Tracks Of A Rolling Stone By Henry J. Coke


Why, it may be asked, did I not try to cross where I had 
intended?  I must confess my want - Page 220
Tracks Of A Rolling Stone By Henry J. Coke - Page 220 of 404 - First - Home

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Why, It May Be Asked, Did I Not Try To Cross Where I Had Intended?

I must confess my want of courage.

True, the river here was not half, not a third, of the width of the scene of my disasters; but I was weak in body and in mind. Had anything human been on the other side to see me - to see how brave I was, (alas! poor human nature!) - I could have plucked up heart to risk it. It would have been such a comfort to have some one to see me drown! But it is difficult to play the hero with no spectators save oneself. I shall always have a fellow-feeling with the Last Man: practically, my position was about as uncomfortable as his will be.

One of the worst features of it was, what we so often suffered from before - the inaccessibility of water. The sun was broiling, and the and soil reflected its scorching rays. I was feverish from exhaustion, and there was nothing, nothing to look forward to. Mile after mile I crawled along, sometimes half disposed to turn back, and try the deep but narrow passage; then that inexhaustible fountain of last hopes - the Unknown - tempted me to go forward. I persevered; when behold! as I passed a rock, an Indian stood before me.

He was as naked as I was. Over his shoulder he carried a spear as long as a salmon rod. Though neither had foreseen the other, he was absolutely unmoved, showed no surprise, no curiosity, no concern.

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