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About The Hesperian / (Lincoln, Neb.) 1885-1899 | View Entire Issue (Nov. 1, 1895)
Thoro wore throo of thorn; little tots, the
oldest not nioro than oight yoars old. They
sat thoro on tho baro black oarth unconcions
of tho half-dozon spectators. Tho shadows
wore falling far to tho oast, and thoy had
boon thoro when you could scarcely see any
shadows at at. It was Sunday a cold,
chilly, blustry day tho kind of a day when
ono wants an ovorcoat. And thoy wore very
thinly and poorly clad. Yet thoy did not
seem to mind tho cold. Tho youngest was
crying bittorly. crying, as though hor little
heart would broak, and the eldest was hold
ing hor in hor arms, whispering soothing
words in hor oar. And tho othor littlo girl
was sticking tiny sprigs of ovorgreon into
tho loose earth sprigs which she had pur
loined from a neighboring tree.
"It is thoir mother's grave," said a lady
who was watching. "She died a couple of
months ago. And every Sunday they wan
der out here, all alone, and play for a few
hours. Poor mother ! I wonder if she
knows." 1 wonder.
It was a laughing morry crowd just coming
from tho danco. In the mazos of polka and
schottischo and waltz thoy had whirled the
evening hours away, happy, joyous hours.
And, as they omorgod from tho dance hall,
the golden broad-faced moon shono full upon
thorn; tho myriads of stars twinkled bright
and merry. All nature was quiet and at
rest. A rest so calm, so happy, so full of
inexpressible soronity and peace. Tho
heavens and the earth wore pure gold; thoro
was no place for dross or for alloy. This
was a pretty good old .vorid, 'after all; a
jolly, happy, contented world tho homo of
joy and laughter, and hope and love. Truly,
a raro old world; and tho merry, laughing
crowd, with its youthful joys and hopes and
aspirations went gaily on.
'Help I Help! Help! Oh my God!
Help mo, help mo, help mo ! Mercy, mercy,
oh my God ! "
It was a woman's voico. From away up
in tho third story of tho mad houso it rung
out clear and strong; a voice of agony and
woo, of torment, hopelessness and despair.
" Holp mo! Oh, my God ! Help! Help!!
Thoy grasped mo by tho arm and said,
"Oomo up to daily prayer meeting, come
And thoir invitation was earnest and
sincoro. To them prayer moans something;
thoy know a God who sits up somewhere on
a throne in boundless space a God who
answers prayer sometimes. To mo prayer
moans nothing and I know no God. So I
did not go. To them I am an object of
pity genuine pity. For they believe thoir
God will damn mo, because I do not know
him. It all seems so strange; wo are con
stituted very much alike, thoy and I. Wo
have tho samo senses, live in like environ
ments, think tho samo, in many instances,
see politics, literature, science and art in tho
samo light. Yet hero wo diverge, widely,
irroconcibiably. Wo are both in earnest,
both sincere Yet thoy believe that true
which I know to be an absurdity. T7ici
would say thoy know that to bo true which 1
believe to be an absurdity.
They know all that I do; know of Siberia
with its awful horrors and unjust sufferings;
know of vice and crime rampant and trium
phant; know of virtue squalid and in rags;
thoy see wrong conquer good, falsehood
subdue truth. And seeing and knowing all
thoy can say, "Altogether just and right
nous are thy ways, Lord God Almighty."
And 1, knowing and seeing tho samo
things, can only say, with tho intonsost con
viction, "Thoro is no God who has ordained
and permits all these things, and if thoro
wore 1 should hate him."
Why are wo, who are so very similar, so
Aory different ? H. E. Nuwbranoii.
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