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4. Now Phebe, over at the farm,
Was sitting, sewing, snug and warm;
But hearing, as she thought, her name,
Sprang up, and to the rescue came,
Beheld the scene, and thus she thought:
“If now a kitchen chair were brought,
And I could reach the lady's foot,
I'd draw her downward by the boot,
Then cut the rope, and let him go;
He cannot miss the pile of snow.”
He sees her moving toward his wife,
Armed with a chair and carving-knife,
And, ere he is aware, perceives
His head ascending to the eaves;
And, guessing what the two are at,
Screams from beneath the roof, “Stop that!
You'll make me fall too far, by half !”
But Phebe answers, with a laugh,
“Please tell a body by what right
You've brought your wife to such a plight!"
And then, with well-directed blows,
She cuts the rope and down he goes.
5. The wife untied, they walk around,
When lo! no Stephen can be found.
They call in vain, run to and fro;
They look around, above, below;
No trace or token can they see,
And deeper grows the mystery.
Then Rachel's heart within her sank;
But, glancing at the snowy bank,
She caught a little gleam of hope, -
A gentle movement of the rope.
They scrape away a little snow;
What's this? A hat! Ah! he's below.
Then upward heaves the snowy pile,
And forth he stalks in tragic style,
Unhurt, and with a roguish smile;
And Rachel sees, with glad surprise,
The missing found, the fallen rise.
QUESTIONS. 1. What parts of the selection in this lesson require the Explosive
Falsetto? 2. What do the other parts require ?
1. Exercises in Position.
2. Exercises in Gesture.
3. Exercises in Breathing.
EXERCISES IN ARTICULATION.
V, as in veer.
1. Value virtue highly.
2. Valiant deeds deserve praise.
3. Vain, vain, are all thy efforts.
4. Verily, verily, I say unto you.
5. Vile villains vent their vengeance.
Nasal Quality. The Nasal is a dull, heavy quality of voice, having the resonance in the nasal passage. It is not, as is generally supposed, a speaking through the nose, for the tone may be produced as well with nostrils closed as with them open, but simply placing the resonance in the nasal passage.
As this quality is rarely used, except in ludicrous impersonation, it will be presented only in one form, the Expulsive.
Practice the following sounds and words, first with the nasal passage closed and then in a nasal tone with
EXERCISES IN NASAL EXPULSIVE,
1. ē, as in me.
4. ū, birds,
trees, smarter, thumb, man,
down, weasel, asleep, pain, head, speak,
Nasal EXPULSIVE—WHEN USED. The Nasal Quality will rarely be required except in the personation of peculiar characters, in which the object is to burlesque and render more ludicrous. In the following selection the utterances of Darius should be given with the Nasal Expulsive.
Nasal, Expulsive Form.
Darius Green and his Flying Machine.
1. If ever there lived a Yankee lad,
Wise or otherwise, good or bad,
Who, seeing the birds fly, didn't jump
With flapping arins from stake or stump,
Or, spreading the tail of his coat for a sail,
Take a soaring leap from post or rail,
And wonder why he couldn't fly,
And flap and flutter and wish and try,
If ever you knew a country dunce
Who didn't try that as often as once,
All I can say is, that's a sign
He never would do for a hero of mine,
An aspiring genius was Dary Green;
The son of a farmer,-age fourteen,
His body was long and lank and lean,-
Just right for flying, as will be seen;
He had two eyes as bright as a bean,
And a freckled nose that grew between,
A little awry; for I must mention
That he had riveted his attention
Upon his wonderful invention,
Twisting his tongue as he twisted the strings,
And working his face as he work'd the wings,
And with every turn of gimlet or screw
Turning and screwing his mouth round too,
Till his nose seem'd bent to catch the scent,
Around some corner, of new-baked pies,
And his wrinkled cheeks and his squinting eyes
Grew puckered into a queer grimace,
That made him look very droll in the face,
And also very wise.
2. And wise he must have been, to do more
Than ever a genius did before,
Excepting Dædalus of yore
And his son Icarus, who wore
Upon their backs those wings of wax
He had read of in the old almanacs.
Darius was clearly of the opinion,
That the air is also man's dominion,
And that, with paddle or fin or pinion,
We soon or late shall navigate
The azure as now we sail the sea.
The thing looks simple enough to me;
And, if you doubt it,
Hear how Darius reason'd about it:
3. “The birds can fly, an' why can't I?
Must we give in,” says he with a grin,
“That the bluebird an' phæbe are smarter'n we be?
Jest fold our hands, an' see the swaller
An' black-bird an' cat-bird beat us holler?
Does the little chatterin', sassy wren,
No bigger'n my thumb, know more than men?
Jest show me that! ur prove 't the bat
Hez got more brains than's in my hat,
An' i'll back down, an' not till then!”
He argued further: “Nur I can't see
What's th' use o' wings to a bumble-bee,
Fur to git a livin' with, more'n to me;-
Aint my business important's his'n is?
That Icarus made a pretty muss,
Him an' his daddy Dædalus;
They might 'a' know'd that wings made o' wax
Wouldn't stand sun-heat an' hard whacks:
I'll make mine o' luther, ur suthin' ur other.”
4. And he said to himself, as he tinker'd and plann'd,
“But I aint goin' to show my hand
To nummies that never can understand
The fust idee that's big an' grand.”
So he kept his secret from all the rest,
Safely buttoned within his vest;
And in the loft above the shed
Himself he locks, with thimble and thread
And wax and hammer and buckles and screws,
And all such things as geniuses use;-
Two bats for patterns, curious fellows !
A charcoal-pot and a pair of bellows;
Some wire, and several old umbrellas;
A carriage-cover, for tail and wings;
A piece of harness; and straps and string;
And a big strong box, in which he locks
These and a hundred other things.
His grinning brothers, Reuben and Burke
And Nathan and Jotham and Solomon, lurk
Around the corner to see him work,
Sitting cross-legged, like a Turk,
Drawing the wax'd-end through with a jerk,
And boring the holes with a comical quirk
Of his wise old head, and a knowing smirk.