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unpretentious, seemly, silent, the men and of the burying-ground of the Friends. women of two centuries.
They hesitated for a time, then drew Line, color, the pomp of fretted stone, nearer to the old, gray wall of stone. They the voice of music, the sounds of ceremony looked over into the plot where so long and of form, may call others to the gath- the Friends had buried their dead, an anerings of this or that religion in different cient greensward, scarce upheaved even by corners of the world; but these worship- the more recent mounds. The letters of ers, silent and gray, came now to a silent, the small, gray sandstone slabs, unchanggray, unornamented household of spiritual ing monuments of the Society of Friends, appeal alone. Almost it seemed as if the were in some cases almost obliterated by old meeting-house must have grown quietly the years. Close observation might have and gently, without sound of discordant informed the curious that here lay dead, at hammer or scrape of trowel, certainly this or that day, of this or that numbered without accompaniment of song, later to month of the two centuries ago, Isaac or be tenanted by those who worship in si- William or Joseph or Mary or Elizabeth lence in a faith austerely shorn of all for- or Rachel, born at such a numbered, not mality.
named, time of the calendar, long, long As they entered, they found places upon ago. Once in a while some one had cut that side of the meeting-house always ac- the grass here. Against the trunks of one corded to their sex, which might not min- or two trees leaned certain gray headgle with the men of the congregation, al- stones done in ancient, scrawling script, though no man had been seen here for by accident detached from their proper many years. Empty as the little church places, and now never properly to be rewas, it did not sound empty, as do certain placed. other tenantless rooms.
In the soft harmony of this scene was Here, now, before the congregation of one discordant note. Leaning against the three, was no priest or minister, nor had angle at the corner of the wall, so highly there ever been. There was no lip service polished that the rays of the sun were rehere. This spot demanded only the devotion flected from its spotless sides, there reof the heart. These three, following the clined a shaft of white marble, evidently custom of their creed, now sat with heads the work of modern hands. In the inbowed slightly, each with her hands folded scriptions on the gravestones of the in her lap. There were no books of song or
Friends the record of birth and death was of prayer. Music had never been known to held sufficient; and all folk were held even them. Worship was unsoftened in any and alike in the eyes of the Lord. All way. Unsoftened, did we say ? Could these lay in a democracy of death. No that be, when there were present these gravestone taller than two feet above the dove-colored figures, gentle, faithful, rev- grass had ever been erected here. But erent? These being here, how softly radi- here was a pretentious monument four or ant seemed all this calm interior!
five feet high at least. It was slender, At last, after an hour unbroken by any
and well executed in its way, done in the cough, shuffling, or movement due to un- shape of a broken lily. At the base of the regulated nerves, Aunt Mary Alice arose, stone, well carved, was an inscription: turned to Miss Lucy Maxwell, and shook her by the hand. They both shook Cousin
Sacred to the Memory of Henrietta, BelovMary Ellen by the hand. Then without
ed Wife of Hiram Farwell, who Departed this word, the services being thus concluded,
Life June 21, 19-, A Loving Wife, a they turned toward the door. Without
Gentle Soul. This Shaft, Typical of Her much deviation, this had been their cus
Purity and Innocence, is Erected by Her tom on Fourth-Day noon every week of
Sorrowing Husband. Pity His Grief, and the year for
many years. They were old Model your Life upon Hers, thus Untimely ladies now, only one of them less than Ended.
As they now turned their steps down There were two dates, following the the little stoop, they glanced across, as fashion of our calendar, not that of the they often did, to catch the peaceful pic- Friends. The wife had been very young ture of the sun and the grass and the trees
at the time of her death; but there had
gone with her one yet younger. Below “But the child's mother - look at that the lettering of the main inscription was inscription!" another, simple and impersonal. It bore "She died not having knowledge of her no dates, but two dashes, and read, “In- child. Neither lived. They should not fant Son of Henrietta and Hiram Far- be separated now. And, besides, I knew well." Below this was the supplication, Henrietta Doane as well as any of thee. 'God be Merciful to Us All!”
She was white as the lily itself, as good "Thee knows," said Aunt Mary Alice, and sinless. What worldliness is there in turning to her companions at length, calling her 'Beloved' before God? Be“that I loved Henrietta as my own sister. sides, the Society of Friends is not what But now look at this. Tch! tch! To once it was." think of such vanity and worldliness as Aunt Mary Alice's ire arose.
