It over." he reflected. "It's only a kindness to her to save her from that snob." His wife popped on her bonnet had left tlje house, and soon as he , stepped round to the nearest telephone call office. "1 must give Monty a hint, "Margaret will thank for saving her from pov she said, some day orty " Happily Ignorant of the ste P R J^ parents had taken, Margaret set about her her little round of household duties. At 11 o'clock Mr. Wlnterflood came to tune the piano. He had wrestled with the drawing room piano, once a quar ter, for fifteen years, and the little old man, with his red pocket handker- I chief and black bag. was a particular favorite of Margaret's. Her mother, having learnt on the telephone that the glittering Monty would arrive soon af 'cr 31, wqs anxious to send the old fellow away, but Margaret wouldn't hear of it. "Suppose somebody calls," said the older lady, not daring to tell the truth. "Nobody is at ail likely to call," said the girl lightly. So Mr. Wlnterflood proceeded to his Irritating task, tapping note after note ] in a vain attempt to adjust an instru ment on which a certain healthy young lady delighted to play comic opera with the loud pedal down. Margaret sat by his side. "It gets worse and worse," said the old man, sadly. "Some of the notes In the bass are almost dumb." At that moment Mrs. Bush entered the room with an expansive smile of triumph on her face.- "Monty has call ed, and wants to see you particularly," she said. "Monty?" said her daughter with a frown. "What brings him here?" Then she remembered with a start her reckless words at the breakfast table, and her heart sank. "If you are a wise girl you will seize the chance." said her mother; then she added piously, "but I don't wish to persuade you. 1 think you said you intended to accept the one who asked ou first." The girl §lghed, and swept rather angrlly out of the room. It was really too bad to have one's words taken up llko that. She didn't want to accept anv one Just now. Whoever heard of a man proposing before lunch? She found the glittering youth in the library. His attire was as nearly per feet as the most expensive tailor could make it but it was easy to see he ts nervous. w „ . ,, „ ., "What a funny time to call." said the vouug lady rather rudely, but phe the jouug iuuy ... ■■ this time in the morning." "So I am as a rule," he said with a somewhat vapid smile. ly. a "But I had a telephone message "Of course, it's awfully nice of you to look in," she said hastily, didn't come to the concert last night?" "No," he stammered. I understood that you—you were going with some one else." The young lady frowned, rather a sore point, ised to take her and he had not turned that she had been obliged to go Monty had uncon "You "The fact is It was Jack had prom up, so with her parents. sclously scored one, and her mind re verted to the furs. "I wanted to ask you something," he began. "I'm just going shopping. she said "You can come with sudden energy, too if you like, and then you can ask With true fem we go along. me as mine procrastination she was trying to postpone the evil moment, for she had nn Insane feeling t 1 a 8 le won . ,o keep her word, and accept him if he succeeded in asking her the ques tJon ' - b e began I want to know, if desperately. "What about umbrellas? she asked "Is it likely to rain?" severely. "I don't think so," he said, question I was going-*" "Of course, yes, you were going to ask me a question," she said sweetly. "Now. isn't it funny? Whenever peo ple ask me questions, 1 always give the wrong answer." Her eyes were sparkling vlth ex citement. She had obstinately made up mind that if he succeeded in pro end forced her fft give an an "The her posing. 'yes,' but didn't quite know why she objected. So she was fencing for her life, and wondered why Jack didn't j happen to look in, or a chimney catch fire, or Indeed anything happen to save her from her own obstinate folly. Without giving him a chance to say j a word, she chattered on. And all the time she was chattering she was think !ng and trying to reconcile herself to the inevitable. But the more she look- , ed at him, the loss alluring became j the prospect of a carriage and furs. I She noticed that his forehead was both , , , Ä i i narrow and low. and though she had , not much brain herself, ns she reflect ed, she liked it in other people. Be- 1 sides that, his watch chain troubled 1 her. Why did he wear such a very heavy one ? i "But I can't stand here listening to I you," she said at last, when she found her breath was giving out. "You are such a chatterbox, Monty. I'll go and j pop on my hat, and we'll go out." '®nt I haven't asked you my ques tlvAf?" he gasped, and in sheer des peratlon he placed his back to the door. "Oh, dear, how slow you are," she said. "If it's about the dance-" "It isn't about the dance," he stam It's about you. I—I want She had also It should be 'yes/ decided that she didn't want to say mered. you to marry me." Nothing could have been more awk ward than his proposal, but it reduced her to a state of despair. The piano tuning was going on sol emnly. Tap—tap—tap, went the notes, followed by a grand flourish of chords. Then tap—tap—tap, again. "Why?" she asked, argumentative i( ln E- . ... "Perhaps it would be better to talk !t ov '' r an0 ier nl01 n ng ' gested. ly. "Why—what?" he gasped, blinking his little eyes In a bewildered way. "I really must call at the butcher's," she said, Jumping at the chance for delay given by his Indecision. "But—will you?" "You mean, marry you?" she asked demurely. "You don't give me time to think." "I'm awfully fond of you. and—and all that sort of thing," he said, eager