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To the Editor of The Republican:--

I am interested, if a little jealous, that some one in advance of me has had the instinct to know and grace to praise the recent article in The Republican, by name "Autumn's Divien Beauty Begins." I meant to be first in, with recognition of that Poet, Prophet, Seer,--but appreciation was forced to wait upon the whims of Sirius.

This autumn augury, worthy the altar, reminds me of the old days of The Republican when Dr Holland often wrote a olumn of field flowers and woods, full of mood and romance, which were eagerly sought, clipped and passed on. It is of mellow interest to an old reader of the paper that all this Nature lore is still as it were aheritage. Such aromatic flavor of the passing seasons I only find as exceptional literature inother daily journals, and they inevitably hallow and redeem the necessarily practical columns of any newspaper.

That the author of this article has made his place as the high priest of all natural beauty we have all come to recognize,--but in all the sensitive improvisations of his life, and intimacy with natural evolutions, he has never risen to such a high transcription of the chant divine as in this sibylline song of autumn. When the fall fashions are in and the daring reds and yellows flaunt abroad.--when the gardens are nipped and man, the half-intelligent brute, explores the sacred haunts with his death-dealing shotguns.--the world announces it is fall, and flatters and patronizes it. But they born of the Spirit list the first magical whisper of the firmamental cosmical reversion, knowing that God is to try us with a new splendor, and the echoes of beauty and cahnge tremble through the soul and quickened memory. As housemates, with finger on lip, as in the hour of birth, we were just whispering "it has come, but nobody knows."

But no, our Seer was "earlier up" with his call to worship, and we devoutly bow and adore with him, for God is in his world and he makes us know and feel it. Our friend calls us to Nature's heart somewhat with the natural instinct of White's Selborne, never with the details of John Burroughs or the egotism of a Thoreau, or any kindergarten methods to instruct,--rather as if wandering through pastures, hills and brooksides, we had strayed into an unlimited cathedral, where we find the Eternal.

And so we who hear this call with its divine afflatus,--this threnody, thanatopsis, halleluia of the changing days, with their crescendos and diminuendos, join to the full in the glad acclaim with which this psalm of prophecy ends:--

"Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive honor and glory and power, for thou hast created all things and for they pleasure they are and were created."

"O matchless earth! we underrate the chance to live in thee!"

Amherst, August 2, 1906.

Transcription of essay reviewed not yet available...

Transcription of essay reviewed not yet available...

Martha Dickinson Bianchi Scrapbook
St. A. 126
Martha Dickinson Bianchi Collection
John Hay Library, Brown University Libraries

Transcription of essay reviewed not yet available...

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Writings by Susan Dickinson Main Page
Image reproduced by permission of the Houghton Library, Harvard University.
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Transcription and commentary copyright 1998 by Martha Nell Smith,
Laura Elyn Lauth, and Lara Vetter, all rights reserved
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Last updated on January 23, 2008

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