“Let this, here in the Friends' burying-ground !" Hiram Farwell raise this monument in his
The others at first made no comment. own yard, if he likes, but not here, where It seemed understood that the subject was for two hundred years the brothers and not altogether new. It was Miss Lucy sisters have lain down in peace. As they Maxwell who at last ventured a word. lived plain, so they lie plain there; so they
“But there was- thee very well knows, will arise plain before the Lord." Aunt Mar' Alice — there was the baby." But the soft voice of the other rejoined: Her eyes, brown and gentle, sought the "If Hiram Farwell forgot all the ways of kindly face of Cousin Mary Ellen. The the Friends, at least he has not forgotten latter nodded slowly.
the wife that he found here among us “Pride of the flesh,” rejoined the elder Friends; and neither has he forgotten her woman, promptly, with a sniff, almost a little child. He could have had a much snort. “Vanity. Yes, indeed; thee needs more worldly gravestone than this. It only go to Balt'mer or to Washington to
says, 'Beloved.' see in the burying-grounds gravestones Her gentle protest did not convince the very much larger than any of these. But other sister in the church. “Lucy Maxwhat of the reckoning before the Lord well, I say thee grieves me, that thee does. when the dead shall rise ? I ask thee that, Such words of stubbornness-it is not now, Lucy Maxwell; and I ask thee, seemly in thee.
seemly in thee. Thee raises thy will Cousin Mar' Ellen."
against the ways of the Lord and against "Does the Lord on high judge between the custom of the Society of Friends. the colors on gravestones, Aunt Mar' Thee must have more care, Lucy MaxAlice?" demanded Miss Lucy Maxwell well.” with rising courage.
“This is so white The slender figure opposite her stiffand plain, it seems to have no pomp about ened into lines as rigid as her own. The it. “Beloved !'"
pink in the face of the younger saint deep"The Lord's face is set against vanity, ened yet more, schooled though she was to that thee well knows, Lucy Maxwell," meekness and consent. answered Aunt Mary Alice. “Henrietta “What does thee mean, then, Lucy Doane, either before or after her mar- Maxwell?” cried Aunt Mary Alice, horriage, did not vaunt herself above her rified. neighbors. Why should the husband vaunt “Only this, Aunt Mar' Alice: if we do for her? See now, if this marble were set not agree, then how can we sit together up there in our burying-ground, it would in the meeting-house? There are Hickshow distinct from all the others. Such site Friends, as thee knows, and others, pridefulness has never been known in this the Orthodox Friends, as thee knows; yet valley. And that thee both knows very both societies are sincere, and that is the
test. If I am sincere, how can I sit in thy Miss Lucy Maxwell spoke almost as company in the meeting-house, saying all though she had not heard when presently the time in my heart: 'Aunt Mar' Alice, she resumed:
thee is wrong. Thee is wrong'?" "That little babe - that little, little “But it is thee that is wrong, Lucy child! Thee sees, Aunt Mar' Alice, it Maxwell,” broke out the other. “Thee never knew its mother. It could not would end the society here in Warsenvaunt itself overmuch."
ford, that is what thee would do. But
thee would come, Cousin Mar' Ellen; knew no Fourth-Day opening. The robins that I know, at least."
and the bees were there, the sun lay as yelShe was not prepared for the reply low on the purple mantle of the blue grass. which met her. Cousin Mary Ellen, The church itself, gray, silent, self-effachabitually silent even beyond the habit of ing, stood as of old, and in the corner of the Friends, now surprised even herself. the old, gray wall there reclined the slen
“I feel to speak to thee, Aunt Mar' der headstone with its white, broken lily. Alice," she began. “We should sit there Warrenford was stunned, and for weeks only in harmony, as Friends."
remained so. "But thee knows I am right," inter- Now, as this pathetic confusion of faith rupted the older woman.
had arisen by reason of argument over a "It may be, Aunt Mar' Alice. We little child, what more fitting than that a have sat with thee many years. But I am little child should in turn lead all these thinking of that little child.”
perturbed ones out of their confusion? It was schism. After these many years, Somewhere it was written thus, and by elements other than those of time were Some One that mission was given to Dorocoming into these gray and quiet lives. thy, child and grandchild of Quaker parThe older woman drew herself up, tall ents, almost the only child or grandchild and stern, somber in her frowning rebuke. in all Warrenford. The others faced her as stoutly as did Dorothy made not wholly a Quaker ever Hicksite face Orthodox or Orthodox portrait that evening in late summer when face Church of England. All were silent she escaped from her guardians and ran for a time, and silence lay all about them. off up the curving road toward the top of The bees droned on upon their errands, a the hill. Her frock was short, but sophisrobin chirped in the oak beyond; but that ticated, her hat a bright red, her little was all. The sun shone warm and kind, coat also red. Dorothy was eight, and acted flecking the dark green of the grass in it. It would be well-nigh impossible for golden bars beneath the boughs of the so bright a figure to pass on the deserted oaks.
street unobserved, even were not Dorothy Slow, gray, sad, their heads bowed, the known to all Warrenford, observed by three passed, but spoke no more.
