Project Gutenberg's Poetry: A Magazine of Verse, Volume I, by Various

This eBook is for the use of anyone anywhere at no cost and with
almost no restrictions whatsoever.  You may copy it, give it away or
re-use it under the terms of the Project Gutenberg License included
with this eBook or online at

Title: Poetry: A Magazine of Verse, Volume I
       October-March, 1912-13

Author: Various

Editor: Harriet Monroe

Release Date: July 15, 2013 [EBook #43224]

Language: English

Character set encoding: ISO-8859-1


Produced by David Starner, Paul Marshall and the Online
Distributed Proofreading Team at (This
book was produced from images made available by the
HathiTrust Digital Library.)

The cover image was created by the transcriber and is placed in the public domain.

POETRY--A Magazine of Verse


October~March, 1912-13

Harriet Monroe ~ Editor

Scroll and Quill

Reprinted with the permission
of the original publisher.

New York, New York

By Harriet Monroe

POETRY--A Magazine of Verse Vol. I
No. 1
OCTOBER, 1912  

[Pg 1]

It is a little isle amid bleak seas— An isolate realm of garden, circled round By importunity of stress and sound, Devoid of empery to master these. At most, the memory of its streams and bees, Borne to the toiling mariner outward-bound, Recalls his soul to that delightful ground; But serves no beacon toward his destinies.
It is a refuge from the stormy days, Breathing the peace of a remoter world Where beauty, like the musing dusk of even, Enfolds the spirit in its silver haze; While far away, with glittering banners furled, The west lights fade, and stars come out in heaven.
[Pg 2] II
It is a sea-gate, trembling with the blast Of powers that from the infinite sea-plain roll, A whelming tide. Upon the waiting soul As on a fronting rock, thunders the vast Groundswell; its spray bursts heavenward, and drives past In fume and sound articulate of the whole Of ocean's heart, else voiceless; on the shoal Silent; upon the headland clear at last.
From darkened sea-coasts without stars or sun, Like trumpet-voices in a holy war, Utter the heralds tidings of the deep. And where men slumber, weary and undone, Visions shall come, incredible hopes from far,— And with high passion shatter the bonds of sleep.
Arthur Davison Ficke

[Pg 3]

I am the Woman, ark of the law and its breaker, Who chastened her steps and taught her knees to be meek, Bridled and bitted her heart and humbled her cheek, Parcelled her will, and cried "Take more!" to the taker, Shunned what they told her to shun, sought what they bade her seek, Locked up her mouth from scornful speaking: now it is open to speak.
I am she that is terribly fashioned, the creature Wrought in God's perilous mood, in His unsafe hour. The morning star was mute, beholding my feature, Seeing the rapture I was, the shame, and the power, Scared at my manifold meaning; he heard me call "O fairest among ten thousand, acceptable brother!" And he answered not, for doubt; till he saw me crawl And whisper down to the secret worm, "O mother, Be not wroth in the ancient house; thy daughter forgets not at all!" I am the Woman, fleër away, Soft withdrawer back from the maddened mate, Lurer inward and down to the gates of day And crier there in the gate, "What shall I give for thee, wild one, say! The long, slow rapture and patient anguish of life, Or art thou minded a swifter way? [Pg 4] Ask if thou canst, the gold, but oh if thou must, Good is the shining dross, lovely the dust! Look at me, I am the Woman, harlot and heavenly wife; Tell me thy price, be unashamed; I will assuredly pay!"
I am also the Mother: of two that I bore I comfort and feed the slayer, feed and comfort the slain. Did they number my daughters and sons? I am mother of more! Many a head they marked not, here in my bosom has lain, Babbling with unborn lips in a tongue to be, Far, incredible matters, all familiar to me. Still would the man come whispering, "Wife!" but many a time my breast Took him not as a husband: I soothed him and laid him to rest Even as the babe of my body, and knew him for such. My mouth is open to speak, that was dumb too much! I say to you I am the Mother; and under the sword Which flamed each way to harry us forth from the Lord, I saw Him young at the portal, weeping and staying the rod, And I, even I was His mother, and I yearned as the mother of God.
[Pg 5] I am also the Spirit. The Sisters laughed When I sat with them dumb in the portals, over my lamp, Half asleep in the doors: for my gown was raught Off at the shoulder to shield from the wind and the rain The wick I tended against the mysterious hour When the Silent City of Being should ring with song, As the Lord came in with Life to the marriage bower. "Look!" laughed the elder Sisters; and crimson with shame I hid my breast away from the rosy flame. "Ah!" cried the leaning Sisters, pointing, doing me wrong, "Do you see?" laughed the wanton Sisters, "She will get her lover ere long!" And it was but a little while till unto my need He was given indeed, And we walked where waxing world after world went by; And I said to my lover, "Let us begone, "Oh, let us begone, and try "Which of them all the fairest to dwell in is, "Which is the place for us, our desirable clime!" But he said, "They are only the huts and the little villages, Pleasant to go and lodge in rudely over the vintage-time!" Scornfully spake he, being unwise, Being flushed at heart because of our walking together. But I was mute with passionate prophecies; My heart went veiled and faint in the golden weather, While universe drifted by after still universe. Then I cried, "Alas, we must hasten and lodge therein, [Pg 6] One after one, and in every star that they shed! A dark and a weary thing is come on our head— To search obedience out in the bosom of sin, To listen deep for love when thunders the curse; For O my love, behold where the Lord hath planted In every star in the midst His dangerous Tree! Still I must pluck thereof and bring unto thee, Saying, "The coolness for which all night we have panted; Taste of the goodly thing, I have tasted first!" Bringing us noway coolness, but burning thirst, Giving us noway peace, but implacable strife, Loosing upon us the wounding joy and the wasting sorrow of life!
I am the Woman, ark of the Law and sacred arm to upbear it, Heathen trumpet to overthrow and idolatrous sword to shear it: Yea, she whose arm was round the neck of the morning star at song, Is she who kneeleth now in the dust and cries at the secret door, "Open to me, O sleeping mother! The gate is heavy and strong. "Open to me, I am come at last; be wroth with thy child no more. "Let me lie down with thee there in the dark, and be slothful with thee as before!"
William Vaughan Moody

[Pg 7]

TO WHISTLER, AMERICAN   On the loan exhibit of his paintings at the Tate Gallery.
You also, our first great, Had tried all ways; Tested and pried and worked in many fashions, And this much gives me heart to play the game.
Here is a part that's slight, and part gone wrong, And much of little moment, and some few Perfect as Dürer!
"In the Studio" and these two portraits, [A] if I had my choice! And then these sketches in the mood of Greece?
You had your searches, your uncertainties, And this is good to know—for us, I mean, Who bear the brunt of our America And try to wrench her impulse into art.
You were not always sure, not always set To hiding night or tuning "symphonies"; Had not one style from birth, but tried and pried And stretched and tampered with the media.
You and Abe Lincoln from that mass of dolts Show us there's chance at least of winning through.
Ezra Pound

[Pg 8]

"'Tis but a vague, invarious delight As gold that rains about some buried king.
As the fine flakes, When tourists frolicking Stamp on his roof or in the glazing light Try photographs, wolf down their ale and cakes And start to inspect some further pyramid;
As the fine dust, in the hid cell beneath Their transitory step and merriment, Drifts through the air, and the sarcophagus Gains yet another crust Of useless riches for the occupant, So I, the fires that lit once dreams Now over and spent, Lie dead within four walls And so now love Rains down and so enriches some stiff case, And strews a mind with precious metaphors,
And so the space Of my still consciousness Is full of gilded snow,
The which, no cat has eyes enough To see the brightness of."
Ezra Pound

[Pg 9]

Fish of the flood, on the bankèd billow Thou layest thy head in dreams; Sliding as slides thy shifting pillow, One with the streams Of the sea is thy spirit.
Gean-tree, thou spreadest thy foaming flourish Abroad in the sky so grey; It not heeding if it thee nourish, Thou dost obey, Happy, its moving.
So, God, thy love it not needeth me, Only thy life, that I blessèd be.
Emilia Stuart Lorimer

[Pg 10]

I have seen the proudest stars That wander on through space, Even the sun and moon, But not your face.
I have heard the violin, The winds and waves rejoice In endless minstrelsy, Yet not your voice.
I have touched the trillium, Pale flower of the land, Coral, anemone, And not your hand.
I have kissed the shining feet Of Twilight lover-wise, Opened the gates of Dawn— Oh not your eyes!
I have dreamed unwonted things, Visions that witches brew, Spoken with images, Never with you.
Helen Dudley

[Pg 11]

1. The Garden Poco sostenuto in A major
    The laving tide of inarticulate air.
  Vivace in A major
    The iris people dance.

2. The Pool

Allegretto in A minor
    Cool-hearted dim familiar of the doves.

3. The Birds

Presto in F major
    I keep a frequent tryst.
  Presto meno assai
    The blossom-powdered orange-tree.

4. To The Moon

Allegro con brio in A major
    Moon that shone on Babylon.
What junipers are these, inlaid With flame of the pomegranate tree? The god of gardens must have made This still unrumored place for thee To rest from immortality, And dream within the splendid shade Some more elusive symphony Than orchestra has ever played.

[Pg 12]

I In A major Poco sostenuto
The laving tide of inarticulate air Breaks here in flowers as the sea in foam, But with no satin lisp of failing wave: The odor-laden winds are very still. An unimagined music here exhales In upcurled petal, dreamy bud half-furled, And variations of thin vivid leaf: Symphonic beauty that some god forgot. If form could waken into lyric sound, This flock of irises like poising birds Would feel song at their slender feathered throats, And pour into a grey-winged aria Their wrinkled silver fingermarked with pearl; That flight of ivory roses high along The airy azure of the larkspur spires Would be a fugue to puzzle nightingales With too-evasive rapture, phrase on phrase. Where the hibiscus flares would cymbals clash, And the black cypress like a deep bassoon Would hum a clouded amber melody.
[Pg 13] But all across the trudging ragged chords That are the tangled grasses in the heat, The mariposa lilies fluttering Like trills upon some archangelic flute, The roses and carnations and divine Small violets that voice the vanished god, There is a lure of passion-poignant tone Not flower-of-pomegranate—that finds the heart As stubborn oboes do—can breathe in air, Nor poppies, nor keen lime, nor orange-bloom.
What zone of wonder in the ardent dusk Of trees that yearn and cannot understand, Vibrates as to the golden shepherd horn That stirs some great adagio with its cry And will not let it rest? O tender trees, Your orchid, like a shepherdess of dreams, Calls home her whitest dream from following Elusive laughter of the unmindful god!
The iris people dance Like any nimble faun: To rhythmic radiance They foot it in the dawn. They dance and have no need Of crystal-dripping flute Or chuckling river-reed,— Their music hovers mute. The dawn-lights flutter by [Pg 14] All noiseless, but they know! Such children of the sky Can hear the darkness go. But does the morning play Whatever they demand— Or amber-barred bourrée Or silver saraband?
THE POOL II  In A minor Allegretto
Cool-hearted dim familiar of the doves, Thou coiled sweet water where they come to tell Their mellow legends and rehearse their loves, As what in April or in June befell And thou must hear of,—friend of Dryades Who lean to see where flower should be set To star the dusk of wreathed ivy braids, They have not left thy trees, Nor do tired fauns thy crystal kiss forget, Nor forest-nymphs astray from distant glades.
[Pg 15] Thou feelest with delight their showery feet Along thy mossy margin myrtle-starred, And thine the heart of wildness quick to beat At imprint of shy hoof upon thy sward: Yet who could know thee wild who art so cool, So heavenly-minded, templed in thy grove Of plumy cedar, larch and juniper? O strange ecstatic Pool, What unknown country art thou dreaming of, Or temple than this garden lovelier?
Who made thy sky the silver side of leaves, And poised its orchid like a swan-white moon Whose disc of perfect pallor half deceives The mirror of thy limpid green lagoon, He loveth well thy ripple-feathered moods, Thy whims at dusk, thy rainbow look at dawn! Dream thou no more of vales Olympian: Where pale Olympus broods There were no orchid white as moon or swan, No sky of leaves, no garden-haunting Pan!
THE BIRDS III  In F major Presto
I keep a frequent tryst With whirr and shower of wings: Some inward melodist Interpreting all things [Pg 16] Appoints the place, the hours. Dazzle and sense of flowers, Though not the least leaf stir, May mean a tanager: How rich the silence is until he sings!
The smoke-tree's cloudy white Has fire within its breast. What winged mere delight There hides as in a nest And fashions of its flame Music without a name? So might an opal sing If given thrilling wing, And voice for lyric wildness unexpressed.
In grassy dimness thatched With tangled growing things, A troubadour rose-patched, With velvet-shadowed wings, Seeks a sustaining fly. Who else unseen goes by Quick-pattering through the hush? Some twilight-footed thrush Or finch intent on small adventurings?
[Pg 17] I have no time for gloom, For gloom what time have I? The orange is in bloom; Emerald parrots fly Out of the cypress-dusk; Morning is strange with musk. The wild canary now Jewels the lemon-bough, And mocking-birds laugh in the rose's room.
THE ORANGE TREE In D Major Presto meno assai
The blossom-powdered orange tree, For all her royal speechlessness, Out of a heart of ecstasy Is singing, singing, none the less!
Light as a springing fountain, she Is spray above the wind-sleek turf: Dream-daughter of the moon's white sea And sister to its showered surf!
TO THE MOON IV In A major Allegro con brio
Moon that shone on Babylon, Searching out the gardens there, Could you find a fairer one Than this garden, anywhere? Did Damascus at her best Hide such beauty in her breast?
[Pg 18] When you flood with creamy light Vines that net the sombre pine, Turn the shadowed iris white, Summon cactus stars to shine, Do you free in silvered air Wistful spirits everywhere?
Here they linger, there they pass, And forget their native heaven: Flit along the dewy grass Rare Vittoria, Sappho, even! And the hushed magnolia burns Incense in her gleaming urns.
When the nightingale demands Word with Keats who answers him, Shakespeare listens—understands— Mindful of the cherubim; And the South Wind dreads to know Mozart gone as seraphs go.
Moon of poets dead and gone, Moon to gods of music dear, Gardens they have looked upon Let them re-discover here: Rest—and dream a little space Of some heart-remembered place!
Grace Hazard Conkling

[Pg 19]




Once upon a time, when man was new in the woods of the world, when his feet were scarred with jungle thorns and his hands were red with the blood of beasts, a great king rose who gathered his neighbors together, and subdued the wandering tribes. Strange cunning was his, for he ground the stones to an edge together, and bound them with thongs to sticks; and he taught his people to pry apart the forest, and beat back the ravenous beasts. And he bade them honeycomb the mountainside with caves, to dwell therein with their women. And the most beautiful women the king took for his own, that his wisdom might not perish from the earth. And he led the young men to war and conquered all the warring tribes from the mountains to the sea. And when fire smote a great tree out of heaven, and raged through the forest till the third sun, he seized a burning brand and lit an altar to his god. And there, beside the ever-burning fire, he sat and made laws and did justice. And his people loved and feared him.

And the king grew old. And for seven journeys of the sun from morn to morn he moved not, neither uttered word. And the hearts of the people were troubled, but none dared speak to the king's despair; neither wise men nor warriors dared cry out unto him.

[Pg 20]

Now the youngest son of the king was a lad still soft of flesh, who had never run to battle not sat in council nor stood before the king. And his heart yearned for his father, and he bowed before his mother and said, "Give me thy blessing, for I have words within me for the king; yea, as the sea sings to the night with waves will my words roll in singing unto his grief." And his mother said, "Go, my son; for thou hast words of power and soothing, and the king shall be healed."

So the youth went forth and bowed him toward the king's seat. And the wise men and warriors laid hands upon him, and said, "Who art thou, that thou shouldst go in ahead of us to him who sitteth in darkness?" And the king's son rose, and stretched forth his arms, and said, "Unhand me and let me go, ye silent ones, who for seven sun-journeys have watched in darkness and uttered no word of light! Unhand me, for as a fig-tree with fruit, so my heart is rich with words for the king."

Then he put forth his strength and strode on singing softly, and bowed him before the king. And he spake the king's great deeds in cunning words—his wars and city-carvings and wise laws, his dominion over men and beasts and the thick woods of the earth; his greeting of the gods with fire.

[Pg 21]

And lo, the king lifted up his head and stretched forth his arms and wept. "Yea, all these things have I done," he said, "and they shall perish with me. My death is upon me, and I shall die, and the tribes I have welded together shall be broken apart, and the beasts shall win back their domain, and the green jungle shall overgrow my mansions. Lo, the fire shall go out on the altar of the gods, and my glory shall be as a crimson cloud that the night swallows up in darkness."

Then the young man lifted up his voice and cried: "Oh, king, be comforted! Thy deeds shall not pass as a cloud, neither shall thy laws be strewn before the wind. For I will carve thy glory in rich and rounded words—yea, I will string thy deeds together in jewelled beads of perfect words that thy sons shall wear on their hearts forever."

"Verily thy words are rich with song," said the king; "but thou shalt die, and who will utter them? Like twinkling foam is the speech of man's mouth; like foam from a curling wave that vanishes in the sun."

"Nay, let thy heart believe me, oh king my father," said the youth. "For the words of my mouth shall keep step with the ripple of waves and the beating of wings; yea, they shall mount with the huge paces of the sun in heaven, that cease not for my ceasing. Men shall sound them on suckling tongues still soft with milk, they shall run into battle to the tune of thy deeds, and kindle their fire with the breath of thy wisdom. And thy glory shall be ever living, as a jewel of jasper from the earth—yea, as the green jewel of jasper carven into a god for the rod of thy power, oh king, and of the power of thy sons forever."

[Pg 22]

The king sat silent till the going-down of the sun. Then lifted he his head, and stroked his beard, and spake: "Verily the sun goes down, and my beard shines whiter than his, and I shall die. Now therefore stand at my right hand, O son of my wise years, child of my dreams. Stand at my right hand, and fit thy speech to music, that men may hold in their hearts thy rounded words. Forever shalt thou keep thy place, and utter thy true tale in the ears of the race. And woe be unto them that hear thee not! Verily that generation shall pass as a cloud, and its glory shall be as a tree that withers. For thou alone shalt win the flying hours to thee, and keep the beauty of them for the joy of men forever."

H. M.


In the brilliant pages of his essay on Jean François Millet, Romain Rolland says that Millet, as a boy, used to read the Bucolics and the Georgics "with enchantment" and was "seized by emotion—when he came to the line, 'It is the hour when the great shadows seek the plain.'

Et jam summa procul villarum culmina fumant Majoresque cadunt altis de montibus umbrae?"

[Pg 23]

To the lover and student of poetry, this incident has an especial charm and significance. There is something fine in the quick sympathy of an artist in one kind, for beauty expressed by the master of another medium. The glimpse M. Rolland gives us of one of the most passionate art-students the world has ever known, implies with fresh grace a truth Anglo-Saxons are always forgetting—that poetry is one of the great humanities, that poetry is one of the great arts of expression.

Many of our customs conspire to cause, almost to force, this forgetting. Thousands of us have been educated to a dark and often permanent ignorance of classic poetry, by being taught in childhood to regard it as written for the purpose of illustrating Hadley's Latin, or Goodwin's Greek grammar, and composed to follow the rules of versification at the end of the book. It seems indeed one of fate's strangest ironies that the efforts of these distinguished grammarians to unveil immortal masterpieces are commonly used in schools and colleges to enshroud, not to say swaddle up, the images of the gods "forever young," and turn them into mummies. In our own country, far from perceiving in Vergil's quiet music the magnificent gesture of nature that thrilled his Norman reader—far from conceiving of epic poetry as the simplest universal tongue, one early acquires a wary distrust of it as something one must constantly labor over.

[Pg 24]

Aside from gaining in childhood this strong, practical objection to famous poetry, people achieve the deadly habit of reading metrical lines unimaginatively. After forming—generally in preparation for entering one of our great universities—the habit of blinding the inner eye, deafening the inner ear, and dropping into a species of mental coma before a page of short lines, it is difficult for educated persons to read poetry with what is known as "ordinary human intelligence."

It does not occur to them simply to listen to the nightingale. But poetry, I believe, never speaks her beauty—certainly never her scope and variety, except on the condition that in her presence one sits down quietly with folded hands, and truly listens to her singing voice.

"So for one the wet sail arching through the rainbow round the bow, And for one the creak of snow-shoes on the crust."

Many people do not like poetry, in this way, as a living art to be enjoyed, but rather as an exact science to be approved. To them poetry may concern herself only with a limited number of subjects to be presented in a predetermined and conventional manner and form. To such readers the word "form" means usually only a repeated literary effect: and they do not understand that every "form" was in its first and best use an originality, employed not for the purpose of following any rule, but because it said truly what the artist wished to express. I suppose much of the monotony of subject and treatment observable in modern verse is due to this belief that poetry is merely a fixed way of repeating certain meritorious though highly familiar concepts of existence—and not in the least the infinite music of words meant to speak the little and the great tongues of the earth.

[Pg 25]

It is exhilarating to read the pages of Pope and of Byron, whether you agree with them or not, because here poetry does speak the little and the great tongues of the earth, and sings satires, pastorals and lampoons, literary and dramatic criticism, all manner of fun and sparkling prettiness, sweeping judgments, nice discriminations, fashions, politics, the ways of gentle and simple—love and desire and pain and sorrow, and anguish and death.

The impulse which inspired, and the appreciation which endowed this magazine, has been a generous sympathy with poetry as an art. The existence of a gallery for poems and verse has an especially attractive social value in its power of recalling or creating the beautiful and clarifying pleasure of truly reading poetry in its broad scope and rich variety. The hospitality of this hall will have been a genuine source of happiness if somehow it tells the visitors, either while they are here, or after they have gone to other places, what a delight it is to enjoy a poem, to realize it, to live in the vivid dream it evokes, to hark to its music, to listen to the special magic grace of its own style and composition, and to know that this special grace will say as deeply as some revealing hour with a friend one loves, something nothing else can say—something which is life itself sung in free sympathy beyond the bars of time and space.

E. W.

[Pg 26]


In the huge democracy of our age no interest is too slight to have an organ. Every sport, every little industry requires its own corner, its own voice, that it may find its friends, greet them, welcome them.

The arts especially have need of each an entrenched place, a voice of power, if they are to do their work and be heard. For as the world grows greater day by day, as every member of it, through something he buys or knows or loves, reaches out to the ends of the earth, things precious to the race, things rare and delicate, may be overpowered, lost in the criss-cross of modern currents, the confusion of modern immensities.

Painting, sculpture, music are housed in palaces in the great cities of the world; and every week or two a new periodical is born to speak for one or the other of them, and tenderly nursed at some guardian's expense. Architecture, responding to commercial and social demands, is whipped into shape by the rough and tumble of life and fostered, willy-nilly, by men's material needs. Poetry alone, of all the fine arts, has been left to shift for herself in a world unaware of its immediate and desperate need of her, a world whose great deeds, whose triumphs over matter, over the wilderness, over racial enmities and distances, require her ever-living voice to give them glory and glamour.

[Pg 27]

Poetry has been left to herself and blamed for inefficiency, a process as unreasonable as blaming the desert for barrenness. This art, like every other, is not a miracle of direct creation, but a reciprocal relation between the artist and his public. The people must do their part if the poet is to tell their story to the future; they must cultivate and irrigate the soil if the desert is to blossom as the rose.

The present venture is a modest effort to give to poetry her own place, her own voice. The popular magazines can afford her but scant courtesy—a Cinderella corner in the ashes—because they seek a large public which is not hers, a public which buys them not for their verse but for their stories, pictures, journalism, rarely for their literature, even in prose. Most magazine editors say that there is no public for poetry in America; one of them wrote to a young poet that the verse his monthly accepted "must appeal to the barber's wife of the Middle West," and others prove their distrust by printing less verse from year to year, and that rarely beyond page-end length and importance.

We believe that there is a public for poetry, that it will grow, and that as it becomes more numerous and appreciative the work produced in this art will grow in power, in beauty, in significance. In this belief we have been encouraged by the generous enthusiasm of many subscribers to our fund, by the sympathy of other lovers of the art, and by the quick response of many prominent poets, both American and English, who have sent or promised contributions.

[Pg 28]

We hope to publish in Poetry some of the best work now being done in English verse. Within space limitations set at present by the small size of our monthly sheaf, we shall be able to print poems longer, and of more intimate and serious character, than the popular magazines can afford to use. The test, limited by ever-fallible human judgment, is to be quality alone; all forms, whether narrative, dramatic or lyric, will be acceptable. We hope to offer our subscribers a place of refuge, a green isle in the sea, where Beauty may plant her gardens, and Truth, austere revealer of joy and sorrow, of hidden delights and despairs, may follow her brave quest unafraid.

