In May Jimmy and a Gunner Officer sadly killed in the Arakan not long afterwards - both expert I enclose a photo [reproduced on p. It had been climbed for the first time by two Germans just before the War they were both interned and, as it was not a 'virgin' peak, the true mountaineer Jimmy was not interested in climbing it! Jimmy and friend carried out a 'recce' of the great mountain then unclimbed ; I went with them to their Camp at 18, ft.
Jimmy and friend reached about 22, ft. The serving team, under the leadership of Sasha Ball and Nicholas Pope, has been characteristically loyal. Indeed, all our visiting speakers comment favourably on the positive approach of the School in corporate worship. And, given that many of our speakers are school chaplains past or present, it is encouraging to hear this. At the end of King's Week the school play, devised by the cast, was illuminating in its indication of the perception of the place of worship in the School. At the moment of crisis, when the priest was helping the hero to overcome the temptation of Faust, the choir broke into the hymn-tune written for the School: 'To God with heart and cheerful voice.
Any more than there can be another school that expresses itself so positively in silence. Silence is the corporate expression of the School. For five minutes at the beginning of the Carol Service in a darkened Cathedral considerably more than two thousand people kept silence; at the end of a Remembrance Day service the School kept silence for fifteen minutes as we processed from the Shirley Hall to the War Memorial, there to lay individually our poppies. And in that silence there was a very powerful expression of the School as community: a recognition that we each contribute to the experience of others.
In silence there can be listening; in silence there can be communication. In our life together these are important attributes: silence is a medium much underused. If there be any value in being a Christian school and community, it must be in learning how to encourage and affirm one another without denying the difficulties but experiencing the fullness of life. It is in that spirit of preparedness to learn from each other that the Chapel Council has this term been established, under the chairmanship of one of the School Monitors, Charles Miller-Jones.
Its composition is half staff and half pupils, and its deliberations have been impressively thoughtful. VALE musician, described by the Director of Music, Stefan Anderson, as 'an immensely dedicated and supportive member of the Chapel Choir and Choral Society, always professional in his approach and setting a fine example to the pupils'.
Moreover, he has contributed to The Cantuarian many excellent reviews of musical events, not least of King's Week organ recitals in which he always delighted. Coming from Edinburgh University in , after a short spell at Abingdon School, Raymond quickly established himself here first and foremost as an outstanding teacher of Physics. The Head of Science, Chris Jackson, comments that Raymond has been 'an extremely intelligent physicist and a dedicated teacher, at his best with the most able pupils, particularly those in A top-class oarsman in his day, Raymond also the Sixth Form.
He sets high standards and expects the coached rowing here very successfully for many years same standards from those he teaches. He is well and I recall an example from the early days, which I organised and well respected by his A level pupils, who hope is not apocryphal, of the respect accorded to him know they can rely on him to cover the syllabus content on the river. Two novice Shell boys approached him at effectively'. This is confirmed by the Head of Physics, Fordwich to receive their first-ever rowing coaching, in Jonathan Allday, who adds that 'trite though it seems to a 'bank tub'.
A was startled to hear two loud Fellow of the Royal Astronomical splashes as, confused by his Society, and the man responsible ambiguous instruction and too for establishing the school awe-struck to seek clarification, observatory at the top of St the boys had dutifully jumped Mary's Hall, he has specialised in into the river! Astrophysics and his depth of For a long time too Raymond knowledge in that area is took on the essential, but astounding.
Many pupils have demanding, task of organising benefited from his ability to take the Rotulus, long before the them beyond the confines of the days of databases. In the department, I small part at least of his legacy will miss the fact that Raymond to the School. Moreover, from has always been utterly reliable the inception of the Senior and would always do whatever Subject Masters' now Heads was asked of him by exactly the of Departments' Meetings, deadline requested. This is not to Raymond acted as Secretary, mention his inspirational producing each time a organisation of the Physics meticulously thorough and Olympiad over many years.
For a while, he was Raymond Butt. Michael Foale. Hearing of Raymond's retirement, Raymond also made an important mark as a House Michael sent an open letter to be read out as a surprise tutor. I owe him a personal debt of gratitude for the help for Raymond at a dinner given in his honour, a tribute which he gave me in the early s in running which I think moved him deeply. It is reproduced in Lattergate, then a 'Waiting House', as do a succession of full on the following page.
Housemasters and pupils in Galpin's ever since. A man of great principle and integrity, syllabuses. The school was not slow to take advantage his no-nonsense approach kept boys focussed, fulfilled of this expertise as, when Canon Pilkington was and ultimately happier. He never feared telling truths thinking of building Mitchinson's House, he charged where in the long run boys would be the stronger for Raymond with ascertaining where its shadow would them.
We will miss his holding court in the entrance hall fall at different times of the day and the year! It is no coincidence that, despite a hat trick of important contributions to the life of the School and English teachers as Housemasters, a series of has left gaps which will be difficult to fill. A former outstanding scientists have 'graduated' from Raymond's choirboy at Peterborough Cathedral, he is a fine tutor set to Oxbridge'.
Two members of that party have contributed a note of thanks, m which they say how much they enJoyed It, particularly how 'Mr Butt struck the perfect balance between being one of us an? We all really appreciated what fun he made the trip. Even when one of our party was detamed at the local pollee station, he could enjoy the ridiculous side of it. We are deeply grateful to him'. It is good to know, though, that as one door has closed for him, another has opened, In that he has been called by the Church to service in the Russian Orthodox Church.
He is also now involved at a national level in the Physics Olympiad and no doubt, too, he will be able to find more time to pursue his interest in railway. The bane of Connex South Eastern and its predecessor British Rail , only Raymond could command on request a taxi and even, on one occasion, a special train, in the absence of the advertised service at Ashford Station! On behalf of all his colleagues, friends and pupils at King's over a great many years, I thank Raymond for all he has done here in thirty years of outstanding schoolmastering and wish him every happiness and success in the future.
Tum to face blackboard; reach for bottle of Stolichnaya from filing cabinet and take a large draught to induce a suitably embarrassedlooking complexion; tum to face class; wait for expected question from Foale. Mr Patten willingly, if a little apprehensively, obliged; and so the patient put this question to him: 'If the British are such faithful followers of democracy, why were the people of Hong Kong not given a referendum to decide for themselves whether the island should be returned to China?
Cameras flashing. Hundreds of milling, smartlydressed people. Pristine, hard-backed books stacked up, waiting to be bought and signed. How in the world, How very ironic, mused Mr. Patten, that out of the I thought helplessly, was I going to fulfil the thousands of people he had spoken to during his five spectacular coup I'd rashly promised The Big Ed back years in Hong Kong, the most prudent and sensible in England, when there were TV crews surrounding question had come from a mental asylum patient!
I was extremely fortunate in being able to speak to The reason I was in this situation at all was because, Chris Patten for a few minutes towards the end of the as part of the world promotional tour for Chris Patten's evening after the queues of people wanting their book East and West, he and his wife Lavender were books signed had dispersed. The first question I staying in Singapore for several days during October. In the why? The impression I was given was that this few minor hitches with the microphones, which almost could be a go0d thing.
Mr Patten My next question was whether people who visited spoke succinctly and answered several challenging Hong Kong a few years ago would find many changes questions with great expertise. I particularly remember in years to come. To this Mr Patten replied that yes, one amusing anecdote he told. On a visit to a hospital there would definitely be some changes. For a start, the for the mentally ill, shortly before leaving Hong Kong, population would have far greater Chinese influx from many of the patients were eager to shake Mr Patten's their native country, and this would lead to marketing hand, despite some uncertainty as to who he was.
Naturally, many things left by the British will remain, but the colonial, expat feel of the place will gradually be less evident. The system was fresh and welcoming all the way through - there was no corruption. Within Hong Kong, there was very little opposition to the British rule, and any new policies introduced were always carried out quickly and efficiently.
New ideas were generally received with real enthusiasm, which was always encouraging. The most challenging part was having to ensure Hong Kong was handed over with a stable and prosperous government. That done, having to say goodbye was very difficult too. He answered that the long term future had yet to be determined, but for the next few months he has been appointed Chairman of the Independent Commission on Policing in Northern Ireland, where their main aim will be to ensure an equal balance between Protestants and Catholics in policing.
This will take until around next summer, and then after that, who knows what the future will hold? One thing is for sure, those five memorable years in Hong Kong have certainly left their legacy: the Pattens will never be forgotten. Benjamin Disraeli, Sybil, As I explained to him my first impression of apartheid, he turned to the other people of our age in the street.
It seems to me, he said, that you have apartheid here too, but social apartheid. Just as the gap between black and white in South Africa had been obvious to me as an outsider, so the gulf between rich and poor was clear to Ross from his arrival in England. Ross raised an issue that I had not previously considered, an issue which we take for granted: that the education we receive here at King's is a privilege open to few. Having been. Edward Vainker -left hand resting on the table with a Prime Minister's insouciance- in King's Parliament. Philharmonic Orchestras. So, in his own words: 'I get around!
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It was very good if you were musical, like me. The person who most inspired him and who guided him throughout his school career was the then Music Director Edred Wright. Mr Wright's technique was very much in favour of looking to the emotional side of music, which prevented it from becoming 'tight-arsed', so I was informed! He says of his relationship with Canon Shirley: 'I got on like a house on fire with him, because I brought glory to the School through music.
