酷兔英语



LIVE TO BE USEFUL

OR,

_THE STORY OF ANNIE LEE AND

HER IRISH NURSE._

[Decoration]

_THOMAS NELSON AND SONS_

_London, Edinburgh, Dublin, and New York_

_1913_

[Illustration: Annorah turned, and saw the shadow of a man on the

sloping rock.

_Page 25._]

LIVE TO BE USEFUL.

CHAPTER I.

ANNIE'S PLAN.

Annie Lee was a cripple. Until her eighth summer she had been strong

and well, like most other children; but then disease began to appear,

and although she had skilful doctors and kind nurses, it was soon too

plain that she was never to be well again.

Five years of pain and weakness had been her portion at the time our

story commences. So accustomed had she become to her sad situation,

that it seemed like a delusive dream when she remembered the sportive

hours of her earlier childhood. Like other sick children, she was far

more thoughtful than was quite natural at her age, and very seldom in

her easiest moments laughed aloud. But she was not an unhappy child.

As soon as she was old enough to understand that she had a sinful

heart and needed salvation, she had earnestly sought the Saviour of

sinners, and had been graciously received by him, and made a lamb of

his flock. In the school of Christ she learned to bear pain without

murmuring, and to submit with cheerfulness to her lot in life. Instead

of requiring comfort from her parents, who seemed to realize her

misfortune more fully than she did herself, she became their consoler,

and rarely failed in her efforts to lighten their sorrow on her

account.

"It might have been so much worse, mamma," she said one day, when Mrs.

Lee was lamenting her condition. "Only think of poor lame Phelim,

Biddy Dillon's little boy."

"What is the matter with him?" asked her mother.

"Have you not seen him? He is often in the back-yard when Biddy comes

to wash in the kitchen. I've watched him often. I think it was before

he came to this country--but I'm not sure--that a large stone, falling

from a wall, so mangled his poor limbs that one of them had to be cut

off. I never see him limping about on his crutches while Biddy is

washing without thanking God for my happier fate."

"Why, Annie, it is not probable that he suffers one-half as much as

you do."

"As much _pain_, do you mean, mamma?"

"Yes."

"I wasn't thinking of that. They are very poor; and if he lives to be

a man, how can he earn the comforts of life? I need have no care on

that account."

"I daresay he has none. There are several trades that he might learn

which require a sitting posture; he might be a shoemaker, for

instance. Do not fret on his account, Annie."

"It seems to me, mamma," replied Annie, with a thoughtful air, "that

his only prospect for the future is to be pushed about here and there

in the crowd, until at last he finds a refuge in the grave."

"What foolish fancies!" said Mrs. Lee, rising, as a noise in the yard

below attracted her to the window. "We know nothing about the future,

and it is not quite right to make ourselves sad about it. It is hardly

like your usual trust in God, to be thus imagining trouble. There's a

little lame boy in the yard, who, I suppose, is Phelim; he seems happy

enough. Hark! don't you hear him sing? He is sitting on the bench

behind the clothes-frame, and his mother is hanging out the clothes to

dry. Don't you hear her laugh at what he is singing?"

"What is it, mamma? Can you hear the words?" asked Annie, brightening

up, and raising herself on her elbow as she lay on her low couch.

"I hear them very well; but his Irish gibberish is as Greek to me. All

that I can make out is what seems to be the chorus:

"'O Ireland, green Ireland,

Swate gem o' the sae!'"

"Mamma," said Annie, after listening with smiling interest a while,

"it troubles me very often because Phelim knows nothing about our

Saviour. He has a sister, two years older than I am, who cannot read.

She never went to school; and none of the family can read a word."

"How did you learn this?"

"From Phelim. I speak to him sometimes when he plays under the

window."

"Well, I don't know how we can help them. If we should offer to teach

them, they would not be willing to learn."

"Are you sure of it, mamma?"

"Not quite so sure, perhaps, as if I had tried to instruct them; but I

know that they regard a book as a sort of Protestant trap, made on

purpose to catch them, soul and body. It is an evil that we cannot

remedy.--Have you more pain than usual, my dear?" said Mrs. Lee,

appearing a little startled, and bending anxiously over Annie's couch

as she observed an unusual flush on her pale cheek.

