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(Continued from Page 200)
In 1907 Edwin Markham had entered again and again by the letter route into my life. I had seen him only once, in 1896. Now I was bent on writing literary impressions after the plan of Stoddard. So when "Virgilia," and "The Homing Heart" (now entitled. "The Crowning Hour") appeared in an Eastern magazine, and as I had an important manuscript of Lincoln, a ready theme was in hand.
I had (I thought I had) an important Markham manuscript. It had come to me with some miscellaneous papers. It was a hastily sketched copy of "Lincoln,' many of the lines incomplete. I believed I had a first hastily-written copy. I therefore took it as my "lead" and pointed out it illustrated the fiery rapidity with which the mind of Markham worked. There it was sketched roughly to the very last line. It threw, I thought, a great light on Markham's power. It was a hit; an interesting dis
But the more important part of my comment referred to "Virgilia" and its companion poem. Here was a poem of soul, the human soul from its earliest tracings, before the world was; from its secret star. Capped with the "Crowning Hour;" a dip into the future; where all the troublous sorrows of earth dwellers are to be healed.
Here was the type-man sorrowing because of lost love; but finding repentence in earth-service; forgetting his own grief in the burdens of others. It was a new treatment of Evelyn Hope, of "Locksley Hall," of "Maud," of a "Dove of St. Mark," a glorified "Annabel Lee." I did not say all these things in my impression. I have since thought much about them, hence
But I have written Overland lore about Edwin Markham again in 1915. In this piece there is much biography and some criticism. And then a full page in the Oakland Tribune. Both the lovers of me and of the Hoe-Poet will want to look through these accounts, when they consider the great poet's recent ovation of seventeen April days in Central California, for over forty thousand in that short period listened to his masterly readings and the presentation of his poetic dreams and optimistic views of the race's future.
I therefore now must content myself with telling my readers that this busy poet, this lyric master of the social dream, this wandering prophet of hope for the human soul, has written as much if not more poetry in the last decade than in the first decades of his career. A multitude of short lyrics have come from his
fancy; and these along with longer poems of enduring significance: "An Ode of Peace," "An Ode on the Hundredth Anniversary of the Bunker Hill Monument," and extended prize-winning poem on Edgar Allen Poe; "The Ballad of the Gallows-Bird," and "The Songs of the Divine Woman," as well as "The Lincoln Lyrics." Altogether this a noble and notable work for many years between 1860 and 1875; noble when we know it is interspersed with a stupendous English-American Anthology of seventeen volumes. Glory be unto you, Edwin Markham!
But my postscript must come. crudescence of interest in the poetic life of Joaquin Miller. In the Craftsman, the Call, the Oakland Tribune and the Overland, I have recited the main features of the life of a stirring Miller. Those who think he has no place in English literature have forgotten to reckon with the young Americans who know by heart his lyrical stanzas, "Columbus," "The Fortunate Isles," the "Stanza on Byron and Burns,' Carson's Ride," his "Dove of St. Mark," "For Those Who Fail." This is supplemented by his long list of prose: "Life Among the Modocs," an Indian romance of power and unexcelled beauty, "The Building of the City Beautiful,' and "The Danites." I have forty books in my Miller collection.
The four hundredth anniversary of the discovery of America celebrated in 1892 in Chicago has now no living poem in its honor save Joaquin Miller's "Columbus." Nor shall we forget the dashing and virile story, "The Arizonan, all England gloried in in the seventies!
The young and budding Joaquin had no show in California when he came to San Francisco in 1870. Bret Harte neglected him; Miss Coolbrith showered him with faint praise and a touch of ridicule, and Charlie Stoddard smiled.
London discovered him.
I am writing this envoi to the things I have said to tell everybody I do not pretend this a complete roll-call of California poets. I have touched upon not quite all I have written about in the Overland, The California Poet of the Desert waste places I have remembered but I must not treat of her in an evidently hasty review. All this is said that my particular people of the Edwin Markham Chapter of the London Poetry Society as well as a thousand other aspirants to verse writing may have a glimpse of how the great poets write and think.
F IT could be your soul were clean,
And you have lived a life supreme
If now, at last, twixt God and you
She stood and His Own Light shone through
So crystal clear her soul you saw
Would you be filled with love and awe?
ANOTHER Leaf from off the Tree of Time
fallen, and lies prone
Upon the bosom of the earthen Past
There sent to rot with other Leaves, late fall'n,
And rain of solvent Tears,
And make more rich the Soil (we can but hope)
To birth the budding of a better Day
When Time shall leaf again.
"Tis night, the mystic gap 'twixt Was and Will,
When Things-That-Were, as ghosts, walk bold about,
And hold convention with the shades unborn
Of coming Things-To-Be.
And so the Future, foretaught by the Past,
And bring forth fruitage-Joys distilled in Tears-
And yet, mayhap, the fertilizing Leaf
May add some largesse to the pleasing Sweet,
And so, escheat the Bitter. If so be,
Then Life is well and Time is justified.