ly. "We should be tremendously jol ly, and—all that sort of thing. The governor says I can draw up to $5.000 out of the business for a start, a year and—and things would be ripping." She looked at him desperately. What She began to feel for was she to do? some queer reason that to accept him almost impossible, but she had was given her foolish little word. Then a bright idea struck her. Per haps he would let her off. "Suppose I don't love you, she said. "That doesn't matter a bit," he said "If you will promise to cheerfully, marry me, I expect I shall make you love me in time, a beastly row that piano-tuner is mak I am—oh. lord, what "No, no, tell me now, he said. The piano tuning had suddenly ceased, and he was dashing at the subject brave ly. "I'm awfully fond of you, Mar garet. The fact is you you have fair ly bowled me over. I can t say exactly what I mean, because I am not much of a Hand at talking, and all that sort of thVng, but There was a gentle knock ai the door, and Monty muttered something under his breath which no British prin ter would Mt U P ln , . it was little Mr. Wlnterflood who " entered. "Good morning, miss." he said. ää, - 1 "I pleasure. "Oh, I found something of yours in the piano," said the little man. "Something of mine?" "Yes, it's a letter. No wonder the bass notes were nearly dumb, morning, miss." She took the envelope, and tore It addressed to her in Good open. It was Jack's handwriting. "Dear Maggie"—it ran—"I expect you'll be wild with me for not turning But I up to take you to the concert, have been summoned into the country Uncle Tom is seriously by telegram, HI. probably dying, and has asked to see me. I leave Euston to-night, and have just dashed In here hoping to catch you, but too late, back for two or three days at the Good-bye, dear little girl, or This is my birth I shan't be soonest. rather au revoir, day, and I made up my mind a long time ago that I would ask you to-day ^ , ofc wlll you be my wife? I j ^ave summoned up in t j will my courage^ ^ much ! loye you Good-bye. once more.—Jack. I am leaving this on the top of the piano so that you will find it in the morning Walt for me, Maggie. Don't promise yourself to any one else, until I have told you all I mean." For some inscrutable reason that let ter cleared the way. ly what her answer was. not only whom she did not want marry, but whom she must marry, un less slie wanted to be a miserable wo for the rest of her life. "Is it settled? after Monty had gone* She knew exact She knew. man asked her mothr "Quite," slie said. "X kept my -word, 1 and have accepted the one who asked N me first. Jack came last night. There's a his letter."—Montreal Family Herald. ~ i,- uro e j s " JJ'JJJJJJd Michael Breal, broached as as 1886 and which Is being n taken up . j consists of a wholesale exchange,! , of childre n from one fam in to another. H(jpe ls a Paris i an father in modest wlth a SO n. This man has an ; ambition that his child shall have a! thorough knowledge of German. The 1 thlng would be to place the. child In some German family for a whlle But tbe difficulty for the father - s tQ d i scover j U8 t the right sort of family _ one who would receive the c pii d> andi above all, one who had a child' to swap. The Parisian father would be S p en dlng no extra money in bous lng the German child and teach j ng French, while his own was eat jug at a German table. Meanwhile tM . Q na tlons were understanding each other better. It was a splendid scheme, jj> ordy it could be carried out. What was needed was a baby bro ker, as it were, an exchange, a clear ing house for children, an agency to keep tab of families willing to swap children and to engineer the swap. A named Toni Mathieu saw the PLAN TO EXCHANGE BABIES. I.y Which Different Clearing-House Nationalities Are Traded. One of the curious things run across the scheme of a French man chance, and Improved it during the va cation period last year, judices to overcome, letter writing he won the indispensa ble. not to say inevitable, sanction of college professors, of great authors, prominent lawyers and members of Parliament, placing an order for five children on trial. booming the enterprise. And it was heart-breaking work. He would win the approval of a lot of English or German or Scandinavian families, only to find in his own laud no readiness to And yet, in spite of every He had pre After a deal of He even succeeded in He devoted a whole year to trade. thing, he has succeeded in a measure. The scheme is working and Mr. Ma thieu has decided to found a society and push the idea for all it is worth. An elaborate system of correspond ence has been drawn up already. There is a precautionary exchange of photo graphs first and a severe cross-exam ination of all concerned. The closing details of the railroad journey, under suitably escorts in the case of girls, easily looked after by the are change. LIVING RENT FREE IN LONDON. Unscrupulous Persons Who Take Ad vantage of the Law's Delay. Many people in London make a busi ness of living rent free, incredible," said the head of a large firm of house agents the other day, "the number of persons who never pay rent from one year's end to another. "The method is, either by bogus ref erences or by impressing a sense of their good faith on a house agent, to obtain the lease of a house, most fre quently over £50 a year in rent, and when the landlord applies for his rent When he attempts to "It is almost I to defy him. eject them by legal process they stay until the very last day the law allows, and then clear out bag and baggage, and start the same operation elsewhere As they always furnish on the hire sys tom. distraint Is of