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[150] date. That was all. I put my hand over my face and wept like a girl. They were hastily written, those simple records; but how ominous and how graphic! Could any eloquence have so faithfully portrayed the condition of a plague-stricken city! Shingles for tombstones — no time for marble; for the chisel, a pencil — hastily used: and away — away — away — for dear, dear life! Poor cowardly relatives, make haste — make haste, or the shingle may yet mark where your timid corpses lie! Away! away! away!

With tears streaming down my face — no sound, save the sighing of the winds, and the grass and the leaves — no grasshopper, even, and no bird, to tell me that there was life still astir — I slowly, slowly, moved over to the opposite corner of the burying-ground.


An open grave!

I stopped my enumeration, and went over to it. I was sick and tired, and could count the red graves no longer.

I expected to see a coffin at the bottom of the grave; but it was empty. I looked again, and suddenly uttered an exclamation of delight.

I seized the shovel, and jumped down into the open grave.

I know that the reader will laugh at me — I know that some of you will think that I was mad; but I never before experienced a keener thrill of pleasure, never felt so sudden a love for any living thing, as when I saw, at the bottom of the open grave, and jumped into it to rescue — a mouse!

Yes, it was a poor little mouse, that, by some mischance, had fallen into the open grave. I do n't feel

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