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explosive sounds, she listened by the lilac bushes under the returned soldier's window. «Swearin'! Yes; actually swearin' at her, Mis' Acorn, and throwing things-teacups and shoes-with that one arm o' his. And she answerin' just as patient! I never could 'a' believed it o' Cyrus if I had n't heard it with my own ears. And it kind o' shakes my belief that 't is him.»
« Well, I would n't mention it further; it's safe with me; and probably he 's out o' his mind.»
At the end of the second month the soldier, who had never got farther than the armchair on the sunny south porch, took to his bed, and the doctor was called in. When he came away he was stopped nine times by as many women between the door of Patience's house and his own. Each asked two questions: Will he get well?» and «Is he Cyrus Benson? »
To which the doctor replied that he would probably never be any better, and that a man ought to know himself who he was, and he supposed this one did. Upon which it was reported that the doctor said that it was Cyrus Benson.
Mrs. Acorn shared the last vigils with Patience. She would have no one else, and would not have had her had not Mrs. Acorn laid aside her bonnet and declared that she would stay.
«No woman 'd ought t' be left alone at such a time,» said she.
"I never could 'a' got through with it, it seemed to me, if I had n't kep' sayin', (Poor creatur'! he don't know what he 's about, she confided to her husband. «Such langwidge and strikin' at Patience! His sufferin's must 'a' been dretful. And she so gentle! I never could 'a' believed Patience could 'a' been so gentle-mannered. Liftin' his poor head just as if 't was a baby's, and speakin' so tender! "T was a relief when he breathed his last. And she never shed a tear; only said, Poor boy! The Lord have mercy on him!>»>
There was a crowded funeral. Probably there had never taken place in Mantit one of more absorbing and dramatic interest. The doubt concerning the authenticity of the subject a doubt only momentarily quelled by the doctor, whose reply, it was discovered, was capable of more than one interpretation -lent an original piquancy to the occasion. And the doubt was strengthened as the services went on. It was observed that the minister was very general in his remarks and prayer. No direct mention was made of mourners; and of course if it was n't Cyrus,
neither Patience nor anybody else could be regarded as mourners. For all that was said, it might have been anybody's funeral, or nobody's; by which it was evident that the minister was in doubt.
Speculation even found place about the silent form. «Surely that was never Cyrus Benson's nose!» It was surprising to find how little one really knows about his neighbor's nose when it comes to a definite description thereof.
There was an immediate division as to whether Cyrus's was Roman or straight, and two or three were sure that it turned up at the end. And his hair? Cyrus's was black; no, it was brown; but the locks of the sleeper were so scant and so gray that whether brown or black could not be determined. Had it been his right hand that was left, the doubt as to his identity could have been solved, for the middle finger of that hand had been chopped off by an ax; but the left hand was just like any other man's hand.
But upon one thing all agreed: Patience had done her part handsomely. The coffin was of the best black walnut, lined with fine white cashmere, and the handles were silverplated; the robe, too, was of fine white cashmere. Yes, there could be no doubt that, whatever others might think, Patience believed that-but there was no plate, no inscription, no name to tell who slept therein. Did that omission look like certainty on her part? They were again at sea.
He was laid at last in the old graveyard just where it sloped greenly to the small lake, and the autumn maples dropped their scarlet and gold into his grave. It was far from the corner where lay the Bensons and the Hatheways, and again it was asked, Did Patience, or did she not, believe it was Cyrus? She was seen to wipe her eyes as she turned away from the open grave, and would she weep for a stranger and a deceiver? But why had she not put on black? Surely for a promised husband
No one dared to put the question directly to her; but each was consoled therefor by the reflection that certainty would have spoiled half, nay, three fourths, of the interest of the occasion.
Patience went back alone, and sat awhile in the parlor, and felt as though life, like her house, had suddenly grown very empty. And then she went and stood in the silent bedroom, and even took down and surveyed the shabby uniform and cap; and as she did so she muttered to herself something that sounded like «atone.>>
Then she put aside her bonnet, and sat down by the round, light stand in the sittingroom, upon which lay the great old leatherbound family Bible, and opening, read the words, «Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.»>
And so might it not be that, doing to one of the great brotherhood of man, it was done to all, or even to some other one of them in particular? Surely He who knew the heart of man, who had a knowledge of its infirmities, who had Himself suffered, though sinless, surely it would be like Him to open some such way of atonement to the repentant soul. So, vaguely at first, and then with a sense of peace, this thought cleared itself to her understanding.
Peace came soon (the nation's peace), and the boys-those that were left-came home. Life settled back into the old ruts, and Patience went her ways, though changed, it was said, showing less temper, and being kinder, but keeping to herself, and not caring much to see folks. She always carefully tended the grave on the green slope, though the sentimental widow, who had erected a headstone to her husband's memory, with a space left upon it which was to be filled in due time with the name of his «inconsolable relict,» could not be reconciled to Patience's neglect in placing no stone by this grave.