[Pg 29]


In order that the experiment of a magazine of verse may have a fair trial, over one hundred subscriptions of fifty dollars annually for five years have been promised by the ladies and gentlemen listed below. In addition, nearly twenty direct contributions of smaller sums have been sent or promised. To all these lovers of the art the editors would express their grateful appreciation.

 Mr. H. C. Chatfield-Taylor  Mr. Thomas D. Jones
 Mr. Howard Shaw  Mr. H. H. Kohlsaat
 Mr. Arthur T. Aldis  Mr. Andrew M. Lawrence
 Mr. Edwin S. Fechheimer  Miss Juliet Goodrich
 Mr. D. H. Burnham [B]  Mr. Henry H. Walker
 Mrs. Emmons Blaine (2)  Mr. Charles Deering
 Mr. Wm. S. Monroe  Mr. Jas. Harvey Peirce
 Mr. E. A. Bancroft  Mr. Charles L. Freer
 Mrs. Burton Hanson  Mrs. W. F. Dummer
 Mr. John M. Ewen  Mr. Jas. P. Whedon
 Mr. C. L. Hutchinson  Mr. Arthur Heun
 Mrs. Wm. Vaughan Moody  Mr. Edward F. Carry
 Hon. Wm. J. Calhoun  Mrs. George M. Pullman
⌈ Miss Anna Morgan  Mr. Cyrus H. McCormick (2)
⌊ Mrs. Edward A. Leicht  Mr. F. Stuyvesant Peabody
 Mrs. Louis Betts  Mrs. F. S. Winston
 Mr. Ralph Cudney  Mr. J. J. Glessner
 Mrs. George Bullen ⌈ Mr. C. C. Curtiss
 Mrs. P. A. Valentine ⌊ Mrs. Hermon B. Butler
 Mr. P. A. Valentine  Mr. Will H. Lyford
 Mr. Charles R. Crane  Mr. Horace S. Oakley
 Mr. Frederick Sargent  Mr. Eames Mac Veagh
 Mrs. Frank G. Logan  Mrs. K. M. H. Besly
 Dr. F. W. Gunsaulus  Mr. Charles G. Dawes
 Mrs. Emma B. Hodge  Mr. Clarence Buckingham
 Mr. Wallace Heckman  Mrs. Potter Palmer
 Mr. Edward B. Butler (2)  Mr. Owen F. Aldis
 Miss Elizabeth Ross  Mr. Albert B. Dick
 Mrs. Bryan Lathrop  Mr. Albert H. Loeb
 Mr. Martin A. Ryerson  The Misses Skinner
 Mrs. La Verne Noyes  Mr. Potter Palmer
 Mrs. E. Norman Scott (2)  Miss Mary Rozet Smith
 Mr. Wm. O. Goodman  Misses Alice E. and Margaret D. Moran
 Mrs. Charles Hitchcock ⌈ Mrs. James B. Waller
 Hon. John Barton Payne ⌊ Mr. John Borden

 Mr. Victor F. Lawson

 Mr. Alfred L. Baker[Pg 30]
⌈ Mrs. H. M. Wilmarth  Mr. George A. McKinlock
⌊ Mrs. Norman F. Thompson  Mr. John S. Field
⌈ Mrs. William Blair  Mrs. Samuel Insull
⌊ Mrs. Clarence I. Peck  Mr. William T. Fenton
 Mr. Clarence M. Woolley  Mr. A. G. Becker
 Mr. Edward P. Russell  Mr. Honoré Palmer
 Mrs. Frank O. Lowden  Mr. John J. Mitchell
 Mr. John S. Miller  Mrs. F. A. Hardy
 Miss Helen Louise Birch  Mr. Morton D. Hull
 Nine members of the Fortnightly  Mr. E. F. Ripley
 Six members of the Friday Club  Mr. Ernest MacDonald Bowman
 Seven members of the Chicago Woman's Club  Mr. John A. Kruse
 Mr. William L. Brown  Mr. Frederic C. Bartlett
 Mr. Rufus G. Dawes  Mr. Franklin H. Head
 Mr. Gilbert E. Porter  Mrs. Wm. R. Linn


Through the generosity of five gentlemen, Poetry will give two hundred and fifty dollars in one or two prizes for the best poem or poems printed in its pages the first year. In addition a subscriber to the fund offers twenty-five dollars for the best epigram.


Mr. Maurice Browne, director of the Chicago Little Theatre, offers to produce, during the season of 1913-14, the best play in verse published in, or submitted to, Poetry during its first year; provided that it may be adequately presented under the requirements and limitations of his stage.


We are fortunate in being able, through the courtesy of the Houghton-Mifflin Co., to offer our readers a poem, hitherto unprinted, from advance sheets of the complete works of the late William Vaughan Moody, which will be published in November. The lamentable [Pg 31] death of this poet two years ago in the early prime of his great powers was a calamity to literature. It is fitting that the first number of a magazine published in the city where for years he wrote and taught, should contain an important poem from his hand.

Mr. Ezra Pound, the young Philadelphia poet whose recent distinguished success in London led to wide recognition in his own country, authorizes the statement that at present such of his poetic work as receives magazine publication in America will appear exclusively in Poetry. That discriminating London publisher, Mr. Elkin Mathews, "discovered" this young poet from over seas, and published "Personae," "Exultations" and "Canzoniere," three small volumes of verse from which a selection has been reprinted by the Houghton-Mifflin Co. under the title "Provença." Mr. Pound's latest work is a translation from the Italian of "Sonnets and Ballate," by Guido Cavalcanti.

Mr. Arthur Davison Ficke, another contributor, is a graduate of Harvard, who studied law and entered his father's office in Davenport, Iowa. He is the author of "The Happy Princess" and "The Breaking of Bonds," and a contributor to leading magazines. An early number of Poetry will be devoted exclusively to Mr. Ficke's work.

Mrs. Roscoe P. Conkling is a resident of the state of New York; a young poet who has contributed to various magazines.

[Pg 32]

Miss Lorimer is a young English poet resident in Oxford, who will publish her first volume this autumn. The London Poetry Review, in its August number, introduced her with a group of lyrics which were criticized with some asperity in the New Age and praised with equal warmth in other periodicals.


Miss Dudley, who is a Chicagoan born and bred, is still younger in the art, "To One Unknown" being the first of her poems to be printed.


Poetry will acknowledge the receipt of books of verse and works relating to the subject, and will print brief reviews of those which seem for any reason significant. It will endeavor also to keep its readers informed of the progress of the art throughout the English-speaking world and continental Europe. The American metropolitan newspaper prints cable dispatches about post-impressionists, futurists, secessionists and other radicals in painting, sculpture and music, but so far as its editors and readers are concerned, French poetry might have died with Victor Hugo, and English with Tennyson, or at most Swinburne.

Note.—Eight months after the first general newspaper announcement of our efforts to secure a fund for a magazine of verse, and three or four months after our first use of the title Poetry, a Boston firm of publishers announced a forthcoming periodical of the same kind, to be issued under the same name. The two are not to be confused.


[Pg 33]

POETRY--A Magazine of Verse Vol. I
No. 2
NOVEMBER, 1912  
George Borrow in his Lavengro Tells us of a Welshman, who By some excess of mother-wit Framed a harp and played on it, Built a ship and sailed to sea, And steered it home to melody Of his own making. I, indeed, Might write for Everyman to read A thaumalogue of wonderment More wonderful, but rest content With celebrating one I knew Who built his pipes, and played them, too: No more. Ah, played! Therein is all: The hounded thing, the hunter's call; The shudder, when the quarry's breath Is drowned in blood and stilled in death; [Pg 34] The marriage dance, the pulsing vein, The kiss that must be given again; The hope that Ireland, like a rose, Sees shining thro' her tale of woes; The battle lost, the long lament For blood and spirit vainly spent; And so on, thro' the varying scale Of passion that the western Gael Knows, and by miracle of art Draws to the chanter from the heart Like water from a hidden spring, To leap or murmur, weep or sing.
I see him now, a little man In proper black, whey-bearded, wan, With eyes that scan the eastern hills Thro' thick, gold-rimmèd spectacles. His hand is on the chanter. Lo, The hidden spring begins to flow In waves of magic. (He is dead These seven years, but bend your head And listen.) Rising from the clay The Master plays The Ring of Day. It mounts and falls and floats away Over the sky-line ... then is gone Into the silence of the dawn!
Joseph Campbell [Pg 35]
Three days I heard them grieve when I lay dead, (It was so strange to me that they should weep!) Tall candles burned about me in the dark, And a great crucifix was on my breast, And a great silence filled the lonesome room.
I heard one whisper, "Lo! the dawn is breaking, And he has lost the wonder of the day." Another came whom I had loved on earth, And kissed my brow and brushed my dampened hair. Softly she spoke: "Oh that he should not see The April that his spirit bathed in! Birds Are singing in the orchard, and the grass That soon will cover him is growing green. The daisies whiten on the emerald hills, And the immortal magic that he loved Wakens again—and he has fallen asleep." Another said: "Last night I saw the moon Like a tremendous lantern shine in heaven, And I could only think of him—and sob. For I remembered evenings wonderful When he was faint with Life's sad loveliness, And watched the silver ribbons wandering far Along the shore, and out upon the sea. Oh, I remembered how he loved the world, [Pg 36] The sighing ocean and the flaming stars, The everlasting glamour God has given— His tapestries that wrap the earth's wide room. I minded me of mornings filled with rain When he would sit and listen to the sound As if it were lost music from the spheres. He loved the crocus and the hawthorn-hedge, He loved the shining gold of buttercups, And the low droning of the drowsy bees That boomed across the meadows. He was glad At dawn or sundown; glad when Autumn came With her worn livery and scarlet crown, And glad when Winter rocked the earth to rest. Strange that he sleeps today when Life is young, And the wild banners of the Spring are blowing With green inscriptions of the old delight."
I heard them whisper in the quiet room. I longed to open then my sealèd eyes, And tell them of the glory that was mine. There was no darkness where my spirit flew, There was no night beyond the teeming world. Their April was like winter where I roamed; Their flowers were like stones where now I fared. Earth's day! it was as if I had not known What sunlight meant!... Yea, even as they grieved For all that I had lost in their pale place, I swung beyond the borders of the sky, [Pg 37] And floated through the clouds, myself the air, Myself the ether, yet a matchless being Whom God had snatched from penury and pain To draw across the barricades of heaven. I clomb beyond the sun, beyond the moon; In flight on flight I touched the highest star; I plunged to regions where the Spring is born, Myself (I asked not how) the April wind, Myself the elements that are of God. Up flowery stairways of eternity I whirled in wonder and untrammeled joy, An atom, yet a portion of His dream— His dream that knows no end.... I was the rain, I was the dawn, I was the purple east, I was the moonlight on enchanted nights, (Yet time was lost to me); I was a flower For one to pluck who loved me; I was bliss, And rapture, splendid moments of delight; And I was prayer, and solitude, and hope; And always, always, always I was love. I tore asunder flimsy doors of time, And through the windows of my soul's new sight I saw beyond the ultimate bounds of space. I was all things that I had loved on earth— The very moonbeam in that quiet room, The very sunlight one had dreamed I lost, The soul of the returning April grass, [Pg 38] The spirit of the evening and the dawn, The perfume in unnumbered hawthorn-blooms. There was no shadow on my perfect peace, No knowledge that was hidden from my heart. I learned what music meant; I read the years; I found where rainbows hide, where tears begin; I trod the precincts of things yet unborn.
Yea, while I found all wisdom (being dead), They grieved for me ... I should have grieved for them!
Charles Hanson Towne [Pg 39]
The ancient songs Pass deathward mournfully.
Cold lips that sing no more, and withered wreaths, Regretful eyes, and drooping breasts and wings— Symbols of ancient songs Mournfully passing Down to the great white surges, Watched of none Save the frail sea-birds And the lithe pale girls, Daughters of Okeanos.
And the songs pass From the green land Which lies upon the waves as a leaf On the flowers of hyacinth; And they pass from the waters, The manifold winds and the dim moon, And they come, Silently winging through soft Kimmerian dusk, To the quiet level lands That she keeps for us all, That she wrought for us all for sleep In the silver days of the earth's dawning— Proserpine, daughter of Zeus.
[Pg 40] And we turn from the Kuprian's breasts, And we turn from thee, Phoibos Apollon, And we turn from the music of old And the hills that we loved and the meads, And we turn from the fiery day, And the lips that were over-sweet; For silently Brushing the fields with red-shod feet, With purple robe Searing the flowers as with a sudden flame, Death, Thou hast come upon us.
And of all the ancient songs Passing to the swallow-blue halls By the dark streams of Persephone, This only remains: That in the end we turn to thee, Death, That we turn to thee, singing One last song.
O Death, Thou art an healing wind That blowest over white flowers A-tremble with dew; [Pg 41] Thou art a wind flowing Over long leagues of lonely sea; Thou art the dusk and the fragrance; Thou art the lips of love mournfully smiling; Thou art the pale peace of one Satiate with old desires; Thou art the silence of beauty, And we look no more for the morning; We yearn no more for the sun, Since with thy white hands, Death, Thou crownest us with the pallid chaplets, The slim colorless poppies Which in thy garden alone Softly thou gatherest.
And silently; And with slow feet approaching; And with bowed head and unlit eyes, We kneel before thee: And thou, leaning towards us, Caressingly layest upon us Flowers from thy thin cold hands, And, smiling as a chaste woman Knowing love in her heart, Thou sealest our eyes And the illimitable quietude Comes gently upon us.
Richard Aldington

[Pg 42]

Πὁτνια, πὁτνια [Photnia,  photnia], White grave goddess, Pity my sadness, O silence of Paros.
I am not of these about thy feet, These garments and decorum; I am thy brother, Thy lover of aforetime crying to thee, And thou hearest me not.
I have whispered thee in thy solitudes Of our loves in Phrygia, The far ecstasy of burning noons When the fragile pipes Ceased in the cypress shade, And the brown fingers of the shepherd Moved over slim shoulders; And only the cicada sang.
I have told thee of the hills And the lisp of reeds And the sun upon thy breasts,
And thou hearest me not, Πὁτνια, πὁτνια [Photnia,  photnia], Thou hearest me not.
Richard Aldington

[Pg 43]

I have sat here happy in the gardens, Watching the still pool and the reeds And the dark clouds Which the wind of the upper air Tore like the green leafy boughs Of the divers-hued trees of late summer; But though I greatly delight In these and the water-lilies, That which sets me nighest to weeping Is the rose and white color of the smooth flag-stones, And the pale yellow grasses Among them.
Richard Aldington

[Pg 44]

The dawn is here—and the long night through I have never seen thy face, Though my feet have worn the patient grass at the gate of thy dwelling-place.
While the white moon sailed till, red in the west, it found the far world-edge, No leaflet stirred of the leaves that climb to garland thy window ledge.
Yet the vine had quivered from root to tip, and opened its flowers again, If only the low moon's light had glanced on a moving casement pane.
Warm was the wind that entered in where the barrier stood ajar, And the curtain shook with its gentle breath, white as young lilies are;
But there came no hand all the slow night through to draw the folds aside, (I longed as the moon and the vine-leaves longed!) or to set the casement wide.
[Pg 45]
Three times in a low-hung nest there dreamed his fivesweet notes a bird, And thrice my heart leaped up at the sound I thoughtthou hadst surely heard.
But now that thy praise is caroled aloud by a thousand throats awake, Shall I watch from afar and silently, as under the moon, for thy sake?
Nay—bold in the sun I speak thy name, I too, and I wait no more Thy hand, thy face, in the window niche, but thy kiss at the open door!
My darling, come!—The wings of the dark have wafted the sunset away, And there's room for much in a summer night, but no room for delay.
A still moon looketh down from the sky, and a wavering moon looks up From every hollow in the green hills that holds a pool in its cup.
[Pg 46] The woodland borders are wreathed with bloom—elder, viburnum, rose; The young trees yearn on the breast of the wind that sighs of love as it goes.
The small stars drown in the moon-washed blue but the greater ones abide, With Vega high in the midmost place, Altair not far aside.
The glades are dusk, and soft the grass, where the flower of the elder gleams, Mist-white, moth-like, a spirit awake in the dark of forest dreams.
Arcturus beckons into the east, Antares toward the south, That sendeth a zephyr sweet with thyme to seek for thy sweeter mouth.
Shall the blossom wake, the star look down, all night and have naught to see? Shall the reeds that sing by the wind-brushed pool say nothing of thee and me?
—My darling comes! My arms are content, my feet are guiding her way; There is room for much in a summer night, but no room for delay!
Mrs. Schuyler Van Rensselaer

[Pg 47]

Cold may lie the day, And bare of grace; At night I slip away To the Singing Place.
A border of mist and doubt Before the gate, And the Dancing Stars grow still As hushed I wait. Then faint and far away I catch the beat In broken rhythm and rhyme Of joyous feet,— Lifting waves of sound That will rise and swell (If the prying eyes of thought Break not the spell), Rise and swell and retreat And fall and flee, As over the edge of sleep They beckon me. And I wait as the seaweed waits [Pg 48] For the lifting tide; To ask would be to awake,— To be denied. I cloud my eyes in the mist That veils the hem,— And then with a rush I am past,— I am Theirs, and of Them! And the pulsing chant swells up To touch the sky, And the song is joy, is life, And the song am I! The thunderous music peals Around, o'erhead— The dead would awake to hear If there were dead; But the life of the throbbing Sun Is in the song, And we weave the world anew, And the Singing Throng Fill every corner of space—
Over the edge of sleep I bring but a trace Of the chants that pulse and sweep In the Singing Place.
Lily A. Long

[Pg 49]

Within this narrow cell that I call "me", I was imprisoned ere the worlds began, And all the worlds must run, as first they ran, In silver star-dust, ere I shall be free. I beat my hands against the walls and find It is my breast I beat, O bond and blind!
Lily A. Long

[Pg 50]

Great soldier of the fighting clan, Across Port Arthur's frowning face of stone You drew the battle sword of old Japan, And struck the White Tsar from his Asian throne.
Once more the samurai sword Struck to the carved hilt in your loyal hand, That not alone your heaven-descended lord Should meanly wander in the spirit land.
Your own proud way, O eastern star, Grandly at last you followed. Out it leads To that high heaven where all the heroes are, Lovers of death for causes and for creeds.
Harriet Monroe

[Pg 51]

I have known great gold Sorrows: Majestic Griefs shall serve me watchfully Through the slow-pacing morrows: I have knelt hopeless where sea-echoing Dim endless voices cried of suffering Vibrant and far in broken litany: Where white magnolia and tuberose hauntingly Pulsed their regretful sweets along the air— All things most tragical, most fair, Have still encompassed me ...
I dance where in the screaming market-place The dusty world that watches buys and sells, With painted merriment upon my face, Whirling my bells, Thrusting my sad soul to its mockery.
I have known great gold Sorrows ... Shall they not mock me, these pain-haunted ones, If it shall make them merry, and forget That grief shall rise and set With the unchanging, unforgetting suns Of their relentless morrows?
Margaret Widdemer

[Pg 52]

The little pitiful, worn, laughing faces, Begging of Life for Joy!
I saw the little daughters of the poor, Tense from the long day's working, strident, gay, Hurrying to the picture-place. There curled A hideous flushed beggar at the door, Trading upon his horror, eyeless, maimed, Complacent in his profitable mask. They mocked his horror, but they gave to him From the brief wealth of pay-night, and went in To the cheap laughter and the tawdry thoughts Thrown on the screen; in to the seeking hand Covered by darkness, to the luring voice Of Horror, boy-masked, whispering of rings, Of silks, of feathers, bought—so cheap!—with just Their slender starved child-bodies, palpitant For Beauty, Laughter, Passion, that is Life: (A frock of satin for an hour's shame, A coat of fur for two days' servitude; "And the clothes last," the thought runs on, within The poor warped girl-minds drugged with changeless days; "Who cares or knows after the hour is done?") —Poor little beggars at Life's door for Joy! The old man crouched there, eyeless, horrible, Complacent in the marketable mask That earned his comforts—and they gave to him!
[Pg 53] But ah, the little painted, wistful faces Questioning Life for Joy!
Margaret Widdemer
Floral Design

[Pg 54]




The Poems and Plays of William Vaughn Moody will soon be published in two volumes by the Houghton-Mifflin Co. Our present interest is in the volume of poems, which are themselves an absorbing drama. Moody had a slowly maturing mind; the vague vastness of his young dreams yielded slowly to a man's more definite vision of the spiritual magnificence of life. When he died at two-score years, he was just beginning to think his problem through, to reconcile, after the manner of the great poets of the earth, the world with God. Apparently the unwritten poems cancelled by death would have rounded out, in art of an austere perfection, the record of that reconciliation, for nowhere do we feel this passion of high serenity so strongly as in the first act of an uncompleted drama, The Death of Eve.

Great-minded youth must dream, and modern dreams of the meaning of life lack the props and pillars of the old dogmatism. Vagueness, confusion and despair are a natural inference from the seeming chaos of evil and good, of pain and joy. Moody from the beginning took the whole scheme of things for his province, as a truly heroic poet should; there are always large spaces on his [Pg 55] canvas. In his earlier poetry, both the symbolic Masque of Judgment and the shorter poems derived from present-day subjects, we find him picturing the confusion, stating the case, so to speak, against God. Somewhat in the terms of modern science is his statement—the universe plunging on toward its doom of darkness and lifelessness, divine fervor of creation lapsing, divine fervor of love doubting, despairing of the life it made, sweeping all away with a vast inscrutable gesture.

This seems to be the mood of the Masque of Judgment, a mood against which that very human archangel, Raphael, protests in most appealing lines. The poet broods over the earth—

The earth, that has the blue and little flowers—

with all its passionate pageantry of life and love. Like his own angel he is

a truant still While battle rages round the heart of God.

The lamps are spent at the end of judgment day,

and naked from their seats The stars arise with lifted hands, and wait.

This conflict between love and doubt is the motive also of Gloucester Moors, The Daguerreotype, Old Pourquoi—those three noblest, perhaps, of the present-day poems—also of The Brute and The Menagerie, and of that fine poem manqué, the Ode in Time of Hesitation. The Fie-Bringer is an effort at another theme—redemption, light after darkness. But it is not so spontaneous as the Masque; though simpler, clearer, more dramatic in [Pg 56] form, it is more deliberate and intellectual, and not so star-lit with memorable lines. The Fire-Bringer is an expression of aspiration; the poet longs for light, demands it, will wrest it from God's right hand like Prometheus. But his triumph is still theory, not experience. The reader is hardly yet convinced.

If one feels a grander motive in such poems as the one-act Death of Eve and The Fountain, or the less perfectly achieved I Am the Woman, it is not because of the tales they tell but because of the spirit of faith that is in them—a spirit intangible, indefinable, but indomitable and triumphant. At last, we feel, this poet, already under the shadow of death, sees a terrible splendid sunrise, and offers us the glory of it in his art.

The Fountain is a truly magnificent expression of spiritual triumph in failure, and incidentally of the grandeur of Arizona, that tragic wonderland of ancient and future gods. Those Spanish wanderers, dying in the desert, in whose half-madness dreams and realities mingle, assume in those stark spaces the stature of universal humanity, contending to the last against relentless fate. In the two versions of The Death of Eve, both narrative and dramatic, one feels also this wild, fierce triumph, this faith in the glory of life. Especially in the dramatic fragment, by its sureness of touch and simple austerity of form, and by the majesty of its figure of the aged Eve, Moody's art reached its most heroic height. We have here the beginning of great things.

[Pg 57]

The spirit of this poet may be commended to those facile bards who lift up their voices between the feast and the cigars, whose muses dance to every vague emotion and strike their flimsy lutes for every light-o'-love. Here was one who went to his desk as to an altar, resolved that the fire he lit, the sacrifice he offered, should be perfect and complete. He would burn out his heart like a taper that the world might possess a living light. He would tell once more the grandeur of life; he would sing the immortal song.

That such devotion is easy of attainment in this clamorous age who can believe? Poetry like some of Moody's, poetry of a high structural simplicity, strict and bare in form, pure and austere in ornament, implies a grappling with giants and wrestling with angels; it is not to be achieved without deep living and high thinking, without intense persistent intellectual and spiritual struggle.

H. M.


An Anthology of Modern Bohemian Poetry, translated by P. Selver (Henry J. Drane, London).

This is a good anthology of modern Bohemian poetry, accurately translated into bad and sometimes even ridiculous English. Great credit is due the young translator for his care in research and selection. The faults of his style, though deplorable, are not such as to obscure the force and beauty of his originals. [Pg 58]

One is glad to be thus thoroughly assured that contemporary Bohemia has a literature in verse, sensitive to the outer world and yet national. Mr. Selver's greatest revelation is Petr Bezruc, poet of the mines.

The poetry of Brezina, Sova and Vrchlicky is interesting, but Bezruc's Songs of Silesia have the strength of a voice coming de profundis.

