Uncle Tom's Cabin
In Which It Appears That a Senator Is But a Man
The light of the cheerful fire shone on the rug and carpet of a cosey parlor, and glittered
on the sides of the tea-cups and well-brightened tea-pot, as Senator Bird was drawing off
his boots, preparatory to inserting his feet in a pair of new handsome slippers, which his
wife had been working for him while away on his senatorial tour. Mrs. Bird, looking the
very picture of delight, was superintending the arrangements of the table, ever and anon
mingling admonitory remarks to a number of frolicsome juveniles, who were
effervescing in all those modes of untold gambol and mischief that have astonished
mothers ever since the flood.
"Tom, let the door-knob alone,--there's a man! Mary! Mary! don't pull the cat's tail,--poor
pussy! Jim, you mustn't climb on that table,--no, no!--You don't know, my dear, what a
surprise it is to us all, to see you here tonight!" said she, at last, when she found a space to
say something to her husband.
"Yes, yes, I thought I'd just make a run down, spend the night, and have a little comfort at
home. I'm tired to death, and my head aches!"
Mrs. Bird cast a glance at a camphor-bottle, which stood in the half-open closet, and
appeared to meditate an approach to it, but her husband interposed.
"No, no, Mary, no doctoring! a cup of your good hot tea, and some of our good home
living, is what I want. It's a tiresome business, this legislating!"
And the senator smiled, as if he rather liked the idea of considering himself a sacrifice to
"Well," said his wife, after the business of the tea-table was getting rather slack, "and
what have they been doing in the Senate?"
Now, it was a very unusual thing for gentle little Mrs. Bird ever to trouble her head with
what was going on in the house of the state, very wisely considering that she had enough
to do to mind her own. Mr. Bird, therefore, opened his eyes in surprise, and said,
"Not very much of importance."
"Well; but is it true that they have been passing a law forbidding people to give meat and
drink to those poor colored folks that come along? I heard they were talking of some such
law, but I didn't think any Christian legislature would pass it!"
"Why, Mary, you are getting to be a politician, all at once."