"No, mamma; but I was thinking of a plan that I have had for some

weeks, and hoping that you would not object to it."

"Object! You shall have whatever you like, if it can be procured. What

is it, Annie?"

"Oh, dear mamma," said Annie, "I do so long to do some good! I cannot

bear to live such a useless life. Every day, when I feel the goodness

of God and his great love to me, I long to do something for him. And I

think, mamma, that I have planned a way to do good without getting off

my sofa."

"You are always doing good, Annie. Do you suppose that your patience

under suffering is not a lesson to us in our smaller trials? There are

many ways in which you are a blessing to us all; so do not weary

yourself with new schemes. If God had required active service from

you, he would have given you health and strength."

"But I can do something, mamma. Please to hear my plan. I want to tell

you something more about Phelim's sister. She has been Mrs. Green's

servant, and her business was to assist in the nursery. She would have

done nicely, Phelim says, but for her violent temper. Last week one of

the children was cross and provoking, and the girl got angry and

pushed him down-stairs. He was much bruised; and, of course, she was

dismissed at once."

"I should hope so. But your plan, Annie?"

"The poor girl has no place, mamma, and, with such a dreadful temper,

is not likely to get one soon. And they are very poor. I know that

since Jessie left us, you are too closely confined here with me; and

my plan is to have this poor girl to wait on me, and--"

"Why, Annie, what a wild project!" interrupted her mother. "You must

not think of it. She would be throwing you out of the window, or

beating you to a jelly, in her first fit of ill-temper."

"Oh no, she won't, mamma," urged Annie. "She will not be so easily

vexed here, and no one is ever angry with me. Please to try her."

"Are you really in earnest, Annie?"

"Yes; and very anxious to be indulged in my strange plan."

"Have you thought how awkward she will be in assisting you?"

"I have thought of it all, over and over," replied Annie, "and I

think she will make a good nurse for me."

Mrs. Lee hesitated a long time. She could not bear to deny Annie, and

could not overcome her dislike to the proposed arrangement. But

Annie's pleading look at length decided her.

"You wish very much to try this wild-goose plan!" she said, resuming

the conversation.

"Very much, mamma," replied Annie.

"Well, you shall have your own way about it. It will last but a few

days, I am sure; and the change will interest you at any rate, poor

thing!" Then going to the window, she looked down into the yard, and

said, "Mrs. Dillon, come up to Miss Annie's room, will you?"

In a minute the woman made her appearance at the door, with the suds

still lingering in foamy flakes upon her arms and along the folds of

her apron.

"You have a daughter, I believe?" said Mrs. Lee.

"Two of them, an' ye plaze, ma'am," replied Biddy, wiping her arms as

she spoke.

"Are they both at home?"

"It's Bessie that is in service; and it's only Annorah that's at home,

shure."

"What is Annorah doing?" inquired Mrs. Lee.

"Doing?" repeated Biddy wonderingly.

"I mean, how does she get her living?"

"At service too, ma'am, when it is to be had. But, shure, it's a bad

timper she has, and will sthrike and scold whin her blood is up. An'

she has lost the fine, comfortable place she had with Mrs. Green, jist

for a thrifle of spaach."

"That is unfortunate."

"Oh, thin, ye may well say that. Anither mouth in a family like me own

is far from convenient whin the cost of the mate and the flour is

beyond raach intirely."

"Well, Biddy, Miss Annie wants some one to wait on her in the place of

Jessie, who has gone. She has taken a fancy to try your girl. When can

she come?"

"Coom! Why, this very hour, an' ye like. A blessin' on yer swate, pale

face!" said Biddy, looking pityingly towards Annie.

"She must be gentler here," said Mrs. Lee; "she must govern her

temper. Miss Annie must not be excited and made worse by your girl's

fits of ill-humour."

"Leave her to me, mamma," said Annie. "I think, Mrs. Dillon, that

there will be no trouble. What did you say is her name?"

"Annorah, an' ye plaze, miss."

"Annorah? Very well. When shall she come, mamma?"

"Not until Monday, I think," replied Mrs. Lee. Then turning to Mrs.

Dillon, she added, "You may send her on Monday."

"An' she gets a mad streak along o' that pritty crathur," said Mrs.