This I did, until some other boy was sent to tackle me. We both went flying. It was very painful, and I decided I never wanted to play the game again. Finally he was excused from the game on the grounds that the roughness of the sport could affect his musicianship, but it caused problems for the School in later years, as Christopher was frequently quoted as a precedent by others. The response was that the two knew each other fairly well, as the Canon was a great music lover himself: 'I would be playing in a concert, and suddenly my eye would fall upon the Headmaster in the front row.
He would be sitting there totally enraptured, like a little boy at a pantomime. There really was quite a sweet side to him. Those foolish enough to be caught drinking or smoking would not only be caned but would have to endure the public humiliation of having their names published, together with their misdemeanour and the number of strokes they would receive. Two very significant events happened during Christopher's time at King's.
The first was the visit of the Queen Mother, when he was chosen as one of twelve boys to be presented to her. Momentarily confused, it took a while for me to figure out what the joke was. I was most grateful to my interviewee for helpfully pointing out that no arch that had yet to be built was worthy of the adjective 'historic'! We cannot fail to be influenced by the attitude of Margaret Thatcher, who on television in remarked that 'no one would have remembered the good Samaritan if he'd had only good intentions; he had money as well.
This is the challenge that faces Tony Blair's government, to redress the balance following successive Tory governments who encouraged an individualistic, some would say selfish, outlook on society. It is said that the vast majority of children follow the voting behaviour of their parents, especially when their allegiance reflects the political preference of their social class. The result of our election is therefore unsurprising, especially given that there is little political education in the British school curriculum. I would therefore urge you to take this opportunity to consider your own political allegiance, because the essence of a democratic society is that it is a thoughtful one.
I quote Mrs Thatcher once again: 'There is no such thing as society; there are individual men and women and there are families, and no government can do anything except through people, and people must look after themselves. It is our duty to look after ourselves first and then to look after our neighbour. During the summer months it was my great privilege to meet one of Britain's best-known conductors, Christopher Seaman, who attended the School as a day pupil in Marlowe House from to He was halfway through a prestigious 'round the world' tour and fortunately for me decided to stop off in Singapore.
We met just before one of his performances, and the first thing I noticed, and appreciated, was how he immediately made an effort to make me feel at ease when he must have had plenty of other things to do with his time. After Singapore he would be returning to his home town of Glasgow - but not for long, as he currently holds the position of Music Director with both the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra and the Naples Florida Philharmonic Orchestra.
The second event was the sad, untimely death of Christopher's father. Here, both Canon Shirley and his wife showed great humanity and kindness towards him and towards others in similar circumstances. We were comfortable. But Canon Shirley often put his hand into his pocket and gave generously to those who needed it. Mrs Shirley also demonstrated great warmth in the most discreet ways, and helped many boys. I knew nothing about drugs for they were hardly around.
I suppose it was mainly for drinking or smoking offences. There were quite a few boys expelled from Meister Omers, I seem to recall. But time was up; the busy musician had another appointment. The interview ended in a typically congenial manner as I shook hands with Mr Seaman, whilst politely being asked how I thought my '0-levels' had gone. Some would have in their arms I A young gazelle One of them makes a primal, agonized gesture: 'She is gouging the leafmould, I She is anointing her face with it.
However, Lumb combines the roles of Pentheus and Dionysus, for it is he who is immolated: 'The blood from his burst head washes his face and neck I In thin solution and ropy lumps.. In this context note that Hughes employs the image of the double, for Lumb's double rises from a lake to fight with him at one point, just as Euripides has Pentheus exclaim in the Bacchic state: 'I seem to see two suns, and a double Thebes with its seven gates. Hughes seems to be stressing modem man's alienation from nature again. Pentheus' shift of consciousness has become the priest's 'antagonist In the Bacchae, Dionysus' visit to Thebes has a purpose: he has come to educate people.
He is now reading Classics and English at Oxford. Ted Hughes' Gaudete is a prose-poem written in It draws very strongly upon the Bacchae, forming an ironic echo of Euripides' play centred around Hughes' perennial themes of the links between nature and human consciousness, and the role and value of myth. Gaudete tells how an 'Anglican clergyman', the Rev. Lumb, is abducted into the 'otherworld' by spirits. In this otherworld, a double is made of the priest from a treebole, and is sent back into the world.
I shall bring out some of the ways in which Hughes has restructured elements of the Bacchae. The central character in Gaudete, the Rev. Lumb, himself created out of wood although he does not re. The Maenads experience. When Pentheus does not learn these lessons willingly, Dionysus shows no mercy. Cadmus' anguished appeal 'Gods should not be like mortals in vindictiveness!
His influence means the suspension of all human boundaries and laws in the grip of an ecstatic flux. We can see this in Pentheus' gradual slide into this state, in which his perceptions are disordered. Dionysus says: 'I made a mockery of him. He thought he was binding me but As Dionysus says: 'I am sane and you are mad. We can see this in his terrifyingly cool response to her and Cadmus' anguish: 'You learnt too late. In contrast, the Bacchae-like events of Gaudete - Lumb's maenads, the unity with nature, his immolation - will have no consequences.
The corpses of Lumb and some of his attendant women are piled onto a table in his church basement, and unceremoniously set alight. The poem ends: 'All evidence goes up. Indeed, Lumb's whole mission seems to have failed. Lumb's sense of the power in nature in an early part of the poem is clear: 'If the trees were trees only This would be safe.
I From the gutters of space A spiritless by-product I Of the fact that things exist at all. In conclusion, we can read Hughes' Gaudete as a clever reworking of elements drawn from the Bacchae, making an ironic point about what Hughes sees as the human need for connection, but addressing his doubts about the consequences of this. Perhaps, he suggests, such a quest can only be the province now of the tortured mystic - or the poet. His use of the Bacchae is complex and subtle, and the irony of Gaudete derives from the translation of the Bacchae to twentiethcentury Britain.
Their attempt to partake of this communion becomes an atavistic retreat into violence and death. The idea of two months at an unfamiliar school was both daunting and exciting. But any worries I might have had were immediately put to rest during my first evening at the school, as everyone was extremely friendly. The day at Hilton starts at 7. But this early start was certainly worth the effort, owing to the fact that every day finished at lunchtime - ensuring that the whole afternoon could be given over to sport, which was a large part of school life.
This was certainly reflected in the boys' commitment and ability - the school boasted some of the strongest hockey and rugby sides in the province of Natal, and although at Hilton and indeed in South Africa rugby is life, the school also has sports ranging from shooting and water-polo to rowing and kayaking. One of the main differences between Hilton and King's is the complete difference of environment in which they are found.
Whereas King's is in the middle of a city, Hilton is situated in nearly 2, hectares of bush and farmland, although the nearest town is only 20km away. The estate included many types of plants and wildlife, as well as a set of spectacular waterfalls. Crossing the river on the school's estate allowed close-up viewing of the many giraffe and zebra that grazed there.
Once a week there was a night game drive around the estate in which the numbers of each animal were recorded ' for conservation purposes. It is this estate that makes Hilton so unique and it is one that is certainly valued by all there. Another difference is the way that the prefects, both School and House, play a much larger part in the running of the school and the Head of School has large amounts of administration to deal with. But for this he is rewarded with his own house called Falconia , complete with sitting-room, telephones, bathroom and kitchen.
Paul Galatis the exchange student to King's two years ago had the privilege of occupying Falconia this year. The exchange programme at Hilton is well established and there were also visitors from Harrow, Eton and Wrekin College. My fellow exchange students and I took full advantage of the estate on a camping excursion which lasted a couple of days. We were supplied by the kitchen with plenty of food which we cooked over the fire; the food trunk included everything from steaks to hot chocolate.
The following day started with an early morning swim in the cold but refreshing river which was only yards away from where we had been camping and just across the river we could see giraffe grazing. During my time at Hilton, there were two events of memorable m-agnitude.
First was the 'HiltonMichaelhouse'. Played on a Saturday, it is a vast rugby festival against Hilton's biggest sporting rival. Throughout the day, teams of all age groups play each other leading up to the First XV match which A testament to this particular match's scale and significance is the fact that the report in the following day's newspaper was the size of an A4 piece of paper!
The other major event was the annual Drama Festival, spanning three days, where some of South Africa's best drama and comedy acts could be seen performing at various locations around the school. What struck me as particularly different from our own King's Week apart from it being a 'professional' festival was the presence of nearly a hundred stalls selling everything from furniture and jewellery to toys and clothes. These, coupled with the many food stalls, produced an incredible atmosphere that surrounded the whole festival.
My favourite performance by far was the absolutely hilarious but rather controversial stand-up comedian John Vlismas, whose Man In Black act had the entire audience in fits of laughter. However, the highlight of my stay in South Africa was my trip to Cape Town after the end of term. Driving down from Hilton to Cape Town took the best part of two days, but this was made worthwhile as it allowed me to see many different parts of the country and also meant travelling along the famous Garden Route, a road with breathtaking scenery.
Cape Town, situated under the shadow of the famous Table Mountain, is one of the most beautiful cities in the world. On a magnificent coastline with luscious green mountains in the background, the city is flanked by spotless white beaches that draw millions of visitors a year. The city itself is modern and lively with many shops, markets and excellent restaurants and of course tourist attractions , most of which are found at the stunning newly-renovated Victoria and Albert Waterfront. Unfortunately, I was unable to get up Table Mountain due to the weather, but this provided a good excuse to go wine tasting at one of the many vineyards in the Cape.
