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A MISUNDERSTANDING.

NO WRITER ATTRIBUTED

IT was a very aged man

I met long time ago;

The color of his face was tan,

His beard was white as snow.

A trifle faltering was his walk,

A trifle stammering was his talk;

But ever in the saddest tones

He crooned this simple rhyme :

"The same are women! maids or crones,

In every age and clime;

Men's hearts they use as stepping-stones

To cross the stream of Time."

"Give o'er!" I cried, "thou aged man!

Repeat those lines no more!

What if they do correctly scan?

Their spirit I deplore.

I've known of women, hundreds, who

Would discount men in being true."

He answered by repeated groans,

Crooning anew the rhyme :

"The same are women! maids or crones,

In every age and clime;

Men's hearts they use as stepping-stones

To cross the stream of Time."

"But are all women thus?" I asked.

"Are none to be exempt?

False were all smiles in which I've basked?

Vain all the dreams I've dreamt?

Can none be trusted? none believed?

Am I," I gasped, "by Maud deceived?"

His look pierced to my very bones;

Again he crooned this rhyme :

"The same are women! maids or crones,

In every age and clime;

Men's hearts they use as stepping-stones

To cross the stream of Time."

I listened more attentively.

(A depot we were in;

Before the entrance gate stood he;

His voice rose o'er the din.)

When next he spoke, I moved more near;

I could at last distinctly hear

What - spoken not in clearest tones -

I had supposed was rhyme :

"This way for Needham, Windsor, Doanes!

Inivry stage, at Lyme!

Please pass right through! this stops at Stone's!

Next steamboat train at nine!"

G. C. G.

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