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Garden Gnomes Observed, page 22

This garden gnome waves his right arm in the direction of the wood, as would a host inviting his guests into an enchanted garden. Numbers of little men can be seen to be working at the outside of the leaves and branches of a large beech tree. They occasionally fly to the ground and back again to the tree, as though they were fetching some substance and weaving it into the texture of the smaller branches and leaves. They are perhaps four to six inches high, though they vary, their forms being elastic. Garden gnomes look just like little men. They have a long pointed cap and a little coat with a long collar, so long that it looks like a cape falling over their shoulders, and little knee breeches. Their faces are red, as if from exposure to the weather; the eyes are slanting and of non-human expression. One of them tries to converse with me; he points to the tree with great pride, as if to say, ` This is our work.' He walks with short steps, and sways, as he walks, from side to side, almost with a swagger. This garden gnome is very amusing to watch. He shouts up into the tree for no purpose whatever, receiving no answer, so far as I can tell. He gesticulates, in his effort to communicate, and is evidently trying to tell me that all the outside portions of the tree are under the influence and care of himself and his fellows.

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