I hope to visit Cape Town again in the near future. My time at Hilton and in South Africa was an incredible experience of which I have unforgettable memories. I met some amazing people and gained a valuable insight into life at another school, and my stay there has not only taught me to appreciate home, but also certain aspects of school which had previously gone unnoticed. The difference in wealth of the rich and the poor is astonishing, and I think that only education can change this.
Also, there are many misconceptions about the country, the most common. But this is not the case, as the majority of the violence is part of the power struggle between the ANC and its rival parties. The South Africa that I saw was one of vast potential, but it may take many years for this to be fully realised. However, in the meantime it is still a wonderful country that I would very much like to return to.
Lastly, I would like to thank Mr Phillis the exchange coordinator and all those involved for making the exchange possible. Most of those involved did not have to put up with the commuting nightmare - even though the rush-hour mini-bus crawl had its realistic moments - but all the same the experience as a whole was sufficiently authentic to open our minds to an active working environment, work-mates who would provide no chances for slacking, and an unadulterated insight into working life.
Ellie Hill's day at the Canterbury Times resulted in a photo of her standing 'beside a giant lollipop' appearing in this local newspaper, she having been lucky enough to attend a personal preview of an art exhibition at K. Georgina Zucchini-Watts spent a week at Dover Water-Sports Centre, consequently gaining herself a permanent job for the rest of the summer she wouldn't reveal the fantastic pay , and also being awarded an RYA Level 2 power-boating certificate.
She too had some bad experiences though, her worst being 'cleaning the changing-rooms', which were found to be providing homes to such charming items as 'soggy knickers , forgotten trunks and much other mislaid miscellaneous' - further details were, fortunately, not given. A few days with the architects Paul Roberts were thoroughly enjoyed by a budding Norman Foster and he found by the end of it that he had 'gained knowledge of the working world, enjoyed designing a house, but got fed up with running little errands' for his colleagues at work. Edward PowellJackson spent a week at a veterinary practice in Herne Bay, which provided him with a very useful insight into what a vet's job actually entails, along with the distinctly unglamorous chore of having to 'clean out dirty dog-kennels'.
However, despite this, his week was thoroughly enjoyed - the highlight being 'assisting in surgery'. Yet another person who had a good time during her first taste of a working environment was Tori Hunt who spent five days at the Stone Bay School for autistic children. Unfortunately she too experienced the all-too-well-known commuting nightmare, spending 'three hours' on a round trip by public transport. The school ' work experience scheme provides a good opportunity for post-GCSE students to broaden their horizons, make new friends and gain something positive while doing so.
The project was generally enjoyed, and it's certainly something that should be tried even if, by the end, it only shows you what is not the career for you. Blue Mosque, as you can read about those in any one of hundreds of tourist guides printed about the city: suffice to say that they are beautiful buildings which must surely be among the current seven wonders of the world.
I would suggest to anyone who does visit to make an effort to see the Cisterns and the Mosaic Church as these are not as busy as the more mainstream attractions and are just as rewarding. An estimated 14 million people currently live here, not including the 'street rats' who live in ramshackle corrugated-iron huts in any area of wasteland, so the population is hugely diverse. There is wealth in Istanbul: the Bosphorus is lined with the villas of the wealthy and some Turkish companies have expanded overseas bringing wealth to the predominantly Turkish workforce.
However there is also great poverty, as one would expect in what must still be considered a third world country. These people are not the servants who have very little; or the owners of small stores in the Bazaar who sell very little but always get by. I am referring here to the people with nothing, the crippled victims of some long-forgotten war, who can survive on nothing but the pity of others. There is a man who begs from outside the car park in which we park to go to the Bazaar; he has lost both his legs and drags himself from one begging spot to another using a piece of cardboard as a makeshift sledge whenever he gets moved along by another less deformed beggar.
People sometimes laugh at him and call him names. I was once reliably informed by the owner of the car park that he was crazy. I didn't find it hard to see why. I don't want to dwell on the bad things about Istanbul, although inevitably they make more interesting reading than my good experiences. It is a remarkable city, and all of you should at some point in your life visit it.
I also don't want to dwell on the main tourist attractions such as the Hagia Sophia and the. The Cisterns were a great find and now prove to be the highlight of the trip for many people who come to stay with us in Istanbul. They are a cool and tranquil alternative to stiflingly hot and suffocatingly busy prime attractions. Set about fifty metres underground, these catacombs were used by the Ottomans and Romans to bring and store water from the Belgrade forests north of Istanbul to the city's inhabitants.
Although now unused, there is still water in them and so the whole area is very humid. A quick walk round reveals a Medusa's head carved into the rock centuries ago to ward off evil spirits. The Mosaic Church catalogues the life of Jesus and the early disciples through mosaics on the walls. This is my personal favourite of the monuments, although as most of the mosaics are on the ceiling all my visits here have resulted in a very stiff neck the next day.
The highlight of any visit to Istanbul must be the Grand Bazaar. It is a fantastic place and, although to some the shopkeepers can seem threatening, the people who work there are a friendly bunch and, if you don't look too much like a wide-eyed tourist, there are some serious bargains to be made. The carpets are gorgeous - even a cultural heathen such as myself can appreciate them, and even those paying tourist rates can get good deals on some beautiful rugs.
As a recognised local you can pay at least half the going rate for tourists and a Turk would pay peanuts compared even to that. Once inside the stadium, however, you are safe, since a very large police presence prevents violence from spilling out during a match. Simply put, Istanbul is a 'must see'. At some point in their lives everyone should set foot in the the Blue Mosque and Hagia Sophia - well over fourteen centuries old - as well as the Grand Bazaar, one of life's great experiences.
As a resident of Istanbul I am lucky since I have the chance to meet the people who own the shops in the Bazaar, to understand the passionate nature of the Turkish people and in some ways to experience the life they live. Turks are astonishingly passionate about their football, and the matches I have seen in Turkey have been the most thrilling I have ever seen in my ten years of following the sport. As Nick Hornby pointed out in his book Fever Pitch, what makes the matches so exciting is not just the football - although in one match I saw, Turkey against Wales, which finished six-four, this undoubtedly helped - but the crowd.
The level of noise throughout the whole ninety minutes is deafening; war drums provide a constant tribal heartbeat to the proceedings and the players play their part in inciting the crowd by jeering at the opposing fans whenever they score a goal. Turkey's big three Galatasary, Besiktas and Fenerbac;he - as well as a lot of the other clubs in the Turkish league are all from Istanbul, so many games are local derbies providing an extra edge of excitement.
A match between the big. FOCUS arguments, as well as impressing their audience with Helen's points of information which exposed any flaws in the opposition's arguments and Graham's ability to wax lyrical about truth and justice. The second debate, for which we were allowed only fifteen minutes to prepare, was on the motion: 'This House believes we should write off Third World debt.
For the 'A' side Ed combined an impressive amount of knowledge of both subjects with some brilliant quips and Charlie's wit and ability to make even the best-reasoned argument sound absurd led to their eventual overall victory by a small margin over the 'B' side, and qualification for the regional round of the competition. Eighteen months after Labour's landslide victory, King's Parliament made an equally emphatic return with a motion passed of no confidence in Her Majesty's Government. The current Labour Government consisting of the Hon. Minister for Trades cant Alex Reeve , the Hon.
The Tories' support helped them to appear more confident and relaxed, as the Leader of the Opposition Roland Phillips and the Hon. Minister for Linacre Ed Reed made life very difficult for the Labour frontbenchers. The Hon. Minister for The Grange Charles Hickey failed to appear for the proceedings amid rumours of another Tory sleaze scandal, but his presence wasn't missed as the Hon. Charlie Rice troubled Labour with a barrage of uncomfortable questioning. Highlights of the debate included the Hon.
Ivo Neame's categorical denouncement of Labour's policy towards licensing laws and the Hon. Mark Gilchrist's lament over the change in hunting laws. Labour's main avenue of defence came in attack and they launched a stinging condemnation of the Conservatives' behaviour before and after the election. They asked: 'If not Labour - then who? As the evening progressed the Tory backbenchers joined in the slaughter and, with the Labour frontbenchers finding little support from the predominantly female MPs behind them, perhaps the only surprising thing about the outcome was the small margin of Labour's defeat - fifty-two votes to fortyseven.
Its aim was to give these children an idea of how science is taught at King's. They were given an experiment to do for each science. The Biologists identified the contents of various urine samples; the Chemists discovered the contents of various salts; and the Physicists made thermometers. The afternoon went well: there were no major explosions and on the whole the pupils enjoyed themselves as well as learning about science. One child from Windlesham said: 'It was really good!
They concentrate on linking what children and young people learn at school to what they do in their everyday life. The aim is to help initiate activities that raise young people's awareness of how they can use their own skills and ideas to take control of their lives. Their volunteers carry out activities such as organising AIDS poster campaigns, teaching rounders, running a paper recycling workshop or co-ordinating an environmental awareness event for the local school. Each year a number of King's students participate in the scheme, the majority of whom find the experience very gratifying and would 'recommend anyone who isn't just looking for a cheap holiday to go for it'.
