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a web of many textures

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Page 270


Every back is fitted for its burden,” said Mrs. Partington,
as she stood by the Congress Spring, from
which one had just emptied the eighth tumbler down
his spacious gullet, “and every stomach for its portion.
Heaven, that tempers the wind to the shorn lamb, I
dare say will likewise also temper the water to their
compassity to bear it; for we read that Apollos shall
water, and that the increase will be given, which must
mean Saratoga water, and the increase the debility to
hold it, though how folks can make a mill-race of their
elementary canal is more than I can see into.” Roger
stood looking at the victim, as tumbler after tumbler
disappeared, when he turned round to Mrs. Partington,
and asked her if she remembered what Macbeth said to
the Fifer, in the play. She could n't recall the name of
Macbeth, but remembered having heard the name of
Macaboy somewhere mentioned. He told her that the
remark alluded to applied to the scene then enacting;
for the hard drinkers seemed to be saying, by their
acts, “Damned be he who first cries, Hold enough.” —
“I think they all hold too much,” remarked the dame.
Roger nodded, and smiled, saying, “And need damming,
too.” Ike stood watching the boy who drew up the
water, pocketing the half-dimes so coolly, and wondered
what he was going to buy with all his money, thinking
how he could make it fly, if he had it. He had invested
all his available funds in red crackers, and had n't a cent
to bless himself with.


Page 271