Page images
PDF
EPUB
[blocks in formation]

MOTHER'S BUTTER.

HOPE.

DEAR Lulu has given us mother's bread

And mother's bread calls for mother's butter, Now over the two seems a halo to spread,

As over heart thoughts too deep to utter.

I once heard a fond mother say to her child,

For vacation returned from school : “What liked you the best of the dinner I sent,

Your home Christmas dinner my dear?"
It was all good, dear mother," she said with a

smile, “ And see my heart all in a flutter; I looked it all over, and cried awhile, Then commenced with your bread and

butter." You may smile at my humble, simple theme,

But of such is life's purest, holiest joy, For what is so bright as life's morning dream,

And what can the old home charm destroy.

WORSE THAN DEATH. THREE STORIES TOLD IN ONE.

PART THREE.
THE BISHOP'S CHILI).

For I'm thinking alas of the mother's hands,

That will work no more in mortal life, Thinking alas of the household bands,

Severed far and wide in this world of strife.

That will work no more the golden ball,

While the children around admire, And think of the feast awaiting them all.

Prepared by the dear hands that never tire.

Oh! the strongest will long for the home of

youth, In the warfare and struggles of earth ; Yearn for the innocent home joys and truth,

For they have learned their priceless worth, Yearn for the bread the butter and love,

That made it so sweet to the taste;
Yearn to return like the lone weary dove,

To rest in that hallowed place.
I have known these home offerings speed o'er

the sea,

The mountain, the desert, the plain, On the wings of true love untrammeled and

free, Found the broken chains joined once again. As the brase Christmas box in triumph appears,

And throbbing hearts gather around, Sweet visions of home arise through the tears,

As each link in the chain is found.

A NUMBER of years ago there lived in a certain ward of the city of

a worthy bishop and his wife. Their names

are immaterial, and they were both firm and faithful Latter-day Saints. They had bad a number of children, but all of them but one were girls. The only son was a boy of five years old, and you may be sure he was not only the idol of his parents hearts but was the pet and spoiled

sorrow.

a

in

over

darling of the whole household. again this prayer ascended into He was indeed a lovely child. the ears of the Lord of Sabaoth. His disposition was as sweet as At last, the child was dying. his mind was bright, and no one Everyone who was around the could wonder at the devotion of couch saw that dissolution was his parents when they saw the surely taking place, and for two intelligent face and sparkling eyes hours all but the father and mother of the merry boy,

of the child wept with resigned One day he was stricken down

The child was almost with

strange disease. The dead, his breath was but just disdoctors nowadays would call it cernible, and the grey ashen look meningitis; but there were no doc- of the dread monster was spread tors then to call it anything, for unmistakable hue

his our people were generally free countenance. from disease, and there was little The father and mother would not need for a doctor in any town.

give up.

But kneeling down on So without at all knowing what the floor beside the bed they comailed the child, except that he manded the child to live, by virtue suffered terribly with headaches, of the holy Priesthood which they and that he was dangerously sick, held. the parents saw him grow steadily

There was

a mighty power in worse and worse.

their loud-spoken prayer; everyTalk about faith, that father ex- one felt it who was present. But ercised all the faith and power of to some of those watchers it his Priesthood with a strength and seemed to bear an almost impious vigor which I have never strain of demand instead of resurpassed and seldom equalled. signed willingness to accept the He would hang over the bed, and will of Him who sent the child to administer again and again to the tabernacle on this earth. child, and for days he refused to Certainly there was a mighty leave the room, lest someone might power exerted, and the father was enter whose faith was less than filled with an almost unearthly his own, and in his absence the delight when he saw the life of child might be allowed to die, his darling brought back visibly through lack of faith. His whole to the dead body of the child, existence for many days was and the breath which had ceased constant prayer.

begin slowly to Autter across the He did not pray, as some do, cold and pale lips. "Father, if it be Thy will, spare Who could measure the joy of the life of my darling son.” Nay,

the parents to see the child slowly it was always "Give me the life but surely recover its health and of my child. By virtue of the strength! Of course it was very Priesthood which I hold, I com- slowly accomplished, mand him to live," Over and over

the hold the disease had

seen

a

SO

severe

was

was

a

you about.

was

taken upon the body of the boy. answered in

very

deed. The life But he did recover.

of the child had been spared, and I cannot remember just how he seemed after that to be utterly long it was before the mother be- exempt from disease and sickness. gan to notice something rather odd Yes, exempt from bodily sickness in the look of the boy.

It was

and disease. But he had what days after the time I have told a thousand times worse,

It seemed to her that disease of the mind. The shell of the peculiar glassy look made in their beautiful son

was left for the eyes by the brain inflamma- them to mourn over in ever intion he had suffered was being sup- creasing sorrow. But the mind, planted by a very disagreeable the lovely spirit of intelligence and painful expression.

She re

and beauty, the germ, the kernel frained from speaking of the mat

gone,

flown forever. The ter, even to her husband, for she months and years were but as hoped it was only temporary, and

added torture to their despairing that with returning health and souls.