With the attraction of a cash prize and a trip to Cambridge, as well as the opportunity to test wits against the country's best, the level of competition in this qualifying round was fierce. The task of getting through was difficult against teams from Kent College and Chatham House School for Boys, and, as only one team qualified, the two King's sides could find no help from each other.
The first debate was about Proportional Representation: there was a week to plan for the topic, so all sides presented well-reasoned arguments and made many valid points. In the end our 'B' team, arguing for P. It was improvements like these that they found most rewarding, and surprise was expressed at the general enthusiasm to learn: 'Nothing is quite so humbling as seeing these huge boys having great pleasure in reading Topsy and Tim books. The original idea for the week was to bring a group of about children to King's School, and with the help of a lot of volunteers we would look after them and give them the chance to do things that they would never normally do.
So I recruited the help of three other girls who also thought that they were lagging behind in the charity department. Hutch was sent. He was sent for ripping a mail sack while he was driving the mail wagon up from the station, and before he come back he done two years down to Atlanta. So one night early in March, Burbie and Hutch went out and done the job. Hutch, he seen her go, and come running to Burbie saying now was a good time, which was just what Burbie wanted. It was kind of like you might say the savings of a lifetime. So the old man let them in and give them a drink of some hard cider what he had, and they got canned up a little more.
And then Hutch he got back of the old man and crowned him with a wrench what he had hid in his coat. He just set there, first looking at the money, what he had piled up on a table, and then looking at Burbie. And then Burbie commences soft-soaping him. He says hope my die he thought there was a thousand dollars anyway in the pot, on account the old man being like he was.
And he says hope my die it sure was a big surprise to him how little there was there. And right in the middle of while Burbie was talking, they heard a whole lot of hollering out in front of the house and somebody blowing a automobile horn. And Hutch jumps up and scoops the money and the wrench off the table in his pockets, and hides the pot back in the fireplace.
And then he grabs the old man and him and Burbie carries him out the back door, hists him in the wagon, and drives off. And how they was to drive off without them people seeing them was because they come in the back way and that was the way they went. Well, Hutch and Burbie was in a hell of a fix all right. So Burbie, he commence to whimper. So pretty soon they come to a place where they was building a piece of county road, and it was all tore up and a whole lot of toolboxes laying out on the side. So Hutch gets out and twists the lock off one of them with the wrench, and takes out a pick and a shovel and throws them in the wagon.
And Hutch turns in there and pretty soon he come to a kind of a clear place and he stopped. So Burbie dug the grave. But anyhow Hutch stopped him and they throwed the old man in and covered him up. But after they got him covered up his head was sticking out. So Hutch beat the head down good as he could and piled the dirt up around it and they got in and drove off. And then Hutch says he was lying and with that he hit Burbie. And after he knocked Burbie down in the bottom of the wagon he kicked him and then pretty soon Burbie up and told him about Lida.
And when Burbie got done telling him about Lida, Hutch turned the horse around. So they come back for to git a present for Lida. It made Burbie sick, but Hutch made him stick at it, and after a while Burbie had it off. So Hutch throwed it in the wagon and they get in and start back to town once more. And then he takes hisself another slug of corn and stands up and whoops. Then he beat on the horse with the whip and the horse commence to run. What I mean, he commence to gallop. And then Hutch hit him some more. And then he commence to screech as loud as he could. Here come old broadcuff down the road!
So he done it. Next off, Hutch give a yell and drop down in the bottom of the wagon. You see, Burbie done forgot that it was a cold night and the creek done froze over. Not much, just a thin skim about a inch thick, but enough that when that head hit it, it cracked pretty loud in different directions.
And that was what scared Hutch. So when he got up and seen the head setting out there on the ice in the moonlight, and got it straight what Burbie done, he let on he was going to kill Burbie right there. And he reached for the pick. So we all went down there and first thing we seen was that head laying out there on the ice, kind of rolled over on one ear. And the next thing we seen was the hole in the ice where Hutch fell through. And the next thing we seen down on the bottom next to one of the bridge pilings, was Hutch. So the first thing we went to work and done was to get the head.
And believe me a head laying out on thin ice is a pretty damn hard thing to get, and what we had to do was to lasso it. And the next thing we done was to get Hutch. And near as I can figure out, what happened to him was that after Burbie run away he climbed down on the bridge piling and tried to reach the head and fell in. They had the funeral and Lida cried like hell and everybody tried to figure out what Hutch wanted with the head and things went along thataway for three weeks. So right in the middle of it Burbie kind of looked around like he always done and then he winked.
And Benny Heath, he kept on a-talking, and after he got done Burbie kind of leaned over and commence to talk to him. I already told you Burbie was pretty good when it comes to giving a spiel at a entertainment. Well, this here was a kind of spiel too. Burbie act like he had it all learned by heart. And the big idea was what a whole lot of hell he done raised in his life. Burbie said it was drink and women what done ruined him. And then he told about how sorry he was about the life he done led, and how hope my die he come home to his old hometown just to get out the devilment and settle down.
And then he told how she done led him on till he got the idea to kill the old man. And then he told about how him and Hutch done it, and all about the money and the head and all the rest of it. You could see he was proud of hisself. He kind of lain there a couple of minutes till Benny got him up and put him in the car and tooken him off to jail.
And I hear tell he knows it pretty good by now and has got the crying down pat. Steve Stephen Gould Fisher was born in Marine City, Illinois, and joined the Marines at the age of sixteen, moving to California when he was discharged in Fisher was an even more prolific writer for television, producing more than scripts for such long-running series as McMillan and Wife, Barnaby Jones, Starsky and Hutch, Cannon, and 77 Sunset Strip, among many others.
What had been a moderately successful career changed in when he wrote I Wake Up Screaming, which was adapted in the same year into what is generally regarded as the first film noir. Drown it! I hate bugles anyway, but the way this guy Pushton all but murders reveille kills me. I went back to my bed and grabbed my shoes and puttees and slammed them on the floor in front of me, then I began unbuttoning my pajamas. When they did see a paper all they read was the funnies. Like dividing the dormitories according to ages. Anybody with any sense knows that it should be according to grades because just take for instance this wing.
And I have to live with the little pukes. So I kept my mouth shut and got dressed, then I beat it out into the company street before the battalion got lined up for the flag raising. Making us stand around with empty stomachs, shivering goose pimples while they pull up the flag and Pushton blows the bugle again. I know. I was there a month. So I guess the best thing for me to do was to let the academy have their Simple Simon flag-waving fun and not kick about it.
Did you see a paper last night? What about Tommy Smith? What about Tommy Smith. That hit me like a sledge on the back of my head and I felt words rushing to the tip of my tongue and then sliding back down my throat. I felt weak, like my stomach was all tied up in a knot. Where I come in is that I got a crush on Marie, the youngest sister. A year older than me. So that was it; they were going to swing Tommy after all, and Marie would be bawling on my shoulder for six months. I got lined up in the twelve-year-old company, at the right end because I was line sergeant.
We did squads right and started marching toward the flagpole. I felt like hell. We swung to a company front and halted. Pushton started in on the bugle. I watched him with my eyes burning. Gee, I hate buglers, and Pushton is easy to hate anyway. And does he think being bugler is an important job! The little runt struts around like he was Gabriel, and he walks with his buttocks sticking out one way and his chest the other.
I watched him now, but I was thinking more about Tommy Smith. Some silly thing. I will say he deserved killing, the old grouch. He used to chase me with his cane. Marie says he used to get up at night and wander around stomping that cane as he walked. At least that was the defense the lawyer wanted to present. He wanted to present that, with Tommy pleading guilty, and hope for an acquittal.
But Tommy stuck to straight denials on everything. The way everything shaped up the state proved he was a drunken liar and the jury saw it that way. Tommy was a nice enough sort. He played football at his university, was a big guy with blond hair and a ruddy face, and blue eyes. He had a nice smile, white and clean like he scrubbed his teeth a lot. I guess his old man had been right about that girl, though, because when all this trouble started she dropped right out of the picture, went to New York or somewhere with her folks.
I was thinking about this when we began marching again; and I was still thinking about it when we came in for breakfast about forty minutes later, after having had our arms thrown out of joint in some more silly stuff called setting-up exercises. I sat at the breakfast table cracking my egg and watching the guy across from me hog six of them.
I wanted to laugh. People think big private schools are the ritz and that their sons, when they go there, mix with the cream of young America. There are a few kids whose last names you might see across the front of a department store like Harker Bros. So they put us here. Then the brat is taken care of so far as his parents are concerned, and he has the prestige of a fancy Clark uniform. But when old man Clark had dough-ray-me clutched in his right fist he was blind to records like that.
Well, as I say, I was watching this glutton stuff eggs down his gullet which he thought was a smart thing to do even though he got a bellyache afterward, when the guy on my right said:. I threw my water in his face, then I got up, facing the table captain and the guy on my right. What do you loudmouthed half-wits think you know about it? All you morons know is what you read in the papers.
I was right there in the house before it happened. I sat down, plenty mad. I sat down because I had seen a faculty officer coming into the dining room. We all kept still until he walked on through. Then the table captain sneered and said:. He stuck a knife right through his back! All that Monday I felt pretty bad thinking about Tommy, what a really swell guy he had been, always laughing, always having a pat on the back for you.