Biddy, as she went down-stairs, "she desarves the warm bating she'll

get from her own mother at home."

CHAPTER II.

ANNORAH'S FIRST APPEARANCE IN THE SICK-ROOM.

Monday came, and Annorah came too. It was with a doubting heart and a

troubled look that Mrs. Lee introduced her into her daughter's

chamber. It would be difficult to find a plainer-looking or a more

awkward girl.

Mrs. Lee looked at the monstrous foot in its heavy shoe, and at the

thick, freckled hands, that seemed incapable of the gentle services

that Annie's helplessness required, and wondered at her own folly in

indulging the singular caprice of her daughter. But a single look at

Annie assured her that she, at least, felt no misgivings. Still, she

did not like to leave them by themselves until she had tested the new

attendant's ability.

"Annorah," she said, "what sort of work can you do? I'm afraid you

are not used to such services as Miss Annie will require."

"I can do most anything, ma'am," answered the girl resolutely.

"Indeed! Well, let me see how you would manage to place Annie on the

bed when she is tired of the sofa."

The words were scarcely out of her mouth before Annorah had lifted the

frail form of the invalid in her arms and deposited her in the middle

of the bed. Annie burst into such a laugh as she had not indulged in

for a year.

"I think you may be satisfied, mamma," she said; "I never was moved

easier."

Mrs. Lee began to think better of Annie's plan, and joined quite

cordially in her daughter's mirth.

"And if she were too tired to rest in any position, what would you

do?"

"Carry her to the windows, or out in the air, for a change.--Will ye

plaze to thry it, Miss Annie?"

"Not now, Annorah." Then looking towards her mother, she said, "Mamma,

you may be easy; Annorah and I shall get on famously together."

Thus assured, Mrs. Lee left them, and went down-stairs with a better

opinion of the rough Irish girl than she had thought it possible to

entertain an hour previous.

Left by themselves, the two girls began to form an acquaintance with

each other. Two persons more unlike could not have been brought

together. Annorah was evidently much interested in her young charge,

and felt the most unbounded sympathy in her sufferings. Annie spoke

first.

"Please draw my couch nearer the window, Annorah. That will do. Now,

sit down on this low stool, and tell me how long it is since you left

Ireland."

"It's two years, miss, coom April."

"So lately? Then you remember all about the old country?"

"Remember! An' it's me that'll niver forget that same. The beautiful

counthree it is!"

"Pleasanter than this, do you think?"

"A thousand times. There is no place in the world like it; the dear

ould counthree!"

"Why, then, did you leave it, Annorah?"

"Bad luck we had, miss; and a worse luck intirely here, the mane town

that this is."

"Tell me all about it."

"What for? That ye, too, may laugh like the rest, and call us the

mane, dirty set of Irish vagabonds?" asked the girl, her small eyes

kindling with a sense of imaginary insult.

"No, no, Annorah. You don't think I would say such things, do you? But

you need not tell me a word if you had rather not. I only thought it

would make me forget my pain for a little time; and, besides, I love

dearly to hear about Ireland, or any place where I have never been,"

said Annie, with a tone of voice so calm and earnest that the girl

could not doubt her sincerity.

"Do you, in truth? Why, thin, it's me that'll talk till I hoarse

meself dumb for yer good. It was the famine, miss, that came first,

and stole the bit o' food that was saved. The praties were rotten in

the field; and the poor pigs starved that should have helped us out

wi' the rint. Och, but it was a sore time o' grief whin sorra a

mouthful were left for the bit childer and the ould people who were

weak before wi' ould age! In the worst time o' all, whin the need was

the sorest, our Bessie got into disgrace, and came home from service

wi' niver a penny to help herself or us. There was nought to do and

nought to eat at all. The neighbours were faint wi' the hoonger; and

so, before the worst came, we left all that was dear and came here."

"How many of you came, Annorah?"

