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Scene 45
A Long Ride on William Shakespeare

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  After I did give the floor washes and mops up where the splashes of buttermilk did jump, then the mamma put me out the door and told me to get out and stay out of her way. I so did. I went out across the field and in along the lane . Lars Porsena of Clusium had going with me. I looked looks away to the meeting of the roads . There was a horse come near unto it. A man was riding on this horse. I like to ride upon a horse. I like to stand up when I ride upon a horse. It is so much joy. I feel the feels the horse does feel when he puts each foot to the ground.
Follow One Character When I did see that horse go on and on, then I did have feels it would be nice to go a long way on explores. I did have thinks William Shakespeare had wants to go. He was in the lane . I gave him pats on the nose and I talked with him about it. We did start on. When we were come to the end of the lane there was the gate. It did take some long time to get it open. The plug did stick so tight and more yet. I did pull and I made more pulls. It came out. It did come out in a quick way. I did have a quick setdown. I got up in a slow way. I did show William Shakespeare the way to go out the gate. He went, I went. We went adown the road . A little way we went and we were come to a stump. I made a climb upon it. From the stump I did climb upon the back of William Shakespeare.
  We went on. When we were come to the meeting of the roads , we went the way of the road that goes to the upper camps. We made no stops until we were come to where a long time ago the road had a longing to go across the rivière , and some men that had understanding made it a bridge to go across on. When we were come to the bridge, we made a stop and I did sing to the rivière a song. I sang it Le chant de Seine, de Havre, et Essonne et Nonette et Roullon et Iton et Darnetal et Ourcq et Rille et Loing et Eure et Audelle et Nonette et Sarc. I sang it as Angel Father did teach me to, and as he has wrote it in the book.
  And after I did sing it all, we did watch the water splash itself against the legs of the bridge . The water goes not now slow as it did in summer days. We went on. And the boards of the bridge did make squeaks as we went across. And they said in their squeaks, "Petite Françoise , we have been waiting a long time for you to go across the rivière ." And I did have William Shakespeare to make a little stop so I could tell the boards I have been waiting waits a long time to go across. While I so was doing, they did not squeak. When we made a start to go on, they did squeak.
  After we were across the rivière we went in a more slow way. There was so many things to see. Trees and trees were all along the way. There were more ranch-houses . I did have seeing of them set always back from the road , and smoke did come in curls from out their chimneys. At a bend in the road there was a big chêne tree -- it was a very big one. On its arms there was bunches of mistletoe. I made a stop to have looks at them. I had thinks I might reach up to them. I stood on tiptoe on the back of William Shakespeare . I could reach a reach to one limb. I put my arms around it and had a swing. It was very nice to swing one forward and two back again.
  But when I was ready to stand on William Shakespeare again, he was not there. I looked a look down and about. He was gone on a little way. I had wonders what to do. There was most too many rocks to drop down on. Lars Porsena came and perched on the limb above. I did call William Shakespeare four times, and in between I called him by the bird-call that does mean I have needs of him. He did come and he made a stop under the limb. I was most glad. My arms did have a queer feel from hanging there. I was real glad just to sit quiet on the back of William Shakespeare while he did walk on. And Lars Porsena of Clusium did sit behind me.
  We went on. We had seeing of the section men working on the railroad track where the dinky engine goes with the cars of lumbers to the mill town . They were making stoop-overs . I had seeing they did screwtineyes the rails and the ties they stay upon. The men did wave their hands to us, and I did wave back, and on the fence there was a bird with a yellow and a little black moon across his front. His back -- it was like the grasses of the field grown old. And his song is the song of all the voices of the field. We have seeing of him and his brothers all days of the year.
  After we had going past the next turn in the road I did look a look back. A little bush with some tallness was yet a-nodding . It was asking a question. I gave William Shakespeare two pats on the shoulder. That means turn about. He did. When we were come to the bush a-nodding, I leaned over to the tallness of it. I put my ear close so I could have hearing. It had wants to know what day this was. I did tell it this day was the going-away of John of Gaunt and the borning day of Felix Mendelssohn in 1809. It had hearings, but it did not stop nodding. But it was asking no questions. It was nodding nods of the day this is. I felt the satisfaction feels it did feel when it did know the answer to its question. I do too have likes to ask questions about things so to have knows.
