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Title: Writings in the United Amateur, 1915-1922
Author: Lovecraft, H. P. (Howard Phillips)
Language: English
As this book started as an ASCII text book there are no pictures available.
Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Writings in the United Amateur, 1915-1922" ***

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Transcriber's Note:

    Italic text has been marked by _underscores_, whilst bold text
    appears as =bold=. The following table of contents has been added
    for convenience:

      United Amateur Press Association:
        Exponent of Amateur Journalism                          4

      The United Amateur, January 1915
        Department of Public Criticism                          7

      The United Amateur, March 1915
        Department of Public Criticism                         10
        March                                                  14

      The United Amateur, May 1915
        Department of Public Criticism                         15

      The United Amateur, September 1915
        Department of Public Criticism                         21
        Little Journeys to the Homes of Prominent Amateurs     31

      The United Amateur, February 1916
        The Teuton's Battle-Song                               33

      The United Amateur, April 1916
        Department of Public Criticism                         35

      The United Amateur, June 1916
        Department of Public Criticism                         42
        The Poetry of the Month: Content                       49

      The United Amateur, August 1916
        Department of Public Criticism                         50

      The United Amateur, September 1916
        Department of Public Criticism                         54

      The United Amateur, November 1916
        The Alchemist                                          61

      The United Amateur, March 1917
        Department of Public Criticism                         65

      The United Amateur, May 1917
        Department of Public Criticism                         71

      The United Amateur, July 1917
        Ode for July Fourth, 1917                              80
        Department of Public Criticism                         81
        News Notes: To M. W. M.                                84

      The United Amateur, November 1917
        A Reminiscence of Dr. Samuel Johnson                   84
        Department of Public Criticism                         87
        Reports of Officers: President's Message               90

      The United Amateur, January 1918
        Reports of Officers: President's Message               91

      The United Amateur, March 1918
        Reports of Officers: President's Message               92

      The United Amateur, May 1918
        Sunset                                                 92
        Department of Public Criticism                         93
        Reports of Officers: President's Message               98

      The United Amateur, June 1918
        Astrophobos                                            99

      The United Amateur, July 1918
        At the Root                                           100
        Reports of Officers: President's Message              101

      The United Amateur, November 1918
        Department of Literature: The Literature of Rome      102
        To Alan Seeger                                        106

      The United Amateur, January 1919
        Theodore Roosevelt                                    107

      The United Amateur, March 1919
        A Note on Howard P. Lovecraft's Verse                 108
        Official Reports: Department of Public Criticism      109

      The United Amateur, May 1919
        Helene Hoffman Cole--Litterateur                      113

      The United Amateur, July 1919
        Americanism                                           114

      The United Amateur, November 1919
        The White Ship                                        115
        To Mistress Sophia Simple, Queen of the Cinema        118

      The United Amateur, January 1920
        Literary Composition                                  119

      The United Amateur, May 1920
        For What Does the United Stand?                       123

      The United Amateur, September 1920
        Poetry and the Gods                                   124

      The United Amateur, November 1920
        Nyarlathotep                                          128
        Editorial                                             129
        Official Organ Fund                                   130

      The United Amateur, January 1921
        Official Organ Fund                                   130

      The United Amateur, March 1921
        Winifred Virginia Jackson: A "Different" Poetess      130
        Ex Oblivione                                          134
        Official Organ Fund                                   134

      The United Amateur, September 1921
        The United Amateur                                    135
        Editorial                                             136

      The United Amateur, November 1921
        The United Amateur                                    138
        Official Organ Fund                                   138

      The United Amateur, January 1922
        The United Amateur                                    139
        Editorial                                             139

      The United Amateur, March 1922
        Official Organ Fund                                   140

      The United Amateur, May 1922
        Official Organ Fund                                   140
        At the Home of Poe                                    140


           SEPTEMBER 1915

 [Illustration: HOWARD P. LOVECRAFT
 First Vice-President U. A. P. A.]

United Amateur Press Association



The desire to write for publication is one which inheres strongly in
every human breast. From the proficient college graduate, storming the
gates of the high-grade literary magazines, to the raw schoolboy, vainly
endeavoring to place his first crude compositions in the local
newspapers, the whole intelligent public are today seeking expression
through the printed page, and yearning to behold their thoughts and
ideals permanently crystallized in the magic medium of type. But while a
few persons of exceptional talent manage eventually to gain a foothold
in the professional world of letters rising to celebrity through the
wide diffusion of their art, ideals, or opinions; the vast majority,
unless aided in their education by certain especial advantages, are
doomed to confine their expression to the necessarily restricted sphere
of ordinary conversation. To supply these especial educational
advantages which may enable the general public to achieve the
distinction of print, and which may prevent the talented but unknown
author from remaining forever in obscurity, has arisen that largest and
foremost of societies for literary education =The United Amateur Press


Amateur journalism, or the composition and circulation of small,
privately printed magazines, is an instructive diversion which has
existed in the United States for over half a century. In the decade of
1866-1876 this practice first became an organized institution; a
short-lived society of amateur journalists, including the now famous
publisher, Charles Scribner, having existed from 1869 to 1874. In 1876 a
more lasting society was formed, which exists to this day as an exponent
of light dilettantism. Not until 1895, however, was amateur journalism
established as a serious branch of educational endeavour. On September
2nd of that year, Mr. William H. Greenfield, a gifted professional
author, of Philadelphia, founded =The United Amateur Press Association=,
which has grown to be the leader of its kind, and the representative of
amateur journalism in its best phases throughout the English-speaking


In many respects the word "amateur" fails to do full credit to amateur
journalism and the association which best represents it. To some minds
the term conveys an idea of crudity and immaturity, yet the =United= can
boast of members and publications whose polish and scholarship are
well-nigh impeccable. In considering the adjective "amateur" as applied
to the press association, we must adhere to the more basic
interpretation, regarding the word as indicating the non-mercenary
nature of the membership. Our amateurs write purely for love of their
art, without the stultifying influence of commercialism. Many of them
are prominent professional authors in the outside world, but their
professionalism never creeps into their association work. The atmosphere
is wholly fraternal, and courtesy takes the place of currency.

The real essential of amateur journalism and =The United Amateur Press
Association= is the amateur paper or magazine, which somewhat resembles
the average high-school or college publication. These journals, varying
greatly in size and character, are issued by various members at their
own expense, and contain, besides the literary work of their several
editors or publishers, contributions from all the many members who do
not publish papers of their own. Their columns are open to every person
in the association, and it may be said with justice that no one will
find it impossible to secure the publication of any literary composition
of reasonable brevity. The papers thus published are sent free to all
our many members, who constitute a select and highly appreciative
reading public. Since each member receives the published work of every
other member, many active and brilliant minds are brought into close
contact, and questions of every sort, literary, historical, and
scientific, are debated both in the press and in personal
correspondence. The correspondence of members is one of the most
valuable features of the =United=, for through this medium a great
intellectual stimulus, friendly and informal in nature, is afforded.
Congenial members are in this way brought together in a lettered
companionship, which often grows into life-long friendship, while
persons of opposed ideas may mutually gain much breadth of mind by
hearing the other side of their respective opinions discussed in a
genial manner. In short, the =United= offers an exceptionally
well-proportioned mixture of instruction and fraternal cheer. There are
no limits of age, sex, education, position, or locality in this most
complete of democracies. Boys and girls of twelve and men and women of
sixty, parents and their sons and daughters, college professors and
grammar-school pupils, aristocrats and intelligent labourers, Easterners
and Westerners, are here given equal advantages, those of greater
education helping their cruder brethren until the common fund of culture
is as nearly level as it can be in any human organization. Members are
classified according to age; "A" meaning under sixteen, "B" from 16 to
21, and "C" over 21. The advantages offered to those of limited
acquirements are immense, many persons having gained practically all
their literary polish through membership in the =United=. A much
cherished goal is professional authorship or editorship, and numerous
indeed are the =United= members who have now become recognized authors,
poets, editors, and publishers. True, though trite, is the saying that
amateur journalism is an actual training school for professional


Members of the =United= may or may not publish little papers of their
own. This is a matter of choice, for there are always enough journals to
print the work of the non-publishing members. Youths who possess
printing presses will find publishing an immense but inexpensive
pleasure, whilst other publishers may have their printing done at very
reasonable rates by those who do own presses. The favorite size for
amateur papers is 5◊7 inches, which can be printed at 55 or 60 cents per
page, each page containing about 250 words. Thus a four-page issue
containing 1000 words can be published for less than $2.50, if
arrangements are made, as is often the case, for its free mailing with
any other paper. Certain of the more pretentious journals affect the
7◊10 size, which costs about $1.60 for each page of 700 words. These
figures allow for 250 copies, the most usual number to be mailed. Mr.
E. E. Ericson of Elroy, Wisconsin, is our Official Printer, and his work
is all that the most fastidious could demand. Other printers may be
found amongst the young men who print their own papers. In many cases
they can quote very satisfactory prices. Two or more members may issue a
paper co-operatively, the individual expense then being very slight.


The =United= welcomes all literary contributions; poems, stories, and
essays, which the various members may submit. However, contribution is
by no means compulsory, and in case a member finds himself too busy for
activity, he may merely enjoy the free papers which reach him, without
taxing himself with literary labour. For those anxious to contribute,
every facility is provided. In some cases negotiations are made directly
between publisher and contributor, but the majority are accommodated by
the two Manuscript Bureaus, Eastern and Western, which receive
contributions in any quantity from the non-publishing members, and are
drawn upon for material by those who issue papers. These bureaus
practically guarantee on the one hand to find a place for each member's
manuscript, and on the other hand to keep each publisher well supplied
with matter for his journal.


The two critical departments of the =United= are at present the most
substantial of its various educational advantages. The Department of
Private Criticism is composed exclusively of highly cultured members,
usually professors or teachers of English, who practically mould the
taste of the whole association, receiving and revising before
publication the work of all who choose to submit it to them. The service
furnished free by this department is in every way equal to that for
which professional critical bureaus charge about two dollars.
Manuscripts are carefully corrected and criticised in every detail, and
authors are given comprehensive advice designed to elevate their taste,
style, and grammar. Many a crude but naturally gifted writer has been
developed to polished fluency and set on the road to professional
authorship through the =United's= Department of Private Criticism.

The Department of Public Criticism reviews thoroughly and impartially
the various printed papers and their contents, offering precepts and
suggestions for improvement. Its reports are printed in the official
organ of the association, and serve as a record of our literary


To encourage excellence amongst the members of the =United=, annual
honours or "laureateships" are awarded the authors of the best poems,
stories, essays, or editorials. Participation in these competitions is
not compulsory, since they apply only to pieces which have been
especially "entered for laureateship." The entries are judged not by the
members of the association, but by highly distinguished litterateurs of
the professional world, selected particularly for the occasion. Our
latest innovation is a laureateship for the best home-printed paper,
which will excite keen rivalry among our younger members, and bring out
some careful specimens of the typographical art. Besides the
laureateships there are other honours and prizes awarded by individual
publishers within the =United=, many of the amateur journals offering
excellent books for the best stories, reviews, or reports submitted to


The association, as a whole, publishes a voluminous 7◊10 monthly
magazine called =The United Amateur=, which serves as the official
organ. In this magazine may be found the complete revised list of
members, the reports of officers and committees, the ample reviews
issued by the Department of Public Criticism, a selection of the best
contemporary amateur literature, together with the latest news of
amateur journalists and their local clubs from all over the Anglo-Saxon
world. =The United Amateur= is published by an annually elected Official
Editor, and printed by the Official Publisher. It is sent free to all
members of the association.


=The United Amateur Press Association= is governed by a board of
officers elected by popular vote. The elections take place at the annual
conventions, where amateurs from all sections meet and fraternize. Those
who attend vote in person, whilst all others send in proxy ballots.
There is much friendly rivalry between cities concerning the selection
of the convention seat each year. The principal elective officers of the
=United= are the President, two Vice-Presidents, the Treasurer, the
Official Editor and the three members of the Board of Directors. There
are also a Historian, a Laureate Recorder, and two Manuscript Managers.
Appointed by the President are the members of the two Departments of
Criticism, the Supervisor of Amendments, the Official Publisher, and the
Secretary of the association. All save Secretary and Official Publisher,
serve without remuneration. The basic law of the =United= comprises an
excellent Constitution and By-Laws.


The =United= encourages the formation of local literary or press clubs
in cities or towns containing several members. These clubs generally
publish papers, and hold meetings wherein the pleasures of literature
are enlivened by those of the society. The most desirable form of club
activity is that in which a high-school instructor forms a literary
society of the more enthusiastic members of his class.


During the past two years, as it has approached and passed its twentieth
birthday, the =United= has been endeavoring more strongly than ever to
find and occupy its true place amongst the many and varied phases of
education. That it discharges an unique function in literary culture is
certain, and its members have of late been trying very actively to
establish and define its relation to the high-school and the university.
Mr. Maurice Winter Moe, Instructor of English at the Appleton High
School, Appleton, Wisconsin, and one of our very ablest members, took
the first decisive step by organizing his pupils into an amateur press
club, using the =United= to supplement his regular class-room work. The
scholars were delighted, and many have acquired a love of good
literature which will never leave them. Three or four, in particular,
have become prominent in the affairs of the =United=. After
demonstrating the success of his innovation, Mr. Moe described it in
=The English Journal=, his article arousing much interest in educational
circles, and being widely reprinted by other papers. In November, 1914,
Mr. Moe addressed an assemblage of English teachers in Chicago, and
there created so much enthusiasm for the =United=, that scores of
instructors have subsequently joined our ranks, many of them forming
school clubs on the model of the original club at Appleton. Here, then,
is one definite destiny for our association: to assist the teaching of
advanced English in the high-school. We are especially eager for
high-school material, teachers and pupils alike.

But there still remain a numerous class, who, though not connected with
school or college, have none the less sincere literary aspirations. At
present they are benefited immensely through mental contact with our
more polished members, yet for the future we plan still greater aids for
their development, by the creation of a systematic "Department of
Instruction," which will, if successfully established, amount
practically to a free correspondence school, and an "Authors' Placing
Bureau," which will help amateurs in entering the professional field.
Our prime endeavor is at present to secure members of high mental and
scholastic quality, in order that the =United= may be strengthened for
its increasing responsibility. Professors, teachers, clergymen, and
authors have already responded in gratifying numbers to our wholly
altruistic plea for their presence among us. The reason for the
=United's= success as an educational factor seems to lie principally in
the splendid loyalty and enthusiasm which all the members somehow
acquire upon joining. Every individual is alert for the welfare of the
association, and its activities form the subject of many of the current
essays and editorials. The ceaseless writing in which most of the
members indulge is in itself an aid to fluency, while the mutual
examples and criticisms help on still further the pleasantly unconscious
acquisition of a good literary style. When regular courses of
instruction shall have been superimposed upon these things, the
association can indeed afford to claim a place of honour in the world of


The only requirement for admission to the =United= is earnest literary
aspiration. Any member will furnish the candidate for admission with an
application blank, signed in recommendation. This application, filled
out and forwarded to the Secretary of the association with the sum of
fifty cents as dues for the first year, and accompanied by a
"credential," or sample of the candidate's original literary work, will
be acted upon with due consideration by the proper official. No
candidate of real sincerity will be denied admittance, and the applicant
will generally be soon rewarded by his certificate of membership, signed
by the President and Secretary. Papers, letters, and postal cards of
welcome will almost immediately pour in upon him, and he will in due
time behold his credential in print. (Unless it be something already
printed.) Once a member, his dues will be one dollar yearly, and if he
should ever leave the =United=, later desiring to join again, his
reinstatement fee will be one dollar.


=The United Amateur Press Association= is anything but local in its
personnel. Its active American membership extends from Boston to Los
Angeles, and from Milwaukee to Tampa, thus bringing all sections in
contact, and representing every phase of American thought. Its English
membership extends as far north as Newcastle-on-Tyne. Typical papers are
published in England, California, Kansas, Wisconsin, Ohio, Illinois,
Alabama, Mississippi, North Carolina, District of Columbia, New York,
and Rhode Island.

In writing for entrance blanks or for further information concerning the
=United=, the applicant may address any one of the following officers,
who will gladly give details, and samples of amateur papers: Leo
Fritter, President, 503 Central National Bank Bldg., Columbus, Ohio;
H. P. Lovecraft, Vice-President, 598 Angell St., Providence, R. I.; Mrs.
J. W. Renshaw, Second Vice-President, Coffeeville, Miss.; William J.
Dowdell, Secretary, 2428 East 66th St., Cleveland, Ohio; or Edward F.
Daas, Official Editor, 1717 Cherry St., Milwaukee, Wis. Professional
authors interested in our work are recommended to communicate with the
Second Vice-President, while English teachers may derive expert
information from Maurice W. Moe, 658 Atlantic St., Appleton, Wis. Youths
who possess printing-presses are referred to the Secretary, who is
himself a young typographer.


    =If you are= a student of elementary English desirous of attaining
    literary polish in an enjoyable manner,

    =If you are= an ordinary citizen, burning with the ambition to
    become an author,

    =If you are= a solitary individual wishing for a better chance to
    express yourself,

    =If you own= a printing-press and would like to learn how to issue a
    high-grade paper,

    =If you are= a mature person eager to make up for a youthful lack of

    =If you are= a professor or teacher seeking a new method of
    interesting your English class, or

    =If you are= an author or person of ripe scholarship, anxious to aid
    your cruder brothers on their way, then


                                                  H. P. LOVECRAFT,

                        THE UNITED AMATEUR




THE BADGER for January is the first number of a strikingly meritorious
and serious paper published by George S. Schilling. We here behold none
of the frivolity which spoils the writings of those who view amateur
journalism merely as a passing amusement. The Badger shows evidence of
careful and tasteful editorship, combined with a commendable artistic
sense in choice of paper and cover.

The leading article, an essay on the minimum wage, is from the pen of
the editor, and shows both literary ability and a sound knowledge of
economics. "Sister to the Ox", by A. W. Ashby, is an excellent short
story whose strength is rather in its moral than in its plot. The
editorials are certainly not lacking in force, and seem well calculated
to stir the average amateur from his torpor of triteness and inanity.

THE INSPIRATION for November is an "Official Number", containing the
work of none but titled authors. Rheinhart Kleiner contributes the
single piece of verse, a smooth and pleasing lyric entitled "Love
Again", which is not unlike his previous poem, "Love, Come Again". As an
amatory poet, Mr. Kleiner shows much delicacy of sentiment, refinement
of language, and appreciation of metrical values; his efforts in this
direction entitle him to a high place among amateur bards.

One of the truly notable prose features of the magazine is Walter John
Held's delightful sketch of Joaquin Miller's home and haunts. This
artistic picture of Californian scenery exhibits a real comprehension of
the beauties of Nature, and stirs to an unusual degree the imagination
of the reader. Mr. Held's prose possesses a fluency and grace that bring
it close to the professional quality, and its few faults are far less
considerable than might be expected from the pen of a young author.
However, we must remark some rather awkward examples of grammatical
construction. The correct plural of "eucalyptus" is "eucalypti", without
any final "s", the name being treated as a Latin noun of the second
declension. "Slowly and dignified--it pursues its way" is hardly a
permissible clause; the adjective "dignified" must be exchanged for an
adverb. Perhaps Mr. Held sought to employ poetical enallage, but even
so, the adjective does not correspond with "slowly"; besides, the use of
enallage in prose is at best highly questionable. "This free and rank
flowers and brush" is another bad clause. But it is not well to dissect
the sketch too minutely. A youth of Mr. Held's ability needs only time
and continued practice to raise him to the highest rank in prose

INVICTUS for January, the first number of Mr. Paul J. Campbell's new
individual paper, is one of those rare journals concerning which it is
almost impossible to speak without enthusiasm. Not one of its twenty-six
pages fails to delight us. Foremost in merit, and most aptly suited to
Mr. Campbell's particular type of genius, are the three inspiring
essays, "The Impost of the Future", "The Sublime Ideal", and "Whom God
Hath Put Asunder". Therein appears to great advantage the keen reasoning
and sound materialistic philosophy of the author. "The Sublime Ideal" is
especially absorbing, tracing as it does the expansion of the human mind
from a state of the narrowest and most violent bigotry to its present
moderate breadth.

The three pieces of verse, "Inspiration", "The Larger Life", and "Down
in Mexico", are all of smooth construction and musical metre, though
not exhibiting their author's powers as well as his essays. "Down in
Mexico", a virile poem in Kipling's style, is unquestionably the best of
the three.

Mr. Campbell's comments on amateur affairs are well-written and
entertaining, especially his reminiscent article entitled "After Seven

OUTWARD BOUND for January is an excellent journal edited by George
William Stokes of Newcastle-on-Tyne, England. It is gratifying to behold
such a paper as this, one of the links between America and the parent
country which the United is helping to forge.

Herbert B. Darrow opens the issue with a short story entitled "A
Lesson". The tale is of conventional pattern, containing a sound though
not strikingly original moral. The language is generally good, except in
one sentence where the author speaks of "the vehicles in the street and
buildings about him". Surely he does not mean that the vehicles were in
the buildings as well as in the street. The use of the definite article
before the word "buildings" would do much toward dispelling the
ambiguous effect.

"The Haunted Forest", a poem by J. H. Fowler, is almost Poe-like in its
grimly fantastic quality. We can excuse rather indefinite metre when we
consider the admirably created atmosphere, the weird harmony of the
lines, the judicious use of alliteration, and the apt selection of
words. "Bird-shunned", as applied to the thickets of the forest, is a
particularly graphic epithet. Mr. Fowler is to be congratulated upon his
glowing imagination and poetical powers.

"A Bit o' Purple Heather", by Edna von der Heide, is a delightful piece
of verse in modified Scottish dialect, which well justifies the
dedication of the magazine to this poetess.

Mr. Stokes' editorial, headed "Ships that Pass", sustains the nautical
atmosphere of his periodical. We wish he had given his thoughts a larger
space for expression.

THE PIPER for December comes as a surprise to those who have known
Rheinhart Kleiner only as a master of metre, for he is here displayed as
the possessor of a pure and vigorous prose style as well. In this, the
opening number of his individual journal, Mr. Kleiner provides us with a
pleasing variety of literary matter; two serious poems, two rhymes of
lighter character, an essay on the inevitable topic of Consolidation,
and a brilliant collection of short editorials and criticisms.

"A Carnation", which begins the issue, is an exquisite piece of
sentiment couched in faultless verse. The odd measure of the poem is one
peculiarly suited to the author's delicate type of genius; an iambic
line of only three feet. The other lyric, "Heart, Do Not Wake", is
likewise of excellent quality, though the succession of "again" and
"pain" in the first line might suggest to some ears an unnecessary
internal rhyme.

"The Rhyme of the Hapless Poet" is very clever, and can be truly
appreciated by every author of printed matter. Perhaps the misfortune of
which the poet complains is the cause of the extra syllable in the first
line of the second stanza; we hope that the following is what Mr.
Kleiner intended:

    "I wrote a poem, 'twas a prize".

Otherwise we are forced to believe that he pronounces "poem" as a
monosyllable, "pome". "My Favorite Amateur" is a good specimen of light,
imitative verse.

The article on Consolidation is cynical in tone, but eminently sensible.
It is only too true that our greatest intellectual stimulus is found in
controversy and antagonism; we are really quite bellicose in our
instincts, despite the utterances of the peace advocates.

Mr. Kleiner concludes his journal with a sparkling epigram on a rather
obvious though regrettable tendency in amateur circles.

The Piper is in general a paper of satisfying merit, to whose future
issues we shall look forward with eagerness.

THE RECRUITING FEMININE for 1914-1915 is a publication of unusual worth.
"The Rose Supreme," by Coralie Austin, is a delicate little poem in
which we regret the presence of one inexcusably bad rhyme. To rhyme the
words "rose" and "unclosed" is to exceed the utmost limits of poetic
license. It is true that considerable variations in vowel sounds have
been permitted; "come" makes, or at least used to make, an allowable
rhyme with "home", "clock" with "look", or "grass" with "place"; but a
final consonant attached to one of two otherwise rhyming syllables
positively destroys the rhyme.

Mrs. Myra Cole's essay on "The Little Things of Life" is well written
and instructive.

"The Dirge of the Great Atlantic", by Anne Vyne Tillery Renshaw, is a
grim and moving bit of verse, cast in the same primitively stirring
metre which this author used in her professionally published poem, "The
Chant of Iron". Mrs. Renshaw possesses an enviable power to reach the
emotions through the medium of written words.

"Two Octobers--A Contrast", by Eloise N. Griffith, is a meritorious
sketch ending with the usual appeal for the cessation of the European
war. We fear that the author cannot quite realize the ambitious
passions, essential ingredients of human nature, which render necessary
a final decision.

Miss Edna von der Heide, in an able article, rallies to the defense of
Mr. W. E. Griffin's now famous "Favorite Pastime". The Modern Lothario
is fortunate in having so competent and experienced a champion. However,
we cannot wholly endorse the sentiments of these excellent writers. The
statement that "all amateur journalists are flirts, more or less", is a
base and unwarranted libel which we are prepared completely to refute.

"The Audience", by Mrs. Florence Shepphird, is a masterly defense of
those inactive amateurs whom we are all too prone to consider as
delinquent. It is indeed true that authors would be useless were it not
for some sort of a reading public.

TOLEDO AMATEUR for December is a wholesome juvenile product. The
typography still leaves something to be desired, but the evidences of
care are everywhere visible, and we may reasonably expect to see it
improve from month to month, into one of the leading amateur papers.
Credentials form the keynote of the current issue, and a very promising
assortment of recruits are here introduced to the members of the United.
Miss Sandborn, who is fortunate enough to be one of Mr. Moe's pupils at
Appleton, contributes an interesting school anecdote, narrated in simple
fashion. Miss Thie gives information concerning the "Campfire Girls".
Some new members of adult years are also represented in this number. Mr.
Jenkins shows an admirable command of light prose, and will undoubtedly
prove one of the United's most entertaining writers. Misses Kline and
McGeoch both exhibit marked poetical tendencies in prose, the latter
writer having something of Mr. Fritter's facility in the use of
metaphor. Mr. Porter's editorials are refreshingly naive and unaffected.
His grammar is generally good, except in the one sentence where he
speaks of the Toledo Times. He should say, "the newspaper which has
given me much experience, and to whose publishers I owe a great deal of
experience gained."

THE UNITED OFFICIAL QUARTERLY for November marks the beginning of a
laudable enterprise on the part of the official board. The magazine is
of artistic appearance in cover, paper, and typography alike, while the
contents show considerable care in preparation.

Ira A. Cole's essay on "The Gods of Our Fathers" is the leading feature
and, though not of perfect perspicuity nor faultless unity, is none the
less noteworthy as a sincere expression of Pantheism. Mr. Cole keenly
feels the incongruity of our devotion to Semitic theological ideals,
when as a matter of fact we are descended from Aryan polytheists, and
his personification of the Grecian deities in the men of today is a
pleasing and ingenious conception. We are inclined to wonder whether the
author or the printer is to blame for rendering the poet Hesiod's name
as "Hesoid".

The metric art is represented by three contributions. Paul J. Campbell's
lines on "The Heritage of Life" are smooth in construction and proper in
sentiment, though they are far from showing their author at his best.
Mr. Campbell is a supreme master of the philosophical essay and of
pointed, satirical prose, being a very "Junius" in bold, biting
invective; but is placed at something of a disadvantage in the domain of
conventional poetry. Rheinhart Kleiner and ourselves revel in heroic
couplets of widely differing nature. Our own masterpiece is in full
Queen Anne style with carefully balanced lines and strictly measured
quantities. We have succeeded in producing eighteen lines without a
single original sentiment or truly poetical image. Rev. Mr. Pyke, the
object of the verses, deserves a better encomiast. Mr. Kleiner, on the
other hand, uses an heroic metre of that softened type which was
evolved at the close of the eighteenth century from the disruption of
the more formal style. In this sort of verse the stiff, classic
expressions are discarded, and the sense frequently overflows from
couplet to couplet, giving the romantic poet a greater latitude for
expression than was possible in the old models. "Vacation" is not
distinguished by any strikingly novel idea, but is in general a very
clever piece of light work. The only substantial defect is in the eighth
line, where the word "resort" is so placed, that the accent must fall
wrongfully upon the first syllable.

Leo Fritter's article on criticism is timely and sensible. As he justly
contends, some authorized amateur critics deal far too roughly with the
half-formed products of the young author, while most unofficial and
inexperienced reviewers fairly run mad with promiscuous condemnation.
The fancied brilliancy of the critic is always greatest when he censures
most, so that the temptations of the tribe are many. We are at best but
literary parasites, and need now and then just such a restraining word
as our counter-critic gives us. Mr. Fritter's style is here, as usual,
highly ornamented with metaphor. One slight defect strikes the
fastidious eye, but since split infinitives are becoming so common in
these days, we shall attend the author's plea for gentleness, and remain

                                                  H. P. LOVECRAFT,
                             Chairman, Department of Public Criticism.



THE BLARNEY STONE for November-December is dedicated to its contributors
and wholly given over to their work. "Did You Ever Go A-Fishin'?," by
Olive G. Owen, is a vivid poetical portrayal of that peculiar attraction
which the angler's art exerts on its devotees. While the whole is of
high and pleasing quality, exception must be taken to the rhyming of
"low" with itself at the very beginning of the poem. It may be that the
second "low" is a misprint for "slow", yet even in that case, the rhyme
is scarcely allowable, since the dominant rhyming sound would still be
"low". Miss Edna von der Heide, in "The Christmas of Delsato's Maria",
tells how an Italian thief utilized his questionable art to replace a
loss in his family. "To General Villa" is a peculiar piece of verse
written last summer for the purpose of defying those who had charged its
author with pedantry and pomposity. It has suffered somewhat at the
hands of the printer; "Intrepido" being spelled "Intrepedo", and the
word "own" being dropped from the clause "your own name can't write" in
the third line of the second stanza. Also, the first of the Spanish
double exclamation marks around the oath "Santa Maria" is right side up
instead of inverted according to Castilian custom. Having been hastily
written, the piece is wholly without merit. "Senor", in the second line
of the third stanza is placed so that the accent must fall erroneously
on the first syllable. The changes of time and revolutions have rendered
the last stanza sadly out of date.

The issue is concluded with a beautiful editorial on "The Service With
Love", wherein is described the ideal spirit of brotherhood which should
pervade amateur journalism. We regret the two blank pages at the back of
the magazine, and wish that some talented Blarney had seen fit to adorn
them with his work.

THE BROOKLYNITE for January is of unusual merit, fairly teeming with
features of a well-written and substantial character.

The short story by Mrs. Carson is developed with admirable simplicity
and ease; the plot not too strained, and the moral not too pragmatically
forced upon the reader. The conversation, always a difficult point with
amateur authors, is surprisingly natural.

Mrs. Adams' essay on ghosts displays considerable literary knowledge,
though the anecdote at the end is rather ancient for use today. We last
heard it about ten years ago, with a Scotchman instead of a negro
preacher as the narrator, and with the word "miracle" instead of
"phenomena" as the subject.

Mr. Goodwin's "Cinigrams" are delightful, and we expect soon to hear the
author heralded as the Martial of amateur journalism. "Ford, Do Not
Shake", Mr. Goodwin's parody on Kleiner's "Heart, Do Not Wake", is
actually side-splitting. The metre is handled to perfection, and the
humor is extremely clever.

"Consolidation", by George Julian Houtain, is a fair example of the
manner in which some of the less dignified National politicians try to
cast silly aspersions on the United. The elaborately sarcastic phrase:
"United boys and girls", seems to please its author, since he uses it
twice. There is unconscious irony in the spectacle of a National man,
once a member of the notorious old Gotham ring, preaching virtuously
against the "unenviable record" of the United.

Mr. Stoddard's brief essay, composed at a meeting of the Blue Pencil
Club, is excellent, and his concluding quatrain regular and melodious.
We wish, however, that he would give us some more of the serious fiction
that he can write so splendidly, and which used several years ago to
appear in the amateur press.

"Music Moods", by Charles D. Isaacson, is an emotional sketch of great
power and delicate artistry. Mr. Isaacson has an active imagination and
a literary ability which makes his readers see very vividly the images
he creates.

Mrs. Houtain's poem shows great but as yet undeveloped talent. The
repeated use of the expletive "do" in such phrases as "I do sigh", or "I
pray and do pine", mars the verse somewhat. As Pope remarked and
humorously illustrated in his Essay on Criticism:

    "Expletives their feeble aid DO join."

Mr. Ayres' jocose epic is clever and tuneful. The climax, or rather
anticlimax, comes quite effectively.

Mr. Adams, in his brilliant verses entitled "Gentlemen, Please Desist",
exposes in a masterly way the fatuity of our loud-mouthed peace workers.
Miss Silverman's lines on the same subject are very good, but scarcely
equal in keenness of wit. It is all very well to "keep industry
booming", but industry cannot take the place of military efficiency in
protecting a nation against foreign aggression.

As a whole, the January Brooklynite is the best number we have yet seen.

THE COYOTE for March is not a revival of Ex-President Brechler's
well-known amateur journal of that name, but a semi-professional leaflet
edited by Mr. William T. Harrington, a rather new recruit. The leading
feature is a sensational short story by the editor, entitled "What
Gambling Did". In this tale, Mr. Harrington exhibits at least a strong
ambition to write, and such energy, if well directed, may eventually
make of him one of our leading authors of fiction. Just now, however, we
must protest against his taste in subject and technique. His models are
obviously not of the classical order, and his ideas of probability are
far from unexceptionable. In developing the power of narration, it is
generally best, as one of our leading amateurs lately reiterated, to
discard the thought of elaborate plots and thrilling climaxes, and to
begin instead with the plain and simple description of actual incidents
with which the author is familiar. Likewise, the young author may avoid
improbability by composing his earliest efforts in the first person. He
knows what he himself would do in certain circumstances, but he does not
always know very exactly what some others might do in similar cases.
Meanwhile, above all things he should read classic fiction, abstaining
entirely from "Wild West Weeklies" and the like. Mr. Harrington has a
taste for excitement, and would probably thrive on Scott, Cooper, or
Poe. Let him read the Leather Stocking Tales if he loves pioneers and
frontier life. Not until after he has acquired a familiarity with the
methods of the best authors, and refined his imagination by a perusal of
their works, should he make attempts at writing outside his own
experience. He will then be able to produce work of a quality which
would surprise him now.

We are sorry to note that the Coyote's editorial columns are occupied by
a mere condensed copy of the United's standard recruiting circular. This
space might have been filled much more profitably with brief original
comments by the editor on the numerous exchanges which are listed in
another part of his paper. The paid advertising and subscription price
are not to be commended. Such things have no place in a truly amateur
paper. But continued membership in the United will doubtless fill Mr.
Harrington with the genuine amateur spirit, and cause The Coyote to
become a worthy successor to its older namesake.

DOWDELL'S BEARCAT for October is a modest but very promising little
paper, mostly composed of amateur notes and brief reviews. The editor
has interest in his work, and fluency in his language, foundations on
which a more elaborate structure may some day be erected. One feature
open to criticism is Mr. Dowdell's sudden change in his editorial column
from the usual first person plural to the third person singular. It
would be better to save "The Old Bear" and his interesting chat, for a
separate column. The typography of Dowdell's Bearcat is not perfect, but
may be expected to improve from issue to issue.

THE EMISSARY for July is a National paper, but contains the work of
several United members. Of the publication itself we need not stop to
speak. Mr. Reading, though only eighteen years of age, is an editor and
printer of the highest grade, and has produced an issue which will be
long remembered in the amateur world.

"Ausonius, the Nature-Lover", by Edward H. Cole, is a pleasing and
judicious appreciation of a later Latin poet, showing how a bard of the
decaying Roman Empire approached in certain passages the spirit of
modern romanticism. Mr. Cole's translated extracts are beautifully
phrased, and his comment upon the subject well exhibits his wide and
careful scholarship. Articles of this quality are rarely found in the
amateur press, and it will be interesting to note what effect their more
frequent appearance would have upon the literary tone of the

"To Sappho", by Olive G. Owen, is a lyrical poem of much merit, yet
having a defective line. Why, we wonder, did the author see fit to leave
two necessary syllables out of the third line of the opening verse?

"Lamb o' Mine", by Dora M. Hepner, is probably the most attractive bit
of verse in the magazine. The negro dialect is inimitable, and the
consoling spirit of the old black "mammy" fairly radiates from the
lines. Metrically, the piece is faultless, and we wish its author were a
more frequent contributor to the amateur journals.

Miss von der Heide's two poems, "The Mill Mother", and "Greeting",
express admirably the sentiments of pathos and natural beauty,
respectively. Personally, we prefer "Greeting".

Mr. Campbell's lines on "Huerta's Finish" are distinctly below the usual
standard of this talented writer's work. The metre is satisfactory, but
the humor is somewhat strained, and the pun in the last line based on a
mispronunciation of the old Indian's name. "Wehr-ta" is probably the
correct sound, rather than "Hurt-a".

THE INSPIRATION for January must be judged strictly by its quality; not
its quantity. Pinkney C. Grissom, a very young amateur, cheers us
greatly with his article on "Smiles", while Miss von der Heide's
microscopic story, "A Real Victory", is indeed a literary treat. We
trust that the editor's threat of discontinuance may not be realized.

THE KANSAN for July reaches us at a late date through the kindness of
Mr. Daas. In this magazine the Sunflower Club of Bazine makes its formal
debut, being ushered into amateur society by means of a pleasing and
well-written article from the pen of Miss Hoffman. The informal
"Exchange Comment" is a charitable and generally delightful department,
whose anonymity we rather regret. The Editorial pages are brilliant in
their justification of the United's sunny spirit, as contrasted with the
National's forbidding frigidity.

THE OLYMPIAN for September-February well sustains the lofty traditions
of that magazine. Mr. Cole defines with considerable precision his
latest editorial policy and his true attitude toward the United,
revealing only the more strongly, however, his remarkable and
ineradicable prejudice against our association in favor of the National.
"Evening Prayer", by Rheinhart Kleiner, is a poem of great beauty and
real worth, couched in the alternating iambic pentameter and trimeter
which this poet seems to have made his own particular medium of
expression. Mr. Kleiner is rapidly assuming a very high rank among
amateur poets.

"The Public Library", by Eloise N. Griffith, is a delightful and
appreciative reminiscence of quiet hours of lettered joy.

"The Play Hour", consisting of two clever bits of metre dedicated to a
very young amateur, appears in a collection of short and sprightly
pieces signed by the Senior Editor himself. It is difficult,
nevertheless, to imagine the dignified Olympian Zeus as the author.
Though the second of these tuneful rhymes is apparently written in the
"simplified" spelling now so popular among certain amateur editors, a
closer inspection reveals the fact that the spelling is merely made
juvenile to suit the subject. After all, however, simplified spelling
and baby-talk are but little removed from each other. The Reviewers'
Club is in this issue represented by both editors, whose criticisms are
as usual just and illuminating.

PROMETHEUS for September-November is a journal of unusual literary and
artistic value, edited by our poet-laureate, Miss Olive G. Owen. The
paper well lives up to its sub-title, "A Magazine of Aspirations Dreamed
into Reality". Mr. William H. Greenfield, the honored founder of the
United, claims the first page with a graceful Pindaric ode, "To My
Friend". "The Weaver of Dreams", by Edna G. Thorne, is a strikingly
well-written short story pervaded with a delicate pathos and expressing
a beautiful Christian philosophy. George W. Macauley, continuing to
concentrate his narrative powers on the Oriental tale, presents a
pleasing fable of old Moorish Spain, entitled "Ali Ahmed and the
Aqueduct". "The Ethics of Stimulation", by Maurice W. Moe, is an
eminently sound exposition of the relative evil of coffee and alcoholic
liquor as stimulants. "Partners", by H. A. Reading, exhibits great
ability on the part of its author, and is well calculated to arouse the
emotions of affectionate fathers and sons.

Miss Owen's work, scattered here and there throughout the magazine, is
naturally of the very first quality. It is hard to choose between the
two poems "Atthis, I Love Thee", and "To Elizabeth Knopf", but we
incline slightly toward the former. The sketches "The Visitor" and "Some
Things I Like in New York" are both delightful in their artistic

Critically analyzed, Prometheus may be classed as one of the most varied
and generally readable magazines of the season.

RED LETTER DAYS for October is the first of an informal individual paper
by George W. Macauley, representing the most purely personal phase of
amateur journalism. This issue is almost completely devoted to an
animated account of the "Red Letter Days" spent by Mr. Macauley last
summer with the amateurs who stopped to see him while on their way to
the various conventions. The author's style is familiar and pleasing,
though rather careless, and slightly marred by defects in spelling and
grammar. For instance, we are told of the caution which he and Mr.
Stoddard exercised in changing seats in a boat, since neither "could
swim, had the boat DID the usual thing." We are sorry that Mr. Macauley
has adopted "simplified" spelling, but it is an evil in which he is by
no means alone.

Red Letter Days, broadly considered, is a highly commendable paper; its
simplicity and lack of affectation are alone sufficient to win general

STRAY LEAVES for May-June is another paper which has arrived late and
indirectly. In this publication we note with disapproval some evidence
of pseudo-professionalism, such as a subscription rate and
advertisements, but we trust that Miss Draper will ere long acquire the
perfect amateur spirit. "Love Proved To Be the Master of Hate", a short
story by Frances Wood, is handicapped by its unwieldy title. "The
Triumph of Love", or some heading of equal brevity, would better suit
it. Indications of immaturity are here and there perceptible, and at the
very beginning there is an inexplicable mass of hyphenation. However,
the tale is undeniably of considerable merit, conveying a pleasing
picture of jealousy overcome.

The Editorial department might be improved by a judicious copying of the
best amateur models. The reference to anti-Suffrage and Suffrage as "two
vital questions" is hardly permissible; these are the two sides of only
one question.

"Thinkers", by G. D., is really excellent as an essay, despite the
awkwardness of style.

The Bermuda letter is highly interesting in its descriptions, but
painfully unscholarly in its phraseology. We here behold a case of real
talent obscured by want of literary polish, and hope that F. A. B.,
whoever he or she may be, will profit by his or her connection with the

Stray Leaves has great possibilities, and will doubtless prove one of
the leading papers of amateur journalism in times to come.

THE UNITED OFFICIAL QUARTERLY for January hardly lives up to the
artistic standard set by the first number, though it contains much
valuable matter. Herbert B. Darrow pleads very ably for the personal
acknowledgement of amateur papers received, while Paul J. Campbell
writes convincingly on the true value of amateur journalism. Pres.
Hepner, in the concluding article, opposes with considerable vigor the
Hoffman policy of issuing co-operative magazines. We are not, however,
inclined entirely to agree with our executive's conclusions. The
co-operative journal is practically the only adequate medium of
expression for the amateur of limited means, and most of the later
journals of this class, of which the Official Quarterly is itself an
example, have been of excellent quality. It is perhaps too much to
expect the average President, encumbered with a host of other duties, to
conduct this work, but in any event some suitable official should be
delegated for that purpose. The association should not lightly abandon a
policy which made the preceding administration one of the most brilliant
and successful in years.

THE WOODBEE for January exhibits amateur journalism at its best. Mrs.
Anne Tillery Renshaw opens the magazine with a pleasing poem, dedicated
to the Woodbees, which combines simplicity of diction with regularity of
metre. Those decasyllabic quatrains are a decided departure from Mrs.
Renshaw's usual style, which explains the slight lack of fluency. The
last line of the third stanza contains a redundant syllable, a defect
which might be corrected by the removal of the article before the word
"louder", or by the poetical contraction of "sympathy" into "symp'thy".
The third line of the fourth stanza possesses only four feet. This may
be an intentional shortening to give rhetorical effect, yet it mars none
the less the symmetry of the verse.

"The Spiritual Significance of the Stars", by Leo Fritter, is the
leading feature of the issue. The inspiring influence of astronomical
study on the cultivated intellect is here shown to best advantage. Mr.
Fritter traces the slow unfolding of celestial knowledge to the world,
and points out the divinity of that mental power which enables man to
discern the vastness of the universe, and to comprehend the complex
principles by which it is governed. In the laws of the heavens he finds
the prototype of all human laws, and the one perfect model for human
institutions. Mr. Fritter's essay is eminently worthy of a place among
the classics of amateur journalism.

"A Morn in June", by Harriet E. Daily, is a short and dainty poem of
excellent quality, though marred by a reprehensible attempt to rhyme
"grass" with "task". As we mentioned in connection with another amateur
poem, a final consonant on one of two otherwise rhyming syllables
utterly destroys the rhyme. "We Are Builders All", by Elizabeth M.
Ballou, is a graceful allegory based on the temple of Solomon. Edna
Mitchell Haughton's character sketch, "The Family Doctor", is just and
well drawn.

"A Dog for Comfort", by Edna von der Heide, is a meritorious poem of
gloomy impressiveness. We cannot quite account for the defective second
line of the fourth stanza, since Miss von der Heide is so able a
poetess. Perhaps it is intentional, but we wish the line were of normal
decasyllabic length. "My Grandmother's Garden", by Ida Cochran Haughton,
is a truly delightful bit of reminiscent description which deserves more
than one reading. "A Little Girl's Three Wishes", by Mrs. R. M. Moody,
is entertaining in quality and correct in metre. It is a relief to
behold amidst the formless cacophony of modern poetry such a regular,
old-fashioned specimen of the octosyllabic couplet. "Two Little
Waterwheels", by Dora M. Hepner, is an exquisite idyllic sketch. In the
second paragraph we read of a channel "damned" up by a projecting root
of a tree; which somewhat surprises us, since we did not know that
tree-roots are accustomed to use profane language. Perhaps the author
intended to write "dammed".

The editorials are brief. In one of them it is stated that the paper is
submitted without fear to the critics AND Eddie Cole. In view of Mr.
Cole's scholarly and conscientious critical work, we hope that no
reflection upon him is there intended.

                                                  H. P. LOVECRAFT,
                             Chairman, Department of Public Criticism.


    Let other bards with nobler talents sing
    The beauties of the mild, maturer spring.
    My rustic Muse on bleaker times must dwell,
    When Earth, but new-escap'd from winter's spell,
    Uncloth'd, unshelter'd, unadorn'd, is seen;
    Stript of white robes, nor yet array'd in green.
    Hard blows the breeze, but with a warmer force.
    The melting ground, the brimming watercourse,
    The wak'ning air, the birds' returning flight,
    The longer sunshine, and the shorter night,
    Arcturus' beams, and Corvus' glitt'ring rays,
    Diffuse a promise of the genial days.
    Yon muddy remnant of the winter snow
    Shrinks humbly in the equinoctial glow,
    Whilst in the fields precocious grass-blades peep
    Above the earth so lately wrapt in sleep.
    What sweet, elusive odor fills the soil,
    To rouse the farmer to his yearly toil!
    Though thick the clouds, and bare the maple bough,
    With what gay song he guides the cumbrous plough!
    In him there stirs, like sap within the tree,
    The joyous call to new activity:
    The outward scene, however dull and drear,
    Takes on a splendor from the inward cheer.
    Prophetic month! Would that I might rehearse
    Thy hidden beauties in sublimer verse:
    Thy glorious youth, thy vigor all unspent,
    Thy stirring winds, of spring and winter blent.
    Summer brings blessings of enervate kind;
    Thy joys, O March, are ecstasies of mind.
    In June we revel in the bees' soft hum,
    But March exalts us with the bliss to come.

                                --H. P. LOVECRAFT.

                        THE UNITED AMATEUR


 VOLUME XIV         GEORGETOWN, ILL., MAY, 1915.          NUMBER 5


THE BLARNEY STONE for January-February is replete with good literature,
amidst which may particularly be mentioned Arthur Goodenough's
harmonious poem, "God Made Us All of Clay". The theme is not new, but
appears advantageously under Mr. Goodenough's delicate treatment.

M. W. Hart's short story, "The Redemption", is intended to portray a
righteous transformation from conventional false morality to true
Christian life, but in reality presents a very repulsive picture of
bestial atavism. The meaner character was not "reformed by mercy", but
merely withheld from wholesale vice by isolation. Mr. Hart is so plainly
in earnest when he relates this dismal tale as a sermon, that we must
not be too harsh in questioning his taste or condemning his free
standards of civilized morality; yet we doubt seriously if stories or
essays of this type should appear in the press, and especially in the
amateur press. Two or three technical points demand attention. The word
"diversified" on page 2 might better be "diverse", while "environment"
on page 4, could well be replaced by "condition" or "state". On page 5
occurs the sentence "All intelligence ... were ... instinct". Obviously
the verb should be in the singular number to correspond with its
subject. Mr. Hart is developing a prose style of commendable dignity,
unusually free from the jarring touch of modern frivolity.

H. B. Scott is proving himself a finished scholar and a thoughtful
editor in his conduct of The Blarney Stone; his able essay on
"Personality" is eminently worthy of more than one perusal.

THE BOYS' HERALD for May presents us with a highly interesting account
of Robert Louis Stevenson's career as an amateur journalist, together
with a facsimile reproduction of the cover of "The Sunbeam Magazine",
Stevenson's hand-written periodical. The column of reminiscences,
containing letters from various old-time amateurs, is extremely
inspiring to the younger members, showing how persistently the amateur
spirit adheres to all who have truly acquired it. "Nita at the Passing
Show" is a witty and entertaining parody by Mr. Smith, illustrating the
theatrical hobby of Miss Gerner; one of the latest United recruits. The
Boys' Herald discharges a peculiar and important function in the life of
the associations, connecting the present with the past, and furnishing
us with just standards for comparison.

DOWDELL'S BEARCAT for December opens with a Christmas poem of great
beauty and harmonious construction from the pen of Dora M. Hepner. The
thoughts and images are without exception lofty and well selected, and
the only possible defect is the attempt to rhyme "come" with "run" in
the last stanza. Edward H. Cole's review of a recent booklet in memory
of Miss Susan Brown Robbins, a former amateur, is more than a criticism.
It is a rare appreciation of the bonds of mutual esteem and respect
which grow up amongst the congenial members of the press associations.
Mr. Cole is peculiarly well fitted to deal with his subject, and no
praise is needed beyond the statement that the review is characteristic
of him.

DOWDELL'S BEARCAT for January marks the metamorphosis of that periodical
into a newspaper. With youthful ambition, Mr. Dowdell is resolved to
furnish the United with the latest items of interest concerning
amateurs. While the general style of the paper is fluent and pleasing,
we believe that "Bruno" might gain much force of expression through the
exercise of a little more care and dignity in his prose. For instance,
many colloquial contractions like "don't", "won't", or "can't" might be
eliminated, while such slang phrases as "neck of the woods", "make
good", "somewhat off", or "bunch of yellow-backs" were better omitted.

DOWDELL'S BEARCAT for March is notable for an increase in size. "A Visit
to Niagara Falls", by Andrew R. Koller, is an intelligent and animated
piece of description, which promises well for the development of its
author. What looseness of construction exists may be charged to youth.
"An Ambition and a Vision", by Nettie A. Hartman, is a neat and
grammatically written little sketch, probably autobiographical,
describing the evolution of an amateur. Greater cultivation of
rhetorical taste would improve Miss Hartman's style, and we are certain
that it possesses a fundamental merit which will make improvement an
easy matter. With the usual regret we observe an instance of "simple
spelling", which Mr. Dowdell, who does not fall into this vice himself,
has evidently overlooked in editing. The news items this month are
timely and vivacious, exhibiting "Bruno" at his best.

THE LAKE BREEZE for March inaugurates a very welcome revival of the
United's foremost news sheet, now to be issued monthly. Mr. Daas is so
active an amateur, and so closely connected with the development of the
association, that his ably edited journal has almost the authority of an
official organ.

The editorial entitled "Ashes and Roses" is a powerful and convincing
reply to a rather weak attack lately made on the United by a member of a
less active association. Mr. Daas uses both sense and sarcasm to great
advantage, leaving but little ground for his opponent to occupy.

"The Amateur Press" is a well conducted column of contributed reviews,
among which Mrs. A. M. Adams' eulogy of Mrs. Griffith's essay in Outward
Bound is perhaps the best. "What is Amateur Journalism?", by "El
Imparcial", is a sketch of the various types of amateurs, with a
suggestion of the ideal type. While free from glaring defects, the essay
gives no really new information, and brings out no strikingly original
ideas. "Some Objections to Moving Pictures", by Edmund L. Shehan,
presents a strong array of evidence against one of the most popular and
instructive amusements of today. We do not believe, however, that the
objections here offered are vital. The moving picture has infinite
possibilities for literary and artistic good when rightly presented, and
having achieved a permanent place, seems destined eventually to convey
the liberal arts to multitudes hitherto denied their enjoyment. Mr.
Shehan's prose style is clear and forceful, capable of highly
advantageous development.

LITERARY BUDS for April is the first number of a paper issued by the new
Athenaeum Club of Journalism, Harvey, Ill. Though the text of most of
the contributions has suffered somewhat through a slight misapprehension
concerning the editing, the issue is nevertheless pleasing and

"A la Rudyard", a poem by George A. Bradley, heads the contents. While
hampered by some of the heaviness natural to authors of school age, Mr.
Bradley has managed to put into his lines a laudable enthusiasm and
genuine warmth. The editorial column is well conducted, the second item
being especially graphic, though the "superdreadnought" metaphor seems
rather forced. Clara Inglis Stalker, the enthusiastic and capable
educator through whose efforts the club was formed, gives a brief
account of her organization, under the title "The History of an
Eight-Week-Old", and in a prose style of uniformly flowing and
attractive quality. "A Love Song", Miss Stalker's other contribution, is
a poem of delicate imagery and unusual metre. "Our Paring Knife", by
Gertrude Van Lanningham, is a short sketch with an aphorism at the end.
Though this type of moral lesson is a little trite, Miss Van Lanningham
shows no mean appreciation of literary form, and will, when she has
emerged from the "bud" stage, undoubtedly blossom into a graphic and
sympathetic writer. "Co-Education", by Caryl W. Dempsey, is an
interesting but only partially convincing article on a topic of
considerable importance. The author, being enthusiastically in favor of
the practice, enumerates its many benefits; yet the arguments are
decidedly biased. While the advantage of co-education to young ladies
is made quite obvious, it remains far from clear that young men receive
equal benefit. A desirable decline of cliques and hazing might, it is
true, result from the admission of women to men's universities, but the
young men would undoubtedly lose much in earnest, concentrated energy
and dignified virility through the presence of the fair. The experiment,
radical at best, has failed more than once. The style of this essay is
slightly wanting in ease and continuity, yet possesses the elements of
force. "The Traitor", by Agnes E. Fairfield, is a short story of
artistic development but questionable sentiment. The present fad of
peace-preaching should not be allowed to influence a writer of sense
into glorifying a socialistic, unpatriotic fanatic who refuses to uphold
the institutions that his fathers before him created with their toil,
blood, and sacrifice. It is not the right of the individual to judge of
the necessity of a war; no layman can form an intelligent idea of the
dangers that may beset his fatherland. The man is but a part of the
state, and must uphold it at any cost. We are inclined to wonder at Miss
Fairfield's mention of a king, when the name Phillipe La Roque so
clearly proclaims the hero a Frenchman. France, be it known, has been a
republic for some little time. "Penny in the Slot", by Vaughn Flannery,
possesses a humor that is pleasing and apparently quite spontaneous. We
should like to behold more of Mr. Flannery's efforts in this field.

Viewed in its entirety, allowance being made for its present essentially
juvenile nature, Literary Buds may be regarded as a pronounced success.
That it will mature in consonance with the club which it represents is
certain, and each future issue can be relied upon to surpass its

OLE MISS' for March, edited by Mr. and Mrs. J. W. Renshaw, easily falls
into the very front rank of the season's amateur journals. In this
number Mr. Joseph W. Renshaw makes his initial appearance before the
members of the United, producing a very favorable impression with his
pure, attractive prose. The introduction, credited in another column to
Mr. Renshaw, is of graceful and pleasing character, recalling the
elusively beautiful atmosphere of the Old South which is too soon
passing away.

"The Humble Swallow", an anonymous essay, praises with singularly
delicate art a feathered creature whose charms lie not on the surface.
The concluding paragraph, condemning the wanton slaughter of this winged
friend to mankind, is especially apt at a time of hysterical peace
agitation. While the well meaning advocates of peace call wildly upon
men to abandon just warfare against destructive and malignant enemies,
they generally pass over without thought or reproof the wholesale murder
of these innocent little birds, who never did nor intended harm to
anyone. "A Higher Recruiting Standard", by Mrs. Renshaw, is an able
exposition of the newer and loftier type of ideals prevailing in the
United. Our association has never lacked numbers, but would undoubtedly
be the better for an increased standard of scholarship such as is here
demanded. Mrs. Renshaw's work as a recruiter is in keeping with her
policy, and this, together with Mr. Moe's work amongst the English
teachers, seems destined to raise the United far above its lesser
contemporaries. "An A. J. Suggestion", by Mr. Renshaw, deals ingeniously
and logically with the always difficult problem of selecting a printer.
Though evidently written quite independently, it ably seconds Paul J.
Campbell's original suggestion in the UNITED AMATEUR. The advantages of
having one printer for all amateur work are many, and the well presented
opinions of Mr. Renshaw should aid much in securing this desirable

The poetry in Ole Miss' is all by Mrs. Renshaw, and therefore of first
quality. "Some One I Know" is a lightly amatory piece of tuneful rhythm.
"Night of Rain" gives a peculiarly pleasing aspect to a type of scene
not usually celebrated in verse. The only jarring note is the rather
mundane metaphor which compares the trees to a "beautiful mop". Though
Mrs. Renshaw holds unusual ideas regarding the use of art in poetry, we
contend that this instance of rhetorical frigidity is scarcely
permissible. It is too much like Sir Richard Blackmore's description of
Mount Aetna, wherein he compares a volcanic eruption to a fit of colic;
or old Ben Johnson's battle scene in the fifth act of "Catiline", where
he represents the sun perspiring. "Man of the Everyday" is a noble
panegyric on the solid, constructive virtues of the ordinary citizen,
portraying very graphically the need of his presence in a world that
heeds him but little.

Considered in all its aspects, Ole Miss' is a notable contribution to
amateur literature, and one which we hope to see oft repeated.

THE PASSING SHOW for February is the "second annual production" of an
excellent though informal little paper by Nita Edna Gerner, a new member
of the United, and the daughter of an old-time amateur. Miss Gerner is
an enthusiast on all matters pertaining to the theatre, and has
impressed her hobby very strongly on the pages of her publication.

The dominant theme of the current issue is that of amateur romance,
exhibiting the press associations in the role of matrimonial agencies.
"The Twos-ers", by Edwin Hadley Smith, is a long list of couples who
became wedded through acquaintanceships formed in amateur journalism.
This catalogue, recording 26 marriages and engagements from the
earliest ages to the present, must have cost its author much time and
research. "A Romance of Amateur Journalism", by Edward F. Daas, is a
very brief statement of facts in unornamented style. "An 'Interstate'
Romance", by Leston M. Ayres, is more elaborate in treatment, and
displays an easy, colloquial style.

The editorial column, headed "Through the Opera-Glasses", is bright and
informal. We note with regret that Miss Gerner has seen fit to adopt the
popular mutilated orthography of the day, a fad which we trust she will
discard in time.

PEARSON'S PET for April is a bright and attractive little paper
throughout. "Burnin' Off" is a delightful specimen of dialect verse
which conveys a graphic image. We have never witnessed such an
agricultural function as Mr. Pearson describes, but can gain from his
clever lines a vivid idea of its weird impressiveness. "How I Met Elbert
Hubbard" is narrated in commendably easy prose, which same may be said
of the sketch or editorial entitled "Broke Loose Again". Mr. Pearson is
assuredly a competent exponent of amateur journalism's lighter and less
formal side.

THE PIPER for May is as pleasing and meritorious as the first number,
both in its verse and its prose. "The Modern Muse", exhibiting Mr.
Kleiner in a somewhat humorous mood, is very forceful in its satire on
the altered ideals of the poetical fraternity, but is marred by the
noticeably imperfect rhyming of "garret" and "carrot", it is barely
possible that according to the prevailing New York pronunciation this
rhyme is not so forced as it appears, but we are of New England, and
accustomed to hearing the sounds more classically differentiated. The
defect is trivial at most, and mentioned here only because Mr. Kleiner
professes such a rigid adherence to the law of perfect rhyming. "The
Books I Used to Read" is the most delightful appreciation of juvenile
literature that has appeared in amateur journalism within our memory.
There are few of us in whom this poem will fail to arouse glad
reminiscences. "Spring" is a pleasing poem on a subject which though not
exactly new, is nevertheless susceptible to an infinite variety of
treatment. The four stanzas are highly creditable, both sentimentally
and metrically. Apart from the poetry, criticism seems the dominant
element in The Piper, and it would be difficult indeed to find a more
lucid and discerning series of reviews. Mr. Kleiner's unvarying advocacy
of correct metre and perfect rhyming is refreshing to encounter in this
age of laxity and license. Perhaps he is a little stern in his
condemnation of the "allowable" rhymes of other days, especially in view
of his recent "garret-carrot" attempt, yet we admit that there is much
to be said in favor of his attitude.

THE PLAINSMAN for February contains a gruesome moral tale by Ricardo
Santiago, entitled "The Bell of Huesca". It is proper to remark here,
that an important sentence was omitted at the top of page 3. The passage
should read "'Sire, thy bell has no clapper!' 'Thy head shall be the
clapper'; said the king, and he sent him to the block" etc. Whatever may
be said of the aptness of the allegory, it is evident that Mr. Santiago
possesses the foundations of a pure and forcible prose style, and a
commendable sense of unity in narration and development of climax. This
story is undoubtedly worthy of its distinction as winner in The
Plainsman's post-card contest.

THE SPECTATOR for June-July, 1914, though somewhat trite in title, is
the first number of a magazine notable for its quality. Walter John Held
is without doubt one of the most enterprising youths who have ever
joined the ranks of the association, though his views on paid
subscriptions and advertisements show his still imperfect acquisition of
the true amateur spirit. Mr. Held mistakes commercial progress for
artistic development, believing that the aim of every amateur in his
ascent toward professional authorship is to write remunerative matter.
He therefore considers a publisher's advancement to be best shown in
ability to extract an odd penny now and then from a few subscribers who
really subscribe only out of courtesy. We wish that Mr. Held might come
to consider amateur journalism in its higher aspects; as a medium for
improvement in literature and taste; an aid to the cultivation of the
art for its own sake in the manner of gentlemen, not of cheap tradesmen.
The selection of commercial prosperity as a goal will ruin any true
literary progress, and dull the artistic aspiration of the student as
soon as his mercenary instincts shall have been satisfied. Besides,
there is really no sound business principle in the so-called "sale" of
little papers. No youth could ever found or sustain a real magazine of
substantial price and more than nominal circulation. The various
ten-cents-a-year journals which some "amateurs" try to edit are no
logical steps toward actually professional publishing. The latter comes
only after literary skill has been attained, and literary skill must at
first be developed without regard for immediate monetary profit.