Patience was busy about it one night, digging the plantain from the turf, and watering a rose-bush and the root of pinks she had transplanted thither. It was sundown, and the old grave-digger, unseen by her, was prowling about the yard, soliloquizing upon the many he had put to bed and covered up therein, and thinking that his own retiring hour could not be far distant, and that a quieter, prettier spot could not be found in which to take the last sleep, with the prismatic tints of the evening sky reflected in the placid lake, the breeze humming a gentle lullaby in the pines by the shore, the aromatic scent of sweet-fern, bayberry, and sweetbrier afloat, and saturating all the atmos
phere, when he suddenly came to a full stop. A man was opening the gate.
«Je-rushy!» muttered the grave-digger, falling back behind a tall clump of cinnamon rose-bushes.
The man walked straight toward the spot where Patience was kneeling at work, and stopped within a few paces of her. Though his face was pale, he was no ghost, and he walked with a firm, soldierly step. Patience presently got up, and turning, saw him. The grave-digger, looking intently, observed her pause an instant, and then run toward the man with hands outstretched, and stumbling over the intervening graves. Cyrus, for it was he, caught her hands in his.
«Whose grave is that?» he asked. «O Cyrus, it's a poor man's who wore a uniform, and said he was you; and he was maimed and poor, and-and-I nussed him for your sake; for I thought you were dead, and it would atone. I said it would atone!»
She spoke so wildly that the grave-digger thought she must have gone out of her mind at the sight of Cyrus's unexpected coming, as if it were from the dead; and he thought of going forward, but she spoke again:
<< I spoke cruel to you, Cyrus,» she said; «I spoke cruel to you when you went away. But I've been punished-I've been punished.»
And then he saw that Cyrus put her two hands-not pretty or slender or white hands, but hands brown and hard with labor-into one of his, and patted them with the other, saying:
«Tain't wuth namin', Patience; I never laid it up. There! there!» as he would have done to a baby. For Patience was now sobbing and crying, «Forgive! forgive!»
The grave-digger could hear her where he stood, though he could not, strain his old ears as he might, hear Cyrus's reply; neither could he hear what followed; but at last he heard her say:
«Come, Cyrus, let us go home.» And he watched them as, hand in hand, they passed out of the gate, stepping westward through the afterglow, which of a sudden suffused both earth and sky.
Frank Pope Humphrey.
RECOLLECTIONS AND ANECDOTES OF BÜLOW.
HEN Hans von Bülow, in 1851, at the age of twenty-one, resolved to devote his life entirely to music, he found a large field for desirable reform in which to exercise Liszt, who, previous to 1847, had reaped the laurels of a royal virtuoso, then began his career as conductor at the Royal Opera House in Weimar, and soon found himself surrounded by the best of the young musical talent of the world. His pupils the artists of our generation-he easily indoctrinated with the novel ideas which he brought forward in his own compositions. He began the publication of his symphonic poems, and in 1850 brought out Wagner's «Lohengrin» in Weimar for the first time. This production, under the baton of Liszt, opened the "thirty years' war» between the classical and the new German schools. The offensive struggle was made under great difficulties, the headquarters of Liszt, the general-in-chief, being in Weimar. The contention was between form and freedom; the "classicists » confined their creative acts to well-defined art forms, while the "romanticists» desired to bring out new ideas, to enrich the tone material of their art, and to add to it new means of expressing emotion. The romantic school, however, had within itself the germ of artistic realism. Thus Schubert, whose spirit is essentially romantic, is accounted classic because he merely sought to express the sentiment of the poems he turned into songs, without any effort to make each note conform to the exact shade of feeling expressed by the word to which it was sung. Thus conformity of note to word, the crucial test of the new German school, was instituted by Liszt, whose songs are practically small phrases in recitative form. Liszt further declared war by breaking the laws of formal symmetry in his symphonic poems. In proposing that the only limits to musical form should be the limits which define the poetical idea expressed by the music, he became, with Berlioz, the champion of program music. To obtain new means to express the different emotions, he used new and unusual harmonic combinations. Berlioz, who had visited Ger
many between 1842 and 1845, enlarged the orchestra with new instruments and new tone-coloring. Wagner employed all these innovations in his music-dramas, and became the exponent de facto of the new German school.
