OCR Interpretation


Hobart herald. (Geneva, N.Y.) 1879-1942, February 01, 1908, Image 19

Image and text provided by Hobart and William Smith Colleges

Persistent link: http://nyshistoricnewspapers.org/lccn/np00050002/1908-02-01/ed-1/seq-19/


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Hobart Herald A ll about it the ground sloped away, but in the far background the sunset fires s till burned over a purple range o f hills, t h e ground white with snow, the tree standing gaunt in the cold twilight, and yet sharp cut against the red in the west. To this picture an y ­ one's attention m ight b e drawn. The Doctor gazed at it as if he would engrave its e v e r y detail on his brain. A t last he shook himself, almost a sigh escaped him and he settled down in his chair once more. “A man that likes pictures like that is worth knowing. It's odd, but I used to know a tree ju s t like that, in the sam e situa­ tion, too, and the course of my whole life depended upon th a t tree. Queer that an animate being should so depend on an inani­ mate. B u t I’m going to bother you, I know, with an id le story, interesting only to myself.” \B y no means, Doctor. I could not wish to spend m y time more pleasantly.” Not for worlds would he have broken off the other. \To knorv my true feelings about that picture, and t h a t tree, w e ’ll have to go back into the past. Use that imagination which I praised, for my words are inadequate, sadly so.” For a while the man w'as silent, his gaze centering itself again in the fire as it leaped and curled about a fresh log. Then he spoke thoughtfully, ruminatingly. “ If you can picture to yourself a hill country, not mountains but great bold hills, heaped up and sinking into valleys. No fertile land this, bu t rocky, with a soil grudging th e barest crops. It w'as a new' land. The w'ilderness still kept its outposts on the farther hills, and the pastures, the stubble fields were s e t out in a checkering of woodlots. To live one had to work, and the boys and girls grew prem aturely old -with the grinding toil. Some drifted to the cities, but usually t h e y came back. The lo v e of th e out doors brought them from an aimless life in the city. Born and bred in the open, in the em p ty spaces of the hills and sky, in a land of purple twilights, of flaming sunsets, o f white winters,

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