230 My Brother Theodore Roosevelt
Lincoln, lover of America, who lived under the roof which symbolized all that America means to her children. As I went up the White House steps, he blew out of the door, dressed for his ride on horseback. His horse and that of a companion were waiting for him. He came smilingly toward me, welcomed me, and said: "Edie has had to go to Philadelphia for the night to visit Nellie Tyler, so we are all alone, and I have ordered dinner out on the back porch, for it is so warm and lovely, and there is a full moon, and I thought we could be so quiet there. I have so much to tell you. All sorts of political things have happened during your absence, and besides that I have learned several new poems of Kipling and Swinburne, and I feel like reciting them to you in the moonlight!" "How perfectly lovely," I replied, "and when shall I see you about Porto Rico?" A slight frown came on his brow, and he said, "Certainly not to-night," and then rather sternly: "You have your appointment at nine o'clock to-morrow morning in the office to discuss business matters." Then with a returning smile: "I will be back pretty soon. Good-by." And he jumped on his horse and clattered away toward Rock Creek.
It all came true, although it almost seemed like a fairy-tale. We had that dinner d deux on the lovely portico at the rear of the White House looking toward the Washington Monumentthat portico was beautifully reproduced by Sargent's able brush for Mrs. Roosevelt later-and under the great, soft moon, with the scent of shrub and flower in the air, he recited Kipling and Swinburne, and then falling into more serious vein, gave me a vivid description of some difficulty he had had with Congress, which had refused to receive a certain message which he had written and during the interval between the sending of it and their final decision to receive it, he had shut himself up in his library, glad to have a moment of unexpected leisure, and had written an essay, which he had long desired to write, on the Irish sagas. The moon had waned and the stars were brighter and deeper before we left the portico. We