Page images
[blocks in formation]

WILLIAM H. BUSHNELL. TH 'HIS veteran author was born in the city of

Hudson, Columbia County, New York, on June 4, 1823, of good old stock, New England and Knickerbocker; was educated at the University of the City of New York; followed for a time the profession of his father, the law, and after much journalistic experience as editor and contributor, finally settled in Washington where he now resides.

In person Mr. Bushnell is of medium height, blue-eyed, of scholarly sedateness, and unaffected affability. In the suavity of the man and his freedom from ostentation, and in his perfect repose you have the evidence of that high result of man. hood, a gentleman.

It is proper to add that the poet has for a wife one of the most brilliant conversationalists in the Capital, and whose nom de plume, Helen Luqueer,” is well known to the literary world. Their charming home and united literary life is a reminder of the Howitts and the Brownings. J. W. O.


Our very hopes are nourished on decay.

- Ibid. NIGHT. Red grows the sky with wealth of light suffusedDeep-orange red, and threatening, though still; O'er-hanging clouds look solid as the hills, And the low line of hills resembles clouds; Night speedily her heavy mantle draws O'er sea and land!

-Ibid. REST.


Life conscious is, and there's no rest at all.
No rest at all — or only perfect rest —
That grand repose where rest and work are one!
The rest, that is, when o'er earth's canopy
The northern lights keep at their ceaseless play;
The rest that is, when hid from human eye
The acorn prophesies the coming spring;
The rest that is, when wearied hands lie still
While thought communeth with the One Supreme!
All, all is still. The day is hid in night;
But soon the night will hide within the day;
And noiseless glides the chariot of morn.
All, all is still. This hour be consecrate.
My spirit, onward! self-controlled — self-poised!
Till this unceasing, everlasting change,
Become to thee - as to the Eternal — rest!


WHERE the rustic porch was hidden by roses, red

and white, And honeysuckle laden with wealth of blossoms

bright, And the brier gave its sweetness at the dewy even

ing hour, And the violet its perfume to the kissing of the

shower; Where bird and insect singing from the cherry

laden tree, Were answered from the clover fields by humming

of the bee: Where dozing in the shadow the faithful watch-dog

laid, And flashing through the scented grass the tiny

kittens played; And where life's chain unbroken by loved ones

forced to roam, Shone bright, undim'd by sorrows in the heart's

remembered home.


O Reason, Wonder, Doubt

Great warriors three!

A trinity
No true soul lives without.

-- Hymn.
Enchantress, Disenchantress, both — in one!

us to-day with dazzling light, To-morrow hiding every ray of sun. Till we are sunk in the abyss of night.

The oracles are dumb: what'er Life be, Man walks by faith alone; he cannot see.

- Sonnet.

[blocks in formation]
[blocks in formation]

On a green, mossy bank, near a swift speeding

When May was but roses and song,
A laughing babe played with a frail, tiny seed,

As the hours sped golden along:
She tossed it aloft in the glittering air,

Then caught as it fell from on high,
Till tired of play threw it careless away,

And the brooklet sped merrily by.

The seasons rolled on. A fair girl in her pride

Of beauty and tresses of gold, Stooped to pick a bouquet of the dew-laden buds

That grew where the tiny seed rolled; She drank in their perfume, with lips whose deep

red Shamed even the rose buds, and high Her silver voice rang in its innocent mirth —

While the brook still sped merrily by.

There is less of gold glint in her tresses,

A few threads of silver wove through,
The crimson of lips not so vivid,

And lighter the eyes in their blue;
Her movements more stately and grander,

Though losing no whit of their grace,
And the smiles are more patient and tender
That shine on the matronly face

Of the woman I love.
Faded out all the brown and the sunshine,

Burnished silver the curls of hair shine,
In her eyes less of earth, more of heaven-

Less stained are the cheeks with life's wina ALICE W. BROTHERTON.

The skin not so lily in whiteness,

Paler now the rose waves o'er them roll; But the voice still retains all its sweetness, And the face is illumed by the soul

Of the woman I love.


Earth, keep her to bless and to brighten,

Death, send not thy stern fiat down; And Heaven, linger long in the weaving

Strands of gold and of pearl for her crown. There are angels enough clothed in glory

Few given life's griefs to assuage; And the tenderness, purity, beauty, Are perfected and hallowed by age

In the woman I love.

The dying daughter of Time is Love-
Honor the living son of Eternity.

The soul of the beautiful woman
Is only girl's purified snow.

Love is stronger than death, than the grave's deep

tide, As the pride of earth, 'tis of heaven the pride.

- Love After Death.

I don't 'spose yer givin' ter doin' things bad,

But ef yer ever larned that way,
Didn't thar rise up out of yer heart

Somethin' yer'd heard yer mother say?
And didn't yer think of her always,

And didn't yer hold yer breath
When a woman war sinnin' and sufferin',
And goin' down ther black gulch of Death?

