Page images
[graphic][merged small]



Lofty ones should strengthen lowly,

With their elements of cheer! Golden rod, I saw you bending,

Softly bending, Toward the asters standing near, As with tender glance perusing

What their faces said so dear. Smile your brightest! Love, when choosing, Makes its own rich atmosphere,

Sweet and self-diffusing.


WITH SMILES RETURNS. Yon funeral train which bore its dead apart,

Returns with less of sorrow in its tread; And thus, alas ! some torn and bleeding heart,

Fearful the world may read how joy hath fled, Turns back in smiles from burying its dead !

Content weighs heavier than gold

In every perfect life ;
And there are blessings manifold,

Outlasting pain and strife.
Apparent losses may prove gains,

And victory crown defeat,
As after April's lingering rains,
The May-flowers blossom sweet.

- Scarlet Leaves.

Gold hath its dross, blue skies a cloud,
Fortune a fall, and hope a shroud ;

But Love upon its mountain height,
Reflects a ray of Heaven's own light.

- Love on Mountain Height.

OBERT KIDSON is a wage-earner in one of

our big metropolitan stores, and as such he desires to be known. In London, Chicago, New York and Brooklyn he has held good positions in the largest store in each place, in his line of busi

He is a retail carpet salesman. If the voice of the singer in him ever gains the public ear he wishes it to be recognized as “a voice from the crowd," as his sympathies are mainly with the millions amongst whom his lot is cast. He is a lover of streets, and crowds, and vast cities. Nature he worships; human nature he takes to his heart. He has worked like a Hercules for the good of his kind, and was.chiefly instrumental in bringing about the agitation which resulted in the passage of the Saturday Half-Holiday law for the State of New York.

The subject of this sketch is an Englishman, but coming to this country sixteen years ago at twentythree years of age, he soon became enthusiastically American, and a firm believer in a republican form of government. From time to time he has written verses for different magazines and newspapers. Although he has never very persistently pushed his way to the front, yet the fact that he has always been ready at short notice to respond to any demand upon his resources warrants his friend in the belief that he has a reserve store of good things in manuscript which they would like to see in the form of volume. The first of his poems to be copied far and wide were a series of "Trade Rhymes” which appeared some years ago in the pages of The Carpet Trade Review, the organ of the carpet trade of the United States published in New York. Many naturally thought this was his only vein, but were soon surprised to read lyrics from his versatile pen as far removed from the marts of commerce as the sunny isles of the Pacific are distant from London docks.

He says that the reason he has never forsaken a mercantile career for that of literature is because he desires his muse to be free as air, untrammelled and independent. He also says that he likes his business because it compels him to take sufficient physical exercise to insure good health, necessitates steady habits, and returns an income which satisfies his simple tastes, with sufficient left over to provide moderately for old age. He positively scorns riches, not only for the pride engendered thereby, but because of the wasted lives spent in procuring them. He enjoyed a few short years of happy married life, and being left single I have every reason to believe he will remain so, for the idol of his heart is Song, and she is a jealous mistress. Mr. Kidson has in preparation a volume of poems to be entitled, “A Voice from the Crowd Poems of Nature and Human Nature." A, F.

NIGHT. Through roseate clouds the sun sinks slowly down, A fallen monarch eve may dare discrown, Until, entombed amid the far blue hills, Night with her shadows all the silence fills.

- In Silent State.

For who hath wisdom, hath a high estate,
And holds the key unlocking Heaven's gate.
What matters it, though man distinguish not
The great insignia? When hath God forgot ?

--A Key to the Gate.


For he alone is truly great

Whose virtue goes before his fame, Whose soul stands ever robed in state, To make illustrious his name.

-Elements of Power.

[blocks in formation]

The famine in my heart inspires
My weary eyes with restless fires;
Mine eyes the wide world sadly roam
For that I once beheld at home.

FEAR AND LOVE. Some in the temple seek the Lord,

To fear their spirit yields, And some will walk with Christ, and pluck Ripe corn in sunny fields.

-A Comrade of Nature.

O Time! what happy heirs are thine !

Whose child is this I call my bride ?
Along the old ancestral line

What myriad shadowy lovers glide;
Procession formed to march to rhyme

And lovers all, and old maids none,
We are the latest heirs of Time,
We'll keep the pageant moving on.

- New Year's Chimes.

CITY. Once Nature only soothed my woes, And stilled the heart's tumultuous throes ; The little bird on hawthorn tree Sang out Life's plaintive elegy; And mountain torrents curbed my will, And Nature whispered “ Peace, be still."


But now I seek my city home,
A thousand instincts bid me come,
For I have learned to love the sight,
Of crowded streets by day and night,
Since human nature fills the heart
Which once with Nature dwelt apart.

-Home From the Mountains.

Sea's roll on sands of golden grain,

Oh sailors sing in bolder tones,

And cruise in warm or chilly zones, And sport upon the heaving main, And let your sails reflect the light

Of sunsets I have never seen,

And on the gunwale laughing lean, And smoke down care into the night. Beauties of village and of town,

Mine eyes will never worship ye,

Nor sing your praises lovingly,
Alas! my sun is going down.
Ye sylvan lanes, the linnets home,

And woods where God His garden keeps,

And where the hazel chastely weeps, Adieu ! to you I cannot come.

- A Life.

He has taken the vow of poverty,

'Tis an ancient vow, yet new
And strange to come from such as he,

I can scarcely believe it true ; He was anxious, ambitious, and strained

each nerve To gain a place and name, But now he says that less will serve,

And he cares no more for fame.

He says he no longer seeks for wealth,

But that riches come to him,
All heaven is his, and his soul has health,

And he dwells with the seraphim;
The hills are his, and the flocks and herds,

The earth and the universe, The rhyme of streams, and the song of birds,

And the poet's sweetest verse.

He says that his life of care and moil

Is over, and past, and gone,
And that now his soul delights in toil,

For devotion leads him on ;
He has left the selfish crowd behind,

And his life is now serene ;
Shakespeare was once his master-mind,

But now 'tis the Nazarene.

LOVE'S FAMINE. All the children come to me, Look up at me, and run to me; Little babies peek at me, First furtive, and then knowingly, And soon their wondering eyes will smile, And for a moment they beguile My care-worn soul to fairy land.

Oh! how they come! they know my loss;
They draw the nails from out my cross.
Suffer them, Lord, to come, to come.

Once, children never noticed me,
For then I had a child at home;
But now they know the look in me,
And they are sitting on my knee,
Their little arms around my neck,
One, two or three, I little reck ;
I want them all, where once but one
Was all I loved, but she is gone.

What gaze is mine their souls to move ?
It is the hungry look of love.

« PreviousContinue »