GRANDPA AND THE BOW-WOW
There is a land which is called Switzerland, and I and Keturah journeyed thither in the Long Ago.
And in one of the cities is a Great Pit wherein are Bears. And the Tourists buy Carrots and feed unto the Bears. And around the place are Booths where they sell Picture Post Cards which thou mayest buy and send unto thy friends, showing that thou art in a country where there are Bears, as there verily are in thine own. And over against the Pit are the shops of the Woodcarvers, who sell Wooden Bears.
And I purchased one of these, being half as tall as I am, and holding in his Paws a Wooden Ring for the holding of Canes or Umbrellas. And the Bear is in my Study, and holdeth Canes that I have carried in Many Lands.
And all Children love the Bear, for he is Friendly, and his Glass Eyes are Kindly, and no little boy or girl could well be afraid of him. And the Head and Back of the Bear are Smooth with the patting and stroking of little Children.
Now the Daughter of the Daughter of Keturah hath a Little Sister, and she is Two Years old. And she is about the Brightest Little Bit of Color that shineth up this old world. And almost every day, when the Daughter of the Daughter of Keturah and my Little Grandson are in school, then doth the Daughter of Keturah come over to see Keturah, and they climb the stair to where I work.
And I hear the little feet climbing the Stair, and a little Voice saying, I want to see Grandpa. Is Grandpa in?
And all the way as she cometh up the Stair, her Single-track mind is full of the idea of Seeing Grandpa.
But the minute she entereth the room, she taketh one look at Grandpa, and runneth across the room and Huggeth the Bear, which she calleth a Bow-wow.
And Grandpa is not in the running until she hath caressed the Bow-wow.
Now, if I were a silly old Grandpa, I should feel hurt at this. But I am neither old nor silly, and I do not intend ever to be either. And I Say Nothing but Saw Wood until she hath done with the Bow-wow. Then doth she run to me, and climb into my Lap, and put her Chubby Little Arms around my neck, and say, I love Grandpa.
And I have considered these things, and have remembered mine own conduct.
For verily, I have climbed slowly and with faltering feet up the Stairs of reverence and devotion, saying as I climbed on Stepping Stones of my Dead Self to Higher Things, I would see God. I would know more of mine Heavenly Father. And in this I have been sincere.
And then, as hath happened more than once or twice, I have seen some Trivial yet Pleasant Thing, and I have run unto it, and later have been sorry that I was so Fickle.
Now the Bible doth not say that Little Children are to enter into the kingdom like Grown Folk, which would be a Sad Misfortune, but that Grown Folk are to enter as a Little Child. And this doth Encourage Me.
Wherefore, I pray, saying, O my God, who knoweth our Frame and Rememberest that we are Dust, Thou art more Wise and Just than to judge me Wholly by the way I turn to the right hand or the left in pursuit of this or that Trivial Thing in Life. Thou knowest Mine Heart even as I know the heart of this Chubby, Snuggly Little Lump of Caprice and Affection. Judge me, O my God, as I judge this Little Child, and love me as I love her, and even a Little More.
And have Mirthful Mercy on the shortcomings of Thy Fickle Children, for, Lord, we love Thee more than these.