Gifts of Genius eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 195 pages of information about Gifts of Genius.

    Shall I less patience have than Thou, who know
    That Thou revisit’st all who wait for Thee,
    Nor only fill’st the unsounded depths below
    But dost refresh with measured overflow
    The rifts where unregarded mosses be?

    The drooping sea-weed hears, in night abyssed,
    Far and more far the waves’ receding shocks,
    Nor doubts, through all the darkness and the mist
    That the pale shepherdess will keep her tryst,
    And shoreward lead once more her foam-fleeced flocks.

    For the same wave that laps the Carib shore
    With momentary curves of pearl and gold,
    Goes hurrying thence to gladden with its roar
    The lorn shells camped on rocks of Labrador,
    By love divine on that glad errand rolled.

    And, though Thy healing waters far withdraw,
    I, too, can wait and feed on hopes of Thee,
    And of the dear recurrence of thy Law,
    Sure that the parting grace which morning saw,
    Abides its time to come in search of me.



“Hope, by the ancients, was drawn in the form of a sweet and
beautiful child, standing upon tiptoes, and a trefoil or
three-leaved grass in her hand.”

         Citation from old Peacham in Dr. Johnson’s Dictionary.

Three names, clustered together in more than one marked association, have a pleasant fragrance in English literature.  A triple-leaved clover in a field thickly studded with floral beauties, the modest merits of HERBERT, VAUGHAN and CRASHAW

“Smell sweet and blossom in the dust”—­

endeared to us not merely by the claim of intellect, but by the warmer appeal to the heart, of kindred sympathy and suffering.  True poets, they have placed in their spiritual alembic the common woes and sorrows of life, and extracted from them “by force of their so potent art,” a cordial for the race.

Has it ever occurred to the reader to reflect how much the world owes to the poets in the alleviation of sorrow?  It is much to hear the simple voice of sympathy in its plainest utterances from the companions around us; it is something to listen to the same burden from the good of former generations, as the universal experience of humanity; but we owe the greatest debt to those who by the graces of intellect and the pains of a profounder passion, have triumphed over affliction, and given eloquence to sorrow.

There is a common phrase, which some poet must first have invented—­“the luxury of woe.”  Poets certainly have found their most constant themes in suffering.  When the late Edgar Poe, who prided himself on reducing literature to an art, sat down to write a poem which should attain the height of popularity, he said sorrow must be its theme, and wrote “The Raven.”  Tragedy will always have a deeper hold upon the public than comedy; it

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Gifts of Genius from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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