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  • Writer's pictureLinda Odhner, with photos by Liz Kufs

Excerpted Inspirations #43

"Everyone took a look, and then Dan showed them the lovely plumage on a moth's wing, the four feathery corners to a hair, the veins on a leaf, hardly visible to the naked eye, but like a thick net through the wonderful little glass; the skin on their own fingers, looking like queer hills and valleys; a cobweb like a bit of coarse sewing silk, and the sting of a bee.

"'It's like the fairy spectacles in my story-book, only more curious,' said Demi, enchanted with the wonders he saw.

"'Dan is a magician now, and he can show you many miracles going on all around you; for he has two things needful -- patience and love of nature. We live in a beautiful and wonderful world, Demi, and the more you know about it the wiser and better you will be. This little glass will give you a

new set of teachers, and you may learn fine lessons from them if you will,' said Mr. Bhaer, glad to see how interested the boys were in the matter.

"'Could I see anybody's soul with this microscope if I looked hard?' asked Demi, who was much impressed with the power of the bit of glass.

"'No, dear; it's not powerful enough for that, and never can be made so. You must wait a long while before your eyes are clear enough to see the most invisible of God's wonders. But looking at the lovely things you can see will help you to understand the lovelier things you can not see,' answered Uncle Fritz, with his hand on the boy's head."

-Louisa May Alcott, Little Men (1901), pp.268-269

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