ETHEL LANSING was a bright, intelligent girl, but instead of making the most of present moments in performing little loving deeds of kindness, she was somewhat of a daydreamer. To snuggle up in a great armchair and plan what she would do if she were rich or a little older, was, with her, a favorite way of passing time.

"What, cuddled up in the armchair and not doing anything!" said Mrs. Lansing, as she passed through the sitting room. "You would better go and help Nora amuse the baby, or get your work."

"O mamma, I was wishing so much that I could do some real brave thing, was rich and could scatter lots of money among the poor, or was old enough to go off upon some foreign mission, as Mrs. Wright is now preparing to do, and everybody talking of her self-sacrificing spirit. Wouldn't it be splendid, if I could do something of the kind?"

"Again day-dreaming, I see, Ethel, and forgetting present duties," replied her mother, with a grave shake of the head. "Don't you think the best way is to improve your present opportunities for doing good?"

"Why, you surely don't call amusing the baby or finishing Kittie's apron doing good? "

"Anything that can add to the happiness of those about you, my child, is more commendable than looking forward to an uncertain future to better yourself, as you imagine. Shall I tell you an Indian legend?"

"An Indian legend?" asked Ethel, in wondering surprise. "Yes, mamma. I always like your 'illustrative stories,' as you call them."

"There was once a beautiful Indian girl upon whom one of the good genii wished to bestow a blessing. He led her to the edge of a large field of corn, where he said to her:

"'Daughter, in the field before us the ears of corn, in the hands of those who pluck them in faith, shall have talismanic virtues, and the virtue shall be in proportion to the size and beauty of the ear gathered. Thou shalt pass through the field but once, and pluck just one ear. It must be taken as thou goest forward, and thou shalt not stop in thy path, nor shalt thou retrace a single step in quest of thine object.

Select an ear full and fair, and according to its size and beauty shall be its value to thee as a talisman.'

"The maiden thanked the good genius, and then set forward upon her quest. As she advanced, she saw many ears of corn, large, ripe, and beautiful, such as calm judgment might have told her would possess virtues enough; but in her eagerness to grasp the very best, she left those fair ears behind, hoping she might find one still fairer. At length, as the day was closing, she reached a part of the field where the stalks were shorter and thinner, and the ears very thin and shriveled.

"Winnona now regretted the grand ears she had left behind, and disdained to pick from the poor show that surrounded her, for here she found not an ear which bore perfect grain. She went on, but alas! Only to find the stalks more and more feeble and blighted, until in the end, as the day was closing and the night coming on, she found herself at the end of the field, without having plucked an ear of any kind.

"No need that the good genius should rebuke her for her folly. She saw it clearly when too late, as how many, in all climes and in all ages, in the evening of life, have sadly and regretfully called to mind the thousand golden opportunities forever lost because they were not plucked in season."  Ethel readily saw the point to her mother's illustrative story, and at once exclaimed:

"You think I am going through the field like Winnona, seeking for something better, and by-and-by will be sorry that I did not pluck some good ear of corn near at hand."


in Child's Paper.