-PHILMER A. SAMPLE.
HOTEL MARK HOPKINS San Francisco
Poets Who Contribute
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Henry Morton Robinson
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When at the Knees of the Gods
(Continued from Page 202)
tickets, set aside for the purpose, were disposed of.
There was the grant of $10,000 from the city. $10,000 had already been promised from subscribers. $15,000 was yet to be raised from the people. And within a limited period!
And so the new leader with inborn faith and courage, and with a cohort of enthusiastic workers, approached an incredulous public for the purchase of season books, without any definite data other than the price of the tickets they had set out to sell.
The San Francisco Symphony Orchestra was to give a series of summer concerts under the leadership of wellknown conductors at the subscriber's fee of 50 cents a concert-(that, they fervently hoped, and prayed and believed). And the concerts were to take place sometime in June, July and August. No, they were not quite positive about the number of concerts or the dates. And the conductors? Who were they to be? Well, they were not quite positive about them, either. Probably, Gabrilowitsch, and Sokoloff, and Alfred Hertz, and a few more "probablies" were added to the category..
In the meantime, Mrs. Birmingham, with the fortitude one might expect of her, was calling up her friends from her sickbed, selling tickets over a phone, that of necessity, the nurse held for her.
And the San Francisco daily newspapers had been running, gratis, San Francisco Summer Symphony subscription coupons, about the size (regular) of an envelope, several times a week!
And so with the faith that can move mountains, that little band of apostles, converted an unbelieving public to a movement that was an educational campaign in the best sense of the word. A movement to bring to the people, the best music procurable at the lowest possible cost.
And they raised from individual sub
scribers, the $15,000! A fact that should be recorded among modern mir
And the concerts were given. Six of them. And Ossip Gabrilowitsch conducted, and Nicolai Sokoloff, and Alfred Hertz, and Gaetano Merola, and Alfred Hurtgen and Giulio Minetti.
And 50,000 people attended. Most of them novitiates before the shrine of genius! They were music-hungry, those people. Not symphonically "deaf", or indifferent as was once supposed. Music was latent within them, waiting to be awakened. Workers throughout the
day, the greater percentage of them, it would have been impossible for them to have attended the winter symphony which, with the exception of the wonderful civic "pops", gives its concerts in the day time, and in a local theatre where the capacity of the house is limited.
And, so it happened, that an idealist's dream came true, with the help of a people, a city government, and a local press!
UMMER SYMPHONY has now
become a permanent institution. The people want it. That is enough. The signal achievement of last year yielded a surplus of nearly $5,000 at the end of the season.
There was nothing tentative about the plans this year. The orchestra was engaged, the dates agreed upon and the conductors under contract before the comprehensive plans of the season were announced.
The city fathers have again registered their approval with a second annual grant of $10,000-thanks to the initiative of Thomas F. Boyle, and the Board of Supervisors-and have pledged their continued support throughout the years.
The daily press has more than repeated its good work of last year. Its generosity has been two-fold.
Mrs. Leonard Wood, heading the Subscription Committee as chairman, and Mrs. Lillian Birmingham as vicechairman, with a few faithful followers, have set forth to win the unanimous support of a music-loving public. And if past records count for anything, these indefatigable workers will raise the specified "thousands" within a definite period.
This season will assume larger proportions. An extra concert has been added to the ten originally planned, to be given on consecutive Tuesday evenings at the Civic Auditorium, during June, July and August. The San Francisco Summer Symphony Association is offering a musical treat unparalleled in the history of San Francisco, in bringing to the people this summer, at the subscriber's fee of 50 cents a concert, a series of eleven concerts by the entire personnel of the San Francisco Symphony Orchestra under the leadership of such distinguished conductors as Bruno Walter, Ossip Gabrilowitsch, Emil Oberhoffer, Vladimir Shavitch, Willem van Hoogstraten, Alfred Hertz, Mishel Piastro and Dr. Hans Leschke.
A Modern Endymionne
(Continued from Page 206)
disproves, but the knowing and becom- him turn against me at the least sugges
AMIDST such happiness how could
sadness possibly overtake me?
And yet, in our ecstacies, strangely enough, nothing could enable me to find my Wooden-Man again. Something had escaped my effort at total beauty for him. Some part of himself . . . mine . . . never possible to be mine, something of his own essence revealed itself as imperfect. I had not observed it during my work . . now I suffered at not being able to find a remedy for it. I had embellished the form, aroused the heart, but I had forgotten the mind. . . now I dared not undo anything; he loved himself in me; he would never forgive me for not finding him entirely. flawless.
To have molded the flesh . . . awakened the heart, was an enormous danger; that imperfection lay within my work of creation . . . "the heel of Achilles." If I could not repair it, the whole structure could be condemned. In consequence I began to fear lest I lose him; the torture of dread slowly consumed me, for should he leave me now he would carry away my own life.