"Nine, miss, if we consider our uncles and cousins. We did not come

altogether; brother John, who is dead, and uncle Mike, came first. And

a fine chance to work they got directly, miss; and then they sent

money to pay the old folk's passage. Our hearts gathered coorage and

strength at once, miss, and we thought, shure, the great throubles


生词表:
  • weakness [´wi:knis] 移动到这儿单词发声  n.虚弱;弱点,缺点   (初中英语单词)
  • portion [´pɔ:ʃən] 移动到这儿单词发声  n.嫁妆;命运 vt.分配   (初中英语单词)
  • childhood [´tʃaildhud] 移动到这儿单词发声  n.幼年(时代);早期   (初中英语单词)
  • unhappy [ʌn´hæpi] 移动到这儿单词发声  a.不幸的;不快乐的   (初中英语单词)
  • christ [kraist] 移动到这儿单词发声  n.基督 int.天啊!   (初中英语单词)
  • submit [səb´mit] 移动到这儿单词发声  vt.使服从;使忍受   (初中英语单词)
  • rarely [´reəli] 移动到这儿单词发声  ad.难得;非凡地   (初中英语单词)
  • probable [´prɔbəbəl] 移动到这儿单词发声  a.大概的n.很可能的事   (初中英语单词)
  • account [ə´kaunt] 移动到这儿单词发声  vi.说明 vt.认为 n.帐目   (初中英语单词)
  • prospect [´prɔspekt, prəs´pekt] 移动到这儿单词发声  n.景色;境界 v.勘察   (初中英语单词)
  • refuge [´refju:dʒ] 移动到这儿单词发声  v.&n.避难(所);庇护   (初中英语单词)
  • willing [´wiliŋ] 移动到这儿单词发声  a.情愿的,乐意的   (初中英语单词)
  • instruct [in´strʌkt] 移动到这儿单词发声  vt.教育;指导;通知   (初中英语单词)
  • unusual [ʌn´ju:ʒuəl] 移动到这儿单词发声  a.不平常的;异常的   (初中英语单词)
  • whatever [wɔt´evə] 移动到这儿单词发声  pron.&a.无论什么   (初中英语单词)
  • useless [´ju:sləs] 移动到这儿单词发声  a.无用的,无价值的   (初中英语单词)
  • suffering [´sʌfəriŋ] 移动到这儿单词发声  n.痛苦;灾害   (初中英语单词)
  • blessing [´blesiŋ] 移动到这儿单词发声  n.祝福   (初中英语单词)
  • assist [ə´sist] 移动到这儿单词发声  v.协助;援助;搀扶   (初中英语单词)
  • nicely [naisli] 移动到这儿单词发声  ad.恰好地;谨慎地   (初中英语单词)
  • violent [´vaiələnt] 移动到这儿单词发声  a.强暴的;猛烈的   (初中英语单词)
  • temper [´tempə] 移动到这儿单词发声  n.韧度 v.锻炼;调和   (初中英语单词)
  • dreadful [´dredful] 移动到这儿单词发声  a.可怕的;讨厌的   (初中英语单词)
  • earnest [´ə:nist] 移动到这儿单词发声  a.认真的 n.认真;诚恳   (初中英语单词)
  • anxious [´æŋkʃəs] 移动到这儿单词发声  a.担忧的;渴望的   (初中英语单词)
  • overcome [,əuvə´kʌm] 移动到这儿单词发声  vt.战胜,克服   (初中英语单词)
  • dislike [dis´laik] 移动到这儿单词发声  vt.&n.不喜爱,厌恶   (初中英语单词)
  • arrangement [ə´reindʒmənt] 移动到这儿单词发声  n.整理;排列;筹备   (初中英语单词)
  • convenient [kən´vi:niənt] 移动到这儿单词发声  a.方便的   (初中英语单词)
  • govern [´gʌvən] 移动到这儿单词发声  v.统治;控制;指导   (初中英语单词)
  • acquaintance [ə´kweintəns] 移动到这儿单词发声  n.相识;熟人,相识的人   (初中英语单词)
  • unlike [,ʌn´laik] 移动到这儿单词发声  a.不同的 prep.不象…   (初中英语单词)
