LILLIAN H. SHUEY,
in Among the Redwoods.
You rode three miles on the flat, two in the leafy and gradually ascending creek-bed of a canyon, a half hour of laboring steepness in the overarching mountain lilac and laurel. There you came to a great rock gateway which seemed the top of the world. * * * Beyond the gateway a lush level canyon into which you plunged as into a bath; then again the laboring trail, up and always up toward the blue California sky, out of the lilacs, and laurels, and redwood chaparral into the manzanita, the Spanish bayonet, the creamy yucca, and the fine angular shale of the upper regions. Beyond the apparent summit you found always other summits yet to be climbed, and all at once, like thrusting your shoulders out of a hatchway, you looked over the top.
STEWART EDWARD WHITE,
in The Mountains.
So fair thou art—so still and
Half hidden in thy granite cup.
From depths of crystal smiling up
As smiles a woman in her sleep!
The pine trees whisper where they lean
Above thy tide; and, mirrored there
The purple peaks their bosoms bare,
Reflected in thy silver sheen.
So fair thou art! And yet there dwells
Within thy sylvan solitudes
A memory which darkling broods
And all thy witchery dispels.
DANIEL S. RICHARDSON,
in Trail Dust.
Donner Lake a pleasure resort! Can you understand for one moment how strange this seems to me? I must be as old as Haggard’s “She,” since I have lived to see our papers make such a statement. It is years since I was there, yet I can feel the cold and hunger and hear the moan of the pines; those grand old trees that used to tell me when a storm was brewing and seemed to be about the only thing there alive, as the snow could not speak. But now that the place is a pleasure resort—the moan of the pines should cease.
VIRGINIA REED MURPHY.
THE LURE OF THE DESERT LAND.
Have you slept in a tent alone—a
Out under the desert sky—
Where a thousand thousand desert miles
All silent ’round you lie?
The dust of the aeons of ages dead,
And the peoples that tramped by!
* * * * *
Have you lain with your face in your hands,
Face down—flat down on your face—and prayed,
While the terrible sandstorm whirled and swirled
In its soundless fury, and hid the world
And quenched the sun in its yellow glare—
Just you and your soul, and nothing there?
If you have, then you know, for you’ve felt its spell,
The lure of the desert land.
And if you have not, then you could not tell—
For you could not understand.