Stránka:roll 1917.djvu/18

From thewoodcraft.org
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Tato stránka nebyla zkontrolována


xii A Message them. He was a true naturalist, burning with love for all these things of the woods, but suffering for lack of some guide. He had no books, not even a sympathetic friend; and before our walk was finished he made me his confidant. He told me in his own way how he longed to know all these things and how he wanted to be with them. He carried all the flowers I had named. By the way he spoke of them, I knew that he would never forget those names as long as he lived; and, when I left him, he asked shyly, "Some day soon, will you tell me some more?" Poor lonely, loving child of the woods! My heart went out to him. I wonder if he got as n^uch happiness out of hearing as I did out of telling those things. Afterward, I took him many times for little walks and talks among the birds and flowers, and from these we got on to other things. The chance of a cut finger one day, and his getting poisoned by ivy, led to the whole subject of fijrst-aid, and from that to the duty of being strong in body. Removing some broken glass from a road where it was liable to hurt some one's feet or bicycle, was the beginning of thought for others and duty to the neighbors. He was shy and«distrustf ul of strangers ; in fact, he avoided them and said so. But, when I reminded him that we were strangers that first day, he looked serious and said, "Yes, I know I lose a great deal by wanting to be alone. I'll fight agamst it." When I spoke of the Great Spirit, he was silent, but deeply attentive. These were among his begmnings. He grew up to be a naturalist; and, more than that, to be a fine type of citizen. Shy yet, he always will be; but he is a strong, dean, happy man, holdmg a high government position to-day; a blessing to those about him and a help to all who Uve in the woods. Fortunately for Wm and those about him his kind destiny took him to the true school, the school of Woodcraft, where his body, brain, soul, and social instincts all were trained; and the training was what he had yearned for. Listen, oh, American Boy of to-day! The things that I told him, and found such pleasure in telling, are the things I have written down in this book; for I think that you are a little like him. You want so much to know about wild life; you want to be strong; you are eager to be important in the gang you play with; you want to know and be in the big world ; these are whole- some ambitions, and it is with the hc^ that I may help you as I helped the "Frog-boy" in those long gone woodland days that