National Geographic : 1918 Jul
THE NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC MAGAZINE Courtesy of the American Red Cross A TRIBUTE TO A SLEEPING HERO did the walking. Thanks awfully for the posy." The shadows are lengthening on the wall, as I noiselessly leave this room of sorrow. From a little way down the hall, along with the pleasant clatter of alumi num dishes and knives and forks, comes the unmistakable smell of chicken gravy. The inmates of Geographic Ward No. I are already sitting up and taking notice. Soon the wheeled serving table stops be fore their door, and the funny boy, who, according to his own statement, "tried to stop a shell with his hand," jumps up to help. He wants me to know that there is rice to go with the gravy, and white bread, and new peas, and lettuce, and milk, and mixed stewed fruit. I notice that boys whose bones are commencing to knit are also beginning to recover their appetites. And I can't help saying, "It COULD be worse, couldn't it, Yanks ?" The busy helper licks a finger and, ges ticulating grandly with a dripping spoon, bursts forth like this: "Say, lady, listen: When you haven't seen a razor for so long that your face looks like a barbed-wire entanglement; when you haven't had a drop of water except inside for four days; when you 'get yours' and somebody carries you over thousands of miles of bumps in a road; when the doctor plugs you up and says NEXT; when you're squeezed in a train for two days and two nights; when the ambulance lands you here and you say good-by to your muddy outfit and your underwear that walks; when you're bathed and combed and your teeth are washed; when your fresh, white bandage doesn't show a single drop of blood; when you're put in a bed with sheets and a regular pillow, and the nurse comes round and gives you a pat just for luck and hands you something good to drink out of a cup; when you lie back and stretch out your legs and close your eyes-SAY, fellows! Ain't it a gr-rand n-glo-ryus feeling? And say-just give a guess as to how we feel toward the members of this here National Geo graphic Society."