This cowardly fear prevented me from shattering the amorous ties that held us by acquainting him with what was evidently incomplete in him; frantic dread of disturbing the delightful moments they afforded us made me blind myself to things as they were. Besides, his pride, now at its height, would make
tion of anything imperfect in him.
Secretly I looked on him in despair; he did not suspect it, and yet, with each embrace I suffered increasing distress
as though we had reached the end. What would be the climax of our love? . . . I knew that through this failure of mine his love would not prove eternal I knew that I should be the last to love. . . .
Could I not change this being? Could I not build in him a mind so strong and high that he would forget all the world but me?
Ah, Gods, forgive . . . I know that here I encroach upon your sacred domain, but I wanted to keep the love that you yourselves had imparted to me. I could not allow him to go forth into the world without the protection of a great knowledge! With that faultless form, with his possibilities of love enhanced by my pure love, he would become the prey of all the vampires, of all women's wiles. I trembled. Had I, myself, built the very instrument of my sorrows?
At this hour he did not as yet dream of it. Other women did not interest him; he was entirely absorbed in me; I alone was suffering at not finding between us the communion of mind as strong as that of heart and body. The tenderest words, the most beautiful image suited to an appropriate gesture had no value for him. He was deaf to everything that was not of himself . . he did not comprehend . . . and I wanted him to comprehend.. It seemed to me that this was the only way for him to fathom my fathomless love . . . and that then all else would appear pale and lifeless before it.
Oh! to render him conscious of the immortal Love!
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I undertook to open his mind. What artifice I was forced to employ to reach his mind! Duplicities, not false in themselves, but which were necessary to gain entrance to that closed temple. Let it be understood that the brain does not receive knowledge through hammerstrokes, but through ideas projected from the source of power upon tranquil, undisturbed waves, in which they can take up their abode and germinate.
This would have been an impossibility for me had I not had Love to aid
Except for those endowed with the gift of intuition sufficiently powerful to clothe them in their proper atmosphere, mere words and suggestions are meaningless and flat. It was not possible for me to communicate to him this flaming desire of my mind without coming into contact with the chill irony of his eyes or the arrogance of his smile, but, having Love with me, I inflated the rebellious spirit of my Wooden-Man with Art and Beauty.
All that had appeared abstract and vague now became simple to him as his very life; and I, like a poet at the height of his ecstacy, receiving the harmonious return of an echo, suddenly received back from him the very words I had taught him. My enchanted ears overflowed with sounds like the immortal symphonies the sweet songs of all the poets, past, present and future. We were now as much one in mind as we were in hearts and bodies; hearts led beyond the limits of physical existence, and minds in turn transcended the realms of hearts . . . we realized our Eternity.
(Continued Next Month)
THE CHRISOPHRASE KING (Continued from Page 208) scanned the road and saw Walter Humphrey whirring along in the direction of his domicile. He was in no hurry to meet the young lawyer - for he well knew the import of that young man's mission to the Harkens ranch. He was not prepared to lease the ranch for another year, nor was he ready nor financially able to move to another place. Nevertheless he went down the hill and met William Harkens' agent.
"Well, Lenard, what have you decided to do?" inquired the attorney.
"Not anything, unless it's to go into partnership with the squirrels and get a living out of the other farmers," replied Len.
"Want to say here another year, don't
"Don't want to but can't get away -not yet. Don't see as I can stay either."
The lawyer laughed.
"Well, Len, you've had two years of bad luck, so I'll not be hard on you. But let me have your decision in a few days," and the attorney entered his car and started his motor.
After the departure of Walter Humphrey Len suddenly decided to go to town, see Banker Jessup of the Farmers' Bank and put a proposition up to him to advance the money required to secure the Harkens ranch for another
An hour later he left the presence of Banker Jessup with a crestfallen countenance. The hopelessness that had enveloped him of late had become intensified into a sort of desperation. He was therefore ready for almost anything to secure to his family the necessities of life that now appeared to be receding beyond their grasp.
He was passing the jewelry store of his friend Harvey James. He entered the store and stuck the green stones, he had found on Harkens Hill under the nose of the jeweler with the question:
"What kind of rocks are these, Harvey?"
Harvey James gazed at the two specimens before him with the air of an expert mineralogist. His eyes glisted in admiration.
"You never got those stones in this country," he said, glancing up sharply at Len.
"Well-what are they?" insisted Len. "There's mighty few of those stones ever been found in the United Statesand I never heard of any being found in California," announced the jeweler.
"Are they valuable?"
"If you had a ledge of that beautiful stuff your fortune would be made right quick," declared Harvey.
"That sounds good. But you haven't told me what its name is yet." "Chrisoprase."
It must have been a half-breed Dutchman and Irishman that named that stone," commented Len.
Len went straightway to Humphrey's office.
"I've decided to stay on the Harkens place," he announced. "That is, if I can make terms with you."
"What kind of terms?"
"Well, I'll buy the place if you'll give an option on it for ninety days." "Certainly-go ahead."
"I want the option in writing." "Isn't my word as good as my bond?" "If anyone besides a lawyer should ask