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About Hesperian student / (Lincoln [Neb.]) 1872-1885 | View Entire Issue (Sept. 1, 1874)
THE HESPERIAN STUDENT.
Mauie: Iluvc you forgotten your cute
cliism so soon, my lady?
Mysei.k: Never miml the catechism,
Marie. It is very vague on that point. It
is only another example of the happy fac
ulty which the good brethren had of slid
ing over a dlfllculty with high-sounding
words. I believe with Lord Bolingbrokc,
that there is so much trouble in coming
into the world and so much more, ns well
ns meanness, in going out of it that 'tis
hardly worth the while to be in it at all.
Ihhaei.: He had no reason to complain,
lie had the cakes and ale, if anyone ever
did, and ought to have been happy.
Mysei.k: Yes, but the cakes became
stale and the ale bitter.
Isuaei.: Then he should have made
the best of it and not have quarrelled
with his fate, lie had them and enjoyed
them, no doubt, while they v re in their
freshness. If they lost their zest it was
his own fault. As he doubtless came to a
conclusion at last, moderation cannot be
excolled as a preservative. Hut he antici
pated the present age and lived as wc do
too fast. Life is short at best and the
attempt to crowd every phase of existence
within its limits is a sure suicide of the
Mysei.k; But think of droning out
one, two, three, or nine hundred years as
the patriarchs did; though I have some
where seen an argument to prove that a
correct calculation of time would bring
their lives within the limits of the allott
ed three score years and ten. Be that as
it may, I do not understand how they
could endure life at all. Ours, brief as it is,
seems infinitely preferable. Wliat a bur
den their thoughts must have been! We
11 ml ours insupportable even in our con
tinual "shifting change." In the very
brevity of our life, lies its only merit. It
lasts long enough for one to find out that
it is a grand mistake, and that a remedy
IniiAKi.: And there appears the truest
necessity for a future life. We shall be
given time to find the needed remedy.
But often we might here if we would
More thought is what we need.
Mysei.k: How can you say that? This
is preeminently the age of thought.
Isuaei.: Granted. But it is not the
right kind of thought. It is a mere sur.
face questioning and caviling over things
which it was never meant we should com
prebend. Myself: It may be rank heresy to say
it, but I do not believe there is anything
which the inquiring spirit of man will
not lead him to know and understand
eventually. Not in this generation by
any means. This questioning and cavil,
ing at which you sneer is a manifestation
of the undercurrent of thought among
the people, none the less strong that it is
partially hidden, gathering its force for
the decisive outburst. Yesterday, men
were content to receive the doctrines
taught them without inquiry as to their
authenticity. To.day, the simplest propo
sition is liable to denial from every side.
Even the pulpit dare not, as it once did,
attempt to set forth its teachings without
proof. And since, put it in what form
you may, every living question of the day
turns upon some point in religion, you
will readily see what the real issue has
Israel: It is the old combat of St.
George with the Dragon a third phase of
the struggle of Christianity for existence.
AgainBt rationalism now, as against form
alism at its birch, and mysticism at the
Reformation. And still it will triumph
as twice before.
Mysei.k: Yet you cannot deny, that
the tendency of the tide is against your
view, and towards free thought. There is
a gradual entrance of a path along which
there is no return to the orthodox creeds.
Once begin to doubt and there can never
be a reconciliation with the forsaken be
lief. Isuaei. : But why leave the safe harbor
at all, to try unknown waters? I venture
to say you have found nothing better of
fered you in your search after truth.
Faith is more desirable than uncertainty.
Mysei.k: Certainly. But what are you
going to do with that large class of peo
ple to whom faith is almost an impossi
bility? Do you suppose there is one of
them wh j would be so mad as to prefer
uncertainty to certainty, if the choice were
his own? Circumstances over which we
have no control guide us completely, and
shape our lives whether we will or will
not. This doom falls on all, but most se
verely on woman to whom so little is al
lowed. If life is so unattractive to a man,
to a woman it is worth nothing at all.
