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Or if a leaf in loving leaned too far
And oft she kissed his throat all full of song-
So went the hours until one morn she rose
"He is not lost,” the man said with a smile,
She looked and saw a youth upon the path,
Quick to her side he came with joyous step
But as he stood, the man soft murmuring
But when the night was still the woman went
And from its perfumed hollow quick she brought
“Oh, little child that I shall see no more.”
Dora Sigerson Shorter. Longman's Magazine.
A HEBREW “JOURNAL INTIME.”
The world has almost always ac- also I had great possessions of great knowledged the fascination of any and small cattle above all that were in writer who could take it completely Jerusalem before me: I gathered me into his confidence. For the sake of also silver and gold, and the peculiar candor men will forgive almost any- treasure of kings and of the provinces: thing, so intense is the natural desire I gat me men singers and women singto analyze the human heart. It is the ers, and the delights of the sons of story of a man's thoughts, not his acts, men, as musical instruments, and that that we all want to know; and it is of all sorts. So I was great." Such just this story which so few men have was the home of a rich Oriental when power to tell. Perhaps it was never we English were savages. It is posbetter told than two thousand three sibly not so very unlike the home of a hundred years ago,—the date assigned millionaire of to-day. by the latest Hebrew scholars to the Book of Ecclesiastes. We know what In the year 400 B.C., as in 1903 A.D., the writer thought about life and about “the eye is not satisfied with seeing, death, about the poor and the rich, nor the ear filled with hearing,” and about men and about women; how the the master of all these delightful poseternal problems of religion tortured sessions finds them altogether vanity. his spirit in his youth, and what con- Still cruder methods of obtaining hapclusion he came to in his old age. His piness he tries. “I sought in mine conviction that there is nothing new heart to give myself unto wine," and under the sun is strangely illustrated "to lay hold on folly'; but in license, before our eyes as we read his work as in luxury, he finds only vexation of to-day. The truth is the one thing that spirit. A very modern virtue distracts keeps fresh. Any affectation is like a his mind from his enjoyments.
He fly in the ointment. The “Sorrows of cannot get rid of the sense of pity. Werther" are more stale now than On the side of the oppressors is power, those of the rich Jew who far away in and the poor have no comforter. The another age wrote a journal intime. sight of the “evil work” of these op
The writer describes his outward pressors maddens him. He would glad. state vividly and concisely. It is mere- ly help the downtrodden. He despises ly the gorgeous background against those who suffer the pangs of compaswhich he desires to show his inward sion and do nothing to alleviate suffer. misery. He is a very rich man, able, ing,—the people who sit still and eat accomplished, probably of Royal blood. their hearts out. "The fool foldeth his “Whatsoever mine eyes desired,” he hands together, and eateth his own tells us, "I kept not from them.” “I flesh," he exclaims. Yet he himself made me great works; I builded me cannot see what to do. Prosperity does houses; I planted me vineyards: I made not solve the question of the residuum. me gardens and orchards, and I plant. “When goods increase, they are ined trees in them of all kinds of fruits: creased that eat them"; and he feels, I made me pools of water, to water moreover, that the worth of all action therewith the wood that bringeth forth is brought down by the constant mentrees: I got me servants and maidens, ace of death. Philanthropist and pauand had servants born in my house; per both perish together. The fear of annihilation has a strong hold on was I then more wise ?" Diametri. him, and paralyzes him at every turn. cally opposed sentiments do not startle In another mood the question of pov- the reader in these pages. Every man erty appears to him in a fairer light. who has the heart to note down the inHe envies the sweet sleep of the labor- cidents of his inner life must register ing man. The dignity of agriculture contradictions. His reason and his gilds the sordid side of toil. “The conviction are continually at variance. profit of the earth is for all,” he re- Consistency belongs to self-suppression flects; "the king himself is served by rather than to self-revelation. “Though the field." There are points at which a sinner do evil an hundred times, and the life of the laboring classes com- his days be prolonged,” we find this pares favorably with that of his own. philosopher declaring, "yet surely I Evidently he has been impressed by know that it shall be well with them the serenity and patience of the poor that fear God.” Within a page he in the face of suffering and death, argues that "there is no better thing while the rich man "hath much sorrow under the sun, than to eat, and to and wrath with his sickness." Again, drink, and to be merry," because “there with the strange moral insight which be just men, unto whom it happeneth belongs to his race, and remains with according to the work of the wicked; its sons however earthy they may be- again, there be wicked men, to whom come, he perceives that the power to it happeneth according to the work of oppress is hardly a benefit. It is one the righteous.” With cynical precision of the evils which he sees under the he declares that he has never met a sun that "one man ruleth over another really good woman, and seldom a really to his own hurt.” A great man may good man. “Counting one by one, to live in bondage to a tyrannical temper. find out the account: which yet my soul "Better," he says, “is a poor and a seeketh, but I find not: one man among wise child than an old and foolish king a thousand have I found; but a woman who will no more be admonished. For among all those have I not found.” out of prison he cometh to reign.” In- Then with a sudden revulsion of feelquisitorial power is to be eschewed by ing: “Lo, this only have I found, that those who seek happiness. “Take no God hath made man upright; but they heed unto all words that are spoken," have sought out many inventions." he writes; “lest thou hear thy servant Continually he asserts the Epicurean curse thee: for oftentimes also thine doctrine. Life is so short. He will own heart knoweth that thou thyself live for enjoyment. But as continually likewise hast cursed others."
