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Phoebe Cary (search for this): chapter 10
er son. She explained that he was in Boston. No matter; they would come in and await his return. But he might be away a week. No matter; they would willingly wait that time for such a pleasure. So in they came. They proved to be Alice and Phoebe Cary, whose earlier poems, which had already preceded them, were filled with dirges and despair; but they were the merriest of housemates, and as the poet luckily returned next day, they stayed as long as they pleased, and were welcome. It is h years after, and addressed to that general friend — and occasional enemy — of all literary people, Rufus Wilmot Griswold, of New York:-- Amesbury, 21st June, 1850. My dear fr. Griswold:--I learn from my friend F. W. Kellogg that Alice and Phoebe Cary, of Ohio, are on their way to the East, and would be glad to see them at my place if they come to Boston. Presuming that thou wilt see them in N. Y. I have taken the liberty to invite them, through thee, to call on me. I have been quite ill
C. G. Gordon (search for this): chapter 10
would add, Elizabeth, thee would not be happy in heaven unless thee could go missionary to the other place, now and then. Quakers, if genuine, usually have rather a predilection for fighters. Garibaldi was one of Whittier's heroes, so was General Gordon, so was young Colonel Shaw; and so was John Bright, who fought with words only. Whittier wrote at his death to Mrs. Fields-- Spring is here to-day, worm, birdful. .... It seems strange that I am alive to welcome her when so many have p of duty, and by the practical common sense of a shrewd man of business. He fought through life like an old knight-errant, but without enthusiasm. He had no personal ideals. I remember once how he remonstrated with me for my admiration for General Gordon. He looked upon that wonderful personality as a wild fighter, a rash adventurer, doing evil that good might come. He could not see him as I saw him, giving his life for humanity, alone and unfriended, in that dreadful Soudan. He did not li
G. D. Robinson (search for this): chapter 10
lity .... He could no more face a mixed company than he could face an audience. It was the lack of touch — of correlation --that seemed to disturb him. Miss Bremer said of him that he could cheerfully confront martyrdom, but shrank from the ordinary requirements of social intercourse .... Later, in 1882, when I was a member of the Republican State Central Committee, I was designated to conduct Mr. Whittier from his rooms in Boston on the morning of the Music Hall convention which put Robinson forward for the defeat of Butler, and I was specially charged to place him in a conspicuous seat near the front of the platform, that all Massachusetts might see that he was with us. By dint of much entreaty and persuasion I finally prevailed. No man was better entitled to a high seat in the party sanhedrim at that time, nor more worthy to be held up as the high priest of Massachusetts Republicanism. But the proceedings were scarcely opened when I found his chair was vacant. He had stole
Robert S. Rantoul (search for this): chapter 10
have frequently gone in at twilight and found him lying on the lounge, watching the flitting shadows, and repeating aloud from some favourite author, generally Scott or Burns. His mood and conversation at such times were particularly delightful. The beautiful poem, Burning Driftwood was doubtless inspired by such experiences. Pickard, II. 745. One of the very best delineations of Whittier by one of those who approached him on the public or semi-public side is that written by the Hon. Robert S. Rantoul of Salem, Mass.:-- Mr. Whittier was self-contained. In the company of persons whom he did not care for — who could not draw him out — his mind seemed to furnish him with almost nothing to say. He had no small talk. Where there was nothing in common he could be as remote and silent as a mountain peak .... For himself, he was transparent in his expressions and he sought the communion of those only who met him on his own ground. Insincerity was incivility .... He could no
B. F. Butler (search for this): chapter 10
a mixed company than he could face an audience. It was the lack of touch — of correlation --that seemed to disturb him. Miss Bremer said of him that he could cheerfully confront martyrdom, but shrank from the ordinary requirements of social intercourse .... Later, in 1882, when I was a member of the Republican State Central Committee, I was designated to conduct Mr. Whittier from his rooms in Boston on the morning of the Music Hall convention which put Robinson forward for the defeat of Butler, and I was specially charged to place him in a conspicuous seat near the front of the platform, that all Massachusetts might see that he was with us. By dint of much entreaty and persuasion I finally prevailed. No man was better entitled to a high seat in the party sanhedrim at that time, nor more worthy to be held up as the high priest of Massachusetts Republicanism. But the proceedings were scarcely opened when I found his chair was vacant. He had stolen away to a hiding-place beside th
William Cowper (search for this): chapter 10
his home life is that drawn by Hayne, the Southern poet, who once visited him. So 'neath the Quaker poet's tranquil roof, From all deep discords of the world aloof, I sit once more and measured converse hold, With him whose nobler thoughts are rhythmic gold; See his deep brows half-puckered in a knot, O'er some hard problem of our mortal lot, Or a dream soft as May winds of the south, Waft a girl's sweetness 'round his firm, set mouth. Or, should he deem wrong threats the public weal, Lo, the whole man seems girt with flashing steel; His glance a sword-thrust and his words of ire, Like thunder tones from some old prophet's lyre. Or by the hearthstone, when the day is done, Mark swiftly lanced a sudden shaft of fun; The short quick laugh, the smartly smitten knees, Are all sure tokens of a mind at ease. God's innocent pensioners in the woodland dim, The fields, the pastures, know and trust in him, And in their love, his lonely heart is blest, Our pure hale-minded Cowper of the West.