Mauie : For Heaven's sake, Euphro
syne, don't afllict us with a tirade on wo
men's rights. You never know when to
stop when yqu begin that.
Marie is no respecter of person?, and if
she does not like a thing she is perfectly
willing to express her opinion.
Isuaei.; You take a very gloomy view
of tilings, and that seems to me the founda
tion of your trouble. The dark side of
human nature lias formed the premises
from which you have drawn your conclu
sions. Why not look upon life in its gold
en tints? Why not rather seek the "heads"
than the " tails" of life? There is no bet
ter method of obtaining a good hich we
earnestly desire than by acting as if we
already possessed it. Do right because
it is right whether there is a witness of
our struggles or not. That is the perfec
tion of courage. It is not necessary that
others know it, but it is necessary that we
do it. There are so many obstacles to the
attainment of virtue and so many foes in
the way that we cannji afford to be our
I can not conceive how anyone can
complain of the " burden of life." What
more could one ask than to be upon this
" shimmering earth," where
"Sweet, so sweet the roses in their blowing,
So sweet the dnllodlls, fulr to sue;
So blithe and gay the humming-bird a-going
From llower to tlower, a-huntlng with the bee.'
But the ideal life that lies before us
you remember what Kingsley says is his
" lesson for every day" to make life " one
grand, sweet song." And every man's
life is a song, harsh or soft as he wills it.
But lew grand or sweet, I grant you, yet
there are songs and songs. Dante's was
written in minor chords; Milton's was a
Hymn of Triumph; Luther's sounds like
a Call to Battle; and Keats' ah, do you
not hear the "sweet bells jangled out of
Numberless are the discords, yet per
haps the song of many a life that you and
I call discordant is divinest melody to
that Eur to which even silence is sweet
sound. There is no soul but sometime
somewhere beathes Eoliau strains. Ev
ery sacrifice of self, every struggle for
right, every victoay of love is a note of
harmony in what else may be a ribald
stave. And there are many of these liar
monies. The world is full of generous
deeds and noble sacrifices. The univer.
sa' brotherhood that binds us together
teaches to eacli a lesson that bids fair to
show, "That to be saved is only this
salvation from our selfishness."
Mysei.k: Now, Israel, if you have
"rhapsodicd" enough come down to a
plain statement of facts. Look at each
man individually. Where do you see any
of this self-sacrifice, this self-denial, this
universal brotherhood? What do you
find but a cool disregard for everything
except self-interest? One man values an
other only as he is able to contribute to
the advantage of the first. When I look
uround and see the vanity, selfishness and
hypocrisy that sways every man I am per
fectly sick at heart, and it is no solace to
know, that I myself am no better titan
It.it a el: My friend, I think you err
here. It is not by particulars you must
judge. It is a lesson which the world is
slowly learning, that only by feneralitien
must a judgement be rendered, that only
what the centuries teaeli is truth, not the
deeds of years. Look upon lhcwhnic,not
the parts. "Judge no man's life till its
close is seen."
Mysei.k: And the chief joy of all is
"toon or Into fhall t lili befall
The gods send tlunth upon us nil."
F. E. II.
What Became of Iliia.
IIY C. V. it.
DIt. MANTElt IN TltOUlM.E.
" What there is about Manter that some
folks find it worth while to prate about,
and eulogize, from morning to night, why
bless my heart I can't see it."
" Don't doubt your word a bit, Doc', but
someways or 'nother he's gettin up in his
practisin. Doc' Manter is so. 'Taint so
powerful hard to see that, is'l? But I kin
just toll you, Doc' Wardlaw, 'taint no
manner of use for you to be after tryin to
run 'im in the ground now. For all on
'em 'round here o' the poor trash, home
steadors and such like, think lie's some,
you'd better guess, ef he don't 'scribe
tangle-foot. All o' the women brag on
"Why, it's as plain as plain can be, Kel
ly. You see, he artfully commences by
propitiating 'the power behind the throne,'
" I'll be hung, Doc', ef I know what
you're drivin at."
