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It knew not that its worth and beauty lay
Its fragrance widened through the summer air;
My thought goes back to that first Christmas day And the good gardener thought no wreath com
When the young mother in the manger lay,
Weary and pale, but full of pride and joy,
Ah, sister Mary, time and place are strange,
That through this life a glorious light may shine
We know not how God's poets, prophets, come;
The thoughts that filled your heart we also know.
NOTHING BUT LEAVES.
THERE stood a young plant in a garden fair, Where the spring sunshine was most fair and bright.
The moist earth nourished it; the breathing air Took from its folded leaves a fragrance rare, And coming summer seemed one long delight. It felt the beauty of all outward things;
Rejoiced in sun and breeze with grateful heart. Yet thought, "My greatest joy the summer brings, When from green buds unsheathing their bright wings
The clustered blossom from my stem shall start.”
Until a spray of leaves so wondrous sweet
Was twined among the flowers, however fair.
'T was loved and sought and prized the country through,
And one among whose bridal flowers it lay The stem from out the fading roses drew, Planted, and cared for it, until it grew
A living memory of her wedding-day.
And sometimes hearts oppressed with loss and grief
A sudden comfort from its presence drew. It seemed a message sent to them; as if There came a whisper from each rustling leaf, "Shall he not, therefore, much more care for you?" At last, when the flowers had closed their eyes, To its long rest it lay down thankfully, Thinking, "Another summer will arise; Perhaps beneath its soft and sunny skies The flower of my life I yet shall see.”
THE KING'S DAUGHTER.
SHE wears no jewels upon hand or brow;
No badge by which she may be known of men. But though she walk in plain attire now, She is a daughter of the King; and when Her Father calls her at his throne to wait, She will be clothed as doth befit her state.
Her Father sent her in his land to dwell,
Giving to her a work which must be done. And since the King loves all his people well,
Therefore, she, too, cares for them every one. Thus when she stoops to lift from want or sin, The brighter shines her royalty therein. She walks erect through dangers manifold, While many sink and fail on either hand. She dreads not summer's heat nor winter's cold, For both are subject to the King's command.
She need not be afraid of anything,
Even when the angel comes that men call Death,
For though the land she dwells in is most fair,
For that imperial palace whence she came.
INTO a city street,
It seemed that no pure thing
Its whiteness here would ever dare to bring;
Here, too, a little child
Played with the drifts now blackened and defiled, And with his rosy hands, in earnest play, Scraped the dark crust away.
Checking my hurried pace,
To note the busy hands and eager face,
Then, through a broken pane,
A woman's voice summoned him in again, With softened mother-tones, that half excused The unclean words she used.
And as I lingered near,
His baby accents fell upon my ear:
"See, I can make the snow again for you All clean and white and new."
Ah, surely, God knows best.
Our sight is short; faith trusts to him the rest. Sometimes we know he gives to human hands To work out his commands.
Perhaps he holds apart
By baby fingers, in that mother's heart,
One fair clean spot that yet shall spread and grow, Till all be white as snow.
ROWLAND B. MAHANY.
OWLAND BLENNERHASSETT MAHANY,
R the subject of the present sketch, was born in
Buffalo, 1864, Sept. 28. He was educated in the public schools of that city and was graduated from the Central or High School with highest honors in 1881. In 1882 he matriculated at Hobart College and remained two years, during which he stood at the head of his class. He entered Harvard College in 1884 and was one of the "Detur" prize men of his freshman year; secretary and treasurer, and three times vicepresident of the Harvard Union (the University Debating Club); vice-president and president of St. Paul's Society, the Episcopalian Organization of Harvard College; elected in 1887 to the Phi Beta Kappa Society in the first eight of a class of 238 members; first marshal of the Phi Beta Kappa in the same year; Boylston Prize man,1887 and 1888such are some of the distinctions of his college course.
He was graduated, 1888 (Summa Cum Laude), with honors and double honorable mention in History, and honorable mention in Latin.
Immediately after graduation he was chosen poet by the Ninth Veteran Regiment of New York Volunteers, at the dedication of their monument at Gettysburg, July 1, 1888, the occasion of the celebration of the Quarter Centenary of the battle.
Mr. Mahany owes his attainment of a college course largely to his own efforts, will and perseverance. His success in this respect, however, he attributes to the influence and encouragement of his mother. His ultimate ambition is the law, but it is one which many of his friends will begrudge his gratifying. Gifted with keen poetic sensibility, refined taste, an exquisite poetic diction and a rare discrimination in the use of language, he shows in the translations from German, Latin and Greek poets which he has thus far attempted a potency and power of expression, an exactness and skill in the rendition of poetic thought which remind one of Longfellow's and Bayard Taylor's efforts in this direction. Nothing he has yet produced indicates the power of sustained effort; but the early songs of the real poetic nature are chiefly lyric, and such are Mr. Mahany's. The poetic gift is all too rare to be made a slave in the trammels of the law; and while the pecuniary rewards of a literary life are seldom munificent, it yields rich returns in what are the substantial triumphs of life-golden opinions of those, select though few, whom the soul prizes. Mr. Mahany we believe will yet find his way to the literary life, resulting in renown to himself and abiding pleasure to his friends, many of whom believe in his future as one of unusual brilliancy and success. J. F. G.
COME, Sorrow, smooth my brow and kiss my lips,
E'en though on evening wings the Real hath fled.
And call thee steadfast friend, and love thee well,
TO THE WIND FLOWER.
SWEET, Winsome flower that decks the wold
Or hast thou wakened at the song
The Redbreast trills, as, bold and strong,
Nay, soft as is thy perfume thrown,
Thou bloomest when the winds have blown,
That we may know when storms are rife,
Thus thou within this tangled dell,
Like some fair maid with face demure,
With grace serene.
Sure, blest, sweet flower, is lot of thine, And doubly blest compared with mine; Thou seest content each sun decline, Nor askest why;
I dumbly watch youth's rosy years,
But e'en upon thy tender leaf,
Yet oft what seemeth gruesome ill,
LOVE IMPRISONED. LOVE offended me one day With his roguish, teasing play, So I took the culprit fair, And, despite his tearful prayer, In a dungeon, cold and bare, Of my heart immured him.
Round his prison door I placed
Till his sorrow cured him.
Then I sternly went away;
TO A LOVED ONE.
TIME, on jocund wing, speeds fast With the treasures of the past; Love alone defies his will,Mother, thou art with me still.
Sweet the dreams that round thee clung,
Now ambition's earthly fire Purer glows in faith's desire, That our parting may but mean A few, rushing years between.