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SWAN SONG

NO WRITER ATTRIBUTED

They were a gallant crew, that old gang of childhood. Nine-year old fancy toyed willingly with the pathos of Old Mother Hubbard and the little dog gazing ever so wistfully at a blank and bare chipboard. Swarms of children, with the readers among them, often gamboled gleefully over a battered shoe very much down at the heel, while the Old Woman Who Lived There watched their prancings in despair. And Mother Goose, fittingly astride a whiskery broomstick reigned proudly over her host of youthful subjects.

So it is with a feeling akin to sadness that the same readers now grown to manhood, greet the announcement that the Women's Christian Temperance Union has taken these self-same rimes and jingles and converted them into Prohibition propaganda. But the old order changeth and Progress is an exemplary ambition. Perhaps Mother Goose willingly aids and abets the Noble Experiment. Forsaking her eternal kingdom she will be seen in the night air stealthily aeroplaning--of course her broomstick is antiquated--hither and yon disseminating the evils of drink. Yes, the Eighteenth Amendment is an honorable thing and even Mother Goose should garner a Cause for her dotage.

And surely the ephemeralities of the little book will serve this Cause. The mystory of Jack and Jill and their resultant lack of equilibrium after a visit to the still on the hill, Humpty Dumpty's sin and the terrible retribution, which could not be altered by all the King's horses and all the King's men, may be directly attributable to a lurking fondness for the cups. The Children's Guardians of Verses may even go further. Under the scrutinizing eyes of these realists, Contrary Mary's garden of silver bells and cockle-shells will probably be exposed as an acreage devoted to the sowing of wild oats. Mother Goose, though she deserts her former cohorts, has at last made a distinctive contribution to the foibles of Americana.

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