  • evidently [´evidəntli] 移动到这儿单词发声  ad.明显地   (初中英语单词)
  • sympathy [´simpəθi] 移动到这儿单词发声  n.同情,怜悯   (初中英语单词)
  • lately [´leitli] 移动到这儿单词发声  ad.近来,不久前   (初中英语单词)
  • disgrace [dis´greis] 移动到这儿单词发声  n.耻辱 vt.玷辱;贬黜   (初中英语单词)
  • cripple [´kripəl] 移动到这儿单词发声  n.跛子 vt.使残疾   (高中英语单词)
  • thoughtful [´θɔ:tfəl] 移动到这儿单词发声  a.深思的;体贴的   (高中英语单词)
  • salvation [sæl´veiʃən] 移动到这儿单词发声  n.救助;拯救   (高中英语单词)
  • earnestly [´ə:nistli] 移动到这儿单词发声  ad.认真地;急切地   (高中英语单词)
  • learned [´lə:nid] 移动到这儿单词发声  a.有学问的,博学的   (高中英语单词)
  • lighten [´laitn] 移动到这儿单词发声  v.减轻;点亮;启发   (高中英语单词)
  • shoemaker [´ʃu:,meikə] 移动到这儿单词发声  n.鞋匠   (高中英语单词)
  • therein [ðeə´rin] 移动到这儿单词发声  ad.在那里,在其中   (高中英语单词)
  • hanging [´hæŋiŋ] 移动到这儿单词发声  n.绞刑 a.悬挂着的   (高中英语单词)
  • ireland [´aiələnd] 移动到这儿单词发声  n.爱尔兰   (高中英语单词)
  • protestant [´prɔtistənt] 移动到这儿单词发声  a.新教的 n.新教徒   (高中英语单词)
  • anxiously [´æŋkʃəsli] 移动到这儿单词发声  ad.挂念地;渴望地   (高中英语单词)
  • nursery [´nə:səri] 移动到这儿单词发声  n.托儿所;苗床;养鱼场   (高中英语单词)
  • awkward [´ɔ:kwəd] 移动到这儿单词发声  a.笨拙的;为难的   (高中英语单词)
  • decided [di´saidid] 移动到这儿单词发声  a.明显的;决定的   (高中英语单词)
  • repeated [ri´pi:tid] 移动到这儿单词发声  a.反复的;重复的   (高中英语单词)
  • streak [stri:k] 移动到这儿单词发声  n.纹理 v.用线条(条纹)   (高中英语单词)
  • monstrous [´mɔnstrəs] 移动到这儿单词发声  a.怪异的;庞大的   (高中英语单词)
  • singular [´siŋgjulə] 移动到这儿单词发声  a.单一的;非凡的   (高中英语单词)
  • imaginary [i´mædʒinəri] 移动到这儿单词发声  a.想象的;虚构的   (高中英语单词)
  • famine [´fæmin] 移动到这儿单词发声  n.饥荒   (高中英语单词)
  • rotten [´rɔtn] 移动到这儿单词发声  a.腐烂的;腐朽的   (高中英语单词)
  • edinburgh [´edinbərə] 移动到这儿单词发声  n.爱丁堡   (英语四级单词)
  • saviour [´seiviə] 移动到这儿单词发声  n.救星;救助者   (英语四级单词)
  • graciously [´greiʃəsli] 移动到这儿单词发声  ad.仁慈地,和蔼庄重地   (英语四级单词)
  • freckled [´frekld] 移动到这儿单词发声  a.有雀斑的,有斑点的   (英语四级单词)
  • incapable [in´keipəbəl] 移动到这儿单词发声  a.无能力的;不能的   (英语四级单词)
  • invalid [in´vælid] 移动到这儿单词发声  n.病人 a.无效的   (英语四级单词)
  • nought [nɔ:t] 移动到这儿单词发声  n.=naught   (英语四级单词)
  • dublin [´dʌblin] 移动到这儿单词发声  n.都柏林   (英语六级单词)
  • cheerfulness [´tʃiəfulnis] 移动到这儿单词发声  n.高兴,愉快   (英语六级单词)
  • posture [´pɔstʃə] 移动到这儿单词发声  n.姿势 v.故作姿态   (英语六级单词)
  • helplessness [´helplisnis] 移动到这儿单词发声  n.无能为力   (英语六级单词)
  • assured [ə´ʃuəd] 移动到这儿单词发声  a.确实的 n.被保险人   (英语六级单词)

  • 上传人 欢乐鱼 分享于 2017-06-26 18:26:12
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