But the merit of Mr. Held's work is none the less unusual. "The Frank
Friend" gives evidence of considerable critical ability, despite the
touch of arrogance, apologized for in a latter issue, shown in imperfect
appreciation of Mr. Edward H. Cole's phenomenally pure English. Mr.
Held, in his enthusiasm for "local color", forgets that all the
English-speaking world is heir to one glorious language which should be
the same from Cape Colony to California or New York to New Zealand.

The only poem in this issue is Olive G. Owen's "How Prayest Thou?", a
piece of true sentiment and artistic beauty. The only fault is metrical;
the use of the word "trial" as a monosyllable. This tendency to slur
over words appears to be Miss Owen's one poetical vice, as exemplified
in the imperfect rendering of "jewel", "realness", and "cruelness"

THE SPECTATOR for August-September is marred by a resurrection of the
ever odious topic of Consolidation, but is otherwise of remarkable
merit. Elbert Hubbard, a professional advertiser and writer of
considerable popularity in certain circles, relates in an interesting
way the history of his most widely known literary effort. Mr. Hubbard's
prose style is direct and pointed, though rather abrupt and barren. "The
Midnight Extra", by Dora M. Hepner, is a humorous short story of unusual
merit, leading from a well created atmosphere of terror to a clever and
unexpected anticlimax.

THE SPECTATOR for October-November contains much matter of very
substantial worth. "Creation", by Edward R. Taylor, Dean of the
University of California, is a beautiful bit of poetical sentiment and
harmonious metre, while "Half-past-twelve", by Miss von der Heide, is
likewise of great merit, both in thought and in structure. We have
lately been told that many apparent metrical defects which we have noted
are really no more than typographical errors, wherefore we will here
content ourselves by expressing the belief that the third line of the
second stanza of "Half-past-twelve" was originally written thus:

    "Across the dark their shrilling laughter floats".

This rendering would do away with two seeming errors in the printed
copy. Olive G. Owen's "Battle-Prayer" is powerful in its appeal and
faultless in its construction. Of marked interest is "Divine
Self-Tower", a brief essay by Takeshi Kanno, the Japanese philosopher.
These words, in a tongue foreign to the writer, contain material for
more than a moment's thought.

"The Frank Friend" is in this number as interesting a critic as before.
The passage of four months has tempered his undue severity; indeed, we
fear that he has in certain cases veered a little too far toward the
other extreme. The most ambitious review is that of "Pig-pen Pete", by
Elbert Hubbard, which gives Mr. Held an opportunity to display his
powers to great advantage. Of the two editorials, that entitled "Life"
is the more notable. Though its philosophy must necessarily be rather
artificial, considering Mr. Held's age, it is none the less a very
artistic and generally creditable piece of composition. The cover of The
Spectator would be less Hearst-like if the fulsome announcements were

TOLEDO AMATEUR for April greets us in altered form, as a two-column
paper. Having given over the previous issue to the credentials of new
members, Mr. Porter very justly claims a goodly space for himself this
month, commenting ably on the affairs and activities of the

"Camp Columbia", by James J. Hennessey, gives an interesting outline of
the American army routine in Cuba during the years 1907 and 1908.
"Observations of an Outsider", by Mrs. Porter, mother of the editor,
sheds light on amateur journalism from a hitherto unusual angle. We note
with pleasure that Toledo Amateur remains immune from the destructive
bacillus of deformed spelling.

THE WOODBEE for April contains "The Cycle Eternal", a lucid
philosophical article by Samuel James Schilling, wherein is described
the dispersal and new combinations of the organic cells that compose the
body of mankind. By the perpetual reincorporation or reincarnation of
these cells in all other forms of matter, man is shown to be immortal,
and in the closest degree akin to every natural object surrounding him.
His outward form is merely one transient phase of a ceaseless
rearrangement of atoms; he is simply one aspect of infinite and eternal
Nature. Save for a few slight traces of rhetorical awkwardness, Mr.
Schilling's expository style is remarkable for its force and clearness;
the arrangement of the essay into Prologue, Body, and Epilogue is
especially favorable to comprehensiveness.

While Mr. Schilling deals with mankind in the abstract, Miss Mabel
McKee, in "A Gift from the City", presents a concrete example of the
workings of the human heart. Her subject and treatment are not
startlingly original, but such themes lose very little when repeated in
pure English and attractive style. The story is distinctly pleasing, and
artistically developed throughout.

A notable feature of the April Woodbee is Miss Hepner's fervent and
unstudied tribute to Mr. Leo Fritter, candidate for the United's
Presidency. Though the editorial is bestrewn with slang and distinctly
familiar in construction, it produces upon the reader an impression of
absolute sincerity and intensity of feeling which more elaborate
rhetoric might fail so forcibly to convey. Great as is the tribute,
however, we feel that Mr. Fritter is worthy of it, and must congratulate
him on having such support. Our own efforts for his election, appearing
in The Conservative, seem slight in comparison. The only verse in this
number is "My Shrine", by Harriet E. Daily. Though containing an attempt
to rhyme the words "time" and "shrine", this ethereal little poem of
spring is of great attractiveness.

ZEPPELIN for March, a publication emanating from the pen of Mr. O. S.
Hackett of Canton, Pennsylvania, is scarcely as formidable and menacing
as its name, being distinctly friendly and fraternal in its general
tone. Mr. Hackett's prose has obviously not received its final
polishing, but it is so filled with aspiration, ambition, and enthusiasm
for the cause of amateur journalism, that it evidently requires only
such development as is obtainable from a closer study of grammar and
rhetoric, and a wider perusal of classic English literature. In one
matter Mr. Hackett seems to harbor a wrong impression. The name
"credential", in the language of the amateurs, is not applied to all
literary productions, but only to those which are submitted by the new
recruits as evidence of their educational fitness for membership in the
association they seek to enter.

Joseph R. Schaffman's poem, "Think of Times Yet Coming", shows the same
innate sense of rhyme and metre that has distinguished his earlier work.
Only the conclusion lacks perfect ease and naturalness. Mr. Schaffman
has so far confined his Muse to optimistic opinions and moral maxims; we
hope that in the near future he will vary his efforts and attempt to
reflect more of his general reading in his poetry. The field is large
for one so happily favored with the gift of song.

                                                  H. P. LOVECRAFT,

                   THE UNITED AMATEUR

 Official Organ of the United Amateur Press Association



_The Alabamian_ for Spring is a magazine unique amongst the publications
of the United. Devoted wholly to poetry, it contains some of the finest
short verses to appear this season, whilst even the crudest part of its
contents possesses some undoubted merit. The opening poem, a delightful
and ornate nature sonnet entitled "The Brook," professes to be a
translation from the Spanish, a claim borne out by the use of the word
"jasmine" in a place where the metre throws the accent anomalously on
the last syllable, as in the corresponding Spanish word "jazmin." The
sentiment of the whole is exquisite, and every image exhibits striking
beauty. It is to be regretted that both author and translator are
suffered to remain unrevealed. "A Poet's Songs," by Miss Owen, is a
powerful and well-written tribute to her fellow-bards both ancient and
modern. In Coralie Austin's "Tribute to Our President," dedicated to
Miss Hepner, we may discern the native talent of the true poet, slightly
obscured by the crudities of youth. The opening line appears to lack a
syllable, though this may be due only to the printer's omission of the
article before the word "laurel." In stanza 1, line 2, the trisyllabic
word "violets" appears as a dissyllable. This contraction is a rather
natural one, and must not be criticised too sternly. Indeed, there is
here a sort of middle zone betwixt error and allowableness, wherein no
decisive precepts may be laid down. Words like "radiant," "difference,"
and so forth, are nearly always slurred into dissyllables, and we were
ourselves guilty of an even greater liberalism when we wrote that line
in "Quinsnicket Park" which reads:

    "The bending boughs a _diamond_ wealth amass."

But in Miss Austin's second stanza occur two errors of graver nature.
"For only her alone" is a lamentably tautological line which requires
the omission either of "only" or "alone," and the substitution of some
word to carry on the flow of metre. The attempted rhyming of "alone" and
"home" is obviously incorrect. The dissimilar consonantal sounds render
agreement impossible. This "m-n" rhyme, as we may call it, is becoming
alarmingly frequent in careless modern verse, and must ever be avoided
with utmost diligence. In the third stanza we discover a marked error in
maintenance of number. We are told that the "years go" and that at "its
end" we will lay trophies, etc. This mistake may be obviated with ease,
by changing "years go" to "year goes." Miss Austin's poetic talent is
great, but shows the want of precise cultivation. "Mother o' Mine," by
Miss von der Heide, is a beautiful piece of anapaestic verse whose metre
and sentiment alike attract the reader. "Parsifal," by Miss Owen, shows
satisfactory depth of thought, but is rather modern in metre. From the
conformation of the last line of the first stanza, we are led to believe
that the word "viol" is contracted to a monosyllable, or, to make a
rather reprehensible pun, that "vi-ol" has here a "vile" pronunciation.
"Frailties of Life," by Editor Baxley, shows a remarkable system of
extended rhyming, coupled with a noticeable lack of metrical harmony.
Mr. Baxley's technique is such that we believe his improvement would be
best effected by a repeated perusal of the older poets, whose classical
exactitude of form would teach him rhythm by rote, so to speak. Let him
cultivate his ear for metre, even though forced to acquire it through
nonsensical jingles. We believe that many a child has obtained from his
"Mother Goose" a love of correct rhythm which has later helped him in
serious poetical efforts. "Paid Back," a short, powerful poem by Miss
von der Heide, concludes an excellent and praiseworthy issue.

_Aurora_ for April is a delightful individual leaflet by Mrs. Ida C.
Haughton, exclusively devoted to poetical matters. The first poem,
"Aurora," is truly exquisite as a verbal picture of the summer dawn,
though rather rough-hewn metrically. Most open to criticism of all the
features of this piece, is the dissimilarity of the separate stanzas. In
a stanzaic poem the method of rhyming should be identical in every
stanza, yet Mrs. Haughton has here wavered between couplets and
alternate rhymes. In the opening stanza we behold first a quatrain, then
a quadruple rhyme. In the second we find couplets only. In the third a
quatrain is followed by an arrangement in which two rhyming lines
enclose a couplet, while in the final stanza the couplet again reigns
supreme. The metre also lacks uniformity, veering from iambic to
anapaestic form. These defects are, of course, merely technical, not
affecting the beautiful thought and imagery of the poem; yet the
sentiment would seem even more pleasing were it adorned with the garb of
metrical regularity. "On the Banks of Old Wegee" is a sentimental poem
of considerable merit, which suffers, however, from the same faults that
affect "Aurora." Most of these defects might have been obviated when the
stanzas were composed, by a careful counting of syllables in each line
and a constant consultation of some one, definite plan of rhyming. We
must here remark an error made in the typewritten copy of the original
manuscript, and reproduced in the finished magazine, for which, of
course, neither the poetical art of the author nor the technique of the
printer is to blame. In the second stanza, lines 6 and 7 were originally

    "How oft I've essayed to be
    A fisherman bold, but my luck never told."

"Anent the Writing of Poetry" is a short prose essay, in which many
valuable truths are enunciated. Mrs. Haughton has evidently taken up the
poetic art with due seriousness, and considering the marked talent shown
in the first issue of her paper, we may justly expect to behold a
wonderfully rapid development in the near future.

_The Badger_ for June fulfills the promise of January, and shows us that
the present year has given the United a new and serious periodical of
satisfying quality. In the "Introductory," Mr. George Schilling
discusses in lively fashion the latest topics of the day, thereby
atoning for our own tedious "Finale." "Ready Made," by Samuel J.
Schilling, is a thoughtful presentation of a lamentable fact. The evil
which he portrays is one that has rendered the masses of America almost
wholly subservient to the vulgar press; to be led astray into every sort
of radicalism through low tricks of sensationalism. Our own poetical
attempt, entitled "Quinsnicket Park," contains 112 lines, and spoils
three and a half otherwise excellent pages. It is probable that but few
have had the fortitude to read it through, or even to begin it, hence we
will pass over its defects in merciful silence. "What May I Own?" by
A. W. Ashby, is an able sociological essay which displays considerable
familiarity with the outward aspects of economic conditions. Mr. Ashby,
condemning the present system practiced in the coal and iron industries,
declares that on moral grounds he had rather be a brewer or purveyor of
liquor than a coal magnate or an ironmaster. In this statement,
evidently born of hasty fervour, Mr. Ashby forgets the basic character
of the two types of industry which he contrasts. Beneath the liquor
traffic lies a foundation accursed by decency and reason. The entire
industry is designed to pander to a false craving whose gratification
lowers man in the scale of mental and physical evolution. The distiller
and vendor of rum is elementally the supreme foe of the human race, and
the most powerful, dangerous and treacherous factor in the defiance of
progress and the betrayal of mankind. His trade can never be improved or
purified, being itself a crime against Nature. On the other hand, the
coal and iron industries are, in their fundamental forms, desirable and
necessary adjuncts to an expanding civilization. Their present evils are
wholly alien to their essential principles, being connected only with
the uneasy industrialism of this age. These faults are not confined to
coal-mining and iron-working, but are merely those possessed in common
with all great industries. Joseph E. Shufelt's article on the European
war is an amazing outburst of socialism in its worst form. The idea that
this shocking carnage is the result of a deliberate plot of the ruling
classes of all the belligerents to destroy their labouring element is
wonderfully ludicrous in its extravagance. We are led to infer that
those best of friends, der Kaiser and his cousins George and Nicholas,
are merely pretending hostility in order to rid themselves of a
troublesome peasantry! We do not know what Mr. Shufelt has been reading
lately, but we hope that time may modify his ideas to such a degree that
he will turn his dignified style and pure English to some object worthy
of their employment.

_Dowdell's Bearcat_ for July marks the beginning of an unprecedented era
of improvement in the quality of that periodical. Having settled down to
the conventional 5◊7 size, it has now acquired a cover and an abundance
of pages which the editor informs us will never be lessened. The
influence of _The Olympian_ is perceptible in the _Bearcat_, and for his
taste in the selection of so worthy a model Mr. Dowdell is to be
commended. "When the Tape Broke" is the first article of the editorial
column, and well describes an example of collapsed activity which the
United should avoid. "A Runaway Horse," by Mrs. Ida C. Haughton, is a
brief and vivid sketch of a fatal accident. "Tragedy," an exquisite poem
by Emilie C. Holladay, deserves very favourable notice for the delicate
pathos of its sentiment, and perfect adaptation of the measure to the
subject. We may discern a few traces of immaturity in the handling of
the metre and in the presence of "allowable" rhymes. As elsewhere
stated, we personally approve and employ the old-fashioned "allowable"
rhyming sounds, but the best modern taste, as exemplified in the United
by its Laureate, Rheinhart Kleiner, demands absolute perfection in this
regard. As to the metre, we respectfully offer the following amended
second stanza as an example. It is absolutely uniform with the original
first stanza, which, of course, furnishes the model.

          The summer rains
          And autumn winds
    The snowdrop find yet standing;
          A petal gone,
          And all alone,
    Her tender roots expanding.

The remarkable poetical talent exhibited by Miss Holladay deserves a
cultivation that shall invest her productions with a technique of the
highest order. "The Dignity of Journalism," by ourselves, may be taken
by the reader as a sort of supplement to this Department. We there
enumerate in the abstract some of the precepts which we shall here apply
to individual writers. There are several misprints, which we hope will
not be taken as evidences of our bad spelling, and at the conclusion the
word "even" is omitted from the phrase which should read: "the
necessity, or _even_ the expediency." "June Journals" is an excellent
set of short reviews which display very favourably the critical ability
of Mr. Dowdell. The concluding notes on "Amateur Affairs" are brief, but
very interesting. The general excellence of _Dowdell's Bearcat_ excuses
the instances of imperfect proof-reading, which fault we are sure will
soon be eliminated.

_The Blarney Stone_ for March-April contains "Thoughts," a meritorious
poem by Chester P. Munroe. The tone of the piece is that of sentimental
and almost melancholy reverie, hence the metre is not quite uniform; but
a commendable absence of rough breaks lends a delightful flow to the
lines. We hope to behold further efforts from Mr. Munroe's pen. "The
Amateur's Creed," by Mrs. Renshaw, is written in the style of this
author's previous and now well-known poem, "A Symphony," and should do
much toward lifting the United upward to the highest literary ideals.

_The Blarney Stone_ for May-June has cast off all undue seriousness, and
teems with light and attractive matter concerning the recent Rocky Mount
convention. Some of the displays of wit and cleverness are very striking
and entertaining indeed, while no page departs so far from merit that it
may be justly adjudged as dull.

_The Boys' Herald_ for August is an issue of unusual elaborateness,
announcing the engagement of its editor, Mr. Edwin Hadley Smith, and
Miss Nita Edna Gerner of New York. Excellent portraits of the happy
couple follow the formal announcement, and Miss Gerner, now Associate
Editor, describes in an excellent prose style the romance which
culminated in the engagement. "Gerneriana," consisting mainly of a
reprint from an earlier issue, is an interesting account of the late
Richard Gerner, an old-time amateur, and father of the prospective
bride. This article is well supplemented by the reproductions of parts
of old amateur papers which adorn the back cover of the magazine. The
remainder of _The Boys' Herald_ is wholly statistical, dealing with the
amateur career of Mr. Smith. Few members of the association could
produce superior records of activity.

_The Brooklynite_ for April maintains the high standard set by the
previous number. "A Miracle," the opening poem, was composed by Alice L.
Carson during the course of a meeting of the Blue Pencil Club, yet
exhibits all the grace and harmony expected in a carefully planned and
laboriously polished work. "Spring Thoughts," by A. M. Adams, is a
humorous prose masterpiece by the National's new Critic. Seldom is the
amateur press favoured with such a well-sustained succession of
brilliant epigrams. Miss Owen's "Ode to Trempealeau Mountain" is a noble
specimen of heroic blank verse, containing some very striking
antithetical lines. The title, however, is a misnomer, since a true ode
is necessarily of irregular form. "Some Late Amateur Magazines," by
W. B. Stoddard, is a series of brief, informal reviews. As a critic, Mr.
Stoddard shows considerable discernment, though having a rather
unpleasant air of conscious superiority in certain places. A little more
stateliness of style would add to the force of his criticisms. "Spring"
reveals Rheinhart Kleiner in his favourite domain of amatory verse. Mr.
Kleiner's tuneful numbers and pure diction render his poetry ever a
delight. "Rebellion," by Miss von der Heide, is a metrically perfect
piece of verse whose artistry is marred only by the use of the
unpoetical philosophical term "subconscious" instead of "unconscious."

_The Brooklynite_ for July is of especial interest as the first paper to
print an account of the Rocky Mount convention. This description, from
the facile and versatile pen of Miss von der Heide, is of distinctly
informal character, yet is none the less interesting as an animated
chronicle of an enjoyable event. Rheinhart Kleiner's account of the
National convention is more dignified, and may be considered as a model
for this sort of composition. Mr. Kleiner shines as brightly in prose as
in verse, and each day surprises us with revelations of excellence in
various dissimilar departments of literature.

_The Conservative_ for July is notable for Mr. Ira Cole's delightfully
pantheistic poem, "A Dream of the Golden Age." The unusual poetic genius
of Mr. Cole has been revealed but recently, yet the imaginative
qualities pervading some of his prose long ago gave indications of this
gift. The pantheistic, Nature-worshipping mind of our author lends to
his productions an unique and elusive atmosphere which contrasts very
favourably with the earthy tone of some of our less fanciful bards.
Metrically, Mr. Cole adopts instinctively the regular, conservative
forms of a saner generation. In this specimen of heroic verse he
inclines toward the practice of Keats, and does not always confine
single thoughts to single couplets in the manner of the
eighteenth-century poets. We believe that Mr. Cole is commencing a
successful career as a United poet, and await the day when he shall be
accorded the honor of a laureateship.

_The Coyote_ for July reveals a wonderful improvement over the March
number, both in the literary quality of its contributions and in general
editorial excellence. Never before have we seen the perfect amateur
spirit acquired so quickly as in Mr. Harrington's case. "Night Fancies,"
by Helen H. Salls, is a sonnet of exceptional power and artistry, whose
faultless metre is equalled only by its bold and striking images. Amidst
this profusion of excellent metaphor, it is difficult to select
individual instances for particular praise, but we might commend
especially the passage:

    "... the stars still keep
    Afloat like boats that black sky-billows ride."

Miss Salls is clearly an amateur poet of the first rank, and it is to be
hoped that she will be a liberal contributor to United magazines. "The
Rebirth of the British Empire," by William T. Harrington, is a clear and
concise exposition of the virtues whereby Old England maintains her
proud position as Mistress of the Seas, and chief colonial empire of the
world. The style of the essay is admirable, and well exhibits the
progressive qualities of Mr. Harrington. "An Ideal," by Nettie Hartman,
is a short poem of pleasing sentiment and harmonious metre. The notes on
amateur affairs are interesting and well composed, revealing Mr.
Harrington's increasing enthusiasm for the cause.

_Dowdell's Bearcat_ for May is another striking illustration of the
improvement which can affect a paper within a very short time. Since
last October Mr. Dowdell has been progressing swiftly toward
journalistic excellence, and even this cleverly conceived and uniquely
shaped issue fails to mark the limit of his ambition. "Knowest Thou?" by
Mrs. Renshaw, is an expressive tribute to a nation whose recent infamies
can never wholly becloud its rugged virtues. "With Nature I Rejoice" is
probably the best poem which Joseph R. Schaffman has yet written. As his
remarkable talent matures, the didactic element in his verse is
gradually giving way to the more purely poetic, and this latest effort
is one of which he may be justly proud. Concerning Mr. Dowdell's own
spirited prose, we need only repeat the previous suggestion, that a
little less slang would add much to its force and dignity.

_Dowdell's Bearcat_ for May 26 contains another poem by Mrs. Renshaw
whose national tone is not likely to be popular just now outside the
country to which it refers; in fact, Editor Dowdell has deemed it wise
to make an apologetic statement concerning it. However, if we call "Ein
Mann" Col. Theodore Roosevelt, and shift the scene to San Juan Hill, we
may be able to appreciate the real patriotism delineated.

_Dowdell's Bearcat_ for June is wholly given over to notes of the
amateur world. Mr. Dowdell is indeed a pleasing young writer, and leaves
none of his topics without a characteristic touch of light adornment.

_The Lake Breeze_ for April is distinguished by James L. Crowley's poem
entitled "April," a brief lyric of marked merit, highly expressive of
the season. "Writing Poetry," an essay by Dora M. Hepner, is a clear and
tasteful analysis of the poet's art and inspiration. "The Norwegian
Recruit," a dialect monologue by Maurice W. Moe, is the leading feature
of this issue. This exquisite bit of humor, recited by Mr. Moe at the
United's 1913 convention, is a sketch of rare quality. "The Amateur
Press," now firmly established as a column of contributed reviews, is
this month of substantial size and fair quality. It is needless to say
that the news pages are interesting, and that the paper as a whole well
maintains the high reputation it has ever enjoyed.

_The Lake Breeze_ for June apparently opens an era of unprecedented
improvement, being of distinctly literary rather than political nature.
The plea for a Department of Instruction is a just one, and ought to
meet with response from some of our pedagogical members. "Broken Metre,"
by Mrs. Renshaw, is an attempt at defending the popular atrocities
committed in the name of freedom by the modern poets. While the article
is superficially quite plausible, we feel that the settled forms of
regular metre have too much natural justification thus to be disturbed.
The citation of Milton, intended to strengthen Mrs. Renshaw's argument,
really weakens it; for while he undoubtedly condemns _rhyme_, he laments
in the course of this very condemnation the _lame metre_ which is
sometimes concealed by apt rhyming. "Some Views on Versification," by
Clara I. Stalker, is an essay written from a sounder and more
conservative point of view. The middle course in poetical composition,
which avoids alike wild eccentricities and mechanical precision, has
much to recommend it, and Miss Stalker does well to point out its
virtues. However, we do not see why even the few irregularities which
are here said to be inevitable, cannot be smoothed out by the bard
without destroying the sense of his poetry. "Disappointment," by Mrs.
Maude K. Barton, is a clever piece of light verse whose sprightly humour
makes up for its slight metrical roughness. The imperfect but allowable
rhyming of "bear" and "appear" in the first stanza is entirely correct
according to the old-time standards which we ourselves follow, but we
fear that the delicate ear of a precise metrical artist like Rheinhart
Kleiner would object to its liberalism. "The Amateur Press" is
distinguished by an excellent review from the pen of Mrs. Renshaw. The
style is satisfactory, and the criticism just, making the whole well
worthy of the prize book it has secured for its author. "'Pollyanna,'
the Glad Book" is a meritorious and entertaining review by Mrs.
Griffith. "Hope," by Marguerite Sisson, is commendable for its use of
that noble but neglected measure, the heroic couplet. Mr. Daas'
concluding editorial, "Literature and Politics," is admirable for its
concise exposition of the United's new ideals, and its masterly
refutation of the common fallacy that political quarrels are necessary
to stimulate activity in the press associations.

_The Looking Glass_ for May is a journal unique in purpose and quality.
Edited by Mrs. Renshaw in behalf of her many gifted recruits, it reveals
a condition absolutely unexampled; the acquisition by one member of so
many high-grade novices that a special publication is required properly
to introduce them to the United. "To a Critic of Shelley," by Helen H.
Salls, is a long piece of beautiful blank verse, marred only by one
accidental rhyme. Miss Salls is evidently one of those few really
powerful poets who come all too seldom into Amateur Journalism,
startling the Association with impeccable harmony and exalted images.
The present poem grows even more attractive on analysis. The diction is
of phenomenal purity and wholly unspoiled by any ultra-modern touch. It
might have been a product of Shelley's own age. The metaphor is
marvellous, exhibiting a soul overflowing with true spirituality, and a
mind trained to express beautiful thought in language of corresponding
beauty. Such unforced ornateness is rarely met in the domain of amateur
poetry. We feel certain that Miss Salls has already become a fixed star
in the empyrean of the United. Exalted poetry of quite another type is
furnished by the work of our new Director, Rev. Frederick Chenault,
whose two exquisite lyrics, "Birth" and "The Sea of Somewhere," appear
in this issue. With little use of formal rhyme and metre, Mr. Chenault
abounds in delicate conceptions and artistic renditions.
"Retrospection," by Kathleen Baldwin, is likewise a poem of high order,
and of fairly regular metre, evidently following comparatively recent
models in technique. "The Faithful Man," by I. T. Valentine, shows
growing poetical talent, but is cruelly injured by the anticlimactic
line. Not that there is any anticlimax of sentiment, but the colloquial
mode of expression shocks the reader who has been perusing the more
dignified lines which go before. "The Stonework of Life" is an excellent
prose sermon by Joseph Ernest Shufelt, which displays great ability in
the field of metaphor and allegory. Mr. Shufelt possesses an admirable
style, unusually well fitted for didactic matter of this sort; indeed,
it is regrettable that he should ever depart from such congenial themes
and turn to the wild sensationalism which he shows in _The Badger_. In
demonstrating the beauties of morality and religion, he has few
superiors, and a task so appropriate to his genius ought to claim his
whole attention. True, his thoughts may follow strange courses in their
quest for truth and beauty, but were he always to curb them within the
bounds of probability and conservatism, as here, he would never lose the
confidence of his public, as he has done with his strange war theories.
"The Autocracy of Art," by Anne Vyne Tillery Renshaw, is the leading
article of the magazine. Herein the author proclaims the supremacy of
spiritual utterances over all restrictions created by the mind, and
urges the emancipation of the soaring bard from the earthly chains of
rhyme and metre. That the inward promptings of the poetic instinct are
of prime value to the poet, few will dispute; but that they may give
final form to his soul's creations without some regulation by the
natural laws of rhythm, few will agree. The metric sense lies far deeper
in the breast of man than Mrs. Renshaw is here disposed to acknowledge.
After this article, the perfectly regular stanzas of "Fellow Craftsman,"
_by the same author_, are refreshing. The typography and form of _The
Looking Glass_ leave something to be desired, but the riches within make
ample compensation for outward crudity.

_The New Member_ for May, edited by William Dowdell, contains but one
credential, yet doubtless paves the way for a resumption of the
enterprise so ably conducted by Miss Hoffman last year. "Melancholy," a
poem by I. T. Valentine, shows traces of the beginner's crudeness, yet
has about it a quality which promises much for the future of the poet.
"Lock-Step Pete," by Miss von der Heide, is an unusual poem with a
thoughtful suggestion embodied in its concluding stanza.

_The New Member_ bound with the May _Official Quarterly_ is a model that
should henceforth be followed as the nearest approach to perfection yet
beheld. Credentials, lists of prospective members, news of recruits, and
accounts of local clubs are here given in just and pleasing proportion.
"Bluets and Butterflies," by Carolyn L. Amoss, is a poem of great
delicacy and ethereal atmosphere. The solitary, tiny flaw is the
attempted rhyming of "Miss" and "yes." "War in America," by Annette E.
Foth, is a pleasant juvenile story. E. Ralph Cheyney's extract from his
essay on "Youth" is in many ways remarkable, and shows us that we have
another recruit of choice quality. His rather peculiar ideas are well
expressed, though their soundness is quite debatable. A few abnormal
characters like Byron and Shelley doubtless experienced all the
adolescent phenomena which Mr. Cheyney describes, but we believe that
the average youth is a copyist, and for the most part reflects his
environment. Radicalism and novel ideas arise just as much from blasÈ,
elderly cynics, who are tired of sane and sober conservatism. We have
been reflecting on Life for about twenty years, ever since we were five,
and have consistently believed that the wisdom of the ancient sage is
the true wisdom; that Life is essentially immutable, and that the
glorious dreams of youth are no more than dreams, to be dissipated by
the dawn of maturity and the full light of age. "Flowers on the Grave,"
a poem by J. D. Hill, has a commendable sentiment, and is remarkable for
its possession of only one repeated rhyming sound. Whether or not the
latter feature be monotonous, all must admit that the versification is
attractive. "We Are All Desperate!" is a striking philosophical fragment
by Melvin Ryder, which first appeared as an editorial in the _Ohio State
Lantern_. The conjectures are plausible, and the precepts sound. The
news items in this paper are all fresh and interesting, concluding an
issue uniformly excellent.

_The Pippin_ for May displays very favourably the high-school club whose
founding and maintenance are due entirely to the genius of Mr. Maurice
W. Moe. "The Coasters," by Esther Ronning, is the only poem in the
issue, but its quality atones for the absence of other verse. The
pleasures and perils of coasting are here portrayed with wonderfully
graphic pen, whilst the metre is, so far as technical correctness is
concerned, all that might be desired. However, we wish that Miss
Ronning were less fond of unusual rhyming arrangements. The lines here
given are of regular ballad length. Were they disposed in couplets, we
should have a tuneful lay of the "Chevy Chase" order; but as it is, our
ear misses the steady couplet effect to which the standard models have
accustomed us. "With the Assistance of Carmen" is a clever short story
by Gladys Bagg, derived from the same plot nucleus by Mr. Moe which
likewise evoked Miss Moore's story in the March UNITED AMATEUR. The
structure of the narrative is excellent, but we do not like the use of
the plebeian expression "onto" on page 3. There is properly no such word
as "onto" in the English language, "upon" being the preposition here
required. Webster clearly describes "onto" as a low provincialism or
colloquialism. "Little Jack in Fairyland," by Ruth Ryan, is a well
written account of a dream, with the usual awakening just as events are
coming to a climax. The style is very attractive, and the images
ingenious. "Getting What You Want," by Mr. Moe, is a brief one-act farce
illustrating the subtle devices whereby the sharp housewife bewilders
the good-natured landlord into the granting of extraordinary favours.
Had the heroine kept on to still greater lengths, she might have secured
an entire new house. The present number of _The Pippin_ is, save for the
absence of photographs, quite as pleasing as the previous number. We
trust that Mr. Moe's editorial prophecy may be fulfilled, and that we
may soon behold another issue which shall make us familiar with the new
faces brought by revolving time into the congenial Appleton circle.

_The Plainsman_ for July is the best number yet issued, the two
eleventh-hour contributions being very cleverly introduced. "Revised
Edition," by Mrs. Jeanette Timkin, is a versified piece of keen humour
and good metre, well illustrating the opening of the third or aerial
element to human travel. "To Bazine, Kansas" is a sprightly prose
account by James J. Hennessey of his journey from Boston to Bazine. "An
Incident of Early Days," by Mrs. John Cole, is presented in the same
attractive reminiscent style which makes her article in _The Trail_ so
readable and interesting. We are here told of the times when herds of
bison were common sights, and are given a pleasing account of the
formation of the Bazine Sunday-School. The articles by Mr. and Mrs. Ira
Cole show their appreciation of the amateurs who have visited them, and
conclude an issue of thoroughly entertaining quality.

_The Providence Amateur_ for June introduces to the United another local
press club of great enthusiasm. Owing to some unauthorized omissions
made by the printer, this first issue is scarcely representative of the
club's entire personnel, but that which still remains affords, after
all, a fair index to the character and ideals of the new organization.
The editorials by John T. Dunn are both frank and fearless. We detest a
shifty club whose allegiance wavers betwixt the United, the Morris
Faction and the National, and so are greatly pleased at Mr. Dunn's manly
and open stand for the one real United. The editor's opinions on
acknowledgment of papers is certainly just from one point of view,
though much may be said for the opposite side. When an amateur journal
has been prepared with unusual labour, and mailed conscientiously to
every member of the Association, the publisher has substantial reason
for resenting any marked display of neglect. We do not blame _The
Blarney Stone_ for its attitude on this question, and shall probably
follow its custom by mailing the next _Conservative_ only to those who
have acknowledged one or both of the previous issues.

_The Reflector_ for June is a British amateur magazine, transplanted on
American soil by its able editor, Ernest A. Dench. "Crossing the
Atlantic in War Time" is a pleasing account of Mr. Dench's voyage from
Liverpool to New York. "Chunks of Copy" forms the title of an excellent
though informal editorial department, while "A Brain Tank at Your
Service" teems with witticisms concerning various members of the Blue
Pencil Club. This magazine has no connection with any former journal of
like title, but seems likely to prove a worthy successor to all its

_The Trail_ for Spring is a new and substantial illustrated magazine of
20 pages and cover, issued by our well-known Private Critic, Mr. Alfred
L. Hutchinson. At the head of the contents are the reminiscences of the
editor, which prove extremely interesting reading, and which are well
supplemented by the lines entitled "The Tramp Printer." Also by Mr.
Hutchinson is the well written and animated account of Mr. Nicholas
Bruehl, whose artistic photographical work adorns the inside covers of
this issue. "Pioneer Life in Kansas," by Mrs. John Cole, is a
delightfully graphic picture of the trials and adventures of the early
settlers in the West. Being written from actual personal experience, the
various incidents leave a lasting impression on the mind of the reader,
while a pleasing smoothness of style enhances the vividness of the
narrative. "Memory-Building" is the first of a series of psychological
articles by our master amateur, Maurice W. Moe. It is here demonstrated
quite conclusively, that the faculty of memory is dependent on the
fundamental structure and quality of the brain, and may never be
acquired or greatly improved through cultivation. "Evening at Magnolia
Springs," by Laura E. Moe, exhibits the same type of literary talent
that her gifted husband possesses; in fact, this sketch may be compared
with Mr. Moe's well-known "Cedar Lake Days." The use of trivial
incidents gives an intense naturalness to the description. "Caught," by
Ruth M. Lathrop, is a brilliant short story whose development and climax
are natural and unforced. Fiction is generally the amateur's weakest
spot, but Miss Lathrop is evidently one of the few shining exceptions.
So thoroughly excellent is _The Trail_, that we hope to see not merely a
second issue, but its permanent establishment as one of the United's
leading magazines.

_The Tryout_ for June belongs to the National, but contains much matter
by United members. "Tempora Mutantur," a very meritorious short story by
Marguerite Sisson, affords an illuminating contrast between the solid
culture of 1834 and the detestable shallowness of the present time. This
prevailing frivolity and unscholarliness is something which the United
is seeking to remedy, and we are thankful indeed for stories such as
this, which expose modern levity in all its nauseousness. It is evident
that Miss Sisson is emulating the appreciative Anne Carroll of 1834,
rather than her obtuse and indifferent descendant. "The District
School," by Edna R. Guilford, describes very vividly the many petty
annoyances that beset the average teacher. While the picture is
extremely well presented as a whole, certain roughnesses of diction
nevertheless arrest the critical eye. "Onto," in the first paragraph, is
a provincialism which should be superseded by "to." Further on we hear
the teacher admonishing a youth to wash up some ink, and "wash it
_good_"! Would a _teacher_ thus express herself? "Well" is the adverb
here needed. "Too tired _to hardly stand_" is a seriously ungrammatical
phrase, which should read: "almost too tired to stand." We note that one
of the pupils' names is given as "Robert Elsmere." While it may not be
essentially a fault thus to use the name of a famous character of
fiction, we feel that the exercise of a little more originality might
have avoided this appropriation of Mrs. Humphry Ward's celebrated hero.
Miss Guilford's fundamental talent is unmistakable, but needs
cultivation and practice before it can shine out in full splendour.

_The Tryout_ for July contains "Cripple George," a beautiful short story
by Mrs. Rose L. Elmore, commendable alike in plot and technique. "A Day
in the Mountains," by Harry H. Connell, is a very interesting sketch
whose style exhibits considerable promise.

THE UNITED AMATEUR for March contains a literary department which will,
we hope, remain as a regular feature. "Tobias Smithers, Leading Man" is
Miss Ellen Moore's prize-winning attempt at constructing a story from a
very brief nucleus given by Mr. Moe. Miss Moore here exhibits a facile
pen and a just appreciation of humorous situations. "Ghosts," by Mrs.
Renshaw, well illustrates the vague superstitions of the negroes, those
strange creatures of darkness who seem never to cross completely the
threshold from apedom to humanity. "March," by ourselves, is a gem of
exquisite poesy, etc., etc., which we have here praised because no one
else could ever conscientiously do so. Line 10 apparently breaks the
metre, but this seeming break is due wholly to the printer. The line
should read:

    "The longer sunshine, and the shorter night."

"The Unknown Equation" is a love story by Mrs. Florence Shepphird.
Though the major portion is quite polished and consistent, we cannot but
deem the conclusion too abrupt and precipitate. Perhaps, being a frigid
old critic without experience in romance, we ought to submit the
question to some popular newspaper column of Advice to the Lovelorn,
inquiring whether or not it be permissible for a young lady, after only
a few hours' acquaintanceship with a young gentleman, to encourage him
to "put his arm around her yielding form and kiss her passionately"!!

THE UNITED AMATEUR for May is graced by "Reveille," a powerful and
stirring poem written in collaboration by our two gifted bards, Mr.
Kleiner, the Laureate, and Miss von der Heide. "Nature and the
Countryman," by A. W. Ashby, is an iconoclastic attack on that love of
natural beauty which is inherent in every poetical, imaginative and
delicately strung brain. In prose of faultless technique and polished
style, Mr. Ashby catalogues like a museum curator every species of flaw
that he can possibly pick in the scenes and events of rustic life. But
while the career of the farmer is assuredly not one of uninterrupted
bliss, it were folly to assert that Nature's superlative loveliness is
not more than enough to compensate for its various infelicities. No mind
of high grade is so impervious to aesthetic emotion that it can behold
without admiration the wonders of the rural realm, even though a vein of
sordid suffering ran through the beauteous ensemble. Of all our personal
friends, the one who most adores and loves to personify Nature is a
successful farmer of unceasing diligence. Mr. Ashby errs, we are
certain, in taking the point of view of the unimaginative and
unappreciative peasant. This sort of animal interprets Nature by
physical, not mental associations, and is unfitted by heredity to
receive impressions of the beautiful in its less material aspects.
Whilst he grumbles at the crimson flames of Aurora, thinking only of the
afternoon rain thus predicted, the man of finer mould, though equally
cognizant that a downpour may follow, rejoices impulsively at the pure
beauty of the scene itself, a scene whose intellectual exaltation will
help him the better to bear the dull afternoon. Is not the beauty-lover
the happier of the two? Both must endure the trials, but the poet enjoys
compensating pleasures which the boor may never know. The
personification and deification of Nature is a legacy from primitive
ages which will delight us in an atavistical way till our very race
shall have perished. And let Mr. Ashby remember that those early tribes
who placed a god or goddess in every leafy tree, crystal fount, reedy
lake or sparkling brook, were far closer to Nature and the soil than is
any modern tenant farmer.

_The United Official Quarterly_ for May has resumed its former
attractive appearance, and contains a very creditable assortment of
literary matter. "Atmosphere," by Mrs. Shepphird, is a thoughtful and
pleasing essay, whose second half well describes the individuality of
the various amateur authors and editors. "The Kingly Power of Laughter,"
by Louena Van Norman, is no less just and graphic, illustrating the
supreme force of humour and ridicule. Leo Fritter, in "Concerning
Candidates," points out some important details for office-seekers,
whilst Ira A. Cole, in "Five Sticks on Finance," gives some interesting
suggestions for economy. "Opportunity," an essay by Mildred Blanchard,
concludes the issue, and successfully disputes the noxious old
platitude, that "Opportunity knocks but once at each man's door." With
the _Quarterly_ is bound _The New Member_, reviewed elsewhere, the two
forming a tasteful and meritorious magazine.

_The Woodbee_ for July is an issue of unusual interest, revealing the
more serious and substantial activities of the prosperous Columbus Club.
The opening feature is a sonnet by Alma Sanger, "To Autumn Violets,"
which exhibits some poetical talent and a just sense of metrical values.
We are sure that the defective second line is the fault of the printer
rather than of the author. "The Blind Prince," by Henriette Ziegfeld, is
an excellent juvenile tale involving a fairy story. The only serious
objection is the undercurrent of adult comment which flows through the
narrative. Particularly cynical is the closing sentence: "'And here's
Mother,' finished poor Auntie with a sigh of relief." The ordinary fairy
stories told to children are bits of actual Teutonic mythology, and
should be related with a grave, absolute simplicity and naivete.
However, as a psychological study of the typical childish auditor, the
sketch as a whole is highly meritorious. We are inclined to wonder at
the possible meaning of the strange word "alright," which appears more
than once in Miss Ziegfeld's tale. It is certainly no part of our
language, and if it be a corruption of "all right," we must say that we
fail to perceive why the correct expression could not have been used.
"What's in a Name?" by Irene Metzger, is a clever sketch concerning
the silly modern practice of giving fancy names to helpless infants.
Glancing backward a little through history, Miss Metzger would probably
sympathize with the innocent offspring of the old Puritans, who
received such names as "Praise-God," and the like. Praise-God Barebones,
a leading and fanatical member of Cromwell's rebel parliament,
went a step further than his father, naming his own son
"If-Jesus-Christ-had-not-died-for-thee-thou-hadst-been-Damned"! All this
was actually the first name of young Barebones, but after he grew up and
took a Doctor's degree, he was called by his associates, "_Damned Dr.
Barebones_"! "Moonlight on the River," by Ida Cochran Haughton, is an
exquisite sentimental poem, each stanza of which ends with the same
expression. The atmosphere is well created, and the images dexterously
introduced. The whole piece reminds the reader of one of Thomas Moore's
beautiful old "Irish Melodies." That Mrs. Haughton's talent has
descended to the second generation is well proven by Edna M. Haughton's
"Review of the Literary Work of the Quarter." Miss Haughton is a
polished and scholarly reviewer, and her criticisms are in every
instance just and helpful. The editorial on "Miss United" is very well
written, and should be carefully perused by those in danger of
succumbing to the autumnal advances of that sour old maid, Miss

                                             --HOWARD P. LOVECRAFT

Little Journeys to the Homes of Prominent Amateurs

Among the many amateurs I have never met in the flesh and realness of
Life, Howard Phillips Lovecraft, poet, critic and student, appeals to me
as no other recent "find" in the circles of amateuria has ever appealed.
And Lovecraft _is_ a distinct "find." Just why he holds a firm grip on
my heart-strings is something of a mystery to me. Perhaps it is because
of his wholesome ideals; perhaps it is because he is a recluse, content
to nose among books of ancient lore; perhaps it's because of his
physical afflictions; his love of things beautiful in Life; his ardent
advocacy of temperance, cleanliness and purity--I don't know. We
disagree on many questions; he criticises my literary activities; he
smiles at my suffrage theories, and disapproves of my language in _Chain
Lightning_. But I like him.

Howard Phillips Lovecraft has an interesting history, and this fact was
known to Official Editor Daas when he asked me to take a little journey
to the study-home of the Vice-President. "Don't stint yourself for
space" was noted on the assignment tab, and after glancing over the
biographical notes before me--I am sure that Daas has again exemplified
his quiet humor during a serious moment.

Lovecraft was born at 454 Angell St., Providence, R. I., on August 20,
1890. His nationality is Anglo-American, and under British law he can
claim to be a British subject, since he is a grandson in direct male
line of a British subject not naturalized in the United States. His
ancestry is purely English. On the paternal side he is a descendant of
the Lovecrafts, a Devonshire family which has furnished a great many
clergymen to the Church of England, and the Allgoods of Northumberland,
a history-honored family of which several members have been knighted.
The Allgoods have been a military line, and this may account for
Lovecraft's militarism and belief in the justice of war. On the maternal
side he is a typical Yankee, coming from East English stock which
settled in Rhode Island about 1680. Lovecraft is a student of
astronomy--it is a domineering passion with him--and this love was
apparently inherited from his maternal grandmother, Rhoby Phillips, who
studied it thoroughly in her youth at Lapham Seminary, and whose
collection of old astronomical books first interested him. Lovecraft
came from pure-blood stock, and he is the last male descendant of that
family in the United States. With him the name will die in America. He
is unmarried.

As he was about to enter college at the age of eighteen, his feeble
health gave way, and since then he has been physically incapacitated and
rendered almost an invalid. Being thus deprived of his cherished hope to
further his education and prepare himself for a life of letters, he has
contented himself with his home, which is just three squares from his
birthplace, and where he lives with his mother. And his home life is
ideal. His personal library--his haven of contentment--contains more
than 1500 volumes, many of them yellowed with age, and crude examples of
the printer's art. Among these treasured books may be found volumes
which have passed through the various branches of his family, some
dating back to 1681 and 1702, and methinks I can see Lovecraft poring
over these time-stained bits o' bookish lore as the monks of old
followed the printed lines with quivering fingers in the taper's
uncertain, flickering light. For Lovecraft appeals to me as a
bookworm--one of those lovable mortals whose very existence seems to
hang on the numbered pages of a heavy, clumsy book!

His connection with organized amateur journalism is of recent date. On
April 6, 1914, his application for membership in the United Amateur
Press Association of America was forwarded to the Secretary. Like a
great many of the recruits, Lovecraft was completely ignored for several
months. In July of last year he became active, and he has proven to be
an invaluable asset to the literary life of the Association. He is _not_
a politician. However, his literary activities had been prosecuted many
years before he had ever heard of the United. At the age of eight and
one-half years he published the _Scientific Gazette_, a weekly
periodical, written in pencil and issued in editions of four carbon
copies. This journal was devoted to the science of chemistry, which was
one of his earliest hobbies, and ran from March, 1899, to February,
1904. As in most cases, my knowledge of chemistry was acquired after I
had spent four years in high-school, and the fact that any boy should be
interested in that study at the age of eight and one-half years appeals
to me as something out of the ordinary. But Lovecraft was not an
ordinary boy. His second and more ambitious venture was the _Rhode
Island Journal of Astronomy_. This was at first published as a weekly,
and later changed to a monthly publication. This was carefully printed
by hand and then duplicated on the hectograph and issued in lots of
twenty-five copies. The _Journal_ was issued from 1903 to 1907, and
contained the latest astronomical news, re-written from the original
telegraphic reports issued from Harvard University and seen at the Ladd
Observatory. It also contained many of his original articles and
forecasts of phenomena. He owns a 3-inch telescope of French make, and
aside from amateur journalism, his one great hobby is astronomy. At the
age of sixteen he commenced writing monthly astronomical articles for
the Providence _Tribune_, and later changed to the _Evening News_, to
which he still contributes. During the present year he has contributed a
complete elementary treatise on astronomy in serial form to the
Asheville (N. C.) _Gazette-News_. Besides contributing a great many
poems and articles to the amateur press, editing _The Conservative_ and
assisting with the editorial work on _The Badger_, the appearance of Mr.
Lovecraft's work in the professional magazines is of common occurrence.
During the past year he has had charge of the Bureau of Public Criticism
in THE UNITED AMATEUR, where he has proven himself a just, impartial and
painstaking critic. That he will achieve a great popularity in the world
of amateur letters is a foregone conclusion, and I do not think that I
am indulging in extravagant praise in predicting a brilliant future for
him in the professional field.

I am acquainted with Howard Phillips Lovecraft only through
correspondence; I have never felt the flesh of his palm, and yet, I know
he is a man--every inch of him--and that amateur journalism will be
enriched and promoted to its highest plane through his kindly influence
and literary leadership.

                                               ANDREW FRANCIS LOCKHART


The Teuton's Battle-Song

    "Omnis erat vulnus unda
    Terra rubefacta calido
    Frendebat gladius in loricas
    Gladius findebat clypeos--
    Non retrocedat vir a viro
    Hoc fuit viri fortis nobilitas diu--
    Laetus cerevisiam cum Asis
    In summa sede bibam
    Vitae elapsae sunt horae
    Ridens moriar."
                    --REGNER LODBROG

    The mighty Woden laughs upon his throne,
    And once more claims his children for his own.
    The voice of Thor resounds again on high,
    While arm'd Valkyries ride from out the sky:
    The Gods of Asgard all their pow'rs release
    To rouse the dullard from his dream of peace.
    Awake! ye hypocrites, and deign to scan
    The actions of your "brotherhood of Man."
    Could your shrill pipings in the race impair
    The warlike impulse put by Nature there?
    Where now the gentle maxims of the school,
    The cant of preachers, and the Golden Rule?
    What feeble word or doctrine now can stay
    The tribe whose fathers own'd Valhalla's sway?
    Too long restrain'd, the bloody tempest breaks,
    And Midgard 'neath the tread of warriors shakes.
    On to thy death, Berserker bold! And try
    In acts of Godlike bravery to die!
    Who cares to find the heaven of the priest,
    When only warriors can with Woden feast?
    The flesh of Sehrimnir, and the cup of mead,
    Are but for him who falls in martial deed:
    Yon luckless boor, that passive meets his end,
    May never in Valhalla's court contend.
    Slay, brothers, Slay! And bathe in crimson gore;
    Let Thor, triumphant, view the sport once more!
    All other thoughts are fading in the mist,
    But to attack, or if attack'd, resist.
    List, great Alfadur, to the clash of steel;
    How like a man does each brave swordsman feel!
    The cries of pain, the roars of rampant rage,
    In one vast symphony our ears engage.
    Strike! Strike him down! Whoever bars the way;
    Let each kill many ere he die today!
    Ride o'er the weak; accomplish what ye can;
    The Gods are kindest to the strongest man!
    Why should we fear? What greater joy than this?
    Asgard alone could give us sweeter bliss!
    My strength is waning; dimly can I see
    The helmeted Valkyries close to me.
    Ten more I slay! How strange the thought of fear,
    With Woden's mounted messengers so near!
    The darkness comes; I feel my spirit rise;
    A kind Valkyrie bears me to the skies.
    With conscience clear, I quit the earth below,
    The boundless joys of Woden's halls to know.
    The grove of Glasir soon shall I behold,
    And on Valhalla's tablets be enroll'd:
    There to remain, till Heimdall's horn shall sound,
    And Ragnarok enclose creation round;
    And Bifrost break beneath bold Surtur's horde,
    And Gods and men fall dead beneath the sword;
    When sun shall die, and sea devour the land,
    And stars descend, and naught but Chaos stand.
    Then shall Alfadur make his realm anew,
    And Gods and men with purer life indue.
    In that blest country shall Abundance reign,
    Nor shall one vice or woe of earth remain.
    Then, not before, shall men their battles cease,
    And live at last in universal peace.
    Through cloudless heavens shall the eagle soar,
    And happiness prevail forevermore.

                                 --H. P. LOVECRAFT

_Author's Note._

The writer here endeavours to trace the ruthless ferocity and incredible
bravery of the modern Teutonic soldier to the hereditary influence of
the ancient Northern Gods and Heroes. Despite the cant of the
peace-advocate, we must realise that our present Christian civilisation,
the product of an alien people, rests but lightly upon the Teuton when
he is deeply aroused, and that in the heat of combat he is quite prone
to revert to the mental type of his own Woden-worshipping progenitors,
losing himself in that superb fighting zeal which baffled the conquering
cohorts of a Caesar, and humbled the proud aspirations of a Varus.
Though appearing most openly in the Prussian, whose recent acts of
violence are so generally condemned, this native martial ardour is by no
means peculiar to him, but is instead the common heritage of every
branch of our indomitable Xanthochroic race, British and Continental
alike, whose remote forefathers were for countless generations reared in
the stern precepts of the virile religion of the North. Whilst we may
with justice deplore the excessive militarism of the Kaiser Wilhelm and
his followers, we cannot rightly agree with those effeminate preachers
of universal brotherhood who deny the virtue of that manly strength
which maintains our great North European family in its position of
undisputed superiority over the rest of mankind, and which in its purest
form is today the bulwark of Old England. It is needless to say to an
educated audience that the term "Teuton" is in no way connected with the
modern German Empire, but embraces the whole Northern stock, including
English and Belgians.

In the Northern religion, Alfadur, or the All-Father, was a vague though
supreme deity. Beneath him were among others Woden, or Odin, practically
the supreme deity, and Woden's eldest son Thor, the God of War. Asgard,
or heaven, was the dwelling-place of the Gods, whilst Midgard was the
earth, or abode of man. The rainbow, or bridge of Bifrost, which
connected the two regions, was guarded by the faithful watchman
Heimdall. Woden lived in the palace of Valhalla, near the grove of
Glasir, and had as messengers to earth the Valkyries, armed, mailed and
mounted virgins who conveyed from the earth to Asgard such men as had
fallen bravely in battle. Only those who fell thus could taste to the
full the joys of paradise. These joys consisted of alternate feasting
and fighting. At Woden's feasts in Valhalla was served the flesh of the
boar Sehrimnir, which, though cooked and eaten at every meal, would
regain its original condition the next day. The wounds of the warriors
in each celestial combat were miraculously healed at the end of the

But this heaven was not to last forever. Some day would come Ragnarok,
or the Twilight of the Gods, when all creation would be destroyed, and
all the Gods and men save Alfadur perish. Surtur, after killing the last
of these Gods, would burn up the world. Afterward the supreme Alfadur
would make a new earth or paradise, creating again the Gods and men, and
suffering them ever after to dwell in peace and plenty.

                   THE UNITED AMATEUR




=The Brooklynite= for January contains one of Rheinhart Kleiner's
characteristic poems, entitled "A Mother's Song". Mr. Kleiner's command
of good taste, harmony, and correctness requires no further panegyric
amongst those who know him; but to the more recent United members who
have not yet read extensively in our journals, his work may well be
recommended as undoubtedly the safest of all amateur poetical models for
emulation. Mr. Kleiner has a sense of musical rhythm which few amateur
bards have ever possessed, and his choice of words and phrases is the
result of a taste both innate and cultivated, whose quality appears to
rare advantage in the present degenerate age. This remarkable young poet
has not yet fully displayed in verse the variety of thoughts and images
of which his fertile brain and well selected reading have made him
master, but has preferred to concentrate most of his powers upon
delicate amatory lyrics. While some of his readers may at times regret
this limitation of endeavor, and wish he might practice to a greater
extent that immense versatility which he permitted the amateur public to
glimpse in the September =Piper=; it is perhaps not amiss that he should
cultivate most diligently that type of composition most natural and easy
to him, for he is obviously a successor of those polished and elegant
poets of gallantry whose splendour adorned the reigns of Queen Elizabeth
and King James the First.

       *       *       *       *       *

=The Conservative= for January opens with Winifred Virginia Jordan's
"Song of the North Wind", one of the most powerful poems lately seen in
the amateur press. Mrs. Jordan is the newest addition to the United's
constellation of genuine poetical luminaries; shining as an artist of
lively imagination, faultless taste, and graphic expression, whose work
possesses touches of genius and individualism that have already brought
her renown in amateur circles. In the poem under consideration, Mrs.
Jordan displays a phenomenal comprehension of the sterner aspects of
Nature, producing a thoroughly virile effect. Words are chosen with care
and placed with remarkable force, whilst both alliteration and
onomatopoeia are employed with striking success. By the same author is
the shorter poem entitled "Galileo and Swammerdam", which though vastly
different in aspect and rhythm, yet retains that suggestion of mysticism
so frequently encountered in Mrs. Jordan's work.

James Tobey Pyke, a lyrical and philosophical poet of high scholastic
attainments, contributes two poems; "Maia", and "The Poet". The latter
is a stately sonnet, rich in material for reflection. Such is the
quality of Mr. Pyke's work, that his occasional contributions are ever
to be acclaimed with the keenest interest and appreciation.

Rheinhart Kleiner, our Laureate, is another bard twice represented in
the January =Conservative=. His two poems, "Consolation" and "To Celia",
though widely different in structure, are yet not unrelated in
sentiment, being both devoted to the changing heart. One amateur critic
has seen fit to frown upon so skilled an apotheosis of inconsistency,
but it seems almost captious thus to analyse an innocuous bit of art so
daintily and tastefully arrayed. "To Celia" is perhaps slightly the
better of the two, having a very commendable stateliness of cadence, and
a gravity of thought greater than that of "Consolation".

"The Horizon of Dreams", by Mrs. Renshaw, is a graphic and enthralling
venture into the realm of nocturnal unreality. The free play of active
imagination, the distorted and transitory conceptions and apparitions,
and the strangely elusive analogies, all lend charm and color to this
happy portrayal of the vague boundaries of Somnus' domain. Mrs.
Renshaw's rank as a poet is of very high tone, most of her productions
involving a spiritual insight and metaphysical comprehension vastly
beyond that of the common mind. But this very nobility of imagination,
and superiority to the popular appeal, are only too likely to render her
best work continually underestimated and unappreciated by the majority.
She is not a "poet of the masses", and her graver efforts must needs
reach audiences more notable for cultured than numerical magnitude. Of
Mrs. Renshaw's liberal metrical theories, enough is said elsewhere. This
Department can neither endorse principles so radical, nor refrain from
remarking that want of proper rhyme and metre has relegated to obscurity
many a rich and inspired poem.

"Departed", by Maude Kingsbury Barton, is a sentimental poem of
undoubted grace and sweetness, happily cast in unbroken metre.

       *       *       *       *       *

=The Coyote= for January is adorned by no less than three of Mrs.
Winifred V. Jordan's exquisite short poems. "The Night-Wind" is a
delicately beautiful fragment of dreamy metaphor. There is probably a
slight misprint in the last line, since the construction there becomes
somewhat obscure. "My Love's Eyes" has merit, but lacks polish. The word
"azure" in the first stanza, need not be in the possessive case; whilst
the use of a singular verb with a plural noun in the second stanza
(smiles-beguiles) is a little less than grammatical. "Longing" exhibits
the author at her best, the images and phraseology alike showing the
touch of genius.

Other poetry in this issue is by Adam Dickson, a bard of pleasing manner
but doubtful correctness. "Smile" needs rigorous metrical and rhetorical
revision to escape puerility. "Silver Bells of Memory" is better, though
marred by the ungrammatical passage "thoughts doth linger". In this
passage, either the noun must be made singular, or the verb form plural.

"Prohibition in Kansas" is a well written prose article by Editor
William T. Harrington, wherein he exhibits a commendably favourable
attitude toward the eradication of the menace of strong drink. Mr.
Harrington is an able and active amateur, and takes an intelligent
interest in many public questions. His style and taste are steadily
improving, so that =The Coyote= has already become a paper of importance
among us.

       *       *       *       *       *

=The Dixie Booster= for January is Mr. Raymond E. Nixon's =Capital City
News=, transferred to the amateur world, and continued under the new
name. With this number the editor's brother, Mr. Roy W. Nixon, assumes
the position of Associate Editor. This neat little magazine is
home-printed throughout, and may well remind the old-time amateurs of
those boyish "palmy days" whose passing they lament so frequently. By
means of a cut on the third page, we are properly introduced to Editor
Nixon, who at present boasts but thirteen years of existence. The gifted
and versatile associate editor, Mr. Roy W. Nixon, shows marked talent in
three distinct departments of literature; essay-writing, fiction, and
verse. "Writing as a Means of Self-Improvement" is a pure, dignified and
graceful bit of prose whose thought is as commendable as its structure.
"A Bottle of Carbolic Acid" is a gruesome but clever short story of the
Poe type, exhibiting considerable comprehension of abnormal psychology
as treated in literature. "My Valentine" is a poem of tuneful metre and
well expressed sentiment, though not completely polished throughout. The
third stanza, especially, might be made less like prose in its images.

       *       *       *       *       *

=Dowdell's Bearcat= for December is quaint and attractive in appearance.
The youthful editor has provided himself with a series of cuts of the
metaphorical "Bruin" in various attitudes and various employments, these
clever little pictures lending a pleasing novelty to the cover and the
margins. Judiciously distributed red ink, also, aids in producing a
Christmas number of truly festive quality. Mr. Dowdell's "Growls from
the Pit" is a series of editorials both timely and interesting, while
his "Did You Hear That" is a lively page of fresh news. This issue is
notable for Mrs. Winifred V. Jordan's poetical contributions, of which
there are three. "Life's Sunshine and Shadows" is a tuneful moral poem
whose rhythm and imagery are equally excellent. "Contentment" is brief
but delightful. "When the Woods Call" is a virile, graphic piece;
vibrant with the thrill of the chase, and crisp with the frosty air of
the Northern Woods.

The present reviewer's lines "To Samuel Loveman" contain five misprints,
as follows:

 Line  3 for =are=     read =art=
   "   5  "  =Appollo=   "  =Apollo=
   "   6  "  =versus=    "  =verses=
   "  15  "  =eternal=   "  =ethereal=
   "  18  "  =the=       "  =thee=

"Beads from my Rosary", by Mary M. Sisson, is a collection of well
written and sensible paragraphs on amateur journalism, which ought to
assist in arousing enthusiasm amongst many members hitherto dormant.
Editor Dowdell's pithy little epigrams at the foot of each page form an
entertaining feature, many of them being of considerable cleverness.
=Dowdell's Bearcat= will soon revert to its original newspaper form,
since Mr. Dowdell intends to make newspaper work his life Profession.

       *       *       *       *       *

=The Inspiration= for November is a decidedly informal though
exceedingly clever personal paper issued by Miss Edna von der Heide as a
reminiscence of the Rocky Mount convention. Prose and verse of
whimsically humorous levity are employed with success in recording the
social side of the amateur gathering.

