Anne of Avonlea
An Adventure on the Tory Road
"Anne," said Davy, sitting up in bed and propping his chin on his hands, "Anne, where is
sleep? People go to sleep every night, and of course I know it's the place where I do the
things I dream, but I want to know WHERE it is and how I get there and back without
knowing anything about it . . . and in my nighty too. Where is it?"
Anne was kneeling at the west gable window watching the sunset sky that was like a
great flower with petals of crocus and a heart of fiery yellow. She turned her head at
Davy's question and answered dreamily,
"'Over the mountains of the moon,
Down the valley of the shadow.'"
Paul Irving would have known the meaning of this, or made a meaning out of it for
himself, if he didn't; but practical Davy, who, as Anne often despairingly remarked,
hadn't a particle of imagination, was only puzzled and disgusted.
"Anne, I believe you're just talking nonsense."
"Of course, I was, dear boy. Don't you know that it is only very foolish folk who talk
sense all the time?"
"Well, I think you might give a sensible answer when I ask a sensible question," said
Davy in an injured tone.
"Oh, you are too little to understand," said Anne. But she felt rather ashamed of saying
it; for had she not, in keen remembrance of many similar snubs administered in her own
early years, solemnly vowed that she would never tell any child it was too little to
understand? Yet here she was doing it . . . so wide sometimes is the gulf between
theory and practice.
"Well, I'm doing my best to grow," said Davy, "but it's a thing you can't hurry much. If
Marilla wasn't so stingy with her jam I believe I'd grow a lot faster."
"Marilla is not stingy, Davy," said Anne severely. "It is very ungrateful of you to say such
"There's another word that means the same thing and sounds a lot better, but I don't
just remember it," said Davy, frowning intently. "I heard Marilla say she was it, herself,
the other day."
"If you mean ECONOMICAL, it's a VERY different thing from being stingy. It is an
excellent trait in a person if she is economical. If Marilla had been stingy she wouldn't