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Dr. C. In a common incubator.
CLARA. O doctor, do not say it! It didn't have pinfeathers ?
Dr. C. Alas, no! for then it could be shaved. The poor child lived for two months in the sawdust arms of its artificial nurse.
CLARA. My Roysterous brought up in a chicken incubator:
DR. C. Yes, it lived and thrived and finally grew up, but ever since it left that incubator a dreadful incubus has rested on its life.
Clara. I cannot marry the poor young man in his present sad state; it would kill me, and I shall die if I don't marry him. Tell me what to do.
Dr. C. (after meditating a moment.) I have it. It's clear Mr. Jones had no natural babyhood.
Clara. Yes. I've heard that chickens raised in incubators are always sad birds.
Dr. C. It's plain his babyhood must be restored to him, Clara. Restore his lost babyhood ?
Dr. C. Certainly. He must learn to play. You must give him a rattle and teach him to play with it.
CLARA. And a jumping-jack?
DR. C. Yes, and teach him cat's cradle and all will be well. (Starts off.) Now I must go to your poor mother.
Clara. Thank you, doctor, for your advice. I will get pome toys and play with Mr. Jones the next time he calls.
DR. C. Make him a baby again just for one night. [Exit.
Clara. Dear little Roysterous. How I shall love him as a baby. It shall have its little jumping-jack and its little rattle. Let me see. My little cousin Dottie must have some toys in Aunt Jane's room. (A bell heard to ring twice outside.) There he is now. Dear Roysterous always rings twice to let the other people in the house know he has come to call on
It saves interruptions. I'll go right up to Aunt Jane's room and borrow some of Dottie's toys, and then I will come down and play with the dear little man. [Exit Clara.
Enter Dr. Cocaine, followed by Mrs. Roberts, at left. DR. C. I remember the boy perfectly. He lost his natural babyhood.
MRS. R. And poor Clara knows just what to do?
DR. C. Yes. I told her she must teach himn to play. He must be a baby or he will never smile again.
Mrs. R. We will follow your advice, doctor. I heard the young man's ring just now. You will meet him in the hall as you go out and see what a sad wreck he is.
Dr. C. No doubt he'll laugh heartily as soon as you show him the delights of his lost babyhood. [Bows and exit.
Mrs. R. (sitting down.) How sad! how sad! (Sobs.) Never to know the solemn joy of being a baby! (Sobs.) Never to crow in glee. (With motion of tossing a child in her arms.) Never to be tossed in the air. (With motion of riding a child on her foot.) Never to ride cock horse to Banbury Cross. (Sobs.) Never to enjoy the measles-or the mumps. (With motion of dancing a child on her knee.) Never to be danced on parent knee. Enter Clara in haste, at right, with a child's rattle, a jumping-jack,
and a piece of white string. CLARA. I had just time to get these things. Dear Roysterous is coming upstairs now. I mean to play with him. You take that (giving her the string); it's for cat’s cradle.
Mrs. R. You are a brave girl. (Rising.) I, too, will play with him. Let us begin with the little pigs that went to market.
CLARA. How can we, mother? Mr. Jones would never take off his boots.
Mrs. R. How silly you are, Clara. We will play with his dear little fingers.
Clara. So we will. And how he will smile when he sees this jumping-jack. (Moves down.)
Enter Mr. Jones, at right, behind Clara. MR. JONES (offering hand to Mrs. Roberts). Good afternoon, Mrs. Roberts. I trust I find you in good health ? Mrs. R. Thank you. I'm enjoying my usual light catarrh.
Clara laughs. MR. J. Good afternoon, Clara. I'm surprised you laugh. Your mother's remark was curious, but not at all funny, Many people are so constituted that they really enjoy a light catarrh. I knew a man who said he wouldn't eat ice cream if he knew it would kill him. (Clara laughs.) I don't see why you laugh. Of course, if the man knew the ice cream would kill him, he would be very unwise to eat it. I'm sure I wouldn't.
Mrs. R. My dear, Mr. Jones. We were not all brought up in an incubator,
Mr. J. (to Mrs. R.) I don't see what that has to do with it. If the ice cream was explosive, the man's remark was quite proper. I said the man said he wouldn't touch another plate of ice cream-he had eaten nine already—if he knew it would kill him. (To Claru.) And I'm surprised you laugh at that.
Mrs. R. (taking his hand.) My son, it is plain your education has been neglected. (Begins to count his fingers.) This little pig went to market, and this little pig staid at home.
MR. J. (pulling his hand away.) Mrs. Roberts! you surprise me!
Clara (showing him the rattle). Did the poor ittle sing miss its baby rattle? (Trying to put it in his hand.) Take its ittle rattle and play with it.
