1130 A PICTURE-BOOK WITHOUT PICTURES
not help her down, and that is why she was crying. The doll must certainly have been crying too, for she stretched out her arms among the green branches, and looked quite mournful. Yes, these are the troubles of life of which the little girl had often heard tell. Alas, poor doll! it began to grow dark already ; and night would soon come on ! Was she to be left sitting there alone on the bough all night long ? No, the little maid could not make up her mind to that. " I'll stay with you," she said, although she felt anything but happy in her mind. She could almost fancy she distinctly saw little gnomes, with their high-crowned hats, sitting in the bushes ; and farther back in the long walk, tall spectres appeared to be dancing. They came nearer and nearer, and stretched out their hands towards the tree on which the doll sat; they laughed scornfully, and pointed at her with their fingers. Oh, how frightened the little maid was ! " But if one has not done anything wrong," she thought, " nothing evil can harm one. I wonder if I have done anything wrong ? " And she considered. " Oh, yes ! I laughed at the poor duck with the red rag on her leg ; she limped along so funnily, I could not help laughing ; but it's a sin to laugh at animals." And she looked up at the doll. '' Did you laugh at animals ? " she asked; and it seemed as if the doll shook her head.'
' I looked down on Tyrol,' said the Moon, * and my beams caused the dark pines to throw long shadows upon the rocks. I looked at the pictures of St. Christopher carrying the Infant Jesus that are painted there upon the walls of the houses, colossal figures reaching from the ground to the roof. St. Florian was represented pouring water on the burning house, and the Lord hung bleeding on the great cross by the wayside. To the present generation these are old pictures, but I saw when they were put up, and marked how one followed the other. On the brow of the mountain yonder is perched, like a swallow's nest, a lonely con vent of nuns. Two of the sisters stood up in the tower tolling the bell; they were both young, and therefore their glances flew over the mountain out into the world.