       *       *       *       *       *

=The Looking Glass= for January is composed wholly of biographical
matter, introducing to the association the multitude of accomplished
recruits obtained through Mrs. Renshaw and others. In these forty life
stories, most of them autobiographical, the student of human nature may
find material for profound reflection on the variety of mankind. The
more recent members of the United, as here introduced, are in the
aggregate a maturer, more serious, and more scholarly element than that
which once dominated the amateur world; and if they can be properly
welcomed and acclimated to the realm of amateur letters, they will be of
great value indeed in building up the ideals and character of the
association. For this influx of sedate, cultivated members, the United
has Mrs. Renshaw to thank, since the present policy of recruiting was
originated and is conducted largely by the Second Vice-President.

       *       *       *       *       *

=Ole Miss'= for December is the most important of all recent additions
to amateur letters, and it is with regret that we learn of the
magazine's prospective discontinuance. The issue under consideration is
largely local, most of the contributions being by Mississippi talent,
and it must be said that the contributors all reflect credit upon their
native or adopted State.

Mr. J. W. Renshaw's page of editorials is distinguished equally by good
sense and good English. His attitude of disapproval toward petty
political activities and fruitless feuds in the United is one which
every loyal member will endorse, for nearly all of the past disasters in
amateur history have been caused not by serious literary differences,
but by conflicting ambitions among those seeking no more than cheap

Mrs. Renshaw is well represented both by prose and by verse, the most
interesting of her pieces being possibly the essay entitled "Poetic
Spontaneity", wherein more arguments are advanced in her effort to prove
the inferior importance of form and metre in poesy. According to Mrs.
Renshaw, the essence of all genuine poetry is a certain spontaneous and
involuntary spiritual or psychological perception and expression;
incapable of rendition in any prescribed structure, and utterly
destroyed by subsequent correction or alteration of any kind. That is,
the bard must respond unconsciously to the noble impulse furnished by a
fluttering bird, a dew-crowned flower, or a sun-blest forest glade;
recording his thoughts exactly as evolved, and never revising the
result, even though it be detestably cacophonous, or absolutely
unintelligible to his less inspired circle of readers. To such a theory
as this we must needs reply, that while compositions of the sort
indicated may indeed represent poesy, they certainly represent art in
its proper sense no more than do "futuristic" pictures and other modern
monstrosities of a like nature. The only exact means whereby a poet may
transmit his ideas to others is language, a thing both definite and
intellectual. Granting that vague, chaotic, dissonant lines are the best
form in which the tender suitor of the Muses may record his spiritual
impressions for his own benefit and comprehension, it by no means
follows that such lines are at all fitted to convey those impressions to
minds other than his own. When language is used without appropriateness,
harmony, or precision, it can mean but little save to the person who
writes it. The soul of a poem lies not in words but in meaning; and if
the author have any skill at all in recording thought through language,
he will be able to refine the uncouth mass of spontaneous verbiage
which first comes to him as representing his idea, but which in its
original amorphous state may fail entirely to suggest the same idea to
another brain. He will be able to preserve and perpetuate his idea in a
style of language which the world may understand, and in a rhythm which
may not offend the reader's sense of propriety with conspicuous
harshness, breaks, or sudden transitions.

"Flames of the Shadow", Mrs. Renshaw's longest poetical contribution to
this issue, is a powerful piece which, despite the author's theory,
seems in no way injured by its commendably regular structure.
"Immortality of Love" is likewise rather regular, though the plan of
rhyming breaks down in the last stanza. "For You" and "Sacrament of
Spirit" are short pieces, the former containing an "allowable" rhyming
of "tongue" and "long", which would not meet with the approval of the
Kleiner type of critic, but upon which this department forbears to

James T. Pyke's two poems, "To a Butterfly" and "Life and Time" are gems
of incomparable beauty. "Ole Gardens", by Winifred V. Jordan, is a
haunting bit of semi-irregular verse which deserves warm applause for
the cleverness of its imagery and the aptness of its phraseology. "The
Reward of it All", by Emilie C. Holladay, is a potent but pathetic poem
of sentiment, whose development is highly commendable, but whose
metrical construction might be improved by judicious care. "A
Mississippi Autumn" was written as prose by Mrs. Renshaw, and set in
heroic verse without change of ideas by the present critic. The metaphor
is uniformly lofty and delicate, whilst the development of the sentiment
is facile and pleasing. It is to be hoped that the original thoughts of
the author are not impaired or obscured by the technical turns of the
less inspired versifier. "My Dear, Sweet, Southern Blossom", dedicated
to Mr. and Mrs. Renshaw with Compliments of the Author, James Laurence
Crowley, is a saccharine and sentimental piece of verse reminiscent of
the popular ballads which flourished ten or more years ago. Triteness is
the cardinal defect, for each genuine image is what our discerning
private critic Mr. Moe would call a "rubber-stamp" phrase. Mr. Crowley
requires a rigorous course of reading among the classic poets of our
language, and a careful study of their art as a guide to the development
of his taste. At present his work has about it a softness bordering on
effeminacy, which leads us to believe that his conception of the poet's
art is rather imperfect. It is only in caricature that we discover the
poet as a sighing, long-haired scribbler of gushing flights of infantile
awe or immature adoration. Earnestness, dignity, and at times, sonorous
stateliness, become a good poet; and such thoughts as are generally
suggested by the confirmed use of "Oh", "Ah", "dear", "little",
"pretty", "darling", "sweetest flow'ret of all", "where the
morning-glory twineth", and so on, belong less to literary poetry than
to the Irving Berlin song-writing industry of "Tin Pan Alley" in the
Yiddish wilds of New York City. Mr. Crowley has energy of no mean sort,
and if he will apply himself assiduously to the cultivation of masculine
taste and technic, he can achieve a place of prominence among United

W. S. Harrison deserves a word of praise for his poem of Nature,
entitled "Our Milder Clime", wherein he celebrates the charms of
Mississippi, his native state. The lines contain an old-fashioned grace
too often wanting in contemporary verse. Other contributions to =Ole
Miss'= are Mrs. Maude K. Barton's "Something of Natchez", a very
interesting descriptive sketch in prose, and Dr. Rolfe Hunt's two negro
dialect pieces, both of which are of inimitable wit and cleverness.

       *       *       *       *       *

=The Pippin= for February is the first number of this important
high-school journal to be issued without the supervision of Mr. Moe, and
its excellence well attests the substantial independent merit of the
Appleton Club. The city of Appleton forms the dominant theme in this
number, and with the assistance of seven attractive half-tone
illustrations, the publication well displays the beauty and advantages
of the pleasant Wisconsin town. Miss Eleanor Halls cleverly weaves into
conversational form much information concerning the remote history of
Appleton, emphasizing the superior character resulting from the select
quality of the settlers, and the early introduction of learning. Mr.
Alfred Galpin surprises many readers when he reveals the fact that
Appleton possessed the first of all telephone systems, a surprise
quickly followed by Mr. Joseph Harriman's illustrated paragraph telling
of the first street-car, also an Appleton innovation. Among other
articles, that by Miss Torrey on Lawrence College is of unusual
interest. "The Immortalization of the Princess", by Miss Fern Sherman,
is an excellent Indian tale, whose structure and atmosphere well suggest
not only the characteristic tribal legends of the red folk, but other
and more classical myths as well. Though Miss Sherman is not yet a
member of the United, one of such gifts would be heartily welcomed in
the ranks.

       *       *       *       *       *

=The Plainsman= for December is the most substantial number of his
journal which Mr. Ira Cole has yet issued. First in order of importance
among the contents is perhaps the editor's own prose sketch entitled
"Monuments", wherein Mr. Cole reveals to particular advantage his
exceptional skill in depicting and philosophizing upon the various
aspects and phenomena of Nature. Mr. Cole's style is constantly
improving, though not now of perfect polish, it is none the less
remarkable for its grace and fluency. "To Florence Shepphird", also by
Mr. Cole, is a rather long piece of blank verse, containing many
beautiful passages. The author's skill in stately and sonorous poetry is
far above the common level, and his work has about it an atmosphere of
the polished past which that of most amateur bards lacks; yet the
present poem is not without errors. The passage (lines 10-11) reading:
"calm =days= that =knoweth= not dread Boreas' chilling breath" must be
changed so that either the noun shall be singular or the verb plural.
The double negative in line 23 might well be eliminated. Two lines whose
metre could be improved are the 13th and 50th. The final quatrain is
pleasing to the average ear, including that of the present critic;
though the very exact taste of today, as represented by Mr. Kleiner,
frowns upon such deviation from the dominant blank verse arrangement.
"On the Cowboys of the West" is a brief bit of verse by this reviewer,
accompanied by a note from the pen of Mr. Cole. The note is better than
the verse, and exhibits Mr. Cole's vivid and imaginative prose at its
best. "The Sunflower", a versified composition by James Laurence
Crowley, concludes the issue. There is much attractiveness in the lines;
though we may discover particularly in the second stanza, that touch of
excessive softness which occasionally mars Mr. Crowley's work. No one
can fail to discern the weakness of such a line as "You big giant of all
the flowers".

       *       *       *       *       *

=The Providence Amateur= for February is worthy of particular attention
on account of Mr. Peter J. MacManus' absorbing article on "The Irish and
the Fairies". Mr. MacManus firmly believes not only that fairies exist
in his native Ireland, but that he has actually beheld a troop of them;
facts which impart to this article a psychological as well as a literary
interest. The prose style of Mr. MacManus is very good, being notable
alike for fluency and freedom from slang, whilst his taste is of the
best. His future work will be eagerly awaited by the amateur public.
Edmund L. Shehan contributed both verse and prose to this issue. "Death"
is a stately poem on a grave subject, whose sentiments are all of
suitable humility and dignity. The apparently anomalous pronoun "her",
in the tenth line, is a misprint for "he". The piece ends with a rhyming
couplet, to which Mr. Kleiner, representing correct modern taste, takes
marked exception. The present reviewer, however, finds no reason to
object to any part of Mr. Shehan's poem, and attributes this concluding
couplet to the influence of similar Shakespearian terminations. The
prose piece by Mr. Shehan well describes a visit to a cinematograph
studio, and is entitled "The Making of a Motion Picture". In the verses
entitled "A Post-Christmas Lament", Mr. John T. Dunn combines much
keenness of wit with commendable regularity of metre. Mr. Dunn is among
the cleverest of the United's humorous writers. "To Charlie of the
Comics" is a harmless parody on our Laureate's excellent poem "To Mary
of the Movies", which appeared some time ago in =The Piper=. In "The
Bride of the Sea", Mr. Lewis Theobald, Jr., presents a rather weird
piece of romantic sentimentality of the sort afforded by bards of the
early nineteenth century. The metre is regular, and no flagrant
violations of grammatical or rhetorical precepts are to be discerned,
yet the whole effort lacks clearness, dignity, inspiration, and poetic
spontaneity. The word printed "enhanc'd" in the sixth stanza is properly

       *       *       *       *       *

=Tom Fool, Le Roi= bears no definite date, but is a sort of pensive
autumn reverie following the Rocky Mount convention of last summer. This
grave and dignified journal is credited to the House of Tillery, and if
typographical evidence may be accepted, it belongs most particularly to
that branch now bearing the name of Renshaw and having its domain in
Coffeeville, Mississippi. "Mother Gooseries from the Convention", by
Emilie C. Holladay, is a long stanzaic and Pindaric ode, whose taste and
technic are alike impeccable. The exalted images are sketched with
artistic touch, whilst the deep underlying philosophy, skillfully
clothed in well balanced lines, arouses a sympathetic reaction from
every cultural intellect. "The Carnival", by Mrs. E. L. Whitehead, is an
admirable example of stately descriptive prose mixed with aesthetic
verse. The long and euphonious periodic sentences suggest the style of
Gibbon or of Dr. Johnson, whilst the occasional metrical lines remind
the reviewer of Dr. Young's solemn "Night Thoughts". "Dummheit", by Dora
M. Hepner, is a grave discourse on Original Sin, describing the planning
of =Tom Fool, Le Roi=. Elizabeth M. Ballou's article entitled "Our
Absent Friend" forms a notable contribution to amateur historical
annals, and displays Miss Ballou as the possessor of a keen faculty for
observation, and a phenomenally analytical intellect. "Banqueters from
the Styx", Mrs. Renshaw's masterly description of the convention dinner
and its honoured guests from the regions of Elysium and elsewhere,
reminds the reviewer of the 11th book of the Odyssey and the 6th book of
the Aeneid, wherein the fraternizing of men with the shades of men is
classically delineated.

=Tom Fool= is a memorable publication, suggesting the old "fraternal"
papers, whose passing so many amateurs regret.

       *       *       *       *       *

THE UNITED AMATEUR for November contains besides the official matter a
small but select assortment of poems, prominent among which is "The
Meadow Cricket", by Jas. T. Pyke. It is impossible to overestimate the
beauty of thought and expression which Mr. Pyke shows in all his verses,
and the United is fortunate in being able to secure specimens of his

"Remorse", by James Laurence Crowley, is one of the best samples of this
gentleman's poesy which we have yet seen, though Mr. Crowley insists
that one of the punctuation marks has been wrongfully located by the
reviser. Since the present critic prepared the manuscript for
publication, he is willing to assume full culpability for this crime.
There is genuine poetic feeling in this short piece; and it seems an
undoubted fact that Mr. Crowley with a little added restraint and
dignity of expression, is capable of producing excellent work. "List to
the Sea", by Winifred V. Jordan, is a delightfully musical lyric, whose
dancing dactyls and facile triple rhymes captivate alike the fancy and
the ear. "The Wind and the Beggar", by Maude K. Barton, is sombre and
powerful. "Ambition", by William de Ryee, is regular in metre and
commendable in sentiment, yet not exactly novel or striking in
inspiration. "Choose ye", by Ella C. Eckert, is a moral poem of clever
conception and correct construction.

       *       *       *       *       *

=The United Official Quarterly= for January opens with "A Prayer for the
New Year", by Frederick R. Chenault. Mr. Chenault is a poet of the first
order so far as inspiration is concerned, but his work is frequently
marred by irregularity of metre, and the use of assonance in place of
rhyme. The metre of this poem is correct, but the two attempted rhymes
"deeper-meeker" and "supremely-sincerely" are technically no more than
assonant sounds. Pres. Fritter writes very powerfully on our publishing
situation in this number; and his article should not only be perused
with attention, but heeded with sincerity and industriousness.

"Behind the Canvas Wall", by William J. Dowdell, is one of the cleverest
and most ingenious bits of fiction which the amateur press has contained
for some time. That it is of a nature not exactly novel is but a trivial
objection. The homely, appealing plot, and the simple, sympathetic
treatment, both point to Mr. Dowdell as a possible success in the realm
of short story writing, should he ever care to enter it seriously.
Another excellent tale is "The Good Will of a Dog", by P. J. Campbell.
The plot is of a well defined type which always pleases, whilst the
incidents are graphically delineated. "The Bookstall" is a metrical
monstrosity by the present reviewer. Mr. Maurice W. Moe, the
distinguished Private Critic, lately gave us the following opinion of
our verse. "You are," he writes, "steeped in the poetry of a certain
age; an age, by the way, which cut and fit its thought with greater
attention to one model than any other age before or since; and the
result is that when you turn to verse as a medium of expression, it is
just as if you were pressing a button liberating a perfect flood of
these perfectly good but stereotyped formulae of expression. The result
is very ingenious, but just because it is such a skillful mosaic of
Georgian 'rubber-stamp' phrases, it must ever fall short of true art."
Mr. Moe is correct. We have, in fact, heard this very criticism
reiterated by various authorities ever since those prehistoric days when
we began to lisp in numbers. Yet somehow we perversely continue to
"mosaic" along in the same old way! But then, we have never claimed to
possess "true art"; we are merely a metrical mechanic. "A New Point of
View In Home Economics", a clever article by Miss Eleanor Barnhart,
concludes the =Official Quarterly= proper.

But the =New Member= supplement, with its profusion of brilliant
credentials, yet remains to be considered. "Dutch Courage", by Louis E.
Boutwell, is a liquorish sketch whose scene is laid in a New Jersey
temple of Bacchus. Being totally unacquainted with the true saloon
atmosphere, we find ourself a little embarrassed as to critical
procedure, yet we may justly say that the characters are all well drawn,
every man in his humor.

"Ol' Man Murdock" is a quaint, and in two senses an =absorbing=, figure.
The rest of the issue is given over to the Muses of poesy. "The Saturday
Fray" is a clever piece by Daisy Vandenbank. The rhyming is a little
uneven, and in one case assonance is made to answer for true rhyme.
"Cream" and "mean" cannot make an artistic couplet. "The Common
Soldiers", by John W. Frazer, is a poem of real merit; whilst "Little
Boy Blue", by W. Hume, is likewise effective. Mr. Hume's pathetic touch
is fervent and in no manner betrays that weakness bordering on the
ridiculous, to which less skillful flights of pathos are prone. "The Two
Springs" is a pleasant moral sermon in verse by Margaret Ellen Cooper.
Concluding the issue is "The Under Dog in the Fight", a vigorous
philosophical poem by Andrew Stevenson.

       *       *       *       *       *

=The Woodbee= for January is distinguished by Mrs. Winifred V. Jordan's
brilliant short poem entitled "Oh, Where is Springtime?" The sentiment
of the piece is an universal one, and the pleasing lines will appeal to
all. "Retribution", by Mrs. Ida C. Haughton, is a clever story, but the
present critic's extreme fondness for cats makes it difficult to review
after reading the first sentence. However, the well-approached
conclusion is indeed just. The "moral" is a pathetic example of
unregeneracy! Miss Edna M. Haughton's critical article is direct and
discerning; the Woodbee Club is fortunate in having among its members so
capable a reviewer. Editor Fritter likewise mounts the reviewer's throne
in this issue, proceeding first of all to demolish our own fond dream of
yesterday; =The Conservative=. Looking backward down the dim vista of
those bygone but memory-haunted days of October, 1915, when we
perpetrated the horribly plainspoken and frightfully ungentle number
whereof Mr. Fritter treats, we are conscious of our manifold sins, and
must beg the pardon of the liquor interests for shouting so rudely in
the cause of total abstinence. Pres. Fritter's critical style is a good
one, and is developing from month to month. His advocacy of lukewarmness
in writing is perhaps not so complete as one might judge from this
article; though his use of the cautious phrase "it is rumored" in
connection with a well known statement seems hardly necessary. Rigid
impartiality, the critic's greatest asset, is manifest throughout the
review, and we thoroughly appreciate the favorable mention not
infrequently accorded us. In passing upon the merits of =Dowdell's
Bearcat=, Mr. Fritter shows equal penetration and perspicuity, and we
are convinced that his rank amongst amateur reviewers is very high.

                                                  H. P. LOVECRAFT,

                   THE UNITED AMATEUR




=The Coyote= for July opens with Harry E. Rieseberg's verses entitled
"The Sum of Life", whose structure is excellent as a whole, though
defective in certain places. The word "mirage" is properly accented on
the second syllable, hence is erroneously situated in the first stanza.
"A mirage forever seeming" is a possible substitute line. Other defects
are the attempted rhymes of "decay" with "constancy", "carried" with
"hurried", and "appalled" with "all". The metre is without exception
correct, and the thoughts and images in general well presented,
wherefore we believe that with a little more care Mr. Rieseberg can
become a very pleasing poet indeed. "The Philippine Question", by Earl
Samuel Harrington, aged 15, is an excellent juvenile essay, and
expresses a very sound opinion concerning our Asiatic colonies. It is
difficult to be patient with the political idiots who advocate the
relinquishment of the archipelago by the United States, either now or at
any future time. The mongrel natives, in whose blood the Malay strain
predominates, are not and never will be racially capable of maintaining
a civilized condition by themselves. "How Fares the Garden Rose?" is a
poem bearing the signature of Winifred Virginia Jordan, which is a
sufficient guarantee of its thorough excellence. "To a Breeze", also by
Mrs. Jordan, is distinguished by striking imagery, and displays in the
epithet "moon-moored", that highly individualistic touch which is
characteristic of its author. "Peace", by Andrew Francis Lockhart, is a
poem of excellent construction, though marred by two serious misprints
which destroy the harmony of the first and third lines.

       *       *       *       *       *

=The Dixie Booster= for March-April is an exceedingly neat and clever
paper from the House of Nixon. "Spring in the South", a poem by Maude K.
Barton, opens the issue in pleasant fashion, the attractive images well
atoning for certain slight mechanical deficiencies. "Dick's Success", by
Gladys L. Bagg, is a short story whose phraseology exhibits considerable
talent and polish. The didactic element is possibly more emphasized than
the plot, though not to a tedious extent. Whether or not a rough draft
of a novel may be completed in the course of a single afternoon, a feat
described in this tale, we leave for the fiction-writing members of the
United to decide! Of the question raised regarding the treatment of the
Indian by the white man in America it is best to admit in the words of
Sir Roger de Coverly, "that much might be said on both sides". Whilst
the driving back of the aborigines has indeed been ruthless and
high-handed, it seems the destiny of the Anglo-Saxon to sweep inferior
races from his path wherever he goes. There are few who love the Indian
so deeply that they would wish this continent restored to its original
condition, peopled by savage nomads instead of civilized colonists. "The
Deuce and Your Add", by Melvin Ryder, is a bit of light philosophy whose
allegorical case is well maintained. "To a Warbler", by Roy W. Nixon, is
a meritorious piece of verse whose rhythm moves with commendable
sprightliness, though the first line of the first stanza might be made
to correspond better with the first line of the second stanza. The word
"apparent" in the last line, seems a little unsuited to the general
style of the poem, being more suggestive of the formal type of
composition. "Grandma", also by Mr. Roy Nixon, is a noble sonnet whose
quality foreshadows real poetical distinction for its author. "You", by
Dora M. Hepner, contains sublime images, but possesses metrical
imperfections. The general anapaestic or dactylic rhythm is much
disturbed by the iambic fourth line of the first stanza. The editorials,
jokes, and jingles in this issue are all clever, and proclaim Mr.
Raymond Nixon as a capable and discriminating editor.

       *       *       *       *       *

=Literary Buds= for February exhibits the amateurs of Harvey, Illinois,
after a long absence from the publishing arena. The present issue,
edited by Mr. Caryl Wilson Dempesy, contains matter of merit and
interest. "The Dells of the Wisconsin", by A. Myron Lambert, is an
interesting account of an outing spent amidst scenes of natural grandeur
and beauty. The author's style is fluent and pleasing, though a few
slight crudities are to be discerned. On page 1, where the height of a
large dam is mentioned, it is stated "that the water must raise that
distance before it can fall". Of course, "=rise=" is the verb which
should have been used. Another erroneous phrase is "nature tract".
"=Nature=" is not an adjective, but a noun; "=natural=" is the correct
word. However, this anomalous use of nouns for adjectives has only too
much prevalence amongst all grades of writers today, and must not be too
harshly censured in this case. On page 4 the word "=onto=" should be
supplanted by "=upon=", and the awkward phrase: "to be convinced that we
had ventured to a place that we did not know any dangers were connected
with", should be changed to something like this: "to convince us that we
had ventured to a seemingly dangerous place whose apparent dangers we
had not then noticed". "A Song of Love", by Editor Dempesy, is cast in
uniformly flowing and regular metre, but some of the words require
comment. "=Lover=" is not generally applied by bards to adored members
of the gentler sex, "=love=" being the conventional term. Likewise, the
phrase "heart which always softly does its beating" might well be
revised with greater attention to poetical precedent. Yet the whole is
of really promising quality, and exhibits a metrical correctness much
above the average. "The Operation" is a very witty sketch by Miss Clara
I. Stalker, with a sudden turn toward the end which arouses the complete
surprise and unexpected mirth of the reader. "The High Cost of
Flivving", by Albert Thompson, is a bright bit of versified humour
involving novel interpretations of certain technical terms of
literature. The swinging dactylic rhythm is well managed except where
the words "descending" and "ascending" occur, and where, in line 24, the
metre becomes momentarily anapaestic.

       *       *       *       *       *

=The Looking Glass= for May is the final number of Mrs. Renshaw's
journal of introductions, and makes known to the association a group of
27 new members. One of the most interesting autobiographies is that of
Mr. J. E. Hoag of Greenwich, New York, whose friendly sentences, written
from the cumulative experience of 85 years of life, possess an elusively
captivating quality. Of the non-biographical matter in this issue, Mrs.
Renshaw's compilation entitled "Writing for Profit" deserves particular
perusal. This is well set off by the same author's colloquial lines,
"Pride O' The Pen", wherein the lethal taint of trade in literature is
effectively deplored. "Something", by David H. Whittier, is a thoughtful
analysis of conditions in the United, with suggestions for improvement.
"One Bright Star Enough For Me", by Mr. John Hartman Oswald of Texas, is
a pious poem reminding one of Mr. Addison's well known effort which
begins: "The spacious firmament on high". We doubt, however, if Mr.
Addison has been much improved upon, since several instances of
imperfect poetical taste are to be found in Mr. Oswald's lines. But
there are evidences of a great soul throughout the ten stanzas, and the
metre is in the main correct. What Mr. Oswald appears to require is a
thorough reading of the English classics, with minute attention to their
phraseology and images. With such study we believe him capable of
development into a poet of enviable force and sincerity.

       *       *       *       *       *

=Toledo Amateur= for April marks the welcome reappearance of Mr. Wesley
H. Porter's neat little journal after a year's absence. "A Story", by
David H. Whittier, possesses a tragical plot whose interest is slightly
marred by triteness and improbable situations. Of the latter we must
point out the strained coincidence whereby four distinct things,
proceeding from entirely unrelated causes, give rise to the final
denouement. The culmination of the aged father's resolve to kill his
enemy, the conditions which make possible the return of the son, the
presence of the enemy's hat and coat under the wayside tree, and the
storm which prompts the son to don these garments, are all independent
circumstances, whose simultaneous occurrence, each at exactly the proper
time to cause the catastrophe, may justly be deemed a coincidence too
great for the purpose of good literature. In an artistically constructed
tale, the various situations all develop naturally out of that original
cause which in the end brings about the climax; a principle which, if
applied to the story in question, would limit the events and their
sequences to those arising either directly or indirectly from the wrong
committed by the father's enemy. Since there is no causative connection
between the immediate decision of the father to kill his foe, and the
developments or discoveries which enable the son to return, the
simultaneous occurrence of these unusual things is scarcely natural.
Superadded to this coincidence are two more extraneous events; the
rather strange presence of the hat and coat near the road, and the
timely or untimely breaking of the storm, the improbability indeed
increasing in geometrical progression with each separate circumstance.
It must, however, be admitted that such quadruple coincidences in
stories are by no means uncommon among even the most prominent and
widely advertised professional fiction-blacksmiths of the day. Mr.
Whittier's style is that of a careful and sincere scholar, and we
believe that his work will become notable in this and the succeeding
amateur journalistic generation. The minuteness of the preceding
criticism has been prompted not by a depreciatory estimate of his
powers, but rather by an appreciative survey of his possibilities. "Say,
Brother", by Mrs. Renshaw, is a poem describing life in the trenches of
the Huns. The metre is quite regular, and the plan of rhyming but once
broken. Mr. Porter's prose work; editorial, introductory, and narrative,
is all pleasing, though, not wholly free from a certain slight looseness
of scholarship. We should advise rigorous exercise in parsing and
rhetoric. "Respite", by Edgar Ralph Cheyney, shows real poetical genius,
and the iambic heptameters are very well handled, save where one
redundant syllable breaks the flow of the last line. Even that would be
perfect if the tongue could condense the noun and article "the music",
into "th' music".

       *       *       *       *       *

=The Tornado= for April constitutes the publishing debut of Mrs. Addie
L. Porter, mother of =Toledo Amateur's= gifted young editor. Mrs.
Porter's "Recollections From Childhood" are pleasant and well phrased,
bringing to mind very vividly the unrivalled joys of Christmas as
experienced by the young. Wesley H. Porter, in "My Vacation", tells
entertainingly of his visit to the hive of the Woodbees last September.
The editorial and news paragraphs are all of attractive aspect,
completing a bright paper whose four pages teem with enthusiasm and
personality. It is to be hoped that other comparatively new United
members may follow Mr. Porter's example in entering the publishing
field; for individual journals, though of no greater size than this, are
ever welcome, and do more than anything else to maintain interest and
promote progress in the association.

       *       *       *       *       *

=The Trail= for April must by no means be confused with Alfred L.
Hutchinson's professionalized magazine of identical title, for this
=Trail= is an older and emphatically non-professional publication issued
co-operatively by Dora M. Hepner and George W. Macauley.
Non-professionalism, indeed, seems to dominate the entire issue to a
degree unusual in the broadened and developed United. With the exception
of one poem and one short story or sketch, the contents are wholly
personal and social. "He Reached my Hand", by Dora M. Hepner, is an
excellent piece of verse, though perhaps not of that extreme polish
which is observed in the productions of very careful bards. Miss Hepner
has great refinement of fancy and vigour of expression, but evidently
neglects to cultivate that beautiful rhetoric and exquisite rhythmic
harmony which impress us so forcibly in the work of scholars and bookmen
like Rheinhart Kleiner. "A Girl of the U. S.", by George W. Macauley, is
a prose piece whose nature seems to waver between that of a story and a
descriptive sketch. Though description apparently preponderates, the
narrative turn toward the conclusion may sanction classification as
fiction. The faults are all faults of imperfect technique rather than of
barren imagination, for Mr. Macauley wields a graphic pen, and adorns
every subject he approaches. In considering minor points, we must remark
the badly fractured infinitive "to no longer walk", and the unusual
word "reliefful". We have never seen the latter expression before, and
though it may possibly be a modernism in good usage, it was certainly
unknown in the days when we attempted to acquire our education. Mr.
Macauley, with his marked descriptive ability, is less at ease in
stories of contemporary life than in historical fiction, particularly
mediaeval and Oriental tales. His genius is not unlike that of Sir
Walter Scott, and shows to especial advantage in annals of knights and
chivalry. "Scratchings" are by the pen of Miss Hepner, and display an
active wit despite the profusion of slang. It would seem, however, that
so brilliant a writer could preserve the desired air of vivacity without
quite so many departures from the standard idioms of our language.

Miss Hepner's remarks on the assimilation of new United members are
worthy of note. The cruder amateurs should not feel discouraged by the
extraordinary average scholarship of the recent element, but should
rather use it as a model for improvement. They should establish
correspondence with the cultivated recruits, thereby not only benefiting
themselves, but helping each gifted newcomer to find a useful and
congenial place amongst us. The present situation is pitifully
ludicrous, for practically all young aspirants call upon only one or two
sadly overburdened older members for literary aid, forgetting that there
are scores of brilliant writers, teachers, and professors waiting
anxiously but vainly to be of real service to their fellow-amateurs.
Several of the scholarly new members have particularly inquired how they
can best assist the association; yet the association, as represented by
its literary novices, has failed to take advantage of most of these
offers of instructions and co-operation. We are impelled here to
reiterate the slogan which Mr. Daas has so frequently printed in his
various journals: "=Welcome the Recruits!=". Such a welcome is certain
to react with double felicity upon the giver.

"From the Michigan Trail" is Mr. Macauley's personal column, and
contains so bitter an attack on some of the United's policies of
improvement, that we are tempted to remonstrate quite loudly. The
captious criticism of the Second Vice-President's invaluable activities,
constructive labours which have practically regenerated the association
and raised it to a higher plane in the world of educational endeavour,
is positively ungenerous. To speak of the article in =Ole Miss'=
entitled "Manuscripts and Silver" as "mercenary", is the summit of
injustice, for it was nothing more or less than the absolutely
gratuitous offer to the United of what is now the Symphony Literary
Service. We are rather at a loss to divine Mr. Macauley's precise notion
of amateur journalism. He speaks of it as a "tarn", but we cannot
believe he would have it so stagnant a thing as that name implies.
Surely, the United is something greater than a superficial fraternal
order composed of mediocre and unambitious dabblers. Progress leads
toward the outside world of letters, and to cavil at work such as Mrs.
Renshaw's is to set obstacles in the path of progress. Professional
literary success on the part of amateur journalists can never react
unfavorably on the United, and it seems far from kind and proper to
impede the development of members. Why is a professional author
necessarily less desirable as an amateur journalist than a professional
plumber or boiler-maker? But there is one sound principle at the base of
Mr. Macauley's argument, which deserves more emphasis than the points he
elaborates. Professionalism must not enter into the workings of the
association, nor should the professionalized amateur take advantage of
amateur connexions to create a market for writings otherwise unsalable.
This applies to the now happily extinct tribe of "ten-cents-a-year"
publishers, who coolly expected all amateur journalists to subscribe to
their worthless misprints as a matter of fraternal obligation. Mr.
Macauley is an extremist on the subject of amateur rating, a fact which
explains many otherwise puzzling allusions in his current editorials.

       *       *       *       *       *

THE UNITED AMATEUR for February is the final number of the Daas regime,
and constitutes a noble valedictory indeed. We find it impossible to
express with sufficient force our regret at the withdrawal of Mr. Daas
from the United, and we can but hope that the retirement may prove
merely temporary. The February official organ is wholly literary in
contents, and in quality sustains the best traditions of amateur
journalism. Miss Olive G. Owen's poem, "Give us Peace!", which opens
the issue, is tasteful in imagery and phraseology, and correct in rhyme
and metre, but contains the customary unrealities and substitutions of
emotion for reasoning which are common to all pacific propaganda. "The
Little Old Lady's Dream", by M. Almedia Bretholl, is a short story of
the almost unpleasantly "realistic" type, whose development and
atmosphere exhibit much narrative talent and literary skill. "The
Teuton's Battle-Song" is an attempt of the present critic to view the
principles of human warfare without the hypocritical spectacles of
sentimentality. "Nature in Literature", by Arthur W. Ashby, is an essay
of unusual quality, revealing a depth of well assimilated scholarship
and a faculty for acute observation and impartial analysis, of which few
amateur writers may justly boast. "His All", is an excellent poem by
Mrs. Ella Colby Eckert, distinguished equally for its noble thought and
facile rhythm. "'Twixt the Red and the White", a short story by Miss
Coralie Austin, displays marked skill in construction and phraseology,
though its development is not without a few of the typical crudities of
youthful work. There is a trifling suspicion of triteness and banality
in plot and dialogue; which is, however, compensated for in the artistic
passages so frequently encountered. "Romance, Mystery, and Art", an
essay by Edgar Ralph Cheyney, reflects the learning and thoughtfulness
of its author. The poetical fragments entitled "Songs from Walpi", by
Mrs. Winifred V. Jordan, describe the hopeless affection of a
Southwestern Indian prince for a maiden of the conquering white race.
The atmosphere and images are cleverly wrought, whilst the rhythm is in
every detail satisfactory. "Nescio Quo", by Kathleen Baldwin, is a poem
of great attractiveness both in structure and sentiment. "A Crisis", by
Eleanor J. Barnhart, is a short story of distinctly modern type, whose
substance and development compare well with professional work. "My Heart
and I", a sonnet by James T. Pyke, exhibits the skill and philosophical
profundity characteristic of its author. "My Native Land", a poem by
Adam Dickson, describes the Scottish Border with pleasing imagery and
bounding anapaestic metre. Mr. Dickson is a poet whose progress should
be carefully watched. His improvement is steady, the present piece being
easily the best specimen of his work to appear in the amateur press.
"Poetry and its Power", by Helen M. Woodruff, is a delightful essay
containing liberal quotations from various classic bards. "A
Resolution", by Harry Z. Moore, seems to be modelled after Mrs.
Renshaw's well known poem, "A Symphony". The various precepts are
without exception sound and commendable. Helene E. Hoffman presents a
brief but pleasing critique of Sir Thomas Browne's "Hydriotaphia,
Urn-Burial; or a Discourse of the Sepulchral Urns lately found in
Norfolk". It is refreshing to discover a modern reader who can still
appreciate the quaint literature of the seventeenth century, and Miss
Hoffman is to be thanked for her sympathetic review of the pompous,
Latinised phrases of the old physician. "He and She", by Margaret A.
Richard, is a thoroughly meritorious poem whose two "allowable rhymes",
"fair-dear", and "head-prayed", would be censured only by a critic of
punctilious exactitude. "At Sea", a witty bit of =vers de societe= by
Henry Cleveland Wood, forms an appropriately graceful conclusion to a
richly enjoyable issue of the magazine.

       *       *       *       *       *

THE UNITED AMATEUR for March brings to the fore Mr. George S.
Schilling's unusual editorial talent, and makes manifest the bright
future of the official organ for the balance of the present
administrative year. The chief literary contribution is "Hail, Autumn!",
one of Mr. Arthur Ashby's brilliant and scholarly essays on Nature. The
quality of Mr. Ashby's work deserves particular attention for its
reflective depth of thought, and glowing profusion of imagery. His style
is remarkably mature, and escapes completely that subtle suggestion of
the schoolboy's composition which seems inseparable from the average
amateur's attempts at natural description and philosophizing. Mr.
Schilling's editorials are forcible and straightforward, vibrant with
enthusiasm for the welfare of the association. "A Representative
Official Organ", by Paul J. Campbell, serves to explain the author's
highly desirable constitutional amendment proposed for consideration at
the coming election, which will open the columns of THE UNITED AMATEUR
to the general membership at a very reasonable expense. The News Notes
in the present issue are sprightly and interesting.

       *       *       *       *       *

THE UNITED AMATEUR for April is made brilliant by the presence of Henry
Clapham McGavack's terse and lucid exposure of hyphenated hypocrisy,
entitled "Dr. Burgess, Propagandist". Mr. McGavack's phenomenally virile
and convincing style is supported by a remarkable fund of historical and
diplomatic knowledge, and the feeble fallacies of the pro-German embargo
advocates collapse in speedy fashion before the polished but vigorous
onslaughts of his animated pen. Another essay inspired by no superficial
thinking is Edgar Ralph Cheyney's "Nietzschean Philosophy", wherein some
of the basic precepts of the celebrated iconoclast are set forth in
comprehensive array. "The Master Voice of Ages Calls for Peace", a poem
by Mrs. Frona Scott, has fairly regular metre, though its sentiment is
one of conventional and purely emotional pacifism. "A Gentle Satire on
Friendship", by Freda de Larot, is a very clever piece of light prose;
which could, however, be improved by the deletion of much slang, and the
rectification of many loose constructions. "A Wonderful Play" is Mrs.
Eloise R. Griffith's well worded review of Jerome K. Jerome's "The
Passing of the Third Floor Back", as enacted by Forbes-Robertson. Mrs.
Griffith has here, as in all her essays, achieved a quietly pleasing
effect, and pointed a just moral. "Fire Dreams" is a graphic and
commendably regular poem by Mrs. Renshaw. "The Beach", a poem by O. M.
Blood, requires grammatical emendation. "How better could the hours been
spent" and "When life and love true pleasure brings" cannot be excused
even by the exigencies of rhyme and metre. After the second stanza, the
couplet form shifts in an unwarranted manner to the quatrain
arrangement. The phraseology of the entire piece displays poetical
tendencies yet reveals a need for their assiduous cultivation through
reading and further practice. "My Shrine", by James Laurence Crowley,
exhibits real merit both in wording and metre, yet has a rather weak
third stanza. The lines:

    "One day I crossed the desert sands;
    One day I ride my train;"

are obviously anticlimactic. To say that the subject is trite would be a
little unjust to Mr. Crowley's Muse, for all amatory themes, having been
worked over since the very dawn of poesy, are necessarily barren of
possibilities save to the extremely skilled metrist. Contemporary
love-lyrics can scarcely hope to shine except through brilliant and
unexpected turns of wit, or extraordinarily tuneful numbers. The
following lines by Margaret, Duchess of Newcastle, who died in 1673,
well express the situation despite their crudeness:

    "O Love, how thou art tired out with rhyme!
    Thou art a tree whereon all poets climb;
    And from thy branches every one takes some
    Of the sweet fruit, which Fancy feeds upon.
    But now thy tree is left so bare and poor,
    That they can hardly gather one plum more!"

"Indicatory", a brilliant short sketch by Ethel Halsey, well illustrates
the vanity of the fair, and completes in pleasing fashion a very
creditable number of our official magazine.

       *       *       *       *       *

THE UNITED AMATEUR for May forms still another monument to the taste and
energy of our official editor, Mr. Schilling. Biography is the keynote
of the current issue, Mrs. Renshaw, Mr. J. E. Hoag, and Mr. Henry
Cleveland Wood each receiving mention. Miss Emilie C. Holladay displays
a pleasing prose style in her account of our Second Vice-President, and
arouses interest with double force through the introduction of juvenile

"Happiness Defined" is a delightful little sketch by Ida C. Haughton,
whose philosophy will awake an universal response from the breasts of
the majority. "The Wind Fairies", by Jean F. Barnum, is a poem in prose
which contains more of the genuine poetic essence than does the average
contemporary versified effort. The grace and grandeur of the clouds and
the atmosphere have in all ages been admired, and it is but natural that
they figure to a great extent in the beautiful legends of primitive
mythology. "The Ship that Sails Away", by J. E. Hoag, is a delicate and
attractive poem whose images and phraseology are equally meritorious.
Mr. Hoag's poetical attainments are such that we await with eagerness
the appearance of the pieces predicted in his biography. "To Flavia", by
Chester Pierce Munroe, is a sweet lyric addressed to a young child and
pervaded throughout with a quaintly whimsical, almost Georgian,
semblance of stately gallantry. The first word of the seventeenth line
should read "=small=" instead of "=swell=". As misprinted, this line
conveys a rather incongruous impression. "Mountains in Purple Robes of
Mist", a vivid and powerful poem of Nature by Rev. Eugene B. Kuntz, is
cast in Alexandrine quatrains, a rather uncommon measure. The only
possible defect is in line thirteen, where the accent of the word
"sublime" seems to impede the flow of the metre. Line nineteen
apparently lacks two syllables, but the deficiency is probably
secretarial or typographical rather than literary. "Man as Cook", also
by Dr. Kuntz, is a clever bit of humorous verse in octosyllabic
couplets. "Consolation" well exhibits Andrew Francis Lockhart's
remarkable progress as a poet. His verse is increasing every day in
polish, and is fast becoming one of the most pleasing and eagerly
awaited features of amateur letters. "At the End of the Road", by Mary
Faye Durr, is a graphic and touching description of a deserted
schoolhouse. The atmosphere of pensive reminiscence is well sustained by
the judiciously selected variety of images and allusions. "There's None
Like Mine at Home", by James Laurence Crowley, is a characteristic bit
of Crowleian sentimentality which requires revision and condensation.
There is not enough thought to last out three stanzas of eight lines
each. Technically we must needs shudder at the apparent incurable use of
"m-n" assonance. "Own" and "known" are brazenly and repeatedly flaunted
with "roam" and "home" in attempted rhyme. But the crowning splendour of
impossible assonance is attained in the "Worlds-girls" atrocity. Mr.
Crowley needs a long session with the late Mr. Walker's well-known
Rhyming Dictionary! Metrically, Mr. Crowley is showing a decided
improvement of late. The only censurable points in the measure of this
piece are the redundant syllables in lines 1 and 3, which might in each
case be obviated by the substitution of "=I've=" for "=I have=", and the
change of form in the first half of the concluding stanza. Of the
general phraseology and imagery we may only remark that Mr. Crowley has
much to forget, as well as to learn, before he can compete with Mr.
Kleiner or other high-grade amatory poets in the United. Such
expressions as "my guiding star", "my own dear darling Kate", or "she's
the sweetest girl that e'er on earth did roam", tell the whole sad story
to the critical eye and ear. If Mr. Crowley would religiously eschew the
popular songs and magazine "poetry" of the day, and give over all his
time to a perusal of the recognized classics of English verse, the
result would immediately be reflected in his own compositions. As yet,
he claims to be independent of scholarly tradition, but we must remind
him of the Latin epigram of Mr. Owen, which Mr. Cowper thus translated
under the title of "Retaliation":

    "The works of ancient bards divine,
      Aulus, thou scorn'st to read;
    And should posterity read thine,
      It would be strange indeed!"

So energetic and prolific a writer as Mr. Crowley owes it alike to
himself and to his readers to develop as best he can the talent which
rests latent within him.

       *       *       *       *       *

=The Woodbee= for April opens with a melodious poem by Adam Dickson,
entitled "Love". While the metre might well be changed in the interests
of uniformity, the general effect is not at all harsh, and the author is
entitled to no small credit for his production. The only other poem in
the magazine is "Alone With Him", by Mrs. Ida C. Haughton. This piece is
remarkable for its rhyming arrangement, each rhyme being carried through
four lines instead of the usual couplet. The sentiments are just, the
images well drawn, and the technique correct; the whole forming a highly
commendable addition to amateur literature. "The Melody and Colour of
'The Lady of Shalott'", by Mary Faye Durr, is a striking Tennysonian
critique, whose psychological features, involving a comparison of
chromatic and poetic elements, are ingenious and unusual. Miss Durr is
obviously no careless student of poesy, for the minute analyses of
various passages give evidence of thorough assimilation and intelligent
comprehension. "On Being Good", by Newton A. Thatcher, contains sound
sense and real humour, whilst its pleasingly familiar style augurs well
for Mr. Thatcher's progress in this species of composition. "War
Reflections", by Herbert Albing, is an apt and thoughtful epitome of the
compensating benefits given to mankind by the present belligerent
condition of the world. The cogent and comprehensive series of reviews
by Miss Edna M. Haughton, and the crisp and pertinent paragraphs by
Editor Fritter, combine with the rest of =The Woodbee's= contents to
produce an issue uniformly meritorious.

                                                  H. P. LOVECRAFT,



An Epistle to RHEINHART KLEINER, Esq., Poet-Laureate, and Author of
"Another Endless Day".

    _Beatus ille qui procul negotiis,
      Ut prisca gens mortalium,
    Paterna rura bobus exercet suis._

    KLEINER! in whose quick pulses wildly beat
    The youth's ambition, and the lyrist's heat,
    Whose questing spirit scorns our lowly flights,
    And dares the heavens for sublimer heights:
    If passion's force will grant an hour's relief,
    Attend a calmer song, nor nurse thy grief.
    What is true bliss? Must mortals ever yearn
    For stars beyond their reach, and vainly burn;
    Must suff'ring man, impatient, seek to scale
    Forbidden steeps, where sharper pangs prevail?
    Alas for him who chafes at soothing ease,
    And cries for fever'd joys and pains to please:
    They please a moment, but the pleasure flies,
    And the rack'd soul, a prey to passion, dies.
    Away, false lures! and let my spirit roam
    O'er sweet Arcadia, and the rural home;
    Let my sad heart with no new sorrow bleed,
    But rest content in Morven's mossy mead.
    Wild thoughts and vain ambitions circle near,
    Whilst I, at peace, the abbey chimings hear.
    Loud shakes the surge of Life's unquiet sea,
    Yet smooth the stream that laves the rustic lea.
    Let others feel the world's destroying thrill,
    As 'midst the kine I haunt the verdant hill.
    Rise, radiant sun! to light the grassy glades,
    Whose charms I view from grateful beechen shades;
    O'er spire and peak diffuse th' expanding gleam
    That gilds the grove, and sparkles on the stream.
    Awake! ye sylphs of Flora's gorgeous train,
    To scent the fields, and deck the rising main.
    Soar, feathered flock, and carol o'er the scene,
    To cheer the lonely watcher on the green.
    Sweet is the song the morning meadow bears,
    And with the darkness fade ambitious cares:
    Above the abbey tow'r the rays ascend,
    As light and peace in matchless beauty blend.
    Why should I sigh for realms of toil and stress,
    When now I bask in Nature's loveliness;
    What thoughts so great, that they must needs expand
    Beyond the hills that bound this fragrant land?
    These friendly hills my infant vision knew,
    And in the shelt'ring vale from birth I grew.
    Yon distant spires Ambition's limit show,
    For who, here born, could farther wish to go?
    When sky-blest evening soothes the world and me,
    Are moon and stars more distant from my lea?
    No urban glare my sight of heav'n obscures,
    And orbs undimm'd rise o'er the neighb'ring moors.
    What priceless boon may spreading Fame impart,
    When village dignity hath cheer'd the heart?
    The little group that hug the tavern fire
    To air their wisdom, and salute their squire,
    Far kinder are, than all the courtly throng
    That flatter Kings, and shield their faults in song!
    And in the end; what if no man adore
    My senseless ashes 'neath Westminster's floor?
    May not my weary frame, at Life's dim night,
    Sleep where my childhood first enjoy'd the light?
    Rest were the sweeter in the sacred shade
    Of that dear fane where all my fathers pray'd;
    Ancestral spirits bless the air around,
    And hallow'd mem'ries fill the gentle ground.
    So stay, belov'd Content! nor let my soul
    In fretful passion seek a farther goal.
    Apollo, chasing Daphne, gain'd his prize,
    But lo! she turn'd to wood before his eyes!
    Our earthly prizes, though as holy sought,
    Prove just as fleeting, and decay to naught.
    Enduring bliss a man may only find
    In virtuous living, and contented mind.

                                    H. P. LOVECRAFT.




Following a novel idea originated by the present Columbus
administration, the Department of Public Criticism will herewith submit
for the first time in its history an annual report, or summary of the
preceding year's literary events within the United Amateur Press

The programme of improvement informally decided upon in the official
year of 1913-1914 received its definite ratification at the Rocky Mount
Convention, when the assembled representatives of the United pledged
"Individual collective support" to Mr. Fritter, the new President, in
his endeavors to raise the literary standard of our society, and when an
absolutely unanimous vote invested Mrs. J. W. Renshaw, the leading
spirit of progress, with the important office of Second Vice-President.
Pres. Fritter has since discharged his obligations and sustained his
responsibilities in a thoroughly satisfactory manner despite many trying
difficulties, whilst Mrs. Renshaw, as a recruiter, has succeeded in
laying the foundations of a completely broadened, elevated, and
rejuvenated association. Yet all that has been accomplished is merely
the prologue of that greater period of change which must bring about the
final assimilation of Mrs. Renshaw's phenomenally gifted recruits, and
the materialization of the still nebulous plans evolved during the past

The undersigned has on several occasions advocated the formation of a
regular "Department of Instruction" in the United, to be conducted by
professional teachers and college instructors for the purpose of guiding
the more or less inexperienced members. He has communicated his idea to
several high-school preceptors of great ability, and has learned that
under present conditions such a department is not perfectly feasible. It
has been suggested that if each experienced and educated amateur would
assume a personal and sympathetic advisory position toward some one of
the younger or cruder members, much actual good might result. As our
list now stands, the crude and the cultured are perhaps evenly balanced,
yet instant success even in this modified course can scarcely be
expected. At least another year seems to be required, in which the
various members may gain a closer knowledge of each other through the
wider diffusion of their printed efforts. However, the need for a more
uniformly educated membership is pressing, and the undersigned will
welcome aid or advice of any kind from those willing to assist him in
establishing some sort of scholastic Department.

Another idea which has received undeserved neglect and discouraging
opposition is the Authors' Placing Bureau or "United Literary Service",
as outlined by the Second Vice-President. The normal goal of the amateur
writer is the outside world of letters, and the United should certainly
be able to provide improved facilities for the progress of its members
into the professional field. The objections offered to this plan are
apparently less vital than those affecting the Department of
Instruction, and it is to be hoped that the mistaken zeal of our
non-professional sticklers may not serve to prevent a step so sorely

Passing on to the details of Departmental work, the undersigned is
pleased to report a remarkable increase in the literary value of the
compositions brought forth in the United this year; an increase which
may be fairly declared to constitute a true elevation of our
intellectual standard, and which undoubtedly compensates for the present
regrettable paucity of amateur publishing media. In verse, particularly,
is the advance notable. Some of our poets are securing recognition in
the outside world of letters, whilst many lesser bards show a steady
upward trend in their amateur efforts. Prose continues to suffer because
of the seemingly unavoidable brevity of the average amateur journal. It
is impossible to crowd any really well developed piece of prose within
the limits generally assigned, hence our best authors seem almost to be
driven into verse as a medium of expression. Financial prosperity of
sufficient extent to ensure the publication of larger papers is
obviously the only remedy for this deplorable condition.

Of our poets, the Laureate Rheinhart Kleiner (also Laureate of the
National for 1916-1917) continues as the foremost technician and
harmonist. His accurate and tasteful lines satisfy the ear and the
understanding with equal completeness, and he shows no sign of yielding
to the corrupting influences of decadent modern standards. In his own
journal, =The Piper=, he reveals a versatile and phenomenally well
stocked mind. The September number, containing imitations of the work of
other amateur poets, will long be remembered. Mrs. Renshaw maintains her
high place as a philosophical and expressionistic bard, though hampered
by unusual theories of spontaneous versification. A greater deference to
the human ear and metrical sense would render her already lofty poetry
as attractive as it is exalted. Miss Olive G. Owen, former Laureate, has
lately returned to activity, and may well be expected to duplicate her
former successes in the domain of the Muses. The poetical progress of
Andrew Francis Lockhart is a notable feature of amateur letters this
year. Mr. Lockhart has always possessed the true genius of the bard,
writing ably and voluminously; but his recent technical care is bringing
out hitherto undiscovered beauties in his verse, and placing him in the
very front rank of United poets. "Benediction" and "Consolation" are
vastly above the average.

Of the new poets of prime magnitude who have risen above our horizon
during the past year, Mrs. Winifred Virginia Jordan of Newton Centre,
Mass., deserves especial mention both for high quality and great volume
of work. Mrs. Jordan's poetry is of a tunefully delicate and highly
individualistic sort which has placed it in great demand amongst amateur
editors, and it is not unlikely that the author may be rewarded with a
Laureateship at no distant date. The work is invariably of spontaneously
graceful rhythm and universally pleasing in sentiment, having frequently
an elusive suggestion of the unreal. A few of Mrs. Jordan's poems are of
the grimly weird and powerful variety. "The Song of the North Wind" is a
remarkable contribution to amateur letters, and has won the enthusiastic
admiration of the United's poetical element. Professional success has
recently crowned the efforts of Mrs. Jordan. =Weekly Unity= for June 17
contains her lines on "The Singing Heart", whilst several other poems
from her pen have been accepted by =The National Magazine=. Rev. James
Tobey Pyke is another poet of the first order whose writings have lately
enriched the literature of the United. His style is correct, and his
thought deep and philosophical. "The Meadow Cricket" is a poem which
deserved more than a superficial perusal. John Russell, formerly of
Scotland but now of Florida, is a satirist and dialect writer of
enviable talent. His favorite measure is the octosyllabic couplet, and
in his skilled hands this simple metre assumes a new and sparkling
lustre. Rev. Frederick Chenault is a prolific lyrical poet whose
sentiments are of uniform loftiness. The substitution of exact rhyme for
assonance in his lines would double the already immense merit of his
work. Other new bards of established ability are W. S. Harrison,
Kathleen Baldwin, Eugene B. Kuntz, Mary Evelyn Brown, Henry Cleveland
Wood, John W. Frazier, William Hume, Ella Colby Eckert, J. E. Hoag,
Edgar Ralph Cheyney, Margaret A. Richard, William de Ryee, Helen H.
Salls, and Jeanette Aylworth.

Of the poets whom we may term "rising", none presents a more striking
figure than Ira A. Cole of Bazine, Kansas. Previously well known as a
prose writer and publisher, he made his debut as a metrist just a year
ago, through a very beautiful piece in the heroic couplet entitled "A
Dream of the Golden Age". Mr. Cole is one of the few survivors of the
genuine classic school, and constitutes a legitimate successor to the
late Georgian poets. His development has been of extraordinary rapidity,
and he will shortly surprise the amateur public both by a poetic drama
called "The Pauper and the Prince", and by a long mythological poem not
unlike Moore's "Lalla Rookh". The natural and pantheistic character of
Mr. Cole's philosophy adapts him with phenomenal grace to his position
as a mirror of classical antiquity. Another developing poet is Mr. Roy
Wesley Nixon of Florida. "Grandma", his latest published composition, is
a sonnet of real merit. Adam Dickson, a Scotsman by birth, but now a
resident of Los Angeles, writes tunefully and pleasantly. His pieces are
not yet of perfect polish, but each exhibits improvement over the
preceding. He tends to favor the anapaest and the iambic tetrameter.
Mrs. Ida Cochran Haughton of Columbus is scarcely a novice, but her
latest pieces are undeniably showing a great increase of technical
grace. Chester Pierce Munroe of North Carolina is a delicate amatory
lyrist of the Kleiner type. He has the quaint and attractive Georgian
touch, particularly evident in "To Flavia" and "To Chloris". Miss M.
Estella Shufelt is absolutely new to the kingdom of poesy, yet has
already produced work of phenomenal sweetness and piety. Mrs. E. L.
Whitehead, though formerly confined wholly to prose, has entered the
poetical field with intelligent and discriminating care. Her words are
thoughtfully weighed and selected, whilst her technique has rapidly
assumed a scholarly exactitude. Two new poets whose work requires much
technical improvement are Mrs. Agnes R. Arnold and Mr. George M.
Whiteside. Mr. Whiteside has indications of qualities not far remote
from genius, and would be well repaid by a rigorous course of study.
Messrs. John Hartman Oswald and James Laurence Crowley are both gifted
with a fluency and self-sufficiency which might prove valuable assets in
a study of poesy. W. F. Booker of North Carolina possesses phenomenal
grace, which greater technical care would develop into unusual power.
Rev. Robert L. Selle, D. D., of Little Rock, Arkansas, is inspired by
sincerest religious fervor, and has produced a voluminous quantity of
verse whose orthodoxy is above dispute. Mrs. Maude K. Barton writes
frequently and well, though her technical polish has not yet attained
its maximum. John Osman Baldwin of Ohio is a natural poet of spontaneous
grace, though requiring cultivation in correct style.

From the foregoing estimate it may easily be gathered that imperfect
technique is the cardinal sin of the average amateur poet. We have among
us scores of writers blest with beautiful thoughts and attractive
fluency, yet the number of precise versifiers may be counted on one's
fingers. Our association needs increased requirements in classic
scholarship and literary exactitude. At present, it is impossible for an
impartial critic to give unstinted approval to the technique of any well
known United poet save Rheinhart Kleiner.

Turning to the consideration of our prose writers, the undersigned finds
it difficult to render a true judgment, owing to the adverse conditions
mentioned earlier in this report. Many fluent pens are doubtless cramped
into feebleness through want of space.

Fiction is among us the least developed of all the branches of
literature. Really good stories are rare phenomena, whilst even
mediocrity is none too common. The best short stories of the year are
probably those by M. Almedia Bretholl and Eleanor Barnhart; the others
are mainly juvenile work. Roy W. Nixon and Miss Coralie Austin represent
the extremes of excitement and tameness, with "A Bottle of Carbolic
Acid" on the one hand, and with "Jane" and "'Twixt the Red and the
White" on the other. Both of these authors possess substantial ability.
David H. Whittier is developing along classic lines, and will be a
prominent figure in the next generation of amateur journalists. Mr.
Moe's pupils are all good story-tellers, the work of Miss Gladys L. Bagg
standing forth quite prominently this year. Florence Brugger's "Tale of
the Sea" is a graphic narrative from a youthful pen, as is William
Dowdell's "Behind the Canvas Wall", in a somewhat different way.
Henriette and Florenz Ziegfeld have each contributed excellent work, nor
must Mary M. Sisson's "Tempora Mutantur" be forgotten.

The rather loosely defined domain of the "sketch" has thriven this year,
since it elicits fluent expression from those less prolific in other
branches of literature. Mr. Melvin Ryder has entertained us with an
entire magazine of this sort of material, whilst Mrs. Ida C. Haughton,
Irene Metzger, Benjamin Repp, Mary Faye Durr, Ethel Halsey, Clara Inglis
Stalker, Freda de Larot, Helene E. Hoffman Cole, Helen M. Woodruff, Ira
A. Cole, and Eloise N. Griffith prove no less entertaining with shorter

Criticism is well represented by Leo Fritter, Edna M. Haughton, Mrs.
J. W. Renshaw, and Rheinhart Kleiner. The latter is no less gifted a
critic than a poet, and gives out very acute judgments in his journal,
=The Piper=.

In viewing the formal essays of the year, one is impressed with the
profusion of mere schoolboy compositions. Masters of the Addisonian art
are few but those few almost atone for the general lack of polish. Henry
Clapham McGavack leads the list with a clarity of style and keenness of
reasoning unsurpassed in the association. His "Dr. Burgess,
Propagandist" is an amateur classic. Edgar Ralph Cheyney is an extreme
radical, but is none the less a masterful essayist. His articles take a
very high rank both for thoughtfulness and for diction. A third writer
of unusual power and analytical depth is Arthur W. Ashby, whose essays
on the varied aspects of Nature command our serious attention. The two
Schillings, George and Samuel, deserve more than a passing mention,
whilst Pres. Fritter's Laureateship well attests his merit. Rev. E. P.
Parham has produced work of attractive quality. Joseph W. Renshaw's
essays and editorials command notice whenever beheld; whilst Ira A.
Cole, ever versatile, will shortly display his epistolary skill in the
now unpublished series of "Churchill-Tutcombie Letters". William T.
Harrington has progressed by leaps and bounds to a prominent place
amongst our essay-writers, his able encomiums of Old England being a
delightful feature of the year. It would be gratifying to speak of
Maurice W. Moe's splendid style and terse English at this point, for he
is one of our very foremost essayists; but his enforced inactivity in
amateur journalism this year has deprived us of any current specimens
save the brief editorial in the February =Pippin=.

The general quality of our prose is by no means satisfactory. Too many
of our authors are contaminated with modern theories which cause them to
abandon grace, dignity, and precision, and to cultivate the lowest forms
of slang.

Papers and magazines have been neither ample nor numerous this year; in
fact, the tendency of the times appears to be a centralization of effort
in THE UNITED AMATEUR; something which is for many reasons to be
applauded, and for a few reasons to be deplored. Those members who feel
capable of issuing individual papers should be encouraged to do so;
whilst those who are ordinarily silent, should be encouraged to join the
contributing staff of THE UNITED AMATEUR as provided by the Campbell

The best individual journal of the year is =Ole Miss'=. For frequency
and regularity, =The Scot=, =The Woodbee=, =The Dixie Booster=, and =The
Coyote= are to be commended. THE UNITED AMATEUR has prospered as a
monthly despite adverse conditions. The elaborate September, October and
February numbers put us in deep debt to Mr. Edward F. Daas, while
subsequent examples of good editorship must be accredited to Mr. George
Schilling. It is gratifying to note the increasing literary character of
the Official Organ; purely official numbers are invariably tedious, many
of the long, detailed reports being quite superfluous. It is a strong
and sincere hope of the undersigned, that Mr. Daas may rejoin us at and
after the present convention. The resumption of =The Lake Breeze= would
supply a pressing need. Mr. Moitoret's =Cleveland Sun=, which promises
to be a frequently issued paper, made its first appearance lately, and
will, after much of its "loudness" has been removed, be of substantial
benefit to new members. The "sporting" features should be eliminated at
once, as not only being in bad taste, but exerting a noxious influence
over the literary development of the younger members.

While upon the subject of papers, the undersigned would like to enter a
renewed protest against the persistent use of certain distorted forms of
spelling commonly called "simplified". These wretched innovations,
popular amongst the less educated element during the past decade, are
now becoming offensively prominent in certain periodicals of supposedly
better grade, and require concerted opposition on the part of all
friends of our language. The advantages claimed for the changes are
almost wholly unsubstantial, whilst the inevitable disadvantages are
immense. Let us see fewer "thrus" and "thoros" in the amateur press!