Side by most who dwelt there, and loved as well. side they turned and walked slowly down It was quite natural that Aunt Mary the hill. Aunt Mary Alice did not ex- Alice, passing at the foot of the street, tend her hand and say, in the fashion of should catch sight of Dorothy as she ran the Friends, "Farewell," at Miss Lucy off up the hill. Now, since there was once Maxwell's gate, but stalked on down the one automobile on that hill, Warrenford street, her face turned squarely away from
dwelt in fear that there might some day the other two, who tarried. Cousin Mary be another. If this should be while DoroEllen, however, turned back even as she thy was there alone! Aunt Mary Alice
hurried her elderly steps. “Thee sees Lucy Maxwell,” she began.
But when she made the upper turn of "It is a question of tongue.
the road and came in view of the open tongues, and in dialects of those tongues, space about the meeting-house, Dorothy as thee well knows, Lucy Maxwell, and was not to be seen. From the interior of as Aunt Mar' Alice should know also, I the meeting-house there came the sound of may say, 'Beloved.' If only Hiram Far- happy, childish song, the first, perhaps, well had had it made in gray, I would ever heard within those gray walls. Doroagree with thee entirely, yes, Lucy Max- thy, finding the door unlocked, had gone well. But if we may not sit in harmony, upon a journey of exploration,
Aunt I also agree with thee; then let us part Mary Alice also passed within the door. and go our ways."
Now it chanced that Cousin Mary And so indeed it came to pass. On next
Ellen was headed for the grocery store to Fourth-Day noon, the three doors failed to buy some allspice for the making of her frame their plain-garbed figures. For the watermelon-rind preserves, when all at first time in nearly two hundred years, as
once she saw Aunt Mary Alice passing best tradition has it, the weathered door along the curved road well toward the of the Little Stone Church of Warrenford top of the hill where lay the meeting
left the little gate.
house. Not having seen Dorothy, Cousin pushed open the door, and how Miss Lucy Mary Ellen could assign only one reason Maxwell found them both when she also for this act of Aunt Mary Alice: the timidly pushed open the door. The three latter was going alone to the meeting- looked at one another; and as they looked, house! Now, that must not be. Were Dorothy ceased her prattle, and gazed in they not sisters, after all ?
turn from one to another of the Society It chanced also that Miss Lucy Max- of Friends. Quietly, as of yore, the three well, who was attending her fower-beds sank into seats. Silence remained upon near the gate at the end of the little brick them all for some time. At length one of walk, looked down the street just as them rose, moved by the Spirit to say Cousin Mary Ellen turned out of sight at some word. the entrance of the curving road. A sud- But which one of the three it was who den Aush of hesitation, of resolution, came rose, or what was said, I do not know. upon Miss Lucy Maxwell's face. Cousin All I know is that when they came out of Mary Ellen must be going alone to the the door somewhat later their arms were meeting-house. Ah, were they not sisters, about one another and their eyes were wet. after all? Miss Lucy Maxwell turned The red hat and coat of Dorothy showed into the house and emerged an instant very plainly against their quiet, dove-collater, tying the strings of her dove-colored ored garb as they passed down the old bonnet. Her feet flew up the hill faster steps. When they turned into the curving than ever they had before.
road, each of them had a hand for DoroSo this is how Cousin Mary Ellen thy, Defender of the Faith. The Society found Aunt Mary Alice when she timidly of Friends was quite at peace.
THE RED SENTRY
BY HERMAN SCHEFFAUER
ED sentry in my breast,
Sleep for I have need rest,
The bird knows nesting-time;
Bells, too, must halt their chime. Why dost thou urge thy clamor
Within these walls of Aesh?
Destroys, then builds afresh.
The vigil that I keep
To quire through the land;
Toll to the ringer's hand.
Vy fountain in the dark
Life's throned and templed spark.