the last verse, which some profane critic compared to a tin kettle of moralizing, tied to the legs of the flying bird.
's poems had almost always some such appendage, and he used to regret in later life that he had not earlier been contented to leave his moral for the reader to draw, or in other words, to lop off habitually the last verse of each poem.
Apart from this there was a marked superiority, even on the didactic side, in Longfellow
's moralizing as compared with Bryant
's. There is no light or joy in the ‘Thanatopsis;’ but Longfellow
, like Whittier
, was always hopeful.
It was not alone that he preached, as an eminent British critic once said to me, ‘a safe piety,’ but his religious impulse was serene and even joyous, and this under the pressure of the deepest personal sorrows.
It is also to be observed that Longfellow
wrote in this same number of ‘The North American Review’ (July, 1837) another paper which was prophetic with regard to prose style, as was the Hawthorne essay in respect to thought.
It was a review of Tegner
's ‘Frithiof's Saga’ which showed a power of description, brought to bear on Swedish
life and scenery, which he really never quite attained in ‘Hyperion,’ because it was there sometimes vitiated by a slightly false note.
A portion of it was used afterwards as a