verses timidly offered by Becky, and then said, kindly but firmly:—
"This is not poetry, my dear girls, though the lines run smoothly enough, and the sentiment is sweet. It would bring neither fame nor money, and Rebecca puts more real truth, beauty, and poetry into her dutiful daily life than in any lines she has written."
"We had such a lovely plan for Becky to come to town with me, and see the world, and write, and be famous. How can you spoil it all?"
"My foolish little daughter, I must prevent you from spoiling this good girl's life by your rash projects. Becky will see that I am wise, though you do not, and she will understand this verse from my favorite poet, and lay it to heart:—
"So near is grandeur to our dust,
So nigh is God to man,
When Duty whispers low, 'Thou must!'
The youth replies, 'I can!'"
"I do! I will! please go on," and Becky's troubled eyes grew clear and steadfast as she took the words home to herself, resolving to live up to them.
"Oh, mother!" cried Emily, thinking her very cruel to nip their budding hopes in this way.
"I know you won't believe it now, nor be able to see all that I mean perhaps, but time will teach you both to own that I am right, and to value the substance more than the shadow," continued Mrs. Spenser. "Many girls write verses and think they are poets; but it is only a passing mood, and fortunately for the