"Well well I mean that that he goes
around and soft-soups the womeir folks
witli his temp'rance prescriptions first,
while he means, you know, to slide around
the men with his oily tongue afterwards
work up a big practice run for a town
" Wal, I don't go much on any man tliet
hesn't got the back-bono to take his bit
ters with the next un. Talk o' the
an' he'll come."
If Kelly had reference to Drexel Man
ter, M. D , it certainly was a very credita
ble statement. For just as he spoke, the
subject of these highly complimentary
remarks came into full view and rode di
rcctly to the hotel.
Dr. Manter had settled in Tokoma, a
little Kansun town noted for the lawless
uess and recklessness of its inhabitants,
and was favored with a very fair practice
as some one was sure to be shot, wouuded
or to get a broken nose every day. The
poor settlers, that had to struggle for their
very living, he attended free, prohibit
ing the use of whiskey in almost every
The best view of the Tokoma plains
could be obtained from the brow of
prairie mound or butte, where the Dubinin
trail crosses the Lamar cattle route. It
was to this point that Dr. Manter lmtl
found his way in tile course of his after
noon ride, five yearn after his arrival at
Tokoma. A sharp turn in the trail brought
him to the summit of the mound, at the
same time presenting to his gaze one of
those grand and almost boundless pano.
ramus that are peculiar to our prairie
Before him, and far away to the south,
flowed the broad Neosho, winding slow
ly across the gently heaving bosom of the
Chcquns prairie, down through the Osage
hunting grounds to the dense forests of
the Arkansas. Far to the westward the
Dalumu trail threaded its tortuous way,
dotted here and there with emigrant
wagons in long trains, moving slowly but
steadily onward in their toilsome track,
while in every direction, the billowy
prairie rose and lell in endless untlulu
tions, enlivened by the lights and shades
of the tall, luxuriant grass, bowing anil
waving in the wind, chasing eacli other
over the mounds, through the hollows,
now here, now there, as fitful as the wind.
Now and then as he gazed upon the beau
tiful scene, the breeze would waft to him
the gentle music of the river, only to die
away again, softly sighing as it went.
Nestled cosily by the river bank, par
tially hidden from view by the dense foil
age of the timber belt, was the town of
Tokoma. Its new buildings, gleaming
in the light of the setting sun, seemed
very fair and cheerful for a rough, we
tern settlement. So thought Dr. Manter
as he turned his horse's head homeward,
the lengthening shadows having warned
him of the approach of night.
When he was but a little distance Iroin
the town he was overtaken by a party of
raiu'heros and Texan cattle drivers. They
had just enough "tangle-foot aboard" to
incline them to indulge in various little
freaks of pleasantry. Observing this, Dr.
Manter essayed to let them pass. But
they seemed inclined to pick a quarrel
with the " milk-sop doctor," and reined
up with him.
" You're out cavortin roun' 'bout ycr
wimming payshuntsem'c yc.Doc' ? Law
crMorg'n's pooty widder needs lots o'
medicine stuff, 'ml thet free. You'd bet
ter bet the spunky little ooman does, hey.
Specially when thar's a saft 'sishau
round, thet wars black board-ciuth cuts,
keeps his pants out o' his boots, 'ml kin
make himself promiskoous most enyway,"
said Diego, the corral owner, bantering-
As this failed lo elicit a reply, he tried
" You're rayther fond o' the wimming
as drinks cold water. Kelly sez so. Aint
you now rally?"
Again tlicre was no answer.
"Walrally, Doc, you're kinder glum,
swashylike. Will ycr hev a drop o' bit
ters at Kelly's 'foro your hash? Ward
law alius used ter."
" No, I thank you, sir."
"Ycr won't drink, eh?"
" I prefer not to do so. It's again "
" Bo yer heeled ?"
" I don't carry wea "
" Pass 'im an iron, boys. By , he's
got ter play his card or take a pill this
" The c'ral's bust ! They're goin o a
miihiiiii .miii mii
H2 &niVM',VUt .J.flWRV.
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