The Impossible Yesterday by
She was a tiny girl, playing by herself in a wide, grassy yard. The
older children had gone to school, but she, too young for that, was
busying herself with putting in order a playhouse in an arbor—arranging
it as nearly as possible as it had been the day before, when she and two
or three little mates had enjoyed such a merry time there. To and fro
trudged the tireless feet, patiently the small hands worked, and at last
all was complete. Then the young worker looked about her, and slowly a
shadow of disappointment crept over the face that had been so eager.
Something was lacking. Everything was in the remembered order, but it
did not seem the same. She studied it for a minute or two, then walked
away and sat down on a sunny doorstep. The mother found her there a
little later, a listless, quiet little figure.
"Are you tired of your playhouse already, dear?" she asked.
The childish eyes were uplifted with a look of wistful wonder in them,
and the answer came slowly.
"I can't do it—I can't make yesterday over again."
It was the hopeless task that in one form or another we all undertake,
and with which many darken their whole lives because they will not learn
that it is an impossible one. Yesterday's roses died with the day,
yesterday's manna was only for yesterday's need, but there are new
flowers and new food for to-day from the same gracious hand that
bestowed the other, if only we will go cheerfully and trustingly
forward. The treasures and pleasures we have had are for memory and
thanksgiving, but the moment we sit down beside them to grieve or to try
to reconstruct them out of their ruins we have changed them from a
blessing to a hindrance. We cannot make yesterday over again.