  We went on in a slow way. I did look looks about. And there were birds -- robins and two bluebirds and more larks of the meadow and other crows like unto Lars Porsena of Clusium . When we was come to another bend in the road , William Shakespeare made a stop. I made a slide off. I went to pick him some grass. A wagon went by. Two horses were in front of it, and on its high seat was a man with his hat on sideways and a woman with a big fascinator most hiding her face. There was seven children in the wagon -- two with sleeps upon them and a little girl with a tam-o'-shanter and a frown and a cape on her. I have thinks from the looks on their faces they all did have wants to get soon to where they were going to.
  I brought the grass back to the road to William Shakespeare . I smiled a smile and waved to the last little girl of all on the wagon . She smiled and waved her hand. Then three more of them waved. I waved some more. The wagon had its going on, and William Shakespeare had begins to nibble at the grass I was holding in my fingers. While he did nibble nibbles I did tell him poems. William Shakespeare does have such a fondness for poetry and nibbles of grass and apples and sugar-lumps.
  While we did have waiting at the bend of the road , I saw a maple tree with begins of buds upon it. I did walk up to the tree. I put my ear up to it to have listens to the sap going up. It is a sound I like to hear. There is so much of springtime in it. While I did listen, in the other ear that was not to the maple tree I did have hearings of the talkings of the wind and petite plants just having begins to grow out of the earth. The wind did say, "Je viens -- je viens." The plants did answer make, "Nous entendons -- nous entendons." So they did speak. Then the wind did say, "Le printemps viendra bientot." And the plants did answer make, "Nous fleurirons bientot."
  I did have glad feels . William Shakespeare moved a little move. I had some doubts if he did hear all plainly they did say, so I went up to his nose and said it all over to him. He had understanding. We went on. When we were come again to a stump, I did climb again upon his back. We went by a big mill with piles of lumber to its near side, and a long wide roof it had. There was a row of lumber-shanties and some more. There was children about and dogs. They did smile and wave and I did too. We went on. More fir trees of great tallness was on either side the road . They did stretch out their great arms to welcome to us. I so do love trees. I have thinks I was once a tree growing in the forest; now all trees are my brothers.
  When we were gone a little way on from the very tall trees, in the sky the light of day was going from blue to silver. And thoughts had coming down the road to meet us. They were thoughts from out the mountains where are the mines . They were thoughts from the canyons that come down to meet the road by the rivière . I did feel their coming close about us. Very near they were and all about. We went on a little way only. We went very slow. We had listens to the thoughts. They were thoughts of blooming-time and coming-time . They were the soul thoughts of little things that soon will have their borning-time.
  When we did go on we did hear little sounds coming from a long way down the road . They were like the shoe on the foot of a horse making touches on the road in a hurry way. The sound, it came more near. We made a stop to have a listen. It was coming more near gray-light-time and we could not have plain sees until the horse was come more near a way down the road. Then we had sees a man was riding on the horse. They came on in the quick way that made the little fast patter sounds on the ground. When he was most come to where we were, the man did have the horse to go in a more slow way. When he was come to where we were he did have the horse to stop.
  The man upon the horse was the man that wears gray neckties and is kind to mice. He did seem most glad that we were on the road he was on. He did breathe some satisfaction breathes just like Sadie McKibben does when she finds I haven't broken my bones when I fall out of a tree. Then he made begins. He said, "The fairies -- " And I said, "What?" He said, "The fairies have left a note on a leaf in the moss-box by the old log. It was a note for me to go until I find you and William Shakespeare -- to bring you home again before starlight-time ."
  There was a little fern-plant with the note on the leaf. He gave them to me. And we came our way home. Now I have thinks it was God in his goodness did send the fairies to leave that fern-note on the leaf. And William Shakespeare and I were glad he was come to meet us, for the stars were not and dark was before we were come home. But the man that wears gray neckties and is kind to mice, he did have knows of the way of the road by night.
Chapter Day Scene Paragraph
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