THE WILD BEES' HOME. Wild bees of the wood are we;But our hive you must not see:Here behold our happy home,Where we labor, where we roam.Brooks that on their shining bosomsCatch the overhanging blossoms;Banks all bright with clustering flowers,—Here is where we pass our hours.Seldom on this solitudeDoes a girl or boy intrude;Few among you are awareWhat a home is ours, so fair!In the brook are little fish;You would like them on a dish:Keep away, and bring no hooksTo these happy, murmuring brooks.You would like to find our hoardOf honey-comb and honey stored;You would track us, if you could,Through the field, and through the wood,Till, within some hollow tree,You our waxen cells could see.But beware now what you do;Treat us well, and we'll treat you. Dora Burnside. PERCY AND THE OXEN.
Summer came, and the city streets were dry, dusty, and noisy, and the bricks made everybody's eyes ache.
So mamma took little Percy, who was only three years old, and the rosy, fat one-year-old baby, and went away in the steam cars to the green, fresh, cool, sunny country. Grandpa was left all alone in the still city home, with good old 'Titia to keep house for him until the family should come back in the fall.
Well, those who could go to the country had just as much fun as they could wish for,—sitting out under the trees all the sunny days, and in the barn, when the sun was too hot for them to want him to shine on them.
One day, great-aunt Hannah was giving her nephews and nieces a dinner of corn and beans, and apples and cream, and nice bread and butter, and they all sat at the table a long time, talking and laughing, and enjoying themselves.
All at once little mamma said, "Why, where's Percy?" and sprang up, and ran to the side-door, which opened on to the green.
No Percy was to be seen there: so all began to hunt through the sitting-room, even through the parlor (where he never played), out in the kitchen, farther out through the long wood-shed, still farther out in the carriage-house; but he was in none of these places.
Then great-aunt Hannah opened the cupboards, and pulled out the drawers, as though she expected to find the "grand-boy" rolled up in a napkin, and tucked away in a corner.
There was a high state of flutter when mamma peeped round the edge of the open dining-room door, and said, "Come with me."
She was so smiling, that every one knew the search was up; and a row of tall people and short people, headed by little mamma, and ended by tall aunt Hannah, streamed out and over the green, across the road. There they were stopped, and told by mamma to go softly and look in one of the barn-windows.
What did they see? A good load of sweet-scented hay piled on a wide hay-cart, two big oxen yoked to that, standing in the middle of the barn-floor, with their two great heads held down very low.
In front of them was little chubby Percy, in his clean white frock, swinging a tiny pail, that would hold a teaspoonful of berries, in one hand, and with the other holding out a berry to the oxen, as they put their great mouths down to be fed....