A hundred years in silence I dwelt in the pit,
The dust of the coal has settled upon my eyes—
Bread with coal is the fruit that my toiling bore;—

That is the temper of it. Palaces grow by the Danube nourished by his blood. He goes from labor to labor, he rebels, he hears a voice mocking:

I should find my senses and go to the mine once more—

And in another powerful invective:

I am the first who arose of the people of Teschen.
They follow the stranger's plough, the slaves fare downwards.

He thanks God he is not in the place of the oppressor, and ends:

Thus 'twas done. The Lord wills it. Night sank o'er my people. Our doom was sealed when the night had passed; In the night I prayed to the Demon of Vengeance. The first Beskydian bard and the last.

[Pg 59]

This poet is distinctly worth knowing. He is the truth where our "red-bloods" and magazine socialists are usually a rather boresome pose.

As Mr. Selver has tried to make his anthology representative of all the qualities and tendencies of contemporary Bohemian work it is not to be supposed that they are all of the mettle of Bezruc.

One hears with deep regret that Vrchlicky is just dead, after a life of unceasing activity. He has been a prime mover in the revival of the Czech nationality and literature. He has given them, besides his own work, an almost unbelievable number of translations from the foreign classics, Dante, Schiller, Leopardi. For the rest I must refer the reader to Mr. Selver's introduction.

Ezra Pound


This title-phrase has not been plucked from the spacious lawn of Bartlett's Familiar Quotations. It grew in the agreeable midland yard of Mr. Walt Mason's newspaper verse, and appeared in a tribute of his to Mr. James Whitcomb Riley, whose fifty-ninth birthday anniversary, falling on the seventh of October, has been widely celebrated in the American public libraries and daily press. [Pg 60]

Mr. Riley's fine gift to his public, the special happiness his genius brings to his readers, cannot, for lack of space, be adequately described, or even indicated, here. Perhaps a true, if incomplete, impression of the beauty of his service may be conveyed by repeating a well-known passage of Mr. Lowes Dickinson's Letters from John Chinaman—a passage which I can never read without thinking very gratefully of James Whitcomb Riley, and of what his art has done for American poetry-readers.

Mr. Dickinson says:—

In China our poets and literary men have taught their successors for long generations, to look for good not in wealth, not in power, not in miscellaneous activity, but in a trained, a choice, an exquisite appreciation of the most simple and universal relations of life. To feel, and in order to feel, to express, or at least to understand the expression, of all that is lovely in nature, of all that is poignant and sensitive in man, is to us in itself a sufficient end.... The pathos of life and death, the long embrace, the hand stretched out in vain, the moment that glides forever away, with its freight of music and light, into the shadow and bush of the haunted past, all that we have, all that eludes us, a bird on the wing, a perfume escaped on the gale— to all these things we are trained to respond, and the response is what we call literature.

Among Mr. Riley's many distinguished faculties of execution in expressing, in stimulating, "an exquisite appreciation of the most simple and universal relations of life," one faculty has been, in so far as I know, very little mentioned—I mean his mastery in creating character. Mr. Riley has expressed, has incarnated in the melodies and harmonies of his poems, not merely several [Pg 61] living, breathing human creatures as they are made by their destinies, but a whole world of his own, a vivid world of country-roads, and country-town streets, peopled with farmers and tramps and step-mothers and children, trailing clouds of glory even when they boast of the superiorities of "Renselaer," a world of hardworking women and hard-luck men, and poverty and prosperity, and drunkards and raccoons and dogs and grandmothers and lovers. To have presented through the medium of rhythmic chronicle, a world so sharply limned, so funny, so tragic, so mean, so noble, seems to us in itself a striking achievement in the craft of verse.

No mere word of criticism can of course evoke, at all as example can, Mr. Riley's genius of identification with varied human experiences, the remarkable concentration and lyric skill of his characterization. Here are two poems of his on the same general theme—grief in the presence of death. We may well speak our pride in the wonderful range of inspiration and the poetic endowment which can create on the same subject musical stories of the soul as diverse, as searching, as fresh and true, as the beloved poems of Bereaved and His Mother.

Let me come in where you sit weeping; aye, Let me, who have not any child to die, Weep with you for the little one whose love I have known nothing of.
[Pg 62] The little arms that slowly, slowly loosed Their pressure round your neck; the hands you used To kiss. Such arms, such hands I never knew. May I not weep with you.
Fain would I be of service, say something Between the tears, that would be comforting; But ah! so sadder than yourselves am I, Who have no child to die.
Dead! my wayward boy—my own— Not the Law's, but mine; the good God's free gift to me alone, Sanctified by motherhood.
"Bad," you say: well, who is not? "Brutal"—"With a heart of stone"— And "red-handed." Ah! the hot Blood upon your own!
I come not with downward eyes, To plead for him shamedly: God did not apologize When He gave the boy to me.
Simply, I make ready now For His verdict. You prepare— You have killed us both—and how Will you face us There!
E. W.


Fears have been expressed by a number of friendly critics that Poetry may become a house of refuge for minor poets.

[Pg 63]

The phrase is somewhat worn. Paragraphers have done their worst for the minor poet, while they have allowed the minor painter, sculptor, actor—worst of all, architect—to go scot-free. The world which laughs at the experimenter in verse, walks negligently through our streets, and goes seriously, even reverently, to the annual exhibitions in our cities, examining hundreds of pictures and statues without expecting even the prize-winners to be masterpieces.

During the past year a score or more of cash prizes, ranging from one hundred to fifteen hundred dollars, were awarded in Pittsburgh, Chicago, Washington, New York and Boston for minor works of modern art. No word of superlative praise has been uttered for one of them: the first prize-winner in Pittsburgh was a delicately pretty picture by a second-rate Englishman; in Chicago it was a clever landscape by a promising young American. If a single prize-winner in the entire list, many of which were bought at high prices by public museums, was a masterpiece, no critic has yet dared to say so.

In fact, such a word would be presumptuous, since no contemporary can utter the final verdict. Our solicitous critics should remember that Coleridge, Shelley, Keats, Burns, were minor poets to the subjects of King George the Fourth, Poe and Whitman to the subjects of King Longfellow. Moreover, we might remind them that Drayton, Lovelace, Herrick, and many another delicate lyrist of the anthologies, whose perfect songs show singular tenacity of life, remain minor poets through the slightness of their motive; they created little masterpieces, not great ones.

[Pg 64]

The Open Door will be the policy of this magazine—may the great poet we are looking for never find it shut, or half-shut, against his ample genius! To this end the editors hope to keep free of entangling alliances with any single class or school. They desire to print the best English verse which is being written today, regardless of where, by whom, or under what theory of art it is written. Nor will the magazine promise to limit its editorial comments to one set of opinions. Without muzzles and braces this is manifestly impossible unless all the critical articles are written by one person.


Mr. Ezra Pound has consented to act as foreign correspondent of Poetry, keeping its readers informed of the present interests of the art in England, France and elsewhere.

The response of poets on both sides of the Atlantic has been most encouraging, so that the quality of the next few numbers is assured. One of our most important contributions is Mr. John G. Neihardt's brief recently finished tragedy, The Death of Agrippina, to which an entire number will be devoted within a few months.

[Pg 65]

Mr. Joseph Campbell is one of the younger poets closely associated with the renaissance of art and letters in Ireland. His first book of poems was The Gilly of Christ; a later volume including these is The Mountainy Singer (Maunsel & Co.).

Mr. Charles Hanson Towne, the New York poet and magazine editor, has published three volumes of verse, The Quiet Singer (Rickey), Manhattan, and Youth and Other Poems; also five song-cycles in collaboration with two composers.

Mr. Richard Aldington is a young English poet, one of the "Imagistes," a group of ardent Hellenists who are pursuing interesting experiments in vers libre; trying to attain in English certain subtleties of cadence of the kind which Mallarmé and his followers have studied in French. Mr. Aldington has published little as yet, and nothing in America.

Mrs. Van Rensselaer, the well-known writer on art, began comparatively late to publish verse in the magazines. Her volume, Poems (Macmillan), was issued in 1910.

Miss Long and Miss Widdemer are young Americans, some of whose poems have appeared in various magazines.

The last issue of Poetry accredited Mr. Ezra Pound's Provenca to the Houghton-Mifflin Co. This was an error; Small, Maynard & Co. are Mr. Pound's American publishers. [Pg 66]


The Iscariot, by Eden Phillpotts. John Lane. The Poems of Rosamund Marriott Watson. John Lane. Lyrical Poems, by Lucy Lyttelton. Thomas B. Mosher. The Silence of Amor, by Fiona Macleod, Thomas B. Mosher. Spring in Tuscany and Other Lyrics. Thomas B. Mosher. Interpretations: A Book of First Poems, by Zoë Akins. Mitchell Kennerley. A Round of Rimes, by Denis A. MacCarthy. Little, Brown & Co. Voices from Erin and Other Poems, by Denis A. MacCarthy. Little, Brown & Co. Love and The Year and Other Poems, by Grace Griswold. Duffield & Co. Songs and Sonnets, by Webster Ford. The Rooks Press, Chicago. The Quiet Courage and Other Songs of the Unafraid, by Everard Jack Appleton. Stewart and Kidd Co. In Cupid's Chains and Other Poems, by Benjamin F. Woodcox. Woodcox & Fanner. Maverick, by Hervey White. Maverick Press.

[Pg 67]

POETRY--A Magazine of Verse Vol. I
No. 3
DECEMBER, 1912  
Pour wine and dance, if manhood still have pride, Bring roses, if the rose be yet in bloom; The cataract smokes on the mountain side. Our Father Rosicross is in his tomb.
Pull down the blinds, bring fiddle and clarionet, Let there be no foot silent in the room, Nor mouth with kissing nor the wine unwet. Our Father Rosicross is in his tomb.
In vain, in vain; the cataract still cries, The everlasting taper lights the gloom, All wisdom shut into its onyx eyes. Our Father Rosicross sleeps in his tomb.
William Butler Yeats

[Pg 68]

Dance there upon the shore; What need have you to care For wind or water's roar? And tumble out your hair That the salt drops have wet; Being young you have not known The fool's triumph, nor yet Love lost as soon as won. And he, the best warrior, dead And all the sheaves to bind! What need that you should dread The monstrous crying of wind?
William Butler Yeats
Although crowds gathered once if she but showed her face And even old men's eyes grew dim, this hand alone, Like some last courtier at a gipsy camping place Babbling of fallen majesty, records what's gone. The lineaments, the heart that laughter has made sweet, These, these remain, but I record what's gone. A crowd Will gather and not know that through its very street Once walked a thing that seemed, as it were, a burning cloud.
William Butler Yeats

[Pg 69]

The moments passed as at a play, I had the wisdom love can bring, I had my share of mother wit; And yet for all that I could say, And though I had her praise for it, And she seemed happy as a king, Love's moon was withering away.
Believing every word I said I praised her body and her mind, Till pride had made her eyes grow bright, And pleasure made her cheeks grow red, And vanity her footfall light; Yet we, for all that praise, could find Nothing but darkness overhead.
I sat as silent as a stone And knew, though she'd not said a word, That even the best of love must die, And had been savagely undone Were it not that love, upon the cry Of a most ridiculous little bird, Threw up in the air his marvellous moon.
William Butler Yeats

[Pg 70]

Hope that you may understand. What can books, of men that wive In a dragon-guarded land; Paintings of the dolphin drawn; Sea nymphs, in their pearly waggons, Do but wake the hope to live That had gone With the dragons.
William Butler Yeats

[Pg 71]

Somewhere I read a strange, old, rusty tale Smelling of war; most curiously named "The Mad Recreant Knight of the West." Once, you have read, the round world brimmed with hate, Stirred and revolted, flashed unceasingly Facets of cruel splendor. And the strong Harried the weak ... Long past, long past, praise God In these fair, peaceful, happy days. The Tale: Eastward the Huns break border, Surf on a rotten dyke; They have murdered the Eastern Warder (His head on a pike). "Arm thee, arm thee, my father! "Swift rides the Goddes-bane, "And the high nobles gather "On the plain!"
"O blind world-wrath!" cried Sangar, "Greatly I killed in youth, "I dreamed men had done with anger "Through Goddes truth!" Smiled the boy then in faint scorn, Hard with the battle-thrill; "Arm thee, loud calls the war-horn "And shrill!"
[Pg 72] He has bowed to the voice stentorian, Sick with thought of the grave— He has called for his battered morion And his scarred glaive. On the boy's helm a glove Of the Duke's daughter— In his eyes splendor of love And slaughter.
Hideous the Hun advances Like a sea-tide on sand; Unyielding, the haughty lances Make dauntless stand. And ever amid the clangor, Butchering Hun and Hun, With sorrowful face rides Sangar And his son....
Broken is the wild invader (Sullied, the whole world's fountains); They have penned the murderous raider With his back to the mountains. Yet tho' what had been mead Is now a bloody lake, Still drink swords where men bleed, Nor slake.
[Pg 73] Now leaps one into the press— The Hell 'twixt front and front— Sangar, bloody and torn of dress (He has borne the brunt). "Hold!" cries "Peace! God's Peace! "Heed ye what Christus says—" And the wild battle gave surcease In amaze.
"When will ye cast out hate? "Brothers—my mad, mad brothers— "Mercy, ere it be too late, "These are sons of your mothers. "For sake of Him who died on Tree, "Who of all Creatures, loved the Least,"— "Blasphemer! God of Battles, He!" Cried a priest.
"Peace!" and with his two hands Has broken in twain his glaive. Weaponless, smiling he stands (Coward or brave?) "Traitor!" howls one rank, "Think ye "The Hun be our brother?" And "Fear we to die, craven, think ye?" The other.
[Pg 74] Then sprang his son to his side, His lips with slaver were wet, For he had felt how men died And was lustful yet; (On his bent helm a glove Of the Duke's daughter, In his eyes splendor of love And slaughter)—
Shouting, "Father no more of mine! "Shameful old man—abhorr'd, "First traitor of all our line!" Up the two-handed sword. He smote—fell Sangar—and then Screaming, red, the boy ran Straight at the foe, and again Hell began ...
Oh, there was joy in Heaven when Sangar came. Sweet Mary wept, and bathed and bound his wounds, And God the Father healed him of despair, And Jesus gripped his hand, and laughed and laughed ...
John Reed

[Pg 75]

Soft from the linden's bough, Unmoved against the tranquil afternoon, Eve's dove laments her now: "Ah, gone! long gone! shall not I find thee soon?"
That yearning in his voice Told not to Paradise a sorrow's tale: As other birds rejoice He sang, a brother to the nightingale.
By twilight on her breast He saw the flower sleep, the star awake; And calling her from rest, Made all the dawn melodious for her sake.
And then the Tempter's breath, The sword of exile and the mortal chain— The heritage of death That gave her heart to dust, his own to pain ...
In Eden desolate The seraph heard his lonely music swoon, As now, reiterate; "Ah gone! long gone! shall not I find thee soon?"
George Sterling

[Pg 76]

Thou settest splendors in my sight, O Lord! It seems as tho' a deep-hued sunset falls Forever on these Cyclopean walls— These battlements where Titan hosts have warred, And hewn the world with devastating sword, And shook with trumpets the eternal halls Where seraphim lay hid by bloody palls And only Hell and Silence were adored.
Lo! the abyss wherein great Satan's wings Might gender tempests, and his dragons' breath Fume up in pestilence. Beneath the sun Or starry outposts on terrestrial things, Is no such testimony unto Death Nor altars builded to Oblivion.
George Sterling

[Pg 77]

Musing, between the sunset and the dark, As Twilight in unhesitating hands Bore from the faint horizon's underlands, Silvern and chill, the moon's phantasmal ark, I heard the sea, and far away could mark Where that unalterable waste expands In sevenfold sapphire from the mournful sands, And saw beyond the deep a vibrant spark.
There sank the sun Arcturus, and I thought: Star, by an ocean on a world of thine, May not a being, born like me to die, Confront a little the eternal Naught And watch our isolated sun decline— Sad for his evanescence, even as I?
George Sterling

[Pg 78]

The years are a falling of snow, Slow, but without cessation, On hills and mountains and flowers and worlds that were; But snow and the crawling night in which it fell May be washed away in one swifter hour of flame. Thus it was that some slant of sunset In the chasms of piled cloud— Transient mountains that made a new horizon, Uplifting the west to fantastic pinnacles— Smote warm in a buried realm of the spirit, Till the snows of forgetfulness were gone.
Clear in the vistas of memory, The peaks of a world long unremembered, Soared further than clouds, but fell not, Based on hills that shook not nor melted With that burden enormous, hardly to be believed. Rent with stupendous chasms, Full of an umber twilight, I beheld that larger world.
[Pg 79] Bright was the twilight, sharp like ethereal wine Above, but low in the clefts it thickened, Dull as with duskier tincture. Like whimsical wings outspread but unstirring, Flowers that seemed spirits of the twilight, That must pass with its passing— Too fragile for day or for darkness, Fed the dusk with more delicate hues than its own. Stars that were nearer, more radiant than ours, Quivered and pulsed in the clear thin gold of the sky.
These things I beheld, Till the gold was shaken with flight Of fantastical wings like broken shadows, Forerunning the darkness; Till the twilight shivered with outcry of eldritch voices, Like pain's last cry ere oblivion.
Clark Ashton Smith

[Pg 80]

O winds that pass uncomforted Through all the peacefulness of spring, And tell the trees your sorrowing, That they must moan till ye are fled!
Think ye the Tyrian distance holds The crystal of unquestioned sleep? That those forgetful purples keep No veiled, contentious greens and golds?
Half with communicated grief, Half that they are not free to pass With you across the flickering grass, Mourns each vibrating bough and leaf.
And I, with soul disquieted, Shall find within the haunted spring No peace, till your strange sorrowing Is down the Tyrian distance fled.
Clark Ashton Smith

[Pg 81]

I hear America singing ... And the great prophet passed, Serene, clear and untroubled Into the silence vast.
When will the master-poet Rise, with vision strong, To mold her manifold music Into a living song?
I hear America singing ... Beyond the beat and stress, The chant of her shrill, unjaded, Empiric loveliness.
Laughter, beyond mere scorning, Wisdom surpassing wit, Love, and the unscathed spirit, These shall encompass it.
Alice Corbin

[Pg 82]

Who was it built the cradle of wrought gold? A druid, chanting by the waters old. Who was it kept the sword of vision bright? A warrior, falling darkly in the fight. Who was it put the crown upon the dove? A woman, paling in the arms of love. Oh, who but these, since Adam ceased to be, Have kept their ancient guard about the Tree?
Alice Corbin
I saw a star fall in the night, And a grey moth touched my cheek; Such majesty immortals have, Such pity for the weak.
Alice Corbin

[Pg 83]

The endless, foolish merriment of stars Beside the pale cold sorrow of the moon, Is like the wayward noises of the world Beside my heart's uplifted silent tune.
The little broken glitter of the waves Beside the golden sun's intense white blaze, Is like the idle chatter of the crowd Beside my heart's unwearied song of praise.
The sun and all the planets in the sky Beside the sacred wonder of dim space, Are notes upon a broken, tarnished lute That God will someday mend and put in place.
And space, beside the little secret joy Of God that sings forever in the clay, Is smaller than the dust we can not see, That yet dies not, till time and space decay.
And as the foolish merriment of stars Beside the cold pale sorrow of the moon, My little song, my little joy, my praise, Beside God's ancient, everlasting rune.
Alice Corbin

[Pg 84]



Thou hast made me known to friends whom I knew not. Thou hast given me seats in homes not my own. Thou hast brought the distant near and made a brother of the stranger. I am uneasy at heart when I have to leave my accustomed shelter; I forgot that there abides the old in the new, and that there also thou abidest.

Through birth and death, in this world or in others, wherever thou leadest me it is thou, the same, the one companion of my endless life who ever linkest my heart with bonds of joy to the unfamiliar. When one knows thee, then alien there is none, then no door is shut. Oh, grant me my prayer that I may never lose the bliss of the touch of the One in the play of the many.


No more noisy, loud words from me, such is my master's will. Henceforth I deal in whispers. The speech of my heart will be carried on in murmurings of a song.

Men hasten to the King's market. All the buyers and sellers are there. But I have my untimely leave in the middle of the day, in the thick of work.

Let then the flowers come out in my garden, though it is not their time, and let the midday bees strike up their lazy hum. [Pg 85]

Full many an hour have I spent in the strife of the good and the evil, but now it is the pleasure of my playmate of the empty days to draw my heart on to him, and I know not why is this sudden call to what useless inconsequence!


On the day when the lotus bloomed, alas, my mind was straying, and I knew it not. My basket was empty and the flower remained unheeded.

Only now and again a sadness fell upon me, and I started up from my dream and felt a sweet trace of a strange smell in the south wind.

That vague fragrance made my heart ache with longing, and it seemed to me that it was the eager breath of the summer seeking for its completion.

I knew not then that it was so near, that it was mine, and this perfect sweetness had blossomed in the depth of my own heart.


By all means they try to hold me secure who love me in this world. But it is otherwise with thy love, which is greater than theirs, and thou keepest me free. Lest I forget them they never venture to leave me alone. But day passes by after day and thou are not seen.

If I call not thee in my prayers, if I keep not thee in my heart—thy love for me still waits for my love. [Pg 86]


I was not aware of the moment when I first crossed the threshold of this life. What was the power that made me open out into this vast mystery like a bud in the forest at midnight? When in the morning I looked upon the light I felt in a moment that I was no stranger in this world, that the inscrutable without name and form had taken me in its arms in the form of my own mother. Even so, in death the same unknown will appear as ever known to me. And because I love this life, I know I shall love death as well. The child cries out when from the right breast the mother takes it away to find in the very next moment its consolation in the left one.


Thou art the sky and thou art the nest as well. Oh, thou beautiful, there in the nest it is thy love that encloses the soul with colours and sounds and odours. There comes the morning with the golden basket in her right hand bearing the wreath of beauty, silently to crown the earth. And there comes the evening over the lonely meadows deserted by herds, through trackless paths, carrying cool draughts of peace in her golden pitcher from the western ocean of rest.

But there, where spreads the infinite sky for the soul to take her flight in, reigns the stainless white radiance. There is no day nor night, nor form nor colour, and never never a word.

Rabindranath Tagore

[Pg 87]




I t is curious that the influence of Poe upon Baudelaire, Verlaine, and Mallarmé, and through them upon English poets, and then through these last upon Americans, comes back to us in this round-about and indirect way. We have here an instance of what Whitman calls a "perfect return." We have denied Poe, we do not give him his full meed of appreciation even today, and yet we accept him through the disciples who have followed or have assimilated his tradition. And now that young Englishmen are beginning to feel the influence of Whitman upon French poetry, it may be that he too, through the imitation of vers libre in America, will begin to experience a "perfect return."

Must we always accept American genius in this round-about fashion? Have we no true perspective that we applaud mediocrity at home, and look abroad for genius, only to find that it is of American origin?

This bit of marginalia, extracted from a note-book of 1909, was relieved of the necessity of further elaboration by supplementary evidence received in one day from two correspondents. One, a brief sentence from Mr. Allen Upward: "It is much to be wished that America should learn to honor her sons without waiting for the literary cliques of London."

[Pg 88]

The other, the following "news note" from Mr. Paul Scott Mowrer in Paris. The date of Léon Bazalgette's translation, however, is hardly so epochal as it would seem, since Whitman has been known for many years in France, having been partly translated during the nineties.

Mr. Mowrer writes:

"It is significant of American tardiness in the development of a national literary tradition that the name of Walt Whitman is today a greater influence with the young writers of the continent than with our own. Not since France discovered Poe has literary Europe been so moved by anything American. The suggestion has even been made that 'Whitmanism' is rapidly to supersede 'Nietzscheism' as the dominant factor in modern thought. Léon Bazalgette translated Leaves of Grass into French in 1908. A school of followers of the Whitman philosophy and style was an almost immediate consequence. Such of the leading reviews as sympathize at all with the strong 'young' movement to break the shackles of classicism which have so long bound French prosody to the heroic couplet, the sonnet, and the alexandrine, are publishing not only articles on 'Whitmanism' as a movement, but numbers of poems in the new flexible chanting rhythms. In this regard La Nouvelle Revue Francaise, La Renaissance Contemporaine, and L'Effort Libre have been preëminently hospitable.

[Pg 89]

"The new poems are not so much imitations of Whitman as inspirations from him. Those who have achieved most success in the mode thus far are perhaps Georges Duhamel, a leader of the 'Jeunes,' whose plays are at present attracting national notice; André Spire, who writes with something of the apostolic fervor of his Jewish ancestry; Henri Franck, who died recently, shortly after the publication of his volume, La Danse Devant l'Arche; Charles Vildrac, with Le Livre d'Amour; Philéas Lebesgue, the appearance in collected form of whose Les Servitudes is awaited with keen interest; and finally, Jean Richard Bloch, editor of L'Effort Libre, whose prose, for example in his book of tales entitled Levy, is said to be directly rooted in Whitmanism.