What the association needs above all things is a return to earlier forms
in prose and verse alike; to poetry that does not pain the ear, and
paragraphs that do not affront the aesthetic sense of the reader. If our
writers would pay more attention to the tasteful Georgian models, they
would produce work of infinitely less cacophonous quality. Almost every
one of our authors who is familiar with the literature of the past, is
distinguished by exceptional grace and fluency of composition.

As this report draws toward its conclusion, a few minor aims of the
Department of Public Criticism are to be noted. It is now the desire of
the undersigned to aid authors in rectifying the injustices to which
they are subjected by the wretched typography of most amateur journals.
Writers are hereby encouraged to transmit to this Department corrected
copies of all misprinted work, the corrections to be made public in THE
UNITED AMATEUR. By this method it is hoped that no amateur journalist
will again be forced to suffer for faults not his own, as so many have
suffered in the past. Of course, the critical reports themselves are
frequently misprinted, but the vast majority of mistakes may with care
be eliminated.

Concerning the name of this association, which a number wish changed in
a manner that will eliminate the word "amateur", the undersigned feels
that the sentiment of the veteran element is too strongly against such a
move to warrant its immediate adoption. The primary object is the
training of young writers before they have attained the professional
grade, wherefore the present title is by no means such a misnomer as
might be inferred from the talents of the more cultivated members.
However, the proposed alteration is certainly justified in many ways,
hence the idea should be deferred rather than abandoned altogether.

The wane of interest in amateur political affairs is to be commended as
a recognition of the superior importance of literary matters. Amateur
journalism is rapidly progressing nearer and nearer its ideal: a device
for the instruction of the young and crude, and an aid for the obscure
author of any sort, rather than a playground for the aimless and the

Last of all, the undersigned wishes to thank the membership for its kind
reception of the Department's reports. It is ever the Chairman's design
to render impartial judgment, and if harshness or captiousness may at
any time have been noticed in the reports, it has in each case been
unintentional. An ideal of sound conservatism has been followed, but in
no instance has the critic sought to enforce upon others that peculiarly
archaic style of which he is personally fond, and which he is accustomed
to employ in his own compositions. The Department of Public Criticism
aspires to be of substantial assistance to the members of the United,
and hopes next year to co-operate with Mr. Lockhart in presenting
reviews of truly constructive quality.

Solicitous for the approval, and confident of the indulgence of the
association, the Department herewith has the honor to conclude its first
annual report; in the hope that such a summary of events and estimate of
conditions may be of use to the incoming administration.

                                                  H. P. LOVECRAFT,



=The Amateur Special= for July is a voluminous magazine of credentials
and other work of new members, edited by Mrs. E. L. Whitehead, retiring
Eastern Manuscript Manager, with the assistance of the Recruiting
Committee. Of all papers lately issued in the United, this is without
doubt among the most valuable and most significant; since it is the
pioneer of the new regime, whereby the talent of all our membership is
to be brought out by better publishing facilities. Mrs. Whitehead, with
notable generosity, has reserved for herself but one page, on which we
find a clever and correct bit of verse, and a number of graceful
acknowledgments and useful suggestions. The contents in general are well
calculated to display the thorough literary excellence and supremacy of
the United in its present condition; for in this collection of stories,
poems, and articles, taken practically at random from the manuscript
bureaus, there is scarce a line unworthy of commendation.

"Tatting", by Julian J. Crump, is a fluent and graceful colloquial
sketch. "Mother and Child", by J. E. Hoag, is a sombre and thoughtful
poem having a certain atmosphere of mysticism. The metre, which is well
handled, consists of regular iambic pentameter quatrains with a couplet
at the conclusion. An annoying misprint mars the first stanza, where
"=sigh=" is erroneously rendered as "=sight=". "Homesick for the
Spring", a poem by Bessie Estelle Harvey, displays real merit in thought
and construction alike. "Mother Earth", by Rev. E. P. Parham, is a well
adorned little essay in justification of the traditional saying that
"the earth is mother of us all". George M. Whiteside, a new member of
the United, makes his first appearance before us as a poet in "The
Little Freckled Face Kid". Mr. Whiteside's general style is not unlike
that of the late James Whitcomb Riley, and its prevailing air of homely
yet pleasing simplicity is well maintained. "To Chloris", by Chester
Pierce Munroe, is a smooth and melodious amatory poem of the Kleiner
school. The imagery is refined, and the polish of the whole amply
justifies the inevitable triteness of the theme. The word "=adorns=", in
next the last line, should read "=adorn=". "A Dream", by Helen Harriet
Salls, is a hauntingly mystical succession of poetic images cast in
appropriate metre. The natural phenomena of the morning are vividly
depicted in a fashion possible only to the true poet. The printer has
done injustice to this exquisite phantasy in three places. In the first
stanza "=wonderous=" should read "=wondrous=", while in the seventh
stanza "=arient=" should be "=orient=". "=Thou'st=", in the eleventh
stanza, should be "=Thou'rt=". "Prayers", a religious poem by Rev.
Robert L. Selle, D. D., displays the classic touch of the eighteenth
century in its regular octosyllabic couplets, having some resemblance to
the work of the celebrated Dr. Watts. "Snow of the Northland", by M.
Estella Shufelt, is a religious poem of different sort, whose tuneful
dactylic quatrains contain much noble and appropriate metaphor. In the
final line the word "=re-cleaned=" should read "=re-cleansed=". "In
Passing By", by Sophie Lea Fox, is a meritorious poem of the thoughtful,
introspective type, which has been previously honoured with professional
publication. "A Time to Sing", by M. B. Andrews, introduces to the
United another genuine poet of worth. The lines are happy in inspiration
and finished in form, having only one possible defect, the use of
"=heralding=" as a dissyllable. "The Stately Mountains", by Rev. Eugene
B. Kuntz, D. D., is a notable contribution to amateur poetic literature.
Dr. Kuntz chooses as his favourite metre the stately Alexandrine; and
using it in a far more flexible and ingenious manner than that of
Drayton, he manages to achieve a dignified and exalted atmosphere
virtually impossible in any other measure. The even caesural break so
common to Alexandrines, and so often urged by critics as an objection
against them, is here avoided with great ingenuity and good taste. Dr.
Kuntz's sentiments and phrases are as swelling and sublime as one might
expect from his metre. His conception of Nature is a broad and noble
one, and his appreciation of her beauties is that of the innate poet.
"An April Memory" acquaints us with W. Frank Booker, a gifted lyrist
whose lines possess all the warmth, witchery and grace of his native
Southland. James J. Hennessey, in his essay on "The Army in Times of
Peace", exhibits very forcibly the various indispensable services so
quietly and efficiently performed by the United States Army in every-day
life. Mr. Hennessey makes plain the great value of having among us a
body of keen, versatile, and well-trained men ready for duty of any
sort, and ever alert for their country's welfare in peace or in war. The
American Soldier well deserves Mr. Hennessey's tribute, and the present
essay adds one more to the already incontrovertible array of arguments
in favour of an adequate military system. As printed, the article is
marred by a superfluous letter "=s=" on the very last word, which should
read "=citizen=". "Sowing the Good", a brief bit of moralizing by Horace
Fowler Goodwin, contains a serious misprint, for the final word of line
1, stanza 2, should be "=say=". "Bobby's Literary Lesson", by Gladys L.
Bagg, is a delightful specimen of domestic satire in prose. The handling
of the conversation exhibits Miss Bagg as a writer of considerable skill
and promise. "The Leaf", a clever poem of Nature by Emily Barksdale,
contains some gruesome atrocities by the printer. In the second stanza
"=it's=" should be "=it=", and "=wonderous=" should be "=wondrous=". In
the third stanza the typographical artist has killed a pretty woodland
"=copse=" with the letter "=r=", so that it reads "=corpse="! In the
fourth stanza "=head=" should read "=heard=". Perhaps the "=r=" which
murdered the "=copse=" escaped from this sadly mutilated word! In stanza
five, "=Chaots=" should be "=chants=". But why continue the painful
chronicle? Mr. Kleiner said just what we would like to say about
misprints over a year ago, when he wrote "The Rhyme of the Hapless
Poet"! "Submission", by Eugene B. Kuntz, is a delightful bit of light
prose, forming the autobiography of a much-rejected manuscript. This
piece well exhibits Dr. Kuntz's remarkable versatility. The humour is
keen, and nowhere overstrained. "Number 1287", a short story by Gracia
Isola Yarbrough, exhibits many of the flaws of immature work, yet
contains graphic touches that promise well for the author. The lack of
unity in plot and development detracts somewhat from the general effect,
while the unusual lapses of time and artificial working up of the later
situations are also antagonistic to technical polish. Triteness is
present, but that is to be expected in all amateur fiction. "A Drama of
Business", by Edgar Ralph Cheyney, is a terse bit of prose which might
well serve as an editorial in a liberal literary magazine. "The Schools
of Yesterday and Today", a sketch by Selma Guilford, presents in
pleasing fashion an interesting and optimistic contrast. In "Mother",
George M. Whiteside treats a noble theme in rather skilful fashion,
though the rhyming of "=breezes=" and "=trees is=" can hardly be deemed
suitable in a serious poem. "When the Sea Calls", a poem by Winifred
Virginia Jordan, is possibly the most striking feature of the magazine.
Mrs. Jordan's style in dealing with the wilder aspects of Nature has a
grim potency all its own, and we can endorse without qualification the
judgment of Mr. Moe when he calls this poem "positively magnificent in
dynamic effect". To Mrs. Jordan is granted a natural poetic genius which
few other amateurs can hope to parallel. Not many of our literary
artists can so aptly fit words to weird or unusual passages, or so
happily command all the advantages of alliteration and onomatopoeia. We
believe that Mrs. Jordan's amateur eminence will eventually ripen into
professional recognition. "Preachers in Politics", by Rev. James Thomas
Self, is a long, thoughtful, and extremely well phrased essay against
the descent of the ministry to the uncertain affairs of practical
legislation. Dr. Self has a just idea of the dignity of the cloth; an
idea which some clergymen of less conservative habits would do well to
acquire. Very painful is the sight of the slang-mouthing "evangelist"
who deserts his pulpit for the stump or the circus-tent. "Peace,
Germany!", a poem by Maude Kingsbury Barton, constitutes an appeal to
the present outlaw among nations. We feel, however, that it is only from
London that Germany will eventually be convinced of the futility of her
pseudo-Napoleonic enterprise. And when peace does come to Germany, it
will be British-made peace! The structure of Mrs. Barton's poem is
regular, and many of the images are very well selected. The worst
misprints are those in the sixth stanza, where "=in=" is omitted before
the word "=pomp=", and in the seventh stanza where "=come=" is printed
as "=came=". In the biographical sketch entitled "Two Lives", Helen
Hamilton draws a powerful moral from the contrasting but contemporaneous
careers of Florence Nightingale and the ex-Empress Eugenie. "Class-Room
Spirits I Have Known", an essay by Bessie Estelle Harvey, displays a
sound comprehension of pedagogical principles. Two more poems by Mrs.
Jordan conclude the issue. "The Time of Peach Tree Bloom" is the fourth
of the "Songs from Walpi", three of which appeared in THE UNITED
AMATEUR. "In a Garden" is a gem of delightful delicacy and ethereal
elegance. It is indeed not without just cause that the author has, from
the very first, held the distinction of being the most frequent poetical
contributor in all amateur journalism.

       *       *       *       *       *

=The Cleveland Sun= for June is the first number of an amateur newspaper
edited by Anthony F. Moitoret, Edwin D. Harkins, and William J. Dowdell;
and remarkable for an excellent heading, drawn by a staff artist of the
=Cleveland Leader=. The present issue is printed in close imitation of
the modern professional daily, and displays some interesting examples of
"newspaper English". Mr. Moitoret is an old-time United man, now
reentering the sphere of activity, and he is to be commended warmly both
for his generous attitude toward the new members, and for his really
magnanimous offer of aid to those desirous of issuing individual papers.
His editorial hostility toward the Campbell amendment is, we believe,
mistaken; yet is none the less founded on a praiseworthy desire to serve
what he deems the best interests of the Association. Were Mr. Moitoret
more in touch with the rising ideals of the newer United, he would
realize the essential childishness of our "official business" as
contrasted with the substantial solidity of our developing literature.
Possibly the plan of Mr. Campbell, as experimentally tried during the
present year, will alter Mr. Moitoret's present opinion. Taken
altogether, we are not sure whether the =Sun= will prove beneficial or
harmful to the United. We most assuredly need some sort of stimulus to
activity, yet the comparatively crude atmosphere of newspaperdom is
anything but inspiring in a literary society. We cannot descend from the
ideals of Homer to those of Hearst without a distinct loss of quality,
for which no possible gain in mere enthusiasm can compensate. Headlines
such as "Columbus Bunch Boosting Paul" or "Hep Still Shows Pep", are
positive affronts to the dignity of amateur journalism. There is room
for an alert and informing news sheet in the United, yet we feel certain
that the =Sun= must become a far more sedate and scholarly publication
before it can adequately supply the need. At present, its garish rays
dazzle and blind more than they illuminate; in a perusal of its pages we
experience more of =sunstroke= than of =sunshine=. Of "The Best Sport
Page In Amateurdom" we find it difficult to speak or write. Not since
perusing the delectable lines of "Tom Crib's Memorial to Congress", by
jovial old "Anacreon Moore", have we beheld such an invasion of
prize-fight philosophy and race-track rhetoric. We learn with interest
that a former United member named "Handsome Harry" has now graduated
from literature to =left field=, and has, through sheer genius, risen
from the lowly level of the ambitious author, to the exalted eminence of
the =classy slugger=. Too proud to =push the pen=, he now =swats the
pill=. Of such doth the dizzy quality of sempiternal Fame consist!
Speaking without levity, we cannot but censure Mr. Dowdell's
introduction of the ringside or ball-field spirit into an Association
purporting to promote culture and lettered skill. Our members can
scarcely be expected to place the Stygian-hued John Arthur Johnson,
Esq., on a pedestal beside his well-known namesake Samuel; or calmly to
compare the stinging wit of a Sidney Smith with the stinging fist-cuffs
of a "Gunboat" Smith. In a word, what is suited to the street-corner is
not always suited to the library, and the taste of the United is as yet
but imperfectly attuned to the lyrical liltings of the pool-room Muse.
It is both hard and unwise to take the "Best Sport Page" seriously. As a
copy of "yellow" models it is a work of artistic verisimilitude; indeed,
were Mr. Dowdell a somewhat older man, we might justly suspect a
satirical intention on his part.

We trust that =The Cleveland Sun= may shine on without cloud or setting,
though we must needs hope that the United's atmosphere of academic
refinement will temper somewhat the scorching glare with which the
bright orb has risen.

       *       *       *       *       *

=The Conservative= for April opens with Andrew Francis Lockhart's
melodious and attractive poem entitled "Benediction". As a whole, this
is possibly the best piece of verse which Mr. Lockhart has yet written;
the sentiment is apt, if not entirely novel, whilst the technical
construction is well-nigh faultless. Such expressions as "pearl-scarr'd"
serve to exhibit the active and original quality of Mr. Lockhart's
genius. "Another Endless Day", by Rheinhart Kleiner, is a beautiful and
harmonious poetical protest against monotony. Much to be regretted is
the misprint in line 3 of the third stanza, where the text should read:

    "=A= love to thrill with new delight".

"April", by Winifred Virginia Jordan, is a seasonable and extremely
tuneful poem whose imagery is of that dainty, sprightly sort which only
Mrs. Jordan can create. "In Morven's Mead", also by Mrs. Jordan,
contains an elusive and haunting suggestion of the unreal, in the
author's characteristic style. "The Night Wind Bared My Heart" completes
a highly meritorious trilogy. In justice to the author, it should be
stated that the last of these three poems is, as here presented, merely
a rough draft. Through our own reprehensible editorial oversight, the
printer received this unpolished copy instead of the finished poem. The
following emendations should be observed:

    Stanza I, line 4, to read: "Awak'd my anguish'd sighs".

    Stanza II, line 3, to read: "But Oh, from grief =were= prest".

"The Best Wine", by William de Ryee, is an earnestly introspective poem,
well cast in iambic pentameter quatrains. "Ye Ballade of Patrick von
Flynn" is a comic delineation of the cheap pseudo-Irish, England-hating
agitators who have been so offensively noisy on this side of the
Atlantic ever since the European war began, and particularly since the
late riots in Dublin. This class, which so sadly misrepresents the loyal
Irish people, deserves but little patience from Americans. Its members
stutter childishly about "breaches of neutrality" every time a real
American dares speak a word in favour of the Mother Country; yet they
constantly violate neutrality themselves in their clumsy attempts to use
the United States as a catspaw against England. The actual German
propagandists have the excuse of patriotism for their race and
Vaterland, but these Hibernian hybrids, neither good Irishmen nor good
Americans, have no excuse whatever when they try to subvert the
functions of the country which is giving them protection and livelihood.

       *       *       *       *       *

=The Conservative= for July pays a deserved tribute to one of the most
lucid and acute of our amateur essayists, by devoting the entire issue
to his work. Henry Clapham McGavack, in "The American Proletariat versus
England", exposes with admirable fearlessness the silly Anglophobic
notions which a mistaken conception of the Revolution, and an ignorant
Irish population, have diffused among our lower classes. It is seldom
that an author ventures to speak so frankly on this subject, for the
servile tendency of the times impels most writers and publishers to play
the demagogue by essaying to feed the Irish masses with the anti-English
swill they desire; but Mr. McGavack wields an independent pen, and
records the truth without fear of the =mobile vulgus= and its shallow
views. In power, directness, urbanity, and impartiality, Mr. McGavack
cannot be excelled. He marshals his arguments without passion, bias, or
circumlocution; piling proof upon proof until none but the most stubborn
England-hater can fail to blush at the equal injustice and stupidity of
those who malign that mighty empire to whose earth-wide circle of
civilisation we all belong.

       *       *       *       *       *

=The Coyote= for April is a Special English Number, dedicated to our
soldier-member, George William Stokes of Newcastle-on-Tyne. The opening
poem "To England", well exhibits the versatility of Mrs. Winifred V.
Jordan, who here appears as a national panegyrist of commendable dignity
and unexceptionable taste. The word at the beginning of the fourth line
should read "=Is=" instead of "=To=". The short yet stirring metre is
particularly well selected. "Active English Amateurs I Have Met", by
Ernest A. Dench, is a rather good prose piece, though not without marks
of careless composition. "The Vultur", by Henry J. Winterbone of the
B. A. P. A., is a remarkably good story whose development and conclusion
would do credit to a professional pen. We hope Mr. Winterbone may join
the United, thereby giving American readers a more ample opportunity to
enjoy his work. Editor William T. Harrington, whose prose is so rapidly
acquiring polish and fluency, contributes two brief but able essays:
"History Repeats" and "How Great Britain Keeps Her Empire". In "History
Repeats", certain parts of the second sentence might well be amended a
trifle in structure, to read thus: "it must be remembered =that= the
first half was a series of victories for the South, and =that= only
after the Battle of Gettysburg did the strength of the North begin to
assert itself". This number of =The Coyote= is an exceedingly timely and
tasteful tribute to our Mother Country, appearing at an hour when the
air of America reeks with the illiterate anti-British trash of the "Sinn
Fein" simpletons and Prussian propagandists.

       *       *       *       *       *

=Invictus= for July is the second number of Mr. Paul J. Campbell's
personal organ, and represents the strictly individual magazine in its
most tasteful and elaborate form. Unimpeachably artistic in appearance,
its contents justify the exterior; the whole constituting a publication
of the first rank, wherein are joined the virtues both of the old and of
the new schools of amateur journalism. Since Mr. Campbell is
preeminently an essayist, it is to his dissertations on "The Pursuit of
Happiness" and "The Age of Accuracy" which we turn most eagerly; and
which in no way disappoint our high expectations. The first of these
essays is a dispassionate survey of mankind in its futile but frantic
scramble after that elusive but unreal sunbeam called "happiness". The
author views the grimly amusing procession of human life with the
genuine objective of an impartial spectator, and with commendable
freedom from the hypocritical colouring of those who permit commonplace
emotions and tenuous idealizings to obscure the less roseate but more
substantial vision of their intellects. "The Age of Accuracy" presents
an inspiring panorama of the evolution of Intellect, and of its
increasing domination over the more elemental faculties of instinct and
emotion. At the same time, much material for reflection is furnished,
since it is obvious that the advance is necessarily confined to a
comparatively small and select part of humanity. Instinct and emotion
are still forces of tremendous magnitude, against which Reason wages an
upward struggle of incredible bravery. Only the strong can escape the
clutch of the primitive, wherefore there can be no successful social
order which does not conform in its essentials to the blind impulses of
the natural man or man-ape. We are in danger of overestimating the
ascendancy and stability of Reason, for it is in reality the most
fragile and rudimentary element in our mortal fabric. A heavy blow on
certain parts of the skull, or a bullet in certain parts of the brain,
can destroy in an instant all the accumulated intellect which aeons of
heredity have bestowed, depressing the victim from the zenith of culture
and refinement to a condition separated only by colour and contour from
that of the negro or the gorilla; yet not all the edicts of the
lawgiver, devices of the educator, measures of the reformer, or skill of
the surgeon, can extirpate the ingrained instincts and seated
superstitions of the average human animal.

The poetry of Mr. Campbell is represented in =Invictus= by three
specimens, whose merit speaks well for the author's progress in the art.
"The Sunshine Girl" is an amatory panegyric of no small skill and
polish, though not strikingly novel in sentiment or expression. "German
Kultur" is a scathing and virile indictment of the present enemies of
humanity. The versification is bold, and in places rugged, whilst the
imagery is appropriately grim and sardonic. Points which we might
criticise are the repeated use of "=civilization=" as a word of only
four syllables, and the archaic pronunciation of "=drown-ed=" as a
dissyllable. This latter usage would be objectionable in verse of
stately or conservative cast, but here grates upon the ear as an
anachronism. The trenchant wit of the piece is well sustained, and
brought out with particular force in the second and fourth stanzas. "The
Major Strain" is without doubt the foremost verse of the issue. This is
real poetry. The sustained rhyming, whereby each stanza contains only
one rhyming sound, is pleasing and unusual. Mr. Campbell's comment on
"Amateur Affairs" really deserves to be classed as an essay, for its
thoughtful conclusions and intelligent analyses of human nature
certainly draw it within the pale of true literature. The broad
comprehension and continued love of amateur journalism here exhibited,
are potent justifications of the author's practically unanimous election
to the Presidency of the United. =Invictus= is one of the very foremost
journals of the amateur world, and the only possible objection which can
be raised against it, is its infrequency of appearance. It is the voice
of a virile and vibrant personality who unites vigour of thought with
urbanity of expression.

       *       *       *       *       *

=The Scot= for May marks the advent of this highly entertaining and well
conducted magazine to the United, and extends the northern frontier of
amateur journalism to Bonnie Dundee, in Auld Scotland, the Land of
Mountain and Flood. "Hidden Beauty", a poem in blank verse by R. M.
Ingersley, opens the issue with a combination of lofty conceptions,
vivid imagery, and regular structure. "England's Glory", by Clyde Dane,
is a stirring tale of that fearless and self-sacrificing honour which
has given to the Anglo-Saxon the supremacy of the world. It would be in
bad taste to cavil at slight technical imperfections or instances of
triteness when considering so earnest and glowing a delineation of the
British character; the noblest human type ever moulded by the Creator.
"Oh Rose, Red Rose!" is a tuneful little lyric by Winifred V. Jordan,
whose work is never too brief to be pleasing, or too long to be
absorbing. "Clemency versus Frightfulness", by William T. Harrington, is
a thoughtful and lucid exposition of the British governmental ideal of
lenient justice; an ideal whose practical success has vividly
demonstrated its thorough soundness. "At Last", by Muriel Wilson, is a
blank verse poem of much merit. "Do You Remember?", by the late Lieut.
Roy Arthur Thackara, R. N., is a delicate sketch possessing the
additional interest of coming from the pen of one who has now given his
life for King and Country; the author having gone down with H. M. S.
=India=. "A Battle with the Sea", a sketch by Midshipman Ernest L.
McKeag, exhibits descriptive power of no common order, yet might well
have a less abrupt conclusion. "To Some One", by Margaret Trafford, is a
poem in dactylic measure, dedicated to the women of Britain. The
sentiment is noble, and the encomium well bestowed, though the metre
could be improved in polish. "Gum", by Henry J. Winterbone, is a
delightfully humorous sketch. It is evident that those who depreciate
British humour must have taken pains to avoid its perusal, since it has
a quietly pungent quality seldom found save among Anglo-Saxons.
Personally, we believe that the summit of clumsy pseudo-jocoseness is
attained by the average "comic" supplement of the Hearst Sunday papers.
These, and not the British press, present the pathetic spectacle of
utter inanity and repulsive grotesqueness without the faintest redeeming
touch of genuine comedy, legitimate satire, or refined humour. "Life's
Voyage", by Matthew Hilson, is a poem of great attractiveness, though of
scarcely impeccable construction. Concerning the expression "tempests
wild do roar", we must reiterate the advice of Mr. Pope, who condemned
the expletive "do", "doth", or "did" as a "feeble aid". Such usage has,
in fact, been in bad taste ever since the reign of Queen Anne; Dryden
being the last bard in whom we need not censure the practice. Mr.
McColl's editorials are brief but informing. He may well be
congratulated on his work as a publisher, and he certainly deserves as
hearty a welcome as the United can give.

       *       *       *       *       *

=The Scot= for June is a "British Old-Timers' Number", confined wholly
to the work of the senior amateur journalists of the Mother Country.
Edward F. Herdman, to whom this number is dedicated, opens the issue
with a religious poem entitled "Life", which compares well with the bulk
of current religious verse. Mr. Herdman also contributes one of several
prose essays on amateur journalism, in which the various authors view
our field of endeavor from similar angles. "A Song of a Sailor", by
R. D. Roosemale-Cocq, exhibits buoyant animation, and considerable ease
in the handling of a rollicking measure. The internal rhymes are for the
most part well introduced, though greater uniformity might have been
used in their distribution. The first two lines have none. In the last
stanza there are two lines whose metre seems deficient, but being
conscious of the uncertainties of the secretarial and typographical
arts, we suspend judgment on the author. "A Song of Cheer", by Alfred H.
Pearce, is an optimistic ode of real merit. The last line furnishes a
particularly pleasing example of sprightly wit. Mr. Gavin T. McColl is
sensible and perspicuous in all his editorial utterances. His work in
issuing one of the only two regular monthly magazines in amateurdom has
already brought him to prominence, though his connexion with the press
associations is still new.

       *       *       *       *       *

THE UNITED AMATEUR for June is given over largely to critical and
official matter, though two pieces of verse serve to vary the monotony.
"Content", from our own pen, is an answer to Mr. Rheinhart Kleiner's
delightful poem in the April =Conservative=, entitled "Another Endless
Day". The lines are notable chiefly on account of some fearful and
wonderful typographical errors. In the fourth line "=sublime=" should
read "=sublimer=". In the eighth line there should be no apostrophe in
the word "=stars=". In the second column, eleventh line from the end,
there should be no apostrophe in the word "=fathers=", and finally, in
the ninth line from the end, "=hollow'd=" should read "=hallow'd=". "The
Swing in the Great Oak Tree", by Mrs. Agnes Richmond Arnold, is a
reminiscent poem whose measure is as swinging as its subject, and whose
atmosphere is pleasantly rural. There are flaws in the metre, and
irregularities in the rhyming arrangement, but the spirit of the whole
rises blithesomely above such slight technical matters. Editor
Schilling's column is to be praised for its dignified style, and
endorsed for its sound opinions.

       *       *       *       *       *

=The Woodbee= for July is an attractive and important contribution to
the history of amateur journalism; since it is entirely devoted to the
biographies of the gifted Columbus amateurs, and to the annals of their
brilliant local organization. The Woodbees undoubtedly form the most
active and representative adult club in the United; to which only the
Appleton Club, representing the juvenile Muse, may justly be compared.
The Woodbees are typical, in a sense, of all that is best in the entire
association. They are pursuing courses of serious literary study,
producing a regularly issued magazine of unfailing merit and good taste,
working enthusiastically for the welfare and expansion of the United,
and leading or following every worthy or progressive movement in amateur
politics. They reflect credit upon themselves, their society, the
Association, and amateur journalism as a whole. The delightful
biographical article which occupies the major portion of the current
=Woodbee= is unsigned; but deserves particular praise, whoever the
author may be. The various characters are well displayed, and their
pleasing qualities and manifold activities well exhibited.

Mr. Fritter's editorials are as usual timely, lucid, and sensible. His
advocacy of the Campbell Amendment is to be applauded; and will, we
trust, be justified by the year's trial which that measure is now
undergoing. The present issue marks the conclusion of Mr. Fritter's term
as editor. He has given the amateur public a creditable volume, and is
entitled to the gratitude of every member of our Association. A final
word of praise is due the excellent group photograph of the Woodbees
which forms the frontispiece of the magazine. Added to the biographical
matter, it completes a thoroughly commendable introduction to a
thoroughly commendable body of literary workers.

                                                  H. P. LOVECRAFT,

                     THE UNITED AMATEUR




High up, crowning the grassy summit of a swelling mound whose sides are
wooded near the base with the gnarled trees of the primeval forest,
stands the old chateau of my ancestors. For centuries its lofty
battlements have frowned down upon the wild and rugged countryside
about, serving as a home and stronghold for the proud house whose
honoured line is older even than the moss-grown castle walls. These
ancient turrets, stained by the storms of generations and crumbling
under the slow yet mighty pressure of time, formed in the ages of
feudalism one of the most dreaded and formidable fortresses in all
France. From its machicolated parapets and mounted battlements Barons,
Counts, and even Kings had been defied, yet never had its spacious halls
resounded to the footstep of the invader.

But since those glorious years all is changed. A poverty but little
above the level of dire want, together with a pride of name that forbids
its alleviation by the pursuits of commercial life, have prevented the
scions of our line from maintaining their estates in pristine splendour;
and the falling stones of the walls, the overgrown vegetation in the
parks, the dry and dusty moat, the ill-paved courtyards, and toppling
towers without, as well as the sagging floors, the worm-eaten wainscots,
and the faded tapestries within, all tell a gloomy tale of fallen
grandeur. As the ages passed, first one, then another of the four great
turrets were left to ruin, until at last but a single tower housed the
sadly reduced descendants of the once mighty lords of the estate.

It was in one of the vast and gloomy chambers of this remaining tower
that I, Antoine, last of the unhappy and accursed Comtes de C----, first
saw the light of day, ninety long years ago. Within these walls, and
amongst the dark and shadowy forests, the wild ravines and grottoes of
the hillside below, were spent the first years of my troubled life. My
parents I never knew. My father had been killed at the age of
thirty-two, a month before I was born, by the fall of a stone somehow
dislodged from one of the deserted parapets of the castle, and my mother
having died at my birth, my care and education devolved solely upon one
remaining servitor, an old and trusted man of considerable intelligence,
whose name I remember as Pierre. I was an only child, and the lack of
companionship which this fact entailed upon me was augmented by the
strange care exercised by my aged guardian in excluding me from the
society of the peasant children whose abodes were scattered here and
there upon the plains that surround the base of the hill. At the time,
Pierre said that this restriction was imposed upon me because my noble
birth placed me above association with such plebeian company. Now I know
that its real object was to keep from my ears the idle tales of the
dread curse upon our line, that were nightly told and magnified by the
simple tenantry as they conversed in hushed accents in the glow of their
cottage hearths.

Thus isolated, and thrown upon my own resources, I spent the hours of my
childhood in poring over the ancient tomes that filled the
shadow-haunted library of the chateau, and in roaming without aim or
purpose through the perpetual dusk of the spectral wood that clothes the
sides of the hill near its foot. It was perhaps an effect of such
surroundings that my mind early acquired a shade of melancholy. Those
studies and pursuits which partake of the dark and occult in nature most
strongly claimed my attention.

Of my own race I was permitted to learn singularly little, yet what
small knowledge of it I was able to gain, seemed to depress me much.
Perhaps it was at first only the manifest reluctance of my old preceptor
to discuss with me my paternal ancestry that gave rise to the terror
which I ever felt at the mention of my great house, yet as I grew out of
childhood, I was able to piece together disconnected fragments of
discourse, let slip from the unwilling tongue which had begun to falter
in approaching senility, that had a sort of relation to a certain
circumstance which I had always deemed strange, but which now became
dimly terrible. The circumstance to which I allude is the early age at
which all the Comtes of my line had met their end. Whilst I had hitherto
considered this but a natural attribute of a family of short-lived men,
I afterward pondered long upon these premature deaths, and began to
connect them with the wanderings of the old man, who often spoke of a
curse which for centuries had prevented the lives of the holders of my
title from much exceeding the span of thirty-two years. Upon my
twenty-first birthday, the aged Pierre gave to me a family document
which he said had for many generations been handed down from father to
son, and continued by each possessor. Its contents were of the most
startling nature, and its perusal confirmed the gravest of my
apprehensions. At this time, my belief in the supernatural was firm and
deep-seated, else I should have dismissed with scorn the incredible
narrative unfolded before my eyes.

The paper carried me back to the days of the thirteenth century, when
the old castle in which I sat had been a feared and impregnable
fortress. It told of a certain ancient man who had once dwelt on our
estates, a person of no small accomplishments, though little above the
rank of peasant; by name, Michel, usually designated by the surname of
Mauvais, the Evil, on account of his sinister reputation. He had studied
beyond the custom of his kind, seeking such things as the Philosopher's
Stone, or the Elixir of Eternal Life, and was reputed wise in the
terrible secrets of Black Magic and Alchemy. Michel Mauvais had one son,
named Charles, a youth as proficient as himself in the hidden arts, and
who had therefore been called Le Sorcier, or the Wizard. This pair,
shunned by all honest folk, were suspected of the most hideous
practices. Old Michel was said to have burnt his wife alive as a
sacrifice to the Devil, and the unaccountable disappearances of many
small peasant children were laid at the dreaded door of these two. Yet
through the dark natures of the father and the son ran one redeeming ray
of humanity; the evil old man loved his offspring with fierce intensity,
whilst the youth had for his parent a more than filial affection.

One night the castle on the hill was thrown into the wildest confusion
by the vanishment of young Godfrey, son to Henri, the Comte. A searching
party, headed by the frantic father, invaded the cottage of the
sorcerers and there came upon old Michel Mauvais, busy over a huge and
violently boiling cauldron. Without certain cause, in the ungoverned
madness of fury and despair, the Comte laid hands on the aged wizard,
and ere he released his murderous hold his victim was no more. Meanwhile
joyful servants were proclaiming aloud the finding of young Godfrey in a
distant and unused chamber of the great edifice, telling too late that
poor Michel had been killed in vain. As the Comte and his associates
turned away from the lowly abode of the alchemists, the form of Charles
Le Sorcier appeared through the trees. The excited chatter of the
menials standing about told him what had occurred, yet he seemed at
first unmoved at his father's fate. Then, slowly advancing to meet the
Comte, he pronounced in dull yet terrible accents the curse that ever
afterward haunted the house of C----.

    "May ne'er a noble of thy murd'rous line
    Survive to reach a greater age than thine!"

spake he, when, suddenly leaping backwards into the black wood, he drew
from his tunic a phial of colourless liquid which he threw in the face
of his father's slayer as he disappeared behind the inky curtain of the
night. The Comte died without utterance, and was buried the next day,
but little more than two and thirty years from the hour of his birth. No
trace of the assassin could be found, though relentless bands of
peasants scoured the neighboring woods and the meadow-land around the

Thus time and the want of a reminder dulled the memory of the curse in
the minds of the late Comte's family, so that when Godfrey, innocent
cause of the whole tragedy and now bearing the title, was killed by an
arrow whilst hunting, at the age of thirty-two, there were no thoughts
save those of grief at his demise. But when, years afterward, the next
young Comte, Robert by name, was found dead in a nearby field from no
apparent cause, the peasants told in whispers that their seigneur had
but lately passed his thirty-second birthday when surprised by early
death. Louis, son to Robert, was found drowned in the moat at the same
fateful age, and thus down through the centuries ran the ominous
chronicle; Henris, Roberts, Antoines, and Armands snatched from happy
and virtuous lives when a little below the age of their unfortunate
ancestor at his murder.

That I had left at most but eleven years of further existence was made
certain to me by the words which I read. My life, previously held at
small value, now became dearer to me each day, as I delved deeper and
deeper into the mysteries of the hidden world of black magic. Isolated
as I was, modern science had produced no impression upon me, and I
laboured as in the Middle Ages, as wrapt as had been old Michel and
young Charles themselves in the acquisition of demonological and
alchemical learning. Yet read as I might, in no manner could I account
for the strange curse upon my line. In unusually rational moments, I
would even go so far as to seek a natural explanation, attributing the
early deaths of my ancestors to the sinister Charles Le Sorcier and his
heirs; yet having found upon careful inquiry that there were no known
descendants of the alchemist, I would fall back to my occult studies,
and once more endeavour to find a spell that would release my house from
its terrible burden. Upon one thing I was absolutely resolved. I should
never wed, for since no other branches of my family were in existence, I
might thus end the curse with myself.

As I drew near the age of thirty, old Pierre was called to the land
beyond. Alone I buried him beneath the stones of the courtyard about
which he had loved to wander in life. Thus was I left to ponder on
myself as the only human creature within the great fortress, and in my
utter solitude my mind began to cease its vain protest against the
impending doom, to become almost reconciled to the fate which so many of
my ancestors had met. Much of my time was now occupied in the
exploration of the ruined and abandoned halls and towers of the old
chateau, which in youth fear had caused me to shun, and some of which
old Pierre had once told me had not been trodden by human foot for over
four centuries. Strange and awsome were many of the objects I
encountered. Furniture, covered by the dust of ages and crumbling with
the rot of long dampness met my eyes. Cobwebs in a profusion never
before seen by me were spun everywhere, and huge bats flapped their bony
and uncanny wings on all sides of the otherwise untenanted gloom.

Of my exact age, even down to days and hours, I kept a most careful
record, for each movement of the pendulum of the massive clock in the
library tolled off so much more of my doomed existence. At length I
approached that time which I had so long viewed with apprehension. Since
most of my ancestors had been seized some little while before they
reached the exact age of the Comte Henri at his end, I was every moment
on the watch for the coming of the unknown death. In what strange form
the curse should overtake me, I knew not; but I was resolved at least
that it should not find me a cowardly or a passive victim. With new
vigour I applied myself to my examination of the old chateau and its

It was upon one of the longest of all my excursions of discovery in the
deserted portion of the castle, less than a week before that fatal hour
which I felt must mark the utmost limit of my stay on earth, beyond
which I could have not even the slightest hope of continuing to draw
breath, that I came upon the culminating event of my whole life. I had
spent the better part of the morning in climbing up and down half ruined
staircases in one of the most dilapidated of the ancient turrets. As the
afternoon progressed, I sought the lower levels, descending into what
appeared to be either a mediaeval place of confinement, or a more
recently excavated storehouse for gunpowder. As I slowly traversed the
nitre-encrusted passageway at the foot of the last staircase, the paving
became very damp, and soon I saw by the light of my flickering torch
that a blank, water-stained wall impeded my journey. Turning to retrace
my steps, my eye fell upon a small trap-door with a ring, which lay
directly beneath my feet. Pausing, I succeeded with difficulty in
raising it, whereupon there was revealed a black aperture, exhaling
noxious fumes which caused my torch to sputter, and disclosing in the
unsteady glare the top of a flight of stone steps. As soon as the torch,
which I lowered into the repellent depths, burned freely and steadily, I
commenced my descent. The steps were many, and led to a narrow
stone-flagged passage which I knew must be far underground. This passage
proved of great length, and terminated in a massive oaken door,
dripping with the moisture of the place, and stoutly resisting all my
attempts to open it. Ceasing after a time my efforts in this direction,
I had proceeded back some distance toward the steps, when there suddenly
fell to my experience one of the most profound and maddening shocks
capable of reception by the human mind. Without warning, =I heard the
heavy door behind me creak slowly open upon its rusted hinges=. My
immediate sensations are incapable of analysis. To be confronted in a
place as thoroughly deserted as I had deemed the old castle with
evidence of the presence of man or spirit, produced in my brain a horror
of the most acute description. When at last I turned and faced the seat
of the sound, my eyes must have started from their orbits at the sight
that they beheld. There in the ancient Gothic doorway stood a human
figure. It was that of a man clad in a skull-cap and long mediaeval
tunic of dark colour. His long hair and flowing beard were of a terrible
and intense black hue, and of incredible profusion. His forehead, high
beyond the usual dimensions; his cheeks, deep sunken and heavily lined
with wrinkles; and his hands, long, claw-like and gnarled, were of such
a deathly, marble-like whiteness as I have never elsewhere seen in man.
His figure, lean to the proportions of a skeleton, was strangely bent
and almost lost within the voluminous folds of his peculiar garment. But
strangest of all were his eyes; twin caves of abysmal blackness;
profound in expression of understanding, yet inhuman in degree of
wickedness. These were now fixed upon me, piercing my soul with their
hatred, and rooting me to the spot whereon I stood. At last the figure
spoke in a rumbling voice that chilled me through with its dull
hollowness and latent malevolence. The language in which the discourse
was clothed was that debased form of Latin in use amongst the more
learned men of the Middle Ages, and made familiar to me by my prolonged
researches into the works of the old alchemists and demonologists. The
apparition spoke of the curse which had hovered over my house, told me
of my coming end, dwelt on the wrong perpetrated by my ancestor against
old Michel Mauvais, and gloated over the revenge of Charles Le Sorcier.
He told me how the young Charles had escaped into the night, returning
in after years to kill Godfrey the heir with an arrow just as he
approached the age which had been his father's at his assassination; how
he had secretly returned to the estate and established himself, unknown,
in the even then deserted subterranean chamber whose doorway now framed
the hideous narrator; how he had seized Robert, son of Godfrey, in a
field, forced poison down his throat and left him to die at the age of
thirty-two, thus maintaining the foul provisions of his vengeful curse.
At this point I was left to imagine the solution of the greatest mystery
of all, how the curse had been fulfilled since that time when Charles Le
Sorcier must in the course of nature have died, for the man digressed
into an account of the deep alchemical studies of the two wizards,
father and son, speaking most particularly of the researches of Charles
Le Sorcier concerning the elixir which should grant to him who partook
of it eternal life and youth.

His enthusiasm had seemed for the moment to remove from his terrible
eyes the hatred that had at first so haunted them, but suddenly the
fiendish glare returned, and with a shocking sound like the hissing of a
serpent, the stranger raised a glass phial with the evident intent of
ending my life as had Charles Le Sorcier, six hundred years before,
ended that of my ancestor. Prompted by some preserving instinct of
self-defense, I broke through the spell that had hitherto held me
immovable, and flung my now dying torch at the creature who menaced my
existence. I heard the phial break harmlessly against the stones of the
passage as the tunic of the strange man caught fire and lit the horrid
scene with a ghastly radiance. The shriek of fright and impotent malice
emitted by the would-be assassin proved too much for my already shaken
nerves, and I fell prone upon the slimy floor in a total faint.

When at last my senses returned, all was frightfully dark, and my mind
remembering what had occurred, shrank from the idea of beholding more;
yet curiosity overmastered all. Who, I asked myself, was this man of
evil, and how came he within the castle walls? Why should he seek to
avenge the death of poor Michel Mauvais, and how had the curse been
carried on through all the long centuries since the time of Charles Le
Sorcier? The dread of years was lifted off my shoulders, for I knew that
he whom I had felled was the source of all my danger from the curse; and
now that I was free, I burned with the desire to learn more of the
sinister thing which had haunted my line for centuries, and made of my
own youth one long-continued nightmare. Determined upon further
exploration, I felt in my pockets for flint and steel, and lit the
unused torch which I had with me. First of all, the new light revealed
the distorted and blackened form of the mysterious stranger. The hideous
eyes were now closed. Disliking the sight, I turned away and entered the
chamber beyond the Gothic door. Here I found what seemed much like an
alchemist's laboratory. In one corner was an immense pile of a shining
yellow metal that sparkled gorgeously in the light of the torch. It may
have been gold, but I did not pause to examine it, for I was strangely
affected by that which I had undergone. At the farther end of the
apartment was an opening leading out into one of the many wild ravines
of the dark hillside forest. Filled with wonder, yet now realizing how
the man had obtained access to the chateau, I proceeded to return. I had
intended to pass by the remains of the stranger with averted face, but
as I approached the body, I seemed to hear emanating from it a faint
sound, as though life were not yet wholly extinct. Aghast, I turned to
examine the charred and shrivelled figure on the floor.

Then all at once the horrible eyes, blacker even than the seared face in
which they were set, opened wide with an expression which I was unable
to interpret. The cracked lips tried to frame words which I could not
well understand. Once I caught the name of Charles Le Sorcier, and again
I fancied that the words "years" and "curse" issued from the twisted
mouth. Still I was at a loss to gather the purport of his disconnected
speech. At my evident ignorance of his meaning, the pitchy eyes once
more flashed malevolently at me, until, helpless as I saw my opponent to
be, I trembled as I watched him.

Suddenly the wretch, animated with his last burst of strength, raised
his hideous head from the damp and sunken pavement. Then, as I remained,
paralyzed with fear, he found his voice and in his dying breath screamed
forth those words which have ever afterward haunted my days and my
nights. "Fool," he shrieked, "can you not guess my secret? Have you no
brain whereby you may recognize the will which has through six long
centuries fulfilled the dreadful curse upon your house? Have I not told
you of the great elixir of eternal life? Know you not how the secret of
Alchemy was solved? I tell you, it is I! I! =I! that have lived for six
hundred years to maintain my revenge=, FOR I AM CHARLES LE SORCIER!"

                                                      H. P. LOVECRAFT.



=The Conservative= for October opens with Miss Olive G. Owen's tuneful
lines on "The Mocking Bird." Of the quality of Miss Owen's poetry it is
scarce necessary to speak; be it sufficient to say that the present
piece ranks among her best. In the intense fervour of the sentiment, and
the felicitous choice of the imagery, the touch of the born poet is
alike shown. Through an almost inexcusable editorial mistake of our own,
the first word of this poem is erroneously rendered. Line 1 should read:

    "=Where= Southern moonlight softly falls."

"Old England and the Hyphen" is an attempt of the present critic to
demonstrate why relations between the United States and Mother England
must necessarily be closer than those between the States and any of the
really foreign powers. So patent and so inevitable is the essential
unity of the Anglo-Saxon world that such an essay as this ought really
to be superfluous; but its practical justification is found in the silly
clamour of those Anglophobes who are unfortunately permitted to reside
within our borders. "Insomnia," by Winifred Virginia Jordan, is a
remarkable piece of verse whose dark turns of fancy are almost worthy of
a Poe. The grotesque tropes, the cleverly distorted images, the bizarre
atmosphere, and ingeniously sinister repetitions all unite to produce
one of the season's most notable poems. Each of the stanzas is vibrant
with the hideous, racking turmoil of the insomnious mind. "Prussianism,"
by William Thomas Harrington, is a concise and lucid essay on a timely
subject, reviewing ably the cause and responsibility of the present war.
It is especially valuable at this season of incoherent peace
discussion, for it explodes very effectively that vague, brainless
"neutrality" which prompts certain pro-German pacifists to cry for peace
before the normal and final settlement of Europe's troubles shall have
been attained by the permanent annihilation of the Prussian military
machine. "Twilight," by Chester Pierce Munroe, is a beautiful bit of
poetic fancy and stately phraseology. Mr. Munroe, a Rhode Islander
transplanted to the mountains of North Carolina, is acquiring all the
grace and delicacy of the native Southern bard, while retaining that
happy conservatism of expression which distinguishes his work from that
of most contemporary poets. Callously modern indeed must be he who would
wish Mr. Munroe's quaintly euphonious lines transmuted into the
irritatingly abrupt and barren phraseology of the day. "The Bond
Invincible," by David H. Whittier, is a short story of great power and
skilful construction, suggesting Poe's "Ligeia" in its central theme.
The plot is developed with much dexterity, and the climax comes so
forcibly and unexpectedly upon the reader, that one cannot but admire
Mr. Whittier's mastery of technique. Certain overnice critics may
possibly object to the tale, as containing incidents which no one
survives to relate; but when we reflect that Poe has similarly written a
story without survivors, ("The Masque of the Red Death") we can afford
to applaud without reservation. The complete absence of slang and of
doubtful grammar recommends this tale as a model to other amateur
fiction-writers. "Respite" is a lachrymose lament in five stanzas by the
present critic. The metre is regular, which is perhaps some excuse for
its creation and publication. "By the Waters of the Brook," by Rev.
Eugene B. Kuntz, D. D., is one of the noblest amateur poems of the year.
While the casual reader may find in the long heptameter lines a want of
sing-song facility; the true lover of the Nine pauses in admiration at
the deep flowing nobility of the rhyme. The quick rippling of the brook
is duplicated within each line, rather than from line to line. The
imagery and phraseology are of the sort which only Dr. Kuntz can
fashion, and are rich in that exalted pantheism of fancy which comes to
him who knows Nature in her wilder and more rugged moods and aspects.
"The Pool," by Winifred Virginia Jordan, contains an elusive hint of the
terrible and the supernatural which gives it high rank as poetry. Mrs.
Jordan has two distinct, yet related, styles in verse. One of these
mirrors all the joy and buoyant happiness of life, whilst the other
reflects that undertone of grimness which is sometimes felt through the
exterior of things. The kinship betwixt these styles lies in their
essentially fanciful character, as distinguished from the tiresomely
commonplace realism of the average modern rhymester. Another bit of
sinister psychology in verse is "The Unknown," by Elizabeth Berkeley.
Mrs. Berkeley's style is less restrained than that of Mrs. Jordan, and
presents a picture of stark, meaningless horror, the like of which is
not often seen in the amateur press. It is difficult to pass upon the
actual merit of so peculiar a production, but we will venture the
opinion that the use of italics, or heavy-faced type, is not desirable.
The author should be able to bring out all needed emphasis by words, not
printer's devices. The issue concludes with "Inspiration," a poem by
Lewis Theobald, Jun. The form and rhythm of this piece are quite
satisfactory, but the insipidity of the sentiment leaves much to be
desired. The whole poem savours too much of the current magazine style.

       *       *       *       *       *

=The Coyote= for October is made notable by Editor Harrington's
thoughtful and well compiled article on "Worldwide Prohibition," wherein
an extremely important step in the world's progress is truthfully
chronicled. That legislation against alcohol is spreading rapidly
throughout civilization, is something which not even the densest
champions of "personal liberty" can deny. The utter emptiness of all
arguments in behalf of strong drink is made doubly apparent by the swift
prohibitory enactments of the European nations when confronted by the
emergencies of war, and by the abolition of liquor in a large number of
American states for purely practical reasons. All these things point to
a general recognition of liquor as a foe to governmental and industrial
welfare. Mr. Harrington's style in this essay is clear and in most
respects commendable; though certain passages might gain force and
dignity through a less colloquial manner. In particular, we must protest
against the repeated use of the vulgarism =booze=, a word probably
brought into public favour by the new school of gutter evangelism,
whose chief exponent is the Reverend William Sunday. The verb =to
booze=, =boose=, or =bouse=, meaning "to drink immoderately," and the
adjective =boozy=, =boosy=, or =bousy=, meaning "drunken," are by no
means new to our language, Dryden having written the form =bousy= in
some of his verses; but =booze= as a noun signifying "liquor" is
certainly too vulgar a word for constant employment in any formal
literary composition. Another essay of Mr. Harrington's is "The Divine
Book," a plea for the restoration of the Bible as a source of popular
reading and arbiter of moral conduct. Whatever may be the opinion of the
searching critic regarding the place of the Scriptures in the world of
fact, it is undeniably true that a closer study of the revered volume,
and a stricter adherence to its best precepts, would do much toward
mending the faults of a loose age. We have yet to find a more
efficacious means of imparting virtue and contentment of heart to the
masses of mankind. "Pioneers of New England," an article by Alice M.
Hamlet, gives much interesting information concerning the sturdy
settlers of New Hampshire and Vermont. In the unyielding struggles of
these unsung heroes against the sting of hardship and the asperity of
primeval Nature, we may discern more than a trace of that divine fire of
conquest which has made the Anglo-Saxon the empire builder of all the
ages. In Mr. Harrington's editorial column there is much discussion of a
proposed "International Amateur Press Association," but we fail to
perceive why such an innovation is needed, now that the United has
opened itself unreservedly to residents of all the countries of the

       *       *       *       *       *

=Merry Minutes= for November is a clever publication of
semi-professional character, edited by Miss Margaret Trafford of London,
and containing a pleasant variety of prose, verses, and puzzles. "King
of the Nursery Realm," by Margaret Mahon, is a smooth and musical piece
of juvenile verse which excels in correctness of form rather than in
novelty of thought.

"Bards and Minstrels, and The Augustan Age," by Beryl Mappin, is the
second of a series of articles on English literature and its classical
foundations. The erudition and enthusiasm displayed in this essay speak
well for the future of the authoress, though certain faults of style and
construction demand correction. Careful grammatical study would
eliminate from Miss Mappin's style such solecisms as the use of =like=
for =as=, whilst greater attention to the precepts of rhetoric would
prevent the construction of such awkward sentences as the following:
"The same if one is reading an interesting book, can one not see all
that is happening there as clearly with one's inner eyes as if it was
all taking place before one, and viewed with one's outer ones?" This
passage is not only wanting in coherence and correctness of syntax, but
is exceedingly clumsy through redundancy of statement, and repetition of
the word =one=. This word, though essential to colloquial diction,
becomes very tiresome when used to excess; and should be avoided in many
cases through judicious transpositions of the text. The following is a
revised version of the sentence quoted above: "Thus, in reading an
interesting book, can one not see with the inner eyes all that is
happening there, as clearly as if it were taking place in reality before
the outer eyes?" Other parts of the essay require similar revision.
Concerning the development of the whole, we must needs question the
unity of the topics. Whilst the connecting thread is rather evident
after a second or third perusal, the cursory reader is apt to become
puzzled over the skips from the Graeco-Roman world to the early Saxon
kingdoms, and thence to the dawn of our language amongst the
Anglo-Normans. What Miss Mappin evidently wishes to bring out, is that
the sources of English literature are twofold; being on the one hand the
polished classics of antiquity, inspired by Greece, amplified and
diffused by Rome, preserved by France, and brought to England by the
Normans; and on the other hand the crude but virile products of our
Saxon ancestors, brought from the uncivilized forests of the continent
or written after the settlement in Britain. From this union of
Graeco-Roman classicism with native Anglo-Saxon vitality springs the
unquestioned supremacy of English literature. Assiduous devotion to the
mastery of rhetoric, and the habit of constructing logical synopses
before writing the text of articles would enable Miss Mappin to utilise
her knowledge of literary history in a manner truly worthy of its depth.
"Trinidad and its People," by "F. E. M. Hercules," exhibits a somewhat
maturer style, and forms a very interesting piece of geographical
description. "The Pursuit of the Innocent," is a serial story by Miss
Trafford, and though only a small part of it is printed in the current
issue, we judge that it derives its general atmosphere from the popular
"thrillers" of the day. The dialogue is not wholly awkward, but there is
a noticeable want of proportion in the development of the narrative.
Miss Trafford would probably profit by a more faithful study of the
standard novelists, and a more complete avoidance of the type of fiction
found in modern weekly periodicals such as =Answers= or =Tit-Bits=.
Those who feel impelled to introduce stirring adventure into their
tales, can do so without sacrifice of excitement and interest by
following really classic writers like Poe and Stevenson; or
semi-standard authors like Sir A. Conan Doyle. The puzzles propounded by
Miss Hillman are quite interesting, though matter of this sort is
scarcely to be included within the domain of pure literature. We guess
=airship= as the answer to the first one, but have not space to record
our speculations concerning the second. =Merry Minutes= closes with the
following poem by Master Randolph Trafford, a very young author:

    "Once upon a time, there was a little boy,
      And, if you please, he went to school;
    That little boy, he always would annoy,
      And found at school a very nasty rule."

Without undue flattery to Master Trafford, we may conclusively state
that we deem his poem a great deal better than most of the =vers libre=
effusions which so many of his elders are perpetrating nowadays!

       *       *       *       *       *

=The Scot= for July is devoted completely to the work of the feminine
amateurs of the United States, and is announced by its editor as an
"American 'Petticoat' Number"; a title which might possibly bear
replacement by something rather less colloquial. "Over the Edge of the
World," a poem by Olive G. Owen, is correct in construction and
appropriate in sentiment, deriving much force from the continued
repetition of the first line. "In Morven's Mead," by Winifred V. Jordan,
is one of a series of fanciful poems all bearing the same title. The
present verses show all the charm and delicacy which characterise the
whole. "Patience--A Woman's Virtue," is one of Mrs. Eloise N. Griffith's
thoughtful moral essays, and is as commendable for its precepts as for
its pure style. "His Flapper," by Edna von der Heide, is a clever piece
of trochaic verse in Cockney dialect, which seems, so far as an American
critic can judge, to possess a very vivid touch of local colour. "An Eye
for an Eye," by the same authoress, seems vaguely familiar, having
possibly been published in the amateur press before. If so, it is well
worthy of republication. "Women and Snakes," a sketch by Eleanor J.
Barnhart, is not a misogynistical attempt at comparison, but a theory
regarding the particular fear with which the former are popularly
supposed to regard the latter. Whilst Miss Barnhart writes with the
bravery of the true scientist, we are constrained to remark that a
certain dislike of snakes, mice, and insects is a very real thing; not
only amongst the fair, but equally amongst those sterner masculine souls
who would stoutly deny it if questioned. It is an atavistical fear,
surviving from primitive ages when the venomous qualities of reptiles,
insects, and the like, made their quick avoidance necessary to
uninstructed man. "Be Tolerant," by Winifred V. Jordan, is a didactic
poem of the sort formerly published in =The Symphony=. While it does not
possess in fullest measure the grace and facility observed in Mrs.
Jordan's more characteristic work; it is nevertheless correct and
melodious, easily equalling most poetry of its kind. Mr. McColl's
editorial column, the only masculine feature of the issue, contains a
very noble tribute to the two soldier cousins of Miss von der Heide, who
have laid down their lives for the cause of England and the right. From
such men springs the glory of Britannia.

       *       *       *       *       *

=The Scot= for August opens with Winifred V. Jordan's tuneful lines, "If
You but Smile," whose inspiration and construction are alike of no mean
order. "Hoary Kent," by Benjamin Winskill, is an exquisite sketch of a
region where the past still lives. In an age of turmoil and unrest, it
is a comfort to think that in one spot, at least, the destroying claws
of Time have left no scars. There lie the scenes dear to every son and
grandson of Britain; there are bodied forth the eternal and unchanging
traditions that place above the rest of the world

    "This precious stone set in the silver sea--
    This blessed plot, this earth, this realm, this England."

"Meditation of a Scottish Queen on Imprisonment," a poem by Margaret
Trafford, contains noble passages, but is marred by defective technique.
Passing over the use of the expletives =do= and =doth= as legitimate
archaisms in this case, we must call attention to some awkward
phraseology, and to the roughness of certain lines, which have either
too few or too many syllables. The very first line of the poem requires
contraction, which might be accomplished by substituting =hapless= for
=unhappy=. Line 8 would read better if thus amended:

    "I would that death might come and me release."

The final line of the first stanza lacks a syllable, which might be
supplied by replacing =vile= with =hateful=. The second stanza will pass
as it is, but the entire remainder of the poem requires alteration,
since but two of the lines are of normal decasyllabic length. The
following is rough revision, though we have not attempted to build the
poetry anew:

    Oh! could I breathe again dear Scotland's air;
      Behold once more her stately mountains high,
      Thence view the wide expanse of azure sky,
    Instead of these perpetual walls so bare!

    Could I but see the grouse upon the moor,
      Or pluck again the beauteous heather bell!
      Freedom I know not in this dismal cell,
    As I my anguish from my heart outpour.

    My Scotland! know'st thou thy poor Queen's distress,
      And canst thou hear my wailing and my woe?
      May the soft wind that o'er thy hills doth blow
    Waft thee these thoughts, that I cannot suppress!

"Six Cylinder Happiness," a brief essay by William J. Dowdell, presents
in ingeniously pleasing style a precept not entirely new amongst
philosophers. Mr. Dowdell's skill with the pen is very considerable,
particularly when he ventures outside the domain of slang. We should
like to suggest a slightly less colloquial title for this piece, such as
"Real Happiness." "For Right and Liberty," a poem by Matthew Hilson, is
commendable in sentiment and clever in construction, but lacks
perfection in several details of phraseology. In the third line of the
third stanza the word =ruinous= must be replaced by a true dissyllable,
preferably =ruin'd=. "For Their Country," a short story by Margaret
Trafford, is vivid in plot and truly heroic in moral, but somewhat
deficient in technique, particularly at the beginning. Miss Trafford
should use care in moulding long sentences, and should avoid the
employment of abbreviations like =etc.= in the midst of narrative text.
"That Sunny Smile," by John Russell, is a cleverly optimistic bit of
verse whose rhythm is very facile, but which would be improved by the
addition of two syllables to the third and sixth lines of each stanza.
The rhyme of =round you= and =found true= is incorrect, since the second
syllables of double rhymes must be identical. "The Evil One," by
Narcissus Blanchfield, is announced as "A Prose-poem, after Oscar
Wilde--a long way after." As an allegory it is true to the facts of the
case; though one cannot but feel that there is room for a freer play of
the poetic imagination in so great a subject.

       *       *       *       *       *

=Toledo Amateur= for October is a literary publication which reflects
much credit upon its young editor, Mr. Wesley Hilon Porter, and upon the
several contributors. "Twilight," a correct and graceful poem by Miss
von der Heide opens the issue. "A Sabbath," by Mary Margaret Sisson, is
a sketch of great merit, though not wholly novel in subject. The
hypocrisy of many self-satisfied "pillars of the church" is only too
well known both in life and in literature. At the very close of the
piece, the word =epithet= is used in a slightly incorrect sense, meaning
"motto." =Epithet=, as its Greek derivation shows, signifies an
=adjective= or descriptive expression. "The Workers of the World," by
Dora M. Hepner, is another sociological sketch of no small merit,
pleasantly distinguished by the absence of slang. "Not All," by Olive G.
Owen, is a poem of much fervour, albeit having a somewhat too free use
of italics. The words and rhythm of a poet should be able to convey his
images without the more artificial devices of typographical variation.
Another questionable point is the manner of using archaic pronouns and
verb forms. Miss Owen seems to use both ancient and modern conjugations
of the verb indifferently with such subjects as =thou=. "A Day at Our
Summer Home," by Emma Marie Voigt, is a descriptive sketch of
considerable promise, and "My First Amateur Convention," by Mrs. Addie
L. Porter, is a well written chronicle of events. "The Wild Rose," by
Marguerite Allen, is a poem of no little grace, though beset with many
of the usual crudities of youthful work. In the first place, the
quatrains should have their rhymes regularly recurring; either in both
first and third, and second and fourth lines; or only in second and
fourth. A rhyme occurring only in first and third lines gives an
unmusical cast, since it causes the stanza to end unrhymed. Secondly,
the words =fence= and =scent= do not form a legitimate rhyme. The easy
correctness of the metre is an encouraging sign, and indicates a poetic
talent which Miss Allen would do well to cultivate. Mr. Porter's article
on amateur journalism is interesting and quite just, though we hope that
the United has not quite so "little to offer" the devotee of "so-called
high-class literature" as the author believes. If we are to retain our
cultivated members, or our younger members after they acquire
cultivation, we must necessarily cater to the better grade of taste;
though of course without neglecting the succeeding generation of
novices. The editorial column of this issue is bright and fluent,
concluding one of the best amateur journals of the season.

