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inspiration for every writer's characteristics, and so I suppose I must say that Mrs. Dandridge is devoted to the nature studies of John Burroughs, and to the nature poems of Wordsworth. But she is also a close reader of Shakespeare, who belongs no more to the woods and fields and hills than to courts, taverns and the high seas. I prefer to think that Mrs. Dandridge is a poet in herself and apart from the influence of books.
J. E. B.
What the forests utter,
With incessant souri; What the caverns mutier,
Rumbling underground. What the crag reveals
Where man never trod: What the abyss conceals
Of the ways of God.
TO A, S, D.
What the eagle calls
To the wild glen:
What the wolf yells;
The owl's hooting tells.
We are akin, dear soul:
Akin as are the rainbow in the sky, The runnel on the knoll:
We are akin in spirit, you and I. Ah! how serene and bright!
You stand with shining feet,
And lustrous arch complete
You catch the light of heaven and repeat
But I am like the stream That hurries down the knoll,
As changeful as a dream: As restless and as wild
As an impatient child: Yet thankful, dear, if in some tranquil space, I may reflect the radiance of your face.
What the hawk screameth
Over her nest:
In mother's breast.
In a pleasant voice;
Why the birds rejoice.
Why the flowers fade;
Why the earthworm dies;
Change to butterflies.
Or the violet;
Is with tear-drops wet.
TO A POET.
IF thou art a poet-son of God
Fix upon the heights thy steadfast glance; Listen with quick ear to catch His word;
Speak, as He shall give thee utterance.
Speak what earth unseals to thee,
In their meeting crash;
Of the lightning flash.
What the mind guesses,
Day after day, Through dim recesses
Groping its way.
Each unto each;
In silver speech.
That do thou teach.
Why the strong sun sets
And the planets rise; Why the rainbow spans
The wet summer skies;
Let thine inspiration,
Thy wisdom, be What all God's Creation
Calleth to thee.
Come, dear Desire, and walk with me;
We'll watch, how since the morning rain The spider sitteth at her loom,
To weave her silken nets again. I know a field where bluets blow
Like frost from fingers of the night, And in a sheltered coppice grow Arbutus trailers, blush and white.
To holy beauty, yet didst meek obey
up higher"; Thou who our listening hearts didst greatly
sway With magic of thy flute-toned, artful lay: When, like thy Master, thou wast “clean fore
spent," Laidst calmly down thy clear-voiced instrument. How grandly now thy spirit, with no clod
Of frail and feeble flesh to hold her back, Vill follow through eternity thy God
In his vast, glorious, and harmonious track!
Then let a song for soothing float
Where blows no breath of earthly care,
- The Endvmion of Keats.
Alas! I have an ancient enemy,
We have cries, we have laughter:
Comes silently after.
Though none hear her tread;
By all the many signs of Love;
By all Love's truth, I know
I pray you tell me so.
We join our clinging hands;
A spirit barrier stands.
That keep our souls apart;
-Let Down the Bars.
JAMES JEFFREY ROCHE.
and leave great causes alone, unless they have overwhelmed him of his nature and their own will. The witty secretary of the Papyrus Club is undedicated, however he should deny it, and liegeman to no theory, at heart. He sends his gallant and unbookish fancies on profane errands.
"Some to the wars, to seek their fortune there,
Some to discover islands, far away.' Mr. Roche is, first, a scrivener and chronicler, utterly impersonal, full of joy in deeds, a discerner between the expedient and the everlasting right, wholly fitted to throw into enduring song some of the simple heroisms of our American annals. We bid fair to have in him an admirable ballad-writer, choosing instinctively and from affection “that which lieth nearest,” and saying it with truth and zest. His Muse, like himself, is happy in her place and time; none too much at the mercy of sentiment; coming through sheer intelligence, to the conclusion of fools, and going her unvexed gypsy ways with an “All's well!” ever on her lips.
L. I. G.
THE WAY OF THE WORLD.
AMES JEFFREY ROCHE was born May 31,
1847, in Queen's County, Ireland, a auspicious soil for a poet. Through his father, Edward Roche, Esq., an able mathematician and scholar, still living and occupying the office of Provincial Librarian in Prince Edward Island, he inherits the literary quality dominant in his temperament and his art. The family settled in Prince Edward Island in the same year. The boy was educated by his father, and later in St. Dunstan's College. Here, at the age of fifteen, foreshadowing his career, he turned journalist and proudly edited the college weekly“ unto the urn and ashes” of its infant end. His youth had a fair share of spirited adventure, an encountering of odd characters and scenes, a sharp observance of events, and a close, rapid, honest mental life. In 1866 he strolled alone into the open gates of Boston, fell into the clutches of commerce, and prospered there, yet with revertings thenceforward to literature, his early love and first unconscious choice, keeping up, in print, a running fire of the arch, absurd, unique humor which has since given his name its note. Already married, in 1883, he shifted into his natural posture and became assistant editor of the Boston Pilot, a position entirely to his mind, which he still fills. A man of activity, eminently social, interested in all public matters, sensitive and independent, he has done, without any premeditation, much energetic and brilliant work, of which a “History of the Filibusters in Spanish America," a novel, and a drama are yet in manuscript. In 1886 he published “Songs and Satires," a distinct success, and an earnest of healthful and unhurried growth.
Nothing injures Mr. Roche's fun so much as his seriousness. When a throat is able to give out a ringing bass song of sport or war, we cease to demand falsetto of it, however quaint and dexterous. It is, perhaps, an unhappy gift, this of divided skill, for it sometimes necessitates a pause, an adjustment, a choice. It is a grim truth that the humorous has no place on the top peaks of Parnassus: to be great, one must be grave. But Mr. Roche, of all men, can afford to let his lighter talent, exquisite as it is in kind, go by, so long as he can throw into his metrical narratives the same keenness and decisiveness of thought, the same life and grace of phrase, which have glorified his cap-and-bells. Something in the generous and sym; athetic air of to-day has colored his verses, ever and anon, with a light, humanitarian and revolutionary; but his protests, made as they are of beautiful philosophy, come from him with an odd grace only, and belie Timon's part with a look of Mercutio. A poet, as a poet merely, had best sing out his unregenerated music
The hands of the King are soft and fair;
They never knew labor's stain. The hands of the Robber redly wear
The bloody brand of Cain. But the hands of the Man are hard and scarred
With the scars of toil and pain.
The slaves of Pilate have washed his hands
As white as a king's may be. Barabbas with wrists unfettered stands,
For the world has made him free. But thy palms toil-worn by nails are torn,
O Christ, on Calvary!
Its root had humble birth,
With nought of grace or worth.
The gelid fish that floated near
Saw only the vulgar stem. The clumsy turtle paddling by, The water snake with his lidless eye, -
It was only a weed to them.
But the butterfly and the honey-bee,
The sun and sky and air, They marked its heart of virgin gold In the satin leaves of spotless fold,
And its odor rich and rare.