Wagner's versatility as a writer soon brought matters to a crisis, and at the same time secured him a host of adherents. Among the Liszt-Wagner forces were many men now well known for originality and talent. Among them we recall Friedrich Nietzsche, professor of classical philology in Basel. Upon the publication of « Parsifal,» however, Nietzsche publicly announced his defection from the cause in a pamphlet called the «Fall of Wagner.» On the other hand, Heinrich Ehrlich (better known in America as the editor of «Tausig's Studies ») contributed a tract on « Wagner's Art and True Christianity.» Richard Pohl, L. Köhler, Franz Müller, Joachim Raff, William Tappert, Heinrich Porges, Otto Lessmann (Bülow's pupil), and Gottlieb Federlein all wrote, analyzed, and explained in tracts, in the columns of the «Allgemeine Deutsche Zeitung,» or in other musical periodicals wherever open to their views. Franz Brendel, who succeeded Schumann in the «Neue Zeitschrift für Musik,» made that paper a kind of official organ for the propagation of the ideas of the young dramatic-musical school, and it was in its pages that Wagner's famous anonymous article, «Das Judenthum in der Musik,» first appeared. The activities of the new propaganda did not stop here. Felix Draeseke wrote a humorous school of harmony in rhyme, while Weitzman actually formulated the laws of the new harmonic development, and reduced the whole to a practical pedagogic basis. Karl Klindworth wrote the piano scores of the Nibelungen Trilogy; Peter Cornelius, poet and musical littérateur, translated many of Liszt's French writings into German; Tausig, whom Weitzman dubbed «the last of the virtuosi,» conducted the works of Wagner, Liszt, and Berlioz in Vienna. The entire movement was full of energy, productivity, and violent rancor. Religion, race, morals, politics, and artistic convictions were inextricably involved in the
mêlée. Such an array of musical genius as the world will hardly see again, intoxicated with the beauty, the liberty, the originality, and the power of the new creative movement, threw itself into it with all the ardor of the artistic nature.
No wonder that a man like Bülow, a thinker, a student educated in the universities of Berlin and Leipsic, did not stand aloof, but took up the cry, «The public needs education, and must have it. I will be your teacher; follow me.» Like Napoleon, he decided to be dictator in the new empire. He wrote, he edited, he gave concerts and recitals, he revised, he founded concert organizations, he published, he brought forward writers and musicians. He invigorated, disciplined, inspired, and, in short, constituted a head center of aggression in the prosecution of the movement to which he adhered. The declaration of war against Wagner in Paris in 1859, Wagner's part in the political conspiracy in Saxony, and his consequent exile, the glorious victories of his operas in the Bavarian capital, and the present recognition of his greatness in Paris, are significant epochs in the struggle. In all this Bülow's success is identified with Wagner's; but in estimating Bülow's life-work, he is seen to be greatest not in his own musical performances, but in what he impressed upon that performance. In him Emerson's saying, «Somewhat resides in the men whose fame has come down to us that begot an expectation that outran all their performance,» is most strongly exemplified. Neither Bülow's piano-playing nor his conducting accounts for the enormous influence that he exercised upon the musical life of his generation. His influence on music was the work less of his musical endowment than of his personality; «that reserved force which acts directly by presence, and without means,» was emphatically his. And behind that force lay his simplicity of aim and his sincerity of conviction. He was first and foremost a teacher. To teach he traveled as concert pianist, and gave recitals in all the principal cities of Europe. His programs were carefully planned to propagate his ideas. To a collector these programs would be treasures of art; every worthy master, known or unknown to the musical world, was represented. What the painter gains from the exhibit of academy and salon, the composer obtains from the concert program of the popular artist. The popularity which more than one modern composer now enjoys is directly traceable to Bülow's introduction of his works. This presentation to the public of new music Bülow persistently
made, for music's sake. He shared with Liszt the habit and principle of working continuously for what he recognized as good.
As pianist, conductor, and writer, Bülow taught and trained his public; but among his many personal pupils, although his lessons were careful, minute, and painstaking in the extreme, not one has achieved undoubted preeminence; while Liszt, who inspired, attracted, encouraged, and never taught, really formed the pianists of the world. Creative genius is a fire that kindles and sustains kindred genius, and such genius Bülow had not; yet his relations with his pupils are a pleasant theme, in sharp contrast to his haughtiness among people of high social rank, and to his short memory of favors received from such noble sources. I like to remember how, in the midst of a brilliant concert in a famous capital, he recalled the name of an old bassoon player in the orchestra, the father of a former pupil; how he hunted the old man up, and sat by him the whole evening in the intervals of the performance, saying kindly things about the son.
But, although Bülow formed no one preeminent pianist, he succeeded in impressing his standard of musicianship upon the whole musical life of Germany, and that standard was exacting. One of his pupils once requested of him an opportunity to play in concert. Bülow looked non-committal, and made no reply. Six months later the applicant, who had meanwhile given up hope of appearing in public, and had been teaching diligently in a conservatory, received a note announcing that, through Bülow's recommendation, he was invited to play exactly five days later in one of the oldest German university towns. Appalled at the prospect, the young man hurried to his patron to explain. «Not ready!» exclaimed Bülow, looking through him as if he did not exist, and then, turning scornfully on his heel, «An artist is always ready.» Stung by his contempt, the youth undertook the concert, slept not during three nights and days of preparation, was successful, and, hastening to return thanks, found that Bülow had already possessed himself of full information, and was humming and playing snatches of the program in high good humor.
