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Sad escort are these tones that mourn
Ah, it is the faithful mother,
Whom the Shades' dark prince doth wrest
From the group of children, whom
Whom she beheld with mother's pride
No more her wakeful care and pains;
Earth shrouds her then
In black; but night
Brings no affright,
Night, that from their darkling den
Holy Order, with every kind
Of blessing fraught, who like doth bind
Industrious hands, their labors plying,
Their powers to higher achievement grow.
His guerdon some true blessing won;
Take honor, we from the things we've done.
Oh, blessed peace,
Oh, Concord sweet,
Hover, oh hover,
With kindly sway,
Over this town of ours, I pray !
Oh, may it never dawn, the day,
When grim War's ruthless crew
Shall riot this calm valley through!
When the heavens, which evening's mellow red
Colors with hues so fair,
Are all aflame with the ghastly glare
Of blazing towns, and the havoc dread
Of villages burning there!
Now, break me down the walls there! They
That our successful casting may
Rejoice both eye and heart.
Smite, stroke on stroke,
Till the cover's broke !
Ere the bell can rise from the pit below,
The master may, when all is ready,
With thunderous crash, blind-raging, from its
As though from the jaws of hell it came. Where brute force rules, unchecked by brains, Form cannot be, mere chaos reigns;
When the populace breaks from restraint away, Alas for their weal on that woful day!
Woe, when in cities, smouldering under,
Liberty and Equality! High
Through street and alley swells the cry!
With gathering crowds street, market swarms,
And make of horrors a scoff, a jest, And rend with panther-teeth and tear
The heart yet warm from some hated breast. Nothing is sacred more; flung loose
Is every tie of restraint and shame ;
To rouse the lion in jungle bedded
Is perilous, fell is the tiger's tooth,
But of all dread things to be chiefly dreaded
Woe to those who hand light's heaven-sent torch
Is no light for him, it can only scorch,
And this be the vocation still,
Even like the shining starry throng,
Herself without a heart to feel,
And on life's change and chance attend
Now tackle to the ropes and prise
She waves, swings free!
Joy to our town may this portend,
PEACE the first message be she forth shall send !
THE DAY AFTER TO-MORROW.
BY ROBERT LOUIS STEVENSON.
HISTORY is much decried; it is a tissue of errors, we are told, no doubt correctly; and rival historians expose each other's blunders with gratification. Yet the worst historian has a clearer view of the period he studies than the best of us can hope to form of that in which we live.
The obscurest epoch is to day; and that for a thousand reasons of inchoate tendency, conflicting report, and sheer mass and multiplicity of experience; but chiefly, perhaps, by reason of an insidious shifting of landmarks. Parties and ideas continually move, but not by measurable marches on a stable course; the political soil itself steals forth by imperceptible degrees, like a travelling glacier, carrying on its bosom not only political parties but their flagNEW SERIES.-VOL. XLV., No. 6
posts and cantonments; so that what appears to be an eternal city founded on hills is but a flying island of Laputa. It is for this reason in particular that we are all becoming Socialists without knowing it; by which I would not in the least refer to the acute case of Mr. Hyndman and his horn-blowing supporters, sounding their trumps of a Sunday within the walls of our individualist Jericho-but to the stealthy change that has come over the spirit of Englishmen and English legislation. A little while ago, and we were still for liberty; crowd a few more thousands on the bench of Government,' we seemed to cry; keep her head direct on liberty, and we cannot help but come to port. This is over; laissez-faire
declines in favor; our legislation grows authoritative, grows philanthropical, bristles with new duties and new penalties, and casts a spawn of inspectors, who now begin, note-book in hand, to darken the face of England. It may be right or wrong, we are not trying that; but one thing it is beyond doubt it is Socialism in action, and the strange thing is that we scarcely know it.
Liberty has served us a long while, and it may be time to seek new altars. Like all other principles, she has been proved to be self-exclusive in the long She has taken wages besides (like all other virtues) and dutifully served Mammon; so that many things we were accustomed to admire as the benefits of freedom and common to all, were truly benefits of wealth, and took their value from our neighbors' poverty. A few shocks of logic, a few disclosures (in the journalistic phrase) of what the freedom of manufacturers, landlords, or shipowners may imply for operatives, tenants or seamen, and we not unnaturally begin to turn to that other pole of hope, beneficent tyranny. Freedom, to be desirable, involves kindness, wisdom, and all the virtues of the free; but the free man as we have seen him in action has been, as of yore, only the master of many helots; and the slaves are still illfed, ill-clad, ill-taught, ill-housed, insolently entreated, and driven to their mines and workshops by the lash of famine. So much, in other men's affairs, we have begun to see clearly; we have begun to despair of virtue in these other men, and from our seat in Parliament begin to discharge upon them, thick as arrows, the host of our inspectors. The landlord has long shaken his head over the manufacturer; those who do business on land have lost all trust in the virtues of the shipowner; the professions look askance upon the retail traders, and have even started their co-operative stores to ruin them; and from out the smoke-wreaths of Birmingham a finger has begun to write. upon the wall the condemnation of the landlord. Thus, piece by piece, do we condemn each other, and yet not perceive the conclusion, that our whole estate is somewhat damnable. Thus, piece by piece, each acting against his neighbor, each sawing away the branch
on which some other interest is seated, do we apply in detail our Socialistic remedies, and yet not perceive that we are all laboring together to bring in Socialism at large. A tendency so stupid and so selfish is like to prove invincible; and if Socialism be at all a practicable rule of life, there is every chance that our grandchildren will see the day and taste the pleasures of existence in something far liker an ant-heap than any previous human polity. And this not in the least because of the voice of Mr. Hyndman or the horns of his followers; but by the mere glacier movement of the political soil, bearing forward on its bosom, apparently undisturbed, the proud camps of Whig and Tory. If Mr. Hyndman were a man of keen humor, which is far from my conception of his character, he might rest from his troubling and look on the walls of Jericho begin already to crumble and dissolve. That great servile war, the Armageddon of money and numbers, to which we looked forward when young, becomes more and more unlikely; and we may rather look to see a peaceable and blindfold evolution, the work of dull men immersed in political tactics and dead to political results.
The principal scene of this comedy lies, of course, in the House of Commons; it is there, besides, that the details of this new evolution (if it proceed) will fall to be decided; so that the state of Parliament is not only diagnostic of the present but fatefully prophetic of the future. Well, we all know what Parliament is, and we are all ashamed of it.. We may pardon it some faults, indeed, on the ground of Irish obstruction-a bitter trial, which it supports with notable good humor. But the excuse is merely local; it cannot apply to similar bodies in America and France; and what are we to say of these? President Cleveland's letter may serve as a picture of the one; a glance at almost any paper will convince us of the weakness of the other. Decay appears to have seized on the organ of popular government in every land; and this just at the moment when we begin to bring to it, as to an oracle of justice, the whole skein of our private affairs to be unravelled, and ask it, like a new Messiah, to take upon itself our frailties