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Day 57
The Death of Lars Porsena

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  The waters of the brook lap and lap. They come in little ripples over gray stones. They are rippling a song. It is a gentle song. It is a good-bye song to Lars Porsena of Clusium . The time now is when there is no Lars Porsena of Clusium. It was only on yesterday. It was near eventime , when the mamma was gone to the house of her mother. I was making a go across the corn field to see the tree-folks in the lane . Brave Horatius did follow after me. Lars Porsena of Clusium was going on a way ahead. His movements did look queer with his tail-feathers not growed out yet. He went on. He came a little way back to see if we were coming. Then he started on in a hurry way. I was watching him with joy feels in my heart. I was having thinks how nice it would be when he does get his new tail-feathers all growed out.
  Brave Horatius did give a queer bark, and he pulled the corner of my apron. I looked looks about. There the chore boy was in a corner of the corn field with a gun. He was pointing it out on the field. I had thinks he had not seeing of my dear Lars Porsena out there. I ran a quick run to keep him from pulling that thing on the gun that makes the noise and pains. I hollered hollers at him about Lars Porsena of Clusium crossing the cornfield. When I was come to where the chore boy was, I did tell him he must not shoot that old gun -- a ball in it might go as far as my dear Lars Porsena of Clusium.
  He just laughed a laugh, and he said -- he did -- that Lars Porsena was nothing but a crow. And then he pointed that gun right at my own dear Lars Porsena of Clusium . The noise was a big awful cal lamb of tea . I had feels I was killed dead when I saw him fall. I ran a quick run. When I was come to him, I found he was making little Mutterings. When I did go to pick him up, he was wet with much blood. I felt the shivers of his pains. I wrapped my apron around him so he would not have cold feels. There was much wetness upon my apron as I did go along. It was wetness of blood. The sky was more gray, and before I was come to the house we live in , the raindrops were coming down in a slow, sad way. I have thinks the sky was crying tears for the hurts of Lars Porsena of Clusium. And I was too.
  I had longs for the man that wears gray neckties and is kind to mice to be come back again. He and other mill folks and Dear Love and her husband and Sadie McKibben and her husband are all away gone until tomorrow even-time. I had not knows what to do for Lars Porsena of Clusium . This was not like that time he lost his tail. I did cuddle him up close in my arms, and I washed off some of the blood, but more and more came. And sleepy feels were upon him. I wrapped my apron more close around him, and I did sing songs to him about Ave Maria and "Sanctus, sanctus, sanctus, Dominus Deus."
  After the mamma was gone to bed and sleeps, I did take Lars Porsena of Clusium to bed with me. He was so sleepy. I cuddled him up in my arms and we both did go to sleep, for tired feels was upon us. When I had wake-ups early on this morning, my own dear Lars Porsena was very cold and he was very dead and stiffness was upon him. I did have queer feels in my throat and pain feels all up and down me. I so did want him alive again, to go explores. When the mamma was most awake, I climbed out the bedroom window with him in a quick way. I went on. I did go until I was come to the lane . And I did go on down our lane until I was come to the tall fir tree, Good King Edward I . I lay Lars Porsena of Clusium near unto Good King Edward I and I said a little prayer and I covered him over with moss.
  I now go to have his funeral at Dreux. Brave Horatius too does wait waits , and quiet is upon him. He has longs for Lars Porsena of Clusium to come perch on his back. And the winds are calling, and between the callings of the wind the willows do call down by the creek. They beckon and call to the soul of Lars Porsena of Clusium.
  The clouds go slow across the sky. The water goes slow in the brook. No one seems to be in a hurry. Even the wind walks slow. I think she wears a silk robe today. I can hear its faint rustle. I think the wind is dreaming too. With the whispering leaves she sings a dream-song. This is a dream-day. I stopped in the dusty road and looked a long while at the sun. It was round and a bright shining. Then for a little time afterwards, everywhere I looked I saw a tiny bright shining, and there was a queer feeling in my head.
  When I was come to the field, Savonarola did look like the flies were giving him some bothers. I took my apron and shooed some of them off. I could only reach a little way up. I have thinks it did help some. The chore boy did not come for some long time. While Savonarola waited his coming, I did give him some more fans with my apron. I had longings for the papa's newspaper. I had thinks I could make that go more far up than I could make my apron go. First I did stand on one side of Savonarola and shake my apron at the flies. Then I did stand on the other side of him. Those flies were most lazy. They didn't want to make moves at all. While I did make tries to make the flies make moves away, I did sing a song of fleurs of grandmére; of fraxinelle, romarin, anemone, narcisse, cornope, oleandre, iris, souci, eglantier, marguerite, aubépine, renoncule, immortelle, éclaire anemone, myosotis, eglantier, lys, iris, éclaire, dauphinelle, ornithogale, romarin, lys, eglantier, anemone, narcisse, souci, to Savonarola. Then I went to get him a drink in my little bucket that I do hide by the willows. He had likes for that drink of cold water and some more. When that chore boy was most come I did give Savonarola good-bye pats on his velvet nose.
  Afterwards I did go goes down by Launette and on to Nonette where the willows grow. I did print a message on a leaf. It was for the soul of Lars Porsena of Clusium . I left it on a willow branch with a little prayer that his soul would have finding of it.
  Then I did make begins to get ready for Aphrodite's foot-bath. She has needs for one most every day. And most days she does get it. I do fill seven Castoria bottles full of water. Then I put their corks in, and all of them that will go into the lard-pail I do so put in. Too, I have a little brush to brush her feet with while I do give them splash-water baths out of the Castoria bottles. Aphrodite has likes for foot-baths, and some days she does have likes for the shower-baths I do give to her out of the little flower-sprinkler . I give her back brushes and then some more showers from the flower-sprinkler.
  That flower-sprinkler I did write to the fairies for. I put the letter in the moss-box by the old log where I do put other letters for the fairies. The time it was not long until the fairies did leave this flower-sprinkler for it. I water the wild flowers after warm days and I water the plants that do grow in the garden. I can almost hear the tomato-plants say, "We were waiting for you," every time I do give them sprinkles. And the cabbage-plants have likes for them, too. Today, after I did give shower-baths to Aphrodite and Solomon Grundy and his sister Anthonya Mundy that has not got as much curl in her tail as has Solomon Grundy, then I did give shower-baths to some more folks.
  Afterwards I went to the cathedral to have service there, for this is the going-away day of Good King Edward I in 1307. Brave Horatius went with me and so did Minerva . She wore her cap with ruffles on it like the morning-cap of Jenny Strong . Menander Euripides Theocritus Thucydides walked by my side. And too Sir Francis Bacon went with us. His leg has well feels a long time now, but he walks not as other chickens walk. He has likes to go to cathedral service, and so has Thomas Chatterton Jupiter Zeus .
  Today after I did sing, "Sanctus, sanctus, sanctus, Dominus Deus," then we all did go goes to the house of Sadie McKibben . When we was come near unto it, there was Sadie McKibben on the big gray rock under the old fir tree. Her hands made quick moves with needles -- the kind that knit. She was knitting socks for the man that is her husband and does live at her house. I sat down on the ground beside her. She had on her blue gingham apron with the cross stitches on it. I did make counts of thirty cross stitches on that apron today. Some day I will count them all. There were some grasses growing close to the gray rock, and their little fingers did touch the cross stitches on the blue gingham apron of Sadie McKibben. I have thinks they too would like to cuddle up to Sadie McKibben.

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