       *       *       *       *       *

THE UNITED AMATEUR for September contains something only too seldom
found in the amateur press; a really meritorious short story. "The
Shadow on the Trail," by Eleanor J. Barnhart, possesses every element of
good fiction; a substantial and really interesting plot, a logical
development from beginning to conclusion, an adequate amount of
suspense, a climax which does not disappoint, and a praiseworthy degree
of local colour. Besides all of which it is fluent in language and
correct in syntax. The rest of the literary department in this issue is
devoted to verse. "To a Friend," by Alice M. Hamlet, is particularly
pleasing through the hint of old-school technique which its well ordered
phrases convey. The one weak point is the employment of =thy=, a
singular expression, in connexion with several objects; namely, "paper,
pen, and ready hand." =Your= should have been used. The metre is
excellent throughout, and the whole piece displays a gratifying skill on
its author's part. "The Path Along the Sea," by Rev. Eugene B. Kuntz, is
a flawless and beautiful bit of sentimental poetry, cast in fluent and
felicitous heptameter. "Dad," by Horace Fowler Goodwin, is decidedly the
best of this writer's pieces yet to appear in the amateur press. The
defects are mostly technical, including the bad rhyme of =engaged= and
=dismayed=, and the overweighted seventh line of the final stanza. The
latter might be rectified by substituting =blest=, or some other
monosyllable, for =lucky=. "Li'l Baby Mine," by W. Frank Booker, is a
quaint and captivating darky lullaby, whose accuracy of dialect and
atmosphere comes from that first-hand knowledge of the negroes which
only a Southern writer can possess. Mr. Booker is one of our most
promising bards, and will be doubly notable when his style shall have
received its final polish. "When I Gaze on Thee," by Kathleen Foster
Smith, is an amatory poem of much grace and fluency.

       *       *       *       *       *

THE UNITED AMATEUR for October furnishes us with a species of
composition not frequently encountered in amateurdom; an official report
which is also a literary classic. Pres. Campbell's message is really an
essay on contemporary amateur journalism, and contains a multitude of
well stated truths which every member of the fraternity would do well to
peruse. "The Wanderer's Return," by Andrew Francis Lockhart, is a
beautiful piece of anapaestic verse whose flow is as pleasing as its

       *       *       *       *       *

=The Woodbee= for October is edited by Mrs. Ida C. Haughton, and though
not of large size, does credit both to her and to the Columbus Club. "To
the Woodbees," a witty parody of Poe's "Annabel Lee," exhibits Miss
Irene Metzger as the possessor of no little skill in numbers; and
incidentally suggests that other young bards might well improve their
styles by judicious exercises of this sort. Much of the spirit of metre
may be absorbed through copying the works of the standard poets.
"Louise's Letter," a short story by Norma Sanger, contains some of the
defects of early composition, notably an undue hastening of the action
immediately after the letter quoted in the text. The plot involves a
rather unusual coincidence, yet is probably no more overstrained than
that of the average piece of light fiction. "The Ruling Passion," by
Edna M. Haughton, is a story of phenomenal power and interest, forming a
psychological study worthy of more than one perusal. All the
requirements of good fiction, both inspirational and technical, are
complied with to the satisfaction of even the most exacting critic. Miss
Haughton's work is of a very high grade, and would be welcomed in larger
quantities by the amateur world. Miss Harwood's interesting News Notes
and Mrs. Haughton's thoughtful editorial conclude an issue whose every
feature deserves commendation.

                                                  H. P. LOVECRAFT,



=The Conservative= for January deserved distinction for its opening
poem, "The Vagrant," which proceeds from the thrice-gifted pen of Mrs.
W. V. Jordan. The piece is one well worthy of close attention, since it
contains to a marked degree those elements of charm which render its
author so prominent among amateur bards. Bold and discriminating choice
of words and phrases, apt and unique images and personifications, and a
carefully sustained atmosphere of delicate unreality, all unite to
impart a characteristic beauty to the lines. This beauty, searchingly
analysed, reveals itself as something more sylvan and spontaneous than
studied and bookish; indeed, all of Mrs. Jordan's verse is born rather
than built.

"The Unbreakable Link," a prose sketch by Arthur W. Ashby, is smooth and
graphic in its delineation of a dream or vision of the past. The ancient
heritage of Old England and its hoary edifices is here vividly set
forth. Mr. Ashby's work, always notable for its command and intelligent
interpretation of detail, is welcome wherever encountered.

"When New-Year Comes," a poem by Rev. Eugene B. Kuntz, exhibits its
brilliant author in a most felicitous though decidedly novel vein.
Turning from his usual Alexandrines and heptameters, and laying aside
his characteristically stately and sonorous vocabulary, Dr. Kuntz has
produced a gem of brevity and simplicity in octosyllabic couplets. The
ease and naturalness of the language are so great that the reader feels
no other words or constructions could have been used with equal effect.
The remainder of =The Conservative=, being the work of the present
critic, deserves no particular mention.

       *       *       *       *       *

=The Coyote= for January bears an attractive cover design illustrating
the gentle beast after which the publication is named. The opening
piece, an alleged poem by the present critic, contains an humiliating
error for which none but the author is responsible. The impossible word
=supremest= in line 16, should read =sublimest=. The author is likewise
responsible for the omission of the following couplet after line 26:

    "Around his greatness pour disheart'ning woes,
      But still he tow'rs above his conquering foes."

The rest of the magazine is devoted to prose of practical nature,
containing suggestions by Editor Harrington and Rev. Graeme Davis for
the resuscitation of one of the dormant press associations.

       *       *       *       *       *

=The Coyote= for April, home-printed and reduced to the conventional 5◊7
page, opens with Mrs. Jordan's pleasant lines on "The Duty." While the
general sentiment of this piece is by no means novel, the powerful and
distinctive touch of the authoress is revealed by such highly original
passages as the following:

    "And black-wing'd, clucking shadows
      Brought out their broods of fears."

A poet of rather different type is displayed in "The Five-Minute
School," by Lovell Leland Massie. Mr. Massie is said to have "an
unlimited supply of poems on hand which he desires to publish," but it
is evident that some preliminary alterations would not be undesirable.
In the first place, the metre requires correction; though it is
remarkably good for beginner's work. Particularly weak lines are the
second in stanza four, and the second in stanza six. The phraseology is
stiff but by no means hopeless, and proclaims nothing more serious than
the need of greater poetic familiarity on the author's part. The rhymes
are good with two exceptions; =past= and =class=, and =jewel= and
=school=. Mr. Massie, however, is not the first bard to reduce =jew-el=
to "=jool=!" "The Coyote," by Obert O. Bakken, is a worthy and
interesting composition upon a well known animal. "A Soul," by Olive G.
Owen, is reprinted from the professional press, and amply merits the
honour. The poem is of unexceptionable technique and adequate sentiment.
Miss Owen's brilliant, fruitful, and long-continued poetical career has
few parallels in the amateur world. "The Amateur Christian," a brief
prose essay by Benjamin Winskill, presents more than one valuable truth;
though we wish the word "=par=," near the close, might be expanded to
proper fulness. We presume that it is intended to stand for =paragraph=.

       *       *       *       *       *

=The Crazyquilt= for December is a highly entertaining illustrated
publication whose exact classification is a matter of some difficulty.
We might perhaps best describe it as a bubbling over of youthful
spirits, with here and there a touch of unobtrusive seriousness. The
editor, Mr. Melvin Ryder, is to be commended upon his enterprise; which
consists in approximately equal parts of prose, verse, and whimsical
=vers libre=. It is the last named product which most absorbs our
attention, since the given specimens afford a very brilliant satire on
the absurd medium in which they are set. The choicest selections are due
to the fertile pen of Mr. William S. Wabnitz, assisted by that not
unknown classic called "Mother Goose," whose ideas accord well with the
thought of the new "poetry." "A Futuresk Romance," by Mr. Wabnitz alone,
is of exceeding cleverness. Among the genuine poems, we may give
particular commendation to "Bluebirds are Flying Over," by Mrs. Dora
Hepner Moitoret; "Longin' and Yearnin'," "Spring," "Verses," and
"Dreaming," by J. H. Gavin; and "Stars After Rain," by William S.
Wabnitz. Mr. Gavin's "Dreaming" is a hauntingly pretty piece, though
marred by an imperfect line (the twelfth) and by an incorrect
accentuation of the word =romance=. This word should be accented on the
final syllable.

"Odd Patches and Even" is the title of the editorial column, which
contains many words of wisdom (though not too grave) by Mr. Ryder. We
hope to behold future issues of =The Crazyquilt=.

       *       *       *       *       *

=Dowdell's Bearcat= for October, partly compiled and financed by the
United's official board in lieu of the missing =Official Quarterly=,
comes to us unbound and without a cover; yet contains, aside from the
inexcusable editorials, a rich array of meritorious material. Mr.
Dowdell's comment on radical eccentrics and malcontents is apt and
clever, showing how bright this young writer can be when he avoids bad
taste and personalities.

"A Little Lovely Lyric," by Mrs. Dora H. Moitoret, is one of the
choicest of this author's poems, having a spirit and cadence of rare
quality. In "The Real Amateur Spirit," Pres. Campbell presents in
vigorous prose many important truths and principles of amateur
journalism. The concluding sentence forms a definition of our animating
impulse which deserves repeated publication as a motto and inspiration.
"An American To Mother England," by the present critic, is an expression
of cultural and ancestral ties which have now, through the fortunes of
war, grown doubly strong. The word =Saxon=, in the last line, should
begin with a capital. "Dream Life" is a vivid piece of prose mysticism
by our versatile and gifted Vice-President, Mr. Ira A. Cole. Defying
precise grouping either as a sketch or a story, this enigmatical bit of
fancy deserves highest praise for its fluent diction, rich imagination,
potent atmosphere, and graphic colouring. Mr. Cole has a bright future
in prose as well as in verse for in both of these media he is a genuine
and spontaneous poet. "United Impressions," by Mrs. E. L. Whitehead, is
clear, interesting, and well-written, as is also the sketch by Mary M.
Sisson entitled "Passion versus Calm." "The Elm Tree," by James Tobey
Pyke, is a poem of remarkable sweetness and nobility, through whose
lofty sentiment shines the true splendour of the inspired bard. There is
a master touch in the passage referring to

    "----a sweet heaven
    Of singing birds and whispering leaves."

Mrs. Winifred Virginia Jordan, without one of whose delightful verses no
amateur publication can really compete, contributes a sparkling
succession of amatory anapaests entitled "Dear." The middle stanza rises
to great lyric heights, and should prove especially captivating to such
discriminating critics of lyricism as our colleague Mr. Kleiner.

       *       *       *       *       *

=The Enthusiast= for February is a hectographed publication issued by
our latest young recruit, Mr. James Mather Mosely of Westfield, Mass.
Mr. Mosely is a youth of sterling ability and great promise, whose work
is already worthy of notice and encouragement. The editor's leading
article, "The Secret Inspiration of a Man Who Made Good," shows unusual
fluency and literary assurance, though we might wish for a more
dignified title. The expression =to make good= is pure slang, and should
be supplanted by one of the many legitimate English words and phrases
which convey the same meaning. Mr. Mosely's editorials are likewise open
to criticism on the ground of colloquialism, though the natural
exuberance of youth excuses much. "The Birds," by Harold Gordon Hawkins,
is a truly excellent specimen of juvenile verse, which contains much
promise for the author's efforts. Increased familiarity with standard
literary models will remove all evidences of stiffness now perceptible.
"How Men Go Wrong," a conventional moral homily by Edgar Holmes Plummer,
shows a slight want of original ideas and a tendency to commonplaces;
though having much merit in construction. Another subject might display
Mr. Plummer's talent to better advantage. The use of the word =habitat=
for =inhabitant= or =denizen= is incorrect, for its true meaning is a
=natural locality= or =place of habitation=. "Blueberry Time," by Ruth
Foster, is obviously a schoolgirl composition, albeit a pleasing one.

F. R. Starr's cartoon scarcely comes within the province of a literary
critic, but is doubtless an excellent example of elementary art. We
question, however, the place of popular cartoons in serious papers; the
"funny picture" habit is essentially a plebeian one, and alien to
journalism of the highest grade. All things considered, =The Enthusiast=
is a creditable exponent of junior letters, which deserves the
encouragement and support of the United.

       *       *       *       *       *

=Excelsior= for March is in many respects the most notable of the
season's amateur magazines edited by our brilliant Laureate Recorder,
Miss Verna McGeoch, it contains a surprisingly ample and impressive
collection of prose and verse by our best writers; including the
delectable lyricist Perrin Holmes Lowrey, whose work has hitherto been
unrepresented in the press of the United. The issue opens with Mr.
Jonathan E. Hoag's stately "Ode to Old Ocean," whose appropriate imagery
and smooth couplets are exceedingly pleasant to the mind and ear alike.
Mr. Hoag's unique charm is no less apparent in the longer reminiscent
piece entitled "The Old Farm Home," which describes the author's boyhood
scenes at Valley Falls, New York, where he was born more than eighty-six
years ago. This piece has attracted much favorable notice in the
professional world, having been reprinted in =The Troy Times=. Perrin
Holmes Lowrey contributes a cycle of three poems touching on the
beauties of the month of April; one of which, "April in Killarney," will
this summer be set to music by Leopold Godowsky. The style of Mr. Lowrey
possesses an attractive individuality and delicacy which is already
bringing him celebrity in the larger literary sphere. What could be more
thoroughly enchanting than such a stanza as the following?

    "Oh, it's April in Killarney,
    Early April in Killarney,
      Where the Irish lanes are merry
        And the lyric breezes blow;
      And the scented snows of cherry
      Drift across the fields of Kerry--
    Oh, it's April in Killarney
        And she loves the April so."

"Treasure Trove," by Henry Cleveland Wood, is a pleasant and urbane bit
of light verse; while "Percival Lowell," by Howard Phillips Lovecraft,
is an abominably dull elegiac piece of heavy verse. Edwin Gibson's
"Sonnet to Acyion" deserves keen attention as the work of a capable and
rapidly developing young bard. "Real versus Ideal" is a bright metrical
divertissement by John Russell, which suffers through the omission of
the opening line by the printer. This line is:

    "For sale--a cottage by the sea."

We recommend the final line to the attention of those careless bards who
pronounce =real= as =reel=, and =ideal= as =ideel=. The correct
quantities, as there given, will serve as examples. Verse of deeper
quality is furnished by amateurdom's foremost expressionist, Anne
Tillery Renshaw, two of whose poems appear. "The Singing Sea" contains
an error of technique, =hope= and =note= being placed in attempted
rhyme; but the structure is in general very regular, considering the
author's radical theories. Of the merit of the sentiment it is
unnecessary to speak. "A Wish" is cast in less fluent metre, but is so
replete with aptness, grandeur and refinement of ideas, that the
sternest critic must needs view its form with lenient glance. The prose
contents of =Excelsior= are worthy company for the verse. Paul J.
Campbell is represented by a very brief though characteristic essay
entitled "The Price of Freedom," wherein appears the sound reasoning and
courageous philosophy for which Mr. Campbell has always been
distinguished. Another notable essay or review is "English History," by
Henry Clapham McGavack. Mr. McGavack here ably employs his keen analysis
and lucid style in dissecting Prof. Meyer's absurdly biased but
diabolically clever pro-German History of England.

"The Association," by David H. Whittier, teems with good advice
concerning the proper management of the United. Mr. Whittier's style is
smooth and dignified, exhibiting a sober maturity unusual for a young
author. "Tonio's Salvation," a short story by Edna von der Heide, is the
only bit of fiction in the magazine. This brief glimpse of the
cosmopolitan child life of a modern city is marked equally by
naturalness of plot and facility of technic, forming a piece quite
professional in quality and atmosphere. =Excelsior= has done much to
sustain the best traditions of the United, and we hope its future
appearance will be frequent and regular. The editorial column reveals
the genius and exquisite taste of its gifted publisher.

       *       *       *       *       *

=Merry Minutes= for December-January is an interesting number of an
interesting publication, opening with some extremely clever cartoons by
the United's soldier-member, George William Stokes. "Merry Minutes," a
poem in trochaic measure by Olive G. Owen, is distinguished by the touch
of beauty characteristic of all its author's work; but has a singular
sort of rhyming in the first and third lines of the stanzas. The cadence
seems to call for double rhymes, yet only the final syllables agree. The
last word of the first stanza is unfortunately shorn by the printer of
its final =s=. "The Dancing Tiger" is an excellent short story by
Raymond Blathwayt, which might, however, be improved in style by a
slightly closer attention to punctuation and structure of sentences.
"Home," by Margaret Mahon, is a poem in that rather popular modern
measure which seems to waver betwixt the iambus and anapaest. The
imagery is pleasing, and the sentiment, though not novel, is acceptable.
"The Choice," a serial story by Beryl Mappin, exhibits the same
immaturities of style which mark the didactic articles of this author;
yet so active is the imagination shown in some of the passages, that we
believe Miss Mappin requires only time and harder study in order to
become a very meritorious writer. The syntactical structure of this
story is, on the average, smoother than that of Miss Mappin's essays;
indeed, there is reason to believe that fiction is the better suited to
her pen. "Absence," by Winifred Virginia Jordan, is a brief poem of
faultless harmony whose quaintly sparkling imagery gives to an old theme
a new lustre. "Education in Trinidad" is another of F. E. Hercules'
terse and informing descriptive sketches. "Alley," by Mrs. Jordan, is a
light pulsing lyric of almost Elizabethan quality, one of whose rhymes
is of a type which has caused much discussion in the United's critical
circles. The native pronunciation of New England makes of =scarf= and
=laugh= an absolutely perfect rhyme; this perfection depending upon the
curtailed phonetic value of the letter =r=; which in a place such as
this is silent, save as it modifies the quality of the preceding vowel.
In the London of Walker's day the same condition existed. But the tongue
and ear of the American West have become accustomed to a certain roll
which causes =scarf= to be enunciated as =scarrf=, thus throwing it out
of rhyme with words of similar sound which lack the =r=. The Westerner
would have to write =scahf=, in order to express to his own mind the
New-England sound of =scarf=. Hitherto, the present critic has called no
notice to rhymes of this type; and has, indeed, frequently employed them
himself; but recognition of etymological principles involved will
hereafter impel him to abandon and discourage the practice, which was
not followed by the older classicists. To the New-England author this
renunciation means relinquishment of many rhymes which are to his ear
perfect, yet in the interests of tradition and universality it seems
desirable that the sacrifice be made. "Why Mourn Thy Soldier Dead," is a
poem of brave sorrow by Olive G. Owen. The fervour of the lines is deep,
and the sentiments are of great nobility. Structurally the piece is
flawless. "Chaucer, the Father of English Poetry," is the third of Miss
Mappin's series of articles on literary history. An unfortunate misprint
relegates to the bottom of the footnote a line which should immediately
follow the specimen verse. The style is decidedly clearer and better
than that of the preceding instalment of the series. "When You Went," by
Mrs. Jordan, is an engagingly pathetic poem; with just that touch of the
unseen which lends so particular a charm to Jordanian verse. Miss
Trafford's appealing lines on "A Girl to Her Dead Lover" form a vividly
pathetic glimpse into low life. The poetic form is quite satisfactory.
As a whole, =Merry Minutes= constitutes a rather remarkable enterprise,
sustaining through troubled times the spark of activity which will
kindle anew the fires of British amateur journalism after the victorious
close of the war. May America, in her new crisis, do as well!

       *       *       *       *       *

=Merry Minutes= for February opens with Margaret Mahon's poem "God's
Solace," a smooth and restful bit of versification. "Spencer and the
Beginning of the Elizabethan Era" is the current article of Beryl
Mappin's series on English Literature, and contains some very promising
passages, especially the almost poetic introduction. Miss Mappin has an
unusual fund of knowledge, and a pleasing gift of expression; but these
advantages are as yet not fully systematised or marshalled to best
effect. Miss Trafford's serial, "The Pursuit of the Innocent," concludes
in this number. This story bears many of the signs of juvenile
workmanship, the present instalment being so hurried in action that it
almost attains the brevity of a synopsis. Careful and analytical perusal
of standard fiction would assist greatly in maturing and perfecting the
author's style. "Religion and Superstition" is the current article in
F. E. M. Hercules' interesting series on Trinidad; and exhibits all the
polish, lucidity and conciseness of its predecessors. "His Photo," by
Master Randolph Trafford, is a very promising poem by a youthful bard.
Every rhyme is correct, which is more than can be claimed for a great
deal of the poesy perpetrated by older and more pretentious versifiers
on this side of the Atlantic. The present instalment of "The Choice," by
Beryl Mappin, is marked by considerable fluency and animation, though
possessed of certain limitations previously mentioned.

       *       *       *       *       *

=Merry Minutes= for March commences with the present critic's dull lines
"On Receiving a Picture of the Marshes at Ipswich." Passing to more
meritorious matter, we encounter Miss Mappin's latest literary article,
"Shakespeare," which interests even whilst it reveals deficiencies of
prose technique. "Jimmy's Little Girl," by Joseph Parks, is a vivid
transcript of military life by a military author. While the tale is not
one of vast originality, it nevertheless recommends itself through
simplicity and verisimilitude. Miss Mappin's serial "The Choice,"
concludes in this issue. It is very praiseworthy for its many colourful
passages, but mildly censurable for its melodramatic atmosphere and
rhetorical lapses. The opening sentence of this instalment contains
instances of both of these faults: "A terrible foreboding gripped
Christabel's heart in bands of steel, as if for a moment to cleave her
tongue to the roof of her mouth." This is the last number of the
publication to appear under the present name. Beginning with the April
issue it will be known as =The Little Budget=; and will contain, on the
average, a rather higher grade of reading matter than heretofore. But in
forming a judgment of any kind, it is well to recognize that the
magazine's appeal is frankly popular.

       *       *       *       *       *

=Pep= for February is the first number of a somewhat extraordinary
enterprise conducted by George W. Macauley with the laudable object of
waking up a sleeping amateurdom. The editor very justly takes the press
associations to task for their manifold sins, particularly the dubious
circumstances surrounding a recent convention, in which it is needless
to say the United had no part. Mr. Macauley's literary attainments are
very considerable, but as yet unperfected. Possessed of rare charm in
descriptive prose, he needs to exercise a greater nicety of construction
in order to develop fully the riches which are his. Gifted with a large,
facile, and ingenious vocabulary, he is not sufficiently precise and
discriminating in his employment of words according to their finer
shades of meaning. This carelessness makes faults of his very virtues;
for his vigour of expression tends to take the form of =outre= and
inadmissible rhetoric, whilst his talent for word-painting tends to
degenerate into word-coining. It would be quite possible for an acute
critic to compile a dictionary of peculiarly Macaulian words and
phrases, to which the current =Pep= might contribute such terms as
=probverb= (proverb?). Spelling and punctuation also should claim more
of Mr. Macauley's time and attention; for he might easily avoid such
slips as =believeing=, =it's= (for =its=), =thots=, and the like. In
short, Mr. Macauley is at present a gifted writer and brilliant editor
labouring under the disadvantages of haste, carelessness, and perhaps a
dash of radicalism.

       *       *       *       *       *

=The Phoenician= for Spring is the first number of an enthusiastically
conducted semi-professional venture of juvenile nature, whose connexion
with the United hinges on the associate editorship of our clever
recruit, Mr. James Mather Mosely. Like =Merry Minutes=, this publication
is of the popular rather than conservative sort; being obviously
designed primarily to please, secondarily to instruct. We deplore the
use of commonplace and sensational topics, colloquial expressions, and
malformed spelling; but make due concessions to the youth of the
editorial staff and the nascent state of the periodical. So promising
are the young publishers that time cannot fail to refine and mature
their efforts. "An Hour with a Lunatic," by Harry B. Sadik, is a very
short and very thrilling tale of the "dime novel" variety. Mr. Sadik has
a commendable sense of the dramatic, which would serve him well should
he choose a less sensational field of endeavour. "Our Soldiers," a
Canadian mother's war song by Mrs. Minnie E. Taylor, exhibits merit,
though having many signs of imperfect technic. In line 2 of the first
stanza =bid= should be replaced by =bade=. The final rhyme of the poem,
that of =gain= and =name=, is false and inadmissible. Metrically there
is much roughness, which careful study and diligent reading of good
verse can in time correct. "Candy and Health," and "If You Were Down and
Out," by James Mather Mosely, are two typical newspaper interviews with
representative men. Mr. Mosely shows much aptitude as a reporter, having
an almost professional ease and fluency. This is not literature, but it
is good journalism. "The Dinner Never Paid For," by Viola Jameson, is a
piece of characteristic light fiction; commendably innocuous, and not at
all overburdened with philosophical complexity. "The Secret of Success,"
by Edith L. Clark, is a promising bit of didactic prose. "The End of the
Road," by Pearl K. Merritt, is a brief essay of substantial worth. "The
Toll of the Sea," a poem by Harold Gordon Hawkins, shows considerable
merit despite irregularities. "Memories," by Arthur Goodenough, well
sustains the high poetical reputation of its author, though it is
cruelly marred by the illogical and censurable "simplified" spelling
which the young editors see fit to employ. One line affords a silent but
striking instance of the utter senselessness and confusion of the new
orthographical fad. This line reads:

    "Of human =thot= might well be =wrought=."

Now in the first place, =thot= does not express the true pronunciation
of =thought=. The word, thus written, tends to acquire the vocal quality
of =shot= or =blot=, as distinguished from =taught= or =brought=.
Secondly, in this place it is out of accord with =wrought=, which is
correctly spelled. If Messrs. Plummer and Mosely would be logical, let
them write =wrought= as =wrot=--or perhaps plain =rot= would be still
more correct and phonetic, besides furnishing a laconic punning
commentary on simple spelling in general. =The Phoenician's= editorial
column is conducted with laudable seriousness, the item of "The Power of
Books" being well worthy of perusal. What could best be spared from the
magazine are the vague jokes and cartoons, purposeless "fillers" of
miscellaneous nature, and columns of idle gossip about things in
general. Some of the moving picture items are greatly suggestive of what
a newspaper man would dub "press agent stuff." The magazine represents a
degree of purpose and energy quite rare amongst the anaemic youth of
today, and should receive corresponding encouragement from the members
of the United. Those who are inclined to censure its professional aspect
would do well to remember the much-vaunted beginnings of amateur
journalism, when the most highly respected sheets were of this selfsame

       *       *       *       *       *

THE UNITED AMATEUR for November is heavily burdened with a sombre and
sinister short story from our own pen, entitled "The Alchemist." This is
our long unpublished credential to the United, and constitutes the first
and only piece of fiction we have ever laid before a critical and
discerning public wherefore we must needs beg all the charitable
indulgence the Association can extend to an humble though ambitious
tyro. A more interesting feature of the magazine is the biography of Mr.
Fritter, written by our brilliant Official Editor, Andrew Francis
Lockhart. Mr. Lockhart's quaint and friendly prose style is here
displayed at its best, giving a vivid and sympathetic portrayal of his
prominent subject. "Beyond the Law," by Mary Faye Durr, is a light short
story of excellent idea and construction, whose only censurable point is
the use of "simplified" spelling. We believe that some procedure of
quite drastic nature should be taken against the spread of this empty
innovation before our settled orthography shall have become completely
disorganized. Even in the United we can "do our bit." Our editors should
band together in an effort to exclude the new forms from their
publications, and our manuscript managers should see that every piece
passing through their hands is duly purged of these radical distortions.
At the same time, a series of articles explaining and analysing the
spelling problem should be given wide publicity. The poetry in this
issue is of encouraging quality. George M. Whiteside, in "Dream of the
Ideal," gives indications of real genius; at the same time displaying a
little of the technical infelicity which has marked his earlier verse.
Mr. Whiteside's greatest weakness is in the domain of rhyme, a
noticeable error in the present poem being the attempted rhyming of
=hours= with =bars= and =stars=. "I Know a Garden," by Agnes Richmond
Arnold, is a tuneful and beautiful lyric of a somewhat Elizabethan type.
The metre, as the lines are rendered, appears to be quite unusual; but
scansion reveals the fact that it is none other than the octosyllabic
couplet, disguised by the printer's art.

       *       *       *       *       *

THE UNITED AMATEUR for December begins with "A Girl's Ambition," a poem
by Margaret Trafford. The general idea of the piece is both ingenious
and appropriate, but the language and technical development leave
considerable to be desired. In the first place, the rhyming plan is
unfortunate; the opening and concluding couplets of each stanza being
unrhymed. In the second place, the metre is irregular; departing very
widely in places from the iambic heptameter which appears to be the
dominant measure. Miss Trafford should cultivate an ear for rhythm, at
the same time counting very carefully the syllables in each line she
composes. A third point requiring mention is the occasional awkwardness
of expression, a juvenile fault which will doubtless amend itself in
time. Just now we will call attention to only one defect--the
exceedingly forced abbreviation "=dresses'd=" for =dresses would=. "To
My Physician," by M. Estella Shufelt, is a smooth, graceful, and serious
poem whose only possible fault is the infrequency of rhyme. This is not
a technical defect, since the plan of construction is well maintained
throughout; but we believe a poem of this type requires more than one
rhyme to each stanza of eight lines. "The Old Inn," a stirring short
story by Gertrude L. Merkle, is a very promising piece of work, albeit
somewhat conventional and melodramatic. The alliterative romance of
Harry Henders and Hazel Hansen has a genuinely mid-Victorian flavour.
"Dead Men Tell No Tales," a short story by Ida Cochran Haughton, is a
ghastly and gruesome anecdote of the untenanted clay; related by a
village dressmaker. The author reveals much comprehension of rural
psychology in her handling of the theme; an incident which might easily
shake the reason of a sensitive and imaginative person, merely
"unnerves" the two quaint and prim maiden ladies. Poe would have made of
this tale a thing to gasp and tremble at; Mrs. Haughton, with the same
material, constructs genuine though grim comedy!

       *       *       *       *       *

THE UNITED AMATEUR for January contains Editor Lockhart's captivatingly
graceful retrospect of the older amateur journalism, concluding with a
just and eloquent appeal for the revival of our ancient enthusiasm. "Who
Pays," by Helene H. Cole, is a brief and tragic story of considerable
sociological significance. We deplore the use of the false verbal form
=alright=; for while the expression =all right= may well occur in
conversation of the character uttering it, the two words should be
written out in full. "To a Babe," by Olive G. Owen, embodies in
impeccable verse a highly clever and pleasing array of poetical
conceits; and deserves to be ranked amongst the choicest of recent
amateur offerings. "Girls are Like Gold," by Paul J. Campbell, is a
striking and witty adaptation of Thomas Hood's celebrated lines on

    "Gold! Gold! Gold! Gold!
    Bright and yellow, hard and cold."

Mr. Campbell exhibits both ingenuity and metrical ability in this facile
=jeu d'esprit=.

       *       *       *       *       *

THE UNITED AMATEUR for March contains "Love's Scarlet Roses," an
exquisite piece of lyric verse by Mary Henrietta Lehr of California.
Miss Lehr, a scholar and poetic genius of high order, is a prominent
amateur of a few years ago, lately returned to activity after a period
of endeavour in other fields. Her verse is uniformly distinguished by
depth of inspiration, delicacy of sentiment, and grace of structure;
occupying a place amongst the rarest products of amateurdom. Another
poem of remarkable merit in this issue is "The Gods' Return," by Olive
G. Owen. Inspired by a recent article from the pen of Richard Le
Gallienne, these well-wrought lines interpret one of the subtlest yet
most potent of the varied moods created in the human breast by the
momentous occurrences of the age. Looking over the file of THE UNITED
AMATEUR for the present administrative year, one may discover a diverse
and meritorious array of poetry and prose, which amply proves the
contention of Pres. Campbell that a literary official organ is not only
feasible but eminently desirable.

       *       *       *       *       *

=The Woodbee= for January introduces to amateurdom a new bard, Mr. J.
Morris Widdows, Hoosier exponent of rural simplicity. Mr. Widdows has
enjoyed considerable success in the professional world as a poet,
song-writer, and musical composer; hence it is no untried or faltering
quill which he brings within our midst. "Stringtown on the Pike," which
adorns the first page of the magazine, is a very pleasing bit of dialect
verse whose accent and cadences suggest the work of the late James
Whitcomb Riley. The metre is gratifyingly correct, and the rusticisms
exceedingly colourful; though the average reader might find it somewhat
difficult to associate the name Miko with Yankee countryside. Such a
praenomen carries with it suggestions of a rich brogue rather than a
nasal drawl. "Personal Liberty," a brilliant short essay by Leo Fritter,
ably and sensibly explodes one of the characteristically specious
arguments of the liquor advocates. Mr. Fritter's legal training aids him
in presenting a clear, polished, and logical arraignment of
anti-prohibition hypocrisy. "Just a Little Love Tale," by Elizabeth M.
Ballou, is a smoothly constructed bit of very light fiction. Mrs.
Haughton's editorial, "A Review of Reviews," is concise and sensible;
giving a merited rebuke to those who seek to create unrest and
dissatisfaction in amateur journalism.

       *       *       *       *       *

=The Woodbee= for April is an ample and attractive number, opening with
Dora H. Moitoret's excellent poem in the heroic couplet, "The April
Maiden." The metre of this piece follows the fashion of the nineteenth
rather than of the eighteenth century, having very few "end-stopt" lines
or sense-limiting couplets. The final rhyme of =caprice= and =these= is
somewhat imperfect, the effect being that of an attempted rhyme of =s=
and =z=. "Her Fateful Day," a short story by Maude Dolby, is pleasing
and ingenious despite certain improbabilities. "Ashes of Roses," by
Frieda M. Sanger, belongs to that abnormal and lamentable type of
pseudo-literature known as =vers libre=, and is the first serious
specimen of its kind ever inflicted upon the United. We are sincerely
sorry that one so gifted as Miss Sanger should descend to this hybrid,
makeshift medium, when she could so well express her thoughts either in
legitimate prose or legitimate verse. "Free Verse" has neither the flow
of real verse nor the dignity of real prose. It tends to develop
obnoxious eccentricities of expression, and is closely associated with
bizarre and radical vagaries of thought. It is in nine cases out of ten
a mere refuge of the obtuse, hurried, indolent, ignorant, or negligent
bard who cannot or will not take the time and pains to compose genuine
poetry or even passable verse. It has absolutely no justification for
existence, and should be shunned by every real aspirant to literary
excellence, no matter how many glittering inducements it seems to hold
out. True, a person of very little knowledge or ability can make himself
appear extremely cultured, aesthetic, and aristocratic by juggling a few
empty words in the current fashion; scribbling several lines of unequal
length, each beginning with a capital letter. It is an admirably easy
way to acquire a literary reputation without much effort. As the late
W. S. Gilbert once wrote of a kindred fad:

      "The meaning doesn't matter
      If it's only idle chatter
    Of a transcendental kind."

But we believe that the members of the United are more earnest and solid
in their ambition, hence we advise Miss Sanger to turn her undoubted
talent into more substantial channels. That she possesses genuine poetic
genius is amply evident, even from the specimen of =vers libre= before
us. The labour of real versification will be more arduous, but the
fruits will prove richer in proportion. It is better to glean a little
gold than much fools' gold. Miss Sanger's nephew, Mr. Norman Sanger, is
more conservative in his tastes, and is creditably represented by his
lines on "The Ol' Fishin' Hole." This piece contains many of the
rhythmical defects common to juvenile composition, but is pervaded by a
naturalness and pastoral simplicity which promise well for its young
author. Wider reading and closer rhetorical study will supply all that
Mr. Sanger now lacks. At present we should advise him to seek metrical
regularity by taking some one well defined line as a model, and moulding
all the others to it by counting the syllables and intoning the accents
in each. In the case of the present poem, the very first line will serve
as a perfect guide; its conformity to the iambic heptameter plan being
absolute. The alternating stresses of the fourteen syllables should be
noted and copied:

    "The =days= are =get=-tin' =balm=-y =now=, and =first=-est =thing=
            you =know=."

Two defects of rhyme are to be noted. =By= and =lullaby= cannot properly
be rhymed, since the rhyming syllables are =identical=, instead of
merely =similar=. "=Rapcher=" and =laughter= do not rhyme at all. Miss
Haughton's essay "Is a Lie Ever Justifiable?" forms a prominent feature
of the magazine, and presents some very ingenious though dogmatic
reasoning. Mrs. Haughton's editorial, "United We Stand," is an
exceedingly timely appeal for genuine amateur activity, and should be of
much value in stimulating a renaissance of the Association. The passage
reading "Who has been the latest victim of Cupid? =Whom= of Hymen?"
arouses a query as to the grammatical status of =whom=. We fear this is
what Franklin P. Adams of the =New York Tribune= playfully calls a
"=Cyrilization=." It is, as all readers of "The Conning Tower" can
testify, a remarkably common error; and one into which many of the
leading authors of the age frequently fall. The jingle "A Soldier's
Delight," by George William Stokes, concludes the current issue in
tuneful manner.

Amidst the present dearth of amateur magazines it is ever a delight to
behold =The Woodbee=; meritorious in contents and regular in issuance.
The debt of the United to the Columbus Club is indeed a heavy one.

                                                  H. P. LOVECRAFT,

                   THE UNITED AMATEUR




    As Columbia's brave scions, in anger array'd,
      Once defy'd a proud monarch and built a new nation;
    'Gainst their brothers of Britain unsheath'd the sharp blade
      That hath ne'er met defeat nor endur'd desecration;
          So must we in this hour
          Show our valour and pow'r,
    And dispel the black perils that over us low'r:
      Whilst the sons of Britannia, no longer our foes,
      Will rejoice in our triumphs and strengthen our blows!

    See the banners of Liberty float in the breeze
      That plays light o'er the regions our fathers defended;
    Hear the voice of the million resound o'er the leas,
      As the deeds of the past are proclaim'd and commended;
          And in splendour on high
          Where our flags proudly fly,
    See the folds we tore down flung again to the sky:
      For the Emblem of England, in kinship unfurl'd,
      Shall divide with Old Glory the praise of the world!

    Bury'd now are the hatreds of subject and King,
      And the strife that once sunder'd an Empire hath vanish'd.
    With the fame of the Saxon the heavens shall ring
      As the vultures of darkness are baffled and banish'd:
          And the broad British sea,
          Of her enemies free,
    Shall in tribute bow gladly, Columbia, to thee:
      For the friends of the Right, in the field side by side,
      Form a fabric of Freedom no hand can divide!

                                            H. P. LOVECRAFT.


=The Conservative= for July opens with Ira A. Cole's delightful and
melodious lines "In Vita Elysium" (Heaven in Life), which present a
strong arraignment of those conventional theologians who deem all things
beautiful reserved for a vague existence after death. While the orthodox
reader may deem the flight of the imagination too free, the rational and
appreciative litterateur will delight in the vigour of imagination and
delicacy of fancy displayed. The metrical structure is beyond reproach
in taste and fluency, the regular and spirited heroic couplets affording
a refreshing contrast to the harsh and languid measures of the day. Mr.
Cole's poetical future is bright indeed, for he possesses an innate
conception of fitness and poetic values which too few of his
contemporaries can boast. We wish to emphasize to those readers who are
familiar with =The Conservative's= editorial policy, that the lines
appear practically without revision; every bold conception and stroke of
genius being Mr. Cole's own. Two couplets in particular delight the ear
and the imagination, proving the author's claim to distinction as a poet
of the purest classical type:

    "Go! Go! vain man, to those unbounded fanes
    Where God's one proven priest--fair Nature--reigns."

    "Uplifted, glad, thy spirit then shall know
    That life is light, and heaven's here below!"

"The Genesis of the Revolutionary War," by Henry Clapham McGavack, is
one of those searchingly keen bits of iconoclastic analysis which have
made Mr. McGavack so famous as an essayist since his advent to the
United. Our author here explodes conclusively a large body of bombastic
legend which false textbooks have inflicted upon successive generations
of innocent American youth. We are shown beyond a doubt that the
Revolution of 1776 was no such one-sided affair as the petty political
"historians" would have us believe, and that our Mother Country indeed
had a strong case before the bar of International justice. It is an
article which makes us doubly proud of our racial and cultural

"Sweet Frailty," a poem by Mary Henrietta Lehr, contains all those
elements of charm, delicacy, and ingenuity which mark its author as one
of amateurdom's most cultivated and gifted members.

Of the editorial column modesty forbids us to speak, but we hope the
amateur public may be duly charitable with our shortcomings as therein

       *       *       *       *       *

=The Inspiration= for April is a "Tribute Number," dedicated to the
amateur journalists of Great Britain and Canada who have devoted their
lives and fortunes to the cause of civilisation and the Empire. With so
wonderfully inspiring a subject, it is small wonder that the magazine
lives gloriously up to its name. Miss von der Heide shows extreme skill
and sympathy in the editorship of the publication, and in the verses
which she contributes; proving herself worthy indeed of the high place
she has occupied in amateurdom for so many years.

"The Lion's Brood," by Henry Clapham McGavack, exhibits the versatility
of this brilliant writer; for though he is by preference a concise
essayist, he here rises to great heights in the domain of rhetorical
panegyric. His stirring encomium is ingeniously continued by Mr. William
T. Harrington, who adds many merited words of praise for our kindred
across the seas. The present critic's lines are as full of heartfelt
love of England as they are wanting in merit; while the lines of Olive
G. Owen possess both deep fervour and conspicuous merit. Mrs. Griffith's
tribute, "He Conquers who Endures," breathes out the true spirit of the
American nation today, anticipating the official action of a cautious
and slow-moving government. The "Open Letters" of Messrs. Macauley,
Stokes and Martin, speak the brave spirit of the age, and make us the
more sharply regretful of our own rejection for military service.
"Treasure," by Miss von der Heide, is an appealing bit of sentiment,
whose interest is timely indeed.

Viewed as a whole, =The Inspiration= takes first rank amongst the
amateur papers published since March.

       *       *       *       *       *

=The Little Budget= for May opens with Paul J. Campbell's meritorious
poem entitled "Signals." Mr. Campbell, always facile in metre, exhibits
increasing power in the realm of poetical imagination, and is entitled
to a substantial place on the slopes of Parnassus. A misprint in the
present version of "Signals" gives =look= when =looked= should appear.

"The Adventures of 'Dido' Plum," by Joseph Parks, is a pleasing story of
military life by one who is himself a soldier. Mr. Parks' brief sketches
form a pleasing feature of the contemporary amateur press, being
distinguished by a naturalness which intensifies their interest as
literal transcripts of the army atmosphere. "Road Song," a tuneful lyric
by Eleanor J. Barnhart, marks the first appearance of that brilliant
author as a poet. Her inexperience in this art, however, is not at all
to be suspected from this fervent and finished composition; which might
well do credit to some of our veteran bards. "Impulse," by Norah Sloane
Stanley, is described as "A Parisian Fragment," and exhibits much
ingenuity in spirit and atmosphere. "Keep a Cheerful Countenance," by
Eugene B. Kuntz, is a poem of great merit despite the doubtful rhyme of
=way= and =quality= in the last stanza. Miss Mappin, in her article on
Milton, displays her ample knowledge of literary history, and even more
than her customary fluency. "The Contented Robin," a poem by Margaret
Mahon, is apt, pleasing and harmonious; whilst Miss Trafford's brief
jingle is quaint and clever. "Spring," by Randolph Trafford (aetat 10)
is full of the exuberant vigour of youth, and speaks well for the future
of this bright young bard.

       *       *       *       *       *

=The Little Budget= for June gains distinction from Henry Clapham
McGavack's brilliant essay on American Anglophobia, entitled "Blood is
not Thicker Than Water." This acute analysis of anti-British sentiment
among certain classes in the States reveals a lamentable result of
bigotry and historical ignorance; which may, we hope, be cured by the
new bonds of alliance betwixt the Old and the New Englands. As Mr.
McGavack well demonstrates, most of our Anglophobia is manufactured by
the alleged "historians" who poison the minds of the young through
mendacious textbooks. This species of false teaching, an evil potently
fostered by the Fenians and Sinn Feiners who lurk serpent-like in our
midst, is one which cannot too soon be eradicated; for the cultural
identity and moral unity of the States and the Empire make such sources
of unintelligent prejudice increasingly nauseous and detrimental. We may
add that the textbook treatment of our War between the States is almost
equally unfair, the Northern cause being ridiculously exalted above the
brave and incredibly high-minded attitude of the Confederacy.

Another delightful prose contribution is "Back to Blighty," by Joseph
Parks, a vivid vignette of one phase of military life. "Trinidad and its
Forests," by F. E. M. Hercules, is marked by its author's customary ease
of expression and felicity of diction; presenting many facts of general
interest. The poetry in this issue includes work from the pens of J. E.
Hoag, H. P. Lovecraft, Rev. Eugene B. Kuntz, Beryl Mappin, and the
Editor. Dr. Kuntz's lines to the memory of Phillips Gamwell are animated
with a nobility which well befits their subject, though the rhyme of
=day= and =melody= is not strictly correct. Few amateur poets are able
to achieve the sonorous dignity which Dr. Kuntz imparts to his flowing
Alexandrines, or to select with equal appropriateness the vivid and
musical words that so irresistibly delight the ear and impress the
imagination. Miss Mappin's metrical effort, entitled "Only a Thought,"
betrays some of the crudities of youth; including the attempted rhyme of
=alone= and =home=. The metre, phraseology, and plan of rhyming demand
extensive revision, the following being a possible amended version of
the piece:

    As sad and alone in a distant land
      I sat by the dismal shore,
    My chin laid pensively in my hand,
      And my dreams all of home once more;
    I watch'd and mus'd o'er the sunless sea,
      And study'd the cruel foam;
    For the waves bore an exile's woe to me,
      From my kindred forc'd to roam.

    But lo! floating light upon the wind
      And murm'ing o'er ocean crest,
    Come the thoughts of those I left behind,
      Bringing comfort and love and rest.
    Only a word--aye, only a thought!
      Each speeds like a heav'n-sent dart;
    Who can measure the gladness and aid they've brought--
      These thoughts--to the breaking heart?

The first line of the original, "=Far away= in a =distant= land," is
lamentably pleonastic; whilst the identity or intended identity of the
second and fourth rhymes is undesirable. In a verse of this type, it is
not well to repeat a rhyme immediately. In the second stanza the first
and third lines and the fifth and seventh are unrhymed, a variation from
the original design which is not sanctioned by custom. Once a poet
decides on his metre and plan of rhyme, he should maintain them
unchanged throughout the poem. In the foregoing revised version, all
these defects have been remedied. Miss Trafford's poem, "After a Dream,"
shows much promise both technically and in the thought. The final line
of the first stanza, "And the joy it contains is much," is very weak;
and should be changed to read: "And of joy it contains so much." In
writing the definite article, Miss Trafford mistakenly uses the
contracted form =th'= when full syllabic value is to be given. This
contraction is employed only when the article is metrically placed as a
proclitic before another word, and is thereby shorn of its separate
pronunciation as follows:

    =Th' ambitious= bard a nobler theme essays.

The illustrated bit of humor by George William Stokes deserves mention
as presenting one of the cleverest drawings to appear lately in the
amateur press. It is difficult to decide in which domain Mr. Stokes
shines the more brightly, literature or pictorial art. His heading for
=The Little Budget= is a masterpiece of its kind.

       *       *       *       *       *

=The Pippin= for May brings once more to our notice amateurdom's
foremost high-school club, the Appleton aggregation, whose existence is
due to Mr. Maurice W. Moe's untiring efforts. "Doings of the Pippins,"
by Joseph Harriman, is a terse and informing chronicle of recent
activity. "Once Upon a Time," by Florence A. Miller, is a bit of
humorous verse whose metre might be improved by the use of greater care.
"Some Cloth!," by John Ingold, is an exceedingly clever piece of wit;
which, though avowedly Irish, bears the characteristic hall-mark of
native American humor. The delightful exaggerations recall some of the
brightest spots in American light literature. "Speed," by Matilda
Harriman, is an interesting sketch recalling Poe's "Mellonta Tauta," in
its imaginative flights. "From Over the Threshold," by Ruth Ryan, shows
much promise in the realm of fiction. "Once an Amateur, Always an
Amateur" is one of those rare bits of prose with which our distinguished
Critical member, Mr. Moe, favours us. We are proud of the unshaken
amateur allegiance of so brilliant a personality, and trust that some
day he may realise his dream of "an attic or basement printshop." "The
Press Club," by Ruth Schumaker, is a pleasing sketch, as is also Miss
Kelly's "Our Club and the United." We trust that the Appleton Club may
safely weather the hard times of which Miss Kelly complains.

       *       *       *       *       *

THE UNITED AMATEUR for May contains a captivating and graceful sketch by
W. Edwin Gibson, entitled "Beauty." Mr. Gibson is one of our younger
members who bids fair to become prominent in the coming amateur
generation. Of the month's poetry, we may mention with particular
commendation Miss von der Heide's "Worship," though through some error,
possibly typographical, the final line of the second stanza seems to
lack two syllables. "When Dreams Come True," by Kathleen Foster Smith,
is likewise of more than common merit, though the word =hear= in the
second line of the second stanza is probably a misprint for =heard=.
"Smile," by O. M. Blood, is ingenious though scarcely novel. Its chief
defects are inequalities in the lines, which care should be able to
correct. The first line contains two superfluous syllables, while the
fourth line contains one too many. The ninth line of the final section
contains two syllables too many, as do the tenth and eleventh lines as
well. The rhyme of =appear= and =disappear= is incorrect, since
syllables in rhyme should be merely similar--not the same. Mr. Blood
requires much practice in poetry, but undoubtedly possesses the germ of
success. "To the U. A. P. A.," by Matthew Hilson, is acceptable in
construction and delightful in sentiment, laying strata on the new
Anglo-American unity--the one redeeming feature of the present
international crisis. THE UNITED AMATEUR closes with a quotation from
Euripides, which we will not attempt to review here, since the author
has been receiving critical attention from far abler men for many

                                                  H. P. LOVECRAFT,


Maurice W. Moe, Chief of our Department of Private Criticism, is trying
a novel experiment this summer for the sake of his health. He has
undertaken a labourer's work on one of the new buildings of Lawrence
College, lifting planks, shovelling mud, and wheeling bags of cement
like a seasoned workingman. While painful at first, the regimen is
proving actually beneficial, and Mr. Moe is proud of the physical
prowess he is beginning to exhibit. One of our amateur poetasters
recently perpetrated the following four lines on the unusual occurrence
of a learned instructor working manually upon a college building:

                     To M. W. M.

    Behold the labourer, who builds the walls
    That soon shall shine as Learning's sacred halls;
    A man so apt at ev'ry art and trade,
    He well might govern what his hands have made!

                     UNITED AMATEUR_



A Reminiscence of Dr. Samuel Johnson

Humphry Littlewit, Esq.

The Privilege of Reminiscence, however rambling or tiresome, is one
generally allow'd to the very aged; indeed, 'tis frequently by means of
such Recollections that the obscure occurrences of History, and the
lesser Anecdotes of the Great, are transmitted to Posterity.

Tho' many of my readers have at times observ'd and remark'd a Sort of
antique Flow in my Stile of Writing, it hath pleased me to pass amongst
the Members of this Generation as a young Man, giving out the Fiction
that I was born in 1890, in =America=. I am now, however, resolv'd to
unburthen myself of a secret which I have hitherto kept thro' Dread of
Incredulity; and to impart to the Publick a true knowledge of my long
years, in order to gratifie their taste for authentick Information of an
Age with whose famous Personages I was on familiar Terms. Be it then
known that I was born on the family Estate in =Devonshire=, of the 10th
day of August, 1690, (or in the new =Gregorian= Stile of Reckoning, the
20th of August) being therefore now in my 228th year. Coming early to
=London=, I saw as a Child many of the celebrated Men of King
=William's= Reign, including the lamented Mr. =Dryden=, who sat much at
the Tables of =Will's= Coffee-House. With Mr. =Addison= and Dr. =Swift=
I later became very well acquainted, and was an even more familiar
Friend to Mr. =Pope=, whom I knew and respected till the Day of his
Death. But since it is of my more recent Associate, the late Dr.
=Johnson=, that I am at this time desir'd to write; I will pass over my
Youth for the present.

I had first Knowledge of the Doctor in May of the year 1738, tho' I did
not at that Time meet him. Mr. =Pope= had just compleated his Epilogue
to his Satires, (the Piece beginning: "Not twice a Twelvemonth you
appear in Print.") and had arrang'd for its Publication. On the very Day
it appear'd, there was also publish'd a Satire in Imitation of
=Juvenal=, entituled "=London=," by the then unknown =Johnson=; and this
so struck the Town, that many Gentlemen of Taste declared, it was the
Work of a greater Poet than Mr. =Pope=. Notwithstanding what some
Detractors have said of Mr. =Pope's= petty Jealousy, he gave the Verses
of his new Rival no small Praise; and having learnt thro' Mr.
=Richardson= who the Poet was, told me, "that Mr. =Johnson= wou'd soon
be =deterre=."

I had no personal Acquaintances with the Doctor till 1763, when I was
presented to him at the =Mitre= Tavern by Mr. =James Boswell=, a young
=Scotchman= of excellent Family and great Learning, but small Wit, whose
metrical Effusions I had sometimes revis'd.

Dr. =Johnson=, as I beheld him, was a full, pursy Man, very ill drest,
and of slovenly Aspect. I recall him to have worn a bushy Bob-Wig,
untyed and without Powder, and much too small for his Head. His Cloaths
were of rusty brown, much wrinkled, and with more than one Button
missing. His Face, too full to be handsom, was likewise marred by the
Effects of some scrofulous Disorder; and his Head was continually
rolling about in a sort of convulsive way. Of this Infirmity, indeed, I
had known before; having heard of it from Mr. =Pope=, who took the
Trouble to make particular Inquiries.

Being nearly seventy-three, full nineteen Years older than Dr.
=Johnson=, (I say Doctor, tho' his Degree came not till two Years
afterward) I naturally expected him to have some Regard for my Age; and
was therefore not in that Fear of him, which others confess'd. On my
asking him what he thought of my favourable Notice of his Dictionary in
=The Londoner=, my periodical Paper, he said: "Sir, I possess no
Recollection of having perus'd your Paper, and have not a great Interest
in the Opinions of the less thoughtful Part of Mankind." Being more than
a little piqued at the Incivility of one whose Celebrity made me
solicitous of his Approbation, I ventur'd to retaliate in kind, and told
him, I was surpris'd that a Man of Sense shou'd judge the Thoughtfulness
of one whose Productions he admitted never having read. "Why, Sir,"
reply'd =Johnson=, "I do not require to become familiar with a Man's
Writings in order to estimate the Superficiality of his Attainments,
when he plainly shews it by his Eagerness to mention his own Productions
in the first Question he puts to me." Having thus become Friends, we
convers'd on many Matters. When, to agree with him, I said I was
distrustful of the Authenticity of =Ossian's= Poems, Mr. =Johnson= said:
"That, Sir, does not do your Understanding particular Credit; for what
all the Town is sensible of, is no great Discovery for a =Grub-Street=
Critick to make. You might as well say, you have a strong Suspicion that
=Milton= wrote 'Paradise Lost!'"

I thereafter saw =Johnson= very frequently, most often at Meetings of
THE LITERARY CLUB, which was founded the next Year by the Doctor,
together with Mr. =Burke=, the parliamentary Orator, Mr. =Beauclerk=, a
Gentleman of Fashion, Mr. =Langton=, a pious Man and Captain of Militia,
Sir =J. Reynolds=, the widely known Painter, Dr. =Goldsmith=, the Prose
and poetick Writer, Dr. =Nugent=, father-in-law to Mr. =Burke=, Sir
=John Hawkins=, Mr. =Anthony Chamier=, and my self. We assembled
generally at seven o'clock of an Evening, once a Week, at the
=Turk's-Head=, in =Gerrard-Street=, =Soho=, till that Tavern was sold
and made into a private Dwelling; after which Event we mov'd our
Gatherings successively to =Prince's= in =Sackville-Street=, =Le
Tellier's= in =Dover-Street=, and =Parsloe's= and the =Thatched House=
in =St. James's-Street=. In these Meetings we preserv'd a remarkable
Degree of Amity and Tranquillity, which contrasts very favourably with
some of the Dissensions and Disruptions I observe in the literary and
amateur Press Associations of today. This Tranquillity was the more
remarkable, because we had amongst us Gentlemen of very opposed
Opinions. Dr. =Johnson= and I, as well as many others, were high Tories;
whilst Mr. =Burke= was a Whig, and against the =American= War, many of
his Speeches on that Subject having been widely publish'd. The least
congenial Member was one of the Founders, Sir =John Hawkins=, who hath
since written many misrepresentations of our Society. Sir =John=, an
eccentrick Fellow, once declin'd to pay his part of the Reckoning for
Supper, because 'twas his Custom at Home to eat no Supper. Later he
insulted Mr. =Burke= in so intolerable a Manner, that we all took Pains
to shew our Disapproval; after which Incident he came no more to our
Meetings. However, he never openly fell out with the Doctor, and was the
Executor of his Will; tho' Mr. =Boswell= and others have Reason to
question the genuineness of his Attachment. Other and later Members of
the CLUB were Mr. =David Garrick=, the Actor and early Friend of Dr.
=Johnson=, Messieurs =Tho.= and =Jos. Warton=, Dr. =Adam Smith=, Dr.
=Percy=, Author of the "Reliques," Mr. =Edw. Gibbon=, the Historian, Dr.
=Burney=, the Musician, Mr. =Malone=, the Critick, and Mr. =Boswell=.
Mr. =Garrick= obtain'd Admittance only with Difficulty; for the Doctor,
notwithstanding his great Friendship, was for ever affecting to decry
the Stage and all Things connected with it. =Johnson=, indeed, had a
most singular Habit of speaking for =Davy= when others were against him,
and of arguing against him, when others were for him. I have no Doubt
but that he sincerely lov'd Mr. =Garrick=, for he never alluded to him
as he did to =Foote=, who was a very coarse Fellow despite his comick
Genius. Mr. =Gibbon= was none too well lik'd, for he had an odious
sneering Way which offended even those of us who most admir'd his
historical Productions. Mr. =Goldsmith=, a little Man very vain of his
Dress and very deficient in Brilliancy of Conversation, was my
particular Favourite; since I was equally unable to shine in the
Discourse. He was vastly jealous of Dr. =Johnson=, tho' none the less
liking and respecting him. I remember that once a Foreigner, a =German=,
I think, was in our Company; and that whilst =Goldsmith= was speaking,
he observ'd the Doctor preparing to utter something. Unconsciously
looking upon =Goldsmith= as a meer Encumbrance when compar'd to the
greater Man, the Foreigner bluntly interrupted him and incurr'd his
lasting Hostility by crying, "Hush, Toctor =Shonson= iss going to

In this luminous Company I was tolerated more because of my Years than
for my Wit or Learning; being no Match at all for the rest. My
Friendship for the celebrated Monsieur =Voltaire= was ever a Cause of
Annoyance to the Doctor; who was deeply orthodox, and who us'd to say of
the =French= Philosopher: "Vir est acerrimi Ingenii et paucarum

Mr. =Boswell=, a little teazing Fellow whom I had known for some Time
previously, us'd to make Sport of my aukward Manners and old-fashion'd
Wig and Cloaths. Once coming in a little the worse for Wine (to which he
was addicted) he endeavour'd to lampoon me by means of an Impromptu in
verse, writ on the Surface of the Table; but lacking the Aid he usually
had in his Composition, he made a bad grammatical Blunder. I told him,
he shou'd not try to pasquinade the Source of his Poesy. At another Time
=Bozzy= (as we us'd to call him) complain'd of my Harshness toward new
Writers in the Articles I prepar'd for The Monthly Review. He said, I
push'd every Aspirant off the Slopes of Parnassus. "Sir," I reply'd,
"you are mistaken. They who lose their Hold do so from their own Want of
Strength; but desiring to conceal their Weakness, they attribute the
absence of Success to the first Critick that mentions them." I am glad
to recall that Dr. =Johnson= upheld me in this Matter.

Dr. =Johnson= was second to no Man in the Pains he took to revise the
bad Verses of others; indeed, 'tis said that in the book of poor blind
old Mrs. =Williams=, there are scarce two lines which are not the
Doctor's. At one Time =Johnson= recited to me some lines by a Servant to
the Duke of =Leeds=, which had so amus'd him, that he had got them by
Heart. They are on the Duke's Wedding, and so much resemble in Quality
the Work of other and more recent poetick Dunces, that I cannot forbear
copying them:

    "When the Duke of =Leeds= shall marry'd be
    To a fine young Lady of high Quality
    How happy will that Gentlewoman be
    In his Grace of =Leeds'= good Company."

I ask'd the Doctor, if he had ever try'd making Sense of this Piece; and
upon his saying he had not, I amus'd myself with the following Amendment
of it:

    When Gallant LEEDS auspiciously shall wed
    The virtuous Fair, of antient Lineage bred,
    How must the Maid rejoice with conscious Pride
    To win so great an Husband to her Side!

On shewing this to Dr. =Johnson=, he said, "Sir, you have straightened
out the Feet, but you have put neither Wit nor Poetry into the Lines."

It wou'd afford me Gratification to tell more of my Experiences with Dr.
=Johnson= and his circle of Wits; but I am an old Man, and easily
fatigued. I seem to ramble along without much Logick or Continuity when
I endeavour to recall the Past; and fear I light upon but few Incidents
which others have not before discuss'd. Shou'd my present Recollections
meet with Favour, I might later set down some further Anecdotes of old
Times of which I am the only Survivor. I recall many Things of =Sam
Johnson= and his Club, having kept up my Membership in the Latter long
after the Doctor's Death, at which I sincerely mourn'd. I remember how
=John Burgoyne=, Esq., the General, whose Dramatick and Poetical Works
were printed after his Death, was blackballed by three Votes; probably
because of his unfortunate Defeat in the =American= War, at =Saratoga=.
Poor =John=! His Son fared better, I think, and was made a Baronet. But
I am very tired. I am old, very old; it is Time for my Afternoon Nap.


