Prelude
 

Yonder up in the hills are men and women, white-haired, who love to tell of that time when the woods came to the door-step and God's cattle fed on the growing corn. Where, long ago, they sowed their youth and strength, they see their sons reaping, but now, bent with age, they have ceased to gather save in the far fields of memory. Every day they go down the long, well-trodden path and come back with hearts full. They are as children plucking the meadows of June. Sit with them awhile, and they will gather for you the unfading flowers of joy and love--good sir! the world is full of them. And should they mention Trove or a certain clock tinker that travelled from door to door in the olden time, send your horse to the stable and God-speed them!--it is a long tale, and you may listen far into the night.

"See the big pines there in the dale yonder?" some one will ask. "Well, Theron Allen lived there, an' across the pond, that's where the moss trail came out and where you see the cow-path--that's near the track of the little red sleigh."

Then--the tale and its odd procession coming out of the far past.