"In Germany, too, the rolling intonations of the singer of democracy have awakened echoes. The Moderne Weltdichtung has announced itself, with Whitman as guide, and such apostles as Wilhelm Schmidtbonn, in Lobegesang des Lebens, and Ernst Lissauer in Der Acker and Der Strom.

[Pg 90]

"What is it about Whitman that Europe finds so inspiriting? First, his acceptance of the universe as he found it, his magnificently shouted comradeship with all nature and all men. Such a doctrine makes an instant though hardly logical appeal in nations where socialism is the political order of the day. And next, his disregard of literary tradition. Out of books more books, and out of them still more, with the fecundity of generations. But in this process of literary propagation thought, unfortunately, instead of arising like a child ever fresh and vigorous as in the beginning, grows more and more attenuated, paler, more sickly. The acclaim of Whitman is nothing less than the inevitable revolt against the modern flood of book-inspired books. Write from nature directly, from the people directly, from the political meeting, and the hayfield, and the factory—that is what the august American seems to his young disciples across the seas to be crying to them.

"Perhaps it is because America already holds as commonplaces these fundamentals seeming so new to Europe that the Whitman schools have sprung up stronger on the eastern side of the Atlantic than on the western."

It is not that America holds as commonplaces the fundamentals expressed in Whitman that there have been more followers of the Whitman method in Europe than in America, but that American poets, approaching poetry usually through terms of feeling, and apparently loath to apply an intellectual whip to themselves or others, have made no definite analysis of the rhythmic units of Whitman. We have been content to accept the English conception of the "barbaric yawp" of Whitman. The curious mingling of the concrete and the spiritual, which is what certain modern painters, perhaps under the Whitman suggestion, are trying to achieve, was so novel as to be disconcerting, and the vehicle so [Pg 91] original as to appear uncouth—uncadenced, unmusical. The hide-bound, antiquated conception of English prosody is responsible for a great deal of dead timber. It is a significant fact that the English first accepted the spirit of Whitman, the French his method. The rhythmic measure of Whitman has yet to be correctly estimated by English and American poets. It has been sifted and weighed by the French poets, and though Whitman's influence upon modern French poetry has been questioned by English critics, the connection between his varied rhythmic units and modern vers libre is too obvious to be discounted. There may be an innate necessity sufficient to cause a breaking-up of forms in a poetic language, but there is no reason to believe that Paris, the great clearing-house of all the arts, would not be quick to adopt a suggestion from without. English poets, certainly, have not been loath to accept suggestions from Paris.

At any rate this international acceptance of the two greatest American poets, and the realization of their international influence upon us, may awaken us to a new sense of responsibility. It would be a valuable lesson, if only we could learn to turn the international eye, in private, upon ourselves. If the American poet can learn to be less parochial, to apply the intellectual whip, to visualize his art, to separate it and see it apart from himself; we may learn then to appreciate the great poet when he is "in our midst." and not wait for the approval of English or French critics.

A. C. H.

[Pg 92]


The appearance of the poems of Rabindranath Tagore, translated by himself from Bengali into English, is an event in the history of English poetry and of world poetry. I do not use these terms with the looseness of contemporary journalism. Questions of poetic art are serious, not to be touched upon lightly or in a spirit of bravura.

Bengal is a nation of fifty million people. The great age of Bengali literature is this age in which we live. And the first Bengali whom I heard singing the lyrics of Tagore said, as simply as one would say it is four o'clock, "Yes, we speak of it as the Age of Rabindranath."

The six poems now published were chosen from a hundred lyrics about to appear in book form. They might just as well have been any other six, for they do not represent a summit of attainment but an average.

These poems are cast, in the original, in metres perhaps the most finished and most subtle of any known to us. If you refine the art of the troubadours, combine it with that of the Pleiade, and add to that the sound-unit principle of the most advanced artists in vers libre, you would get something like the system of Bengali verse. The sound of it when spoken is rather like good Greek, for Bengali is daughter of Sanscrit, which is a kind of uncle or elder brother of the Homeric idiom.

[Pg 93]

All this series of a hundred poems are made to music, for "Mr." Tagore is not only the great poet of Bengal, he is also their great musician. He teaches his songs, and they are sung throughout Bengal more or less as the troubadours' songs were sung through Europe in the twelfth century.

And we feel here in London, I think, much as the people of Petrarch's time must have felt about the mysterious lost language, the Greek that was just being restored to Europe after centuries of deprivation. That Greek was the lamp of our renaissance and its perfections have been the goal of our endeavor ever since.

I speak with all seriousness when I say that this beginning of our more intimate intercourse with Bengal is the opening of another period. For one thing the content of this first brief series of poems will destroy the popular conception of Buddhism, for we in the Occident are apt to regard it as a religion negative and anti-Christian.

The Greek gave us humanism; a belief in mens sana in corpore sano, a belief in proportion and balance. The Greek shows us man as the sport of the gods; the sworn foe of fate and the natural forces. The Bengali brings to us the pledge of a calm which we need overmuch in an age of steel and mechanics. It brings a quiet proclamation of the fellowship between man and the gods; between man and nature.

[Pg 94]

It is all very well to object that this is not the first time we have had this fellowship proclaimed, but in the arts alone can we find the inner heart of a people. There is a deeper calm and a deeper conviction in this eastern expression than we have yet attained. It is by the arts alone that one people learns to meet another far distant people in friendship and respect.

I speak with all gravity when I say that world-fellowship is nearer for the visit of Rabindranath Tagore to London.

Ezra Pound


The Poems of Rosamund Marriott Watson (John Lane.)

This English poet, whose singing ceased a year ago, had a real lyric gift, though a very slight one. The present volume is a collection of all her poems, from the first girlish sheaf Tares, to The Lamp and the Lute, which she was preparing for publication when she died.

Through this whole life-record her poetry ripples along as smoothly and delicately as a meadow rill, with never a pause nor a flurry nor a thrill. She sings prettily of everyone, from the Last Fairy to William Ernest Henley, and of everything, from Death and Justice to the Orchard of the Moon, but she has nothing arresting or important to say of any of these subjects, and no keen magic of phrase to give her warbling that intense vitality which would win for her the undying fame prophesied by her loyal husband in his preface.

[Pg 95]

Nevertheless, her feeling is genuine, her touch light, and her tune a quiet monotone of gentle soothing music which has a certain soft appeal. Perhaps the secret of it is the fine quality of soul which breathes through these numerous lyrics, a soul too reserved to tell its whole story, and too preoccupied with the little things around and within her to pay much attention to the thinking, fighting, ever-moving world without.

A big-spirited, vital, headlong narrative poem is The Adventures of Young Maverick, by Hervey White, who runs a printing press at Woodstock, N. Y., and bravely publishes The Wild Hawk, his own little magazine. The poem has as many moods as Don Juan, which is plainly, though not tyrannically, its model.

The poem is long for these days—five cantos and nearly six hundred Spenserian stanzas. Yet the most casual reader, one would think, could scarcely find it tedious, even though the satirical passages run heavily at times. The hero is a colt of lofty Arabian lineage, and the poem becomes eloquently pictorial in setting forth his beauty:

Young Maverick in the upland pastures lay Woven as in the grass, while star-like flowers, Shaking their petals down in sweet array Dappled his flanks with gentle breathless showers. The thread green stems, tangled in bending bowers, Their pollen plumes of dust closed over him, Enwoofing through the drowse of summer hours, The pattern of his body, head and limb; His color of pale gold glowed as with sunshine dim.

[Pg 96]

The spirit of the West is in this poem, its freedom, spaciousness, strong sunshine; also its careless good humor and half sardonic fun. The race between the horse and the Mexican boy is as swift, vivid and rhythmical as a mountain stream; and the Mexican family, even to the fat old Gregorio, are characterized to the life, with a sympathy only too rare among writers of the Anglo-Saxon race.

Certain other characterizations are equally incisive, this for example:

Sometimes I peep into a modern poet Like Arthur Symons, vaguely beautiful, Who loves but love, not caring who shall know it; I wonder that he never finds it dull.

Mr. White is so profoundly a democrat, and so wholeheartedly a poet of the broad, level average American people, that both social and artistic theories sit very lightly upon him. He achieves beauty as by chance now and then, because he can not help it, but always he achieves a warm vitality, the persuasive illusion of life.

The Iscariot, by Eden Phillpotts (John Lane), is the ingenious effort of a theorist in human nature to unroll the convolutions of the immortal traitor's soul. And it is as ineffectual as any such effort must be to remould characters long fixed in literary or historic tradition. In the art of the world Judas is Judas; anyone who tries to make him over into a pattern of misguided loyalty has his labor for his pains.

The blank verse in which the monologue is uttered is accurately measured and sufficiently sonorous.

H. M.

[Pg 97]

Interpretations: A Book of First Poems, by Zoë Akins (Mitchell Kennerley).

The poems in this volume are creditable in texture, revealing a conscious sense of artistic workmanship which it is a pleasure to find in a book of first poems by a young American. A certain rhythmic monotony may be mentioned as an impression gained from a consecutive reading, and a prevailing twilight mood, united, in the longer poems, with a vein of the emotionally feminine.

Two short lyrics, however, I Am the Wind and The Tragedienne, stand apart in isolated perfection, even as the two Greek columns in the ruined theater at Arles; an impression recalled by the opening stanza of The Tragedienne:

Upon a hill in Thessaly Stand broken columns in a line About a cold forgotten shrine Beneath a moon in Thessaly.

This is the first of the monthly volumes of poetry to be issued by Mr. Kennerley. It awakens pleasant anticipation of those to follow.

Lyrical Poems, By Lucy Lyttelton. (Thomas B. Mosher.)

The twilight mood also prevails in the poems of Lucy Lyttelton, although the crest of a fine modern impulse may be traced in A Vision, The Japanese Widow, The Black Madonna, and A Song of Revolution.

[Pg 98]

"Where is Owen Griffiths?" Broken and alone Crushed he lies in darkness beneath Festiniog stone. "Bring his broken body before me to the throne For a crown.
"Oftentimes in secret in prayer he came to me, Now to men and angels I know him openly. I that was beside him when he came to die Fathoms down.
"And, Evan Jones, stand forward, whose life was shut in gloom, And a narrow grave they gave you 'twixt marble tomb and tomb. But now the great that trod you shall give you elbow room And renown."

These poems unite delicacy and strength. They convince us of sincerity and intensity of vision.

A. C. H.

[Pg 99]


It is hardly necessary to introduce to the lovers of lyric and dramatic verse Mr. William Butler Yeats, who honors the Christmas number of Poetry by his presence. A score or more of years have passed since his voice, perfect in quality, began to speak and sing in high loyalty to the beauty of poetic art, especially the ancient poetic art of his own Irish people. His influence, reinforced by the prompt allegiance of Lady Gregory, Mr. Douglass Hyde, the late J. M. Synge, and many other Irish men and women of letters, has sufficed to lift the beautiful old Gaelic literature out of the obscurity of merely local recognition into a position of international importance. This fact alone is a sufficient acknowledgment of Mr. Yeats' genius, and of the enthusiasm which his leadership has inspired among the thinkers and singers of his race.

Mr. George Sterling, of Carmel-by-the-Sea, California, is well known to American readers of poetry through his two books of verse, Wine of Wizardry and The House of Orchids.

Mr. Clark Ashton Smith, also of California, is a youth whose talent has been acclaimed quite recently by a few newspapers of his own state, and recognized by one or two eastern publications.

[Pg 100]

Mr. John Reed, of New York, and Alice Corbin, the wife of William P. Henderson, the Chicago painter, are Americans. The latter has contributed verse and prose to various magazines. The former is a young journalist, born in 1887, who has published little verse as yet.

Rabindranath Tagore, the poet of Bengal, is sufficiently introduced by Mr. Pound's article.


The Vaunt of Man and Other Poems, by William Ellery Leonard. B. W. Huebsch. Romance, Vision and Satire: English Alliterative Poems of the XIV Century, Newly Rendered in the Original Metres, by Jessie L. Weston. Houghton Mifflin Co. Etain The Beloved, by James H. Cousins. Maunsel & Co. Uriel and Other Poems, by Percy MacKaye. Houghton Mifflin Co. The Unconquered Air, by Florence Earle Coates. Houghton Mifflin Co. A Dome of Many-Coloured Glass, by Amy Lowell. Houghton Mifflin Co. The Lure of the Sea, by J. E. Patterson. George H. Doran Co. The Roadside Fire, by Amelia Josephine Burr. George H. Doran Co. By the Way. Verses, Fragments and Notes, by William Allingham. Arranged by Helen Allingham. Longmans, Green & Co. Gabriel, A Pageant of Vigil, by Isabelle Howe Fiske. Thomas B. Mosher. Pilgrimage to Haunts of Browning, by Pauline Leavens. The Bowrons, Chicago. The Wind on the Heath, Ballads and Lyrics, by May Byron. George H. Doran. Valley Song and Verse, by William Hutcheson. Fraser, Asher & Co. The Queen of Orplede, by Charles Wharton Stork. Elkin Mathews. Pocahontas, A Pageant, by Margaret Ullman. The Poet Lore Co. Poems, by Robert Underwood Johnson. The Century Co. Songs Before Birth, Isabelle Howe Fiske. Thomas B. Mosher. Book Titles From Shakespeare, by Volney Streamer. Thomas B. Mosher. A Bunch of Blossoms, Little Verses for Little Children, by E. Gordon Browne. Longmans, Green & Co. June on the Miami, by William Henry Venable. Stewart & Kidd. The Tragedy of Etarre, A Poem, by Rhys Carpenter. Sturgis & Walton Co. In Other Words, by Franklin P. Adams. Doubleday, Page & Co. Verses and Sonnets, by Julia Stockton Dinsmore. Doubleday, Page & Co. Anna Marcella's Book of Verses, by Cyrenus Cole. Printed for Personal Distribution. Atala, An American Idyl, by Anna Olcott Commelin. E. P. Dutton & Co. Spring in Tuscany, an Authology. Thos. B. Mosher.

[Pg 101]

POETRY--A Magazine of Verse Vol. I
No. 4
JANUARY, 1913  
GENERAL WILLIAM BOOTH ENTERS INTO HEAVEN   (To be sung to the tune of  The Blood Of The Lamb with indicated instruments.)
Booth led boldly with his big bass drum. Are you washed in the blood of the Lamb? The saints smiled gravely, and they said, "He's come," Are you washed in the blood of the Lamb?Bass Drum Walking lepers followed, rank on rank, Lurching bravos from the ditches dank, Drabs from the alleyways and drug-fiends pale— Minds still passion-ridden, soul-powers frail! Vermin-eaten saints with mouldy breath, Unwashed legions with the ways of death— Are you washed in the blood of the Lamb?
Every slum had sent its half-a-score The round world over—Booth had groaned for more. Every banner that the wide world flies

[Pg 102]

Bloomed with glory and transcendent dyes. Big-voiced lasses made their banjos bang! Tranced, fanatical, they shrieked and sang,Banjo Are you washed in the blood of the Lamb? Hallelujah! It was queer to see Bull-necked convicts with that land make free! Loons with bazoos blowing blare, blare, blare— On, on, upward through the golden air. Are you washed in the blood of the Lamb?
Booth died blind, and still by faith he trod, Eyes still dazzled by the ways of God.Bass drums Booth led boldly and he looked the chief:slower and softer Eagle countenance in sharp relief, Beard a-flying, air of high command Unabated in that holy land.
Jesus came from out the Court-House door, Stretched his hands above the passing poor. Booth saw not, but led his queer ones thereFlutes Round and round the mighty Court-House square. Yet in an instant all that blear review Marched on spotless, clad in raiment new. The lame were straightened, withered limbs uncurled And blind eyes opened on a new sweet world.
[Pg 103] Drabs and vixens in a flash made whole!Bass drums Gone was the weasel-head, the snout, the jowl;louder and faster Sages and sibyls now, and athletes clean. Rulers of empires, and of forests green!
The hosts were sandalled and their wings were fire— Are you washed in the blood of the Lamb? But their noise played havoc with the angel-choir.Grand Chorus— Are you washed in the blood of the Lamb?tambourines— Oh, shout Salvation! it was good to seeall instruments Kings and princes by the Lamb set full blast The banjos rattled, and the tambourines Jing-jing-jingled in the hands of queens!
And when Booth halted by the curb for prayer He saw his Master through the flag-filled air.Reverently sung— Christ came gently with a robe and crownno instruments For Booth the soldier while the throng knelt down. He saw King Jesus—they were face to face, And he knelt a-weeping in that holy place. Are you washed in the blood of the Lamb?
Nicholas Vachel Lindsay

[Pg 104]

Briar and fennel and chincapin, And rue and ragweed everywhere; The field seemed sick as a soul with sin, Or dead of an old despair, Born of an ancient care.
The cricket's cry and the locust's whirr, And the note of a bird's distress, With the rasping sound of the grasshopper, Clung to the loneliness Like burrs to a trailing dress.
So sad the field, so waste the ground, So curst with an old despair, A woodchuck's burrow, a blind mole's mound, And a chipmunk's stony lair, Seemed more than it could bear.
So lonely, too, so more than sad, So droning-lone with bees— I wondered what more could Nature add To the sum of its miseries ... And then—I saw the trees.
[Pg 105] Skeletons gaunt that gnarled the place, Twisted and torn they rose— The tortured bones of a perished race Of monsters no mortal knows, They startled the mind's repose.
And a man stood there, as still as moss, A lichen form that stared; With an old blind hound that, at a loss, Forever around him fared With a snarling fang half bared.
I looked at the man; I saw him plain; Like a dead weed, gray and wan, Or a breath of dust. I looked again— And man and dog were gone, Like wisps of the graying dawn....
Were they a part of the grim death there— Ragweed, fennel, and rue? Or forms of the mind, an old despair, That there into semblance grew Out of the grief I knew?
Madison Cawein

[Pg 106]

Here among the beeches Winds and wild perfume, That the twilight pleaches Into gleam and gloom, Build for her a room.
Her, whose Beauty cometh, Misty as the morn, When the wild bee hummeth, At its honey-horn, In the wayside thorn.
As the wood grows dimmer, With the drowsy night, Like a moonbeam glimmer Here she walks in white, With a firefly-light.
Moths around her flitting, Like a moth she goes; Here a moment sitting By this wilding rose, With my heart's repose.
[Pg 107] Every bough that dances Has assumed the grace Of her form: and Fancies, Flashed from eye and face, Brood about the place.
And the water, shaken In its plunge and poise, To itself has taken Quiet of her voice, And restrains its joys.
Would that these could tell me What and whence she is; She, who doth enspell me, Fill my soul with bliss Of her spirit kiss.
Though the heart beseech her, And the soul implore, Who is it may reach her— Safe behind the door Of all woodland lore?
Madison Cawein

[Pg 108]

Earth, I dare not cling to thee Lest I should lose my precious soul.
'Tis not more wondrous than the fluff Within the milkweed's autumn boll.
Earth, shall my sacred essences But sink into thy senseless dust?
The springtide takes its way with them— And blossoms blow as blossoms must.
Earth, I swear with solemn vow, I feel a greatness in my breath!
The grass-seed hath its dream of God, Its visioning of life and death.
Anita Fitch

[Pg 109]

Two lovers wakened in their tombs— They had been dead a hundred years— And in the langue of old Provence They spoke of ancient tears.
"M'amour," she called, "I've pardoned you;" (How sad her dreaming seemed to be!) "When I had kissed your dead face once Love's sweet returned to me."
"M'amour," he called, "it was too late." (How dreary seemed his ghostly sighs!) "Blessed the soul that love forgives," He whispered, "ere it dies."
And then they turned again and slept With must and mold in ancient way; And so they'll sleep and wake, 'tis told, Until the Judgment Day.
O damoiseau et damoiselle, Guard ye your loving while ye live! Sin not against love's sacred flame— While yet ye may, forgive.
Anita Fitch

[Pg 110]

The morning wind is wooing me; her lips have swept my brow. Was ever dawn so sweet before? the land so fair as now? The wanderlust is luring to wherever roads may lead, While yet the dew is on the hedge. So how can I but heed?
The forest whispers of its shades; of haunts where we have been,— And where may friends be better made than under God's green inn? Your mouth is warm and laughing and your voice is calling low, While yet the dew is on the hedge. So how can I but go?
The bees are humming, humming in the clover; The bobolink is singing in the rye; The brook is purling, purling in the valley, And the river's laughing, radiant, to the sky!
The buttercups are nodding in the sunlight; The winds are whispering, whispering to the pine; The joy of June has found me; as an aureole it's crowned me Because, oh best belovèd, you are mine!
[Pg 111] NIGHT
In Arcady by moonlight, (Where only lovers go), There is a pool where only The fairest roses grow.
Why are the moonlit roses So sweet beyond compare? Among their purple shadows My love is waiting there.
To Arcady by moonlight The roads are open wide, But only joy can enter And only joy abide.
There is the peace unending That perfect faith can know— In Arcady by moonlight, Where only lovers go.
Kendall Banning

[Pg 112]

As one within a moated tower, I lived my life alone; And dreamed not other granges' dower, Nor ways unlike mine own. I thought I loved. But all alone As one within a moated tower I lived. Nor truly knew One other mortal fortune's hour. As one within a moated tower, One fate alone I knew. Who hears afar the break of day Before the silvered air Reveals her hooded presence gray, And she, herself, is there? I know not how, but now I see The road, the plain, the pluming tree, The carter on the wain. On my horizon wakes a star. The distant hillsides wrinkled far Fold many hearts' domain. On one the fire-worn forests sweep, Above a purple mountain-keep And soar to domes of snow. One heart has swarded fountains deep Where water-lilies blow: [Pg 113] And one, a cheerful house and yard, With curtains at the pane, Board-walks down lawns all clover-starred, And full-fold fields of grain. As one within a moated tower I lived my life alone; And dreamed not other granges' dower Nor ways unlike mine own. But now the salt-chased seas uncurled And mountains trooped with pine Are mine. I look on all the world And all the world is mine.
Edith Wyatt

[Pg 114]

Ah Happiness: Who called you "Earandel"? (Winter-star, I think, that is); And who can tell the lovely curve By which you seem to come, then swerve Before you reach the middle-earth? And who is there can hold your wing, Or bind you in your mirth, Or win you with a least caress, Or tear, or kiss, or anything— Insensate happiness?
Once I thought to have you Fast there in a child: All her heart she gave you, Yet you would not stay. Cruel, and careless, Not half reconciled, Pain you cannot bear; When her yellow hair Lay matted, every tress; When those looks of hers, Were no longer hers, You went: in a day She wept you all away.
[Pg 115] Once I thought to give You, plighted, holily— No more fugitive, Returning like the sea: But they that share so well Heaven must portion Hell In their copartnery: Care, ill fate, ill health, Came we know not how And broke our commonwealth. Neither has you now.
Some wait you on the road, Some in an open door Look for the face you show'd Once there—no more. You never wear the dress You danced in yesterday; Yet, seeming gone, you stay, And come at no man's call: Yet, laid for burial, You lift up from the dead Your laughing, spangled head.
[Pg 116] Yes, once I did pursue You, unpursuable; Loved, longed for, hoped for you— Blue-eyed and morning brow'd. Ah, lovely happiness! Now that I know you well, I dare not speak aloud Your fond name in a crowd; Nor conjure you by night, Nor pray at morning-light, Nor count at all on you:
But, at a stroke, a breath, After the fear of death, Or bent beneath a load; Yes, ragged in the dress, And houseless on the road, I might surprise you there. Yes: who of us shall say When you will come, or where? Ask children at their play, The leaves upon the tree, The ships upon the sea, Or old men who survived, And lived, and loved, and wived. Ask sorrow to confess Your sweet improvidence, And prodigal expense And cold economy, Ah, lovely happiness!
Ernest Rhys

[Pg 117]

When she is ill my laughter cowers; An exile with a broken rhyme, My head upon the breast of time, I hear the heart-beat of the hours; I close my eyes without a sigh; The vision of her flutters by As glints the light of Mary's eyes Upon the lakes in Paradise.
I seem to reach an olden town And enter at the sunset gate; And as the streets I hurry down, I find the men are all elate, As if an angel of the Lord Had passed with dearest word and nod, Remembered like a yearning chord Of songs the people sing to God; I come upon the sunrise gate— As silent as her listless room— There seven beggers sing and wait And this the song that breaks the gloom:
God a 'mercy is most kind; She the fairest passed this way; We the lowest were not blind; God a 'mercy bless the day.
Roscoe W. Brink

[Pg 118]

"The Anthology"

The hard sand breaks, And the grains of it Are clear as wine.
Far off over the leagues of it, The wind, Playing on the wide shore, Piles little ridges, And the great waves Break over it.
But more than the many-foamed ways Of the sea, I know him Of the triple path-ways, Hermes, Who awaiteth.
[Pg 119] Dubious, Facing three ways, Welcoming wayfarers, He whom the sea-orchard Shelters from the west, From the east Weathers sea-wind; Fronts the great dunes.
Wind rushes Over the dunes, And the coarse, salt-crusted grass Answers.
Heu, It whips round my ankles!
Small is This white stream, Flowing below ground From the poplar-shaded hill, But the water is sweet.
Apples on the small trees Are hard, Too small, Too late ripened By a desperate sun That struggles through sea-mist.
[Pg 120] The boughs of the trees Are twisted By many bafflings; Twisted are The small-leafed boughs.
But the shadow of them Is not the shadow of the mast head Nor of the torn sails.
Hermes, Hermes, The great sea foamed, Gnashed its teeth about me; But you have waited, Where sea-grass tangles with Shore-grass.
H. D.

