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To a criminal code both humane and effectual;
I propose to shut up every doer of wrong
With these desperate books, for such term, short or

As by statute in such cases made and provided,
Shall be by your wise legislators decided;
Thus :—Let'murderers be shut, to grow wiser and

cooler, At hard labor for life on the works of Miss

; Petty thieves, kept from flagranter crimes by their

fears, Shall peruse Yankee Doodle a blank term of

years, That American Punch, like the English, no doubtJust the sugar and lemons and spirit left out. “But stay, here comes Tityrus Griswold, and

leads on The flocks whom he first plucks alive, and then

feeds on, A loud-cackling swarm, in whose feathers warm

drest, He

goes for as perfect a-swan, as the rest. 6. There comes Emerson first, whose rich words,

every one, Are like gold nails in temples to hang trophies

on, Whose

prose is grand verse, while his verse, the

Lord knows, Is some of it


-No, 'tis not even prose ;
I'm speaking of metres ; some poems have welled
From those rare depths of soul that have ne'er

been excelled;
They're not epics, but that doesn't matter a pin,
In creating, the only hard thing's to begin ;
A grass-blade 's no easier to make than an oak.

If you've once found the way, you've achieved the

grand stroke;
In the worst of his poems are mines of rich matter,
But thrown in a heap with a crush and a clatter;
Now it is not one thing nor another alone
Makes a poem, but rather the general tone,
The something pervading, uniting the whole,

The before unconceived, unconceivable soul,
So that just in removing this trifle or that, you
Take away, as it were, a chief limb of the statue ;
Roots, wood, bark, and leaves, singly perfect may

be, But, clapt hodge-podge together, they don't make

a tree.

But, to come back to Emerson, (whom by the

way, I believe we left waiting,)—his is, we may say, A Greek head on right Yankee shoulders, whose

range Has Olympus for one pole, for tother the Ex

change; He seems, to my thinking, (although I'm afraid The comparison must, long ere this, have been

made,) A Plotinus-Montaigne, where the Egyptian's gold

mist And the Gascon's shrewd wit cheek-by-jowl co

exist; All admire, and yet scarely six converts he's got To I don't (nor they either) exactly know what; For though he builds glorious temples, tis odd He leaves never a doorway to get in a god. 'Tis refreshing to old-fashioned people like me, To meet such a primitive Pagan as he, In whose mind all creation is duly respected As parts of himself-just a little projected;

And who's willing to worship the stars and the


A convert to-nothing but Emerson.
So perfect a balance there is in his head,
That he talks of things sometimes as if they were

Life, nature, love, God, and affairs of that sort,
He looks at as merely ideas ; in short,
As if they were fossils stuck round in a cabinet,
Of such vast extent that our earth's a mere dab

in it; Composed just as he is inclined to conjecture her, Namely, one part pure earth, ninety-nine parts

pure lecturer; You are filled with delight at his clear demonstra

tion, Each figure, word, gesture, just fits the occasion, With the quiet precision of science he'll sort 'em, But you can't help suspecting the whole a post


“ There are persons, mole-blind to the soul's

make and style, Who insist on a likeness 'twixt him and Carlyle; To compare with Plato would be vastly fairer, Carlyle's the more burly, but E. is the rarer;: He sees fewer objects, but clearlier, truelier, If C.'s as original, E.'s more peculiar ; That he's more of a man you might say of the one, Of the other he's more of an Emerson ; C.'s the Titan, as shaggy of mind as of limb,E. the clear-eyed Olympian, rapid and slim ; The one's two-thirds Norseman, the other half

Greek, Where the one 's most abounding, the other 's to

seek; C.'s generals require to be seer in the mass,

So he muses, his face with the joy of it glistening, For his highest conceit of a happiest state is Where they'd live upon acorns, and hear him talk

gratis ; And indeed, I believe, no man ever talked betterEach sentence hangs perfectly poised to a letter; He seems piling words, but there's royal dust hid In the heart of each sky-piercing pyramid. While he talks he is great, but goes out like a

taper, If you shut him up closely with pen, ink, and

paper; Yet his fingers itch for 'em from morning till night, And he thinks he does wrong if he don't always

write; In this, as in all things, a lamb among men, He goes to sure death when he goes to his pen. “ Close behind him is Brownson, his mouth very

full With attempting to gulp a Gregorian bull; Who contrives, spite of that, to pour out as he

goes A stream of transparent and forcible prose; He shifts quite about, then proceeds to expound That 'tis merely the earth, not himself, that turns

round, And wishes it clearly impressed on your mind, That the weather-cock rules and not follows the

wind; Proving first, then as deftly confuting each side, With no doctrine pleased that's not somewhere

denied, He lays the denier away on the shelf, And then—down beside him lies gravely himself. He's the Salt River boatman, who always stands


To convey friend or foe without charging a shil

ling, And so fond of the trip that, when leisure's to

spare, He'll row himself up, if he can't get a fare. The worst of it is, that his logic's so strong, That of two sides he commonly chooses the wrong ; If there is only one, why, he'll split it in two, And first pummel this half, then that, black and

blue. That white's white needs no proof, but it takes a

deep fellow To prove it jet-black, and that jet-black is yellow. He offers the true faith to drink in a sieve, When it reaches your lips there's naught left to

believe But a few silly-(syllo-, I mean,) -gisms that squat

'em Like tadpoles, o'erjoyed with the mud at the bot


“ There is Willis, so natty and jaunty and gay, Who says his best things in so foppish a way, With conceits and pet phrases so thickly o’erlaying

’em, That one hardly knows whether to thank him for

saying 'em; Over-ornament ruins both



prose, Just conceive of a Muse with a ring in her nose ! His prose had a natural

And enough of it, too, if he'd let it alone;
But he twitches and jerks so, one fairly gets tired,
And is forced to forgive where he might have ad-

mired ;
Yet whenever it slips away free and unlaced,
It runs like a stream with a musical waste,
And gurgles along with the liquidest sweep :-

of its own,

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