=The Dabbler=, for September, in the entire unexpectedness and splendor
of its appearance, must be counted as one of the most effective of
recent rebukes to the pessimists. There have been several such rebukes,
and those who had already prepared themselves for another barren year in
amateur journalism are beginning to realize that even history cannot be
relied upon to repeat itself indefinitely. =The Dabbler= is issued by
H. L. Lindquist of Chicago, and contains 16 pages, exclusive of the
covers. The initial letters and a few incidental adornments are printed
in green, and the title-page, with its harmonious arrangement of type
and decoration, is a delight to the eye. The typography, throughout, is
almost flawless, and the contents, in general, are worthy of the care
with which they have been presented to the reader. Paul J. Campbell, in
his article, "What Does Amateur Journalism Mean to You?" once again
defines the peculiar benefits and pleasures to be derived from our
hobby, and warns away all those who come to it because of an idle
curiosity, or a vain desire for self-glorification, or any motive other
than a true impulse toward mental development and literary culture. "A
Critical Review," by Frank C. Reighter, is devoted to the July
=Brooklynite=, and subjects that publication to a well-nigh exhaustive
analysis and criticism. The article is both interesting and instructive
and reveals Mr. Reighter as an acute and capable critic. The verses with
which he concludes his remarks are particularly clever and melodious,
and furnish an excellent example of light verse when it is written by
one possessing a natural aptitude for that form of expression. Jennie M.
Kendall, in her fragment, "The One Thing Needful," makes a modern
business woman give her opinion of idle wives, which she does in
forceful, although not always accurate, English. "U. A. P. A. Convention
Echoes," by Litta Voelchert; "The Old-Timer's Comeback," by L. J. Cohen;
and "The Only Hope of A. J.," by W. E. Mellinger, consist of
reminiscence, assurance and advice, from three well-known amateur
journalists. The articles were obviously written somewhat hastily but
are, nevertheless, very interesting and suggestive. H. L. Lindquist, in
"At It Again," tells how he severed his connection with amateur
journalism six years ago--being occupied with several professional
ventures--only to find that the old passion would not die and finally
compelled him to return to his early love. Those who have seen the
result of Mr. Lindquist's acquiescence in his Fate will gain some idea
of what his activity must have meant in other days.

       *       *       *       *       *

=The Dabbler=, for October, follows hard upon its predecessor and, in
all essentials, is of equal merit. "Hiking in the Rocky Mountain
National Park," by Louis H. Kerber, Jr., is a well-written account of a
tour through some of America's most wonderful scenery, and reflects
great credit on Mr. Kerber's powers of observation. "Day-Dreams," by
Frank C. Reighter, is a didactic poem and so labors under an initial
handicap in attempting to hold the attention of the reader. The
technique of the poet, however, is deserving of praise, and if a fault
must be pointed out, it is in the forced pronunciation of the word
"idea" in the last line, which seems too cheap a device to appear in
poetry, even when, as in the present case, it is used intentionally.
"Dominion Day in Winnipeg," by W. B. Stoddard, is an account of a
patriotic celebration in Canada and was evidently witnessed by the
writer on his recent--and somewhat protracted--travels. "Ecstasy," a
poem, by Eleanor J. Barnhart, begins rather promisingly but we do not
proceed very far before detecting various crudities of craftsmanship.
Lines like the following:

    "The changing fire splendor of sky opals, rare,"


    "Like sea gulls swift soaring in tireless sky flight,"

and, once again,

    "Till star gleams bright glittering high in mid-sky,"

contain the germ of true poetry, but when we read them we are aware not
only of a harsh and difficult combination of consonants but also of an
entire absence of metrical swing and grace. In fact, we get an
impression from the above lines that an excessive number of important
words have been crowded hap-hazard upon a metrical pattern which was not
intended to hold so many, and it is not surprising that the fabric
should show signs of being subjected to a severe strain. But care and
practise may yet awaken that poet's instinct within Miss Barnhart which
will enable her to detect and reject, instantly, all such blemishes in
what should be the rounded beauty of her song.

Thomas Curtis Clark is indeed a poet of "Ring and Swing," as an
editorial note to his poems declares him to be. "The Dawn of Liberty"
and "America's Men" must be read in their entirety to be appreciated,
but a quotation from the latter poem may not be amiss.

    We are America's men,
      Brave, dauntless and true;
    We are America's men,
      Ready to dare and do;
    Ready to wield the sword with might,
    Ready the tyrant's brow to smite--
    And ready to sheath the sword--for Right!
      We are America's Men.

The unsigned story entitled, "The Man Out of Work," is very brief, but
apparently not the effort of a tyro. It would probably hold the
attention even if it were much longer and we are almost inclined to
regret its extreme abruptness. Nevertheless, it is complete as it stands
and an artistic whole. "Still At It," by Mr. Lindquist, gives us
interesting information regarding the editor and also some sound advice
as to finding congenial employment. Mr. Lindquist seems to be a
philosopher whose practise will bear comparison with his theory.

       *       *       *       *       *

=The Olympian= for October, awakens much of the old-time thrill with
which amateurs were wont to receive the once frequent issues of that
justly known and esteemed publication. The present number is not so
ambitious in some respects as many of its predecessors, but it must be
said that within a somewhat smaller scope it accomplishes quite as much
as a more pretentious issue could hope to do. Nor is the latest
=Olympian= at all in need of any apologies for shortcomings in the way
of size, appearance, or general literary quality. Indeed, publications
that consist of 12 pages and cover are always certain of a hearty
welcome, while the present production of Mr. and Mrs. Cole has
qualifications in addition to those just mentioned that recommend it
warmly to all readers. The poem, "Motherhood," by Ethelwyn Dithridge is
a truly noble and inspired effort. Amateur journalism is fortunate to
number a poet of Miss Dithridge's attainments in its ranks. In
"Retrospect and Prospect," Edward H. Cole sums up the three years of
amateur history which have just passed and comes to the conclusion that
"the best hope for amateur journalism in these days of stress and
strain ... is in the peaceful co-operation of the surviving associations
in a campaign of expansion of a practicable nature." "Here and Now," by
Helene Hoffman Cole, consists of suggestions for the practical
co-operation proposed by Mr. Cole, and should be a stimulus to increased
activity in some positive form among present-day amateurs. "The
Reviewers' Club" is quite as authoritative and sound in its criticisms
as in the past and must always be considered one of the most delightful
and instructive features of =The Olympian=.

       *       *       *       *       *

The National Amateur Press Association could hardly inaugurate a year of
promised activity more auspiciously than it has by the sterling issue of
its president's =Sprite=. It is just about everything that one could ask
for in amateur journalism. The modest grey of the cover, the excellence
of the paper stock, the flawlessness of the typography, the exquisite
taste with which the component parts are blended--all these strike the
eye at the first glance. When one comes to read the contents, he finds
each contribution well worth the setting. For a leading article we have
something that is well nigh unique in literature, either amateur or
professional, an attempted reconstruction of a scene supposedly excised
from "King Lear." This is so unusual, in fact, that it might well be
called a "stunt," but certainly it is a successful stunt. In the not
overly long scene presented, which pictures the ruthless hanging of
Cordelia and the Fool before the eyes of the aged Lear, we can discern
no quality that is not strictly Shakespearian. The language has been
purged of every trace of modernism and flows with that semi-solemn,
archaic, Elizabethan cadence that almost makes it hard to believe that
it was written in this century. But all this might be done without
achieving the supreme Shakespearian touch. The triumph of the scene is
that the character delineation is carried on with such a mastery of its
intricacies that this scene might be interpolated in a new edition of
the play and fool the higher critics of the future. The author, Samuel
Loveman, is an amateur of former days who celebrates his return to the
hobby with this feat so characteristic of his peculiar genius. The
United has its Lovecraft, a belated Georgian who says he is nowhere so
much at home today as he would be in the coffee-houses of Pope or
Johnson. The National once more after a lapse of years has its Loveman,
a belated Elizabethan who could have walked into the Mermaid Tavern and
proved a congenial soul to Kit Marlowe and friend Will. The United
welcomes him back.

Harry Martin, the editor, follows with an essay on the elements of the
classic Greek tragedy to be found in "King Lear," which in depth, tone,
and general literary quality are strongly reminiscent of the best work
that appears in the =Atlantic Monthly=. As an essay it is perfect in
form, its thesis is stated clearly and developed with forceful logic,
and the wealth of material brought to bear upon the subject displays a
knowledge of Shakespeare and the classic drama worthy of Truman Spencer,
of beloved amateur memory.

The editorial section is only to be criticized in that Mr. Martin has
cut us off with so few of his readable "Views Martinique," but we shall
live in hopes of another excellent =Sprite= with a longer editorial
department. George Cribbs' "History" is just a little poem used for a
filler, but this must not be taken in derogation, for it is filler
chosen with the good taste that characterizes the choice of all the
other contributions. In spite of its simplicity and its brevity, it
plays with the deft touch of mastery on that chord of pathos that always
vibrates to the thought of Time's ceaseless and inevitable surge. From
every point of view the whole journal is a symphony of excellence.

       *       *       *       *       *

=The Yerma=, for October, is edited by John H. D. Smith of Orondo,
Washington, and, aside from the fact that it is an attractive and
well-printed publication, may be considered as being rather in the
nature of a promise of future achievement. The dedicatory verses "To the
Yerma," by Alice M. Hamlet are fairly good so far as rhyme and metre are
concerned. They run smoothly and are really graceful in sentiment. They
contain one or two grammatical inversions, however, such as

    "I would a little jingle write,"


    "I'd love to be a poet great,"

which have no more right to appear in verse than in prose. Then, too,
they betray an occasional inelegance of expression like the following:

    "I find that I am stuck."

But Miss Hamlet should by all means persist in her versifying, since
there can be no doubt that she owns an instinctive grasp of the basic
laws of rhyme and rhythm. If she will read and study the lighter efforts
to be found in any standard anthology of poetry and then, with such
models ever before her, strive sincerely to overcome her present defects
by unremitting practise, Miss Hamlet may yet become a truly clever and
accomplished versifier. "The Reform Spirit--Its Mission," by P. A.
Spain, M. D., is an exceedingly able and thought provoking essay. It is
to be hoped that in future issues Mr. Smith will give us an inkling of
his own ideas on various subjects. The chief defect in =The Yerma= is
the entire absence of editorial comment.




The fourth month of the United's official year opens with the
organization still nearer completion; Mrs. Helene Hoffman Cole, former
President and thoroughly active and capable amateur, having accepted
appointment as Supervisor of Amendments. The Fourth Vice-Presidency has
been accepted by Alfred Galpin, Jr., 779 Kimball St., Appleton,

The Official Editor is to be commended for the excellence of the
September =United Amateur=, as is also the printer, Mr. W. Paul Cook.
The Association will be gratified to hear that Mr. Cook has accepted the
position of Official Publisher for the year; but the members must
remember that only by their liberality in replenishing the Official
Organ Fund, can regular issuance be ensured.

The 1916-1917 Year-Book of the Association, having been completed by the
Committee, is now undergoing critical inspection and condensation by the
expert judgment of Messrs. Paul J. Campbell and Edward F. Daas. Here
again we appeal to the generosity of the members, especially the veteran
members, to make possible the publication in full of this epitome of
amateur history. Unless the Year-Book Fund is materially swelled, the
volume cannot possibly be printed in its unabridged form of sixty-three
closely typed manuscript pages.

The amateur press is now showing signs of a gradual recovery from the
late period of minimum activity. Mr. Martin's remarkable production,
=The Sprite=, Mr. Lindquist's two numbers of =The Dabbler=, Mr. and Mrs.
Cole's welcome =Olympian=, Mr. Cook's wonderfully ample =Vagrant=, and
Mr. John H. D. Smith's small but enterprising =Yerma=, all attest the
reality of this awakening. Within the next few months many more papers
are to be expected; including an excellent one from Miss Lehr, a
scholarly =Piper= from Mr. Kleiner, a brilliant first venture, =The
Arcadian=, from Mrs. Jordan, and both a =Vagrant= and a =Monadnock= from
Mr. Cook. Mr. Cook makes a truly philanthropic offer to print small
papers at reasonable rates, and it is to be hoped that a large number of
members will avail themselves of it, communicating with Mr. Cook
regarding particulars. His address is 451 Main St., Athol, Mass.

Recruiting proceeds steadily if not with meteoric rapidity, some
excellent material having been obtained since the beginning of the
year's campaign. The most serious defect in our system is the lack of a
general welcome shown the new members, particularly as regards the
distribution of papers. One of our most important recruits of last July,
now a responsible officer, declares he has seen but a fraction of the
papers issued since his entrance; a fact indicating a censurable but
easily remediable condition. Let us impress it upon ourselves, that if
we would do our full share toward maintaining the Association and its
literary life, we must see that all our respective publications reach
=every= member new or old. A considerable part of our yearly losses in
membership are undoubtedly due to the indifferent reception which so
many gifted newcomers receive.

The general signs of the times are bright and encouraging. A renascent
amateur press, a closer co-operation between members, an influx of
interested recruits, and an improved state of relations with our
contemporaries, are but a few of the good omens which promise to make
the coming year a pleasing and profitable one.

                                           H. P. LOVECRAFT, President.
 October 28, 1917.





The dawn of the new year discovers the United in what may, considering
the general condition of the times, be called a very enviable position.
With a full complement of officers, and with the recruiting machinery
fairly under way, our course seems clear and our voyage propitious.

The November Official Organ deserves praise of the highest sort; and
will remain as a lasting monument to the editorial ability of Miss
McGeoch and the mechanical good taste of Mr. Cook. It has set a standard
beneath which it should not fall, but to maintain which a well-supplied
Official Organ Fund is absolutely necessary. If each member of the
Association would send a dollar, or even less, to Custodian McGeoch,
this Fund might be certain of continuance at a level which would ensure
a large and regularly published UNITED AMATEUR.

The publication of lists of new and prospective members should arouse
every amateur to recruiting activity, and cause each newcomer to receive
a goodly number of letters, papers, and postcards. It would be well if
the line of demarcation between Recruiting Committees and the general
amateur public were not so sharply drawn; for whilst it is the duty of
the official recruiter to approach these new names, any other members
confer no less a favour on the United by doing so unofficially. We must
remedy the condition which permits able writers to join and pass out of
the Association almost without a realization of the fact of their
membership. How few of these gifted amateurs who entered in 1915-1916
are now with us!

Publishing activity is strikingly exemplified by the appearance of
=Spindrift=, a regularly issued monthly from the able pen of Sub-Lieut.
Ernest Lionel McKeag of the Royal Navy. When a busy naval officer in
active service can edit so excellent a magazine as this, no civilian
should complain that the present war has made amateur journalism an
impossibility! The number of papers expected in the near future has been
increased by a plan of the Second Vice-President to unite the members of
the Recruiting Committee in a co-operative editorial venture. It is to
be hoped that this enterprise may succeed as well as similar papers
conducted during former administrations. Of great interest to the
literary element will be Mr. Cook's contemplated volume of laureate
poetry, containing the winning pieces of all our competitions from the
establishment of Laureateships to the present time.

The Association extends its heartiest congratulations, individually and
collectively, to ex-Pres. Campbell and Treasurer Barnhart, who were most
auspiciously joined in wedlock on Thanksgiving Day. Its heartfelt
sympathy is transmitted to relatives of the late Rev. W. S. Harrison,
whose death on December 3d left a vacancy in the ranks of stately and
spiritual poets which cannot be filled.

A final word of commendation should be given to those more than generous
teachers, professors, and scholars who are making "The Reading Table" so
pleasing and successful a feature of the United's literary life. The
idea, originated by Miss McGeoch, has been ably developed by Messrs. Moe
and Lowrey, and is likely to redeem many of the promises of real
progress which have pervaded the Association during the past few years.

                                           H. P. LOVECRAFT, President.
 January 2, 1918.





As the second half of the official year progresses, we behold the United
in excellent condition, though not marked by as great a degree of
activity as might be desired. The official organ faithfully maintains
its phenomenally high standard, the January issue indeed eclipsing all
precedents; but a larger number of other papers must be published, if we
are to make the present term as memorable quantitatively as it is
qualitatively. An excellent example is set by Mrs. Jordan, whose newly
established =Eurus= comes so opportunely. May this publication prove
permanent, and of frequent appearance! Besides this, we are indebted to
Miss Trafford, Lieut. McKeag, and Mr. Martin for a =Little Budget=,
=Spindrift=, and =Sprite=, respectively. Several other papers are
reported in press, including what promises to be a very remarkable

In order to increase the publishing activity of the Association, the
administration will endeavour to arrange for the publication of one or
more co-operative papers. Any United member able to contribute $1.50 or
more to such an enterprise should communicate with the undersigned, who
will attend to the details of issuance if a sufficient number of
contributing editors can be obtained. $1.50 will pay for one page, 7◊10,
and each contributor is at liberty to take as many pages as he desires
at that rate. Contributors may utilise their space according to their
own wishes, and all will be equally credited with editorship. This plan,
successfully practiced four years ago, should enable many hitherto
silent members to appear in the editorial field to great advantage, in a
journal whose contents and appearance will alike be creditable.

The comparative scarcity of entries makes imperative a second warning
regarding the new conditions in the Laureateship department. Ten persons
must compete in any class before an award in that particular division
can be granted, and at present no class contains an adequate variety of
entries. Again it is urged that the members lose no time in submitting
their printed literary productions to Mr. Hoag for entry.

A careful study of the four proposed constitutional amendments is
necessary to ensure intelligent voting next July. The undersigned, as
their author, naturally favours their passage; but the one providing for
an abolition of the officers' activity requirements should not be
adopted without ample opportunity for debate and interchange of views.

The congratulations of the Association are extended to Mr. and Mrs.
Edward H. Cole upon the advent of a son, Edward Sherman Cole, on
February 14. With equal sincerity the United felicitates Ex-President
Leo Fritter, on his marriage to Miss Frances P. Hepner, March 6.

The United's 22nd annual convention will be held on July 22nd, 23d and
24th, at the Dells of the Wisconsin River. Under the direction of Mr.
Daas this event cannot fail to be of interest and pleasure to all
delegates, and every member who finds attendance possible is urged to be

To commend the official board for its generous, harmonious, and
industrious co-operation this year, seems but a reiteration of needless
panegyric; yet it would not be just to conclude this message without
some such expression of grateful appreciation. The enthusiastic and
unswerving loyalty of all our leaders has been a constant shield against
the adversity of these gloomy times, and has been wonderfully successful
in maintaining the United at a high cultural level.

                                           H. P. LOVECRAFT, President.
 March 8, 1918.



Howard Phillips Lovecraft

    The cloudless day is richer at its close;
      A golden glory settles on the lea;
    Soft stealing shadows hint of cool repose
      To mellowing landscape, and to calming sea.

    And in that nobler, gentler, lovelier light,
      The soul to sweeter, loftier bliss inclines;
    Freed from the noonday glare, the favour'd sight
      Increasing grace in earth and sky divines.

    But ere the purest radiance crowns the green,
      Or fairest lustre fills th' expectant grove,
    The twilight thickens, and the fleeting scene
      Leaves but a hallow'd memory of love!


=Eurus= for February serves a double purpose; to introduce to the United
in an editorial capacity the gifted poetess, Mrs. W. V. Jordan, and to
commemorate the 87th natal anniversary of amateurdom's best beloved
bard, Jonathan E. Hoag. The dedication to Mr. Hoag is both worthy and
well merited. There are few whose qualities could evoke so sincere an
encomium, and few encomiasts who could render so felicitous an
expression of esteem. The entire production sustains the best traditions
of Mrs. Jordan's work, and forms the most creditable individual paper to
appear in the United since the dawn of the new year.

The issue opens with Mr. Hoag's stately and beautiful poem, "To the
Falls of Dionondawa," which describes in an exquisite way the supposed
history of a delightful cascade in Greenwich, New York. The lines, which
are cast in the heroic couplet, have all the pleasing pomp and fire of
the Augustan age of English verse; and form a refreshing contrast to the
harsh or languid measures characteristic of the present day. Mr. Hoag
brings down to our time the urbane arts of a better literary period.

"An Appreciation," by Verna McGeoch, is a prose-poetical tribute to Mr.
Hoag, whose literary merit is of such a quality that we must needs
lament the infrequency with which the author contributes to the amateur
press. Of this piece a reader of broad culture lately said: "I have
never read a production of this kind, more finely phrased, more
comprehensive, more effective, and withal, so terse, and throughout, in
such excellent taste." =Eurus= has good reason for self-congratulation
on carrying this remarkable bit of composition.

"Chores," by Winifred Virginia Jordan, displays this versatile writer in
a very singular vein; that of sombre, repellent, rustic tragedy. It has
all the compelling power which marks Mrs. Jordan's darker productions,
and is conveyed in an arresting, staccato measure which emphasizes the
homely horror of the theme. The phraseology, with its large proportion
of rural and archaic words and constructions, adds vastly to the general
effect and atmosphere. We believe that Mrs. Jordan analyses the
New-England rustic mind more keenly and accurately than any other
amateur writer; interpreting rural moods and sentiments, be they bright
or dark, with unvarnished simplicity and absolute verisimilitude,
notwithstanding the fact that most of her verse is of a much more
polished and classical character. In "Chores" we are brought vividly
face to face with the bleakest aspect of rusticity; the dull,
commonplace couple, dwelling so far from the rest of mankind that they
have become almost primitive in thought and feelings, losing all the
complex refinements and humanities of social existence. The poem
intensifies that feeling of hidden terror and tragedy which sometimes
strikes us on beholding a lonely farmer, enigmatical of face and sparing
of words, or on spying, through the twilight, some grey, unpainted,
ramshackle, cottage, perched upon a wind-swept hill or propped up
against the jutting boulders of some deserted slope, miles from the town
and remote from the nearest neighbour.

"Young Clare," by Edith Miniter, is a narrative poem of that power and
polish which might be expected of its celebrated author. The only
considerable objection which could possibly be brought against it is a
technical one, applying to the fourth line of the opening stanza:

    "To work a cabaret show."

Here we must needs wonder at the use of =work= as a transitive verb when
the intransitive sense is so clearly demanded, and at the evident
accentuation of =cabaret=. We believe that the correct pronunciation of
=cabaret= is trisyllabic, with the accent on the final syllable, thus:
"=cab-a-ray=." We will not be quite so dogmatic about =artiste= in line
2 of the last stanza, though we think the best usage would demand the
accent on the final syllable.

"Gentle Gusts," the quaintly named editorial section, contains much
matter of merit, clothed in a pleasantly smooth style. The classical
name of the publication is here ingeniously explained, and its
dedication formally made. The tribute to Mr. Hoag is as well rendered as
it is merited. The editorial note on amateur criticism is sound and
kindly; the author voicing her protests in a manner which disarms them
of malice, and putting us in a receptive attitude. Personally, the
present critic is in complete agreement with the remarks on poetical
elision and inversions; but we are confident that those of our board who
hold different views, will accept the dicta in the friendly spirit

"Someone--Somewhere," by Jennie E. T. Dowe, is a delightful lyric by an
authoress too well known in amateurdom to need an introduction. Mrs.
Dowe writes with the polish of long experience and genuine culture,
displaying an enviable poetic genius.

=Eurus= closes with some commendatory lines to Mr. Hoag from the pen of
H. P. Lovecraft. They are in heroics, and redolent of the spirit of two
centuries ago. We discern no striking violations of good taste or metre,
nor do we find any remarkable poetic power or elevation of thought.

       *       *       *       *       *

=The Little Budget= for February and March is a double number, whose
size and quality are alike encouraging. The issue opens with an ornate
and felicitous Nature-poem by Rev. Eugene B. Kuntz, entitled "Above the
Clouds," in which the author for once breaks away from his favourite
Alexandrines and heptameters, presenting us with an ideally beautiful
specimen of the heroic quatrain. Despite the strong reasons which impel
Dr. Kuntz to adhere to long measures, we believe he should compose more
in pentameter. That his chosen metres have peculiar advantages, none
will deny; but it seems plain that the standard shorter line has other
advantages which amply outweigh them. It was not by chance that the line
of five iambuses became the dominant metre of our language. In the
present poem we discern a grace and flow far greater than any which
could pervade an Alexandrine piece; a condition well shown by parallel
perusal of this and one of the same author's more characteristic
efforts. As a creator of graphic, lofty, and majestic images, Dr. Kuntz
has no peer in amateurdom. His sense of colour and of music weaves a
rich and gorgeous element into the fabric of his work, and his sensitive
literary faculty gives birth to happy combinations of words and phrases
which not only please the imagination with their aptness, but delight
the ear with their intrinsic euphony.

"The Drama as a Medium of Education," by Lieut. Ernest L. McKeag, is a
short but terse essay on a neglected factor in liberal culture. It is
true that our ordinary curricula lay all too little stress on dramatic
art; and that as a result, this branch of Êsthetic expression is grossly
and consistently undervalued. The low estimate of the dramatic
profession entertained by Dr. Johnson is a sad illustration of the
one-sided state of mind prevailing even amongst scholars, concerning an
art which is certainly not inferior to painting and sculpture, and
probably much superior to music, in the Êsthetic and intellectual scale.

"The Wizard of the North," an essay on Sir Walter Scott, is the current
instalment of Miss Mappin's Modern Literature Series. It is marred by a
seeming hiatus, discernible not so much in the flow of words as in the
flow of the narrative, which leads us to believe that a considerable
portion has been left out, either through accident, or through an
attempt at abridgment.

"My Books," by Alfred H. Pearce is a sonnet of apt idea and perfect

"On Self-Sacrifice," by W. Townsend Ericson, is one of the "Essays of a
Dreamer" which are regularly appearing in the =Budget=. The effort is
marked by much sincerity and idealism, though in grammar and
practicability it is less distinguished. We might mention the erroneous
use of =whom= for =who= (a not uncommon defect amongst amateur writers),
the faulty use of the word =usurping= where =depriving= is meant, and
the split infinitive "to at least make;" all three of which mistakes
occur on page 138. Mr. Ericson should drill himself more thoroughly in
the principles of syntax. Other essays of this series are included in
the present issue. "On Contentment" gives an illustration which we fear
will injure Mr. Ericson's contention more than it will aid it. It is the
=reductio ad absurdum= of the typical "Pollyanna" school of philosophy.

"Down an' Out," by Ernest L. McKeag, is a very clever ballad of the
"rough and ready" school; picturesque in atmosphere, but somewhat
defective in technique. Lieut. McKeag should pay a trifle more attention
to his rhymes; which are not, however, worse than many of the rhymes in
"Hudibras" and other comic pieces.

"Why Roses are White," a children's story, by Margaret Mahon, is marked
by much grace and ingenuity; the central idea being quite original so
far as we know. Further contributions to the children's department are
made by Miss Birkmyre, whose woodland sketches will be appreciated by
older readers as well.

"Selfish Ambition," a poem, by Nell Hilliard, is as correct and fluent
in metre as we might expect from the author, though the expletive =does=
in the final line of the first stanza is not to be commended. The
sentiment is not precisely novel, but is well presented.

"The Flying Dutchman," a Romance of the Sea, by Joseph Parks, is more
replete with nautical verisimilitude than with literary force. As
compared with many of Mr. Parks' other tales, its plot is distinctly
weak and lacking in symmetry. We must, however, praise the generally
salty atmosphere. The picture of seafaring life is vivid and realistic.

The current =Budget= concludes with a summary of the year just closed,
displaying a record of achievement of which the editress may well be

       *       *       *       *       *

=The Silver Clarion= for March is the publication of John Milton
Samples, of Macon, Ga., a new member of the United. In tone the paper is
quite serious and strongly inclined toward the religious; but so able
are the majority of the contributions, that it lacks nothing in

"Singing on the Way," a poem by James Larkin Pearson, opens the issue in
attractive fashion. The lines are tuneful and felicitous, the triple
rhymes giving an especially pleasing effect; though we must criticise
the line

    "Will certainly provide for us"

as being a trifle prosaic. We should recommend "plenteously provide," or
something of that nature, as more poetic. Mr. Pearson is a poet of
ability and experience, with a volume of published verse to his credit,
whose work never falls below a high standard of merit.

"Just Icicles," by Sarah Story Duffee, is a sort of fairy tale with a
juvenile exterior; which contains, however, more than a slight hint of
the vanity of human wishes and fruitlessness of human endeavour. Whilst
it exhibits no little cleverness in construction, we must own that it
possesses certain looseness, insipidity, and almost rambling quality,
which detract from its merit as a piece of literature. Mrs. Duffee would
profit from a closer study of classical models, and a slighter attention
to the more ordinary folk tales.

"The Blessings of Thorns," by Sallie M. Adams, is a religious poem of
considerable excellence, containing a pious and worthy sentiment well
expressed. The chief defects are technical. In the first stanza, line 3
lacks a syllable, whilst line 4 has one too many. Also, the =day-way=
rhyme is repeated too closely. To have but one rhyming sound through two
rhymes is a fault hard to excuse. All the defects above enumerated might
be removed with ease, as the following revised version of the opening
lines illustrates:

    When we thank our Heav'nly Father
      For the boons each day bestow'd;
    For the flowers that are scatter'd
      O'er the roughness of the road.

In the third stanza we find the =day-way= rhyme again repeated, also a
superfluity of syllables in the sixth line. The latter might be cut down
by the omission of the second =the=.

"Springtime in Dixieland," by John Milton Samples, is a tuneful pastoral
which justifies the author's right to his first two names. But one or
two defects mar the general delightful effect. The phrase "zephyr
breeze," in the opening stanza, strikes us as a trifle pleonastic; since
a =zephyr= is itself a =breeze=; not a quality of a breeze. The syntax
of the latter part of this stanza is somewhat obscure, but might be
cleared up if the seventh line were thus amended:

    "And save when cloud-ships cross their track."

The sixth and seventh lines of the last stanza each have a syllable too
many, and in line 6 the word =raise= is used incorrectly; =rise= being
the word needed. This, of course, would necessitate a change of rhyme.

"One Face is Passing," by Mamie Knight Samples, is a timely and
excellent sketch concerning soldiers.

"Co-ee," a poem by Harry E. Rieseberg, contains much genuine pathos, and
is generally smooth and commendable in technique.

"The Likeness of the Deity," by Arthur H. Goodenough, is one of the
characteristically excellent products of its author, who holds the proud
rank of "Literatus" in the United. The amount and quality of Mr.
Goodenough's work is very unusual; few other amateurs producing so much
verse of the first order. As a religious poet, he stands alone;
resembling the celebrated Dr. Watts. He invests every theme he touches
with an atmosphere truly and richly poetic.

"Astral Nights," by John Milton Samples, is a genuinely poetic piece of
prose arranged in lines resembling those of verse. We believe that the
loftiness and excellence of this composition would justify its
metamorphosis into real verse.

Also by Editor Samples is the prose sketch entitled "The Present War: A
Blessing in Disguise." From the title, one would expect Mr. Samples'
point of view to be akin to that of the esteemed Gen. von Bernhardi; but
such is not the case, since Mr. Samples means to say that he considers
the conflict a just Divine Punishment for a sinful world--a punishment
which will bring about a sinless and exemplary future. We wish it were

"Lord, Keep My Spirit Sweet," by Mr. Samples, is a religious lyric of
substantial charm and grace.

The Editorials in this issue consist mainly of critical notes on
previous numbers, and in general show a gratifying soundness of opinion.

       *       *       *       *       *

=Spindrift= for January opens with "Mater Dolorosa," a poem, by Vere M.
Murphy, whose sentiment and technique are alike deserving of praise.

"The Spirit of January," a sketch by Jean Birkmyre, runs into the
February issue, and is quite acceptable from every point of view, though
not distinguished by that highly imaginative colouring which we find in
many of Miss Birkmyre's similar pieces.

"The Mystery of Murdor Grange" this month falls into the hands of Editor
McKeag, who furnishes one of the best chapters we have so far perused;
possibly the very best. It is exasperating to be cut off abruptly in the
midst of the exciting narrative, with the admonition to wait for page

       *       *       *       *       *

=Spindrift= for February has as its leading feature an essay on
"Heredity or Environment," by the Editor. In this brief article many
truths are stated, though we fear Lieut. McKeag slightly underestimates
the force of heredity. We might remind him of the Darwin family,
beginning with the poet and physician, Erasmus Darwin. The grandson of
this celebrated man was the immortal Charles Darwin, whilst the sons of
Charles have all occupied places of eminence in the world of intellect.

"To the Enlisted men of the United States," by Edna Hyde, is an ode of
admirable spirit and faultless construction.

"A Fragment," by S. L. (whose identity is now known to us!) shows much
poetical ability, though the metre would move much more smoothly if
judiciously touched up here and there. The description of the crescent
moon sinking in the morning, is astronomically erroneous.

"The Estates of Authors," by Albert E. Bramwell, is a brief but
informative article. As the late Dr. Johnson said of the Ordinary of
Newgate's account, "it contains strong facts."

       *       *       *       *       *

=Spindrift= for March very appropriately commences with a poem on that
blustering month, from the pen of Annie Pearce. Apparently the piece is
a juvenile effort, since despite a commendably poetic atmosphere there
are some striking errors of construction. In the third line of the first
stanza there is a very awkward use of the impersonal pronoun =one=. This
pronoun has no place in good poetry, and should always be avoided by
means of some equivalent arrangement. In the second stanza it appears
that the authoress, through the exigencies of versification, has fallen
into the paradox of calling the "fair green shoots" "roots!" Perhaps we
are mistaken, but our confusion is evidence of the lack of perspicuity
in this passage. A rather more obvious error is the evidently transitive
use of the verb =abound= in the last line of this stanza. Be it known,
that =abound= is strictly an intransitive verb!

"The Soul of Newcastle," an historical article by John M'Quillen, begins
in this number; and describes the Roman period. We regret the misprint
whereby the name =Aelii= becomes =Aelu=. The presence of a Hunnish
=umlaut= over the =u= adds insult to injury! Mr. M'Quillen writes in an
attractive style, and we shall look forward to the remainder of the
present article.

"Heart Thirst," by Vere M. Murphy, is a very meritorious lyric,
containing an ingenious conceit worthy of a more classical age.

       *       *       *       *       *

As the literary contributions to the UNITED AMATEUR for January are
mainly in the form of verse, I shall devote most of my attention to
them. Poetry, like the poor, we have always with us; but the critic is
moved to remark, as he casts back in his mind over the last twenty years
of amateur publishing activity, that on the whole the tone of amateur
poetry is distinctly higher than it used to be. Banal verse we still
have in larger amounts than we should; but the amateur journals of a
decade or two ago had reams of it. On the other hand, they contained not
a few poems with more than a passing spark of the divine fire. The
promising fact is that in the poetry of today's journals we get much
more frequent glimpses of this true inspiration. In passing, the critic
cannot forbear calling attention to Mr. Kleiner's "Ruth" in the February
=Brooklynite=, which attains the highest levels of lyric expression,
although only the simplest of figure and diction are employed. It is not
often that one runs across a poem so simple and yet so pregnant with
sincere emotion.

The first poem in the UNITED AMATEUR arouses mixed feelings. "Give Aid,"
by Julia R. Johnson, presents a thought that cannot be too often or too
strongly stressed in this gloomy old world. Mrs. Johnson, furthermore,
has carved out her own poetic medium, alternating two tetrameter lines
with a single heptameter, a most unusual combination. It is always a
promising sign to find a new poet experimenting with unhackneyed verse
forms, although the experiments may not always be happy ones. But a word
about the thought of this poem. It is one of those "recipe" poems,
so-called because it can be produced in almost unlimited quantities by
any writer clever enough to follow the formula. Some day the critic is
going to take enough time off to write a book of poetic recipes, and
already he has his subject so well blocked out that he is sure his book
will contain the fundamental ingredients of a great majority of the
amateur poems now appearing. The poem under consideration belongs to the
"glad" recipe, an off-shoot of the Pollyanna school of fiction, and true
to type it contains its quota of "glad" ingredients such as "cheer,"
"merry song," "troubles," and "sorrows," the last two, of course, for
the sake of contrast.

"Astrophobos," by Ward Phillips, is another recipe poem; although his
recipe is so much more intricate that it is not to be recommended for
the Freshman. The critic would denominate a poem composed according to
this recipe, a ulalumish poem, as it has so many earmarks of Poe. True
to type, it is ulaluminated with gorgeous reds and crimsons, vistas of
stupendous distances, coined phrases, unusual words, and general touches
of either mysticism or purposeless obscurity. Such a poem is a feast for
epicures who delight in intellectual caviar, but is not half so
satisfying to the average poetic taste as Mr. Kleiner's "Ruth."

Theodore Gottlieb's "Contentment" is a clever and readable working out
in verse of Mr. Ruskin's theme in his "King's Treasures"; namely, the
satisfying companionship of great books. Mr. Gottlieb shows commendable
control of the felicitous phrase, while the literary allusions with
which his lines bristle mark a catholicity of taste entirely beyond the

Metrical versions of the Psalms are not at all new; they are used, in
fact, in Scotch Presbyterian churches in place of regular hymns. The
poetic paraphrase of the first Psalm by Wilson Tylor is well done, and
only in a few such phrases as "winds that blow" and "perish and shall
not be blest," does he get dangerously near redundancy for the sake of
rhyme and metre.

"A Thought," by Dorothy Downs, is a pretty little thought indeed, and
prettily expressed, although the term "holiness divine" is strained when
applied to a rose, and "we will be surprised" is frankly ungrammatical
as a simple future in the first person. The =sine qua non= of all poetry
is absolutely correct grammar and freedom from redundancy.

The bit of verse heading the War Items written by F. G. Morris, is quite
adequate except for the lack of a rhyme in the last line, where the form
of the stanza leads the reader to expect a rhyme for "part."

Matthew Hilson's rhymed greeting to the United from across the water,
is on the whole, graceful and well done, and the United acknowledges its
receipt with thanks.

One other piece of work in this number deserves especial mention. Alfred
Galpin's "Mystery" introduces to the association a thinker more gifted
for his years than probably any other recruit within recent years. This
judgment is not based alone on the short article under consideration,
but even this little piece of thought, if carefully analysed, is enough
to stamp him as one who thinks with extreme facility in the deepest of
abstractions, and who for expression of that thought commands a
vocabulary of remarkable range. Mr. Galpin is going far in this world,
and we hope that he will sojourn long enough with us so that we can feel
that whatever glory he may attain will cast some of its rays upon the

The editorial remarks in this issue of the UNITED AMATEUR are worthy of
close perusal on account of their graceful literary quality. Seldom has
the critic seen the subject of the New Year so felicitously treated as
in this brief study by Miss McGeoch. The author's mastery of appropriate
words, phrases, and images, and her intuitive perception of the most
delicate elements of literary harmony, combine to make the reader wish
she were more frequently before the Association as a writer, as well as
in an editorial capacity.




According to indications, the last few weeks of the United's
administrative year will exceed their predecessors in general activity
and work accomplished. The college recruiting campaign, delayed through
an unavoidable combination of circumstances, is now taking definite
form; and may be expected to show some actual results even before the
close of the present term, though its greatest fruits must necessarily
be reaped by the next administration. General recruiting is on the
increase, and a more satisfactory number of renewals and reinstatements
is noted.

One of the greatest obstacles to be combated during this unsettled era,
is the mistaken notion that amateur journalism is a non-essential and a
luxury, unworthy of attention or support amidst the national stress. The
prevalence of this opinion is difficult to account for, since its logic
is so feeble. It is universally recognised that in times like these,
some form of relaxation is absolutely indispensable if the poise and
sanity of the people are to be preserved. Amusements of a lighter sort
are patronised with increased frequency, and have risen to the dignity
of essentials in the maintenance of the national morale. If, then, the
flimsiest of pleasures be accorded the respect and favour of the public,
what may we not say for amateur journalism, whose function is not only
to entertain and relieve the mind, but to uplift and instruct as well?
Mr. Edward H. Cole has ably treated this matter in his recent =Bema=,
and no one who thoughtfully reviews the situation can dispute the force
and verity of his conclusions. As Mr. Cole points out in a later
communication, war-time amateur effort must of course be less elaborate
than in pre-war days; but amateurdom itself is now worthy of double
encouragement, rather than discouragement, since by its soothing and
steadying influence it becomes a source of calm and strength, and
therefore an active factor in the winning of the war. Let us on this
side of the Atlantic view the rejuvenescence of British amateurdom after
four years of warfare, as exhibited in the formation of the prosperous
Amateur Press Club by Messrs. Winskill and Parks. The moral is not hard
to deduce.

Of the new publications of the season it is hard to speak without using
superlatives, since Mr. Cook's epoch-making June =Vagrant= is among
their number. This veritable book of 148 pages and cover constitutes the
greatest achievement of contemporary amateurdom, and may legitimately be
considered as one of the outstanding features in the recent history of
the institution. It is the one product of our day which will bear actual
comparison with the publications of the departed "Halcyon" period. A
July =Vagrant=, of equal quality though lesser size, may be expected in
the near future. A newcomer to our list of journals is =The Silver
Clarion=, issued by Mr. John Milton Samples of Macon, Ga., a promising
poet, essayist, and editor, who has just entered the Association. =The
Clarion=, whose contents are distinguished for their wholesome tone and
pleasing literary quality, is a regularly issued monthly, and forms a
substantial addition to the literature of the United. Another welcome
paper is =The Roamer=, published by Mr. Louis H. Kerber, Jr., of
Chicago. This journal, devoted exclusively to travel articles, will
occupy a unique place in the United. Among the papers to be expected
before the close of the official year are a =Dabbler= from Mr. Lindquist
and a =Yerma= from Mr. J. H. D. Smith, now a soldier in the service of
his country at Camp Laurel, Md.

Responses to the proposal for a co-operative paper have been slow in
coming in. Let the members once more reflect upon the advantages of the
plan, and unite in an effort to increase the literary output of the

The annual convention, to be held on the 22nd, 23d and 24th of next July
at the Dells of the Wisconsin River, may well be expected to stimulate
interest to an unusually high pitch. A large attendance is urged, and
since Mr. Daas is in charge of arrangements, the gathering will
undoubtedly prove a bright spot in the year's programme.

                                           H. P. LOVECRAFT, President.
 May 6, 1918.



Ward Phillips

    In the midnight heavens burning
      Through ethereal deeps afar,
    Once I watch'd with restless yearning
      An alluring, aureate star;
    Ev'ry eve aloft returning,
      Gleaming nigh the Arctic car.

    Mystic waves of beauty blended
      With the gorgeous golden rays;
    Phantasies of bliss descended
      In a myrrh'd Elysian haze;
    And in lyre-born chords extended
      Harmonies of Lydian lays.

    There (thought I) lie scenes of pleasure,
      Where the free and blessed dwell,
    And each moment bears a treasure,
      Freighted with the lotus-spell,
    And there floats a liquid measure
      From the lute of Israfel.

    There (I told myself) were shining
      Worlds of happiness unknown,
    Peace and Innocence entwining
      By the Crowned Virtue's throne;
    Men of light, their thoughts refining
      Purer, fairer, than our own.

    Thus I mus'd, when o'er the vision
      Crept a red delirious change;
    Hope dissolving to derision,
      Beauty to distortion strange;
    Hymnic chords in weird collision,
      Spectral sights in endless range.

    Crimson burn'd the star of sadness
      As behind the beams I peer'd;
    All was woe that seem'd but gladness
      Ere my gaze with truth was sear'd;
    Cacodaemons, mir'd with madness,
      Through the fever'd flick'ring leer'd.

    Now I know the fiendish fable
      That the golden glitter bore;
    Now I shun the spangled sable
      That I watch'd and lov'd before;
    But the horror, set and stable,
      Haunts my soul forevermore.


At the Root

H. P. Lovecraft

(Editor Laureate)

To those who look beneath the surface, the present universal war drives
home more than one anthropological truth in striking fashion; and of
these verities none is more profound than that relating to the essential
immutability of mankind and its instincts.

Four years ago a large part of the civilised world laboured under
certain biological fallacies which may, in a sense, be held responsible
for the extent and duration of the present conflict. These fallacies,
which were the foundation of pacifism and other pernicious forms of
social and political radicalism, dealt with the capability of man to
evolve mentally beyond his former state of subservience to primitive
instinct and pugnacity, and to conduct his affairs and international or
inter-racial relations on a basis of reason and good-will. That belief
in such capability is unscientific and childishly naive, is beside the
question. The fact remains, that the most civilised part of the world,
including our own Anglo-Saxondom, did entertain enough of these notions
to relax military vigilance, lay stress on points of honour, place trust
in treaties, and permit a powerful and unscrupulous nation to indulge
unchecked and unsuspected in nearly fifty years of preparation for
world-wide robbery and slaughter. We are reaping the result of our

The past is over. Our former follies we can but regret, and expiate as
best we may by a crusade to the death against the Trans-Rhenane monster
which we allowed to grow and flourish beneath our very eyes. But the
future holds more of responsibility, and we must prepare to guard
against any renascence of the benevolent delusions that four years of
blood have barely been able to dispel. In a word, we must learn to
discard forever the sentimental standpoint, and to view our species
through the cold eyes of science alone. We must recognise the essential
underlying savagery in the animal called man, and return to older and
sounder principles of national life and defence. We must realise that
man's nature will remain the same so long as he remains man; that
civilisation is but a slight coverlet beneath which the dominant beast
sleeps lightly and ever ready to awake. To preserve civilisation, we
must deal scientifically with the brute element, using only genuine
biological principles. In considering ourselves, we think too much of
ethics and sociology--too little of plain natural history. We should
perceive that man's period of historical existence, a period so short
that his physical constitution has not been altered in the slightest
degree, is insufficient to allow of any considerable mental change. The
instincts that governed the Egyptians and the Assyrians of old, govern
us as well; and as the ancients thought, grasped, struggled, and
deceived, so shall we moderns continue to think, grasp, struggle, and
deceive in our inmost hearts. Change is only superficial and apparent.

Man's respect for the imponderables varies according to his mental
constitution and environment. Through certain modes of thought and
training it can be elevated tremendously, yet there is always a limit.
The man or nation of high culture may acknowledge to great lengths the
restraints imposed by conventions and honour, but beyond a certain point
primitive will or desire cannot be curbed. Denied anything ardently
desired, the individual or state will argue and parley just so
long--then, if the impelling motive be sufficiently great, will cast
aside every rule and break down every acquired inhibition, plunging
viciously after the object wished; all the more fantastically savage
because of previous repression. =The sole ultimate factor in human
decisions is physical force.= This we must learn, however repugnant the
idea may seem, if we are to protect ourselves and our institutions.
Reliance on anything else is fallacious and ruinous. Dangerous beyond
description are the voices sometimes heard today, decrying the
continuance of armament after the close of the present hostilities.

The specific application of the scientific truth regarding man's native
instincts will be found in the adoption of a post-bellum international
programme. Obviously, we must take into account the primordial
substructure and arrange for the upholding of culture by methods which
will stand the acid test of stress and conflicting ambitions. In
disillusioned diplomacy, ample armament, and universal military training
alone will be found the solution of the world's difficulties. It will
not be a perfect solution, because humanity is not perfect. It will not
abolish war, because war is the expression of a natural human tendency.
But it will at least produce an approximate stability of social and
political conditions, and prevent the menace of the entire world by the
greed of any one of its constituent parts.




The conclusion of an administrative year is naturally a time for
retrospection rather than for announcement and planning, and seldom may
we derive more satisfaction from such a backward glance than at the
present period.

The United has just completed a twelvemonth which, though not notable
for numerousness of publications or expansion of the membership list,
will nevertheless be long remembered for the tone and quality of its
literature, and the uniformly smooth maintenance of its executive
programme. The virtual extirpation of petty politics, and the
elimination of all considerations save development of literary taste and
encouragement of literary talent, have raised our Association to a new
level of poise, harmony, dignity, and usefulness to the serious

Prime honours must be awarded to our Official Editor and Official
Publisher, who have given us an official organ unequalled and
unapproached in the history of amateur journalism. The somewhat altered
nature of contents, and radically elevated standard of editorship, mark
an era in the progress of the Association; since the UNITED AMATEUR is
really the nucleus of our activity and a reflection of the best in our
current thought and ideals. We have this year helped to shatter the
foolish fetichism which restricts the average official organ to a
boresome and needless display of facts and figures, relating to the
political mechanism of amateurdom. The organ has been a literary one, as
befits a literary association; and has been conducted with a sounder
sense of relative values than in times when amateurs seemed to place
elections and annual banquets above art, taste, and rhetoric.

The publications of the year have been distinguished for their merit,
general polish, and scholarly editorship. The percentage of crude matter
appearing in print has been reduced to a minimum through the careful and
conscientious critical service rendered both by the official bureau and
by private individuals. The artistic standard of the United has evolved
to a point where no aims short of excellence can win unqualified
approval. The classics have become our sole models, and whilst even the
most glaring faults of the sincere beginner receive liberal
consideration and sympathetically constructive attention, there is no
longer a seat of honour for complacent crudity. Genuine aspiration is
our criterion of worth. The spirit of this newer amateur journalism is
splendidly shown by such magazines of the year as =Eurus=, =Spindrift=,
=The Vagrant=, and the official organ.

Just before the close of the present term, several new publications have
appeared, amongst them a =Vagrant=, a =Conservative=, and Mr. Moloney's
splendid first venture, =The Voice From the Mountains=. Early in the
next fiscal year will appear =The United Co-Operative=, the fruit of
this year's planning, edited by Mrs. Jordan, Miss Lehr, Mr. J. Clinton
Pryor, and the undersigned. A revival of manuscript magazines,
inaugurated by the appearance of Sub-Lieut. McKeag's =Northumbrian=, is
in a measure solving the problems created by the high price of printing.
Next month the undersigned will put into circulation =Hesperia=, a
typewritten magazine designed to foster a closer relationship between
British and American amateurdom.

Judges of Award for the Laureateship contests have been appointed as
follows: Poetry, Mr. Nixon Waterman, a New-England bard who needs no
introduction to the lover of lofty and graceful expression. Verse, Dr.
Henry T. Schnittkind of the Stratford Publishing Co. Essay, Prof. Lewis
P. Shanks of the University of Pennsylvania. Study, Mr. J. Lee Robinson,
Editor of the =Cambridge Tribune=. Story, Mr. William R. Murphy of the
Philadelphia =Evening Ledger=, a former United man of the highest
attainments. Editorial, Hon. Oliver Wayne Stewart, Associate Editor of
=The National Enquirer=.

In doffing the official mantle after a year of executive endeavour, the
undersigned must express regret at his inability to serve in as vigorous
a manner as would the ideal President. He is acutely conscious of his
shortcomings in a position which demands constant care and exertion, and
which imposes a strain that only the robust are perfectly qualified to
bear. It would be impossible for him fully to express his gratitude to
his faithful and capable colleagues, to whose unremitting and
faultlessly co-ordinated efforts all the successes of the present year
must in justice be attributed. Valete!

                                           H. P. LOVECRAFT, President.
 June 26, 1918.

                      UNITED AMATEUR_




The Literature of Rome

H. P. Lovecraft

    _The centre of our studies, the goal of our thoughts, the point to
    which all paths lead and the point from which all paths start again,
    is to be found in Rome and her abiding power._--Freeman.

Few students of mankind, if truly impartial, can fail to select as the
greatest of human institutions that mighty and enduring civilisation
which, first appearing on the banks of the Tiber, spread throughout the
known world and became the direct parent of our own. If to Greece is due
the existence of all modern thought, so to Rome is due its survival and
our possession of it; for it was the majesty of the Eternal City which,
reducing all Western Europe to a single government, made possible the
wide and uniform diffusion of the high culture borrowed from Greece, and
thereby laid the foundation of European enlightenment. To this day the
remnants of the Roman world exhibit a superiority over those parts which
never came beneath the sway of the Imperial Mother; a superiority
strikingly manifest when we contemplate the savage code and ideals of
the Germans, aliens to the priceless heritage of Latin justice,
humanity, and philosophy. The study of Roman literature, then, needs no
plea to recommend it. It is ours by intellectual descent; our bridge to
all antiquity and to those Grecian stores of art and thought which are
the fountain head of existing culture.

In considering Rome and her artistic history, we are conscious of a
subjectivity impossible in the case of Greece or any other ancient
nation. Whilst the Hellenes, with their strange beauty-worship and
defective moral ideals, are to be admired and pitied at once, as
luminous but remote phantoms; the Romans, with their greater practical
sense, ancient virtue, and love of law and order, seem like our own
people. It is with personal pride that we read of the valour and
conquests of this mighty race, who used the alphabet we use, spoke and
wrote with but little difference many of the words we speak and write,
and with divine creative power evolved virtually all the forms of law
which govern us today. To the Greek, art and literature were
inextricably involved in daily life and thought; to the Roman, as to us,
they were a separate unit in a many-sided civilisation. Undoubtedly this
circumstance proves the inferiority of the Roman culture to the Greek;
but it is an inferiority shared by our own culture, and therefore a bond
of sympathy.

The race whose genius gave rise to the glories of Rome is, unhappily,
not now in existence. Centuries of devastating wars, and foreign
immigration into Italy, left but few real Latins after the early
Imperial Êra. The original Romans were a blend of closely related
dolichocephalic Mediterranean tribes, whose racial affinities with the
Greeks could not have been very remote, plus a slight Etruscan element
of doubtful classification. The latter stock is an object of much
mystery to ethnologists, being at present described by most authorities
as of the brachycephalic Alpine variety. Many Roman customs and habits
of thought are traceable to this problematical people.

It is a singular circumstance, that classic Latin literature is, save in
the case of satire, almost wholly unrelated to the crude effusions of
the primitive Latins; being borrowed as to form and subject from the
Greeks, at a comparatively late date in Rome's political history. That
this borrowing assisted greatly in Latin cultural advancement, none may
deny; but it is also true that the new Hellenised literature exerted a
malign influence on the nation's ancient austerity, introducing lax
Grecian notions which contributed to moral and material decadence. The
counter-currents, however, were strong; and the virile Roman spirit
shone nobly through the Athenian dress in almost every instance,
imparting to the literature a distinctively national cast, and
displaying the peculiar characteristics of the Italian mind. On the
whole, Roman life moulded Roman literature more than the literature
moulded the life.

The earliest writings of the Latins are, save for a fragment or two,
lost to posterity; though a few of their qualities are known. They were
for the most part crude ballads in an odd "Saturnian" metre copied from
the Etruscans, primitive religious chants and dirges, rough medleys of
comic verse forming the prototype of satire, and awkward "Fescennine"
dialogues or dramatic farces enacted by the lively peasantry. All
doubtless reflected the simple, happy and virtuous, if stern, life of
the home-loving agricultural race which was destined later to conquer
the world. In B. C. 364 the medleys or "SaturÊ" were enacted upon the
Roman stage, the words supplemented by the pantomime and dancing of
Etruscan performers who spoke no Latin. Another early form of dramatic
art was the "fabula Atellana," which was adapted from the neighbouring
tribe of Oscans, and which possessed a simple plot and stock characters.
While this early literature embodied Oscan and Etruscan as well as Latin
elements, it was truly Roman; for the Roman was himself formed of just
such a mixture. All Italy contributed to the Latin stream, but at no
time did any non-Roman dialect rise to the distinction of a real
literature. We have here no parallel for the ∆olic, Ionic, and Doric
phases of Greek literature.

Classical Latin literature dates from the beginning of Rome's free
intercourse with Greece, a thing brought about by the conquest of the
Hellenic colonies in Southern Italy. When Tarentum fell to the Romans in
B. C. 272, there was brought to Rome as a captive and slave a young man
of great attainments, by name Andronicus. His master, M. Livius
Salinator, was quick to perceive his genius, and soon gave him his
liberty, investing him according to custom with his own nomen of Livius,
so that the freedman was afterward known as Livius Andronicus. The
erstwhile slave, having established a school, commenced his literary
career by translating the Odyssey into Latin Saturnian verse for the use
of his pupils. This feat was followed by the translation of a Greek
drama, which was enacted in B. C. 240, and formed the first genuinely
classic piece beheld by the Roman public. The success of Livius
Andronicus was very considerable, and he wrote many more plays, in which
he himself acted, besides attempting lyric and religious poetry. His
work, of which but 41 lines remain in existence, was pronounced inferior
by Cicero; yet must ever be accorded respect as the very commencement of
a great literature.

Latin verse continued to depend largely on Greek models, but in prose
the Romans were more original, and the first celebrated prose writer was
that stern old Greek hater, M. Porcius Cato (234-149 B. C.), who
prepared orations and wrote on history, agriculture, and other subjects.
His style was clear, though by no means perfect, and it is a source of
regret that his historical work, the "Origines," is lost. Other prose
writers, all orators, extending from Cato's time down to the polished
period, are LÊlius, Scipio, the Gracchi, Antonius, Crassus, and the
celebrated Q. Hortensius, early opponent of Cicero.

Satire, that one absolutely native product of Italy, first found
independent expression in C. Lucilius (180-103 B. C.), though the great
Roman inclination toward that form of expression had already found an
outlet in satirical passages in other sorts of writing. There is perhaps
no better weapon for the scourging of vice and folly than this potent
literary embodiment of wit and irony, and certainly no author ever
wielded that weapon more nobly than Lucilius. His Êra was characterised
by great degeneracy, due to Greek influences, and the manner in which he
upheld failing Virtue won him the unmeasured regard of his
contemporaries and successors. Horace, Persius, and Juvenal all owe much
to him, and it is melancholy to reflect that all his work, save a
fragment or two, is lost to the world. Lucilius, sometimes called "The
Father of Satire," was a man of equestrian rank, and fought with Scipio
at Numantia.

With the age of M. Tullius Cicero (106-43 B. C.)--the Golden Age--opens
the period of highest perfection in Roman literature. It is hardly
necessary to describe Cicero himself--his luminous talents have made him
synonymous with the height of Attic elegance in wit, forensic art, and
prose composition. Born of equestrian rank, he was educated with care,
and embarked on his career at the age of twenty-five. His orations
against L. Sergius Catilina during his consulship broke up one of the
most dastardly plots in history, and gained for him the title of "Father
of His Country." Philosophy claimed much of his time, and his delightful
treatises "De Amicitia" and "De Senectute" will be read as long as
friendship endures on earth, or men grow old. Near the end of his life
Cicero, opposing the usurpations of M. Antonius, delivered his
masterpieces of oratory, the "Philippics," modelled after the similar
orations of the Greek Demosthenes against Philip of Macedonia. His
murder, demanded by the vengeful Antonius in the proscription of the
second triumvirate, was the direct result of these Philippics.
Contemporary with Cicero was M. Terentius Varro, styled "most learned of
the Romans," though ungraceful in style. Of his works, embracing many
diverse subjects, only one agricultural treatise survives.

In this survey we need allot but little space to Caius Julius CÊsar,
probably the greatest human being so far to appear on this globe. His
Commentaries on the Gallic and Civil Wars are models of pure and
perspicuous prose, and his other work, voluminous but now lost, was
doubtless of equal merit. At the present time, passages of CÊsar's
Gallic War are of especial interest on account of their allusions to
battles against those perpetual enemies of civilisation, the Germans.
How familiar, for instance, do we find the following passage from Book
Six, describing German notions of honour:

"Latrocinia nullam habent infamiam, quÊ extra fines cujusque civitatis
fiunt, atque ea juventutis exercendÊ ac desidiÊ minuendÊ causa fieri

The next generation of authors fall within what has been termed the
"Augustan Age," the period during which Octavianus, having become
Emperor, encouraged letters to a degree hitherto unknown; not only
personally, but through his famous minister MÊcenas (73-8 B. C.). The
literature of this period is immortal through the genius of Virgil,
Horace, and Ovid, and has made the name "Augustan" an universal synonyme
for classic elegance and urbanity. Thus in our own literary history,
Queen Anne's reign is known as the "Augustan Age" on account of the
brilliant wits and poets then at their zenith. MÊcenas, whose name must
ever typify the ideal of munificent literary patronage, was himself a
scholar and poet, as was indeed Augustus. Both, however, are
overshadowed by the titanic geniuses who gathered around them.

Succeeding the Golden Age, and extending down to the time of the
Antonines, is the so-called "Silver Age" of Latin literature, in which
are included several writers of the highest genius, despite a general
decadence and artificiality of style. In the reign of Tiberius we note
the annalists C. Velleius Paterculus and Valerius Maximus, the medical
writer, A. Cornelius Celsus, and the fabulist PhÊdrus, the latter a
freedman from Thrace who imitated his more celebrated predecessor ∆sop.

The satirist, A. Persius Flaccus (34-62 A. D.), is the first eminent
poet to appear after the death of Ovid. Born at VolaterrÊ of an
equestrian family, carefully reared by his gifted mother, and educated
at Rome by the Stoic philosopher Cornutus, he became famous not only as
a moralist of the greatest power and urbanity, but as one whose life
accorded perfectly with his precepts; a character of unblemished virtue
and delicacy in an age of unprecedented evil. His work, which attacked
only the less repulsive follies of the day, contains passages of the
highest nobility. His early death terminated a career of infinite

In the person of D. Junius Juvenalis (57-128 A. D.), commonly called
Juvenal, we behold the foremost satirist in literary history. Born at
Aquinum of humble but comfortably situated parents, he came to Rome as a
rhetorician; though upon discovering his natural bent, turned to
poetical satire. With a fierceness and moral seriousness unprecedented
in literature, Juvenal attacked the darkest vices of his age; writing as
a relentless enemy rather than as a man of the world like Horace, or as
a detached spectator like Persius. The oft repeated accusation that his
minute descriptions of vice shew a morbid interest therein, may fairly
be refuted when one considers the almost unthinkable depths to which the
republic had fallen. Only a tolerant or a secluded observer could avoid
attacking openly and bitterly the evil conditions which obtruded
themselves on every hand; and Juvenal, a genuine Roman of the active and
virtuous old school, was neither tolerant nor secluded. Juvenal wrote
sixteen satires in all, the most famous of which are the third and
tenth, both imitated in modern times with great success by Dr. Johnson.
Contemporary with Juvenal was the Spaniard, M. Valerius Martialis
(43-117 A. D.), commonly called Martial, master of the classic epigram.
Unsurpassed in compact, scintillant wit, his works present a subjective
and familiar picture of that society which Juvenal so bitterly attacked
from without.

We come now upon one of the most distressing spectacles of human
history. The mighty empire of Rome; its morals corrupted through Eastern
influences, its spirit depressed through despotic government, and its
people reduced to mongrel degeneracy through unrestrained immigration
and foreign admixture; suddenly ceases to be an abode of creative
thought, and sinks into a mental lethargy which dries up the very
fountains of art and literature. The Emperor Constantinus, desirous of
embellishing his new capital with the most magnificent decorations, can
find no artist capable of fashioning them; and is obliged to strip
ancient Greece of her choicest sculptures to fulfil his needs. Plainly,
the days of Roman glory are over; and only a few and mainly mediocre
geniuses are to be expected in the years preceding the actual downfall
of Latin civilisation.

It is interesting, in a melancholy way, to trace the course of Roman
poetry down to its very close, when it is lost amidst the darkness of
the Middle Ages. Claudius Rutilius Namatianus, who flourished in the 5th
century, was a Gaul, and wrote a very fair piece culled the
"Itinerarium," describing a voyage from Rome to his native province.
Though inferior to his contemporary, Claudian, in genius, Rutilius
excels him in purity of diction and refinement of taste. At this period,
pure Latin was probably confined to the highest circles, the masses
already using that =eloquium vulgare= which later on formed the several
modern Romance Languages; hence Rutilius must have been in a sense a
classical antiquarian.