[Pg 121]

PRIAPUS Keeper-of-Orchards
I saw the first pear As it fell. The honey-seeking, golden-banded, The yellow swarm Was not more fleet than I, (Spare us from loveliness!) And I fell prostrate, Crying, Thou hast flayed us with thy blossoms; Spare us the beauty Of fruit-trees!
The honey-seeking Paused not, The air thundered their song, And I alone was prostrate.
O rough-hewn God of the orchard, I bring thee an offering; Do thou, alone unbeautiful (Son of the god), Spare us from loveliness.
[Pg 122] The fallen hazel-nuts, Stripped late of their green sheaths, The grapes, red-purple, Their berries Dripping with wine, Pomegranates already broken, And shrunken fig, And quinces untouched, I bring thee as offering.
H. D.
EPIGRAM (After the Greek)
The golden one is gone from the banquets; She, beloved of Atimetus, The swallow, the bright Homonoea: Gone the dear chatterer; Death succeeds Atimetus.
H. D., "Imagiste."

[Pg 123]



London, December 10, 1912

The state of things here in London is, as I see it, as follows:

I find Mr. Yeats the only poet worthy of serious study. Mr. Yeats' work is already a recognized classic and is part of the required reading in the Sorbonne. There is no need of proclaiming him to the American public.

As to his English contemporaries, they are food, sometimes very good food, for anthologies. There are a number of men who have written a poem, or several poems, worth knowing and remembering, but they do not much concern the young artist studying the art of poetry.

The important work of the last twenty-five years has been done in Paris. This work is little likely to gain a large audience in either America or England, because of its tone and content. There has been no "man with a message," but the work has been excellent and the method worthy of our emulation. No other body of poets having so little necessity to speak could have spoken so well as these modern Parisians and Flemings.

There has been some imitation here of their manner and content. Any donkey can imitate a man's manner. There has been little serious consideration of their method. It requires an artist to analyze and apply a method.

[Pg 124]

Among the men of thirty here, Padraic Colum is the one whom we call most certainly a poet, albeit he has written very little verse—and but a small part of that is worthy of notice. He is fairly unconscious of such words as "aesthetics," "technique" and "method." He is at his best in Garadh, a translation from the Gaelic, beginning:

O woman, shapely as a swan, On your account I shall not die. The men you've slain—a trivial clan— Were less than I:

and in A Drover. He is bad whenever he shows a trace of reading. I quote the opening of A Drover, as I think it shows "all Colum" better than any passage he has written. I think no English-speaking writer now living has had the luck to get so much of himself into twelve lines.

To Meath of the pastures, From wet hills by the sea, Through Leitrim and Longford Go my cattle and me.
I hear in the darkness Their slipping and breathing. I name them the bye-ways They're to pass without heeding.
Then the wet, winding roads, Brown bogs with black water; And my thoughts on white ships And the King o' Spain's daughter.

[Pg 125]

I would rather talk about poetry with Ford Madox Hueffer than with any man in London. Mr. Hueffer's beliefs about the art may be best explained by saying that they are in diametric opposition to those of Mr. Yeats.

Mr. Yeats has been subjective; believes in the glamour and associations which hang near the words. "Works of art beget works of art." He has much in common with the French symbolists. Mr. Hueffer believes in an exact rendering of things. He would strip words of all "association" for the sake of getting a precise meaning. He professes to prefer prose to verse. You would find his origins in Gautier or in Flaubert. He is objective. This school tends to lapse into description. The other tends to lapse into sentiment.

Mr. Yeats' method is, to my way of thinking, very dangerous, for although he is the greatest of living poets who use English, and though he has sung some of the moods of life immortally, his art has not broadened much in scope during the past decade. His gifts to English art are mostly negative; i. e., he has stripped English poetry of many of its faults. His "followers" have come to nothing. Neither Synge, Lady Gregory nor Colum can be called his followers, though he had much to do with bringing them forth, yet nearly every man who writes English verse seriously is in some way indebted to him.

[Pg 126]

Mr. Hueffer has rarely "come off." His touch is so light and his attitude so easy that there seems little likelihood of his ever being taken seriously by anyone save a few specialists and a few of his intimates. His last leaflet, High Germany, contains, however, three poems from which one may learn his quality. They are not Victorian. I do not expect many people to understand why I praise them. They are The Starling, In the Little Old Market-Place and To All the Dead.

The youngest school here that has the nerve to call itself a school is that of the Imagistes. To belong to a school does not in the least mean that one writes poetry to a theory. One writes poetry when, where, because, and as one feels like writing it. A school exists when two or three young men agree, more or less, to call certain things good; when they prefer such of their verses as have certain qualities to such of their verses as do not have them.

Space forbids me to set forth the program of the Imagistes at length, but one of their watchwords is Precision, and they are in opposition to the numerous and unassembled writers who busy themselves with dull and interminable effusions, and who seem to think that a man can write a good long poem before he learns to write a good short one, or even before he learns to produce a good single line.

Among the very young men, there seems to be a gleam of hope in the work of Richard Aldington, but it is too early to make predictions.

[Pg 127]

There are a number of men whose names are too well known for it to seem necessary to tell them over. America has already found their work in volumes or anthologies. Hardy, Kipling, Maurice Hewlett, Binyon, Robert Bridges, Sturge Moore, Henry Newbolt, McKail, Masefield, who has had the latest cry; Abercrombie, with passionate defenders, and Rupert Brooke, recently come down from Cambridge.

There are men also, who are little known to the general public, but who contribute liberally to the "charm" or the "atmosphere" of London: Wilfred Scawen Blunt, the grandest of old men, the last of the great Victorians; great by reason of his double sonnet, beginning—

He who has once been happy is for aye Out of destruction's reach;

Ernest Rhys, weary with much editing and hack work, to whom we owe gold digged in Wales, translations, transcripts, and poems of his own, among them the fine one to Dagonet; Victor Plarr, one of the "old" Rhymers' Club, a friend of Dowson and of Lionel Johnson. His volume, In The Dorian Mood, has been half forgotten, but not his verses Epitaphium Citharistriae. One would also name the Provost of Oriel, not for original work, but for his very beautiful translations from Dante.

In fact one might name nearly a hundred writers who have given pleasure with this or that matter in rhyme. But it is one thing to take pleasure in a man's work and another to respect him as a great artist.

Ezra Pound

[Pg 128]


The Lyric Year, Mr. Kennerley's new annual, contains among its hundred contributions nearly a score of live poems, among which a few excite the kind of keen emotion which only art of real distinction can arouse.

Among the live poems the present reviewer would count none of the prize-winners, not even Mr. Sterling's, the best of the three, whose rather stiff formalities in praise of Browning are, however, lit now and then by shining lines, as—

Drew as a bubble from old infamies.... The shy and many-colored soul of man.

The other two prize-poems must have been measured by some academic foot-rule dug up from the eighteenth century. Orrick Johns' Second Avenue is a Grays Elegy essay of prosy moralizing, without a finely poetic line in it, or any originality of meaning or cadence. And the second prize went to an ode still more hopelessly academic. Indeed, To a Thrush, by Thomas Augustine Daly, is one of the most stilted poems in the volume, a far-away echo of echoes, full of the approved "poetic" words—throstle, pregnant, vernal, cerulean, teen, chrysmal, even paraclete—and quite guiltless of inspiration.

[Pg 129]

But one need not linger with these. As we face the other way one poem outranks the rest and ennobles the book. This is The Renascence, said to be by Edna St. Vincent Millay, who, according to the editor, is only twenty years old. This poem is the daring flight of a wide-winged imagination, and the art of it, though not faultless, is strong enough to carry us through keen emotions of joy and agony to a climax of spiritual serenity. Though marred by the last twelve lines, which should be struck out for stating the thesis too explicitly, this poem arouses high hopes of its youthful author.

Among the other live poems—trees, saplings or flowers—are various species. Kisa-Gotami, by Arthur Davison Ficke, tells its familiar story of the Buddha in stately cadences which sustain the beauty of the tale. Jetsam, a "Titanic" elegy by Herman Montagu Donner, carries the dread and dangerous subject without violating its terrors and sanctities with false sentiment or light rhythm. Ridgeley Torrence's Ritual for a Funeral is less sure of its ground, sometimes escaping into vapors, but on the whole noble in feeling and flute-like in cadence. Mrs. Conkling's bird ode has now and then an airy delicacy, and Edith Wyatt's City Swallow gives the emotion of flight above the roofs and smoke of a modern town.

[Pg 130]

Of the shorter poems who could ignore Harry Kemp's noble lyric dialogue, I Sing the Battle; The Forgotten Soul by Margaret Widdemer, Selma, by Willard H. Wright; Comrades by Fannie Stearns Davis, or Nicholas Vachel Lindsay's tribute to O. Henry, a more vital elegy than Mr. Sterling's? These are all simple and sincere—straight modern talk which rises into song without the aid of worn-out phrases. Paternity, by William Rose Benét, To My Vagrant Love, by Elouise Briton, and Dedication, by Pauline Florence Brower, are delicate expressions of intimate emotion; and Martin, by Joyce Kilmer, touches with grace a lighter subject.

To have gathered such as these together is perhaps enough, but more may be reasonably demanded. As a whole the collection, like the prizes, is too academic; Georgian and Victorian standards are too much in evidence. The ambition of The Lyric Year is to be "an annual Salon of American poetry;" to this end poets and their publishers are invited to contribute gratis the best poems of the year, without hope of reward other than the three prizes. That so many responded to the call, freely submitting their works to anonymous judges, shows how eager is the hitherto unfriended American muse to seize any helping hand.

However, if this annual is to speak with any authority as a Salon, it should take a few lessons from art exhibitions. Mr. Earle's position as donor, editor and judge, is as if Mr. Carnegie should act as hanging committee at the Pittsburg show, and help select the prize-winners. And Messrs. Earle, Braithwaite and Wheeler, this year's jury of awards, are not, even though all have written verse, poets of recognized distinction in the sense that Messrs. Chase, Alexander, Hassam, Duveneck, and other jurymen in our various American Salons, are distinguished painters.

[Pg 131]

In these facts lie the present weaknesses of The Lyric Year. However, the remedy for them is easy and may be applied in future issues. Meantime the venture is to be welcomed; at last someone, somewhere, is trying to do something for the encouragement of the art in America. Poetry, which is embarked in the same adventure, rejoices in companionship.

H. M.


Already many books of verses come to us, of which a few are poetry. Sometimes the poetry is an aspiration rather than an achievement; but in spite of crude materials and imperfect artistry one may feel the beat of wings and hear the song. Again one searches in vain for the magic touch, even though the author has interesting things to say in creditable and more or less persuasive rhymed eloquence.

Of recent arrivals Mr. John Hall Wheelock has the most searching vision and appealing voice. In The Human Fantasy (Sherman, French & Co.) his subject is New York, typified in the pathetic little love-affair of two young starvelings, which takes its course through a stirring, exacting milieu to a renunciation that leaves the essential sanctities intact. The poet looks through the slang and shoddy of the lovers, and the dust and glare of the city, to the divine power of passion in both. In The Beloved Adventure the emotion is less poignant; or, rather, the poet has included many indifferent pieces which obscure the quality of finer lyrics. More rigorous technique [Pg 132] and resolute use of the waste-basket would make more apparent the fact that we have here a true poet, one with a singing voice, and a heart deeply moved by essential spiritual beauty in the common manifestations of human character. At his best he writes with immense concentration and unflagging vigor; and his hearty young appetite for life in all its manifestations helps him to transmute the repellant discords of the modern town into harmony. The fantasy of Love in a City is a "true thing" and a vital.

Mr. Hermann Hagedorn is also a true poet, capable of lyric rapture, but sometimes, when he seems least aware, his muse escapes him. The Infidel, the initial poem of his Poems and Ballads (Houghton Mifflin Co.), recalls his Woman of Corinth, and others in this book remind one of this and of his Harvard class poem, The Troop of the Guard, in that the words do not, like colored sands, dance inevitably into the absolute shape determined by the wizardry of sound. He is still somewhat hampered by the New England manner, a trend toward an external formalism not dependent on interior necessity. This influence makes for academic and lifeless work, and it must be deeply rooted since it casts its chill also over the Boston school of painters.

But now and then Mr. Hagedorn frees himself; perhaps in the end he may escape altogether. In such poems as Song, Doors, Broadway, Discovery, The Wood-Gatherer, The Crier in the Night and A Chant on the Terrible Highway, we feel that he begins to speak for himself, to sing with his own voice. Such poems are a challenging note that should arrest the attention of all seekers after sincere poetic expression.

[Pg 133]

Mr. Percy MacKaye, in Uriel and Other Poems (Houghton Mifflin Co.), shows also the Boston influence, but perhaps it is difficult to escape the academic note in such poems for occasions as these. With fluent eloquence and a ready command of verse forms he celebrates dead poets, addresses noted living persons, and contributes to a number of ceremonial observances. The poems in which he is most freely lyric are perhaps In the Bohemian Redwoods and To the Fire-Bringer, the shorter of his elegies in honor of Moody, his friend.

In two dramatic poems, The Tragedy of Etarre, by Rhys Carpenter (Sturgis & Walton Co.), and Gabriel, a Pageant of Vigil, by Mrs. Isabelle Howe Fiske (Mosher), the academic note is confidently insisted on. The former shows the more promise of ultimate freedom. It is an Arthurian venture of which the prologue is the strongest part. In firm-knit iambics Mr. Carpenter strikes out many effective lines and telling situations. Indeed, they almost prompt the profane suggestion that, simplified and compressed, they might yield a psychological libretto for some "advanced" composer.

Mrs. Fiske's venture is toward heaven itself; but her numerous archangels are of the earth earthy.

[Pg 134]

In The Unconquered Air and Other Poems (Houghton Mifflin Co.), Mrs. Florence Earle Coates shows not inspiration but wide and humane sympathies. Her verse is typical of much which has enough popular appeal and educative value to be printed extensively in the magazines; verse in which subjects of modern interest and human sentiment are expressed in the kind of rhymed eloquence which passes for poetry with the great majority.

These poets may claim the justification of illustrious precedent. The typical poem of this class in America, the most famous verse rhapsody which stops short of lyric rapture, is Lowell's Commemoration Ode.


Our poets this month play divers instruments. The audience may listen to H. D.'s flute, the 'cello of Mr. Rhys, the big bass drum of Mr. Lindsay, and so on through the orchestra, fitting each poet to his special strain. Some of these performers are well known, others perhaps will be.

Mr. Ernest Rhys is of Welsh descent. In 1888-9 he lectured in America, and afterward returned to London, where he has published A London Rose, Arthurian plays and poems, and Welsh ballads, and edited Everyman's Library.

Mr. Madison Cawein, the well-known Kentucky poet resident in Louisville, scarcely needs an introductory word. His is landscape poetry chiefly, but sometimes, as in Wordsworth, figures blend with the scene and become a part of nature. A volume of his own selections from his various books has recently been published by The MacMillan Company.

[Pg 135]

Mr. Nicholas Vachel Lindsay is the vagabond poet who loves to tramp through untravelled country districts without a cent in his pocket, exchanging "rhymes for bread" at farmers' hearths. The magazines have published engaging articles by him, but in verse he has been usually his own publisher as yet.

"H. D., Imagiste," is an American lady resident abroad, whose identity is unknown to the editor. Her sketches from the Greek are not offered as exact translations, or as in any sense finalities, but as experiments in delicate and elusive cadences, which attain sometimes a haunting beauty.

Mr. Kendall Banning is an editor and writer of songs. "The Love Songs of the Open Road," with music by Lena Branscord, will soon be published by Arthur Schmidt of Boston.

Mrs. Anita Fitch of New York has contributed poems to various magazines.

The February number of Poetry will be devoted to the work of two poets, Messrs. Arthur Davison Ficke and Witter Bynner.

[Pg 136]


  The Lyric Year. Mitchell Kennerley. Poems and Ballads, by Hermann Hagedorn. Houghton Mifflin Co. Shadows of the Flowers, by T. B. Aldrich. Houghton Mifflin Co. Poems and Plays, by William Vaughn Moody. Houghton Mifflin Co. Nimrod, by Francis Rolt-Wheeler. Lothrop, Lee and Shepard. The Shadow Garden and Other Plays, by Madison Cawein. G. P. Putman's Sons. Via Lucis, by Alice Harper. M. E. Church South, Nashville, Tenn. Songs of Courage and Other Poems, by Bertha F. Gordon. The Baker & Taylor Co. Narrative Lyrics, by Edward Lucas White. G. P. Putnam's Sons. The Dance of Dinwiddie, by Marshall Moreton. Stewart & Kidd Co. The Three Visions and Other Poems, by John A. Johnson. Stewart & Kidd Co. Hands Across The Equator, by Alfred Ernest Keet. Privately printed. Songs Under Open Skies, by M. Jay Flannery. Stewart & Kidd Co. Denys Of Auxerre, by James Barton. Christophers, London. Songs in Many Moods, by Charles Washburn Nichols. L. H. Blackmer Press. The Lord's Prayer. A Sonnet Sequence by Francis Howard Williams. George W. Jacobs & Co. The Buccaneers, by Don C. Seitz. Harper & Bros. The Tale of a Round-House, by John Masefield. The MacMillan Co. XXXIII Love Sonnets, by Florence Brooks. John Marone. The Poems of Ida Ahlborn Weeks. Published By Her Friends, Sabula, Iowa. The Poems of LeRoy Titus Weeks. Published by the author. Ripostes, by Ezra Pound. Stephen Swift. The Spinning Woman of the Sky, by Alice Corbin. The Ralph Fletcher Seymour Co. The Irish Poems of Alfred Perceval Graves. Maunsel & Co. Welsh Poetry Old and New, in English Verse, by Alfred Perceval Graves. Longmans, Green & Co.

[Pg 137]

POETRY--A Magazine of Verse Vol. I
No. 5
FEBRUARY, 1913  




The autumn dusk, not yearly but eternal, Is haunted by thy voice. Who turns his way far from the valleys vernal And by dark choice Disturbs those heights which from the low-lying land Rise sheerly toward the heavens, with thee may stand And hear thy thunders down the mountains strown. But none save him who shares thy prophet-sight Shall thence behold what cosmic dawning-light Met thy soul's own.
[Pg 138] Master of music! unmelodious singing Must build thy praises now. Master of vision! vainly come we, bringing Words to endow Thy silence,—where, beyond our clouded powers, The sun-shot glory of resplendent hours Invests thee of the Dionysiac flame. Yet undissuaded come we, here to make Not thine enrichment but our own who wake Thy echoing fame.
Not o'er thy dust we brood,—we who have never Looked in thy living eyes. Nor wintry blossom shall we come to sever Where thy grave lies. Let witlings dream, with shallow pride elate, That they approach the presence of the great When at the spot of birth or death they stand. But hearts in whom thy heart lives, though they be By oceans sundered, walk the night with thee In alien land.
For them, grief speaks not with the tidings spoken That thou art of the dead. No lamp extinguished when the bowl is broken, No music fled When the lute crumbles, art thou nor shalt be; But as a great wave, lifted on the sea, Surges triumphant toward the sleeping shore, Thou fallest, in splendor of irradiant rain, To sweep resurgent all the ocean plain Forevermore.
[Pg 139] V
The seas of earth with flood tides filled thy bosom; The sea-winds to thy voice Lent power; the Grecian with the English blossom Twined, to rejoice Upon thy brow in chaplets of new bloom; And over thee the Celtic mists of doom Hovered to give their magics to thy hand; And past the moon, where Music dwells alone, She woke, and loved, and left her starry zone At thy command.
For thee spake Beauty from the shadowy waters; For thee Earth garlanded With loveliness and light her mortal daughters; Toward thee was sped The arrow of swift longing, keen delight, Wonder that pierces, cruel needs that smite, Madness and melody and hope and tears. And these with lights and loveliness illume Thy pages, where rich Summer's faint perfume Outlasts the years.
[Pg 140] Outlasts, too well! For of the hearts that know thee Few know or dare to stand On thy keen chilling heights; but where below thee Thy lavish hand Has scattered brilliant jewels of summer song And flowers of passionate speech, there grope the throng Crying—"Behold! this bauble, this is he!" And of their love or hate, the foolish wars Echo up faintly where amid lone stars Thy soul may be.
But some, who find in thee a word exceeding Even thy power of speech— To whom each song,—like an oak-leaf crimson, bleeding, Fallen,—can teach Tidings of that high forest whence it came Where the wooded mountain-slope in one vast flame Burns as the Autumn kindles on its quest— These rapt diviners gather close to thee:— Whom now the Winter holds in dateless fee Sealèd of rest.
Strings never touched before,—strange accents chanting,— Strange quivering lambent words,— A far exalted hope serene or panting Mastering the chords,— A sweetness fierce and tragic,—these were thine, O singing lover of dark Proserpine! O spirit who lit the Maenad hills with song! O Augur bearing aloft thy torch divine, Whose flickering lights bewilder as they shine Down on the throng.
[Pg 141] X
Not thy deep glooms, but thine exceeding glory Maketh men blind to thee. For them thou hast no evening fireside story. But to be free— But to arise, spurning all bonds that fold The spirit of man in fetters forged of old— This was the mighty trend of thy desire; Shattering the Gods, teaching the heart to mould No longer idols, but aloft to hold The soul's own fire.
Yea, thou didst burst the final gates of capture; And thy strong heart has passed From youth, half-blinded by its golden rapture, Into the vast Desolate bleakness of life's iron spaces; And there found solace, not in faiths, or faces, Or aught that must endure Time's harsh control. In the wilderness, alone, when skies were cloven, Thou hast thy garment and thy refuge woven From thine own soul.
[Pg 142] The faiths and forms of yesteryear are waning, Dropping, like leaves. Through the wood sweeps a great wind of complaining As Time bereaves Pitiful hearts of all that they thought holy. The icy stars look down on melancholy Shelterless creatures of a pillaged day: A day of disillusionment and terror, A day that yields no solace for the error It takes away.
Thee with no solace, but with bolder passion The bitter day endowed. As battling seas from the frail swimmer fashion At last the proud Indomitable master of their tides, Who with exultant power splendidly rides The terrible summit of each whelming wave,— So didst thou reap, from fields of wreckage, gain; Harvesting the wild fruit of the bitter main, Strength that shall save.
Here where old barks upon new headlands shatter, And worlds seem torn apart, Amid the creeds now vain to shield or flatter The mortal heart, Where the wild welter of strange knowledge won From grave and engine and the chemic sun Subdues the age to faith in dust and gold: The bardic laurel thou hast dowered with youth, In living witness of the spirit's truth, Like prophets old.
[Pg 143] XV
Thee shall the future time with joy inherit. Hast thou not sung and said: "Save its own light, none leads the mortal spirit, None ever led"? Time shall bring many, even as thy steps have trod, Where the soul speaks authentically of God, Sustained by glories strange and strong and new. Yet these most Orphic mysteries of thy heart Only to kindred can thy speech impart; And they are few.
Few men shall love thee, whom fierce powers have lifted High beyond meed of praise. But as some bark whose seeking sail has drifted Through storm of days, We hail thee, bearing back thy golden flowers Gathered beyond the Western Isles, in bowers That had not seen, till thine, a vessel's wake. And looking on thee from our land-built towers Know that such sea-dawn never can be ours As thou sawest break.
[Pg 144] Now sailest thou dim-lighted, lonelier water. By shores of bitter seas Low is thy speech with Ceres' ghostly daughter, Whose twined lilies Are not more pale than thou, O bard most sweet, Most bitter;—for whose brow sedge-crowns were mete And crowns of splendid holly green and red; Who passest from the dust of careless feet To lands where sunrise thou hast sought shall greet Thy holy head.
Thou hast followed after him whose hopes were greatest,— That meteor-soul divine; Near whom divine we hail thee: thou the latest Of that bright line Of flame-lipped masters of the spell of song, Enduring in succession proud and long, The banner-bearers in triumphant wars: Latest; and first of that bright line to be, For whom thou also, flame-lipped, spirit-free, Art of the stars.
You shall remember dimly, Through mists of far-away, Her whom, our lips set grimly, We carried forth today.
[Pg 145] But when, in days hereafter, Unfolding time shall bring Knowledge of love and laughter And trust and triumphing,—
Then from some face the fairest, From some most joyous breast, Garner what there is rarest And happiest and best,—
The youth, the light the rapture Of eager April grace,— And in that sweetness, capture Your mother's far-off face.
And all the mists shall perish That have between you moved. You shall see her you cherish; And love, as we have loved.
She limps with halting painful pace, Stops, wavers, and creeps on again; Peers up with dim and questioning face Void of desire or doubt or pain.
Her cheeks hang gray in waxen folds Wherein there stirs no blood at all. A hand like bundled cornstalks holds The tatters of a faded shawl.
[Pg 146] Where was a breast, sunk bones she clasps; A knot jerks where were woman-hips; A ropy throat sends writhing gasps Up to the tight line of her lips.
Here strong the city's pomp is poured ... She stands, unhuman, bleak, aghast: An empty temple of the Lord From which the jocund Lord has passed.
He has builded him another house, Whenceforth his flame, renewed and bright, Shines stark upon these weathered brows Abandoned to the final night.
Gone are the three, those sisters rare With wonder-lips and eyes ashine. One was wise and one was fair, And one was mine.
Ye mourners, weave for the sleeping hair Of only two your ivy vine. For one was wise and one was fair, But one was mine.