-Hangtown Jim.
Before the act the action, the thought before the

deed, The bud before the flower, the flower before the

seed, In all of mind or matter another must precede. Before the song of poet the inspirations come, Before the honey sweetness the wild bees busy hum, Before the panting tempest the silence vast and dumb.

-Ab Initio.
Ours to frame the slender railway,

Belting earth, till space is naught,
O'er which rolls the lightning engine,
With the laden train of thought.

- Songs of the Toilsmen.


letter to a friend says: “What can you say of a life so sequestered as mine except, 'She is born, is married, will die,' like the needy knife-grinder; Story, God bless you I have none to tell.' I was born in Cambridge, Indiana, but have passed most of my life in Cincinnati, and have never been east of the Blue Ridge Mountains. So you see I am purely one of the aborigines. As to my 'versing' that began soon after I was out of school. I think it was in 1872 I first sent my poems out to seek their fortune."

Mrs. Brotherton lives quietly on East Walnut Hills, Cincinnati. In her home life she is the personification of devotion and domestic happiness. Graduating from one of the Cincinnati High Schools at an early age, it was not long before her bright soul attracted its affinity, hence the love, cottage and three interesting children which now divide with her writing all the mother-poet's time. Those poems in which the heart and its phases of joy and woe are treated are by far her best productions. Living in her own home with little of the outside world to distract her, the poet has grown wise feeding upon her own soul-thoughts. Hers is a busy life in that little home in East Walnut Hills; a life full of home and its motherly and wifely duties performed so faithfully. Crowded in among these, her songs have sprung up from her rich experience-experience not with the world but with the double nature of all poetical lives. The friction of one with the other she has used; no force has been wasted. Never has the home I fe been neglected, or made secondary to the writer's life.

She has been for many years a contributor to the Century, The Independent, Atlantic Monthly, and Scrbner's Magazine. Her first separate publication was

· Beyond the Veil," issued in 1886. In June, 1887, her collected poems entitled “The Sailing of King Olaf and Other Poems" appeared. Mrs. Brotherton's style is clear, concise and remarkable rather for strength than any marked degree of musical quality.

Mrs. Brotherton is rather slight in figure, with light brown hair worn in waves over a full high forehead. The constant use of eyeglasses has marred the beauty of her large and expressive eyes.

E. A.


What is your art, O poet?
Only to catch and to hold
In a poor, frail word-mould

A little of life;

[merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small]
[blocks in formation]

PLIGHTED. A. D., 1874.
"Two souls with but a single thought,
Two hearts that beat as one."

NELLIE loquitur.
BLESS my heart! You're come at last.

Awful glad to see you, dear!
Thought you'd died or something, Belle-

Such an age since you've been here! My engagement? Gracious! Yes.

Rumor's hit the mark this time. And the victim? Charley Gray,

Know him, don't you? Well, he's prime. Such mustachios! Splendid style!

Then he's not so horrid fast-
Waltzes like a seraph, too,

Has some fortune-best and last.
Love him? Nonsense. Don't be “soft."

Pretty much as love now goes;
He's devoted, and in time

I'll get used to him, I s'pose.
First love? Humbug. Don't talk stuff.

Bella Brown, don't be a fool!
Next you'll rave of flames and darts

Like a chit at boarding school. Don't be miffed," I talked just so

Some two years back. Fact, my dear! But two seasons kill romance,

Leave one's views of life quite clear. Why if Will Latrobe had asked

When he left, two years ago, I'd have thrown up all and gone

Out to Kansas, do you know? Fancy me a settler's wife!

Blest escape, dear, was it not?
Yes, it's hardly in my line

To enact “Love in a Cot."
Well, you see, I'd had my swing,

Been engaged to eight or ten:
Got to stop some time of course,

So it don't much matter when. Auntie hates old maids, and thinks

Every girl should marry youngOn that theme my whole life long

I have heard the changes rung! So, ma belle, what could I do?

Charley wants a stylish wife,
We'll suit well enough, no fear,

When we settle down for life.
But for love-stuff! See my ring ?

Lovely, isn't it? Solitaire,
Nearly made Maud Hinton turn

Green with envy and despair, Hers aint half so nice, you see-

Did I write you, Belle, about

Such was the sailing of Olaf the king,

Monarch and Saint of Norroway;
In view of whose wondrous prospering
The Norse have a saying unto this day:

“ As Harald Ilaardrade found to his cost,
Time spent in praying is never lost!


A SONG welled up in the singer's heart,

(Like song in the throat of a bird,) And loud he sang, and far it rang,

For his heart was strangely stirred; And he sang for the very joy of song,

With no thought of one who heard.

Within the listener's wayward soul

A heavenly patience grew.
He fared on his way with a benison

On the singer, who never knew How the careless song of an idle hour

Had shaped a life anew.

« PreviousContinue »