The end draws near. Compilers, grammarians, critics, commentators, and
encyclopÊdists; summarising the past and quibbling over technical
minutiÊ; are the last survivors of a dying literature from whence
inspiration has already fled. Macrobius, a critic and grammarian of
celebrity, flourished in the fourth or fifth century, and interests us
as being one through knowledge of whose works Samuel Johnson first
attracted notice at Oxford. Priscian, conceded to be one of the
principal grammatical authorities of the Roman world, flourished about
the year 500. Isidorus Hispalensis, Bishop of Seville, grammarian,
historian and theologian, was the most celebrated and influential
literary character of the crumbling Roman fabric, save the philosopher
Boetius and the historian Cassiodorus, and was highly esteemed during
the Middle Ages, of which, indeed, he was as much a part, as he was a
part of expiring classicism.

Now falls the curtain. =Roma fuit.= At the time of Isidorus' death in
A. D. 636, the beginnings of mediÊvalism were fully under way.
Authorship had disappeared in the broader sense; learning, such as it
was, had retired into the monasteries; whilst the populace of the
erstwhile Empire, living side by side with the invading barbarians, no
longer spoke a language justly to be called classical Latin. With the
revival of letters we shall see more Latin writings, but they will not
be Roman; for their authors will have new and strange idioms for their
mother-tongues, and will view life in a somewhat different manner. The
link of continuity will have been irreparably broken, and these revivers
will be Romans only in an artificial and antiquarian sense. He who calls
himself "Pomponius LÊtus" will be found to have been baptised Pomponio
Leto. Classical antiquity, with its simple magnificence, can never

In glancing back over the literature we have examined, we are impressed
by its distinctiveness, despite its Greek form. It is truly
characteristic of the Roman people, and expresses Rome's majestic mind
in a multitude of ways. Law, order, justice, and supremacy; "these
things, O Roman, shall to you be arts!" All through the works of Latin
authors runs this love of fame, power, order, and permanence. Art is not
a prime phase of life or entirely an intrinsic pleasure, but a means of
personal or national glorification; the true Roman poet writes his own
epitaph for posterity, and exults in the lasting celebrity his memory
will receive. Despite his debt to Hellas, he detests the foreign
influence, and can find no term of satirical opprobrium more biting than
"GrÊculus." The sense of rigid virtue, so deficient in the Greek,
blossoms forth nobly in the Roman; making moral satire the greatest of
native growths. Naturally, the Roman mind is most perfectly expressed in
those voluminous works of law, extending all the way down to the
Byzantine age of Justinianus, which have given the modern world its
entire foundation of jurisprudence; but of these, lack of space forbids
us to treat. They are not, strictly speaking, a part of literature

The influence of the Latin classics upon modern literature has been
tremendous. They are today, and will ever be, vital sources of
inspiration and guidance. Our own most correct age, that of Queen Anne
and the first three Georges, was saturated with their spirit; and there
is scarce a writer of note who does not visibly reflect their immediate
influence. Each classic English author has, after a fashion, his Latin
counterpart. Mr. Pope was a Horace; Dr. Johnson a Juvenal. The early
Elizabethan tragedy was a reincarnation of Seneca, as comedy was of
Plautus. English literature teems with Latin quotations and allusions to
such a degree that no reader can extract full benefit if he have not at
least a superficial knowledge of Roman letters.

Wherefore it is enjoined upon the reader not to neglect cultivation of
this rich field; a field which offers as much of pure interest and
enjoyment of necessary cultural training and wholesome intellectual

To Alan Seeger:

Howard Phillips Lovecraft

(In =National Enquirer=)

    SEEGER, whose soul, with animated lyre
    Wak'd the dull dreamer to a manlier fire;
    Whose martial voice, by martial deeds sustain'd,
    Denounc'd the age when shameful peace remain'd;
    Let thy brave spirit yet among us dwell,
    And linger where thy form in valour fell:
    Proudly before th' invader's fury mass'd,
    Behold thy country's cohorts, rous'd at last!
    It was not for thy mortal eye to see
    Columbia arm'd for right and liberty;
    Thine was the finer heart, that could not stay
    To wait for laggards in the vital fray,
    And ere the millions felt thy sacred heat,
    Thou hadst thy gift to Freedom made complete.
    But while thou sleepest in an honour'd grave
    Beneath the Gallic sod thou bledst to save,
    May thy soul's vision scan the ravag'd plain,
    And tell thee that thou didst not fall in vain:
    Here, as thou pray'dst, a million men advance,
    To prove Columbia one with flaming France,
    And heeding now the long-forgotten debt,
    Pay with their blood the gen'rous LAFAYETTE!
    Thy ringing odes to prophecies are turn'd,
    Whilst legions feel the blaze that in thee burn'd.
    Not as a lonely stranger dost thou lie,
    Thy form forsaken 'neath a foreign sky,
    On Gallic tongues thy name forever lives,
    First of the mighty host thy country gives:
    All that thou dreamt'st in life shall come to be,
    And proud Columbia find her voice in thee!

(Alan Seeger fell in the Cause of Civilisation at Belloy-en-Santerre,
July 4, 1916.)




    Last of the giants, in whose soul shone clear
          The sacred torch of greatness and of right,
    A stricken world, that cannot boast thy peer,
          Mourns o'er thy grave amidst the new-born night.

    Sage, seer and statesman, wise in ev'ry art;
          First to behold, and first to preach, the truth;
    Soldier and patriot, in whose mighty heart
          Throbb'd the high valour of eternal youth.

    Foremost of citizens and best of chiefs,
          Within thy mind no weak inaction lay;
    Leal to thy standards, firm in thy beliefs;
          As quick to do, as others are to say.

    Freeman and gentleman, whose spirit glow'd
          With kindness' and with goodness' warmest fire;
    To prince and peasant thy broad friendship flow'd,
          Each proud to take, and eager to admire.

    Within thy book of life each spotless page
          Lies open for a world's respecting view;
    Thou stand'st the first and purest of our age,
          To private, as to public virtue true.

    In thee did such transcendent greatness gleam,
          That none might grudge thee an Imperial place;
    Yet such thy modesty, thou need'st must seem
          The leader, not the monarch, of thy race.

    Courage and pow'r, to wit and learning join'd,
          With energy that sham'd the envious sun;
    The ablest, bravest, noblest of mankind--
          A Caesar and Aurelius mixt in one.

    At thy stern gaze Dishonour bow'd its head;
          Oppression slunk ingloriously away;
    The virtuous follow'd where thy footsteps led,
          And Freedom bless'd thy uncorrupted sway.

    When from the East invading Vandals pour'd,
          And selfish ignorance restrain'd our hand,
    Thy voice was first to bid us draw the sword
          To guard our liberties and save our land.

    Envy deny'd thee what thy spirit sought,
          And held thee from the battle-seething plain;
    Yet thy proud blood in filial bodies fought,
          And poppies blossom o'er thy QUENTIN slain.

    'Twas thine to see the triumph of thy cause;
          Thy grateful eyes beheld a world redeem'd;
    Would that thy wisdom might have shap'd the laws
          Of the new age, and led to heights undream'd!

    Yet art thou gone? Will not thy presence cling
          Like that of all the great who liv'd before?
    Will not new wonders of thy fashioning
          Rise from thy words, as potent as of yore?

    Absent in flesh, thou with a brighter flame
          Shin'st as the beacon of the brave and free;
    Thou art our country's soul--our loftiest aim
          Is but to honour and to follow thee!

                                      H. P. LOVECRAFT.
 January 13, 1919.


A Note on Howard P. Lovecraft's Verse

Rheinhart Kleiner

Comment occasioned by the verse of Mr. Howard P. Lovecraft, who is a
more or less frequent contributor to the amateur press, has not
consisted of unmixed praise.

Certain critics have regarded his efforts as too obviously imitative of
a style that has long been discredited. Others have accepted his work
with admiration and have even gone so far as to imitate the couplets
which he produces with such apparent ease.

Between these two opinions there is a critical neutral ground, the
holders of which realise how large an element of conscious parody enters
into many of Mr. Lovecraft's longer and more serious productions, and
who are capable of appreciating the cleverness and literary charm of
these pastoral echoes without being dominated by them to the extent of
indiscriminate praise and second-hand imitation.

Those who would beguile Mr. Lovecraft from his chosen path are probably
unaware of the attitude which he consistently maintains toward hostile
criticism. Mr. Lovecraft contends that it gives him pleasure to write as
the Augustans did, and that those who do not relish his excursions into
classic fields need not follow him. He tries to conciliate no one, and
is content to be his own sole reader! What critic, with these facts
before him, will think it worthwhile to break a lance with the poet?

But even Mr. Lovecraft is willing to be original, at times. He has
written verse of a distinctly modern atmosphere, and where his imagery
is not too obtrusively artificial--according to the modern idea--many of
his quatrains possess genuine poetic value.

Many who cannot read his longer and more ambitious productions find Mr.
Lovecraft's light or humorous verse decidedly refreshing. As a satirist
along familiar lines, particularly those laid down by Butler, Swift and
Pope, he is most himself--paradoxical though it seems. In reading his
satires one cannot help but feel the zest with which the author has
composed them. They are admirable for the way in which they reveal the
depth and intensity of Mr. Lovecraft's convictions, while the wit,
irony, sarcasm and humour to be found in them serve as an indication of
his powers as a controversialist. The almost relentless ferocity of his
satires is constantly relieved by an attendant broad humour which has
the merit of causing the reader to chuckle more than once in the perusal
of some attack levelled against the particular person or policy which
may have incurred Mr. Lovecraft's displeasure.



=The Coyote= for October-January is a "Special War Number," dedicated to
Cpl. Raymond Wesley Harrington, the editor's valiant soldier brother,
and having a general martial atmosphere throughout. Among the contents
are two bits of verse by the gallant overseas warrior to whom the issue
is inscribed, both of which speak well for the poetic sentiment of their
heroic author.

"Lord Love You, Lad," a poem by Winifred V. Jordan, is the opening
contribution; and deserves highest commendation both for its spirit and
for its construction.

"The Paramount Issue," by William T. Harrington, is a somewhat ambitious
attempt to trace the responsibility for the great war to alcoholic
liquor and its degenerative effect on mankind. The author even goes so
far as to say that "had man been represented in his true and noble form,
then war would have been impossible." Now although the present critic is
and always has been an ardent prohibitionist, he must protest at this
extravagant theory. Vast and far-reaching as are the known evil effects
of drink, it is surely transcending fact to accuse it of causing
mankind's natural greed, pride, and combative instincts, which lie at
the base of all warfare. It may, however, be justly suggested that much
of the peculiar bestiality of the Huns is derived from their swinish
addiction to beer. Technically, Mr. Harrington's essay is marked by few
crudities, and displays an encouraging fluency. Other pieces by Mr.
Harrington are "A Bit of My Diary," wherein the author relates his
regrettably brief military experience at Camp Dodge, and "Victory," a
stirring editorial.

"Black Sheep," by Edna Hyde, is an excellent specimen of blank verse by
our gifted laureate. Line 14 seems to lack a syllable, but this
deficiency is probably the result of a typographical error.

A word of praise is due the general appearance of the magazine. The
cover presents a refreshing bit of home-made pictorial art, whilst the
photograph of Corporal Harrington makes a most attractive frontispiece.

       *       *       *       *       *

=The Pathfinder= for January is easily the best issue yet put forth by
its enterprising young editor. "Hope," which adorns the cover, is a poem
of much merit by Annie Pearce. The apparent lack of a syllable in line 2
of the third stanza is probably due to a printer's error whereby the
word =us= is omitted immediately after the word =for=.

"How and Why Roses Are White," by Margaret Mahon, is a fairy legend of
much charm and decided originality, which argues eloquently for its
author's imaginative scope and literary ability.

"Happiness in a Glove" is a very facile and pleasing rendering of a bit
of Spanish dialogue. Through a mistake, the authorship is credited to
the translator, Miss Ella M. Miller, though her own manuscript fully
proclaimed the text as a translation.

"Welcome, 1919," is a brief contemplative essay by Editor Glause; in
spirit admirable, but in phraseology showing some of the uncertainty of
youthful work. Mr. Glause might well pay more attention to compact
precision in his prose, using as few and as forceful words as possible
to express his meaning. For instance, his opening words would gain
greatly in strength if contracted to the following: "Now that a new year
is beginning." Farther down the page we find the word =namely= in a
place which impels us to question its use. Its total omission would
strengthen the sentence which contains it. Another point we must mention
is the excessive punctuation, especially the needless hyphenation of
=amateurdom= and =therefore=, and the apostrophe in the possessive
pronoun =its=. The form =it's= is restricted to the colloquial
contraction of "=it is="; the similarly spelled pronoun is written
solidly without an apostrophe. Additional notes by Mr. Glause are of
equal merit, and his reply to a recent article on travel is highly
sensible and commendable. He is a writer and thinker of much power, and
needs only technical training in order to develop into an essayist of
the first rank. As an editor he cannot be praised too highly for his
faithfulness in publishing his welcome and attractive quarterly.

       *       *       *       *       *

=Pine Cones= for February well maintains the high standard set by Mr.
Pryor in his opening number. "Life, Death and Immortality," by Jonathan
E. Hoag, is a brief but appealing piece from the pen of a gifted and
venerable bard, and thoroughly deserves its place of honour on the
cover. On the next page occurs a metrical tribute to this sweet singer
on his 88th birthday, written by H. P. Lovecraft in the latter's typical
heroic strain.

"The Helpful Twins," a clever child story by Editor Pryor, is the prose
treat of the issue. It would, indeed, be hard to find more than one or
two equally interesting, human, and well-developed bits of fiction in
any current amateur periodicals. Not only are the characters drawn with
delightful naturalness, but there is real humour present; and the plot
moves on to its climax without a single instance of awkwardness or a
single intrusive or extraneous episode. In short, the story is almost a
model of its kind; one which ought to prove a success in a professional
as well as an amateur magazine. Mr. Pryor's humour is more broadly shown
in the smile-producing pseudo-anecdotes of "The Boy Washington."

The bit of unsigned verse, "A New Year Wish," is excellent, though we
question the advisability of having an Alexandrine for the final line.

"Comment Pryoristic" is always interesting, and that in the current
=Pine Cones= forms no exception to the rule. The appearance of this
vigorously alive and intelligently edited publication is proving a great
and gratifying factor in amateurdom's post-bellum renaissance.

       *       *       *       *       *

=The Recruiter= for January marks the advent to amateurdom of a new
paper, which easily takes its place among the very best of recent
editorial enterprises. Edited by Misses Mary Faye Durr and L. Evelyn
Schump in the interest of the United recruits whom they are securing,
its thoroughly meritorious quality speaks well for the new members thus
added to our circle.

The issue opens auspiciously with a lyric poem of distinguished
excellence by Helen McFarland, entitled "A Casualty." In depth of
sentiment, fervour of expression, and correctness of construction, these
melodious lines leave little to be desired; and seem to indicate that
the United has acquired one more poet of the first rank.

"Billy," a character sketch by L. Evelyn Schump, introduces to the
Association a light essayist of unusual power and grace, whose work is
vividly natural through keen insight, apt and fluent expression, and
mastery of homely and familiar detail. The present sketch is
captivatingly lifelike and thoroughly well-written, arousing a response
from every lover of children.

"Winter," a brief poem by Hettie Murdock, celebrates in a pleasant way
an unpleasant season. The lines are notable for correctness, spontaneity
and vitality, though not in the least ambitious in scope.

Martha Charlotte Macatee's "Song of Nature" reveals its 12-year-old
creator as a genuine "Galpiness" (if we may coin a word which only
amateurs and Appletonians will understand). Mistress Macatee has
succeeded in infusing more than a modicum of really poetic atmosphere
and imagery into her short lyric, and may be relied upon to produce
important work in the coming years of greater maturity. The chief defect
of her present piece is the absence of rhyme, which should always occur
in a short stanzaic poem. Rhyming is not at all difficult after a little
practice, and we trust that the young writer will employ it in later

"Tarrytown," by Florence Fitzgerald, is a reminiscent poem of phenomenal
strength, marred only by a pair of false rhymes in the opening stanza.
Assonance must never be mistaken for true rhyme, and combinations like
=boats-float= or =them-brim= should be avoided. The imagery of this
piece is especially appealing, and testifies to its author's fertility
of fancy.

"Shades of Adam," by Mary Faye Durr, is an interesting and humorously
written account of the social side of our 1918 convention. Miss Durr is
exceptionally gifted in the field of apt, quiet, and laconic wit, and in
this informal chronicle neglects no opportunity for dryly amusing
comment on persons and events.

"Spring," by L. Evelyn Schump, is a refreshingly original poem in blank
verse, on a somewhat familiar subject. For inspiration and technique
alike, the piece merits enthusiastic commendation; though we may
vindicate our reputation as a fault-finding critic by asking why
alternate lines are indented despite the non-existence of alternate

=The Recruiter's= editorial column is brief and businesslike,
introducing the magazine as a whole, and its contributors individually.
Amateurdom is deeply indebted to the publishers of this delightful
newcomer, and it is to be hoped that they may continue their efforts;
both toward seeking recruits as high in quality as those here
represented, and toward issuing their admirable journal as frequently as
is feasible.

       *       *       *       *       *

=The Silver Clarion= for January comes well up to the usual standard,
containing a number of pieces of considerable power. In "The Temple of
the Holy Ghost," Mr. Arthur Goodenough achieves his accustomed success
as a religious poet, presenting a variety of apt images, and clothing
them in facile metre. The only defect is a lack of uniformity in rhyming
plan. The poet, in commencing a piece like this, should decide whether
or not to rhyme the first and third lines of quatrains; and having
decided, should adhere to his decision. Instead, Mr. Goodenough omits
these optional rhymes in the first stanza and in the first half of the
third and fourth stanzas; elsewhere employing them. The result, while
not flagrantly inharmonious, nevertheless gives an impression of
imperfection, and tends to alienate the fastidious critic. Mr.
Goodenough possesses so great a degree of inspiration, and so wide an
array of allusions and imagery; that he owes it to himself to complete
the excellence of his vivid work with an unexceptionable technique.

"The Cross," a sonnet by Captain Theodore Draper Gottlieb, is dedicated
to the Red Cross, with which the author is serving so valiantly. In
thought and form this piece deserves unqualified praise.

"Death," by Andrew Francis Lockhart, exhibits our versatile Western bard
in sober mood. The poem contains that unmistakable stamp of genuine
emotion which we have come to associate with Mr. Lockhart's work, and is
technically faultless.

"Destiny," by W. F. Pelton, is a sonnet of smooth construction and
thorough excellence by one whom we know better as "Wilfrid Kemble."

The lines "To My Pal, Fred" present Mr. Harry E. Rieseberg, a new
member of the United who has for some time been a regular =Clarion=
contributor. In this piece Mr. Rieseberg falls somewhat below his usual
standard; for though the sentiment is appropriate, the metre is sadly
irregular. Mr. Rieseberg should count the syllables in his lines, for he
is a young poet of much promise, and should allow his technique to keep
pace with his genius.

"Faith," by Winifred V. Jordan, enunciates a familiar doctrine in
melodious and original metaphor, and well sustains the poetical
reputation of its celebrated author.

"The Song Unsung," by W. F. Booker, is a war poem in minor key, which
deserves much praise.

"You're Like a Willow," by Eugene B. Kuntz, is marked by that warmth of
fancy and wealth of imagery for which its author is noted.

"Thoughts," a courtly offering from the quill of James Laurence Crowley,
winds up the poetical part of the magazine; this month a very ample
part. In rhyme and metre this sentimental gem is quite satisfactory.

The only prose in this issue is Mr. Samples' well-written editorial on
"The Passing Year." Herein we find some really excellent passages,
savouring somewhat of the oratorical in style.

       *       *       *       *       *

=The Silver Clarion= for February is of ample size and ample merit.
Opening the issue is an excellent poem in heroic couplets by Mrs. Stella
L. Tully of Mountmellick, Ireland, a new member of the United. Mrs.
Tully, whose best work is in a lyric and religious vein, is one endowed
with hereditary or family genius; as the Association no doubt
appreciated when reading the poetry of her gifted sister, Mrs. S. Lilian
McMullen of Newton Centre, in the preceding issue of THE UNITED AMATEUR.
The present piece by Mrs. Tully, "The Greatest of These is Love," is
based upon a Biblical text, and sets forth its ideas very effectively,
despite a few passages whose stiff construction betrays a slight
inexperience in the traditions of heroic verse.

"The Two Crosses," by Capt. Theodore Gottlieb, is also in heroics, and
graphically compares the most holy symbols of today and of nineteen
hundred years ago.

More of the religious atmosphere is furnished by John Milton Samples'
trochaic composition entitled "The Millennium"--from whose title, by the
way, one of the necessary n's is missing. In this pleasing picture of
an impossible age we note but three things requiring critical attention.
(1) The term "super-race" in stanza 5, is too technically philosophical
to be really poetic. (2) The rhyme of =victory= and =eternally= is not
very desirable, because both the rhyming syllables bear only a secondary
accent. (3) There is something grotesque and unconsciously comic in the
prophecy "Then the lamb shall kiss the lion." Such grotesqueness is not
to be found in the original words of Mr. Samples' predecessor and source
of inspiration, the well-known prophet Isaiah. (Vide Isaiah, xi: 6-7.)

"Nature Worship," by Arthur Goodenough, is one of the most meritorious
poems in the issue, despite some dubious grammar in the first stanza,
and an internal rhyme in the final stanza which has no counterpart in
the lines preceding. The first named error consists of a disagreement in
number betwixt subject and verb: "faith and form and ... mazes which ...
perplexes, dazes."

"The New Order," an essay by John Milton Samples, is an eloquent but
fantastically idealistic bit of speculation concerning the wonderful
future which dreamers picture as arising out of the recent war. To us,
there is a sort of pathos in these vain hopes and mirage-like visions of
an Utopia which can never be; yet if they can cheer anyone, they are
doubtless not altogether futile. Indeed, after the successive menaces of
the Huns and the Bolsheviki, we can call almost any future Utopian, if
it will but afford the comparative calm of pre-1914 days!

"No Night So Dark, No Day So Drear," by Mamie Knight Samples, is a poem
which reveals merit despite many crudities. The outstanding fault is
defective metre--Mrs. Samples should carefully count her syllables, and
repeat her lines aloud, to make sure of perfect scansion. Since the
intended metre appears to be iambic tetrameter, we shall here give a
revised rendering of the first stanza; showing how it can be made to
conform to that measure:

    "No night so dark, no day so drear,
    But we may sing our songs of cheer."
    These words, borne from the world without,
    Cheer'd a heart sick with grief and doubt.
    O doubting soul, bow'd down so low,
    If thou couldst feel, and only know
    The darkness is in thee alone,
    For grief and tears it would atone.
    "No night so dark, no day so drear,
    But we may sing our songs of cheer."

Let the authoress note that each line must have eight syllables--no
more, no less. For the trite ideas and hackneyed rhymes, nothing can be
recommended save a more observant and discriminating perusal of standard
poets. It must be kept in mind that the verse found in current family
magazines and popular hymn-books is seldom, if ever, true poetry. The
only authors suitable as models, are those whose names are praised in
histories of English literature.

W. F. Booker's "Song" is a delightful short lyric whose sentiment and
technique deserve naught but praise.

"When I Am Gone," a poem in pentameter quatrains by James Laurence
Crowley, contains the customary allotment of sweet sentiment, together
with some really commendable imagery. Mr. Crowley's genius will shine
brightly before long.

"The Path to Glory," by Andrew Francis Lockhart, is perhaps the poetic
gem of the issue. In this virile anapÊstic piece Mr. Lockhart sums up
all the horrors of the trenches in such a way that the reader may guess
at the extent of the sacrifice undergone by those who have given all for
their country.

In "Coconino Jim, Lumberjack," Mr. Harry E. Rieseberg shows himself a
true and powerful poet of the rugged, virile school of Kipling, Service,
Knibbs, and their analogues. The present piece is entirely correct in
rhyme and well-developed in thought, wanting only good metre to make it
perfect. This latter accomplishment Mr. Rieseberg should strive hard to
attain, for his poetry surely deserves as good a form as he can give it.

A word of praise should be given Mr. Samples' editorial, "The
Professional in Amateur Journalism," in which he shows the fallacy of
the plea for a cruder, more juvenile amateurdom, which often emanates
from members of the older and less progressive associations. As the
editor contends, intellectual evolution must occur; and the whole recent
career of the United demonstrates the value of a purely literary society
for genuine literary aspirants of every age and every stage of mental


Helene Hoffman Cole--Litterateur

Howard Phillips Lovecraft

Of the various authors who have contributed to the fame of our
Association, few can be compared in sustained ability and breadth of
interests to the late Helene Hoffman Cole. Represented in the press as a
poet, critic, essayist, and fiction-writer, Mrs. Cole achieved
distinction in all of these departments; rising during recent years to
an almost unique prominence in the field of book-reviewing. Her
compositions display a diversity of attainments and catholicity of taste
highly remarkable in one of so relatively slight an age, familiar
knowledge of foreign and archaic literature supplying a mature
background too seldom possessed by amateur authors.

It is as a poet that Mrs. Cole has been least known, since her verse was
not of frequent occurrence in the amateur press. A glance at the few
existing specimens, however, demonstrates conclusively that her poetical
gifts were by no means inconsiderable; and that had she chosen such a
course, she might easily have become one of the leading bards of the
United. Verse like the unnamed autumn pieces in =Leaflets= and =The
Hellenian= possess an aptness and cleverness of fancy which bespeak the
true poet despite trivial technical imperfections.

In fiction the extent of Mrs. Cole's genius was still further revealed,
nearly all her narratives moving along with impeccable grace and
fluency. Her plots were for the most part light and popular in nature,
and would have reflected credit on any professional writer of modern
magazine tales. Of her stories, "The Picture," appearing in =Leaflets=
for October, 1913, is an excellent example. More dramatic in quality is
"Her Wish," in the August, 1914, =Olympian=. This brief tragedy of a
Serbian and his bride is perhaps one of the very first tales written
around the World War.

But it is in the domain of the literary essay that this authoress rose
to loftiest altitude. Of wide and profound reading, and of keen and
discriminating mind, Mrs. Cole presented in a style of admirable grace
and lucidity her reactions to the best works of numerous standard
authors, ancient and modern, English and foreign. The value of such work
in amateurdom, extending the cultural outlook and displaying the outside
world as seen through the eyes of a gifted, respected, and
representative member, scarce needs the emphasis of the commentator. He
who can link the amateur and larger spheres in a pleasing and acceptable
fashion, deserves the highest approbation and panegyric that the United
can bestow. Notable indeed are Mrs. Cole's sound reviews of Sir Thomas
Browne's "Hydriotaphia" in THE UNITED AMATEUR, of "Pelle, the Conqueror"
in =The Tryout=, and of numerous South American works but little known
to Northern readers. Of equal merit are such terse and delightful essays
as "M. Tullius Cicero, Pater Patriae," where the essayist invests a
classical theme with all the living charm of well-restrained
subjectivity. The style of these writings is in itself captivating; the
vocabulary containing enough words of Latin derivation to rescue it from
the Boeotian harshness typical of this age. All that has been said of
Mrs. Cole's broader reviews may be said of her amateur criticism, much
of which graced the columns of =The Olympian= and other magazines.

The exclusively journalistic skill of Mrs. Cole now remains to be
considered, and this we find as brilliant as her other attainments. As
the editor of numerous papers during every stage of her career, she
exhibited phenomenal taste and enterprise; never failing to create
enthusiasm and evoke encomium with her ventures both individual and
co-operative. Her gift for gathering, selecting and writing news was
quite unexampled. As the reporter =par excellence= of both associations,
she was the main reliance of other editors for convention reports and
general items; all of which were phrased with an ease, urbanity, and
personality that lent them distinctiveness. Not the least of her
qualities was a gentle and unobtrusive humour which enlivened her
lighter productions. Amateurdom will long remember the quaint piquancy
of the issues of =The Martian= which she cleverly published in the name
of her infant son.

During these latter days nearly every amateur has expressed a kind of
incredulity that Mrs. Cole can indeed be no more, and in this the
present writer must needs share. To realise that her gifted pen has
ceased to enrich our small literary world requires a painful effort on
the part of everyone who has followed her brilliant progress in the
field of letters. The United loses more by her sudden and untimely
demise than can well be reckoned at this moment.



Howard Phillips Lovecraft


It is easy to sentimentalise on the subject of "the American
spirit"--what it is, may be, or should be. Exponents of various novel
political and social theories are particularly given to this practice,
nearly always concluding that "true Americanism" is nothing more or less
than a national application of their respective individual doctrines.

Slightly less superficial observers hit upon the abstract principle of
"Liberty" as the keynote of Americanism, interpreting this justly
esteemed principle as anything from Bolshevism to the right to drink
2.75 per cent. beer. "Opportunity" is another favourite byword, and one
which is certainly not without real significance. The synonymousness of
"America" and "opportunity" has been inculcated into many a young head
of the present generation by Emerson via Montgomery's "Leading Facts of
American History." But it is worthy of note that nearly all would-be
definers of "Americanism" fail through their prejudiced unwillingness to
trace the quality to its European source. They cannot bring themselves
to see that abiogenesis is as rare in the realm of ideas as it is in the
kingdom of organic life; and consequently waste their efforts in trying
to treat America as if it were an isolated phenomenon without ancestry.

"Americanism" is expanded Anglo-Saxonism. It is the spirit of England,
transplanted to a soil of vast extent and diversity, and nourished for a
time under pioneer conditions calculated to increase its democratic
aspects without impairing its fundamental virtues. It is the spirit of
truth, honour, justice, morality, moderation, individualism,
conservative liberty, magnanimity, toleration, enterprise,
industriousness, and progress--which is England--plus the element of
equality and opportunity caused by pioneer settlement. It is the
expression of the world's highest race under the most favourable social,
political, and geographical conditions. Those who endeavour to belittle
the importance of our British ancestry, are invited to consider the
other nations of this continent. All these are equally "American" in
every particular, differing only in race-stock and heritage; yet of them
all, none save British Canada will even bear comparison with us. We are
great because we are a part of the great Anglo-Saxon cultural sphere; a
section detached only after a century and a half of heavy colonisation
and English rule, which gave to our land the ineradicable stamp of
British civilisation.

Most dangerous and fallacious of the several misconceptions of
Americanism is that of the so-called "melting-pot" of races and
traditions. It is true that this country has received a vast influx of
non-English immigrants who come hither to enjoy without hardship the
liberties which our British ancestors carved out in toil and bloodshed.
It is also true that such of them as belong to the Teutonic and Celtic
races are capable of assimilation to our English type and of becoming
valuable acquisitions to the population. But, from this it does not
follow that a mixture of really alien blood or ideas has accomplished or
can accomplish anything but harm. Observation of Europe shows us the
relative status and capability of the several races, and we see that the
melting together of English gold and alien brass is not very likely to
produce any alloy superior or even equal to the original gold.
Immigration cannot, perhaps, be cut off altogether, but it should be
understood that aliens who choose America as their residence must accept
the prevailing language and culture as their own; and neither try to
modify our institutions, nor to keep alive their own in our midst. We
must not, as the greatest man of our age declared, suffer this nation to
become a "polyglot boarding house."

The greatest foe to rational Americanism is that dislike for our parent
nation which holds sway amongst the ignorant and bigoted, and which is
kept alive largely by certain elements of the population who seem to
consider the sentiments of Southern and Western Ireland more important
than those of the United States. In spite of the plain fact that a
separate Ireland would weaken civilisation and menace the world's peace
by introducing a hostile and undependable wedge betwixt the two major
parts of Saxondom, these irresponsible elements continue to encourage
rebellion in the Green Isle; and in so doing tend to place this nation
in a distressingly anomalous position as an abettor of crime and
sedition against the Mother Land. Disgusting beyond words are the public
honours paid to political criminals like Edward, alias Eamonn, de
Valera, whose very presence at large among us is an affront to our
dignity and heritage. Never may we appreciate or even fully comprehend
our own place and mission in the world, till we can banish those clouds
of misunderstanding which float between us and the source of our

But the features of Americanism peculiar to this continent must not be
belittled. In the abolition of fixed and rigid class lines a distinct
sociological advance is made, permitting a steady and progressive
recruiting of the upper levels from the fresh and vigorous body of the
people beneath. Thus opportunities of the choicest sort await every
citizen alike, whilst the biological quality of the cultivated classes
is improved by the cessation of that narrow inbreeding which
characterises European aristocracy.

Total separation of civil and religious affairs, the greatest political
and intellectual advance since the Renaissance, is also a local
American--and more particularly a Rhode Island--triumph. Agencies are
today subtly at work to undermine this principle, and to impose upon us
through devious political influences the Papal chains which Henry VIII
first struck from our limbs; chains unfelt since the bloody reign of
Mary, and infinitely worse than the ecclesiastical machinery which Roger
Williams rejected. But when the vital relation of intellectual freedom
to genuine Americanism shall be fully impressed upon the people, it is
likely that such sinister undercurrents will subside.

The main struggle which awaits Americanism is not with reaction, but
with radicalism. Our age is one of restless and unintelligent
iconoclasm, and abounds with shrewd sophists who use the name
"Americanism" to cover attacks on that institution itself. Such familiar
terms and phrases as "democracy," "liberty," or "freedom of speech" are
being distorted to cover the wildest forms of anarchy, whilst our old
representative institutions are being attacked as "un-American" by
foreign immigrants who are incapable both of understanding them or of
devising anything better.

This country would benefit from a wider practice of sound Americanism,
with its accompanying recognition of an Anglo-Saxon source. Americanism
implies freedom, progress, and independence; but it does not imply a
rejection of the past, nor a renunciation of traditions and experience.
Let us view the term in its real, practical, and unsentimental meaning.


The White Ship

Howard Phillips Lovecraft

I am Basil Elton, keeper of the North Point light that my father and
grandfather kept before me. Far from the shore stands the grey
lighthouse, above sunken slimy rocks that are seen when the tide is low,
but unseen when the tide is high. Past that beacon for a century have
swept the majestic barques of the seven seas. In the days of my
grandfather there were many; in the days of my father not so many; and
now there are so few that I sometimes feel strangely alone, as though I
were the last man on our planet.

From far shores came those white-sailed argosies of old; from far
Eastern shores where warm suns shine and sweet odours linger about
strange gardens and gay temples. The old captains of the sea came often
to my grandfather and told him of these things, which in turn he told to
my father, and my father told to me in the long autumn evenings when
the wind howled eerily from the East. And I have read more of these
things, and of many things besides, in the books men gave me when I was
young and filled with wonder.

But more wonderful than the lore of old men and the lore of books is the
secret lore of ocean. Blue, green, grey, white or black; smooth,
ruffled, or mountainous; that ocean is not silent. All my days have I
watched it and listened to it, and I know it well. At first it told to
me only the plain little tales of calm beaches and near ports, but with
the years it grew more friendly and spoke of other things; of things
more strange and more distant in space and in time. Sometimes at
twilight the grey vapours of the horizon have parted to grant me
glimpses of the ways beyond; and sometimes at night the deep waters of
the sea have grown clear and phosphorescent, to grant me glimpses of the
ways beneath. And these glimpses have been as often of the ways that
were and the ways that might be, as of the ways that are; for ocean is
more ancient than the mountains, and freighted with the memories and the
dreams of Time.

Out of the South it was that the White Ship used to come when the moon
was full and high in the heavens. Out of the South it would glide very
smoothly and silently over the sea. And whether the sea was rough or
calm, and whether the wind was friendly or adverse, it would always
glide smoothly and silently, its sails distent and its long strange
tiers of oars moving rhythmically. One night I espied upon the deck a
man, bearded and robed, and he seemed to beckon me to embark for fair
unknown shores. Many times afterward I saw him under the full moon, and
ever did he beckon me.

Very brightly did the moon shine on the night I answered the call, and I
walked out over the waters to the White Ship on a bridge of moonbeams.
The man who had beckoned now spoke a welcome to me in a soft language I
seemed to know well, and the hours were filled with soft songs of the
oarsmen as we glided away into a mysterious South, golden with the glow
of that full, mellow moon.

And when the day dawned, rosy and effulgent, I beheld the green shore of
far lands, bright and beautiful, and to me unknown. Up from the sea rose
lordly terraces of verdure, tree-studded, and shewing here and there the
gleaming white roofs and colonnades of strange temples. As we drew
nearer the green shore the bearded man told me of that land, the Land of
Zar, where dwell all the dreams and thoughts of beauty that come to men
once and then are forgotten. And when I looked upon the terraces again I
saw that what he said was true, for among the sights before me were many
things I had once seen through the mists beyond the horizon in the
phosphorescent depths of ocean. There too were forms and fantasies more
splendid than I had ever known; the visions of young poets who died in
want before the world could learn of what they had seen and dreamed. But
we did not set foot upon the sloping meadows of Zar, for it is told that
he who treads them may nevermore return to his native shore.

As the White Ship sailed silently away from the templed terraces of Zar,
we beheld on the distant horizon ahead the spires of a mighty city; and
the bearded man said to me, "This is Thalarion, the City of a Thousand
Wonders, wherein reside all those mysteries that man has striven in vain
to fathom." And I looked again, at closer range, and saw that the city
was greater than any city I had known or dreamed of before. Into the sky
the spires of its temples reached, so that no man might behold their
peaks; and far back beyond the horizon stretched the grim, grey walls,
over which one might spy only a few roofs, weird and ominous, yet
adorned with rich friezes and alluring sculptures. I yearned mightily to
enter this fascinating yet repellent city, and beseeched the bearded man
to land me at the stone pier by the huge carven gate Akariel; but he
gently denied my wish, saying, "Into Thalarion, the City of a Thousand
Wonders, many have passed but none returned. Therein walk only dÊmons
and mad things that are no longer men, and the streets are white with
the unburied bones of those who have looked upon the eidolon Lathi, that
reigns over the city." So the White Ship sailed on past the walls of
Thalarion, and followed for many days a southward-flying bird, whose
glossy plumage matched the sky out of which it had appeared.

Then came we to a pleasant coast gay with blossoms of every hue, where
as far inland as we could see basked lovely groves and radiant arbours
beneath a meridian sun. From bowers beyond our view came bursts of song
and snatches of lyric harmony, interspersed with faint laughter so
delicious that I urged the rowers onward in my eagerness to reach the
scene. And the bearded man spoke no word, but watched me as we
approached the lily-lined shore. Suddenly a wind blowing from over the
flowery meadows and leafy woods brought a scent at which I trembled. The
wind grew stronger, and the air was filled with the lethal, charnel
odour of plague-stricken towns and uncovered cemeteries. And as we
sailed madly away from that damnable coast the bearded man spoke at
last, saying, "This is Xura, the Land of Pleasures Unattained."

So once more the White Ship followed the bird of heaven, over warm
blessed seas fanned by caressing, aromatic breezes. Day after day and
night after night did we sail, and when the moon was full we would
listen to soft songs of the oarsmen, sweet as on that distant night when
we sailed away from my far native land. And it was by moonlight that we
anchored at last in the harbour of Sona-Nyl, which is guarded by twin
headlands of crystal that rise from the sea and meet in a resplendent
arch. This is the Land of Fancy, and we walked to the verdant shore upon
a golden bridge of moonbeams.

In the Land of Sona-Nyl there is neither time nor space, neither
suffering nor death; and there I dwelt for many Êons. Green are the
groves and pastures, bright and fragrant the flowers, blue and musical
the streams, clear and cool the fountains, and stately and gorgeous the
temples, castles, and cities of Sona-Nyl. Of that land there is no
bound, for beyond each vista of beauty rises another more beautiful.
Over the countryside and amidst the splendour of cities can move at will
the happy folk, of whom all are gifted with unmarred grace and unalloyed
happiness. For the Êons that I dwelt there I wandered blissfully through
gardens where quaint pagodas peep from pleasing clumps of bushes, and
where the white walks are bordered with delicate blossoms. I climbed
gentle hills from whose summits I could see entrancing panoramas of
loveliness, with steepled towns nestling in verdant valleys, and with
the golden domes of gigantic cities glittering on the infinitely distant
horizon. And I viewed by moonlight the sparkling sea, the crystal
headlands, and the placid harbour wherein lay anchored the White Ship.

It was against the full moon one night in the immemorial year of Tharp
that I saw outlined the beckoning form of the celestial bird, and felt
the first stirrings of unrest. Then I spoke with the bearded man, and
told him of my new yearning to depart for remote Cathuria, which no man
hath seen, but which all believe to lie beyond the basalt pillars of the
West. It is the Land of Hope, and in it shine the perfect ideals of all
that we know elsewhere; or at least so men relate. But the bearded man
said to me, "Beware of those perilous seas wherein men say Cathuria
lies. In Sona-Nyl there is no pain nor death, but who can tell what lies
beyond the basalt pillars of the West?" Natheless at the next full moon
I boarded the White Ship, and with the reluctant bearded man left the
happy harbour for untravelled seas.

And the bird of heaven flew before, and led us toward the basalt pillars
of the West, but this time the oarsmen sang no soft songs under the full
moon. In my mind I would often picture the unknown Land of Cathuria with
its splendid groves and palaces, and would wonder what new delights
there awaited me. "Cathuria," I would say to myself, "is the abode of
gods and the land of unnumbered cities of gold. Its forests are of aloe
and sandalwood, even as the fragrant groves of Camorin, and among the
trees flutter gay birds sweet with song. On the green and flowery
mountains of Cathuria stand temples of pink marble, rich with carven and
painted glories, and having in their courtyards cool fountains of
silver, where purl with ravishing music the scented waters that come
from the grotto-born river Narg. And the cities of Cathuria are
cinctured with golden walls, and their pavements are also of gold. In
the gardens of these cities are strange orchids, and perfumed lakes
whose beds are of coral and amber. At night the streets and the gardens
are lit with gay lanthorns fashioned from three-coloured shell of the
tortoise, and here resound the soft notes of the singer and the
lutanist. And the houses of the cities of Cathuria are all palaces, each
built over a fragrant canal bearing the waters of the sacred Narg. Of
marble and porphyry are the houses, and roofed with glittering gold
that reflects the rays of the sun and enhances the splendour of the
cities as blissful gods view them from the distant peaks. Fairest of all
is the palace of the great monarch Dorieb, whom some say to be a demigod
and others a god. High is the palace of Dorieb, and many are the turrets
of marble upon its walls. In its wide halls may multitudes assemble, and
here hang the trophies of the ages. And the roof is of pure gold, set
upon tall pillars of ruby and azure, and having such carven figures of
gods and heroes that he who looks up to those heights seem to gaze upon
the living Olympus. And the floor of the palace is of glass, under which
flow the cunningly lighted waters of the Narg, gay with gaudy fish not
known beyond the bounds of lovely Cathuria."

Thus would I speak to myself of Cathuria, but ever would the bearded man
warn me to turn back to the happy shores of Sona-Nyl; for Sona-Nyl is
known of men, while none hath ever beheld Cathuria.

And on the thirty-first day that we followed the bird, we beheld the
basalt pillars of the West. Shrouded in mist they were, so that no man
might peer beyond them or see their summits--which indeed some say reach
even to the heavens. And the bearded man again implored me to turn back,
but I heeded him not; for from the mists beyond the basalt pillars I
fancied there came the notes of singer and lutanist; sweeter than the
sweetest songs of Sona-Nyl, and sounding mine own praises; the praises
of me, who had voyaged far under the full moon and dwelt in the Land of

So to the sound of melody the White Ship sailed into the mist betwixt
the basalt pillars of the West. And when the music ceased and the mist
lifted, we beheld not the Land of Cathuria, but a swift-rushing
resistless sea, over which our helpless barque was borne toward some
unknown goal. Soon to our ears came the distant thunder of falling
waters, and to our eyes appeared on the far horizon ahead the titanic
spray of a monstrous cataract, wherein the oceans of the world drop down
to abysmal nothingness. Then did the bearded man say to me with tears on
his cheek, "We have rejected the beautiful Land of Sona-Nyl, which we
may never behold again. The gods are greater than men, and they have
conquered." And I closed my eyes before the crash that I knew would
come, shutting out the sight of the celestial bird which flapped its
mocking blue wings over the brink of the torrent.

Out of that crash came darkness, and I heard the shrieking of men and of
things which were not men. From the East tempestuous winds arose, and
chilled me as I crouched on the slab of damp stone which had risen
beneath my feet. Then as I heard another crash I opened my eyes and
beheld myself upon the platform of that lighthouse from whence I had
sailed so many Êons ago. In the darkness below there loomed the vast
blurred outlines of a vessel breaking up on the cruel rocks, and as I
glanced out over the waste I saw that the light had failed for the first
time since my grandfather had assumed its care.

And in the later watches of the night, when I went within the tower, I
saw on the wall a calendar which still remained as when I had left it at
the hour I sailed away. With the dawn I descended the tower and looked
for wreckage upon the rocks, but what I found was only this: a strange
dead bird whose hue was as of the azure sky, and a single shattered
spar, of a whiteness greater than that of the wave-tips or of the
mountain snow.

And thereafter the ocean told me its secrets no more; and though many
times since has the moon shone full and high in the heavens, the White
Ship from the South came never again.


(With humblest apologies to Randolph St. John, Gent.)

L. Theobald, Jun.

    Before our sight your mobile face
      Depicts your joys or woes distracting;
    We marvel at your winsome grace--
      And wish you'd learn the art of acting!

    Your eyes, we vow, surpass the stars;
      Your mouth is like the bow of Cupid;
    Your rose-ting'd cheeks no wrinkle mars--
      Yet why are you so sweetly stupid?

    The hero views you with delight,
      To win your hand forever working;
    We pity him--the witless wight--
      To fall a victim to your smirking!

    And yet, why should we wail in rhyme
      Because so crudely you dissemble?
    We can't expect for one small dime,
      To see a Woffington or Kemble!


Literary Composition

H. P. Lovecraft

In a former article our readers have been shewn the fundamental sources
of literary inspiration, and the leading prerequisites to expression. It
remains to furnish hints concerning expression itself; its forms,
customs, and technicalities, in order that the young writer may lose
nothing of force or charm in presenting his ideas to the public.


A review of the elements of English grammar would be foreign to the
purpose of this department. The subject is one taught in all common
schools, and may be presumed to be understood by every aspirant to
authorship. It is necessary, however, to caution the beginner to keep a
reliable grammar and dictionary always beside him, that he may avoid in
his compositions the frequent errors which imperceptibly corrupt even
the purest ordinary speech. As a general rule, it is well to give close
critical scrutiny to all colloquial phrases and expressions of doubtful
parsing, as well as to all words and usages which have a strained or
unfamiliar sound. The human memory is not to be trusted too far, and
most minds harbour a considerable number of slight linguistic faults and
inelegancies picked up from random discourse or from the pages of
newspapers, magazines, and popular modern books.

Types of Mistakes

Most of the mistakes of young authors, aside from those gross violations
of syntax which ordinary education corrects, may perhaps be enumerated
as follows.

    (1) Erroneous plurals of nouns, as =vallies= or =echos=.

    (2) Barbarous compound nouns, as =viewpoint= or =upkeep=.

    (3) Want of correspondence in number between noun and verb where the
    two are widely separated or the construction involved.

    (4) Ambiguous use of pronouns.

    (5) Erroneous case of pronouns, as =whom= for =who=, and vice versa,
    or phrases like "between you and =I=," or "Let =we= who are loyal,
    act promptly."

    (6) Erroneous use of =shall= and =will=, and of other auxiliary

    (7) Use of intransitive for transitive verbs, as "he =was graduated=
    from college," or vice versa, as "he =ingratiated= with the tyrant."

    (8) Use of nouns for verbs, as "he =motored= to Boston," or "he
    =voiced= a protest."

    (9) Errors in moods and tenses of verbs, as "If I =was= he, I should
    do otherwise," or "He said the earth =was= round."

    (10) The split infinitive, as "=to= calmly =glide=."

    (11) The erroneous perfect infinitive, as "Last week I expected =to
    have met= you."

    (12) False verb-forms, as "I =pled= with him."

    (13) Use of =like= for =as=, as "I strive to write =like= Pope

    (14) Misuse of prepositions, as "The gift was bestowed =to= an
    unworthy object," or "The gold was divided =between= the five men."

    (15) The superfluous conjunction, as "I wish =for= you to do this."

    (16) Use of words in wrong =senses=, as "The book greatly
    =intrigued= me," "=Leave= me take this," "He was =obsessed= with the
    idea," or "He is a =meticulous= writer."

    (17) Erroneous use of non-Anglicised foreign forms, as "a strange
    =phenomena=," or "two =stratas= of clouds."

    (18) Use of false or unauthorized words, as =burglarize= or

    (19) Errors of taste, including vulgarisms, pompousness, repetition,
    vagueness, ambiguousness, colloquialism, bathos, bombast, pleonasm,
    tautology, harshness, mixed metaphor, and every sort of rhetorical

    (20) Errors of spelling and punctuation, and confusion of forms such
    as that which leads many to place an apostrophe in the possessive
    pronoun =its=.

Of all blunders, there is hardly one which might not be avoided through
diligent study of simple textbooks on grammar and rhetoric, intelligent
perusal of the best authors, and care and forethought in composition.
Almost no excuse exists for their persistent occurrence, since the
sources of correction are so numerous and so available. Many of the
popular manuals of good English are extremely useful, especially to
persons whose reading is not as yet extensive; but such works sometimes
err in being too pedantically precise and formal. For correct writing,
the cultivation of patience and mental accuracy is essential. Throughout
the young author's period of apprenticeship, he must keep reliable
dictionaries and textbooks at his elbow; eschewing as far as possible
that hasty extemporaneous manner of writing which is the privilege of
more advanced students. He must take no popular usage for granted, nor
must he ever hesitate, in case of doubt, to fall back on the authority
of his books.


No aspiring author should content himself with a mere acquisition of
technical rules. As Mrs. Renshaw remarked in the preceding article,
"Impression should ever precede and be stronger than expression." All
attempts at gaining literary polish must begin with judicious =reading=,
and the learner must never cease to hold this phase uppermost. In many
cases, the usage of good authors will be found a more effective guide
than any amount of precept. A page of Addison or of Irving will teach
more of style than a whole manual of rules, whilst a story of Poe's will
impress upon the mind a more vivid notion of powerful and correct
description and narration than will ten dry chapters of a bulky
textbook. Let every student read unceasingly the best writers, guided by
the admirable Reading Table which has adorned the UNITED AMATEUR during
the past two years.

It is also important that cheaper types of reading, if hitherto
followed, be dropped. Popular magazines inculcate a careless and
deplorable style which is hard to unlearn, and which impedes the
acquisition of a purer style. If such things must be read, let them be
skimmed over as lightly as possible. An excellent habit to cultivate is
the analytical study of the King James Bible. For simple yet rich and
forceful English, this masterly production is hard to equal; and even
though its Saxon vocabulary and poetic rhythm be unsuited to general
composition, it is an invaluable model for writers on quaint or
imaginative themes. Lord Dunsany, perhaps the greatest living prose
artist, derived nearly all of his stylistic tendencies from the
Scriptures; and the contemporary critic Boyd points out very acutely the
loss sustained by most Catholic Irish writers through their
unfamiliarity with the historic volume and its traditions.


One superlatively important effect of wide reading is the enlargement of
vocabulary which always accompanies it. The average student is gravely
impeded by the narrow range of words from which he must choose, and he
soon discovers that in long compositions he cannot avoid monotony. In
reading, the novice should note the varied mode of expression practiced
by good authors, and should keep in his mind for future use the many
appropriate synonymes he encounters. Never should an unfamiliar word be
passed over without elucidation; for with a little conscientious
research we may each day add to our conquests in the realm of philology,
and become more and more ready for graceful independent expression.

But in enlarging the vocabulary, we must beware lest we misuse our new
possessions. We must remember that there are fine distinctions betwixt
apparently similar words, and that language must ever be selected with
intelligent care. As the learned Dr. Blair points out in his Lectures,
"Hardly in any language are there two words that convey precisely the
same idea; a person thoroughly conversant in the propriety of language
will always be able to observe something that distinguishes them."

Elemental Phases

Before considering the various formal classes of composition, it is well
to note certain elements common to them all. Upon analysis, every piece
of writing will be found to contain one or more of the following basic
principles: =Description=, or an account of the appearance of things;
=Narration=, or an account of the actions of things; =Exposition=, which
defines and explains with precision and lucidity; =Argument=, which
discovers truth and rejects error; and =Persuasion=, which urges to
certain thoughts or acts. The first two are the bases of fiction; the
third didactic, scientific, historical and editorial writings. The
fourth and fifth are mostly employed in conjunction with the third, in
scientific, philosophical, and partisan literature. All these
principles, however, are usually mingled with one another. The work of
fiction may have its scientific, historical, or argumentative side;
whilst the textbook or treatise may be embellished with descriptions and


Description, in order to be effective, calls upon two mental qualities;
observation and discrimination. Many descriptions depend for their
vividness upon the accurate reproduction of details; others upon the
judicious selection of salient, typical, or significant points.

One cannot be too careful in the selection of adjectives for
descriptions. Words or compounds which describe precisely, and which
convey exactly the right suggestions to the mind of the reader, are
essential. As an example, let us consider the following list of epithets
applicable to a =fountain=, taken from Richard Green Parker's admirable
work on composition.

    Crystal, gushing, rustling, silver, gently-gliding, parting, pearly,
    weeping, bubbling, gurgling, chiding, clear, grass-fringed,
    moss-fringed, pebble-paved, verdant, sacred, grass-margined,
    moss-margined, trickling, soft, dew-sprinkled, fast-flowing,
    delicate, delicious, clean, straggling, dancing, vaulting,
    deep-embosomed, leaping, murmuring, muttering, whispering,
    prattling, twaddling, swelling, sweet-rolling, gently-flowing,
    rising, sparkling, flowing, frothy, dew-distilling, dew-born,
    exhaustless, inexhaustible, never-decreasing, never-failing,
    heaven-born, earth-born, deep-divulging, drought-dispelling,
    thirst-allaying, refreshing, soul-refreshing, earth-refreshing,
    laving, lavish, plant-nourishing.

For the purpose of securing epithets at once accurate and felicitous,
the young author should familiarize himself thoroughly with the general
aspect and phenomena of Nature, as well as with the ideas and
associations which these things produce in the human mind.

Descriptions may be of objects, of places, of animals, and of persons.
The complete description of an object may be said to consist of the
following elements:

    1. When, where, and how seen; when made or found; how affected by

    2. History and traditional associations.

    3. Substance and manner of origin.

    4. Size, shape, and appearance.

    5. Analogies with similar objects.

    6. Sensations produced by contemplating it.

    7. Its purpose or function.

    8. Its effects--the results of its existence.

Descriptions of places must of course vary with the type of the place.
Of natural scenery, the following elements are notable:

    1. How beheld--at dawn, noon, evening, or night; by starlight or

    2. Natural features--flat or hilly; barren or thickly grown; kind of
    vegetation; trees, mountains, and rivers.

    3. Works of man--cultivation, edifices, bridges; modifications of
    scenery produced by man.

    4. Inhabitants and other forms of animal life.

    5. Local customs and traditions.

    6. Sounds--of water; forest; leaves; birds; barnyards; human beings;

    7. View--prospect on every side, and the place itself as seen from

    8. Analogies to other scenes, especially famous scenes.

    9. History and associations.

    10. Sensations produced by contemplating it.

Descriptions of animals may be analyzed thus:

    1. Species and size.

    2. Covering.

    3. Parts.

    4. Abode.

    5. Characteristics and habits.

    6. Food.

    7. Utility or harmfulness.

    8. History and associations.

Descriptions of persons can be infinitely varied. Sometimes a single
felicitous touch brings out the whole type and character, as when the
modern author Leonard Merrick hints at shabby gentility by mentioning
the combination of a frock coat with the trousers of a tweed suit.
Suggestion is very powerful in this field, especially when mental
qualities are to be delineated. Treatment should vary with the author's
object; whether to portray a mere personified idea, or to give a quasi
photographic view, mental and physical, of some vividly living
character. In a general description, the following elements may be

    1. Appearance, stature, complexion, proportions, features.

    2. Most conspicuous feature.

    3. Expression.

    4. Grace or ugliness.

    5. Attire--nature, taste, quality.

    6. Habits, attainments, graces, or awkwardnesses.

    7. Character--moral and intellectual--place in the community.

    8. Notable special qualities.

In considering the preceding synopses, the reader must remember that
they are only suggestions, and not for =literal= use. The extent of any
description is to be determined by its place in the composition; by
taste and fitness. It should be added, that in fiction description must
not be carried to excess. A plethora of it leads to dulness, so that it
must ever be balanced by a brisk flow of =Narration=, which we are about
to consider.


Narration is an account of action, or of successive events, either real
or imagined; and is therefore the basis both of history and of fiction.
To be felicitous and successful, it demands an intelligent exercise of
taste and discrimination; salient points must be selected, and the order
of time and of circumstances must be well maintained. It is deemed
wisest in most cases to give narratives a climactic form; leading from
lesser to greater events, and culminating in that chief incident upon
which the story is primarily founded, or which makes the other parts
important through its own importance. This principle, of course, cannot
be literally followed in all historical and biographical narratives.

Fictional Narration

The essential point of fictional narration is =plot=, which may be
defined as a =sequence of incidents designed to awaken the reader's
interest and curiosity as to the result=. Plots may be simple or
complex; but suspense, and climactic progress from one incident to
another, are essential. Every incident in a fictional work should have
some bearing on the climax or denouement, and any denouement which is
not the inevitable result of the preceding incidents is awkward and
unliterary. No formal course in fiction-writing can equal a close and
observant perusal of the stories of Edgar Allan Poe or Ambrose Bierce.
In these masterpieces one may find that unbroken sequence and linkage of
incident and result which mark the ideal tale. Observe how, in "The Fall
of the House of Usher," each separate event foreshadows and leads up to
the tremendous catastrophe and its hideous suggestion. Poe was an
absolute master of the mechanics of his craft. Observe also how Bierce
can attain the most stirring denouements from a few simple happenings;
denouements which develop purely from these preceding circumstances.

In fictional narration, verisimilitude is absolutely essential. A story
must be consistent and must contain no event glaringly removed from the
usual order of things, unless that event is the main incident, and is
approached with the most careful preparation. In real life, odd and
erratic things do occasionally happen; but they are out of place in an
ordinary story, since fiction is a sort of idealization of the average.
Development should be as lifelike as possible, and a weak, trickling
conclusion should be assiduously avoided. The end of a story must be
stronger rather than weaker than the beginning; since it is the end
which contains the denouement or culmination, and which will leave the
strongest impression upon the reader. It would not be amiss for the
novice to write the last paragraph of his story first, once a synopsis
of the plot has been carefully prepared--as it always should be. In this
way he will be able to concentrate his freshest mental vigour upon the
most important part of his narrative; and if any changes be later found
needful, they can easily be made. In no part of a narrative should a
grand or emphatic thought or passage be followed by one of tame or
prosaic quality. This is =anticlimax=, and exposes a writer to much
ridicule. Notice the absurd effect of the following couplet--which was,
however, written by no less a person than Waller:

    "Under the tropic is our language spoke,
    =And part of Flanders hath receiv'd our yoke=."

Unity, Mass, Coherence

In developing a theme, whether descriptive or narrative, it is necessary
that three structural qualities be present: Unity, Mass, and Coherence.
Unity is that principle whereby every part of a composition must have
some bearing on the central theme. It is the principle which excludes
all extraneous matter, and demands that all threads converge toward the
climax. Classical violations of Unity may be found in the =episodes= of
Homer and other epic poets of antiquity, as well as in the digressions
of Fielding and other celebrated novelists; but no beginner should
venture to emulate such liberties. Unity is the quality we have lately
noted and praised in Poe and Bierce.

Mass is that principle which requires the more important parts of a
composition to occupy correspondingly important places in the whole
composition, the paragraph, and the sentence. It is that law of taste
which insists that emphasis be placed where emphasis is due, and is most
strikingly embodied in the previously mentioned necessity for an
emphatic ending. According to this law, the end of a composition is its
most important part, with the beginning next in importance.

Coherence is that principle which groups related parts together and
keeps unrelated parts removed from one another. It applies, like Mass,
to the whole composition, the paragraph, or the sentence. It demands
that kindred events be narrated without interruption, effect following
cause in a steady flow.

Forms of Composition

Few writers succeed equally in all the various branches of literature.
Each type of thought has its own particular form of expression, based on
natural appropriateness; and the average author tends to settle into
that form which best fits his particular personality. Many, however,
follow more than one form; and some writers change from one form to
another as advancing years produce alterations in their mental processes
or points of view.

It is well, in the interests of breadth and discipline, for the beginner
to exercise himself to some degree in every form of literary art. He may
thus discover that which best fits his mind, and develop hitherto
unsuspected potentialities.

We have so far surveyed only those simpler phases of writing which
centre in prose fiction and descriptive essays. Hereafter we hope to
touch upon didactic, argumentative, and persuasive writing; to
investigate to some extent the sources of rhetorical strength and
elegance; and to consider a few major aspects of versification.


For What Does the United Stand?

It is easy to comply in 500 words with a request for an article on what
the United represents. An amateur journalistic association is generally
too democratic to have any one object for long; it is rather a
battle-ground between the proponents of opposed ideas.

I think, however, that since the dawn of the Hoffman administration,
when the best elements were automatically sifted out through the
secession of most of the confirmed politicians, we have been gradually
acquiring a policy and a tradition which will endure. The
printing-press, political and frivolous phases have been passed through;
and our aspirations seem to be crystallising into a form more worthy
than any of our past aspirations.

Judging from the majority of our truly active members, the United now
aims at the development of its adherents in the direction of purely
artistic literary perception and expression; to be effected by the
encouragement of writing, the giving of constructive criticism, and the
cultivation of correspondence friendships among scholars and aspirants
capable of stimulating and aiding one another's efforts. It aims at the
revival of the uncommercial spirit; the real creative thought which
modern conditions have done their worst to suppress and eradicate. It
seeks to banish mediocrity as a goal and standard; to place before its
members the classical and the universal and to draw their minds from the
commonplace to the beautiful.

The United aims to assist those whom other forms of literary influence
cannot reach. The non-university man, the dwellers in distant places,
the recluse, the invalid, the very young, the elderly; all these are
included within our scope. And beside our novices stand persons of
mature cultivation and experience, ready to assist for the sheer joy of
assisting. In no other society does wealth or previous learning count
for so little. Merit and aspiration form the only criterion we apply to
our members, nor has poverty or primitive crudity ever retarded the
steady progress of any determined aspirant among us. We ask only that
the goal be high; that the souls of our band be seeking the antique
legacy of verdant Helicon.

Practically, we are aware of many obstacles; yet we think we are in the
main fulfilling our functions. Naturally, we do not expect to make a
Shelley or Swinburne of every rhymer who joins us, or a Poe or Dunsany
of every teller of tales; but if we enable these persons to appreciate
Shelley and Swinburne and Poe and Dunsany, and teach them how to shed
their dominant faults and use words correctly and expressively, we
cannot call ourselves unsuccessful and only genius can lead to the
heights; it is our province merely to point the way and assist on the
gentler, lower slopes.