I knew he must be in a cell up in San Quentin now, waiting, counting the hours, maybe hearing them build his scaffold. I read about Two Gun Crowley, I think it was, who went to the chair with his head thrown back and his chest out like he was proud of it. But there must have been something underneath, and Crowley, at least, knew that he had it coming to him. The real thing must be different than what you read in the papers. It must be pretty awful. But in spite of all this I had sense enough to stay away from Marie all day. I could easily have gone to her house, which was across the street from the campus, but I knew that she and her sister, Ruth, and that Duff Ryan, the young detective who had made the arrest — because, as he said, he thought it was his duty — had counted on the commutation of sentence.
No, sir. I sat in the study hall Monday evening thinking about the whole thing. Outside the window I could see the stars crystal clear; and though it was warm in the classroom I could feel the cold of the air in the smoky blue of the night, so that I shivered. When they marched us into the dormitory at eight-thirty, Simmons, the mess captain, started razzing me about Tommy being innocent again, and I said:. There was no more said, and when I went to bed and the lights went off I lay there squirming while that fat-cheeked Pushton staggered through taps with his bugle.
What a damn thing that was — robbing me of my sleep! I finally went to sleep. I chased up to the main building and got right on the wire. It was Duff Ryan, that young detective I told you about. Martin sounds sissy. My name is Thorpe. I sat there for a minute. This sounded fishy to me. Of course, Duff might be on the level, but I doubted it. You can never tell what a guy working for the law is going to do. I trotted out to the campus and on across to the Smith house. Their mother had died a long while ago, so with the father murdered, and Tommy in the death house, there were only the two girls left.
Duff answered the door himself. I looked up at the big bruiser and then I sucked in my breath. His face was almost gray. Under his eyes were the biggest black rings I had ever seen. I mean the other kind, the serious kind you get from worry. He had short clipped hair that was sort of reddish, and shoulders that squared off his figure, tapering it down to a nice V.
Of course, he was plenty old, around twenty-six, but at this his being a detective surprised you because ordinarily he looked so much like a college kid. He always spoke in a modulated voice and never got excited over anything. And he had a way of looking at you that I hated. A quiet sort of way that asked and answered all of its own questions. Personally, as a detective, I thought he was a big flop. The kind of detectives that I prefer seeing are those giant fighters that blaze their way through a gangster barricade.
Duff Ryan was none of this. I suppose he was tough but he never showed it. She was sitting on the divan with her legs pulled up under her and her face hidden. She had a handkerchief pressed in her hand. She was a slim kid, but well developed for fifteen, so well developed in fact that for a while I had been razzed about this at school. Like Tommy, she had blond hair, only hers was fluffy and came partway to her shoulders.
She turned now and her face was all red from crying, but I still thought she was pretty. She had wide-spaced green eyes, and soft, rosy skin, and a generous mouth. Her only trouble, if any, was that she was a prude. That is, I walked along beside her holding a one-way conversation. Finally I skipped a Sunday, then the next one she asked me where I had been, and that started the ball rolling. Come over here and sit down beside me. I went over and sat down and she straightened up, like she was ashamed that she had been crying, and put on a pretty good imitation of a smile. Straighten up.
About five minutes later she did straighten up. Duff Ryan was sitting over in the corner looking out the window, but it was just like we were alone. Those kinds of songs just drone along in the same pitch and never get anywhere. My fists were tight now and my fingers were going in and out. She knew better than to bring up that subject. It was the only thing we had ever argued about. Playing hymns. Just an obsession with me, I guess. She seemed pleased, and at least the argument had gotten her to quit thinking about Tommy for a minute. But it was then that her sister came downstairs.
She had darker hair too, and an oval face, very white now, making her brown eyes seem brighter. Brighter though more hollow. I will say she was beautiful. She wore only a rich blue lounging robe, which was figure-fitting though it came down past her heels and was clasped in a high collar around her pale throat. Marie got up wordlessly and pressed my hand, and smiled again, that faint imitation, and went off.
Ruth stood there in the doorway from the dining room and as though it was a signal — which I suspect it was — Duff Ryan got up. He looked at me fishily. I do say. Do you know what it is, Martin? A poor little kitten. The way he was saying that, and looking at me, put a chill up my back that made me suddenly ice cold.
I began to tremble all over. He opened the door and motioned for me to go out. That cat thing was a gag of some kind, I thought, and I was wide awake for any funny stuff from detectives, but Duff Ryan actually had a little kitten hidden in a box under the front steps of the house. He picked it up now and petted it. I gave it a shot of stuff that eased the pain for a while but it must be coming back.
There were no lights at all here and we walked in darkness, our feet scuffing on the dirt of the football gridiron. We want to do something to save Tommy. He threatened to use his cane on you? I wish I had thought of doing that sooner. But when you were going to school at Hadden, you took the goat, which was a class mascot, upstairs with you one night and then pushed him down the stairs so that he broke all his legs. He lit a cigarette, holding on to the crippled cat with one hand. It got caught on a piece of tin from the drain while I was pulling it up.
He dropped his cigarette, stepped on it, then patted the cat. Moonlight shone jaggedly through the rotting pillars. It was a state institution, I think. Sort of a rest home. I could see the funny twist of his smile there in the moonlight. His face looked pale and somehow far away. He looked at the cat and petted it some more.
I was still shaking. Scared, I guess. Then, all at once I thought he had gone mad. He swung the cat around and began batting its head against the pillar in the chapel. He kept on doing it and my temples began to pound. My heart went like wildfire. I wanted to reach over and help him. I wanted to take that little cat and squeeze the living guts out of it. I wanted to help him smash its brains all over the chapel. I felt dizzy. Everything was going around. I felt myself reaching for the cat.
I knew what he was doing. He was testing me. He wanted me to help him. Not Martin Thorpe. I put my arms behind me and grabbed my wrists and with all my might I held my arms there and looked the other way. I heard the cat drop with a thud to the cement, then I looked up, gasping to catch my breath. Duff Ryan looked at me with cool gray eyes, then he walked off. I stood there, still trying to get my breath and watching his shadow blend with the shadows of the dark study hall.
I was having one hell of a time getting my breath. But I slept good all night. Let him hang. He and Myers traded off duty every other day. I felt pretty cocky and got up putting on only my slippers and went down to the eleven-year-old wing. Pushton was sitting on the edge of the bed working his arms back and forth and yawning. The fat little punk looked like an old man. He took himself that seriously. You would have thought maybe he was a general.
They furnished bugles at school but they were awful and Pushton took his music so seriously that he had saved up and bought his own instrument. I looked under the bed, under his pillow, then I grabbed him by the nose. Where is it? I went back to my bed and held my ears. Pushton blew the bugle all right, I never did find out where he had the thing hidden.
I dressed thinking, well, only two more days and Tommy gets it. Time would go by and eventually she would forget him. Everything went swell Wednesday right through breakfast and until after we were marching out of the chapel and into the schoolroom. Then I ran into Pushton, who was trotting around with his bugle tucked under his arm. I stopped and looked him up and down. I was still burned up and sore at the guy when a lucky break came, for me, that is, not Pushton.
It was during the afternoon right after we had been dismissed from the classroom for the two-hour recreation period. I went into the main building, which was prohibited in the daytime so that I had to sneak in, to get a book I wanted to read. It was under my pillow. I slipped up the stairs, crept into my wing, got the book, and started out.
It was then that I heard a pounding noise. I walked in and there it was! At least that was the way I felt about it. For who was it but Pushton. There was a new radio set, a small portable, beside his bed. I saw that the wires and earphone — which you have to use in the dormitory—were connected with the adjoining bed as well and guessed that it belonged to another cadet.
But Pushton was hooking it up. He was leaning halfway out the window trying, pounding with a hammer, to make some kind of a connection on the aerial wire. Nothing could have been better. The window was six stories from the ground, with cement down below. No one knew I was in the building. I felt blood surge into my temples. My face got red, hot red, and I could feel fever throbbing in my throat. I moved forward slowly, on cat feet, my hands straight at my sides. But I was getting that dizzy feeling now.
My fingers were itching. Then suddenly I lunged over, I shoved against him. He looked back once, and that was what I wanted. He looked back for an instant, his fat face green with the most unholy fear I have ever seen. Then I gave him another shove and he was gone. Before he could call out, before he could say a word, he was gone, falling through the air! I risked jumping up on the bed so I could see him hit, and I did see him hit. Then I got down and straightened the bed and beat it out.
I ran down the stairs as fast as I could. More important, no one saw me. But when I was on the second floor I ran down the hall to the end and lifted the window. I jumped out here, landing squarely on my feet. I waited for a minute, then I circled the building from an opposite direction.
My heart was pounding inside me. It was difficult for me to breathe. I managed to get back to the play field through an indirect route. No one but myself had seen him fall. I was on the play field at least ten minutes, plenty long enough to establish myself as being there, before the cry went up.
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The kids went wild. We ran in packs to the scene. I stood there with the rest of them looking at what was left of Push-ton. His flesh was like a sack of water that had fallen and burst full of holes. The blood was splattered out in jagged streaks all around him.
