NOTHING IN LIFE is alien to you: I was a penniless girl from Summum Who stepped from the morning train in Spoon River. All the houses stood before me with closed doors And drawn shades—l was barred out; I had no place or part in any of them. And I walked past the old McNeely mansion, A castle of stone ‘mid walks and gardens With workmen about the place on guard And the County and State upholding it For its lordly owner, full of pride. I was so hungry I had a vision: I saw a giant pair of scissors Dip from the sky, like the beam of a dredge, And cut the house in two like a curtain. But at the “Commercial” I saw a man, Who winked at me as I asked for work— It was Wash McNeely's son. He proved the link in the chain of title To half my ownership of the mansion, Through a breach of promise suit—the scissors. So, you see, the house, from the day I was born, Was only waiting for me.