The Pamphlet Collection of Sir Robert Stout: Volume 12
The Bunch of Flowers
The Bunch of Flowers.
"Go along!" was the surly expression of a little girl, who stood at her grandfather's door, one summer's morning,—"go along!" Now do you think these were pretty words to be used by either boy or girl? Certainly, I do not? but just let me tell you to whom, and upon what occasion they were used, and then you can judge for yourselves. Little Mary's home was in London, but she had been ill with fever, and became so thin and pale, that her kind grandfather proposed her paying him a visit, and you may think with what delight the invitation was accepted by Mary, who had seldom seen the country and its beauties. She and her cousin were out almost constantly. They walked by the river-side, sat under the trees, and turned the newly-mown hay with tiny hay-forks. All this was delightful to the little Londoner; and surely, in the midst of so many pleasures, she should have bid goodbye to cross and angry words or tempers. In the village lived a gentle, kind-hearted child, about the same age as Mary. Her road to school lay by Mary's grandfather's, and she had several times seen her, and longed to speak to her. Besides, she had heard of a dear little brother and sister, whom Mary had lost a few weeks before, in the same attack of fever; which she had recovered from, and Annie felt much pity for her. On the morning of which we are speaking, Mary was standing at the door, when Annie came up as usual on her way to school, and seeing her there, stopped a moment before passsing on, and looked upon her with love and pity. It was then that Mary said rudely, "go along!" Little Annie made no reply, but she was grieved, and hurt at being spoken to in such a manner; and when she returned home, she told her mother how sorry she was Mary had been so rude. Her mother was sorry, too, but told her little daughter she was pleased she said nothing unkind in return: "perhaps Mary knew no better," she said, but you can gather a bunch of flowers from the garden some day, and take them to her."This thought pleased Annie; and soon after she got the flowers, and taking them to Mary, asked if she would like to have them? Mary was delighted, and said, "thank you, dear;" and some days after, meeting Annie, who was carrying a large book, she asked—" shall I carry it for you, dear?" Indeed, her heart had forgotten all but love for Annie; and when she left the village she gave her a kind good-bye, and spoke very pleasantly to her. Supposing that when Mary told her to "go along!" Annie had spoken crossly in reply, how differently they would have felt to each other all the time Mary stayed with her grandfather! I expect their faces would often have been soured with anger; their voices would have sounded much less sweet; and the hearts were made so loving and gentle by Annie's present, would have been filled with feelings, which no little Christian child, who knows right from wrong, should give way to lore a moment. I wonder how many of the little children who read this story would have returned good for evil, like little Annie? You must remember her when you are spoken to, or treated in a way you do not like, and ask God to give you strength to do in all things as the Bible tells you is most pleasing to Him.