Seite:Marsh Hallig 1856.djvu/55

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55

THE CITY BELLE.

had longed with such a feeling of home-sickness, the soil
upon which alone he could be happy, from which to
tear himself again would be impossible. For this home
he had struggled and toiled in distant lands. The
thought of it had stimulated him to unwearied activity,
to the most ready obedience, to the most earnest zeal
in the fulfillment of all his duties ; had restrained him
from all the enjoyments of his class and incessantly
admonished him to practice the most careful economy.
Every new accession to his little treasury, which he al-
ways carried about him, and had therefore preserved
through this last peril, had been the commencement
of a new dream of a happy return to which he on
such occasions surrendered himself for hours. Only his
desire for improvement, his efforts to obtain an educa-
tion above his condition, could induce him occasionally
to draw upon his earnings, but he economized all the
more rigidly to make up for such outlays. Now he had
reached it. There stood the paternal roof. A thrill
passed through his frame and tears of joy moistened
his cheek. A stranger who could have seen that naked
tract, with its scanty grass half buried in the mud of
the late inundation, and its deeply washed and shat-
tered wharves, and called to mind the preceding night
which had brought so near to death every thing upon
the island, would never have suspected that such a
home could draw from the young man tears of joy.
But for this sight Godber had endured for nine years
a life of toil and danger full of privation and self-denial,
and had it been twenty years that he had so suffered
and toiled, he would not have thought his return too
dearly bought.