happiest man is he who has cultivated to the utmost
the sense of beauty. The man who is able at all times
to find perfect and prolonged satisfaction in the contemplation
of a tree, a field, a flower or a "spear of grass,"
can never be bored save by his fellow-creatures. For
him life is full of variety; every moment comes to him
laden with some unique enjoyment, every hour is crowded
with a multitude of fleeting but exquisite impressions.
If health and a reasonable destiny attend him he cannot
be otherwise than happy; pessimism for him is impossible.
The beautiful is everywhere about us. As a matter of
fact, there is nothing fashioned by nature herself that
is not beautiful, either in itself or in its relation
to its surroundings. You do not need to go to the Rocky
Mountains or the Yosemite Valley in order to find the
beautiful; it is in the next field; it is at your feet.
Wherever there is earth and any live or growing thing
not perverted by the hand of man, there is a study in
beauty that one cannot exhaust. The capacity for the
enjoyment of natural beauty is rare in its perfection.
He whose first impulse on projecting an excursion into
the country is to carry with him a gun or fishing rod
are an encumbrance. Even the scientist—great as
is the enjoyment to be derived from the mere acquisition
of knowledge—does not expreience the illimitable
delight that falls to the lot of the pure loafer who
has accustomed his eye to the perception of every beauty.
To such a man as John Burroughs or Bradford Torrey life
cannot offer any greater good than they have; and this
serene source of satisfaction is in a greater or less
degree within the reach of every man, if he will but
accustom himself to the intelligent use of his senses.
other day I read in one of our papers that many leading
western miners are at present visiting the Canadian
gold mines at Marmora, attracted by the successful working
of the Crawford gold separator, which has rendered these
hitherto unworkable mines payable concerns, and that
Mr. Erastus Wiman controld the North American working
of this machine. Now, I happen to know the particulars
of Mr. Crawford's career, having been brought up in
the same vicinity. It is not many years ago that Mr.
Crawford was a poor boy on a small farm on the shores
of Colpoy's Bay, an inlet of Georgian Bay. Without any
more learning than the common education of a country
school, and not too much of that, he had to depend altogether
upon his remarkable native genius, which struggled with
all odds and through many viscissitudes and reverses.
As a boy he was a born inventor, and early turned his
attention to solving the problem of perpetual motion,
as many a genius has done before him. His first practical
effort was the invention of a flour-bolter, which was
a decided sucess and attracted some attention, but for
some reason was a financial failure. But Mr. Crawford
was not to be daunted. He next turned his attention
to a cotton-seed separator, for which he got $50,000
for the American right alone. Then he tried his genius
at a long-sought-for but vainly desired machine, one
that would decrease the price of separating gold ore
so as to make many mines workable that otherwise would
be valueless. I am not well enough informed on the subject
to statet he exact revolution Mr. Crawford has worked
by his wonderful invention, but sufficient to state
that he has rendered many mines, all over the world,
rich in resources hard to be got at comparatively easy
to work. He owns more patents in different countries
fo the world than any other man. He has enriched himself,
but has done it by his own genius, which has been of
the greatest benefit to others. I understand that a
great company of Englishmen and Americans have the sole
control of Mr. Crawford's wonderful invention and are
engaged in reopening all the mines in many countries
that so far have proved valueless.
AND THE YOUNG GIRL.
the chamber where the young girl lay,
The early light lapsed through the unconscious air,
No sound of all the sounds of life was there,
Only the quiet of death. The breaking day
Brought back the familiar forms in softer grey;
The covered table, and the plain, worn chair;
The low-draped couch before the window, where
The mute blue gentian drooped and pined away.
still—it seemed as if kind death had said:
Before they find you, for a little while
Have rest, here where no rest might be;
Have comfort for pained hands and weary head.
Look up, beloved, see the angels smile!
See the fair threshold of eternity.
literature of the day in America, as far as fiction,
poetry and criticism are concerned, is concentrated
in the magazines. These publications are attracting
to them most of our literary and artistic effort. All
classes of literary people complain that it is only
writing for the magazines that pays. The magazines,
therefore, must be exercising a very strong formative
influence on contemporary American literature. This
influence, I think, we see in the growing disposition
of American writers to confine themselves to brief efforts,
short stories, short poems and the like, and to aim
at artistic perfection rather than free, spontaneous
expression. The influence of the magazine in this and
some other respects is, I think, decidedly harmful.
They are avowedly published for the benefit of the average
educated reader and the average educated reader does
not desire anything very original, unless, indeed, it
have the good fortune to retouch in a particular way
some common chord of feeling. The magazines therefore
do not look for original work, but for work of a high
order of excellence in veins which editors understand
to be popular with the mass of the better reading public.
The man, then, who undertakes to supply the magazines
must begin by sacrificing originality, and he must cultivate
a certain sort of thing. That sort of thing he will
soon learn by reading the magazines. For a nation of
65,000,000 the number of really original writers in
the United States is extraordinarily small, and, though
this result is owing to various causes, it seems to
me that the magazines have a good deal to do with it.
The man who desires to develop an original literary
gift had better beware of writing "for" the
magazines. Let him sell his work to the magazines after
he has written it, if he can; but let him never set
to work beforehand with the purpose of writing something
for a magazine. If he once make a custom of doing that
he is done for.