The Song on the Ash-Cart

It was a bright morning in April, and the first song sparrow was busily practicing his cheery spring madrigal. Suddenly, not from the trees in the parkway, but from a near-by alley, came another tuneful pipe. This time the note was unmistakably the care-free whistle of one of the sons of men. The writer instinctively sought out the source of this latest melody, but before he found it the whistle had changed to a happy song; and a moment afterwards from the alley slowly came an ash-cart, and perched thereupon, clothes gray with ash-dust, was the singer! Singing on an ash-cart! One, of course, expected the newly arrived feathered choristers, swinging on a swaying limb, or basking in the bright sunshine, to voice their joyousness; but—singing on an ash-cart!

As the writer pondered this picture, two distinct conclusions were speedily reached: first, that here must be an ash-man who satisfied both his company and the company's patrons; and secondly, that he would not, in all probability, be driving that ash-cart very long. An employee who performs a disagreeable task cheerily is an asset to any employee and a positive joy to his customers. And the one who can "carry on" with a song in his heart or on his lips, when all about him is the evidence of material unloveliness, is surely destined inevitably to be lifted to higher labor.

The Sunday School
December 9, 1922

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