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In the early morning, when the dew was bright on the grass, a child passed along the highway, and sang as he went. It was spring, and the ferns were unrolling their green bundles, and the hepatica showed purple under her gray fur. The child looked about him with eager, happy eyes, rejoicing in all he saw, and answering the birds' songs with notes as gay as their own. Now and then he dropped a seed here or there, for he had a handful of them; sometimes he threw one to the birds; again he dropped one for the squirrels; and still again he would toss one into the air for very play, for that was what he loved best.
Now it chanced that he passed by a spot where the earth lay bare, with no tree or plant to cover its brown breast.
"Oh!" said the child. "Poor place, will nothing grow in you? here is a seed for you, and now I will plant it properly."
So he planted the seed properly, and smoothed the earth over it, and went his way singing, and looking at the white clouds in the sky and at the green things unfolding around him.
It was a long, long journey the child had to go. Many perils beset his path, many toils he had to overpass, many wounds and bruises he got on the way. When he returned, one would hardly have known, to look at him, that he was still a child. The day had been cruelly hot, and still the afternoon sun beat fiercely down on the white road. His clothes were torn and dusty; he toiled on, and sighed as he went, longing for some spot of shade where he might sit down to rest.
Presently he saw in the distance a waving of green, and a cool shadow stretching across the white glowing road: and he drew near, and it was a tree, young and vigorous, spreading its arms abroad, mantled in green leaves that whispered and rustled.
Thankfully the child threw himself down in the pleasant shade, and rested from his weary journey; and as he rested, he raised his eyes to the green whispering curtain above him, and blessed the hand that planted the tree.
The little green leaves nodded and rustled, and whispered to one another:
"Yes! yes! it is himself he is blessing. But he does not know, and that is the best of all!"
|Art of Worldly Wisdom Daily|
In the 1600s, Balthasar Gracian, a jesuit priest wrote 300 aphorisms on living life called "The Art of Worldly Wisdom." Join our newsletter below and read them all, one at a time.
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