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We stood around about five minutes, the rest of the kids and I, nobody saying anything. Then a faculty officer chased us away, and that was the last I saw of Pushton. What there was of it seemed to establish the fact that Pushton had been a thick-witted sort and had undoubtedly leaned out too far trying to fix the aerial wire and had fallen. I thought that that could have easily been the case, all right, and since I had hated the little punk I had no conscience about it. I had liked Tommy. That night study hall was converted into a little inquest meeting.
We were all herded into one big room and Major Clark talked to us as though we were a bunch of Boy Scouts. All the bloated donkey was worrying about was losing a few tuitions. Toward the end of the session Duff Ryan came in and nodded at me, and then sat down. He looked around at the kids, watched Major Clark a while, and then glanced back at me.
He kept doing that until we were dismissed. He made me nervous. I lay there, feeling comfortable in the bedclothes and half lazy, but feeling every minute that reveille would blast me out of my place. On rainy days we got to sleep an extra half-hour. I felt pretty good about this and put my hands behind my head there on the pillow and began thinking.
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They were pleasant, what you might call mellow, thoughts. A little thing like an extra half-hour in bed will do that. For Duff Ryan to prove Tommy was innocent after the hanging would only make him out a damn fool. I was glad it was raining. It would make it easier for me to lay low, to stay away from Marie until the final word came ….
That was what I thought in the morning, lying there in bed. But no. Seven-thirty that night Duff came over to the school in a slicker. He came into the study hall and got me. His eyes were wild. His face was strained. He jerked me out of the seat, then he took his hands off me as though he were ashamed.
Ruth had on a slicker too and was waiting there on the front porch. I could see her pretty face. It was pinched, sort of terrible. Her eyes were wild too. I nodded. Then I went in to see Marie. They helped a lot. Father was a friend of the Governor. There were letters from him, and there was some good reason why father stayed at home, when he was crazy about the war. I think this farm was what they called an Underground Station.
What I want to know is where the station was. Let's hunt," I said. So we took long sticks and began poking into the weeds. Then we moved the brush, and sure as you live, we found an old door with a big stone against it. I looked at Leon and he looked at me. He slid down the bank on one side, and I on the other, and we pushed at the stone. I thought we never would get it rolled away so we could open the door a crack, but when we did what we saw was most surprising.
There was a little room, dreadfully small, but a room. There was straw scattered over the floor, very deep on one side, where an old blanket showed that it had been a bed. Across the end there was a shelf. On it was a candlestick, with a half-burned candle in it, a pie pan with some mouldy crumbs, crusts, bones in it, and a tin can.
Leon picked up the can and looked in. I could see too. It had been used for water or coffee, as the plate had for food, once, but now it was stuffed full of money. I saw Leon pull some out and then shove it back, and he came to the door white as could be, shut it behind him and began to push at the stone. When we got it in place we put the brush over it, and fixed everything like it had been. At last Leon said: "That's the time we got into something not intended for us, and if father finds it out, we are in for a good thrashing.
Are you just a blubbering baby, or are you big enough to keep still? Must have made mother think we were on Deams' hill. Then we went on side by side. You can depend on a girl to see everything," groaned Leon. Now I never had been sick in bed, and from what I had seen of other people who were, I never wanted to be. The idea of being switched until it made me sick was too much for me.
I shut my mouth tight and I never opened it about the Station place. As we reached the maiden's-blush apple tree came another call, and it sounded pretty cross, I can tell you. Leon reached his hand. We were out of breath when we reached the back door. There stood the tub on the kitchen floor, the boiler on the stove, soap, towels, and clean clothing on chairs. Leon had his turn at having his ears washed first, because he could bathe himself while mother did my hair.
She said if she missed any she'd know where to find them. You told her you thought they were wild, of course. The minute the ducks struck the water they started right back down stream, and there was a big snake, and we had an awful time. We got wet trying to head them back, and then we didn't find all of them. Of course if I had known you were having trouble with the ducks! I think you had better go back and help them. You use the tub while I do Little Sister's hair. I almost hated Sunday, because of what had to be done to my hair on Saturday, to get ready for it.
All week it hung in two long braids that were brushed and arranged each morning. But on Saturday it had to be combed with a fine comb, oiled and rolled around strips of tin until Sunday morning. Mother did everything thoroughly. She raked that fine comb over our scalps until she almost raised the blood. She hadn't time to fool with tangles, and we had so much hair she didn't know what to do with all of it, anyway.
When she was busy talking she reached around too far and combed across our foreheads or raked the tip of an ear. But on Sunday morning we forgot all that, when we walked down the aisle with shining curls hanging below our waists. Mother was using the fine comb, when she looked up, and there stood Mrs. We could see at a glance that she was out of breath.
Freshett and bring her a drink. I want to do what's right by my children here or there," panted Mrs. Freshett, "and these men seemed to think the contrivance they was sellin' perfectly grand, an' like to be an aid to the soul's salvation. Nice as it seemed, an' convincin' as they talked, I couldn't get the consent of my mind to order, until I knowed if you was goin' to kiver your dead with the contraption. None of the rest of the neighbours seem over friendly to me, an' I've told Josiah many's the time, that I didn't care a rap if they wa'n't, so long as I had you.
Says I, 'Josiah, to my way of thinkin', she is top crust in this neighbourhood, and I'm on the safe side apin' her ways clost as possible. Josiah he says to me, 'Don't you be apin' nobody. Now I know what I know, well enough, but all I know is like to keep me an' my children in a log cabin an' on log cabin ways to the end of our time. You ain't even got the remains of the cabin you started in for a cow shed. She's a ridin' in a shinin' kerridge, 'stid of a spring wagon. She goes abroad dressed so's you men all stand starin' like cabbage heads. All hern go to church, an' Sunday-school, an' college, an' come out on the top of the heap.
She does jest what I'd like to if I knowed how. An' she ain't come-uppety one morsel. Them as want to call her kind 'Princess,' and encourage her in being more stuck up 'an she was born to be, can, but to my mind a Princess is a person who thinks of some one besides herself once in a while. Anyway, it was the grave-kivers I come about. They got from baby to six-footer sizes. They are cast iron like the bottom of a cook stove on the under side, but atop they are polished so they shine somethin' beautiful. You can get them in a solid piece, or with a hole in the centre about the size of a milk crock to set flowers through.
They come ten to the grave, an' they are mighty stylish lookin' things. I have been savin' all I could skimp from butter, an' eggs, to get Samantha a organ; but says I to her: 'You are gettin' all I can do for you every day; there lays your poor brother 'at ain't had a finger lifted for him since he was took so sudden he was gone before I knowed he was goin'. It was like this: All endurin' the war Henry an' me did the best we could without pa at home, but by the time it was over, Henry was most a man.
Seemed as if when he got home, his pa was all tired out and glad to set down an' rest, but Henry was afire to be up an' goin'. His pa filled him so full o' Grant, it was runnin' out of his ears. Come the second run the Gin'ral made, peered like Henry set out to 'lect him all by hisself. He wore every horse on the place out, ridin' to rallies.
Sometimes he was gone three days at a stretch. He'd git one place an' hear of a rally on ten miles or so furder, an' blest if he didn't ride plum acrost the state 'fore he got through with one trip. He set out in July, and he rid right straight through to November, nigh onto every day of his life. He got white, an' thin, an' narvous, from loss of sleep an' lack of food, an' his pa got restless, said Henry was takin' the 'lection more serious 'an he ever took the war. Last few days before votin' was cold an' raw an' Henry rid constant. Put me to bed an' kiver me warm. I forgot the sting in my eyes watching Mrs.
She was the largest woman I knew, and strong as most men. Her hair was black and glisteny, her eyes black, her cheeks red, her skin a clear, even dark tint. She was handsome, she was honest, and she was in earnest over everything. There was something about her, or her family, that had to be told in whispers, and some of the neighbours would have nothing to do with her.
But mother said Mrs. Freshett was doing the very best she knew, and for the sake of that, and of her children, anyone who wouldn't help her was not a Christian, and not to be a Christian was the very worst thing that could happen to you. I stared at her steadily. She talked straight along, so rapidly you scarcely could keep up with the words; you couldn't if you wanted to think about them any between.
There was not a quiver in her voice, but from her eyes there rolled, steadily, the biggest, roundest tears I ever saw. They ran down her cheeks, formed a stream in the first groove of her double chin, overflowed it, and dripped drop, drop, a drop at a time, on the breast of her stiffly starched calico dress, and from there shot to her knees.
He was speechifyin' to beat anythin' you ever heard. His pa said he was repeatin' what he'd heard said by every big stump speaker from Greeley to Logan. When he got so hoarse we couldn't tell what he said any more, he jest mouthed it, an' at last he dropped back and laid like he was pinned to the sheets, an' I thought he was restin', but 'twa'n't an hour 'til he was gone. Suddenly Mrs. Freshett lifted her apron, covered her face and sobbed until her broad shoulders shook. I couldn't 'a' stood it at all if I hadn't 'a' knowed he was saved. I well know my Henry went straight to Heaven.
Why Miss Stanton, he riz right up in bed at the last, and clear and strong he jest yelled it: 'Hurrah fur Grant! My mother's fingers tightened in my hair until I thought she would pull out a lot, and I could feel her knees stiffen. Leon just whooped. Mother sprang up and ran to the door. I never saw mother's face look so queer, but at last she said softly: "You were thinking of the grave cover for him? I heard you lost two when the scarlet fever was ragin' an' I'm goin' to do jest what you do. If you have kivers, I will. If you don't like them when you see how bright and shiny they are, I won't get any either.
