The Prairie: A Tale

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Hurd & Houghton, 1871 - 526 pages
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Page 187 - A pick-axe, and a spade, a spade, For and a shrouding sheet : O, a pit of clay for to be made For such a guest is meet.
Page 340 - The situation of the fugitives would have still been hazardous had not the area enlarged as the flame encircled them. But by advancing to the spot where the trapper had kindled the grass, they avoided the heat, and in a very few moments the flames began to recede in every quarter, leaving them enveloped in a cloud of smoke, but perfectly safe from the torrent of fire that was still furiously rolling onwards.
Page 339 - The subtle element seized with avidity upon its new fuel, and in a moment forked flames were gliding among the grass, as the tongues of ruminating animals are seen rolling among their food, apparently in quest of its sweetest portions.
Page 523 - Middleton felt the hand which he held grasp his own with incredible power, and the old man, supported on either side by his friends, rose upright to his feet. For a...
Page 333 - slowly repeated the old man, lifting his tall person from its seat with a deliberate and abstracted air, while he kept his eye riveted on the changing and certainly beautiful tints, that were garnishing the vault of heaven. " Rising of the sun ! I like not such risings of the sun. Ah's me ! the imps have circumvented us with a vengeance. The prairie is on fire ! " " God in heaven protect us ! " cried Middleton, catching Inez to his bosom, under the instant impression of the imminence of their danger....
Page 315 - The clouds and sunbeams, o'er his eye That once their shades and glory threw Have left in yonder silent sky No vestige where they flew.
Page 339 - The captain felt the reproof, and instantly began to imitate the industry of Paul, who was tearing the decayed herbage from the ground in a sort of desperate compliance with the trapper's direction. Even Ellen lent her hands to the labor, nor was it long before Inez was seen similarly employed, though none amongst them knew why or wherefore.
Page 339 - When life is thought to be the reward of labor, men are wont to be industrious. A very few moments sufficed to lay bare a spot of some twenty feet in diameter. Into one edge of this little area the trapper brought the females, directing Middleton and Paul to cover their light and inflammable dresses with the blankets of the party. So soon as this precaution was observed, the old man approached the opposite...
Page 385 - I am not prone to weeping, as our sex Commonly are ; the want of which vain dew Perchance shall dry your pities : but I have That honourable grief lodged here which burns Worse than tears drown...
Page 339 - The experience of the trapper was in the right. As the fire gained strength and heat, it began to spread on three sides, dying of itself on the fourth, for want of aliment. As it increased, and the sullen roaring announced its power, it cleared everything before it, leaving the black and smoking soil far more naked than if the scythe had swept the place. The situation of the fugitives would have still been hazardous had not the area enlarged as the flame encircled them.

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