The one

son, on whom strength the trouble, whatever its they had lavished the love and nature, would pass away. So she pride of their hearts, he was a said nothing about it; neither driveling idiot. Gibbering, malidid the father speak of his suspi- cious, and full of fiendish pranks cions to the mother, for he, too, and tricks, they saw him yet live hoped and felt that whatever ailed and grow in stature. To see him the child would depart with re

sick and know there was a chance turning vigor and health. Thus of his death and release, would weeks passed away,

and the

have been a boon from heaven! parents avoided each other's eyes

But alas, and alas! They dared whenever in the room with their not pray, for had they not prayed boy. Neither spoke to the other in their own wisdom and received of the horrible fear that was be- the answer to their prayer? Now, ginning to haunt their every wak- it was left to them to bear as best ing thought.

they might the consequences of As for the child, he grew rapidly their demand of the Eternal in his body, and had a remarkably

Father
healthy appetite, and soon began Oh, you can go

in
peace

and to kick out his legs in increasing love to the quiet graves of your strength and vitality. Flesh came innocent little ones and there upon his bones, and his body was weep the soft and silent tears that muscular and sturdy. Never was / purify and rest the heart with seen a finer physical specimen of heavenly rest, you cannot know growing boyhood. Alas, and what suffering fell to the lot of alas!

that proud father and that tender The body was all right, and the mother to visit day by day the prayer of the parents had been grave, the healthy living grave of

can

Oh no.

a

their dead son's bright spirit. but worldly pastimes.

He was The spirit dead and the body utterly crushed by his own impious living! Who measure the hand. And together the unhappy depth of their daily woe?

parents bore with what patience That mother felt as if she and fortitude they might the blow could never wear aught but deep- which had for them no surcease est black because of her own nor no mollifying thought. I am foolishness, and because of the sure, too, their constant tears and consequences of that foolishness! cries would have won the symNo wonder that she wore nothing pathy of some peculiar Saints who else but black for twelve years. I can only sympathize with those never marveled that she did. who show their grief upon the She could go to no meeting;

surface. As for these poor people nor could she shock the delicate their grief was not only on the minds of over-sensitive people by surface, but it swelled up to the appearing at picnics, neither surface right from the depths of directly after her bereavement nor their deeply wretched hearts. It for long years thereafter.

was small wonder that the surface She stayed very decently at home, was constantly rippled with the and with sharpened eyes, watched bubbles of moans and tears, for the constantly busy hands of her they had ever before them in silly son, lest he should set the horrible shape the form of the house on fire, or should kill or beloved one who should have long maim his sisters in some of his ago been given to the friendly tantrums. I

sure people earth to rest for a season. The would have thought her deport-spirit, they knew not where it ment very proper and deserving

If that was the spirit of of sympathy, for she spent all her their son which now inhabited his time when not watching him or body, they dared not think of working in the bitterest of lament- what their prayer might have ings and wept without restraint. accomplished. The father was equally proper

For nine long and dutiful to the wishes of parents watched, tended and Madam Grundy. Indeed the poor cared for the imbecile boy which man had no other choice. His had once

been their beautiful, grief was so real and so constant intelligent son. Then one sadly that he had dared to use his power happy day, they saw the malicious in evident opposition to the will of spirit that had tormented them so the God who gave him that power long in the helpless body of their as well as bestowing on him the boy, loose its hold, and soon child whose life he had demanded, death

mercifully to him that he never undertook to offend and closed the staring, vacant anybody by smiling or appearing eyes, and stilled the mischievous to enjoy himself in mere innocent hands. With throb of what

am

was.

years those

came

a

can

more

can never

as

was

SO

name

over

a

we cause

they dared not call joy, and yet

tell
you.

None of you are there was so much of relief in it

aware perhaps that she has felt all that it might almost be termed her life an inordinate longing for joy, they two silently closed the children. She has wept and prayed eyes of their dead child, and with about it for years; until she has little fuss and less outward show, at last given up all hope. I have they quietly carried him away to heard her say many times that she his long sleep among the silent would gladly have children and homes of the dead!

lose them all in their infancy, And then. Well, then I am rather than to live as she does afraid that if the mother had without the least of the exquisite followed out her own inclination joy of motherhood. Those who are she would have shocked

blessed with children than one public censor; for she know the sorrow of a childless felt if her burden

woman." happily lifted from her shoulders "You are right, my husband," that she could shout aloud for joy replied the lady, "and if I were to and gladness. As it was, she

try
to

thousand never failed in every place, and things that were worse than death, at every time, to implore every I should then have more to name. mother whom she saw in danger It is the sorrows that of losing a child, to let Father ourselves which give us the most have it if He wanted it, not to pain; the woes sent by our wise cling to it for one moment. And and kind Heavenly Father are to everyone so afflicted she would easy to bear, for accompanying solemnly say,

them, if we will ask for it, is a “Oh, my dear, be comforted, spirit of heavenly peace and resigbe comforted, weep, weep in

nation. Those troubles which we peaceful, quiet way, my dear, but, bring upon our own heads are oh, there are sorrows far worse the ones that should cause

us to than death, indeed there are!" go in mourning. And even some "How true are

that our Father sends

far echoed the lady of the house as harder to bear than death, kindly she arose to usher the whole com- restful, silent death. pany in to the elegant dinner pre

Homespun. pared. The conversation continued even at the table, and the lady called the attention of LIFE is made up, not of great the husband to the subject of sacrifices or duties, but of little their talk. He, too, re-echoed things in which smiles and kindthe words of his wife.

ness, and small obligations given “Do you see the white hairs of habitually, are what win and pre

wife? Do you know serve the heart and secure comwhat has caused them? Well, I fort.

a

your words!"

are

was

my beloved

« PreviousContinue »