Stránka:tales 1921.djvu/19

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Mother Carey

All-mother! Mater Cara! I have never seen you, but I hungered so to know you that I understood it when you came, unseen, and silently whispered to me that first time in the long ago.

I cannot tell the children what you look like, Mother Carey, for mortal eye hath never rested on your face; and yet I can offer them a portrait, O strong Angel of the Wild Things, neither young nor old — Oh! loving One that neither trembles nor relents!

A mink he was, a young mink and foolish. One of a happy brood, who were seeing the world with their mother — a first glimpse of it. She was anxious and leading, happy and proud, warning, sniffing, inviting, loving, yet angersome at trivial disobedience, doling out her wisdom in nips and examples and shrill warnings that all heeded; except this one, the clever fool of the family, the self-satisfied smart one. He would not be warned, the thing smelt so good. He plunged ahead. Mother was a fool; he was wiser than Mother. Here was a merry feasting for him. Then clank! The iron jaws of a trap sprang from the hiding grass, and clutched on his soft young paws. Screams of pain, futile strainings, writhings, ragings and moanings; bloody jaws on the trap; the mother distraught with grief, eager to take all the punishment herself, but helpless and stunned, unable ..text continues