[Pg 147]

In halls of sleep you wandered by, This time so indistinguishably I cannot remember aught of it, Save that I know last night we met. I know it by the cloudy thrill That in my heart is quivering still; And sense of loveliness forgot Teases my fancy out of thought. Though with the night the vision wanes Its haunting presence still may last— As odour of flowers faint remains In halls where late a queen has passed.
Oh, let me take your lily hand, And where the secret star-beams shine Draw near, to see and understand Pierrot and Columbine.
Around the fountains, in the dew, Where afternoon melts into night, With gracious mirth their gracious crew Entice the shy birds of delight.
[Pg 148] Of motley dress and maskèd face, Of sparkling unrevealing eyes, They track in gentle aimless chase The moment as it flies.
Their delicate beribboned rout, Gallant and fair, of light intent, Weaves through the shadows in and out With infinite artful merriment.
Dear Lady of the lily hand, Do then our stars so clearly shine That we, who do not understand, May mock Pierrot and Columbine?
Beyond this garden-grove I see The wise, the noble and the brave In ultimate futility Go down into the grave.
And all they dreamed and all they sought, Crumbled and ashen grown, departs; And is as if they had not wrought These works with blood from out their hearts.
The nations fall, the faiths decay, The great philosophies go by,— And life lies bare, some bitter day, A charnel that affronts the sky.
[Pg 149] The wise, the noble and the brave,— They saw and solved, as we must see And solve, the universal grave, The ultimate futility.
Look, where beside the garden-pool A Venus rises in the grove, More suave, more debonair, more cool Than ever burned with Paphian love.
'Twas here the delicate ribboned rout Of gallants and the fair ones went Among the shadows in and out With infinite artful merriment.
Then let me take your lily hand, And let us tread, where starbeams shine, A dance; and be, and understand Pierrot and Columbine.
Arthur Davison Ficke

[Pg 150]




When a wandering Italian Yesterday at noon Played upon his hurdy-gurdy Suddenly a tune, There was magic in my ear-drums: Like a baby's cup and spoon Tinkling time for many sleigh-bells, Many no-school, rainy-day-bells, Cow-bells, frog-bells, run-away-bells, Mingling with an ocean medley As of elemental people More emotional than wordy,— Mermaids laughing off their tantrums, Mermen singing loud and sturdy,— Silver scales and fluting shells, Popping weeds and gurgles deadly, Coral chime from coral steeple, Intermittent deep-sea bells Ringing over floating knuckles, Buried gold and swords and buckles, And a thousand bubbling chuckles, [Pg 151] Yesterday at noon,— Such a melody as star-fish, And all fish that really are fish, In a gay, remote battalion Play at midnight to the moon!
Could any playmate on our planet, Hid in a house of earth's own granite, Be so devoid of primal fire That a wind from this wild crated lyre Should find no spark and fan it? Would any lady half in tears, Whose fashion, on a recent day Over the sea, had been to pay Vociferous gondoliers, Beg that the din be sent away And ask a gentleman, gravely treading As down the aisle at his own wedding, To toss the foreigner a quarter Bribing him to leave the street; That motor-horns and servants' feet Familiar might resume, and sweet To her offended ears, The money-music of her peers!
[Pg 152] Apollo listened, took the quarter With his hat off to the buyer, Shrugged his shoulder small and sturdy, Led away his hurdy-gurdy Street by street, then turned at last Toward a likelier piece of earth Where a stream of chatter passed, Yesterday at noon; By a school he stopped and played Suddenly a tune.... What a melody he made! Made in all those eager faces, Feet and hands and fingers! How they gathered, how they stayed With smiles and quick grimaces, Little man and little maid!— How they took their places, Hopping, skipping, unafraid, Darting, rioting about, Squealing, laughing, shouting out! How, beyond a single doubt, In my own feet sprang the ardour (Even now the motion lingers) To be joining in their paces! Round and round the handle went,— Round their hearts went harder;— Apollo urged the happy rout And beamed, ten times as well content With every son and daughter As though their little hands had lent The gentleman his quarter.— (You would not guess—nor I deny— [Pg 153] That that same gentleman was I!) No gentleman may watch a god With proper happiness therefrom; So street by street again I trod The way that we had come. He had not seen me following And yet I think he knew; For still, the less I heard of it, The more his music grew: As if he made a bird of it To sing the distance through.... And, O Apollo, how I thrilled, You liquid-eyed rapscallion, With every twig and twist of Spring, Because your music rose and filled Each leafy vein with dew,— With melody of olden sleigh-bells, Over-the-sea-and-far-away-bells, And the heart of an Italian, And the tinkling cup and spoon,— Such a melody as star-fish, And all fish that really are fish, In a gay remote battalion Play at midnight to the moon!
Oh I longed, when I went in the woods today, To see the fauns come out and play, [Pg 154] To see a satyr try to seize A dryad's waist—and bark his knees, To see a river-nymph waylay And shock him with a dash of spray!— And I teased, like a child, by brooks and trees: "Come back again! We need you! Please! Come back and teach us how to play!" But nowhere in the woods were they.
I found, when I went in the town today, A thousand people on their way To offices and factories— And never a single soul at ease; And how could I help but sigh and say: "What can it profit them, how can it pay To strain the eye with rivalries Until the dark is all it sees?— Or to manage, more than others may, To store the wasted gain away?"
[Pg 155] But one of the crowd looked up today, With pointed brows. I heard him say: "Out of the meadows and rivers and trees We fauns and many companies Of nymphs have come. And we are these, These people, each upon his way, Looking for work, working for pay— And paying all our energies To earn true love ... For, seeming gay, "Once we were sad," I heard him say.
Neighbors are not neighborly Who close the windows tight,— Nor those who fix a peeping eye For finding things not right.
Let me have faith, is what I pray, And let my faith be strong!— But who am I, is what I say, To think my neighbor wrong?
And though my neighbor may deny That faith could be so slight, May call me wrong, yet who am I To think my neighbor right?
Perhaps we wisely by and by May learn it of each other, That he is right and so am I— And save a lot of bother.

[Pg 156]

I look at the long low hills of golden brown With their little wooded canyons And at the haze hanging its beauty in the air— And I am caught and held, as a ball is caught and held by a player Who leaps for it in the field. And as the heart in the breast of the player beats toward the ball, And as the heart beats in the breast of him who shouts toward the player, So my heart beats toward the hills that are playing ball with the sun, That leap to catch the sun And to throw it to other hills— Or to me!
Grieve not for the invisible, transported brow On which like leaves the dark hair grew, Nor for the lips of laughter that are now Laughing inaudibly in sun and dew, Nor for those limbs that, fallen low And seeming faint and slow, [Pg 157] Shall yet pursue More ways of swiftness than the swallow dips Among ... and find more winds than ever blew The straining sails of unimpeded ships! Mourn not!—yield only happy tears To deeper beauty than appears!
By seven vineyards on one hill We walked. The native wine In clusters grew beside us two, For your lips and for mine,
When, "Hark!" you said,—"Was that a bell Or a bubbling spring we heard?" But I was wise and closed my eyes And listened to a bird;
For as summer leaves are bent and shake With singers passing through, So moves in me continually The wingèd breath of you.
You tasted from a single vine And took from that your fill— But I inclined to every kind, All seven on one hill.

[Pg 158]

I had not till today been sure, But now I know: Dead men and women come and go Under the pure Sequestering snow.
And under the autumnal fern And carmine bush, Under the shadow of a thrush, They move and learn; And in the rush
Of all the mountain-brooks that wake With upward fling To brush and break the loosening cling Of ice, they shake The air with Spring!
I had not till today been sure, But now I know: Dead youths and maidens come and go Below the lure And undertow
[Pg 159] Of cities, under every street Of empty stress, Or heart of an adulteress: Each loud retreat Of lovelessness.
For only by the stir we make In passing near Are we confused, and cannot hear The ways they take Certain and clear.
Today I happened in a place Where all around Was silence; until, underground, I heard a pace, A happy sound.
And people whom I there could see Tenderly smiled, While under a wood of silent, wild Antiquity Wandered a child,
Leading his mother by the hand, Happy and slow, Teaching his mother where to go Under the snow. Not even now I understand— I only know.
Witter Bynner

[Pg 160]


The Story of a Round House and other Poems,

by John Masefield (Macmillan)


Not long ago I chanced to see upon a well-known page, reflective and sincere, these words: "The invisible root out of which the poetry deepest in and dearest to humanity grows is Friendship."

A recent volume may well serve as a distinguished illustration of the saying's truth. Few persons, I think, will read The Story of a Round House and other Poems without a sense that the invisible root of its deep poetry is that fine power which Whitman called Friendship, the genius of sympathetic imagination.

This is the force that knits the sinews of the chief, the life-size figure of the book. Dauber is the tale of a man and his work. It is the story of an artist in the making. The heroic struggles of an English farmer's son of twenty-one to become a painter of ships and the ocean, form the drama of the poem. The scene is a voyage around the Horn, the ship-board and round-house of a clipper where Dauber spends cruel, grinding months of effort to become an able seaman on the road of his further purpose—

Of beating thought into the perfect line.

[Pg 161]

His fall from the yard-arm toward the close of the conquered horrors of his testing voyage; the catastrophe of his death after

He had emerged out of the iron time And knew that he could compass his life's scheme—

these make the end of the tragedy.

Tragedy? Yes. But a tragedy of the same temper as that of the great Dane, where the pursuit of a mortal soul's intention is more, far more, than his mortality. Unseen forever by the world, part of its unheard melodies, are all the lines and colors of the Dauber's dreaming. At Elsinore rules Fortinbras, the foe: the fight is lost; the fighter has been slain. These are great issues, hard, unjust and wrong. But the greatest issue of all is that men should be made of the stuff of magnificence. You close the poem, you listen to the last speech of its deep sea-music, thinking: Here is death, the real death we all must die; here is futility, and who knows what we all are here for? But here is glory.

Only less powerful than the impression of the strain of Dauber's endeavor, is the impression of its loneliness. The sneers of the reefers, their practical jokes, the dulness, the arrogance, the smugness and endless misunderstanding, the meanness of man on the apprentice journey, has a keener tooth than the storm-wind.

[Pg 162]

The verities of Dauber are built out of veracities. The reader must face the hardship of labor at sea. He must face the squalors, the miseries. If he cannot find poetry in a presentment of the cruel, dizzying reality of a sailor's night on a yard-arm in the icy gale off Cape Horn, then he will not perhaps feel in the poem the uncompromising raciness inherent in romances that are true. For the whole manner of this sea-piece is that of bold, free-hand drawing of things as they are. Its final event presents a genuinely epic subject from our contemporary history—the catastrophic character of common labor, and one of its multitudinous fatalities.

Epic rather than lyric, the verse of Dauber has an admirable and refreshing variety in its movement. It speaks the high, wild cry of an eagle:

—the eagle's song Screamed from her desolate screes and splintered scars.

It speaks thick-crowding discomforts on the mast with a slapping, frozen sail:

His sheath-knife flashed, His numb hand hacked with it to clear the strips; The flying ice was salt upon his lips. The ice was caking on his oil-skins; cold Struck to his marrow, beat upon him strong, The chill palsied his blood, it made him old; The frosty scatter of death was being flung.

Some of the lines, such as—

The blackness crunched all memory of the sun—

have the hard ring, the thick-packed consonantal beauty of stirring Greek.

[Pg 163]

Dauber will have value to American poetry-readers if only from its mere power of revealing that poetry is not alone the mellow lin-lan-lone of evening bells, though it be that also, but may have music of innumerable kinds.

Biography, the next poem in the book, sings with a different voice and sees from a different point of view, the difficulty of re-creating in expression—here expression through words, not through colors—

This many-pictured world of many passions.

Biography, too, rises from the invisible root of friendship and bears with wonderfully vivid arborescence an appreciative tale of the fine contribution of different companionships to a life.

Among the two-score shorter lyrics of the collection are songs of the sea or of the country-side; chants of coast-town bells and ports, marine ballads, and love-poems. This is, however, the loosest entitling of their kinds; nothing but the work itself in its entirety, can ever tell the actual subject of any true poem. Of these kinds it is not to the marine ballads that one turns back again and again, not to the story of "Spanish Waters" nor to any of the jingling-gold, the clinking-glass, the treasure-wreck verses of the book. Their tunes are spirited, but not a tenth as spirited as those of "The Pirates of Penzance." Indeed, to the conventionally villainous among fictive sea-faring persons of song, Gilbert and Sullivan seem to have done something that cannot now ever be undone.

[Pg 164]

The poems in the volume one does turn back to again and again are those with the great singing tones, that pour forth with originality, with inexpressible free grace and native power. Again and again you will read A Creed, C. L. M., Born for Nought Else, Roadways, Truth, The Wild Duck, Her Heart, and—

But at the falling of the tide The golden birds still sing and gleam. The Atlanteans have not died, Immortal things still give us dream.
The dream that fires man's heart to make, To build, to do, to sing or say A beauty Death can never take, An Adam from the crumbled clay.

Wonderful, wonderful it is that in the hearing of our own generation, one great voice after another has called and sung to the world from the midst of the sea-mists of England. From the poetry of Swinburne, of Rudyard Kipling, of John Masefield immortal things still give us dream.

Among the poems of this new book, more than one appear as incarnations of the beauty Death can never take. Of these, perhaps, none is more characteristic of the poet, nor will any more fittingly evince his volume's quality than Truth.

Man with his burning soul Has but an hour of breath To build a ship of Truth In which his soul may sail, Sail on the sea of death. For death takes toll Of beauty, courage, youth, Of all but Truth.
[Pg 165] Life's city ways are dark, Men mutter by, the wells Of the great waters moan. O death, O sea, O tide, The waters moan like bells. No light, no mark, The soul goes out alone On seas unknown.
Stripped of all purple robes, Stripped of all golden lies, I will not be afraid. Truth will preserve through death; Perhaps the stars will rise, The stars like globes. The ship my striving made May see night fade.
Edith Wyatt

Présences, par P. J. Jouve: Georges Crès, Paris.

I take pleasure in welcoming, in Monsieur Jouve, a contemporary. He writes the new jargon and I have not the slightest doubt that he is a poet.

Whatever may be said against automobiles and aeroplanes and the modernist way of speaking of them, and however much one may argue that this new sort of work is mannered, and that its style will pass, still it is indisputable that the vitality of the time exists in such work.

Here is a book that you can read without being dead sure of what you will find on the next page, or at the end of the next couplet. There is no doubt that M. Jouve sees with his own eyes and feels with his own nerves. Nothing is more boresome than an author who pretends to know less about things than he really does know. It is this silly sort of false naïveté that rots the weaker productions of Maeterlinck. Thank heaven the advance guard is in process of escaping it.

[Pg 166]

It is possible that the new style will grow as weak in the future in the hands of imitators as has, by now, the Victorian manner, but for the nonce it is refreshing. Work of this sort can not be produced by the yard in stolid imitation of dead authors.

I defy anyone to read it without being forced to think, immediately, about life and the nature of things. I have perused this volume twice, and I have enjoyed it.

E. P.


The Poetry Society of America, organized in 1910, was a natural response, perhaps at the time unconscious, to the reawakened interest in poetry, now so widely apparent.

There seemed no reason why poetry, one of the noblest of the arts, should not take to itself visible organization as well as its sister arts of music and painting, since it was certain that such organization contributed much to their advancement and appreciation. Poetry alone remained an isolated art, save through the doubtful value of coteries dedicated to the study of some particular poet. In the sense of fellowship, of the creative sympathy of contact, of the keener appreciation which must follow the wider knowledge of an art, poetry stood alone, detached from these avenues open from the beginning to other arts. [Pg 167]

The Society was therefore founded, with a charter membership of about fifty persons, which included many of the poets doing significant work to-day, together with critics and representatives of other arts, the purpose from the outset being to include the appreciators of poetry as well as its producers. It has grown to nearly two hundred members, distributed from coast to coast, and eventually it will probably resolve itself into branch societies, with the chief organization, as now, in New York. Such societies should have a wide influence upon their respective communities in stimulating interest in the work of living poets, to which the Poetry Society as an organization is chiefly addressed.

Since the passing of the nineteenth-century poets, the art of poetry, like the art of painting, has taken on new forms and become the vehicle of a new message. The poet of to-day speaks through so different a medium, his themes are so diverse from those of the elder generation, that he cannot hope to find his public in their lingering audience. He must look to his contemporaries, to those touched by the same issues and responsive to the same ideals. To aid in creating this atmosphere for the poet, to be the nucleus of a movement for the wider knowledge of contemporaneous verse, the Poetry Society of America took form and in its brief period has, I think, justified the idea of its promoters. [Pg 168]

Its meetings are held once a month at the National Arts Club in New York, with which it is affiliated, and are given chiefly to the reading and discussion of poetry, both of recently published volumes and of poems submitted anonymously. This feature has proved perhaps the most attractive, and while criticism based upon one hearing of a poem cannot be taken as authoritative, it is often constructive and valuable.

The Society is assembling an interesting collection of books, a twentieth century library of American poetry. Aside from its own collection, it is taking steps to promote a wider representation of modern poets in public libraries.

Jessie B. Rittenhouse.



Mr. Pound's phrase in his poem To Whistler, American, has aroused more or less resentment, some of it quite emphatic. Apparently we of "these states" have no longing for an Ezekiel; our prophets must give us, not the bitter medicine which possibly we need, but the sugar-and-water of compliment which we can always swallow with a smile.

Perhaps we should examine our consciences a little, or at least step down from our self-erected pedestals long enough to listen to this accusation. What has become of our boasted sense of humor if we cannot let our young poets rail, or our sense of justice if we cannot cease smiling and weigh their words? In certain respects we Americans [Pg 169] are a "mass of dolts," and in none more than our huge stolid, fundamental indifference to our own art. Mr. Pound is not the first American poet who has stood with his back to the wall, and struck out blindly with clenched fists in a fierce impulse to fight. Nor is he the first whom we, by this same stolid and indifferent rejection, have forced into exile and rebellion.

After a young poet has applied in vain to the whole list of American publishers and editors, and learned that even though he were a genius of the first magnitude they could not risk money or space on his poetry because the public would not buy it—after a series of such rebuffs our young aspirant goes abroad and succeeds in interesting some London publisher. The English critics, let us say, praise his book, and echoes of their praises reach our astonished ears. Thereupon the poet in exile finds that he has thus gained a public, and editorial suffrages, in America, and that the most effective way of increasing that public and those suffrages is, to remain in exile and guard his foreign reputation.

Meantime it is quite probable that a serious poet will have grown weary of such open and unashamed colonialism, that he will prefer to stay among people who are seriously interested in aesthetics and who know their own minds. For nothing is so hard to meet as indifference; blows are easier for a live man to endure than neglect. The poet who cries out his message against a stone wall will be silenced in the end, even though he bear a seraph's wand and speak with the tongues of angels. [Pg 170]


One phase of our colonialism in art, the singing of opera in foreign languages, has been persistently opposed by Eleanor E. Freer, who has set to music of rare distinction many of the finest English lyrics, old and new. She writes:

In the Basilikon Doron, King James I of England writes to his son: "And I would, also, advise you to write in your own language; for there is nothing left to be said in Greek and Latin already—and besides that, it best becometh a King to purify and make famous his own tongue." Might we add, it best becometh the kings of art in America and England to sing their own language and thus aid in the progress of their national music and poetry?


Messrs. Arthur Davison Ficke and Witter Bynner belong to the younger group of American poets, both having been born since 1880, the former in Davenport, Iowa, and the latter in Brooklyn. Both were graduated from Harvard early in this century, after which Mr. Ficke was admitted to the bar, and Mr. Bynner became assistant editor of McClure's.

Mr. Ficke has published From the Isles, The Happy Princess, The Earth Passion and The Breaking of Bonds; also Mr. Faust, a dramatic poem, and a series of poems called Twelve Japanese Painters, will be published this year. Mr. Bynner has published An Ode to Harvard and Other Poems, and An Immigrant. His play, His Father's House, was recently produced in California. [Pg 171]

The March number of Poetry will contain The Silent House, a one-act play, by Agnes Lee, and poems by Alice Meynell, Alfred Noyes, Fannie Stearns Davis and others. [Pg 172]


Bugle Notes of Courage and Love, by Althea A. Ogden. Unity Publishing Co. Altar-Side Messages, by Evelyn H. Walker. Unity Publishing Co. Dream Harbor, by J. W. Vallandingham. Privately printed. Hopeful Thoughts, by Eleanor Hope. Franklin Hudson Publishing Co. The Youth Replies, by Louis How. Sherman, French & Co. Songs of the Love Unending, A Sonnet Sequence, by Kendall Banning. Brothers of the Book. William Allingham, The Golden Treasury Series. The Macmillan Co. Idylls Beside the Strand, by Franklin F. Phillips. Sherman, French & Co. The Minstrel with the Self-Same Song, by Charles A. Fisher. The Eichelberger Book Co. The Wife of Potiphar, with Other Poems, by Harvey M. Watts. The John C. Winston Co. A Scroll of Seers, A Wall Anthology. Peter Paul & Son.

