Wlliam Gilmore Simms
The Cub of the Panther: A Hunter Legend of the ''Old North State'' >> Chapter Three: How a Woman's Tongue Can Clear the Atmosphere by Pleasantly Disturbing It >> Page 58

image of pageExplore Inside

Page 58

Novel (Romance) | The University of Arkansas Press | 1997
Transcription 58 THE CUB OF THE PANTHER
interest in her brother, and had really sacrificed her own prejudices in
deference to his attachment. It was quite a struggle in her mind whether
it was proper to encourage him in his pursuit of Rose; as she had repeat-
edly said to her husband, and to Mike himself, she believed that if he
married Rose he would repent it "but once, and that was all his life." In
her own phrase, he "would be sorry for it as long as his head was hot."
But her warm regard for her brother, and the pain she felt in behold-
ing his suffering, prevailed over her prejudices, and she concluded, not
only to make her report as favorable as possible for his pursuit upon
the authority of Aunt Betsy, but to spare Rose and her airs and graces
as much as possible, suppressing all reference to what she deemed her
ill-behavior to herself during the recent visit.
She was not so indulgent, however, to the mother, and revenged her-
self for her forbearance in regard to the daughter, by dealing out a full
measure of indignation, scorn, and ridicule upon the head of that
stately and pretentious would-be lady of fashion.
"I forgive Rose Carter," she said, "for all her faults and foolish airs
and flammickins, which is nateral enough to young critters that hev the
misfortune to hev a most redickilous mother! It's that old, high-nose,
rheumatic fool that's filled the gal's head with feathers and vanity! If the
Lawd, in his blessed Providence, would only take off the old fool at onst,
the gal would soon come to her proper senses, pretickilarly as she's got
sich a good, sensible aunt like Betsy Moore to set her on the right track,
and start her off in the way to go! But, raally, so long as the old fool lives,
jist so long will she be twisting and turning poor Rose's head, ontill, at
last, it'll git quite round, and her eyes will be looking out of the back of
her head, when they ought to be in the front! Only to see her, as she sets
in her great padded rockin' chair, setting in state, and lolling back,
putting the scent bottle to her nose whenever you're speaking to her;
and shutting her eyes, as of she was hafe dead with listening to you; and
wiping her eyes, and nose, and face with a fine cambric hand'chief, and
bringing out a great sigh, and then the next minnit snubbing up good
Aunt Betsy for saying some words that aint in the dickshenary book!
Oh, it's so redickilous her airs and tantrums! But, Lawd love you, the
fun of it is when she speaks of her husband, the Old Squire Carter, and
kivers her eyes with her hand'chief, and says, `Rose, my love, 'spect my
immotions! Oh! my beloved spouse! my ever-lamented!' Ha! ha! ha!
when every body about the country knows how he used to beat her for
her conceits and vanities beat her with the broom-handle, preticklarly
when he was drunk and cantankerous! Why, it's knowing to all, how he