ot draw him out — his mind seemed to furnish him with almost nothing to say. He had no small talk. Where there was nothing in common he could be as remote and silent as a mountain peak .... For himself, he was transparent in his expressions and he sought the communion of those only who met him on his own ground. Insincerity was incivility .... He could no more face a mixed company than he could face an audience. It was the lack of touch — of correlation --that seemed to disturb him. Miss Bremer said of him that he could cheerfully confront martyrdom, but shrank from the ordinary requirements of social intercourse .... Later, in 1882, when I was a member of the Republican State Central Committee, I was designated to conduct Mr. Whittier from his rooms in Boston on the morning of the Music Hall convention which put Robinson forward for the defeat of Butler, and I was specially charged to place him in a conspicuous seat near the front of the platform, that all Massachusetts migh
Nehemiah Emerson (search for this): chapter 10
nversations with fellow-authors. For instance, as he was driving one day with Emerson, the latter pointed out a small, unpainted house by the roadside, and said:-- pray for myself. Does thee? said Whittier. What does thee pray for, friend Emerson? Well, replied Emerson, when I first open my eyes upon the morning meadowsEmerson, when I first open my eyes upon the morning meadows, and look out upon the beautiful world, I thank God that I am alive, and that I live so near Boston. In one of their conversations, Mr. Emerson remarked that thMr. Emerson remarked that the world had not yet seen the highest development of manhood. Does thee think so? said Whittier. I suppose thee would admit that Jesus Christ is the highest ld has yet reached the ideals the Christ has set for mankind? No, no, said Emerson: I think not. Then is it not the part of wisdom to be content with what hthem. Whittier had a neighbour whose original remarks he loved to repeat, and Emerson once said, That man ought to read Plato, and offered him a volume through Whit
John Greenleaf Whittier (search for this): chapter 10
this spring and my sister also is an invalid, and we see little company, but I should feel sorry to have the sweet singers of the West so near and not see them. Dost ever come to Boston? I should be very glad to see thee at Amesbury. I have a pleasant and grateful recollection of our acquaintance in N. Y. and Boston. I shall be obliged to thee if thou wilt kindly remember me to Tuckerman. I like his last book exceedingly, and shall notice it soon in the Era. Thine cordially, John G. Whittier. Letters of R. W. Griswold, pp. 266-67. A lady who had been long a neighbour once described Whittier's parlour fire:-- That fire was a perpetual source of pleasure and annoyance to us all. It was an old-fashioned Franklin stove, that smoked on the slightest provocation, and scattered the ashes over the hearth. At the same time it had a habit of throwing out the most charming gleams and shadows, especially if driftwood was being burned. Mr. Whittier was very jealous of any o
Henry T. Tuckerman (search for this): chapter 10
them in N. Y. I have taken the liberty to invite them, through thee, to call on me. I have been quite ill this spring and my sister also is an invalid, and we see little company, but I should feel sorry to have the sweet singers of the West so near and not see them. Dost ever come to Boston? I should be very glad to see thee at Amesbury. I have a pleasant and grateful recollection of our acquaintance in N. Y. and Boston. I shall be obliged to thee if thou wilt kindly remember me to Tuckerman. I like his last book exceedingly, and shall notice it soon in the Era. Thine cordially, John G. Whittier. Letters of R. W. Griswold, pp. 266-67. A lady who had been long a neighbour once described Whittier's parlour fire:-- That fire was a perpetual source of pleasure and annoyance to us all. It was an old-fashioned Franklin stove, that smoked on the slightest provocation, and scattered the ashes over the hearth. At the same time it had a habit of throwing out the most cha
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