THUD! Thud! Went the ax, brought down by John's strong right arm, and young Webster stood watching. 

"What are you cutting that tree down for?" he asked at last. 

"Dead!" said John promptly—"not worth a red cent! We've coaxed it and puttered around it for weeks, and it didn't do a mite of good—kept getting more dead-looking all the time; and it made the other tree look bad, and kept the sun from it, and was a nuisance generally; so down it comes!" 

"What are you going to do with it?" 

"Chop it up for kindling-wood. It will start the kitchen fires forever so long. It is good to burn, and that's about every identical thing it is good for." 

"Yes," said Webster; "I read about it." 

"Read about it?" said John, much astonished. 

"You don't say this old tree has got into the papers, do you?" 

"It's in a book," said Webster:" 'Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down and cast into the fire.' That's exactly what it said, and that's what you are doing." 

"That's true enough," said John; and he said not another word, but he thought about it a good deal; for away back in his childhood, one day when he sat in a chair that was too high for him, and swung his feet, he studied over and over those words in his Sabbath-school lesson; he knew just who said them, what came next, and how Jesus made the trees stand for men, though he had not thought of it before in years. 

"John," said Webster, "it wouldn't be nice to be chopped down good for nothing, would it?" 

‘‘No more it wouldn't," said John.

—The Pansy.