In Which It Appears That a Senator Is But a Man
The light of the cheerful fire shone on the rug and carpet of a cosey parlor, and glittered on the sides of the tea-cups and well-brightened tea-pot, as Senator Bird was drawing off his boots, preparatory to inserting his feet in a pair of new handsome slippers, which his wife had been working for him while away on his senatorial tour. Mrs. Bird, looking the very picture of delight, was superintending the arrangements of the table, ever and anon mingling admonitory remarks to a number of frolicsome juveniles, who were effervescing in all those modes of untold gambol and mischief that have astonished mothers ever since the flood.
Tom, let the door-knob alone,theres a man! Mary! Mary! dont pull the cats tail,poor pussy! Jim, you mustnt climb on that table,no, no!You dont know, my dear, what a surprise it is to us all, to see you here tonight! said she, at last, when she found a space to say something to her husband.
Yes, yes, I thought Id just make a run down, spend the night, and have a little comfort at home. Im tired to death, and my head aches!
Mrs. Bird cast a glance at a camphor-bottle, which stood in the half-open closet, and appeared to meditate an approach to it, but her husband interposed.
No, no, Mary, no doctoring! a cup of your good hot tea, and some of our good home living, is what I want. Its a tiresome business, this legislating!
And the senator smiled, as if he rather liked the idea of considering himself a sacrifice to his country.
Well, said his wife, after the business of the tea-table was getting rather slack, and what have they been doing in the Senate?
Now, it was a very unusual thing for gentle little Mrs. Bird ever to trouble her head with what was going on in the house of the state, very wisely considering that she had enough to do to mind her own. Mr. Bird, therefore, opened his eyes in surprise, and said,
Not very much of importance.
Well; but is it true that they have been passing a law forbidding people to give meat and drink to those poor colored folks that come along? I heard they were talking of some such law, but I didnt think any Christian legislature would pass it!
Why, Mary, you are getting to be a politician, all at once.
No, nonsense! I wouldnt give a fip for all your politics, generally, but I think this is something downright cruel and unchristian. I hope, my dear, no such law has been passed.
There has been a law passed forbidding people to help off the slaves that come over from Kentucky, my dear; so much of that thing has been done by these reckless Abolitionists, that our brethren in Kentucky are very strongly excited, and it seems necessary, and no more than Christian and kind, that something should be done by our state to quiet the excitement.
And what is the law? It dont forbid us to shelter those poor creatures a night, does it, and to give em something comfortable to eat, and a few old clothes, and send them quietly about their business?
Why, yes, my dear; that would be aiding and abetting, you know.
Mrs. Bird was a timid, blushing little woman, of about four feet in height, and with mild blue eyes, and a peach-blow complexion, and the gentlest, sweetest voice in the world;as for courage, a moderate- sized cock-turkey had been known to put her to rout at the very first gobble, and a stout house-dog,
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