It was a simple air; she had never known the words.
With loving instinct she softened every note, until Raff almost fancied that his two-year-old baby was once more beside him.
As soon as the song was finished, Hans mounted a wooden stool and began to rummage in the cupboard.
"Have a care, Hans," said Dame Brinker, who through all her poverty was ever a tidy housewife. "Have a care, the wine is there at your right and the white bread beyond it."
"Never fear, Mother," answered Hans, reaching far back on an upper shelf. "I shall do no mischief."
Jumping down, he walked toward his father and placed an oblong block of pine wood in his hands. One of its ends was rounded off, and some deep cuts had been made on the top.
"Do you know what that is, Father?" asked Hans.
Raff Brinker's face brightened. "Indeed I do, boy! It is the boat I was making you yest--alack, not yesterday, but years ago."