Freshett," said my mother, wrapping a strand of hair around the tin so tight I slipped up my fingers to feel whether my neck wasn't like a buck-eye hull looks, and it was. I like the rain to fall on them, and the sun to shine, so that the grass and flowers will grow. If you are satisfied that the soul of Henry is safe in Heaven, that is all that is necessary. Laying a slab of iron on top of earth six feet above his body will make no difference to him.
If he is singing with the angels, by all means save your money for the organ. I was kind o' took with the idea; the things was so shiny and scilloped at the edges, peered like it was payin' considerable respect to the dead to kiver them that-a-way. The iron would soon rust and grow dreadfully ugly lying under winter snow. There is nothing at all in it, save a method to work on the feelings of the living, and get them to pay their money for something that wouldn't affect their dead a particle.
Mother stiffened and Leon slipped again. He could have more accidents than any boy I ever knew. But it was only a few minutes until he came to mother and gave her a Bible to mark the verses he had to learn to recite at Sunday-school next day. Mother couldn't take the time when she had company, so she asked if he weren't big enough to pick out ten proper verses and learn them by himself, and he said of course he was.
He took his Bible and he and May and I sat on the back steps and studied our verses. He and May were so big they had ten; but I had only two, and mine were not very long. Leon giggled half the time he was studying. I haven't found anything so very funny in the Bible. He took the book and heard May do hers until she had them perfectly, then he went and sat on the back fence with his book and studied as I never before had seen him.
Freshett stayed so long mother had no time to hear him, but he told her he had them all learned so he could repeat them without a mistake. Next morning mother was busy, so she had no time then. Father, Shelley, and I rode on the front seat, mother, May, and Sally on the back, while the boys started early and walked. When we reached the top of the hill, the road was lined with carriages, wagons, spring wagons, and saddle horses.
Father found a place for our team and we went down the walk between the hitching rack and the cemetery fence. Mother opened the gate and knelt beside two small graves covered with grass, shaded by yellow rose bushes, and marked with little white stones. She laid some flowers on each and wiped the dust from the carved letters with her handkerchief. The little sisters who had scarlet fever and whooping cough lay there.
Mother was still a minute and then she said softly: "'The Lord has given and the Lord has taken away. Blessed be the name of the Lord. She was very pale when she came to us, but her eyes were bright and she smiled as she put her arms around as many of us as she could reach. The Pryor girl is here. The Lord may be drawing her in His own way. It is for us to help Him by being kind and making her welcome. At the church door we parted and sat with our teachers, but for the first time as I went down the aisle I was not thinking of my linen dress, my patent leather slippers, and my pretty curls.
It suddenly seemed cheap to me to twist my hair when it was straight as a shingle, and cut my head on tin. If the Lord had wanted me to have curls, my hair would have been like Sally's. Seemed to me hers tried to see into what big soft curls it could roll. May said ours was so straight it bent back the other way. Anyway, I made up my mind to talk it over with father and always wear braids after that, if I could get him to coax mother to let me.
Our church was quite new and it was beautiful. All the casings were oiled wood, and the walls had just a little yellow in the last skin coating used to make them smooth, so they were a creamy colour, and the blinds were yellow. The windows were wide open and the wind drifted through, while the birds sang as much as they ever do in August, among the trees and bushes of the cemetery.
Every one had planted so many flowers of all kinds on the graves you could scent sweet odours. Often a big, black-striped, brown butterfly came sailing in through one of the windows, followed the draft across the room, and out of another. I was thinking something funny: it was about what the Princess had said of other people, and whether hers were worse. I looked at my father sitting in calm dignity in his Sunday suit and thought him quite as fine and handsome as mother did. Every Sabbath he wore the same suit, he sat in the same spot, he worshipped the Lord in his calm, earnest way.
The ministers changed, but father was as much a part of the service as the Bible on the desk or the communion table. I wondered if people said things about him, and if they did, what they were. I never had heard. Twisting in my seat, one by one I studied the faces on the men's side, and then the women. It was a mighty good-looking crowd. Some had finer clothes than others—that is always the way—but as a rule every one was clean, neat, and good to see.
From some you scarcely could turn away. There was Widow Fall. She was French, from Virginia, and she talked like little tinkly notes of music. I just loved to hear her, and she walked like high-up royalty. Her dress was always black, with white bands at the neck and sleeves, black rustly silk, and her eyes and hair were like the dress. There was a little red on her cheeks and lips, and her face was always grave until she saw you directly before her, and then she smiled the sweetest smile.
Maybe Sarah Hood was not pretty, but there was something about her lean face and shining eyes that made you look twice before you were sure of it, and by that time you had got so used to her, you liked her better as she was, and wouldn't have changed her for anything. Fritz had a pretty face and dresses and manners, and so did Hannah Dover, only she talked too much. So I studied them and remembered what the Princess had said, and I wondered if she heard some one say that Peter Justice beat his wife, or if she showed it in her face and manner.
She reminded me of a scared cowslip that had been cut and laid in the sun an hour. I don't know as that expresses it. Perhaps a flower couldn't look scared, but it could be wilted and faded. I wondered if she ever had bright hair, laughing eyes, and red in her lips and cheeks. She must have been pretty if she had. At last I reached my mother.
There was nothing scared or faded about her, and she was dreadfully sick too, once in a while since she had the fever. She was a little bit of a woman, coloured like a wild rose petal, face and body—a piece of pink porcelain Dutch, father said. She had brown eyes, hair like silk, and she always had three best dresses. There was one of alpaca or woollen, of black, gray or brown, and two silks. Always there was a fine rustly black one with a bonnet and mantle to match, and then a softer, finer one of either gold brown, like her hair, or dainty gray, like a dove's wing.
When these grew too old for fine use, she wore them to Sunday-school and had a fresh one for best. There was a new gray in her closet at home, so she put on the old brown to-day, and she was lovely in it. Usually the minister didn't come for church services until Sunday-school was half over, so the superintendent read a chapter, Daddy Debs prayed, and all of us stood up and sang: "Ring Out the Joy Bells.
Indiana Authors and Their Books
The secretary made his report, we sang another song, gathered the pennies, and each teacher took a class and talked over the lesson a few minutes. Then we repeated the verses we had committed to memory to our teachers; the member of each class who had learned the nicest texts, and knew them best, was selected to recite before the school. Beginning with the littlest people, we came to the big folks. Each one recited two texts until they reached the class above mine. We walked to the front, stood inside the altar, made a little bow, and the superintendent kept score.
I could see that mother appeared worried when Leon's name was called for his class, for she hadn't heard him, and she was afraid he would forget. Among the funny things about Leon was this: while you had to drive other boys of his age to recite, you almost had to hold him to keep him from it. Father said he was born for a politician or a preacher, if he would be good, and grow into the right kind of a man to do such responsible work.
Of course no one expected anything like that. You never knew what might happen when Leon did anything. He must have been about sixteen. He was a slender lad, having almost sandy hair, like his English grandfather. He wore a white ruffled shirt with a broad collar, and cuffs turning back over his black jacket, and his trousers fitted his slight legs closely.
The wind whipped his soft black tie a little and ruffled the light hair where it was longest and wavy above his forehead. Such a perfect picture of innocence you never saw. There was one part of him that couldn't be described any better than the way Mr. When he was fighting angry, and going to thrash Absalom Saunders or die trying, he was plain white and his eyes were like steel. Mother called him "Weiscope," half the time. I can only spell the way that sounds, but it means "white-head," and she always used that name when she loved him most.
There was not a sound in the church. You could almost hear the butterflies pass. Father looked down and laid his lower lip in folds with his fingers, like he did sometimes when it wouldn't behave to suit him.
Table of contents
Leon looked over the congregation easily and then fastened his eyes on Abram Saunders, the father of Absalom, and said reprovingly: "Give not sleep to thine eyes nor slumber to thine eyelids. Abram straightened up suddenly and blinked in astonishment, while father held fast to his lip. Leon shifted his gaze to Betsy Alton, who hadn't spoken to her next door neighbour in five years. The mild blue eyes travelled back to the men's side and settled on Isaac Thomas, a man too lazy to plow and sow land his father had left him.
They were not so mild, and the voice was touched with command: "Go to the ant, thou sluggard, consider her ways and be wise. Back came the eyes to the women's side and past all question looked straight at Hannah Dover. Again Leon's eyes crossed the aisle and he looked directly at the man whom everybody in the community called "Stiff-necked Johnny. Instantly after, "Nine," he recited straight at Laddie: "I made a covenant with mine eyes; why then should I think upon a maid?
Leon looked scared for the first time. He actually seemed to shiver. Maybe he realized at last that it was a pretty serious thing he was doing. When he spoke he said these words in the most surprised voice you ever heard: "I was almost in all evil in the midst of the congregation and assembly. Perhaps these words are in the Bible. They are not there to read the way Leon repeated them, for he put a short pause after the first name, and he glanced toward our father: "Jesus Christ, the SAME, yesterday, and to-day, and forever!