Another pupil, on whom he sprang a similar surprise, did not fare so well. Bülow had promised to bring out a concerto (Op. 30) which Friedrich Kiel, his enthusiastic admirer, had dedicated to him. The annual meeting of the Ton-Künstler Verein, to be held at Carlsruhe, furnished the opportunity. Although Kiel belonged to a most conserva
tive classical school, and Bülow was immersed heart and soul in the «music of the future,» the latter threw himself into the study of his friend's composition with such ardor that when, after the manuscript had been in his possession five days, Kiel called, by invitation, to look over the tempi and nuançen, Bülow played the whole from memory, and turned over the manuscript to the composer so that he could accompany him on the second piano. The domestic sorrow which resulted in the breaking up of his home immediately followed. Beside himself from the shock, Bülow was confined to his room by his physician's orders; but in his agony he did not forget Kiel, though playing was now impossible for him. As soon as he could command himself, he wrote to one of his most efficient pupils, offered the young man a check for one hundred thalers for his traveling expenses, and begged him to undertake the concerto. There were now only four days before the concert; the pupil could not prepare Kiel's work in time, and it was omitted from the program. Bülow never forgave the unfortunate pianist, and would have nothing more to do with him.
I have before me a letter of Bülow's, written to a pupil who had disappointed him, which gives a curious insight into his work as a teacher. After complaining that out of every eighteen lessons he loses six, that he cannot compose on lesson days, he adds: «It is not preference for teaching that makes me rob myself of my time; I have talents which suffer greatly from my choice of this profession, and time is very short, especially for an artist who wishes to accomplish anything out of the ordinary. I cannot persuade myself to resign this ambition, though I am obliged to curtail it greatly by using my time for other matters. I have therefore divided my hours in such a way that some days are taken up entirely in giving lessons, others exclusively in private work. Except when small concert tours have interfered, I have always considered myself bound to keep my appointments with my pupils. You, whose capital is the use you make of your time, will understand the justice of my resolution. I am not going to be absurd, and blame you for the lessons you have missed, but I must make other arrangements in future.» Here we have the man scrupulous, industrious, ambitious, and kindly, but devoid of the careless spontaneity of the creative musician. Mendelssohn could beguile a sleepless night by writing a hunting-song; Schubert scrawled his immortal serenade on a wine-house table; Mozart paid a butcher's
bill with a waltz; but Bülow could not collect his thoughts to compose on lesson days.
Bülow had no mercy on himself; he would rob himself of sleep for weeks to do a bit of writing or editing. The story of the tumbler of cold water that Buffon ordered his valet to throw in his face to spoil his morning nap is literally true of Bülow. Under such hydropathic inspiration he actually finished his «Fantasie >> (Op. 17) on the «Ballo in Maschera.»>
It is usual to say that Bülow could not compose; but this is true only so far that his talent for composition was of less importance than his personality. His «Sänger's Fluch» is musical, interesting, and beautiful, but devoid of emotion. The same is true of his «Nirvana.» Musicians enjoy Bülow's compositions in exact proportion to their musical learning. The same must be said of his piano playing. His interpretation was always interesting and polished, accurate even to the smallest details; but there was no spontaneity in it. Schumann he disliked because he could not command the necessary technic to play him, and he could play neither Chopin nor Liszt, because he lacked the fancy required for the one and the abandon necessary to interpret the other. The difference between Liszt's «Don Juan» fantasia, under the fingers of Tausig, or even of D'Albert, and under those of Bülow, discovers the fatal defect in the latter. At the piano Bülow was never free. His fame as a pianist must rest on his playing of Beethoven, especially Op. 106 and Op. 111. Here his resources are exclusively intellectual-discrimination, contrast, construction, and climax. Bülow's mental organization was inflexible. He has been described as a cross between a Bismarck and a Schopenhauer. He was rigid in mind and body. The feline suppleness of muscle characteristic of the born pianist was not his. His technic was obtained and kept up at great physical expense. His well-known saying that if he lost one day's practice he felt it himself, but if he lost three the public knew it, is a confession of the burden he carried. Contrast the career of Paganini, who, during the great concert tour in which he carried the world by storm, never practised a note. He had his skill by nature. Bülow, on the contrary, acquired his virtuosity painfully and late, and in consequence lost it early. To the bodily fatigue and nervous wear occasioned by incessant piano practice must be attributed a great part of his irritability, and ultimately his untimely death. He always said that he began to study two years too late, i. e., at eight years of age instead of six. As he had sufficient execution at fourteen to play Men