Little bird! you had better let that cannon alone; I am afraid you will soon fall by its side. But what are you firing at? You don’t mean to let us see; never mind—only be sure that you don’t kill yourself, nor any body else.
Can it be that you are doing all that for play? If so, you must be very fond of fire-works. But you hardly look cross enough to kill any body.
If you do such a thing, you know what must be done; you will either be hung, or put in prison for life: but they don’t hang much, now-a-days; so, perhaps, they will only shut you up.
Little bird, little bird, what are you doing?—“Firing my cannon, to kill Robin Redbreast;”
Naughty bird, naughty bird, why will you do it?“Because he has stolen the eggs from my nest.”
What is that? A bird’s funeral? So it seems, for the bird in the wheelbarrow certainly appears to be dead, and another one is wheeling him to the grave; or perhaps he found him dead, and is going now to carry him home. But what is that bird, with a cap on, doing? Did he shoot the poor bird? He has a gun; but I should hardly think he would follow his neighbor to the grave, if he was his murderer.
Tell me, children, if you can, how it was, and who did it, for it looks like a sad affair. Do people ever get into such kinds of trouble? They often die, and too often kill each other. Learn a lesson from this, never to get angry, lest you some day kill your fellow-creature.
Little Amelia was told, one beautiful spring morning, that she might take her bird into the yard. She had not been out of doors for a long time, so that she was very much delighted with the prospect of playing freely in the open air. She had no brother, or sisters, but she loved this bird almost as well as herself, and never seemed to be lonely with his company. She carried her little round table out upon the green, and placed the cage upon it, so that little Jess might breathe the fresh air, and see the sunshine and flowers once more.
See her stretching out her hand to feed it; then she will bound away to the other end of the yard; the more she frolics, the louder will Jess sing. So they will both enjoy themselves in the bright sunshine, till school begins.
But, what kind of a horse is that? Oh! it is a dog! Just hear Fred talk to him.—Go along, Bright, he says.
Bright must be a smart dog, to carry a boy six years old, all over the farm. Freddy’s father owns that house. You see a large green in front—a fine playground for Fred. He ought to be a very grateful boy, to have so nice a home.
Just see how steadily Bright carries him along, in his fine carriage. That was a present from his father.
I hope Fred will always be a good boy; and that, when he grows older, he will be able to repay his father for all these good things. Little boys should always remember how much they owe to their parents, and try to please them in every thing.
Speak, if you want it; you won’t get it till you do. Why don’t you mind me? Speak, I say. So said Joseph Mecklem to his dog, which he keeps all the while chained to his kennel. Growler is a fine hunter, and a good watch-dog. His master is giving him lessons every day; he calls them his eating and talking lessons.
Growler seems to be very happy, though he is kept close. He barks and growls, in the night, at every little noise he hears, and will not allow any body to come near the house. Strange that Growler can be so contented; he is better than some boys, who cry because they have to sit still, on a bench, a few hours every day, to study. How would they feel, to be always chained to the bench, as Growler is to his kennel?
Those dogs both live in one house, and have the same master, who is very fond of them, and has trained them to work together; and, when one is sent on an errand, the other always goes too. They are now standing at the door of the school-room, waiting for their master’s children to come out. Jane and Ellen are very young, and would not know how to go and come, without the company of the dogs. They love Carlo and Shag, and are never afraid when they are with them. You see the teacher standing at the door; he wants to know the errand of the dogs. How earnestly they look up at him, as if telling him what they have come for; and Shag has lifted his foot to step on the door-stone. They start off for school so regularly, every day, that it is quite surprising.
Oh! Mother! just look at this picture. Is that boy dead, or only asleep. I think, my child, that he is numb with cold. He has lost his hat, and looks helpless and sad. But this good dog has found him, and is going to carry him home.
Mother, where did he find the boy? On the ground, Sarah. You see, in the picture, that the snow-flakes are falling as though there were a great storm. The boy was out on an errand, when the snow fell so thick and fast that he lost his way; then he grew cold and fell into the snow.
If this dog had not taken him up, he would soon have died.
Oh! mother, what a dear good dog; I should think the boy would want to keep him, for his own dog, as long as he lives.
I’d never hurt my little dog, But stroke and pat his head; I like to see the joy he shows, I like to see him fed.
Poor little dog—he’s very good, And very useful, too, I’ll never vex or tease him, then, As children sometimes do.
But I will give him milk to drink, A fire to make him warm, A bed to lie on, when he sleeps, And keep him from all harm.
And when I need a kindness done, Perhaps, some future day, Like these good dogs we’ve read about My labor he’ll repay.