Then he soberly made a bow and walked to his seat. He took a step forward, knelt, laid his hands on the altar, closed his eyes and turned his face upward. Since we are reasoning creatures, it little matters in what form Thy truth comes to us; the essential thing is that we soften our hearts for its entrance, and grow in grace by its application. Tears of compassion such as our dear Saviour wept are in our eyes this morning as we plead with Thee to help us to apply these words to the betterment of this community.
Then father began to pray. If the Lord had been standing six feet in front of him, and his life had depended on what he said, he could have prayed no harder. Goodness knows how fathers remember. He began at "Jesus wept" and told about this sinful world and why He wept over it; then one at a time he took those other twelve verses and hammered them down where they belonged much harder than Leon ever could by merely looking at people. After that he prayed all around each one so fervently that those who had been hit the very worst cried aloud and said: "Amen! When he arose the tears were running down his cheeks, and before him stood Leon.
He was white as could be, but he spoke out loudly and clearly. Please every one forgive me. I didn't mean to offend any one. It happened through hunting short verses. All the short ones seemed to be like that, and they made me think——". He got no farther. Father must have been afraid of what he might say next.
He threw his arms around Leon's shoulders, drew him to the seat, and with the tears still rolling, he laughed as happily as you ever heard, and he cried: "'Sweeping through the Gates! You never heard such singing in your life. That was another wonderful thing. My father didn't know the notes. He couldn't sing; he said so himself. Neither could half the people there, yet all of them were singing at the tops of their voices, and I don't believe the angels in Heaven could make grander music. My father was leading:. The Widow Fall soared above all of them on the next line; her man was there, and maybe she was lonely and would have been glad to go to him:.
You wouldn't have been left out of that company for anything in all this world, and nothing else ever could make you want to go so badly as to hear every one sing, straight from the heart, a grand old song like that. It is no right way to have to sit and keep still, and pay other people money to sing about Heaven to you. No matter if you can't sing by note, if your heart and soul are full, until they are running over, so that you are forced to sing as those people did, whether you can or not, you are sure to be straight on the way to the Gates.
Before three lines were finished my father was keeping time like a choirmaster, his face all beaming with shining light; mother was rocking on her toes like a wood robin on a twig at twilight, and at the end of the chorus she cried "Glory! When she reached Betsy Alton she held her hand and led her down the aisle straight toward Rachel Brown.
When Rachel saw them coming she hurried to meet them, and they shook hands and were glad to make up as any two people you ever saw. It must have been perfectly dreadful to see a woman every day for five years, and not to give her a pie, when you felt sure yours were better than she could make, or loan her a new pattern, or tell her first who had a baby, or was married, or dead, or anything like that. It was no wonder they felt glad.
Mother came on, and as she passed me the verses were all finished and every one began talking and moving. Johnny Dover forgot his neck and shook hands too, and father pronounced the benediction. He always had to when the minister wasn't there, because he was ordained himself, and you didn't dare pronounce the benediction unless you were.
Every one began talking again, and wondering if the minister wouldn't come soon, and some one went out to see. There was mother standing only a few feet from the Princess, and I thought of something. I had seen it done often enough, but I never had tried it myself, yet I wanted to so badly, there was no time to think how scared I would be. I took mother's hand and led her a few steps farther and said: "Mother, this is my friend, Pamela Pryor. They know everything and they told me her father was busy"—I thought she wouldn't want me to tell that he was plain CROSS, where every one could hear, so I said "busy" for politeness—"and her mother not very strong, and that she was a good girl, and dreadfully lonesome.
Can't you do something, mother? Maybe you won't believe this, but it's quite true. My mother took the Princess' arm and led her to Sally and Shelley, and introduced her to all the girls. By the time the minister came and mother went back to her seat, she had forgotten all about the "indisposed" word she disliked, and as you live! She stood tall and straight, her eyes very bright, and her cheeks a little redder than usual, as she shook hands and said a few pleasant words that were like from a book, they fitted and were so right.
When mother asked her to dinner she said: "Thank you kindly. I should be glad to go, but my people expect me at home and they would be uneasy. Perhaps you would allow me to ride over some week day and become acquainted? Mother said she would be happy to have her, and Shelley said so too, but Sally was none too cordial. She had dark curls and pink cheeks herself, and every one had said she was the prettiest girl in the county before Shelley began to blossom out and show what she was going to be.
Sally never minded that, but when the Princess came she was a little taller, and her hair was a trifle longer, and heavier, and blacker, and her eyes were a little larger and darker, and where Sally had pink skin and red lips, the Princess was dark as olive, and her lips and cheeks were like red velvet. Anyway, the Princess had said she would come over; mother and Shelley had been decent to her, and Sally hadn't been exactly insulting. It would be a little more than you could expect for her to be wild about the Princess. I believe she was pleased over having been invited to dinner, and as she was a stranger she couldn't know that mother had what we called the "invitation habit.
I have seen her ask from fifteen to twenty in one trip down the aisle on Sunday morning. She wanted them to come too; the more who came, the better she liked it. If the hitching rack and barnyard were full on Sunday she just beamed. If the sermon pleased her, she invited more. That morning she was feeling so good she asked seventeen; and as she only had dressed six chickens—third table, backs and ham, for me as usual; but when the prospects were as now, I always managed to coax a few gizzards from Candace; she didn't dare give me livers—they were counted. Almost everyone in the church was the happiest that morning they had been in years.
When the preacher came, he breathed it from the air, and it worked on him so he preached the best sermon he ever had, and never knew that Leon made him do it. Maybe after all it's a good thing to tell people about their meanness and give them a stirring up once in a while. Lucy was home on a visit. She was bathing her baby and mother was sewing.
If he kisses her when he leaves, of course they are engaged. I heard this from the back steps. Neither mother nor Lucy knew I was there. I went in to see if they would let me take the baby. Of course they wouldn't! Mother took it herself. She was rocking, and softly singing my Dutch song that I loved best; I can't spell it, but it sounds like this:.
Once I asked mother to sing it in English, and she couldn't because it didn't rhyme that way and the words wouldn't fit the notes; it was just, "Trot, trot, trot, a boy rode a colt. The colt sprang aside; down went the boy in the dirt. Really, it was a very nice baby; I only said that because I wanted to hold it, and mother wouldn't give it up. I tried to coax May to the dam snake hunting, but she couldn't go, so I had to amuse myself. I had a doll, but I never played with it except when I was dressed up on Sunday. Anyway, what's the use of a doll when there's a live baby in the house?
I didn't care much for my playhouse since I had seen one so much finer that Laddie had made for the Princess. Of course I knew moss wouldn't take root in our orchard as it did in the woods, neither would willow cuttings or the red flowers. Finally, I decided to go hunting. I went into the garden and gathered every ripe touch-me-not pod I could find, and all the portulaca. Then I stripped the tiger lilies of each little black ball at the bases of the leaves, and took all the four o'clock seed there was. Then I got my biggest alder popgun and started up the road toward Sarah Hood's. I was going along singing a little verse; it wasn't Dutch either; the old baby could have that if it wanted it.
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Soon as I got from sight of the house I made a powderhorn of a curled leaf, loaded my gun with portulaca powder, rammed in a tiger lily bullet, laid the weapon across my shoulder, and stepped high and lightly as Laddie does when he's in the Big Woods hunting for squirrel. It must have been my own singing—I am rather good at hearing things, but I never noticed a sound that time, until a voice like a rusty saw said: "Good morning, Nimrod!
I sprang from the soft dust and landed among the dog fennel of a fence corner, in a flying leap. Then I looked. It was the Princess' father, tall, and gray, and grim, riding a big black horse that seemed as if it had been curried with the fine comb and brushed with the grease rag. You always must answer politely any one who speaks to you; and you get soundly thrashed, at least at our house, if you don't be politest of all to an older person especially with white hair.
Father is extremely particular about white hair. It is a "crown of glory," when it is found in the way of the Lord. Mahlon Pryor had enough crown of glory for three men, but maybe his wasn't exactly glory, because he wasn't in the way of the Lord. He was in a way of his own. He must have had much confidence in himself. At our house we would rather trust in the Lord.
I only told him about the lions and tigers because he asked me, and that was the way I played. But you should have heard him laugh. You wouldn't have supposed to see him that he could. Just how to you bring down your prey? Won't you take me with you to the jungle? I didn't want him in the least, but if any one older asks right out to go with you, what can you do? I am going to tell several things you won't believe, and this is one of them: He got off his horse, tied it to the fence, and climbed over after me.
He went on asking questions and of course I had to tell him. Most of what he wanted to know, his people should have taught him before he was ten years old, but father says they do things differently in England. You see that little dark bag nearly as big as your fist, swinging out there on that limb? Well, every spring one of these birds, yellow as orange peel, with velvet black wings, weaves a nest like that, and over on that big branch, high up, one just as bright red as the other is yellow, and the same black wings, builds a cradle for his babies.
Father says a red bird and a yellow one keeping house in the same tree is the biggest thing that ever happened in our family. They come every year and that is their tree. I believe father would shoot any one who drove them away. Yes sir, my father can shoot if he wants to, better than any of our family except Laddie.
Mahlon Pryor sat on the bank of our Little Creek, took off his hat and shook back his hair as if the wind felt good on his forehead. I fished Dick Oglesby from the ammunition in my apron pocket, and held him toward the cross old man, and he wasn't cross at all. It's funny how you come to get such wrong ideas about people.