ONE Christmas eve, as Deacon Brown 

Was homeward going from the town,

A snow-flake fell upon his nose.

Said he: "Well, I declare! It snows!

If it will only snow all night,

'Twill give the children such delight.

Ah! Yes, they'll think it jolly fun;

But there is many a shivering one

Will not be glad the snow to see.

How many poor there are! Ah, me!

Now there is poor old Widow Burr; '

I ought to have remembered her

And tried to manage in some way

To make her happy Christmas day.

I'll do it yet! I'll send some coal

Tomorrow morning, yes, indeed, 

And other things that she may need."

And onward cheerily, he went,

His heart aglow with kind intent.

Just at that time another flake,

As big and cold and wide-awake,

Fell plump on farmer Button's eye,

As he was looking at the sky,

To find what might the prospect be

Of a clear Christmas day. Cried he:

"As sure as I live, it's going to snow!

Don't know as it's much matter, though.

The fowls are comfortable, I guess.

They're well penned in, and I confess

There hain't nobody round here got

A bigger nor a finer lot

Of fowls than I. And neighbor Glenn, 

Don't believe he's even got a hen

For Christmas dinner, they're so poor.

Now 'twouldn't hurt me, to be sure,

To take a turkey over there;

And chicken too, or perhaps a pair.

I reckon more you likely 't would

Do all of 'em a power of good.

I'll do it, sure's I live," said he.

"One merry Christmas they shall see."

And out he went with eager will,

His kindly purpose to fulfill.

Another frosty snow-flake fell

Upon the hand of bright-eyed Nell,

As she was passing out the doors

Of one of the bright, crowded stores.

"Ah! Snow!" said she. "Well, let it snow;

I've not much further now to go."

Into her muff her hand she slipped,

And, as she onward gaily tripped,

She thought: "How nice a muff to hold

And keep one's hands from snow and cold!

There's cousin Minnie, she has none;

Uncle's too poor to get her one.

I wish she had nice things, like me.

Why, I do declare! Just let me see!

Why could not I buy her a muff!

I think I've money left enough.

I'll buy it now, this very night,

And send it round at morning light,

Before she's fairly out of bed."

And on her errand kind she sped.

While boot-black Jimmie stopped to hear

Some Christmas carols, on his ear

A snow-flake fell. Cried he: "Hallo!

Hurrah! Hurrah! It's going to snow!

I'll tell yer that'll be just gay.

But there's poor little sister May

A-lyin' there so sick in bed

She can't so much as lift her head;

She couldn't see it, if't did snow.

Too bad! She allers loved it so.

Look here! I know jes what I'll do.

As soon as that there singin's through,

I'll take that bit of ev'green tree

Here in the street right home with me,

An' fix it up somewhere real straight;

An' don't I hope 'twill snow fust-rate

All night, an' cover it with snow!

An' wont it please her mighty though,

To see me fetchin' of it in?

'T will make her chirker than she's been

Since she was took. An' I declare,

I guess I've got some cash to spare,

To buy somethin' uncommon sweet

An' temptin' like for her to eat.

An' she shall have a Christmas, too,

The same as other peoples do."

So when he'd heard the singing out,

His loving plans he went about.

But oh! 'twould take a week to tell 

The good the snow-flakes, as they fell, 

Did all unconsciously achieve 

Upon that merry Christmas eve, 

What suffering ones they brought to mind, 

What hearts they moved with impulse kind, 

What chains of selfishness they broke, 

What Christ-like charity they woke, 

What tender thoughts they multiplied, 

What close-shut purses opened wide; 

And hearts there were that never knew 

How much the snow-flakes had to do 

With their unwonted happiness. 

Such power have little things to bless.

Fanny Penival.