[Pg 173]

POETRY--A Magazine of Verse Vol. I
No. 6
MARCH, 1913  
David. [Re-reading a letter.] How may a letter bring such darkness down— With this: "She dallied with your love too long!" And this: "It is the word of all the town: "Corinna has no soul, for all her song!"
Martha. [Entering with flowers.] O sir, I bring you flaming bergamot, And early asters, for your window-sill. And where I found them? Now you'll guess it not. I visited the garden on the hill, And gathered till my arms could hold no more.
David. The garden of the little silent house!
Martha. The city lured her from her viny door. But see, the flowers have stayed!
David.       They seem to drowse And dream of one they lost, a paler-blown. How fares the house upon the hill?
[Pg 174] Martha.       The blinds Are fast of late, and all are intergrown With weedy havoc tossed by searching winds.
David. How somber suddenly the sky! A shower Is in the air.
Martha. I'll light the lamps.
David.       Not yet. Leave me the beauty of the twilit hour.
Martha. Hear the wind rising! How the moorings fret! More than a shower is on its way through space. I would not be aboard of yonder barque. [She goes out.] David. Corinna! Now may I recall her face. It is my light to think by in the dark. Yes, all my years of study, all the will Tenacious to achieve, the tempered strife, The victories attained through patient skill, Lie at the door of one dear human life. And yet ... the letter ... Often have I read How love relumes the flowers and the trees. True! For my world is newly garmented: Rewards seem slight, and slighter penalties. Daily companionship is more and more. To make one little good more viable, To lift one load, is worth the heart's outpour. And she—she has made all things wonderful. And yet ... the letter ... [Pg 175] O to break a spell Wherein the stars are crumbling unto dust! There never was a hope—I know it well, And struggle on, and love because I must. Never a hope? Shall ever any scheme, Her silence, or alarm of written word, Or voiced asseveration, shake my dream? She loves me! By love's anguish, I have heard! We two from our soul-towers across a vale Are calling each to each, alert, aware. Shall one of us one day the other hail, And no reply be borne upon the air? Corinna, come to light my heart's dim place! O come to me, Belovèd and Besought, O'er grief, o'er gladness,—even o'er death apace,— For I could greet your phantom, so it brought Love's own reality!... A song of hers Seems striving hither, a faint villanelle Half smothered by the gale's mad roisterers. She used to sing it in the bracken dell. Here is the rain against the window beating In heavy drops that presage wilder storm. The lake is lost within a lurid sheeting; The house upon the hill has changed its form. The melancholy pine-trees weep in rocking. And what's that clamor at the outer door? Martha! O Martha! Somebody is knocking! [Calling.]
[Pg 176] Martha. [Re-entering.] You hear the rills that down the gutters roar.
David. And are you deaf? The door—go open it! This is no night to leave a man outside!
Martha. [Muttering and going toward the door.] And is it I am growing deaf a bit, And blind a bit, with other ill-betide! Well, I can see to thread a needle still, And I can hear the ticking of the clock, And I can fetch a basket from the mill. But hallow me if ever I heard knock! [She throws the door open. David starts up and rushes forward with outstretched arms.] David. Corinna! You, Corinna! Drenched and cold! At last, at last! But how in all the rain! Martha! [Martha stands motionless, unseeing.] Good Martha, you are growing old! Draw fast the shades—shut out the hurricane. Here, take the dripping cloak from out the room; Bring cordial from the purple damson pressed, And light the lamps, the candles—fire the gloom. Why stand you gaping? See you not the guest?
Martha. I opened wide the door unto the storm. But never heard I step upon the sill. All the black night let in no living form. I see no guest. Look hard as e'er I will,[Pg 177] I see none here but you and my poor self.
David. The room that was my mother's room prepare. Spread out warm garments on the oaken shelf— Her gown, the little shawl she used to wear. [Martha, wide-eyed, bewildered, lights the lamps and candles and goes out, raising her hands.] Corinna. The moments I may tarry fade and press. Something impelled me hither, some clear flame. They said I had no soul! O David, yes, They said I had no soul! And so I came. I have been singing, singing, all the way, O, singing ever since the darkness grew And I grew chill and followed the small ray. Lean close, and let my longing rest in you!
David. Dear balm of light, I never thought to win From out the pallid hours for ever throbbing! How did you know the sorrow I was in?
Corinna. A flock of leaves came sobbing, sobbing, sobbing.
David. O, now I hold you fast, my love, my own, My festival upleaping from an ember! But, timid child, how could you come alone Across the pathless woods?
Corinna. Do you remember?— Over the summer lake one starry, stilly, Sweet night, when you and I were drifting, dear, I frighted at the shadow of a lily! It is all strange, but now I have no fear.
[Pg 178] David. Your eyes are weary, drooping. Sleep, then, sleep.
Corinna. I must go over to the silent house.
David. The dwelling stands forsaken up the steep, With never beast nor human to arouse!
Corinna. Soon will the windows gleam with many lamps. Hark!—heavy wheels are toiling to the north.
David. I will go with you where the darkness ramps.
Corinna. Strong arms are in the storm to bear me forth.
David. Not in these garments dripping as the trees! Not in these clinging shadows!
Corinna. Ah, good-night! Dear love, dear love, I must go forth in these. Tomorrow you shall see me all in white.
Agnes Lee

[Pg 179]

THE ORACLE (To the New Telescope on Mt. Wilson)
Of old sat one at Delphi brooding o'er The fretful earth;—ironically wise, Veiling her prescience in dark replies, She shaped the fates of men with mystic lore. The oracle is silent now. No more Fate parts the cloud that round omniscience lies. But thou, O Seer, dost tease our wild surmise With portents passing all the wealth of yore. For thou shalt spell the very thoughts of God! Before thy boundless vision, world on world Shall multiply in glit'ring sequence far; And all the little ways which men have trod Shall be as nothing by His star-dust whirled Into the making of a single star.
With angel's wings and brutish-human form, Weathered with centuries of sun and storm, He crouches yonder on the gallery wall, Monstrous, superb, indifferent, cynical: And all the pulse of Paris cannot stir Her one immutable philosopher.
Edmund Kemper Broadus

[Pg 180]

Now while the sunset offers, Shall we not take our own: The gems, the blazing coffers, The seas, the shores, the throne?
The sky-ships, radiant-masted, Move out, bear low our way. Oh, Life was dark while it lasted, Now for enduring day.
Now with the world far under, To draw up drowning men And show them lands of wonder Where they may build again.
There earthly sorrow falters, There longing has its wage; There gleam the ivory altars Of our lost pilgrimage.
—Swift flame—then shipwrecks only Beach in the ruined light; Above them reach up lonely The headlands of the night.
A hurt bird cries and flutters Her dabbled breast of brown; The western wall unshutters To fling one last rose down.
[Pg 181] A rose, a wild light after— And life calls through the years, "Who dreams my fountains' laughter Shall feed my wells with tears."
Ridgely Torrence
One wept, whose only babe was dead, New-born ten years ago. "Weep not; he is in bliss," they said. She answered, "Even so.
"Ten years ago was born in pain A child, not now forlorn; But oh, ten years ago in vain A mother, a mother was born."
Alice Meynell

[Pg 182]

Yes, stars were with me formerly. (I also knew the wind and sea; And hill-tops had my feet by heart. Their shaggéd heights would sting and start When I came leaping on their backs. I knew the earth's queer crooked cracks, Where hidden waters weave a low And druid chant of joy and woe.)
But stars were with me most of all. I heard them flame and break and fall. Their excellent array, their free Encounter with Eternity, I learned. And it was good to know That where God walked, I too might go.
Now, all these things are passed. For I Grow very old and glad to die. What did they profit me, say you, These distant bloodless things I knew? Profit? What profit hath the sea Of her deep-throated threnody? What profit hath the sun, who stands Staring on space with idle hands? And what should God Himself acquire From all the aeons' blood and fire?
[Pg 183] My profit is as theirs: to be Made proof against mortality: To know that I have companied With all that shines and lives, amid So much the years sift through their hands, Most mortal, windy, worthless sands.
This day I have great peace. With me Shall stars abide eternally!
I will go up the mountain after the Moon: She is caught in a dead fir-tree. Like a great pale apple of silver and pearl, Like a great pale apple is she.
I will leap and will clasp her in quick cold hands And carry her home in my sack. I will set her down safe on the oaken bench That stands at the chimney-back. And then I will sit by the fire all night, And sit by the fire all day. I will gnaw at the Moon to my heart's delight, Till I gnaw her slowly away.
[Pg 184] And while I grow mad with the Moon's cold taste, The World may beat on my door, Crying "Come out!" and crying "Make haste! And give us the Moon once more!" But I will not answer them ever at all; I will laugh, as I count and hide The great black beautiful seeds of the Moon In a flower-pot deep and wide. Then I will lie down and go fast asleep, Drunken with flame and aswoon. But the seeds will sprout, and the seeds will leap: The subtle swift seeds of the Moon.
And some day, all of the world that beats And cries at my door, shall see A thousand moon-leaves sprout from my thatch On a marvellous white Moon-tree! Then each shall have moons to his heart's desire: Apples of silver and pearl: Apples of orange and copper fire, Setting his five wits aswirl. And then they will thank me, who mock me now: "Wanting the Moon is he!" Oh, I'm off to the mountain after the Moon, Ere she falls from the dead fir-tree!
You must do nothing false Or cruel-lipped or low; For I am Conn the Fool, And Conn the Fool will know.
[Pg 185] I went by the door When Patrick Joyce looked out. He did not wish for me Or any one about.
He thought I did not see The fat bag in his hand. But Conn heard clinking gold, And Conn could understand.
I went by the door Where Michael Kane lay dead. I saw his Mary tie A red shawl round her head.
I saw a dark man lean Across her garden-wall. They did not know that Conn Walked by at late dusk-fall.
You must not scold or lie, Or hate or steal or kill, For I shall tell the wind That leaps along the hill;
And he will tell the stars That sing and never lie; And they will shout your sin In God's face, bye and bye.
And God will not forget, For all He loves you so.— He made me Conn the Fool, And bade me always know!

[Pg 186]

The water came up with a roar, The water came up to me. There was a wave with tusks of a boar, And he gnashed his tusks on me. I leaned, I leapt, and was free. He snarled and struggled and fled. Foaming and blind he turned to the sea, And his brothers trampled him dead.
The water came up with a shriek, The water came up to me. There was a wave with a woman's cheek, And she shuddered and clung to me. I crouched, I cast her away. She cursed me and swooned and died. Her green hair tangled like sea-weed lay Tossed out on the tearing tide.
Challenge and chase me, Storm! Harry and hate me, Wave! Wild as the wind is my heart, but warm, Sudden and merry and brave. For the water comes up with a shout, The water comes up to me. And oh, but I laugh, laugh out! And the great gulls laugh, and the sea!
Fannie Stearns Davis

[Pg 187]

What woman but would be Rid of thy mastery, Thou bully of the sea?
No more the gray sea's breast Need answer thy behest; No more thy sullen gun Shall greet the risen sun, Where the great dreadnaughts ride The breast of thy cold bride; Thou hast fulfilled thy fate: Need trade no more with hate!
Nay, but I celebrate Thy long-to-be-lorn mate, Thy mistress and her state, Thy lady sea's lorn state. She hath her empery Not only over thee But o'er our misery.
Hark, doth she mourn for thee?
Nay, what hath she of grief? She knoweth not the leaf That on her bosom falls, Thou last of admirals!
[Pg 188] Under the winter moon She singeth that fierce tune, Her immemorial rune; Knoweth not, late or soon, Careth not Any jot For her withholden boon To all thy spirit's pleas For infinite surcease!
If, on this winter night, O thou great admiral That in thy sombre pall Liest upon the land, Thy soul should take his flight And leave the frozen sand, And yearn above the surge, Think'st thou that any dirge, Grief inarticulate From thy bereaved mate, Would answer to thy soul Where the waste waters roll?
Nay, thou hast need of none! Thy long love-watch is done!

[Pg 189]

Early some morning in May-time I shall awaken When the breeze blowing in at the window Shall bathe me With the delicate scents Of the blossoms of apples, Filling my room with their coolness And beauty and fragrance— As of old, as of old, When your spirit dwelt with me, My heart shall be pure As the heart that you gave me.
Queen of all streets, Fifth Avenue Stretches her slender limbs From the great Arch of Triumph, on,— On, where the distance dims
The splendors of her jewelled robes, Her granite draperies; The magic, sunset-smitten walls That veil her marble knees;
For ninety squares she lies a queen, Superb, bare, unashamed, Yielding her beauty scornfully To worshippers unnamed.
[Pg 190] But at her feet her sister glows, A daughter of the South: Squalid, immeasurably mean,— But oh! her hot, sweet mouth!
My Thompson Street! a Tuscan girl, Hot with life's wildest blood; Her black shawl on her black, black hair, Her brown feet stained with mud;
A scarlet blossom at her lips, A new babe at her breast; A singer at a wine-shop door, (Her lover unconfessed).
Listen! a hurdy-gurdy plays— Now alien melodies: She smiles, she cannot quite forget The mother over-seas.
But she no less is mine alone, Mine, mine!... Who may I be? Have I betrayed her from her home? I am called Liberty!
The skies are sown with stars tonight, The sea is sown with light, The hollows of the heaving floor Gleam deep with light once more, The racing ebb-tide flashes past And seeks the vacant vast, A wind steals from a world asleep And walks the restless deep.
[Pg 191] It walks the deep in ecstasy, It lives! and loves to free Its spirit to the silent night, And breathes deep in delight; Above the sea that knows no coast, Beneath the starry host, The wind walks like the souls of men Who walk with God again.
The souls of men who walk with God! With faith's firm sandals shod, A lambent passion, body-free, Fain for eternity! O spirit born of human sighs, Set loose 'twixt sea and skies, Be thou an Angel of mankind, Thou night-unfettered wind!
Bear thou the dreams of weary earth, Bear thou Tomorrow's birth, Take all our longings up to Him Until His stars grow dim; A moving anchorage of prayer, Thou cool and healing air, Heading off-shore till shoreless dawn Breaks fair and night is gone.
Samuel McCoy

[Pg 192]

"THE HILL-FLOWERS" "I will lift up mine eyes to the hills."
Moving through the dew, moving through the dew, Ere I waken in the city—Life, thy dawn makes all things new! And up a fir-clad glen, far from all the haunts of men, Up a glen among the mountains, oh my feet are wings again!
Moving through the dew, moving through the dew, O mountains of my boyhood, I come again to you, By the little path I know, with the sea far below, And above, the great cloud-galleons with their sails of rose and snow;
As of old, when all was young, and the earth a song unsung And the heather through the crimson dawn its Eden incense flung From the mountain-heights of joy, for a careless-hearted boy, And the lavrocks rose like fountain sprays of bliss that ne'er could cloy,
[Pg 193] From their little beds of bloom, from the golden gorse and broom, With a song to God the Giver, o'er that waste of wild perfume; Blowing from height to height, in a glory of great light, While the cottage-clustered valleys held the lilac last of night,
So, when dawn is in the skies, in a dream, a dream, I rise, And I follow my lost boyhood to the heights of Paradise. Life, thy dawn makes all things new! Hills of Youth, I come to you, Moving through the dew, moving through the dew.
Moving through the dew, moving through the dew, Floats a brother's face to meet me! Is it you? Is it you? For the night I leave behind keeps these dazzled eyes still blind! But oh, the little hill-flowers, their scent is wise and kind;
And I shall not lose the way from the darkness to the day, While dust can cling as their scent clings to memory for aye; And the least link in the chain can recall the whole again, And heaven at last resume its far-flung harvests, grain by grain.
[Pg 194] To the hill-flowers clings my dust, and tho' eyeless Death may thrust All else into the darkness, in their heaven I put my trust; And a dawn shall bid me climb to the little spread of thyme Where first I heard the ripple of the fountain-heads of rhyme.
And a fir-wood that I know, from dawn to sunset-glow, Shall whisper to a lonely sea, that swings far, far below. Death, thy dawn makes all things new. Hills of Youth, I come to you, Moving through the dew, moving through the dew.
Alfred Noyes

[Pg 195]




Poetry as the inspiration of the Balkan war was the theme of a recent talk given by Madame Slavko Grouitch before the Friday Club in Chicago, and elsewhere, during her brief sojourn in her native country. Madame Grouitch was a student at the American School of Archaeology in Athens when she married the young Servian diplomat who now represents his nation in London.

According to the speaker, the Servian national songs have kept alive the heroic spirit of the people during more than four centuries of Turkish oppression. Through them each generation of the illiterate peasantry has fought once more the ancient wars, and followed once more the ancient leaders even to the final tragedy of the battle of Kossovo, where in 1377 they made their last brave stand against the Mohammedan invader. Whenever a few people assemble for a festival, some local bard, perhaps an old shepherd or soldier, a blind beggar or reformed brigand, will chant the old songs to the monotonous music of the gusle, while the people dance the Kolo. [Pg 196]

"There are thousands of songs in the Servian epic," says Mme. Grouitch, "and each has many variants according to whether it is sung in Bosnia, Herzegovina, Montenegro, Dalmatia, Servia, Bulgaria or Macedonia; for all these political divisions are peopled by the Servian race descended from the heroes whose deeds are the theme of such unwearied narration. The bard is called the Guslar from his one-stringed instrument, whose melancholy cadence—a sighing-forth of sound—affects the emotions and increases the pathos of the words. For the story is usually sad, even when it proclaims the triumph of great deeds."

These songs invariably begin:

Once it was so; now it is told.

And they as invariably end:

From me the song; from God health to you.

A number of poems were read from Mme. Mijatovich's rather uninspired translation of the Kossovo series, published in London in 1881. Extreme simplicity and vividness characterize the old epic, which follows the hopeless struggle of the noble Czar Lazar against the foe without, and suspicions, dissensions, blunders, even treacheries, within. Certain characters stand out with the uncompromising exactness of some biblical story: the Czar himself; his over-zealous Vojvode; Milosh Obilich, whose murder of Sultan Murad precipitated the disaster; and certain haughty and passionate women, like the Empress Militza and her two daughters. Also "Marko, the King's son," whose half-mythical figure is of the race of Achilles. [Pg 197]

"There was one thing," said Mme. Grouitch, "which the Turk could not take away from the Serb—the heavenly gift of poetry; that continued to dwell hidden in the breast of the southern Slav. His body was enslaved, but his soul was not; his physical life was oppressed, but his spiritual being remained free. In the eighteenth century Europe re-discovered the Servian national poetry, and became conscious that the race survived as well as its ideals. Then Serb and Bulgar again appeared in current history, and began to retrace the ancient boundaries.

"All the conferences of all the powers can never diminish the hopes, nor eclipse the glory of the Serb race in the minds of the Balkan peoples; because the Guslar, who is their supreme national leader, is forever telling them of that glory, and urging them to concerted action against all outside foes. It was the Guslar who led the Montenegrin Serbs from one heroic victory to another, so that 'their war annals,' as Gladstone said, 'are more glorious than those of all the rest of the world.' It was the Guslar who inspired Kara George and his heroic band of Servian peasants to keep up their battle until free Servia was born.

"Amid the roar of cannon at Lule Burgas and Monastir, I could hear the mighty voice of the Guslar reminding Serb and Bulgar that their fight was for 'the honored cross and golden liberty.' And they obeyed because it was the voice of their nation. It is this [Pg 198] irresistible national spirit which leads their armies, and beside it the spirit of German training behind the Turk is a lifeless shadow. The Ottoman power in Europe is in ruins now, a wreck in the path of a national earthquake which the Guslar has prophesied for five hundred years. The Guslar has done his duty, and he stands today in a blaze of glory at the head of the united and victorious nations of the Balkans."

The speaker told of an impressive ceremony at the Servian legation in London. Young Servians, recalled home for military service last autumn, met there on the eve of departure. Wine being served, the minister and his young patriots rose with lifted glasses, and chanted the ancient summons of Czar Lazar to his people:

Whoever born of Serbian blood or kin Comes not to fight the Turk on Kossovo, To him be never son or daughter born, No child to heir his lands or bear his name! For him no grape grow red, no corn grow white; In his hands nothing prosper! May he live Alone, unloved! and die unmourned, alone!
H. M.


Some curiosity has been aroused concerning Imagisme, and as I was unable to find anything definite about it in print, I sought out an imagiste, with intent to discover whether the group itself knew anything about the "movement." I gleaned these facts. [Pg 199]

The imagistes admitted that they were contemporaries of the Post Impressionists and the Futurists; but they had nothing in common with these schools. They had not published a manifesto. They were not a revolutionary school; their only endeavor was to write in accordance with the best tradition, as they found it in the best writers of all time,—in Sappho, Catullus, Villon. They seemed to be absolutely intolerant of all poetry that was not written in such endeavor, ignorance of the best tradition forming no excuse. They had a few rules, drawn up for their own satisfaction only, and they had not published them. They were:

1. Direct treatment of the "thing," whether subjective or objective.
2. To use absolutely no word that did not contribute to the presentation.
3. As regarding rhythm: to compose in sequence of the musical phrase, not in sequence of a metronome.

By these standards they judged all poetry, and found most of it wanting. They held also a certain 'Doctrine of the Image,' which they had not committed to writing; they said that it did not concern the public, and would provoke useless discussion.

The devices whereby they persuaded approaching poetasters to attend their instruction were: [Pg 200]

1. They showed him his own thought already splendidly expressed in some classic
(and the school musters altogether a most formidable erudition).
2. They re-wrote his verses before his eyes, using about ten words to his fifty.

Even their opponents admit of them—ruefully—"At least they do keep bad poets from writing!"

I found among them an earnestness that is amazing to one accustomed to the usual London air of poetic dilettantism. They consider that Art is all science, all religion, philosophy and metaphysic. It is true that snobisme may be urged against them; but it is at least snobisme in its most dynamic form, with a great deal of sound sense and energy behind it; and they are stricter with themselves than with any outsider.

F. S. Flint


An "Image" is that which presents an intellectual and emotional complex in an instant of time. I use the term "complex" rather in the technical sense employed by the newer psychologists, such as Hart, though we might not agree absolutely in our application.

It is the presentation of such a "complex" instantaneously which gives that sense of sudden liberation; that sense of freedom from time limits and space limits; that sense of sudden growth, which we experience in the presence of the greatest works of art. [Pg 201]

It is better to present one Image in a lifetime than to produce voluminous works.

All this, however, some may consider open to debate. The immediate necessity is to tabulate A List Of Dont's for those beginning to write verses. But I can not put all of them into Mosaic negative.

To begin with, consider the three rules recorded by Mr. Flint, not as dogma—never consider anything as dogma—but as the result of long contemplation, which, even if it is some one else's contemplation, may be worth consideration.

Pay no attention to the criticism of men who have never themselves written a notable work. Consider the discrepancies between the actual writing of the Greek poets and dramatists, and the theories of the Graeco-Roman grammarians, concocted to explain their metres.


Use no superfluous word, no adjective, which does not reveal something.

Don't use such an expression as "dim lands of peace." It dulls the image. It mixes an abstraction with the concrete. It comes from the writer's not realizing that the natural object is always the adequate symbol.

Go in fear of abstractions. Don't retell in mediocre verse what has already been done in good prose. Don't think any intelligent person is going to be deceived when you try to shirk all the difficulties of the unspeakably difficult art of good prose by chopping your composition into line lengths. [Pg 202]

What the expert is tired of today the public will be tired of tomorrow.

Don't imagine that the art of poetry is any simpler than the art of music, or that you can please the expert before you have spent at least as much effort on the art of verse as the average piano teacher spends on the art of music.

Be influenced by as many great artists as you can, but have the decency either to acknowledge the debt outright, or to try to conceal it.

Don't allow "influence" to mean merely that you mop up the particular decorative vocabulary of some one or two poets whom you happen to admire. A Turkish war correspondent was recently caught red-handed babbling in his dispatches of "dove-gray" hills, or else it was "pearl-pale," I can not remember.

Use either no ornament or good ornament.


Let the candidate fill his mind with the finest cadences he can discover, preferably in a foreign language so that the meaning of the words may be less likely to divert his attention from the movement; e. g., Saxon charms, [Pg 203] Hebridean Folk Songs, the verse of Dante, and the lyrics of Shakespeare—if he can dissociate the vocabulary from the cadence. Let him dissect the lyrics of Goethe coldly into their component sound values, syllables long and short, stressed and unstressed, into vowels and consonants.

It is not necessary that a poem should rely on its music, but if it does rely on its music that music must be such as will delight the expert.

Let the neophyte know assonance and alliteration, rhyme immediate and delayed, simple and polyphonic, as a musician would expect to know harmony and counterpoint and all the minutiae of his craft. No time is too great to give to these matters or to any one of them, even if the artist seldom have need of them.

Don't imagine that a thing will "go" in verse just because it's too dull to go in prose.

Don't be "viewy"—leave that to the writers of pretty little philosophic essays. Don't be descriptive; remember that the painter can describe a landscape much better than you can, and that he has to know a deal more about it.

When Shakespeare talks of the "Dawn in russet mantle clad" he presents something which the painter does not present. There is in this line of his nothing that one can call description; he presents.

Consider the way of the scientists rather than the way of an advertising agent for a new soap.

[Pg 204]

The scientist does not expect to be acclaimed as a great scientist until he has discovered something. He begins by learning what has been discovered already. He goes from that point onward. He does not bank on being a charming fellow personally. He does not expect his friends to applaud the results of his freshman class work. Freshmen in poetry are unfortunately not confined to a definite and recognizable class room. They are "all over the shop." Is it any wonder "the public is indifferent to poetry?"

Don't chop your stuff into separate iambs. Don't make each line stop dead at the end, and then begin every next line with a heave. Let the beginning of the next line catch the rise of the rhythm wave, unless you want a definite longish pause.

In short, behave as a musician, a good musician, when dealing with that phase of your art which has exact parallels in music. The same laws govern, and you are bound by no others.

Naturally, your rhythmic structure should not destroy the shape of your words, or their natural sound, or their meaning. It is improbable that, at the start, you will be able to get a rhythm-structure strong enough to affect them very much, though you may fall a victim to all sorts of false stopping due to line ends and caesurae. [Pg 205]

The musician can rely on pitch and the volume of the orchestra. You can not. The term harmony is misapplied to poetry; it refers to simultaneous sounds of different pitch. There is, however, in the best verse a sort of residue of sound which remains in the ear of the hearer and acts more or less as an organ-base. A rhyme must have in it some slight element of surprise if it is to give pleasure; it need not be bizarre or curious, but it must be well used if used at all.

Vide further Vildrac and Duhamel's notes on rhyme in "Technique Poetique."

That part of your poetry which strikes upon the imaginative eye of the reader will lose nothing by translation into a foreign tongue; that which appeals to the ear can reach only those who take it in the original.

Consider the definiteness of Dante's presentation, as compared with Milton's rhetoric. Read as much of Wordsworth as does not seem too unutterably dull.

If you want the gist of the matter go to Sappho, Catullus, Villon, Heine when he is in the vein, Gautier when he is not too frigid; or, if you have not the tongues, seek out the leisurely Chaucer. Good prose will do you no harm, and there is good discipline to be had by trying to write it.

Translation is likewise good training, if you find that your original matter "wobbles" when you try to rewrite it. The meaning of the poem to be translated can not "wobble."

