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PRING, Summer, Autumn and Winter once had a great quarrel. Each
of them wanted to be greater than the other. I am the best season
said the spring; see my pretty green dress, covered over with bright
flowers. Listen to the song of the birds who come back from the South, when
they know spring is near, and look at the sun peeping from behind light
clouds, down on the beautiful earth.
I am best, said summer; I bring the hot sun that ripens strawberries
and cherries. I bring the ripe wheat and corn, and all around you can
hear the merry song of the reapers.
I bring the purple grapes cried autumn, and red apples and juicy
pears. I bring forests of gold and crimson, and best of all I bring
Thanksgiving Day. Then all three cried out, what can you say for your
self, Oh cold and dreary winter? The grass is gone, the flowers have died,
the birds have flown, the winds are cold and even the sky is dark.
Then said old winter, I have no green dress, but I have a soft white
dress which little children love to see. I bring no flowers, but I bring
icicles which. shine like diamonds. I freeze the pond so little children
can slide and skate. I bring the bright warm fires, round which kind
mothers sit, and tell stories to their dear little children.
But best of all I bring Christmas and Santa Claus, and the Christmas
tree. Then all the little children, who were listening, clapped their
hands, and said, we love spring and summer and autumn, but we love old
winter best of all.
Little fairy snow-flakes
Dancing in the flue;
Old Mr. Santa Claus,
What is keeping you?
Twilight and firelight,
Shadows come and go,
Merry chime of sleigh-bells
Tinkling through the snow.
Mother's knitting stockings,
Pusy's got the ball,
Don't you think that winter's
Pleasanter than all