Uncle Tom's Cabin, Young Folks' Edition HTML version
6. Uncle Tom Says Good-Bye
The day after the hunt for Eliza was a very sad one in Uncle Tom's cabin. It was the day
on which Haley was going to take Uncle Tom away.
Aunt Chloe had been up very early. She had washed and ironed all Tom's clothes, and
packed his trunk neatly. Now she was cooking the breakfast,—the last breakfast she
would ever cook for her dear husband. Her eyes were quite red and swollen with crying,
and the tears kept running down her cheeks all the time.
'It's the last time,' said Tom sadly.
Aunt Chloe could not answer. She sat down, buried her face in her hands, and sobbed
'S'pose we must be resigned. But, O Lord, how can I? If I knew anything where you was
goin', or how they'd treat you! Missis says she'll try and buy you back again in a year or
two. But, Lor', nobody never comes back that goes down there.'
'There'll be the same God there, Chloe, that there is here.'
'Well,' said Aunt Chloe, 's'pose dere will. But the Lord lets drefful things happen
sometimes. I don't seem to get no comfort dat way.'
'Let's think on our mercies,' said Tom, in a shaking voice.
'Mercies!' said Aunt Chloe, 'don't see any mercies in 't. It isn't right! it isn't right it should
be so! Mas'r never ought to have left it so that ye could be took for his debts. Mebbe he
can't help himself now, but I feel it's wrong. Nothing can beat that out of me. Such a
faithful crittur as ye've been, reckonin' on him more than your own wife and chil'en.'
'Chloe! now, if ye love me, you won't talk so, when it is perhaps jest the last time we'll
ever have together,' said Tom.
'Wall, anyway, there's wrong about it somewhere,' said Aunt Chloe, 'I can't jest make out
where 'tis. But there is wrong somewhere, I'm sure of that.'
Neither Tom nor Chloe could eat any breakfast; their hearts were too full of sorrow. But
the little children, who hardly understood what was happening, enjoyed theirs. It was not
often that they had such a fine one as Chloe had cooked for Tom's last morning at home.
Breakfast was just finished, when Mrs. Shelby came. Chloe was not very pleased to see
her. She was angry, and blamed her for letting Tom be sold.
But Mrs. Shelby did not seem to see Aunt Chloe's angry looks. 'Tom,' she said, turning to
him, 'I come to—' she could say no more, she was crying so bitterly.
Then all Aunt Chloe's anger faded away.