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A certain employer of large numbers of men makes it a principle to praise none of them, not because they are undeserving, and not because he dislikes to commend, but because experience has taught him that usually the praise goes to the head of the recipient, both impairing his work and making it harder for others to associate with him. A good test of a man is his way of taking commendation. He may, even while grateful, be stirred to humility that he has not done better still, and may resolve to accomplish more. Or imitating the frog who wished to look like an ox, he may swell and swell until-figuratively speaking-he bursts.

OMEBODY said he'd done it well,

And presto! his head began to swell;
Bigger and bigger the poor thing grew-
A wonder it didn't split in two.
In size a balloon could scarcely match it;
He needed a fishing-pole to scratch it;
But six and a half was the size of his hat,
And it rattled around on his head at that!

"Good work,” somebody chanced to say,
And his chest swelled big as a load of hay.
About himself, like a rooster, he crowed;
Of his wonderful work he bragged and blowed
He marched around with a peacock strut;
Gigantic to him was the figure he cut;-
But he wore a very small-sized suit,
And loosely it hung on him, to boot!

HE was the chap who made things hum!
HE was the drumstick and the drum!
HE was the shirt bosom and the starch!
HE was the keystone in the arch!
HE was the axis of the earth!
Nothing existed before his birth!
But when he was off from work a day,
Nobody knew that he was away!

This is a fact that is sad to tell :
It's the empty head that is bound to swell;
It's the light-weight fellow who soars to the skies,
And bursts like a bubble before your eyes.
A big man is humbled by honest praise,
And tries to think of all the ways
To improve his work and do it well;—
But a little man starts of himself to yell!

Joseph Morris.


To those who are wearied, fretted, and worried there is no physician like nature. When our nerves are frazzled and our sleep is unrefreshing, we can find no better antidote to the clamorous grind and frenzy of the city than the stillness and solitude of hills, streams, and tranquil stars. That man lays up for himself resources of strength who now and then exchanges the ledger for green leaves, the factory for wild flowers, business for brook-croon and bird-song.

THE little cares that fretted me,

I lost them yesterday
Among the fields above the sea,

Among the winds at play;
Among the lowing of the herds,

The rustling of the trees,
Among the singing of the birds,

The humming of the bees.

The foolish fears of what may happen,

I cast them all away
Among the clover-scented grass,

Among the new-mown hay;
Among the husking of the corn

Where drowsy poppies nod,
Where ill thoughts die and good are born,
Out in the fields with God.

Elizabeth Barrett Browning.


Any one who has ridden across the continent on a train must marvel at the faith and imagination of the engineers who constructed the road—the topographical advantages seized, the grades made easy of ascent, the curves and straight stretches planned, the tunnels so carefully calculated that workmen beginning on opposite sides of a mountain met in the middle and all this visualized and thought out before the actual work was begun. Faith has such foresight, such courage, whether it toils actively or can merely bide its time,

HE tree-top, high above the barren field,

Rising beyond the night's gray folds of mist, Rests stirless where the upper air is sealed

To perfect silence, by the faint moon kissed. But the low branches, drooping to the ground,

Sway to and fro, as sways funereal plume, While from their restless depths low whispers sound: "We fear, we fear the darkness and the gloom; Dim forms beneath us pass and reappear, And mournful tongues are menacing us here.”

Then from the topmost bough falls calm reply:

"Hush, hush, I see the coming of the morn; Swiftly the silent night is passing by,

And in her bosom rosy Dawn is borne.
'Tis but your own dim shadows that ye see,
'Tis but your own low moans that trouble ye.”

So Life stands, with a twilight world around;

Faith turned serenely to the steadfast sky, Still answering the heart that sweeps the ground

Sobbing in fear, and tossing restlessly“Hush, hush! The Dawn breaks o'er the Eastern sea, 'Tis but thine own dim shadow troubling thee."

Edward Rowland Sill.

From “Poems,"
Houghton Mifflin Co.


We all like the good sport—the man who plays fair and courteously and with every ounce of his energy, even when the game is going against him.

LIFE is a game with a glorious prize,

it .
It is give and take, build and break,

And often it ends in a fight;
But he surely wins who honestly tries

(Regardless of wealth or fame),
He can never despair who plays it fair-

How are you playing the game?

Do you wilt and whine, if you fail to win
In the manner you


due ?
Do you sneer at the man in case that he can

And does, do better than you ?
Do you take your rebuffs with a knowing grin?

Do you laugh tho' you pull up lame?
Does your faith hold true when the whole world's blue?

How are you playing the game?

Get into the thick of it-wade in, boys!

Whatever your cherished goal;
Brace up your will till your pulses thrill,

And you dare-to your very soul !
Do something more than make a noise;

Let your purpose leap into flame
As you plunge with a cry, “I shall do or die,"
Then you will be playing the game.



A real man does not want all his barriers leveled. He of course welcomes easy tasks, but he welcomes hard ones also. The difficult or unpleasant thing, puts him on his mettle, throws him on his own resources. It gives him something of

“The stern joy which warriors feel
In foemen worthy of their steel.”

Moreover as a foil or contrast it enables him to value more truly the good things he constantly enjoys, perhaps without perceiving them.


SORTER like a gloomy day,

Th' kind that jest won't smile;
It makes a feller hump hisself

T' make life seem wuth while.
When sun's a-shinin' an' th’sky

Is washed out bright an' gay,
It ain't no job to whistle-but
It is

When skies air gray!

So gloomy days air good fer us,

They make us look about
To find our blessin's—make us count

The friends who never doubt,
Most any one kin smile and joke

And hold blue-devils back
When it is bright, but we must work

When skies air black!

That's why I sorter like dark days,

That put it up to me
To keep th' gloom from soakin' in

My whole anatomy !
An' if they never come along

My soul would surely rust

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