no service to the landlord. "Their object of taking houses of a rental over £50 is to get above the jur isdiction of the County Court, which is more summary in its methods than the high court." To a smaller extent the delay In volved in ejectment by County Court action is also taken advantage of by exploiters of the law's delays, but these methods are not so Impudent as that of "jumping" a house, which is some times adopted. Not long ago a house owner, on look ing' through his morning paper, ob served that a man who had been charg ed with assault was reported to live at of his houses, which he had sup one posed to have been vacant for twelve months. On investigation he found that it was occupied by a tenant, who re fused to clear out. The usual legal form had to be gone through, and It was a month before the landlord got possession. Similar cases have happened where the "jumper" has the length of taking to lodgers, or of selling the house. Landlords sometimes prefer to buy a out rather than Invoke legal gone oven . tenant process, and a quicker procedure for ejection than the courts allow would be welcomed by landlords and house agents.—London Express. No More than Right. "I'd like to have your check for that little midnight supper I served at your house last month," said the caterer. "You'll have to wait until I get the doctor's bill for curing me of indlges "Thut comes There is one consolation for the girl wfiose parent* ian't afford to send her college: SljS would probably look like blaze« to i cap and gown any tlon," replied the victim, off your bill."—Philadelphia Press. to way. , N a ~ day. Nora. - ford it—Pick-Me-Up. M lke-Ar. you much hurted. Pat? Do ye want a doc tbor? Pat—A doc- ■ tbor fule! Aft her bein' runned J t lover by a trolley car? Phwat oi want , * 18 u lawycr ' ilrs - Casey Sure, th goat has ate »» av Maggie's piano music! Mr. Ca sey—Thank th' lard! Now, if bed only ate th' plauny, Oid'd pension him 5 ta The Maid—Shall I dust the bric-a The Mistress—Not to I don't think we can af brae, mum? fer loife!—Puck. "He declares his wife made him all "Quite likely. And I waste more than half an hour on the job."— that he is." should judge that she didn't Harper's Bazar. At The Hague; "What's that build ing, pa?" That, my son, is the Temple "What's it for?" "It's a of Peace." sort of club where nations wrangle be tween wars."—Life. "So Silas was charged with having Was th' judge severe He discharged seven wives, cu him?" "Awful! him with all of his wives waitin' fer him in th' corridor." He—Like all young men, I have my She—Yes, but they are so in to faults. significant that no self-respecting girl would feel justified in marrying you to reform you.—Illustrated Bits. The Doctor—You don't like travel Well, enjoy it well ing on the cars? enough, except for the dust and cin The Professor—Cinders? Eye! ders. There's the rub.—Chicago Tribune. Patent Medicine Proprietor — Did that chap we sent the gross of medi cine to send us a testimonial? Secre tary—Well, no; but we got cards of thanks from several of his heirs. ex Puck. Scripture verified; Hearing of a tax , ho had been waylaid and assessor v\ shot by robbers, Brother Dickey said: "How truly do de Bible say, 'De way —Atlanta of de tax assessor is hard!' Constitution. "Why, Johnny, how much you look like your father!" remarked a visitor to a 4-year-old. "Yes'm." answered Johnny, with an air of resignation; "that's what everybody says, but l can't help it." I make sure that "Doctor, how can the ice I use on the table is free from and the good fam made a two-dol Ad "Boll it,' germs ; ily physician at once lar entry in his day-book.— Detroit Free Press. Alicia—will you not "MissLovelac consent to be mistress of my estates? cannot tell you how much I love Oh, Reginald—or—perhaps you rough estimate—in you.' can give me a acres."—Life. Her Mother—Mr. Sloman has been long coming to se you for quite a What are his inten WelL I while, Maude, tlons? Shi Do you know? he Intends to keep on coming. think Philadelphia Press. "Young man," said Dustin Stax. I had to work for my money." "Well. the chilly reply, "enough throwing that up talking about it." father,' people in our set are to me without your was —Washington Star, Tom—So Miss Turner refused you, eh? pld sbe give any reason for do mg so? Jack—Yes, Indeed: two of mem. Tom—What were they? Jack —Myself and another fellow.—Su per ior (Wls.) Telegram, Lady—Meat Is very dear, butch ç an ' hardly afford to buy any. j^ tchep _ wby no t turn vegetarian, mum' Old Lady—No, indeed; I was and brougUt up a Baptist, and to change my religion tlme nfe * -Do you think marriages made in heaven? She-I Aon't know. Perhaps they are, but I'd be satisfied with one made to—or, that is, of course, I wasn't thinking what—oh, Charlie, do you really mean it?—Chl Record-Herald. A little fellow in saying his prayers one night entreated a blessing on his aunt who was dangerously ill, and concluded with these words; are Hi cago gravely . . , "And please. God. don't forget her ad dress. She lives at 9 Blank street, on the third floor to the right" great statistician Newltt—I see a that considerably more than one fe ra sa y s half the world's population is Peppery—Ridiculous! if that how would he account for the "one-half the world doesn't how the other half lives?" This is the last time inlne. . Ush. were so fact that know Mrs. Wearl I'll have a girl who can't speak Eng Husband—Why don't you send her off? Mrs. Wear! ing to for six weeks, but 1 can t make ! her understand what the word "dis charge" means. She thinks It means a da y off, and when I tell her she's ; discharged she goes out and has a good Urn*. I've been try-