If you are using a symmetrical form, don't put in what you want to say and then fill up the remaining vacuums with slush. [Pg 206]

Don't mess up the perception of one sense by trying to define it in terms of another. This is usually only the result of being too lazy to find the exact word. To this clause there are possibly exceptions.

The first three simple proscriptions [D] will throw out nine-tenths of all the bad poetry now accepted as standard and classic; and will prevent you from many a crime of production.

" ... Mais d'abord il faut etre un poete," as MM. Duhamel and Vildrac have said at the end of their little book, "Notes sur la Technique Poetique"; but in an American one takes that at least for granted, otherwise why does one get born upon that august continent!

Ezra Pound


Agnes Lee (Mrs. Otto Freer) who has lived much in Boston, but is now a resident of Chicago, is known as the author of various books of poetry, the most representative, perhaps, being The Border of the Lake, published about two years ago by Sherman, French & Co. She has translated Gautier's Emaux et Camees into English poetry; and has contributed to the magazines. Her long poem, The Asphodel, which appeared in The North American Review several years ago, attracted wide attention.

Mr. Edmund Kemper Broadus is a member of the faculty of the University of Alberta, Canada.

[Pg 207]

Miss Fannie Stearns Davis is a young American who has written many songs and lyrics, a collection of which is to be published this spring. She was born in Cleveland, Ohio, but now lives in the East.

Mrs. Meynell, who is the wife of Mr. Wilfrid Meynell, editor of one of the leading English Catholic reviews, hardly needs an introduction in America, where her exquisite art is well known. Her small volumes of essays—The Rhythm of Life, The Color of Life, The Children, etc., and her Poems are published by The John Lane Company.

Mr. Ridgely Torrence is the author of El Dorado, A Tragedy, Abelard and Eloise, a poetic drama, and Rituals for The Events of Life. He contributes infrequently to the magazines, several of his longer poems having never been republished. He lives in New York.

Mr. Samuel McCoy was born, thirty-one years ago, at Burlington, Iowa. He now lives at Indianapolis, and devotes himself wholly to literary work. He was educated at Princeton, and from 1906 to 1908 was associate editor of The Reader. A collection of Mr. McCoy's poems will be issued in book form this year by the Bobbs-Merrill Company. [Pg 208]

Mr. Alfred Noyes, a young English poet, is a well known contributor to English and American magazines, and has published many books of poetry. The Loom of Years; The Flower of Old Japan; Poems; The Forest of Wild Thyme; Drake, English An Epic; Forty Singing Seamen, and The Enchanted Island are among the titles of his published works; and a new volume, The Tales of the Mermaid Tavern, is to be published this spring by the Frederick A. Stokes Co.

Early numbers of Poetry will contain poems by John G. Neihardt, Ezra Pound, Harriet Monroe, William Carlos Williams, Allen Upward, and others. [Pg 209]


Songs of a Syrian Lover, by Clinton Scollard. Elkin Mathews. Annatese of Song, by George M. P. Baird. Privately Printed. Pearls of Thought, A Collection of Original Poems, by Samuel M. Fleishman. Privately Printed. The Summons of the King, A Play, by Philip Becker Goetz. The MacDowell Press. Drake, An English Epic, by Alfred Noyes. Frederick A. Stokes Co. Sherwood, or Robin Hood and the Three Kings, A Play in Five Acts, by Alfred Noyes. Frederick A. Stokes Co. The Enchanted Island and Other Poems, by Alfred Noyes. Frederick A Stokes Co. Songs of the City, by DeCamp Leland. The Westende Publishing Co. In Vivid Gardens, by Marguerite Wilkinson. Sherman, French & Co. A Book of Verse, by Alice Hathaway Cunningham. Cochrane Publishing Co. Chilhowee, A Legend of the Great Smoky Mountains, by Henry V. Maxwell. Knoxville Printing Co. Sappho, And the Island of Lesbos, by Mary Mills Patrick. Houghton Mifflin Co. Harp of Milan, by Sister M. Fidés Shepperson. J. H. Yewdale & Sons. Two Legends, A Souvenir of Sodus Bay, by Mrs. B. C. Rude. Privately Printed. Moods, by David M. Cory. The Poet Lore Co. Poems, by Charles D. Platt. Charles D. Platt, Dover. New Jersey. Poems, Old and New, by A. H. Beesly. Longmans, Green & Co. Paroles devant la Vie, par Alexandre Mercereau. E. Figuière Alexandre Mercereau, par Jean Metzinger. E. Figuiére, Paris. Anthologie-Critique, par Florian-Parmentier. Gastien-Serge, Paris.


The Wild Hawk, Hervey White. The Maverick Press, Woodstock, N. Y. The Bibelot, Thos. B. Mosher, Portland, Maine. The Idler, Robert J. Shores, New York City. The Century, New York City. The Forum, New York City. The Conservator, Horace Traubel, Philadelphia. The Nation, New York City. The Poetry Review, Harold Munro, London. The Poetry Review (New Series), Stephen Phillips, London. The Literary Digest, New York City. Current Opinion, New York City. The International, New York City. The Dial, Chicago. The Survey, New York City. The Nation, New York City. The Music News, Chicago. Mercure de France, 26 Rue de Condé, Paris. L'Effort Libre, Galerie Vildrac, 11 Rue de Seine, Paris. Les Poétes, E. Basset, 3 Rue Dante, Paris. (This number devoted to poems selected from the work of Nicolas Beauduin, Paroxyste.) L'Ile Sonnante, 21 Rue Rousselet, Paris.




Aldington, Richard:  
  To a Greek Marble  42
  Au Vieux Jardin  43
Banning, Kendall:  
  Love Songs of the Open Road 110
Brink, Roscoe W.:  
  Helen Is Ill 117
Broadus, Edmund Kemper:  
  The Oracle 179
  A Gargoyle on Notre Dame 179
Bynner, Witter:  
  Apollo Troubadour 150
  One of the Crowd 153
  Neighbors 155
  The Hills of San José 156
  Grieve Not for Beauty 156
  The Mystic 157
  Passing Near 158
Campbell, Joseph:  
  The Piper  33
Conkling, Grace Hazard:  
  Symphony of a Mexican Garden  11
Cawein, Madison:  
  Waste Land 104
  My Lady of the Beeches 106
Corbin, Alice:  
  America  81
  Symbols  82
  The Star  82
  Nodes  83
Davis, Fannie Stearns:  
  Profits 182
  Two Songs of Conn the Fool 183
  Storm Dance 186
Dudley, Helen:  
  To One Unknown  10
Ficke, Arthur Davison:  
  Poetry   1
  Swinburne, An Elegy 137
  To a Child—Twenty Years Hence 144
  Portrait of an Old Woman 145
  The Three Sisters 146
  Among Shadows 147
  A Watteau Melody 147
Fitch, Anita:  
  The Wayfarers 108
  Les Cruels Amoureux 109
H. D. "Imagiste":  
  Verses, Translations and Reflections from "The Anthology" 118
Lee, Agnes:  
  The Silent House 173
Lindsay, Nicholas Vachel:  
  General Booth Enters into Heaven 101
Long, Lily A.:  
  The Singing Place  47
  Immured  49
Lorimer, Emilia Stuart:  
  Fish of the Flood   9
McCoy, Samuel:  
  Dirge for a Dead Admiral 187
  Spring Song 189
  A Sweetheart: Thompson Street 189
  Off-shore Wind 190
Meynell, Alice:  
  Maternity 181
Monroe, Harriet:  
  Nogi  50
Moody, William Vaughn:  
  I Am the Woman   3
Noyes, Alfred:  
  The Hill Flowers 192
Pound, Ezra:  
  To Whistler, American   7
  Middle-aged   8
Reed, John:  
  Sangar  71
Rensselaer, Mrs. Schuyler Van:  
  Under Two Windows  44
Rhys, Ernest:  
  A Song of Happiness 114
Smith, Clark Ashton:  
  Remembered Light  77
  Sorrowing of Winds  80
Sterling, George:  
  A Legend of the Dove  75
  At the Grand Cañon  76
  Kindred  77
Tagore, Rabindranath:  
  Poems  84
Torrence, Ridgely:  
  Santa Barbara Beach 180
Towne, Charles Hanson:  
  Beyond the Stars  35
Widdemer, Margaret:  
  The Jester  51
  The Beggars  52
Wyatt, Edith:  
  Sympathy 112
Yeats, William Butler:  
  The Mountain Tomb  67
  To a Child Dancing upon the Shore  68
  Fallen Majesty  68
  Love and the Bird  69
  The Realists  70



As It Was, H. M.  19
On the Reading of Poetry, E. W.  22
The Motive of the Magazine, H. M.  26
Moody's Poems, H. M.  54
Bohemian Poetry, Ezra Pound  57
"The Music of the Human Heart," E. W.  59
The Open Door  62
A Perfect Return, A. C. H.  87
Tagore's Poems, Ezra Pound  92


  The Poems of Rosamund Marriott Watson  94
  The Adventures of Young Maverick, by Hervey White  95
  The Iscariot, by Eden Phillpotts  96
  Interpretations, by Zoë Akins  97
  Lyrical Poems, by Lucy Lyttelton  97
Status Rerum, Ezra Pound 123


  The Lyric Year, 128
  The Human Fantasy, and The Beloved Adventure,  
    by John Hall Wheelock 131
  Poems and Ballads, by Hermann Hagedorn 132
  Uriel and Other Poems, by Percy MacKaye 133
  The Tragedy of Etarre, by Rhys Carpenter 133
  Gabriel, by Isabelle Howe Fiske 133
  The Unconquered Air, by Florence Earle Coates 133
  The Story of a Round House and Other Poems,  
    by John Masefield 160
  Présences, by P. J. Jouve 165
The Poetry Society of America, Jessie B. Rittenhouse 166
"That Mass of Dolts" 168
The Servian Epic, H. M. 195
Imagisme, F. S. Flint 199
A Few Don'ts by an Imagiste, Ezra Pound 202
Notes  29,  64,  99, 134, 168, 206

Editor Harriet Monroe

Advisory Committee

Henry B. Fuller
  Edith Wyatt
  H. C. Chatfield-Taylor

Foreign Correspondent

Ezra Pound

Administration Committee

William T. Abbott
  Charles H. Hamil




"Brown and Gold—de Race." "Grenat et Or—Le Petit Cardinal."



Editor's Note—In response to many requests for information regarding Imagism and the Imagistes, we publish this note by Mr. Flint, supplementing it with further exemplification by Mr. Pound. It will be seen from these that Imagism is not necessarily associated with Hellenic subjects, or with vers libre as a prescribed form.


Noted by Mr. Flint.

End of Project Gutenberg's Poetry: A Magazine of Verse, Volume I, by Various


***** This file should be named 43224-h.htm or *****
This and all associated files of various formats will be found in:

Produced by David Starner, Paul Marshall and the Online
Distributed Proofreading Team at (This
book was produced from images made available by the
HathiTrust Digital Library.)

Updated editions will replace the previous one--the old editions
will be renamed.

Creating the works from public domain print editions means that no
one owns a United States copyright in these works, so the Foundation
(and you!) can copy and distribute it in the United States without
permission and without paying copyright royalties.  Special rules,
set forth in the General Terms of Use part of this license, apply to
copying and distributing Project Gutenberg-tm electronic works to
protect the PROJECT GUTENBERG-tm concept and trademark.  Project
Gutenberg is a registered trademark, and may not be used if you
charge for the eBooks, unless you receive specific permission.  If you
do not charge anything for copies of this eBook, complying with the
rules is very easy.  You may use this eBook for nearly any purpose
such as creation of derivative works, reports, performances and
research.  They may be modified and printed and given away--you may do
practically ANYTHING with public domain eBooks.  Redistribution is
subject to the trademark license, especially commercial



To protect the Project Gutenberg-tm mission of promoting the free
distribution of electronic works, by using or distributing this work
(or any other work associated in any way with the phrase "Project
Gutenberg"), you agree to comply with all the terms of the Full Project
Gutenberg-tm License available with this file or online at

Section 1.  General Terms of Use and Redistributing Project Gutenberg-tm
electronic works

1.A.  By reading or using any part of this Project Gutenberg-tm
electronic work, you indicate that you have read, understand, agree to
and accept all the terms of this license and intellectual property
(trademark/copyright) agreement.  If you do not agree to abide by all
the terms of this agreement, you must cease using and return or destroy
all copies of Project Gutenberg-tm electronic works in your possession.
If you paid a fee for obtaining a copy of or access to a Project
Gutenberg-tm electronic work and you do not agree to be bound by the
terms of this agreement, you may obtain a refund from the person or
entity to whom you paid the fee as set forth in paragraph 1.E.8.

1.B.  "Project Gutenberg" is a registered trademark.  It may only be
used on or associated in any way with an electronic work by people who
agree to be bound by the terms of this agreement.  There are a few
things that you can do with most Project Gutenberg-tm electronic works
even without complying with the full terms of this agreement.  See
paragraph 1.C below.  There are a lot of things you can do with Project
Gutenberg-tm electronic works if you follow the terms of this agreement
and help preserve free future access to Project Gutenberg-tm electronic
works.  See paragraph 1.E below.

1.C.  The Project Gutenberg Literary Archive Foundation ("the Foundation"
or PGLAF), owns a compilation copyright in the collection of Project
Gutenberg-tm electronic works.  Nearly all the individual works in the
collection are in the public domain in the United States.  If an
individual work is in the public domain in the United States and you are
located in the United States, we do not claim a right to prevent you from
copying, distributing, performing, displaying or creating derivative
works based on the work as long as all references to Project Gutenberg
are removed.  Of course, we hope that you will support the Project
Gutenberg-tm mission of promoting free access to electronic works by
freely sharing Project Gutenberg-tm works in compliance with the terms of
this agreement for keeping the Project Gutenberg-tm name associated with
the work.  You can easily comply with the terms of this agreement by
keeping this work in the same format with its attached full Project
Gutenberg-tm License when you share it without charge with others.

1.D.  The copyright laws of the place where you are located also govern
what you can do with this work.  Copyright laws in most countries are in
a constant state of change.  If you are outside the United States, check
the laws of your country in addition to the terms of this agreement
before downloading, copying, displaying, performing, distributing or
creating derivative works based on this work or any other Project
Gutenberg-tm work.  The Foundation makes no representations concerning
the copyright status of any work in any country outside the United

1.E.  Unless you have removed all references to Project Gutenberg:

1.E.1.  The following sentence, with active links to, or other immediate
access to, the full Project Gutenberg-tm License must appear prominently
whenever any copy of a Project Gutenberg-tm work (any work on which the
phrase "Project Gutenberg" appears, or with which the phrase "Project
Gutenberg" is associated) is accessed, displayed, performed, viewed,
copied or distributed:

This eBook is for the use of anyone anywhere at no cost and with
almost no restrictions whatsoever.  You may copy it, give it away or
re-use it under the terms of the Project Gutenberg License included
with this eBook or online at

1.E.2.  If an individual Project Gutenberg-tm electronic work is derived
from the public domain (does not contain a notice indicating that it is
posted with permission of the copyright holder), the work can be copied
and distributed to anyone in the United States without paying any fees
or charges.  If you are redistributing or providing access to a work
with the phrase "Project Gutenberg" associated with or appearing on the
work, you must comply either with the requirements of paragraphs 1.E.1
through 1.E.7 or obtain permission for the use of the work and the
Project Gutenberg-tm trademark as set forth in paragraphs 1.E.8 or

1.E.3.  If an individual Project Gutenberg-tm electronic work is posted
with the permission of the copyright holder, your use and distribution
must comply with both paragraphs 1.E.1 through 1.E.7 and any additional
terms imposed by the copyright holder.  Additional terms will be linked
to the Project Gutenberg-tm License for all works posted with the
permission of the copyright holder found at the beginning of this work.

1.E.4.  Do not unlink or detach or remove the full Project Gutenberg-tm
License terms from this work, or any files containing a part of this
work or any other work associated with Project Gutenberg-tm.

1.E.5.  Do not copy, display, perform, distribute or redistribute this
electronic work, or any part of this electronic work, without
prominently displaying the sentence set forth in paragraph 1.E.1 with
active links or immediate access to the full terms of the Project
Gutenberg-tm License.

1.E.6.  You may convert to and distribute this work in any binary,
compressed, marked up, nonproprietary or proprietary form, including any
word processing or hypertext form.  However, if you provide access to or
distribute copies of a Project Gutenberg-tm work in a format other than
"Plain Vanilla ASCII" or other format used in the official version
posted on the official Project Gutenberg-tm web site (,
you must, at no additional cost, fee or expense to the user, provide a
copy, a means of exporting a copy, or a means of obtaining a copy upon
request, of the work in its original "Plain Vanilla ASCII" or other
form.  Any alternate format must include the full Project Gutenberg-tm
License as specified in paragraph 1.E.1.

1.E.7.  Do not charge a fee for access to, viewing, displaying,
performing, copying or distributing any Project Gutenberg-tm works
unless you comply with paragraph 1.E.8 or 1.E.9.

1.E.8.  You may charge a reasonable fee for copies of or providing
access to or distributing Project Gutenberg-tm electronic works provided

- You pay a royalty fee of 20% of the gross profits you derive from
     the use of Project Gutenberg-tm works calculated using the method
     you already use to calculate your applicable taxes.  The fee is
     owed to the owner of the Project Gutenberg-tm trademark, but he
     has agreed to donate royalties under this paragraph to the
     Project Gutenberg Literary Archive Foundation.  Royalty payments
     must be paid within 60 days following each date on which you
     prepare (or are legally required to prepare) your periodic tax
     returns.  Royalty payments should be clearly marked as such and
     sent to the Project Gutenberg Literary Archive Foundation at the
     address specified in Section 4, "Information about donations to
     the Project Gutenberg Literary Archive Foundation."

- You provide a full refund of any money paid by a user who notifies
     you in writing (or by e-mail) within 30 days of receipt that s/he
     does not agree to the terms of the full Project Gutenberg-tm
     License.  You must require such a user to return or
     destroy all copies of the works possessed in a physical medium
     and discontinue all use of and all access to other copies of
     Project Gutenberg-tm works.

- You provide, in accordance with paragraph 1.F.3, a full refund of any
     money paid for a work or a replacement copy, if a defect in the
     electronic work is discovered and reported to you within 90 days
     of receipt of the work.

- You comply with all other terms of this agreement for free
     distribution of Project Gutenberg-tm works.

1.E.9.  If you wish to charge a fee or distribute a Project Gutenberg-tm
electronic work or group of works on different terms than are set
forth in this agreement, you must obtain permission in writing from
both the Project Gutenberg Literary Archive Foundation and Michael
Hart, the owner of the Project Gutenberg-tm trademark.  Contact the
Foundation as set forth in Section 3 below.


1.F.1.  Project Gutenberg volunteers and employees expend considerable
effort to identify, do copyright research on, transcribe and proofread
public domain works in creating the Project Gutenberg-tm
collection.  Despite these efforts, Project Gutenberg-tm electronic
works, and the medium on which they may be stored, may contain
"Defects," such as, but not limited to, incomplete, inaccurate or
corrupt data, transcription errors, a copyright or other intellectual
property infringement, a defective or damaged disk or other medium, a
computer virus, or computer codes that damage or cannot be read by
your equipment.

of Replacement or Refund" described in paragraph 1.F.3, the Project
Gutenberg Literary Archive Foundation, the owner of the Project
Gutenberg-tm trademark, and any other party distributing a Project
Gutenberg-tm electronic work under this agreement, disclaim all
liability to you for damages, costs and expenses, including legal

defect in this electronic work within 90 days of receiving it, you can
receive a refund of the money (if any) you paid for it by sending a
written explanation to the person you received the work from.  If you
received the work on a physical medium, you must return the medium with
your written explanation.  The person or entity that provided you with
the defective work may elect to provide a replacement copy in lieu of a
refund.  If you received the work electronically, the person or entity
providing it to you may choose to give you a second opportunity to
receive the work electronically in lieu of a refund.  If the second copy
is also defective, you may demand a refund in writing without further
opportunities to fix the problem.

1.F.4.  Except for the limited right of replacement or refund set forth
in paragraph 1.F.3, this work is provided to you 'AS-IS', WITH NO OTHER

1.F.5.  Some states do not allow disclaimers of certain implied
warranties or the exclusion or limitation of certain types of damages.
If any disclaimer or limitation set forth in this agreement violates the
law of the state applicable to this agreement, the agreement shall be
interpreted to make the maximum disclaimer or limitation permitted by
the applicable state law.  The invalidity or unenforceability of any
provision of this agreement shall not void the remaining provisions.

1.F.6.  INDEMNITY - You agree to indemnify and hold the Foundation, the
trademark owner, any agent or employee of the Foundation, anyone
providing copies of Project Gutenberg-tm electronic works in accordance
with this agreement, and any volunteers associated with the production,
promotion and distribution of Project Gutenberg-tm electronic works,
harmless from all liability, costs and expenses, including legal fees,
that arise directly or indirectly from any of the following which you do
or cause to occur: (a) distribution of this or any Project Gutenberg-tm
work, (b) alteration, modification, or additions or deletions to any
Project Gutenberg-tm work, and (c) any Defect you cause.

Section  2.  Information about the Mission of Project Gutenberg-tm

Project Gutenberg-tm is synonymous with the free distribution of
electronic works in formats readable by the widest variety of computers
including obsolete, old, middle-aged and new computers.  It exists
because of the efforts of hundreds of volunteers and donations from
people in all walks of life.

Volunteers and financial support to provide volunteers with the
assistance they need are critical to reaching Project Gutenberg-tm's
goals and ensuring that the Project Gutenberg-tm collection will
remain freely available for generations to come.  In 2001, the Project
Gutenberg Literary Archive Foundation was created to provide a secure
and permanent future for Project Gutenberg-tm and future generations.
To learn more about the Project Gutenberg Literary Archive Foundation
and how your efforts and donations can help, see Sections 3 and 4
and the Foundation information page at

Section 3.  Information about the Project Gutenberg Literary Archive

The Project Gutenberg Literary Archive Foundation is a non profit
501(c)(3) educational corporation organized under the laws of the
state of Mississippi and granted tax exempt status by the Internal
Revenue Service.  The Foundation's EIN or federal tax identification
number is 64-6221541.  Contributions to the Project Gutenberg
Literary Archive Foundation are tax deductible to the full extent
permitted by U.S. federal laws and your state's laws.

The Foundation's principal office is located at 4557 Melan Dr. S.
Fairbanks, AK, 99712., but its volunteers and employees are scattered
throughout numerous locations.  Its business office is located at 809
North 1500 West, Salt Lake City, UT 84116, (801) 596-1887.  Email
contact links and up to date contact information can be found at the
Foundation's web site and official page at

For additional contact information:
     Dr. Gregory B. Newby
     Chief Executive and Director

Section 4.  Information about Donations to the Project Gutenberg
Literary Archive Foundation

Project Gutenberg-tm depends upon and cannot survive without wide
spread public support and donations to carry out its mission of
increasing the number of public domain and licensed works that can be
freely distributed in machine readable form accessible by the widest
array of equipment including outdated equipment.  Many small donations
($1 to $5,000) are particularly important to maintaining tax exempt
status with the IRS.

The Foundation is committed to complying with the laws regulating
charities and charitable donations in all 50 states of the United
States.  Compliance requirements are not uniform and it takes a
considerable effort, much paperwork and many fees to meet and keep up
with these requirements.  We do not solicit donations in locations
where we have not received written confirmation of compliance.  To
SEND DONATIONS or determine the status of compliance for any
particular state visit

While we cannot and do not solicit contributions from states where we
have not met the solicitation requirements, we know of no prohibition
against accepting unsolicited donations from donors in such states who
approach us with offers to donate.

International donations are gratefully accepted, but we cannot make
any statements concerning tax treatment of donations received from
outside the United States.  U.S. laws alone swamp our small staff.

Please check the Project Gutenberg Web pages for current donation
methods and addresses.  Donations are accepted in a number of other
ways including checks, online payments and credit card donations.
To donate, please visit:

Section 5.  General Information About Project Gutenberg-tm electronic

Professor Michael S. Hart was the originator of the Project Gutenberg-tm
concept of a library of electronic works that could be freely shared
with anyone.  For forty years, he produced and distributed Project
Gutenberg-tm eBooks with only a loose network of volunteer support.

Project Gutenberg-tm eBooks are often created from several printed
editions, all of which are confirmed as Public Domain in the U.S.
unless a copyright notice is included.  Thus, we do not necessarily
keep eBooks in compliance with any particular paper edition.

Most people start at our Web site which has the main PG search facility:

This Web site includes information about Project Gutenberg-tm,
including how to make donations to the Project Gutenberg Literary
Archive Foundation, how to help produce our new eBooks, and how to
subscribe to our email newsletter to hear about new eBooks.