,” ’ as conveying more sense of shaping imagination than any other, while ‘Evangeline’ would, of course, command the majority of votes among his longer poems.
In some cases, as in Whitman
's ‘My Captain,’ the high-water mark may have been attained precisely at the moment when the poet departed from his theory and confined himself most nearly to the laws he was wont to spurn—in this case, by coming nearest to a regularity of rhythm.
The praise generally bestowed on the admirable selections in the ‘Library of American Literature,’ by Mr. Stedman
and Miss Hutchinson
, is a proof that there is a certain consensus of opinion on this subject.
Had they left out Austin
's ‘Peter Rugg
,’ or Hale
's ‘A Man Without a Country,’ there would have been a general feeling of discontent.
It would have been curious to see if, had these editors been forced by public opinion to put in something of their own, they would have inserted what others would regard as their high-water mark.
I should have predicted that it would be so; and that this would be, in Stedman
's case, the stanzas beginning—
Thou art mine; thou hast given thy word,