“the spirit of man that goeth upward” Being a Jew, intellectual pleasures breaks through his determination, and are exceedingly keen to him, and he is makes him contradict himself. not without intellectual arrogance. Per- In a search after wisdom no Jew haps with knowledge will come satis- could forget religion. AS was inevi. faction. “I applied my heart to know, table to a man of his type, the ordi. and to search, and to seek out wisdom, nary religious services of his day failed and the reason of things”; but happi- to satisfy this ancient writer. The ness still eludes him, and impossibility ceremonial of the Temple repels him. of philosophic assurance and the ab- No wise man has ever despised, howsolute certainty of death make him ever, the reading of the Scriptures. give up the pursuit. “Then said I in “Be more ready to hear, than to give my heart, As it happeneth to the fool, the sacrifice of fools,” he says to himso it happeneth even to me; and why self. “God is in heaven, and thou upon
earth: therefore let thy words be few." fore, “in the morning, sow thy seed, Why should men elaborate their igno- and in the evening withhold not thine rance? he seems to wonder. “For a band: for thou knowest not whether dream cometh through the multitude shall prosper, either this or that, or of business; and a fool's voice is known whether they both shall be alike good.” by multitude of words." Still, he does As the time approaches when the not call in question the existence of pitcher shall "be broken at the founthe Deity. “In the multitude of dreams tain,” and “the spirit shall return unto and many words," he reflects, "there God who gave it," the terror of death are also divers vanities; but fear thou seems to leave him, and out of the God.”
wearing sense of responsibility he has Towards the end of the book there is never wholly shaken off arises a hope less reasoning and more giving in to of a future life. “God shall bring convictions. The writer is mentally every work into judgment, with every tired out. He sees that this ceaseless secret thing," he concludes, and we wondering and anxiety, this living in feel that he would rather wake to the presence of death, will tie his judgment than sleep for ever. hands and make his life absolutely bar- Did this man really live so long ago? ren, He determines to cease speculat- It seems impossible. The doubts and ing and to turn his face away from discontents he endured, the problems his last end. It is the only way, he and possibilities he discussed, are so realizes, to accomplish anything. He exactly like our own. We are
conbegins to “cast” his “bread upon the strained to believe his own words: “Is waters,” to work without too much there any thing whereof it may be thought of results. “He that obsery- said, See, this is new? it hath been eth the wind shall not sow; and he that already of old time, which was before regardeth the clouds shall not reap," us." he declares to be his experience. ThereThe Spectator.
The sonnet is always with us. This poem, consecrated by tradition and is an age when the hurried reader, im- great example. It is not surprising, patient of the effort required for pro- therefore, that it should have an unlonged attention, demands short poems, exampled vogue. Collections of sonnets which he can read and master in their have been beyond number these late integrity during a casual hour of lei. years; and Mr. Bowyer Nichol's "Little
The much less capacity of most Book of English Sonnets" (Methuen modern poets for prolonged and sus- and Co.), which belongs to the "Little tained effort (which is an observable Library,” adds yet another. Though fact, explain it how you will), together on the whole well selected, it has nothwith their tendency towards lyric ing to distinguish it from other collecrather than narrative or dramatic po- tions but the skilful adaptation to its etry, renders them very willing to meet miniature size, which the editor has this taste of modern readers. Now the secured by limiting it to the poets besonnet is a ready-made form of brief fore Tennyson; about whose time be