Mrs. R. (making cat's cradle with the string and showing it to Mr. Jones.) See its grandmuzzer make pretty cat's cradle? Can baby do that?
CLARA (working the jumping-jack). See the funny jumpingjack? Did baby want to play with it?
Mrs. R. Perhaps baby wants to ridy ridy with grandmuzzer, and see the wheels go roundy poundy ?
MR. J. (aside, looking from one to the other.) Poor women! They both love me and it's turned their heads. (Clara works the jack and shakes the rattle. Mr. Jones watches her for awhile, then says :) Clara! you're a little goose!
CLARA (throwing the toys down in anger). Roysterous Peculiar Jones! You're a spiteful thing! (Sobs.) Only yesterday you called me (sobs)—a duck (sobs)—and now-you call me a (sobs)—a goose. (Starting off.) I hate you! there!
[Exit Clara in a pet, at right. MR. J. What does this mean, ma'am ? Do you take me for a baby.
Mrs. R. You have insulted my daughter, sir. You called her a goose. I shall retire, sir, and decline to receive you in my house again till you apologize. A goose, indeed! Next you'll be calling me a gander--no, I mean you'll call me an elderly female goose. I bid you good-evening, sir.
[Exit Mrs. R., at left. MR. J. (looking from one door to the other.) Well! I must say! They're a couple of lunatics. Do they take me for a baby? No. I was an infant at one time, but a real crowing baby, alas! never. (Looks at toys.) Stay! There is a deep significance in these things. (Picks up toys.) Perhaps Clara was right. Bless her dear heart. She only wanted to make a baby of me. (Looks from one toy to the other.) Which is the most interesting ? (Clara enters, unperceived, and looks on. He shakes the rattle.) How sweetly gay! (Works tho jack.) Its airy gambols fill me with a strange delight. If I could only watch its playful antics long enough-I should smile.
CLARA (aside). Dear little man ! He will soon learn to play.
MR. J. Ah! Stay a moment. I have an idea.
Because (laughs) -- because (laughs louder) — be
Clara (embracing him). Saved! Saved at last !
MR. J. (working the toy and smiling broadly.) My poor starved brain yields to these soothing charms. I've forgotten the answer, but it was quite funny.
CLARA. Never mind the answer, love. You have learned to smile, and it's plain you're quite a baby.
NOTE.-An excellent prose reading by the author of the above will be found in “One Hundred Choice Selections No. 21," entitled “THE TELEGRAPHIC SIGNAL." Another in No. 24, entitled, “Pur YOURSELF IN HIS PLACE.” Both of those articles originally appeared in Scribner's Magazine.
THE BRIDAL WINE CUP.*
SCENE.-A handsomely furnished parlor; a bridal company as
sembled; bridegroom and bride and Judge Harvey, father of the bride. On a marble table are standing decanters and glasses of wine, which are being distributed to the guests. The bride should be beautifully attired in white, and the appearance of the whole company imposing. GUESTS. Pledge with wine! Pledge with wine!
JUDGE HARVEY (in a low tone, advancing toward his daughter). Yes, Marion, lay aside your scruples for once; the
company expect it. Do not so seriously infringe upon the rules of etiquette. In your own home act as you please; but in mine, for this once, please me.
Every eye turns toward the bride. BRIDE (smilingly accepting a brimming beaker, and raising it to her lips; then, suddenly starting back, with a piercing voice, exclaims :). Oh, how terrible!
GUESTS (in alarm). What is it? What can it be?
BRIDE (holding the glass from her and regarding it with horror). Wait! Wait! I will tell you ! I see (pointing her jeweled finger at the wine) a sight that beggars descriptionand yet listen, I will paint it for you if I can. It is a lonely spot,-tall mountains, crowned with verdure, rise in awful sublimity around; a river runs through, and bright flowers grow on the water's edge. There is a thick, warm mist, that the sun seeks vainly to pierce. Trees, lofty and beautiful, wave to the airy motion of the birds; but there a
*From “ Excelsior Dialogues," which contains a pleasing variety of original material (for advanced speakers only), combining humor, tragedy, and satire, in Emple profusion. It has over a score of bright, sparkling plavs, representing familiar scenes and ludicrous situations, arranged especially for easy presentation in the School-rvon or Lyceum Hall. 376 pages, cloth, price $1.00.
Dramatic Supplement No. 8 is composed entirely of Temperance matter, con. taining six different artieles, including a fine melodrama, by Geo. M. Vickers. No. 16 is especially for Sabbath-Schools, and has also a Temperance play. In fact, the whole list has a generous share of moral and religious instruction, notwithstanding the great abundance of the light and joyous, -as found in the Comedies, Farces, Operettas, etc. Send for Catalogue.