The United, then, stands for education in the eternal truths of literary
art, and for personal aid in the realisation of its members' literary
potentialities. It is a university, stripped of every artificiality and
conventionality, and thrown open to all without distinction. Here may
every man shine according to his genius, and here may the small as well
as the great writer know the bliss of appreciation and the glory of
recognised achievement.

                                                      H. P. LOVECRAFT.

                   THE UNITED AMATEUR

 Official Organ of the United Amateur Press Association


Poetry and the Gods


A damp, gloomy evening in April it was, just after the close of the
Great War, when Marcia found herself alone with strange thoughts and
wishes; unheard-of yearnings which floated out of the spacious
twentieth-century drawing-room, up the misty deeps of the air, and
Eastward to far olive-groves in Arcady which she had seen only in her
dreams. She had entered the room in abstraction, turned off the glaring
chandeliers, and now reclined on a soft divan by a solitary lamp which
shed over the reading table a green glow as soothing and delicious as
moonlight through the foliage about an antique shrine. Attired simply,
in a low-cut evening dress of black, she appeared outwardly a typical
product of modern civilisation; but tonight she felt the immeasurable
gulf that separated her soul from all her prosaic surroundings. Was it
because of the strange home in which she lived; that abode of coldness
where relations were always strained and the inmates scarcely more than
strangers? Was it that, or was it some greater and less explicable
misplacement in Time and Space, whereby she had been born too late, too
early, or too far away from the haunts of her spirit ever to harmonise
with the unbeautiful things of contemporary reality? To dispel the mood
which was engulfing her more deeply each moment, she took a magazine
from the table and searched for some healing bit of poetry. Poetry had
always relieved her troubled mind better than anything else, though many
things in the poetry she had seen detracted from the influence. Over
parts of even the sublimest verses hung a chill vapour of sterile
ugliness and restraint, like dust on a window-pane through which one
views a magnificent sunset.

Listlessly turning the magazine's pages, as if searching for an elusive
treasure, she suddenly came upon something which dispelled her languor.
An observer could have read her thoughts and told that she had
discovered some image or dream which brought her nearer to her
unattained goal than any image or dream she had seen before. It was only
a bit of _vers libre_, that pitiful compromise of the poet who overleaps
prose yet falls short of the divine melody of numbers; but it had in it
all the unstudied music of a bard who lives and feels, and who gropes
ecstatically for unveiled beauty. Devoid of regularity, it yet had the
wild harmony of winged, spontaneous words; a harmony missing from the
formal, convention-bound verse she had known. As she read on, her
surroundings gradually faded, and soon there lay about her only the
mists of dream; the purple, star-strown mists beyond Time, where only
gods and dreamers walk.

    "Moon over Japan,
    White butterfly moon!
    Where the heavy-lidded Buddhas dream
    To the sound of the cuckoo's call....
    The white wings of moon-butterflies
    Flicker down the streets of the city,
    Blushing into darkness the useless wicks of round lanterns in the
            hands of girls.

    "Moon over the tropics,
    A white-curved bud
    Opening its petals slowly in the warmth of heaven....
    The air is full of odours
    And languorous warm sounds....
    A flute drones its insect music to the night
    Below the curving moon-petal of the heavens.

    "Moon over China,
    Weary moon on the river of the sky,
    The stir of light in the willows is like the flashing of a thousand
            silver minnows
    Through dark shoals;
    The tiles on graves and rotting temples flash like ripples,
    The sky is flecked with clouds like the scales of a dragon."

Amid the mists of dream the reader cried to the rhythmical stars of her
delight at the coming of a new age of song, a rebirth of Pan. Half
closing her eyes, she repeated words whose melody lay hid like crystals
at the bottom of a stream before the dawn; hidden but to gleam
effulgently at the birth of day.

    "Moon over Japan,
    White butterfly moon!

    "Moon over the tropics,
    A white-curved bud
    Opening its petals slowly in the warmth of heaven.
    The air is full of odours
    And languorous warm sounds ... languorous warm sounds.

    "Moon over China,
    Weary moon on the river of the sky ... weary moon!"

       *       *       *

Out of the mists gleamed godlike the figure of a youth in winged helmet
and sandals, caduceus-bearing, and of a beauty like to nothing on earth.
Before the face of the sleeper he thrice waved the rod which Apollo had
given him in trade for the nine-corded shell of melody, and upon her
brow he placed a wreath of myrtle and roses. Then, adoring, Hermes

"O Nymph more fair than the golden-haired sisters of Cyane or the
sky-inhabiting Atlantides, beloved of Aphrodite and blessed of Pallas,
thou hast indeed discovered the secret of the Gods, which lieth in
beauty and song. O Prophetess more lovely than the Sybil of Cumae when
Apollo first knew her, thou hast truly spoken of the new age, for even
now on Maenalus, Pan sighs and stretches in his sleep, wishful to awake
and behold about him the little rose-crowned Fauns and the antique
Satyrs. In thy yearning hast thou divined what no mortal else, saving
only a few whom the world reject, remembereth; _that the Gods were never
dead_, but only sleeping the sleep and dreaming the dreams of Gods in
lotos-filled Hesperian gardens beyond the golden sunset. And now draweth
nigh the time of their awaking, when coldness and ugliness shall perish,
and Zeus sit once more on Olympus. Already the sea about Paphos
trembleth into a foam which only ancient skies have looked on before,
and at night on Helicon the shepherds hear strange murmurings and
half-remembered notes. Woods and fields are tremulous at twilight with
the shimmering of white saltant forms, and immemorial Ocean yields up
curious sights beneath thin moons. The Gods are patient, and have slept
long, but neither man nor giant shall defy the Gods forever. In Tartarus
the Titans writhe, and beneath the fiery Aetna groan the children of
Uranus and Gaea. The day now dawns when man must answer for his
centuries of denial, but in sleeping the Gods have grown kind, and will
not hurl him to the gulf made for deniers of Gods. Instead will their
vengeance smite the darkness, fallacy and ugliness which have turned the
mind of man; and under the sway of bearded Saturnus shall mortals, once
more sacrificing unto him, dwell in beauty and delight. This night shalt
thou know the favour of the Gods, and behold on Parnassus those dreams
which the Gods have through ages sent to Earth to show that they are not
dead. For poets are the dreams of the Gods, and in each age someone hath
sung unknowing the message and the promise from the lotos-gardens beyond
the sunset."

Then in his arms Hermes bore the dreaming maiden through the skies.
Gentle breezes from the tower of Aiolos wafted them high above warm,
scented seas, till suddenly they came upon Zeus holding court on the
double-headed Parnassus; his golden throne flanked by Apollo and the
Muses on the right hand, and by ivy-wreathed Dionysus and
pleasure-flushed Bacchae on the left hand. So much of splendour Marcia
had never seen before, either awake or in dreams, but its radiance did
her no injury, as would have the radiance of lofty Olympus; for in this
lesser court the Father of Gods had tempered his glories for the sight
of mortals. Before the laurel-draped mouth of the Corycian cave sat in a
row six noble forms with the aspect of mortals, but the countenances of
Gods. These the dreamer recognised from images of them which she had
beheld, and she knew that they were none else than the divine Maeonides,
the Avernian Dante, the more than mortal Shakespeare, the
chaos-exploring Milton, the cosmic Goethe, and the Musaean Keats. These
were those messengers whom the Gods had sent to tell men that Pan had
passed not away, but only slept; for it is in poetry that Gods speak to
men. Then spake the Thunderer:

"O daughter, for, being one of my endless line, thou art indeed my
daughter, behold upon ivory thrones of honour the august messengers that
Gods have sent down, that in the words and the writings of men there may
still be some trace of divine beauty. Other bards have men justly
crowned with enduring laurels, but these hath Apollo crowned, and these
have I set in places apart, as mortals who have spoken the language of
the Gods. Long have we dreamed in lotos-gardens beyond the West, and
spoken only through our dreams; but the time approaches when our voices
shall not be silent. It is a time of awaking and of change. Once more
hath Phaeton ridden low, searing the fields and drying the streams. In
Gaul lone nymphs with disordered hair weep beside fountains that are no
more, and pine over rivers turned red with the blood of mortals. Ares
and his train have gone forth with the madness of Gods, and have
returned, Deimos and Phobos glutted with unnatural delight. Tellus moans
with grief, and the faces of men are as the faces of the Erinyes, even
as when Astraea fled to the skies, and the waves of our bidding
encompassed all the land saving this high peak alone. Amidst this chaos,
prepared to herald his coming yet to conceal his arrival, even now
toileth our latest-born messenger, in whose dreams are all the images
which other messengers have dreamed before him. He it is that we have
chosen to blend into one glorious whole all the beauty that the world
hath known before, and to write words wherein shall echo all the wisdom
and the loveliness of the past. He it is who shall proclaim our return,
and sing of the days to come when Fauns and Dryads shall haunt their
accustomed groves in beauty. Guided was our choice by those who now sit
before the Corycian grotto on thrones of ivory, and in whose songs thou
shalt hear notes of sublimity by which years hence thou shall know the
greater messenger when he cometh. Attend their voices as one by one they
sing to thee here. Each note shalt thou hear again in the poetry which
is to come; the poetry which shall bring peace and pleasure to thy soul,
though search for it through bleak years thou must. Attend with
diligence, for each chord that vibrates away into hiding shall appear
again to thee after thou hast returned to earth, as Alpheus, sinking his
waters into the soil of Hellas, appears as the crystal Arethusa in
remote Sicilia."

Then arose Homeros, the ancient among bards, who took his lyre and
chaunted his hymn to Aphrodite. No word of Greek did Marcia know, yet
did the message fall not vainly upon her ears; for in the cryptic rhythm
was that which spake to all mortals and Gods, and needed no interpreter.

So too the songs of Dante and Goethe, whose unknown words clave the
ether with melodies easy to read and to adore. But at last remembered
accents rebounded before the listener. It was the Swan of Avon, once a
God among men, and still a God among Gods:

    "Write, write, that from the bloody course of war,
    My dearest master, your dear son, may hie;
    Bless him at home in peace, whilst I from far,
    His name with zealous fervour sanctify."

Accents still more familiar arose as Milton, blind no more, declaimed
immortal harmony:

    "Or let my lamp at midnight hour
    Be seen in some high lonely tower,
    Where I might oft outwatch the Bear
    With thrice-great Hermes, or unsphere
    The spirit of Plato, to unfold
    What worlds or what vast regions hold
    Th' immortal mind, that hath forsook
    Her mansion in this fleshy nook.
              ∑       ∑       ∑
    Sometime let gorgeous Tragedy
    In sceptred pall come sweeping by,
    Presenting Thebes, or Pelops' line,
    Or the tale of Troy divine."

Last of all came the young voice of Keats, closest of all the messengers
to the beauteous faun-folk.

    "Heard melodies are sweet, but those unheard
    Are sweeter: therefore, ye soft pipes, play on....
              ∑       ∑       ∑
    When old age shall this generation waste,
    Thou shalt remain, in midst of other woe
    Than ours, a friend to man, to whom thou say'st,
    'Beauty is truth, truth beauty'--that is all
    Ye know on earth, and all ye need to know."

As the singer ceased, there came a sound in the wind blowing from far
Egypt, where at night Aurora mourns by the Nile for her slain son
Memnon. To the feet of the Thunderer flew the rosy-fingered Goddess, and
kneeling, cried, "Master, it is time I unlocked the gates of the East."
And Phoebus, handing his lyre to Calliope, his bride among the Muses,
prepared to depart for the jewelled and column-raised Palace of the Sun,
where fretted the steeds already harnessed to the golden car of day. So
Zeus descended from his carven throne and placed his hand upon the head
of Marcia, saying:

"Daughter, the dawn is nigh, and it is well that thou shouldst return
before the awaking of mortals to thy home. Weep not at the bleakness of
thy life, for the shadow of false faiths will soon be gone, and the Gods
shall once more walk among men. Search thou unceasingly for our
messenger, for in him wilt thou find peace and comfort. By his word
shall thy steps be guided to happiness, and in his dreams of beauty
shall thy spirit find all that it craveth." As Zeus ceased, the young
Hermes gently seized the maiden and bore her up toward the fading stars;
up, and westward over unseen seas.

       *       *       *

Many years have passed since Marcia dreamt of the Gods and of their
Parnassian conclave. Tonight she sits in the same spacious drawing-room,
but she is not alone. Gone is the old spirit of unrest, for beside her
is one whose name is luminous with celebrity; the young poet of poets at
whose feet sits all the world. He is reading from a manuscript words
which none has ever heard before, but which when heard will bring to men
the dreams and fancies they lost so many centuries ago, when Pan lay
down to doze in Arcady, and the greater Gods withdrew to sleep in
lotos-gardens beyond the lands of the Hesperides. In the subtle cadences
and hidden melodies of the bard the spirit of the maiden has found rest
at last, for there echo the divinest notes of Thracian Orpheus; notes
that moved the very rocks and trees by Hebrus' banks. The singer ceases,
and with eagerness asks a verdict, yet what can Marcia say but that the
strain is "fit for the Gods"?

And as she speaks there comes again a vision of Parnassus and the
far-off sound of a mighty voice saying, "By his word shall thy steps be
guided to happiness, and in his dreams of beauty shall thy spirit find
all that it craveth."

       *       *       *       *       *

Mr. Paul J. Campbell deserves the most unstinted thanks of the United
this year, for besides serving as First Vice-President he has furnished
free of charge a supply of recruiting booklets and application blanks,
thus relieving us of one of our most onerous burdens. Mr. Campbell's
eighteen years of undiminished devotion to amateurdom form a thing
worthy of emulation.




Nyarlathotep ... the crawling chaos ... I am the last ... I will tell
the audient void....

I do not recall distinctly when it began, but it was months ago. The
general tension was horrible. To a season of political and social
upheaval was added a strange and brooding apprehension of hideous
physical danger; a danger widespread and all-embracing, such a danger as
may be imagined only in the most terrible phantasms of the night. I
recall that the people went about with pale and worried faces, and
whispered warnings and prophecies which no one dared consciously repeat
or acknowledge to himself that he had heard. A sense of monstrous guilt
was upon the land, and out of the abysses between the stars swept chill
currents that made men shiver in dark and lonely places. There was a
demoniac alteration in the sequence of the seasons--the autumn heat
lingered fearsomely, and everyone felt that the world and perhaps the
universe had passed from the control of known gods or forces to that of
gods or forces which were unknown.

And it was then that Nyarlathotep came out of Egypt. Who he was, none
could tell, but he was of the old native blood and looked like a
Pharaoh. The fellahin knelt when they saw him, yet could not say why. He
said he had risen up out of the blackness of twenty-seven centuries, and
that he had heard messages from places not on this planet. Into the
lands of civilisation came Nyarlathotep, swarthy, slender, and sinister,
always buying strange instruments of glass and metal and combining them
into instruments yet stranger. He spoke much of the sciences--of
electricity and psychology--and gave exhibitions of power which sent his
spectators away speechless, yet which swelled his fame to exceeding
magnitude. Men advised one another to see Nyarlathotep, and shuddered.
And where Nyarlathotep went, rest vanished; for the small hours were
rent with the screams of nightmare. Never before had the screams of
nightmare been such a public problem; now the wise men almost wished
they could forbid sleep in the small hours, that the shrieks of cities
might less horribly disturb the pale, pitying moon as it glimmered on
green waters gliding under bridges, and old steeples crumbling against a
sickly sky.

I remember when Nyarlathotep came to my city--the great, the old, the
terrible city of unnumbered crimes. My friend had told me of him, and of
the impelling fascination and allurement of his revelations, and I
burned with eagerness to explore his uttermost mysteries. My friend said
they were horrible and impressive beyond my most fevered imaginings;
that what was thrown on a screen in the darkened room prophesied things
none but Nyarlathotep dare prophesy, and that in the sputter of his
sparks there was taken from men that which had never been taken before
yet which shewed only in the eyes. And I heard it hinted abroad that
those who knew Nyarlathotep looked on sights which others saw not.

It was in the hot autumn that I went through the night with the restless
crowds to see Nyarlathotep; through the stifling night and up the
endless stairs into the choking room. And shadowed on a screen, I saw
hooded forms amidst ruins, and yellow evil faces peering from behind
fallen monuments. And I saw the world battling against blackness;
against the waves of destruction from ultimate space; whirling,
churning; struggling around the dimming, cooling sun. Then the sparks
played amazingly around the heads of the spectators, and hair stood up
on end whilst shadows more grotesque than I can tell came out and
squatted on the heads. And when I, who was colder and more scientific
than the rest, mumbled a trembling protest about "imposture" and "static
electricity," Nyarlathotep drave us all out, down the dizzy stairs into
the damp, hot, deserted midnight streets. I screamed aloud that I was
_not_ afraid; that I never could be afraid; and others screamed with me
for solace. We sware to one another that the city _was_ exactly the
same, and still alive; and when the electric lights began to fade we
cursed the company over and over again, and laughed at the queer faces
we made.

I believe we felt something coming down from the greenish moon, for when
we began to depend on its light we drifted into curious involuntary
marching formations and seemed to know our destinations though we dared
not think of them. Once we looked at the pavement and found the blocks
loose and displaced by grass, with scarce a line of rusted metal to show
where the tramways had run. And again we saw a tram-car, lone,
windowless, dilapidated, and almost on its side. When we gazed around
the horizon, we could not find the third tower by the river, and noticed
that the silhouette of the second tower was ragged at the top. Then we
split up into narrow columns, each of which seemed drawn in a different
direction. One disappeared in a narrow alley to the left, leaving only
the echo of a shocking moan. Another filed down a weed-choked subway
entrance, howling with a laughter that was mad. My own column was sucked
toward the open country, and presently felt a chill which was not of the
hot autumn: for as we stalked out on the dark moor, we beheld around us
the hellish moon-glitter of evil snows. Trackless, inexplicable snows,
swept asunder in one direction only, where lay a gulf all the blacker
for its glittering walls. The column seemed very thin indeed as it
plodded dreamily into the gulf. I lingered behind, for the black rift in
the green-litten snow was frightful, and I thought I had heard the
reverberations of a disquieting wail as my companions vanished; but my
power to linger was slight. As if beckoned by those who had gone before,
I half-floated between the titanic snowdrifts, quivering and afraid,
into the sightless vortex of the unimaginable.

Screamingly sentient, dumbly delirious, only the gods that were can
tell. A sickened, sensitive shadow writhing in hands that are not hands,
and whirled blindly past ghastly midnights of rotting creation, corpses
of dead worlds with sores that were cities, charnel winds that brush the
pallid stars and make them flicker low. Beyond the worlds vague ghosts
of monstrous things; half-seen columns of unsanctified temples that rest
on nameless rocks beneath space and reach up to dizzy vacua above the
spheres of light and darkness. And through this revolving graveyard of
the universe the muffled, maddening beating of drums, and thin,
monotonous whine of blasphemous flutes from inconceivable, unlighted
chambers beyond Time; the detestable pounding and piping whereunto dance
slowly, awkwardly and absurdly the gigantic, tenebrous ultimate
gods--the blind, voiceless, mindless gargoyles whose soul is


Editorial comment upon amateur journalism generally falls within one of
two classes; complacent self-congratulation upon a mythical perfection,
or hectic urging toward impossible achievements. It is our purpose this
month to indulge in neither of these rhetorical recreations, but to make
one very prosaic and practical appeal which springs solely from
realistic observation.

This appeal concerns the official situation in the United. For several
years our foes have reproached us for excessive centralisation of
authority: asserting that the control of our society is anything from
oligarchical to monarchial, and pointing to the large amount of
influence wielded by a very few leaders. Denials on our part, prompted
by the conspicuous absence of any dictatorial ambitions in the minds of
our executives, have been largely nullified by the fact that while power
has not been autocratically usurped and arbitrarily exercised, the
burden of administrative work has certainly been thrust by common
consent on a small number of reluctant though loyal shoulders. A few
persons have been forced to retain authority because no others have
arisen to relieve them of their burdens, until official nominations have
come to mean no more than a campaign by one or two active spirits to
persuade certain patient drudges to "carry on" another year. Nor does
the formal official situation reflect all of the prevailing condition.
Much of the Association's most important activity, such as recruiting,
welcoming and criticism, verges into the field of unorganised effort;
and here the tendency to leave everything to a narrow group is

Obviously, this condition demands a remedy; and that remedy lies in one
direction only--an acceptance of potential official responsibility by
all of those members who possess the time and experience to act as
leaders. As the fiscal year progresses, the season for candidacies draws
near; and amateurs who feel competent to sustain their share of the
administrative burden should come forward as nominees, or at least
should respond when approached by their friends. That office-holding
involves tedious work, all admit, but this tedium is a small enough
price to pay for the varied boons of amateurdom. In unofficial labour an
equal willingness should be shown. Why is it that all the private
revision in the United is performed by about three men at most, despite
the presence in our ranks of a full score of scholars abundantly capable
of rendering such service? If the _literati_ as a whole will not awaken
to the needs of the day, one of two things will occur. The United will
stagnate quietly under the perpetual dictatorship of a limited group of
unwilling but benevolent autocrats, or it will succumb to the onslaught
of some political clique of vigorous barbarians who will destroy in a
month what it has taken the United over ten years to build up. Memories
of 1919 should prove to us the reality of such a danger of sudden

Our appeal, then, is for responsible candidates for high office, and for
volunteers in the work of maintaining interest and lending literary aid.
We know that executive energy and enthusiasm tend to be more abundant in
the Goth than in the Greek; that those best qualified to serve are
generally least moved by political ambition. But we are sure that the
needs of our society should arouse enough sense of duty among its
cultivated membership to draw to the front a new generation of leaders.
We ask for new presidential and editorial candidates who are prepared to
serve faithfully and independently if elected; for new critics and
recruiters who understand our traditions and are willing to expend
energy in upholding and diffusing them. Shall 1921 bring them to light?

                                                     --H. P. LOVECRAFT

Official Organ Fund


 Woodbee Press Club                         $25.00
 From Treasurer, up to October 15            23.00
 Susan Nelson Furgerson                       6.00
 Jonathan E. Hoag                             5.00
 Verna McGeoch (for each issue)               5.00
 Howard R. Conover                            3.00
 Victor O. Schwab                             3.00
 Mr. and Mrs. Fritter (for each issue)        2.00
 Rev. Eugene B. Kuntz                         1.50
 Anne Tillery Renshaw                         1.50
 Anonymous                                     .25
 _One dollar each_: Margaret Abraham,
   Agnes R. Arnold, Elizabeth Barnhart,
   Grace M. Bromley, Mary Faye Durr,
   Alice M. Hamlet, Hester Harper.
 Total on hand, November 6, 1920            $82.25


The doubling of printing rates makes large contributions imperative if
the Organ is to approach its customary standard. Acknowledgments are due
the Woodbee Press Club for its exceedingly generous contribution, and
ex-Editor Renshaw for the mailing of an appeal which has proved most
effective in the campaign for funds. Emulation of the Woodbees'
generosity by other clubs would save a situation which is very

                                                  H. P. LOVECRAFT,



Providence, R. I., April 1, 1921.


 From Treasurer, up to April 1, 1921        $21.50
 Verna McGeoch (3 instalments)               15.00
 E. Edward Ericson                           10.00
 Edward F. Daas                               6.00
 Howard R. Conover                            2.00
 Anna H. Crofts                               1.00
 Ernest L. McKeag                             1.00
 John Milton Samples                          1.00
 Anonymous                                     .75
 Balance on Hand, November 6, 1920          $82.25
 Received, November 6, 1920, to April
   1, 1921                                   58.25
                       Total Receipts      $140.50


 To E. E. Ericson, for September U. A.      $48.00
 To E. E. Ericson, for November U. A.        48.00
 To E. E. Ericson, for January U. A.         36.00
                   Total Expenditures      $132.00

 Balance on Hand, April 1, 1921              $8.50

                            H. P. LOVECRAFT,


Winifred Virginia Jackson: A "Different" Poetess


In these days of unrestrained license in poetry, it would at first sight
seem difficult to single out any one bard as the possessor of ideas and
modes of expression so unique and original that the overworked adjective
"different" is merited. Every poetaster of the modern school claims to
be "different," and bases his claim to celebrity upon this "difference";
an effect usually achieved by the adoption of a harsh, amorphous style,
and a tone of analytical, introspective subjectivity so individual that
all the common and universal elements of beauty and poetry are excluded.
Indeed, eccentricity has come so completely into fashion, that he who
follows up the wildest vagaries is actually the least different from the
hectic scribbling throng about him.

But notwithstanding this malady of the times, there does remain among us
an ample field for genius and artistic distinctiveness. The laws of
human thought are unchangeable, and whenever there is born a soul
attuned to real harmony, and inspired by that rare sensitiveness which
enables it to feel and express the latent beauty and hidden
relationships of Nature, the world receives a new poet. Such an one will
of necessity break through the decadent customs of the period; and
falling back to the forms of true melody, sing a spontaneous song which
can not help being original, because it represents the unforced reaction
of a keen and delicate mind to the panorama of life. And when this
reaction is enabled to bring out in the simplest and most beautiful
style fancies and images which the world has not received or noted
before, we are justified in claiming that the bard is "different."

Such a bard is Winifred Virginia Jackson, whose poetry has for six years
been the pride of the United Amateur Press Association. Born in Maine,
and through childhood accustomed to the mystical spell of the ancient
New-England countryside, Miss Jackson for a long period quietly and
unconsciously absorbed a prodigious store of beauty and phantasy from
life. Having no design to become a poet, she accepted these ethereal
gifts as a matter of course; until about a decade ago they manifested
themselves in a burst of spontaneous melody which can best be described
as a sheer overflowing of delightful dreams and pictures from a mind
filled to the brim with poetic loveliness. Since that time Miss Jackson
has written vast quantities of verse; always rich and musical, and if
one may speak in paradox, always artless with supreme art. None of these
poems is in any sense premeditated or consciously composed; they are
more like visions of the fancy, instantaneously photographed for the
perception of others, and unerringly framed in the most appropriate
metrical medium.

When we peruse the poetry of Miss Jackson we are impressed first by its
amazing variety, and almost as quickly by a certain distinctive quality
which gives all the varied specimens a kind of homogeneity. As we
analyse our impressions, we find that both of these qualities have a
common source--the complete objectivity and almost magical imagination
of supreme genius. Objectivity and imagination, the gifts of the epic
bards of classical antiquity, are today the rarest of blessings. We live
in an age of morbid emotion and introspectiveness; wherein the poets,
such as they are, have sunk to the level of mere pathologists engaged in
the dissection of their own ultra-sophisticated spirits. The fresh touch
of Nature is lost to the majority, and rhymesters rant endlessly and
realistically about the relation of man to his fellows and to himself;
overlooking the real foundations of art and beauty--wonder, and man's
relation to the unknown cosmos. But Miss Jackson is not of the majority,
and has not overlooked these things. In her the ancient and unspoiled
bard is refulgently reincarnated; and with an amazing universality and
freedom from self-consciousness she suppresses the ego completely,
delineating Nature's diverse moods and aspects with an impersonal
fidelity and delicacy which form the delight of the discriminating
reader, and the despair of the stupid critic who works by rule and
formula rather than by brain. There is no medium which the spirit of
Miss Jackson can not inhabit. The same mind which reflects the daintiest
and most gorgeous phantasies of the faery world, or furnishes the most
finely wrought pictures or refined pathos and sentiment, can abruptly
take up its abode in some remote Maine timber region and pour out such a
wild, virile chantey of the woods and the river that we seem to glimpse
the singer as the huskiest of a tangle-bearded, fight-scarred,
loud-shouting logging crew sprawling about a pine campfire.

A critic has grouped the poetical work of Miss Jackson into six classes:
Lyrics of ideal beauty, including delightful Nature-poems replete with
local colour; delicate amatory lyrics; rural dialect lyrics and vigorous
colloquial pieces; poems of sparkling optimism; child verse; and poems
of potent terror and dark suggestion. "With her," he adds, "sordid
realism has no place; and her poems glow with a subtle touch of the
fanciful and the supernatural which is well sustained by tasteful and
unusual word-combinations, images, and onomatopoetic effects." This
estimate is confirmed by the latest productions of the poetess, as we
shall endeavour to show by certain specimens lately published or about
to be published, selected almost at random:

"The Bonnet" is a characteristic bit of Jacksonian delicacy and
originality. We here behold a sustained metaphor of that striking type
which the author so frequently creates; a metaphor which draws on all
Nature and the unseen world for its basis, and whose analogies are just
the ones which please us most, yet which our own minds are never finely
attuned enough to conceive unaided. The swain in the poem tells of his
intention to make a bonnet for his chosen nymph to wear. He will fashion
it with "golden thimble, scissors, needle, thread"; taking velvet from
the April sky as a groundwork, stars for trimming, moonlight for
banding, and a web of dreams for lining. He will scent it with the
perfume of "the reddest rose that the singing wind finds sweetest where
it farthest blows," and "will take it at the twilight for his love to
wear." Here we have nothing of the bizarre or the conspicuous, yet in
the six little stanzas of quaintly regular metre there is suggested all
of that world of faery beauty which the eye can glimpse beyond the
leaden clouds of reality; a world which exists because it can be dreamed
of. The poem is "different" in the truest way; it is original because it
conveys beauty originally in an inconspicuous and harmonious vehicle.

But turn now to "Ellsworth to Great Pond" and marvel! True, we still
find the vivid delineation of human feelings, but what a distance we
have travelled! Gone is the young dreamer with his world of moonshine,
for here roars the Maine lumberjack with all the uncouth vigour and rude
natural expressiveness of the living satyr. It is life; primal,
uncovered, and unpolished--the ebullient, shouting vitality of healthy

    "Drink hard cider, swig hard cider,
      Swill hard cider, Boys!
    Throw yer spikers, throw yer peavies,
      Beller out yer noise!"

We have drifted from the aether of Keats to the earth of Fielding, yet
under the guidance of the same author. Greater proof of Miss Jackson's
absolute objectivity and marvellous imagination could not be produced or

Yet who shall say that the Jackson pendulum is powerful only at the
extremes of its sweeping arc? In "Workin' Out" we discover a pastoral
love-lyric which for quaintness and graphic humanness could not well be
surpassed. Here the distinctive and spontaneous inventiveness of Miss
Jackson's fancy is displayed with especial vividness. The rural youth,
"workin' out" far from his loved Molly, enumerates the prosaic chores he
can perform with easy heart; but mentions in each case some more poetic
thing which stirs his emotions and gives him loneliness for the absent
fair. He can cut and husk corn, but the golden-rod reminds him of his
Molly's golden hair. He can milk cows, but the gentian reminds him of
his Molly's blue eyes. Aside from their intrinsic ingeniousness, these
images possess an unconscious lesson for the poet who can read it. They
expose with concrete illustrations the fallacy of the so-called "new
poetry," which disregards the natural division between beautiful and
unbeautiful things and rhapsodises as effusively over a sewer-pipe as
over the crescent moon.

"The Token" exhibits Miss Jackson in her airiest lyrical mood; a mood
original because it possesses the rare lyrism of pure music and fancy
rather than the common lyrism of unsubtilised emotion. There is bounding
music in thought and medium alike, whilst the naive plunge into the
theme without introduction or explanation is a stroke savouring of the
simplicity of genius. Equally effective is the simple metrical
transition whereby the chorus assumes the trochaic measure of a
childhood chant or carol:

    "Lightly O, brightly O,
      Down the long lane she will go!
    Dancing she, glancing she,
      Down the lane with eyes aglow!"

In "Assurance" and "It's Lovetime," the author displays a lyrical
fervour of more conventional type; adding the touch of originality by
means of melodious simplicity and reiteration in the one case, and pure
lyric ecstasy in the other.

The metrical originality of Miss Jackson, displayed in all classes of
her work, should not be slighted amidst the enthusiasm one entertains
for her magical mastery of thoughts and images. No other conservative
poet of the period is more versatile and individual in choice of
numbers, or in adaptation of measure to mood. "Driftwood," a wonderfully
original poem of imagination describing the fancies which arise from the
smoke of logs wafted from far mysterious lands where once the trees grew
under strange suns, moons, and rainbows, is as remarkable in form as in
idea. One may judge by a sample pair of stanzas:

    "You warm your hands
      And smile
    Before the fire of driftwood.

    "I feel old lands'
      Wan guile
    That writhes in fire of driftwood."

We have so far viewed poetry which would lead us to classify Miss
Jackson as a delineator of moods rather than of character; yet knowing
her versatility, we naturally expect to find among her works some potent
character studies. Nor are we disappointed. "Joe," a song of the Maine
woods, describes in admirably appropriate verbiage--as simple and as
nearly monosyllabic as possible--the typical Anglo-Saxon stoic of far
places, who faces comfort and disaster, life and death, with the same
unemotional attitude which Miss Jackson sums up so skilfully in the one
ejaculatory bit of colloquial indifference--"Dunno!"

"The Song of Jonny Laughlin" is a highly unusual ballad relating the
history of a peculiarly good and self-sacrificing river character. The
story is simple, but the piece gains distinctiveness from its absolutely
faithful reproduction of the spirit of frontier balladry. In words,
swing, and weird refrain, there exists every internal evidence of
traditional authenticity; and that such a bit of Nature could be
composed by a cultivated feminine author is an overwhelming testimonial
to Miss Jackson's unique gifts.

That Miss Jackson can reflect the spirit of the most dissimilar
characters is further proved by the two immensely powerful studies of
the vagabond type entitled "The Call" and "John Worthington Speaks."
These things are masterpieces of their kind; the self-revealing
narratives of restless wanderers by land and sea, crammed to repletion
with details and local colour which no one but their author could
command without actual experience as a derelict of five continents and
as many oceans. They leave the reader veritably breathless with wonder
at the objectivity and imagination which can enable a New-England
poetess to mirror with such compelling vividness in thought and language
the sentiments of so utterly opposite a type. Not even the narrowly
specialised genius of such rough-and-ready writers as Service and
Knibbs, working in their own peculiar field, can surpass this one slight
phase of Miss Jackson's universal genius.

It remains to speak of the singular power of Miss Jackson in the realm
of the gruesome and the terrible. With that same sensitiveness to the
unseen and the unreal which lends witchery to her gayer productions, she
has achieved in darker fields of verse results inviting comparison with
the best prose work of Ambrose Bierce or Maurice Level. Among her older
poems the ghastly and colourful phantasy "Insomnia" and the grimly
realistic rustic tragedy "Chores" excited especial praise, a critic
referring as follows to the latter piece:

    "It has all the compelling power which marks Miss Jackson's darker
    productions, and is conveyed in an arresting staccato measure which
    emphasises the homely horror of the theme. The phraseology, with its
    large proportion of rural and archaic words and constructions, adds
    vastly to the general effect and atmosphere."

This reference to Miss Jackson's unusual vocabulary deserves
elaboration, for one of the secrets of her effective poetry is the wide
and diverse array of words and word-combinations which she commands.
Recondite archaisms and ruralisms, together with marvellously apt and
original descriptive compounds, are things which perpetually astonish
and delight her readers. Of recent specimens of Miss Jackson's darker
verse, "Finality," "The Song" and "Fallen Fences" deserve especial
praise. The horrible picture conjured up in the closing lines of the
first named piece is one well calculated to haunt the dreams of the

As we conclude this survey of rich and varied poetry, our dominant
impression aside from admiration is that of wonder at the tardiness with
which the author has been recognised by the non-amateur public. As yet
the name of Jackson is a comparative novelty to the literary world, a
thing explainable only by the reluctance of its possessor to adopt that
species of trumpeting which helps less modest and less genuine poets
into the glare of celebrity. But genius such as Miss Jackson's can not
remain forever hidden, however slight be her striving for fame; so that
we may reasonably expect the next few years to witness her establishment
among the leading literary figures, as one of the ablest, broadest and
most original of contemporary bards.

Ex Oblivione


When the last days were upon me, and the ugly trifles of existence began
to drive me to madness like the small drops of water that torturers let
fall ceaselessly upon one spot of their victim's body, I loved the
irradiate refuge of sleep. In my dreams I found a little of the beauty I
had vainly sought in life, and wandered through old gardens and
enchanted woods.

Once when the wind was soft and scented I heard the south calling, and
sailed endlessly and languorously under strange stars.

Once when the gentle rain fell I glided in a barge down a sunless stream
under the earth till I reached another world of purple twilight,
iridescent arbours and undying roses.

And once I walked through a golden valley that led to shadowy groves and
ruins, and ended in a mighty wall green with antique vines, and pierced
by a little gate of bronze.

Many times I walked through that valley, and longer and longer would I
pause in the spectral half-light where the giant trees squirmed and
twisted grotesquely, and the grey ground stretched damply from trunk to
trunk, sometimes disclosing the mould-stained stones of buried temples.
And always the goal of my fancies was the mighty vine-grown wall with
the little gate of bronze therein.

After a while, as the days of waking became less and less bearable from
their greyness and sameness, I would often drift in opiate peace through
the valley and the shadowy groves, and wonder how I might seize them for
my eternal dwelling-place, so that I need no more crawl back to a dull
world stript of interest and new colours. And as I looked upon the
little gate in the mighty wall, I felt that beyond it lay a
dream-country from which, once it was entered, there would be no return.

So each night in sleep I strove to find the hidden latch of the gate in
the ivied antique wall, though it was exceedingly well-hidden. And I
would tell myself that the realm beyond the wall was not more lasting
merely, but more lovely and radiant as well.

Then one night in the dream-city of Zakarion I found a yellowed papyrus
filled with the thoughts of dream-sages who dwelt of old in that city,
and who were too wise ever to be born in the waking world. Therein were
written many things concerning the world of dream, and among them was
lore of a golden valley and a sacred grove with temples, and a high wall
pierced by a little bronze gate. When I saw this lore, I knew that it
touched on the scenes I had haunted, and I therefore read long in the
yellowed papyrus.

Some of the dream-sages wrote gorgeously of the wonders beyond the
irrepassable gate, but others told of horror and disappointment. I knew
not which to believe, yet longed more and more to cross forever into the
unknown land; for doubt and secrecy are the lure of lures, and no new
horror can be more terrible than the daily torture of the commonplace.
So when I learned of the drug which would unlock the gate and drive me
through, I resolved to take it when next I awaked.

Last night I swallowed the drug and floated dreamily into the golden
valley and the shadowy groves; and when I came this time to the antique
wall, I saw that the small gate of bronze was ajar. From beyond came a
glow that weirdly lit the giant twisted trees and tops of the buried
temples, and I drifted on songfully, expectant of the glories of the
land from whence I should never return.

But as the gate swung wider and the sorcery of drug and dream pushed me
through, I knew that all sights and glories were at an end; for in that
new realm was neither land nor sea, but only the white void of unpeopled
and illimitable space. So, happier than I had ever dared hope to be, I
dissolved again into that native infinity of crystal oblivion from which
the daemon Life had called me for one brief and desolate hour.


Providence, R. I., July 1, 1921.


 From Treasurer, up to July 1, 1921         $18.50
 Verna McGeoch (2 instalments)               10.00
 E. Edward Ericson                           10.00
 Mr. and Mrs. Leo Fritter                     2.00
 John Milton Samples                          1.00
 Balance on Hand, April 1, 1921               8.50
 Total Receipts                             $50.00


 To E. E. Ericson, for March U. A.          $46.00

 Balance on Hand, July 1, 1921               $4.00

                            H. P. LOVECRAFT,



              Official Organ
                  of the

 H. P. LOVECRAFT         _Official Editor_
 E. EDWARD ERICSON    _Official Publisher_

Issued bi-monthly by the United Amateur Press Association.

Subscription Price, 50 cents per year.

Published at Elroy, Wisconsin.

Entered as second-class mail matter at the post office at Elroy, Wis.


       *       *       *       *       *


_President_--Mrs. Ida C. Haughton, 1372 E. Long St., Columbus, Ohio.

_First Vice-President_--Frank Belknap Long, Jr., 823 West End Ave., New
York City.

_Second Vice-President_--Eleanor Beryl North, 316 Beaver Ave., State
College, Pa.

_Secretary-Treasurer_--Alma B. Sanger, 667 Lilley Ave., Columbus, Ohio.

_Official Editor_--H. P. Lovecraft, 598 Angell St., Providence, R. I.

_Official Publisher_--E. Edward Ericson, Elroy, Wis.

_Laureate Recorder_--Howard R. Conover, Route 1, Cozaddale, Ohio.

_Manuscript Manager_--Grace M. Bromley, 1432 R St., N. W., Washington,
D. C.

_Historian_--Myrta Alice Little, Westville, N. H.

_Supervisor of Amendments_--(To be appointed.)

_Directors_--Paul J. Campbell, Route 2, Ridgefarm, Ill.; Anne T.
Renshaw, 2109 F St., N. W., Washington, D. C.; Jay Fuller Spoerri, 304
House Office Bldg., Washington, D. C.

_Department of Public Criticism_--Alfred Galpin, Jr., Chairman, 830 W.
Johnson St., Madison, Wis.

_Department of Private Criticism_--Maurice W. Moe, Chairman, 2812
Chestnut St., Milwaukee, Wis.

_Recruiting Committee_--Frank Belknap Long, Jr., Chairman, Paul J.
Campbell, Leo Fritter, Alfred L. Hutchinson, Gavin T. McColl, Maurice W.

_Ladies' Auxiliary Committee_--Eleanor Beryl North, Chairman, Mary Faye
Durr, Jennie Eva Harris, Winifred Virginia Jackson, Margaret Mahon, Anne
T. Renshaw.

       *       *       *       *       *


_Poetry_--S. Lilian McMullen; Honourable Mention, Mary Carver Williams.

_Story_--H. P. Lovecraft; Honourable Mention, Alfred Galpin, Jr.

_Essay_--Anna Helen Crofts and H. P. Lovecraft; Honourable Mention,
Alfred Galpin, Jr.

_Editorial_--(To be awarded.)

       *       *       *       *       *


_Poetry_--Arthur Goodenough, Olive G. Owen (deceased).

_Story_--Eleanor Barnhart Campbell.

_Editorial_--H. P. Lovecraft.

       *       *       *       *       *


"Amateur Journalism is for those who cultivate literature from taste or
attachment, for those who write for the love of writing, for those who
pursue the art of letters for its own sake. They may or may not be
engaged (or aspire to be engaged) in authorship as a business, but those
who are members of that profession will undoubtedly find in Amateur
Journalism the air of freedom which develops personality in writing.
They will find every encouragement to self-development, amid an
environment of art. Amateur Journalism is for all those who do literary
work for the love of it."

"The privileges of the United Amateur Press Association are: The use of
the Manuscript Bureau and the columns of the papers connected with the
Association; the Official Organ; attendance at Conventions; proxy
representation at elections; laureate competitions, etc."

"Any person who edits or contributes prose or poetry to any amateur
paper is eligible to membership."

"Application for membership must be accompanied by one dollar dues and a
printed or written credential.... If rejected, dues will be returned."

"Renewal or reinstatement fee is two dollars."

"Applicants for membership should address their applications, with
credential and dues, to the Secretary, Miss Alma B. Sanger, 667 Lilley
Ave., Columbus, Ohio."

"Any person wishing to become connected with the Association without
furnishing a credential or becoming active, may upon payment of two
dollars be enrolled as a sustaining member for one year. A sustaining
member shall be entitled to all the privileges of active membership
except the right to vote or hold office."

"Laureate entries shall be poem, story, essay and editorial."

"Entries must be printed in an amateur paper, and a marked copy sent to
the Laureate Recorder by June 1."

Anyone desiring application blanks for recruiting may receive them by
applying to the Secretary.

       *       *       *       *       *


Members are urged to remember the recent doubling of dues, whereby all
renewals became _Two Dollars_ each.

       *       *       *       *       *

The fullest of apologies is due the membership for the lateness of this
issue of THE UNITED AMATEUR. A prostrating and overwhelming flood of
professional duties, coupled with a state of health permitting only the
shortest of working hours, has forced the editor to delay transmission
of this copy to the publisher until November 4: a date which should be
remembered in justice to the latter official, who is equally handicapped
in the matter of conflicting duties.

                                                            THE EDITOR


In the excellent October _Woodbee_, Mr. Leo Fritter criticises with much
force the attempt of the present editor to conduct THE UNITED AMATEUR on
a tolerably civilised plane. He points out that the appearance of a
journal representing a fairly uniform maturity of thought and artistic
development may perhaps tend to discourage those newer aspirants who
have not yet attained their full literary stature, and thus defeat the
educational ends of the Association.

Mr. Fritter gathers his material for complaint from the opinions of
certain amateurs with whom he has held communication, and on this basis
alleges a "wide-spreading dissatisfaction" with the present editorial
policy. We have ourselves received numerous and enthusiastic assurances
of an opposite nature, especially since the Fritter attack, so that we
must rebut at least his charge that we are ignoring the membership's
wishes and "trying to conform them to a mould we have arbitrarily cast
according to ideas of our own." To adopt a lower standard would, indeed,
be affronting a more influential element than that which may at present
be dissatisfied; an element which has possibly gained higher claims to
consideration through the _continuous_ nature of its services to the
Association during trying times when others were silent and inactive.

But in determining the question of editorial policy, the abstract merits
of the case are more important than the act of pleasing this or that
person or group. Were we convinced that the existing order hampered the
sincere novice, we would abandon it without pride or ceremony. That we
do not, is because we are certain that retrogression and decadence would
constitute a fatal mistake. The public we serve is assumed to be a
genuinely progressive one, a group bent upon attaining some measure of
proficiency in that sincere self-expression which is art. If it were
not, it would have joined some other association of different
purposes--the defiantly crude Erford pseudo-United or the complacently
social and stationary National. What justifies the separate existence
and support of the United is its higher aesthetic and intellectual cast;
its demand for the unqualified best as a goal--which demand, by the way,
must not be construed as discriminating against even the crudest
beginner who honestly cherishes that goal. With these objects in mind,
it will be seen that the self-satisfied exultation of the superficial,
the obvious, the commonplace, and the conventional, would form the
greatest possible tactical error. The goal would be unjustifiably
obscured, and the aspiration of the membership stunted, through the
enshrining of a false and inferior goal--a literary Golden Calf. We must
envisage a genuine scale of values, and possess a model of genuine
excellence toward which to strive. It would pay better to work toward a
high standard oneself, than to seek to drag the standard down to fit
whatever particular grade of ignorance one may happen to have at a given
moment. With proper effort any member may eventually produce work of the
UNITED AMATEUR grade, and such work will be certain of a cordial welcome
in this office. The official organ is not so narrow as it seems; if more
of our capable members would favour it with their literary
contributions, the range of authors represented would not be so
restricted. It is not the editor but the body of our _literati_ who must
bear responsibility for the constant reappearance of certain names. This
issue is headed by the same poet who headed the last two--but only
because another eminent amateur, so far unrepresented during the present
regime, utterly ignored our repeated requests for a contribution.

Mr. Fritter--who, I fear, wrongs etymology in his acceptance of the word
_amateur_ as meaning a tyro rather than a genuine and disinterested
artist--forgets that a relapse to cruder standards would totally unfit
the United for serving that staunch element which has contributed most
to its present welfare. Many would find a society of the lower grade
intolerable; certainly it could not hope to hold the very ones who have
given this organization its existing distinctiveness and pre-eminence.

Yet in the arguments of Mr. Fritter there is an underlying soundness
which misapplication should not obscure to the analytical reader. He is
right in lamenting, as we believe he does, the absence of a suitable
publishing medium for the work of our younger writers. It is not in a
spirit of affront to him that we give preference to the plan of
President Haughton, as outlined in her opening message, for the
re-establishment of a special magazine for credentials. We should be
glad to curtail the official organ in the interest of such a magazine,
as indeed we offered to do at the beginning of the term.

_Frustra laborat_, says the old proverb, _qui omnibus placere studet_.
We regret that any one policy must of necessity displease a few members,
yet do not see how any improvement could be effected by making a change
which would merely shift the displeasure to another and even more
continuously industrious group. It is significant that the Gothic party
have no editorial candidate of their own to offer, so that the thankless
and toilsome office has been forced upon one whose indifferent health
makes it an almost unbearable burden to him. The question is one which
should ultimately be decided at the polls, each party putting forward a
nominee who can be depended upon to fulfil its mandates. Meanwhile the
present editor, whose sincere beliefs and policies were fully known long
before his unopposed election, stands ready to resign most cheerfully
whenever a suitable successor can be found. Bitterness, division and
personalities must be avoided at any cost, and we may be reckoned as a
supporter of THE UNITED AMATEUR under any editor and policy.



              Official Organ
                  of the

 H. P. LOVECRAFT         _Official Editor_
 E. EDWARD ERICSON    _Official Publisher_

Issued bi-monthly by the United Amateur Press Association.

Subscription Price, 50 cents per year.

Published at Elroy, Wisconsin.

Entered as second-class mail matter at the post office at Elroy, Wis.

       *       *       *       *       *

Members who criticised the present editor for severity during the
chairmanship of the critical department are invited to take a vicarious
revenge this month, observing the uncensored remarks of the present
juvenile chairman concerning our pathetic ignorance. Of us Master Galpin
says: "when the author approaches involved or technical subjects, he
shows clearly the unfortunate circumstance that he has never profited by
an advanced education." This certainly should purge us of all suspicion
of conducting THE UNITED AMATEUR on too Olympian a level, although the
critic qualifies his dictum by conceding that we realise our own crudity
and are striving in our old age to acquire at least the rudiments of an
elementary education. In the course of a few years we hope to guarantee
our readers an official organ practically free from the grosser errors
of spelling and grammar: meanwhile, _vivat Galpinius parvulus_!

       *       *       *       *       *

Myrta Alice Little, Eugene B. Kuntz, Leo G. Schussman, Margaret Richard,
Daisy Crump Whitehead, Clara L. Bell, John O. Baldwin, and the Editor.

The Tryout. October 1921. Uniform size. Contributions by H. P.
Lovecraft, Margaret Richard, Beth Cheney Nichols, Arthur Goodenough, K.
Leyson Brown, Horace L. Lawson, John Milton Samples, Washington Van
Dusen, Leo G. Schussman, Lilian Middleton, Anita Roberta Kirksey, and
the Editor.

THE UNITED AMATEUR. March 1921. Official Organ of the United Amateur
Press Association. 14 Pages and cover. 7◊10. Contributions by Winifred
Virginia Jackson, Lilian Middleton, Frank Belknap Long, Jr., J. E. Hoag,
Anna H. Crofts, Eleanor Beryl North, Ward Phillips, and the Editor,
H. P. Lovecraft.

THE UNITED AMATEUR. May 1921. 8 pages. 7◊10. Contributions by Lilian
Middleton, Alfred Galpin, Jr., Eugene B. Kuntz, Margaret Mahon, Winifred
Virginia Jackson, and Adam Harold Brown.

THE UNITED AMATEUR. July 1921. 6 pages. 7◊10. Contributions by Lilian
Middleton and Myrta Alice Little.

The United Co-Operative. April 1921. 16 pages. 6◊9. Contributions by
Lilian Middleton, Elizabeth Berkeley and Lewis Theobald, Jr., W. Edwin
Gibson, John C. Pryor, H. P. Lovecraft, Samuel Loveman, Eugene B. Kuntz.
Published under the auspices of the U. A. P. A. by the following
members: Anne Tillery Renshaw, Rev. John Clinton Pryor, W. Edwin Gibson,
H. P. Lovecraft.

The Woodbee. October 1921. 16 pages and cover. 5◊7. Contributions by
Bess Ballou, Alma B. Sanger, Norma Helena Marie Sanger, Leo Fritter,
Edna M. Haughton, Peggy Hepner Fritter, Henriette Ziegfeld, and the
President, Ida C. Haughton. Official Organ of the Woodbee Press Club,
Columbus, Ohio.

Ziegfeld's Follies. September 1921. 1 page. 5Ω◊8Ω. Contributions by the
Editor, Arthur F. Ziegfeld.

Ziegfeld's Follies. October 1921. 4 pages. Uniform size. Contributions
by Ida C. Haughton, Leo Fritter, and the Editor, Arthur F. Ziegfeld.

                                               MYRTA ALICE LITTLE,


Providence, R. I., December 29, 1921.

 On Hand, July 1, 1921                       $4.00


 Sonia H. Greene                            $50.00
 From Treasury, up to Dec. 29, 1921          41.60
 H. P. Lovecraft                             15.40
 Mr. and Mrs. Leo Fritter                     6.00
 Howard R. Conover                            5.00
 Woodbee Press Club                           5.00
 Theodore D. Gottlieb                         1.00
 Ida C. Haughton                              1.00
     Total Receipts                        $129.00


 To E. E. Ericson, for May U. A.            $24.00
 To E. E. Ericson, for July U. A.            18.00
 To E. E. Ericson, for Sept. U. A.           36.00
 To E. E. Ericson, for Nov. U. A.            36.00
     Total Expenditures                    $114.00

 Balance on Hand, December 29, 1921         $15.00

                            H. P. LOVECRAFT,



              Official Organ
                  of the

 H. P. LOVECRAFT         _Official Editor_
 E. EDWARD ERICSON    _Official Publisher_

Issued bi-monthly by the United Amateur Press Association.

Subscription Price, 50 cents per year.

Published at Elroy, Wisconsin.

Entered as second-class mail matter at the post office at Elroy, Wis.


Amidst the prevailing efforts of a small but pugnacious group to "liven"
up the United through attacks on the Official Organ, a few basic
principles should be remembered by those who stand in bewilderment.

Our constitution does not define the functions of THE UNITED AMATEUR
beyond making imperative the publication of certain official documents.
The rest is left to an unwritten combination of tradition and editorial
judgment. Any editor, once elected, is absolutely in control of the
magazine aside from the essential official matter; his only external
obligation being a tacit recognition of the prevailing objects of the
Association. In the present case a narrow circle of agitators seems to
be seeking political capital by accusing the editor of placing too high
an estimate on the membership and purposes of the United.

Since the whole development of the Association is involved in this
matter, it is important that a prompt and perfect understanding be
reached. The opinions of all members should be known, and if the editor
finds that he has been in error, he will be glad to arrange for the
accommodation of the Organ to the wishes of the majority. Up to the
present time, despite the florid overstatements of the few who are
trying to work up a new and wholly artificial dissatisfaction, this
office has received _not so much as one complaint_ as to policy save
from the two politicians who are seeking to lower the United's
standards. Endorsements as to the existing policy have been many, and as
long as these remain so tremendously in the Majority, it would be a
betrayal of trust to make a change to please a tiny group. If there are
those who differ, why do they not speak?

Since truth is the only perfect clarifier when politics seeks to
becloud, it is necessary that the editor state his policy here and now
with the utmost candour. Shorn of all irrelevant things, that policy is
simply the maintenance of those standards established in the United by
the departure of the chronically political element in 1912. Prior to
that time the Official Organ was mainly a bulletin of reports: not, as
the present agitators would imply, a repository for indiscriminate
amateur writings. The standard developed since then is the creation of
no one person, but a logical outgrowth of the rising calibre of a vital
and progressive society. It is neither one of favouritism nor one of
autocracy; but merely one of _stimulation_. It is an embodiment of the
United's desire to let the Official Organ exemplify the members'
progress by using the best available material. No genuine aspirant has
ever been frowned upon, or so far as we know given any ground for
discouragement. The Organ is a beckoner and encourager, designed to
inspire the members to renewed efforts to produce work worthy of
symbolising the United. Would anyone so far insult the Association as to
wish its official exponent to cater to that type of mediocrity which
neither improves nor wishes to improve? Our columns are open to all who
toil for the fruits of art, and statements to the contrary cannot be
interpreted as other than irresponsibly ignorant or craftily
misrepresentative. While insistence on a certain degree of merit is of
course necessary, it is not true that THE UNITED AMATEUR makes any
arbitrary restrictions. The Organ was not designed for the publication
of various members' work, nor is access to its columns one of the
special objects of membership, as certain agitators are artfully
intimating. But notwithstanding those technical points, all proficient
writers are welcome. It is illuminating, in view of the prevalent loose
statements, to reflect that throughout the present editor's service _not
more than three manuscripts have been rejected_; and that even these
three were or will be elsewhere placed. Those seeking an Associational
disturbance will not scruple to take advantage of every outward
appearance which seems to favour them--unavoidable delays, spatial
limitations, and other things interfering with prompt publication of all
matter offered to this office. The present editor will be denounced as a
"tyrant" by elements attempting to degrade standards which he did not

The life and well-being of the United are at stake, and it is imperative
that the membership exercise the most careful and independent reflection
before accepting the views of radicals bent on retrogressive



Providence, R. I., April 25, 1922.

 On Hand, December 29, 1921                 $15.00


 From Treasury, up to April 25              $31.00
 Woodbee Press Club                          10.00
 H. P. Lovecraft                              7.00
 Anonymous                                    5.00
 Mr. and Mrs. Leo Fritter                     2.00
 Ida C. Haughton                              2.00
     Total Receipts                         $72.00


 To E. E. Ericson, for January U. A.        $36.00
 To E. E. Ericson, for March U. A.           36.00
     Total Expenditures                     $72.00

 Balance on Hand, April 25, 1922              None

                            H. P. LOVECRAFT,



Providence, R. I., June 23, 1922.

 On Hand, April 25, 1922                      None

_Receipts Since April 25_

 From Treasury, up to June 23               $28.00
 Alfred Galpin, Jr.                           6.00
 Woodbee Press Club                           5.00
 Mr. and Mrs. Leo Fritter                     2.00
     Total Receipts                         $41.00


 To E. E. Ericson, for May U. A.            $24.00

 Balance on Hand, June 23, 1922             $17.00

                     H. P. LOVECRAFT, Custodian.

At the Home of Poe

_A Poem in Prose_

To H. P. Lovecraft


The home of Poe! It is like a fairy dwelling, a gnomic palace built of
the aether of dreams. It is tiny and delicate and lovely, and replete
with memories of sere leaves in November and of lilies in April. It is a
castle of vanished hopes, of dimly-remembered dreams, of sad memories
older than the deluge. The dead years circle slowly and solemnly around
its low white walls, and clothe it in a mystic veil of unseen tears. And
many marvellous stories could this quaint little old house tell, many
weird and cryptic stories of him of the Raven hair, and high, pallid
brow, and sad, sweet face, and melancholy mien; and of the beloved
Virginia, that sweet child of a thousand magic visions, child of the
lonesome, pale-gray latter years, child of the soft and happy South. And
how the dreamer of the spheres must have loved this strange little
house. Every night the hollow boards of its porch must have echoed to
his footfall, and every morn the great rising sun must have sent its
rays through the little window, and bathed the lovely tresses of the
dream-child in mystical yellow. And perhaps there was laughter within
the walls of that house--laughter and merriment and singing. But we know
that the Evil One came at last, the grim humourless spectre who loves
not beauty, and is not of this world. And we know that the house of
youth and of love became a house of death, and that memories bitter as
the tears of a beautiful woman assailed the dreamer within. And at last
he himself left that house of mourning and sought solace among the
stars. But the house remains a vision out of a magical book; a thing
seen darkly as in a looking-glass; but lovely beyond the dreams of
mortals, and ineffably sad.

Transcriber's Notes:

Minor typographical errors have been corrected without note. Significant
amendments, author's corrections and further notes have been recorded
below. American and British forms of typography, in addition to variant,
dialect and archaic spellings, have been retained except where obvious
errors exist.

Author's Corrections:

 p. 14, see p. 30 for details:
        'long' corrected to _longer_.

 p. 49, see p. 60 for details:
        'sublime' corrected to _sublimer_;
        'star's' corrected to _stars_;
        'father's' corrected to _fathers_;
        'hollow'd' corrected to _hallow'd_.

Transcriber's Amendments:

 p. 7, 'insanity' amended to _inanity_: 'triteness and inanity';
       'permissable' amended to _permissible_: 'permissible clause';
       'breath' amended to _breadth_: 'present moderate breadth'.

 p. 8, 'woud' amended to _would_: 'would do much';
       'editorials' amended to _editorial_: 'Mr Stokes' editorial';
       'istincts' amended to _instincts_: 'in our instincts';
       'amateurs' amended to _amateur_: 'in amateur circles'.

 p. 9, 'from' amended to _form_: 'Credentials form the'.

 p. 11, 'scacely' amended to _scarcely_: 'but scarcely equal';
        'colums' amended to _columns_: 'Coyote's editorial columns'.

 p. 12, 'Sappo' amended to _Sappho_: '"To Sappho", by Olive G. Owen'.

 p. 13, 'Morrish' amended to _Moorish_: 'old Moorish Spain'.

 p. 14, 'Houghton' amended to _Haughton_: 'Edna Mitchell Haughton's'.

        'witheld' amended to _withheld_: 'merely withheld from'.

 p. 16, added _is_: 'no praise is needed';
        'Niagra' amended to _Niagara_: 'Visit to Niagara';
        'wormth' amended to _warmth_: 'and genuine warmth';
        'Weeks' amended to _Week_: 'History of an Eight-Week-Old'.

 p. 17, 'advantage' amended to _advantages_: 'advantages ... are many'.

 p. 18, 'pronounciation' amended to _pronunciation_: 'New York
        'Mrs.' amended to _Mr._, referring to Ricardo Santiago.

 p. 19, 'phenomerally' amended to _phenomenally_: 'phenomenally pure';
        'Hennesey' amended to _Hennessey_: 'James J. Hennessey'.

 p. 20, 'bestrown' amended to _bestrewn_: 'is bestrewn with slang'.

 p. 25, 'away' amended to _way_: 'giving way to'.

 p. 29, 'techique' amended to _technique_: 'plot and technique'.

 p. 33, 'Heindall's' amended to _Heimdall's_.

 p. 34, 'Heindall' amended to _Heimdall_;
        'Sehrimner' amended to _Sehrimnir_: 'the boar Sehrimnir'.

 p. 35, 'Jordon' amended to _Jordan_ (3 instances);
        'inconsistancy ... is' amended to _inconsistency ... it_:
            'inconsistency, but it seems';
        'a' amended to _of_: 'rank as a poet is of very high tone'.

 p. 36, 'beautful' amended to _beautiful_: 'delicately beautiful';
        'posessive' amended to _possessive_: 'possessive case';
        'ungramatical' amended to _ungrammatical_: 'by the ungrammatical';
        'Harington' amended to _Harrington_: 'William T. Harrington';
        'abnorman pschology' amended to _abnormal psychology_;
        'letre' amended to _metre_: 'tuneful metre';
        'Chrismas' amended to _Christmas_: 'Christmas number';
        'Jordon' amended to _Jordan_: 'Winifred V. Jordan's'.

 p. 37, 'propertly' amended to _properly_: 'be properly welcomed';
        'throught' amended to _through_: 'recording thought through'.

 p. 38, 'Buterfly' amended to _Butterfly_: 'To a Butterfly';
        'Jordon' amended to _Jordan_: 'Winifred V. Jordan';
        'con-conception' amended to _conception_: 'his conception of'.

 p. 39, 'classoical' amended to _classical_: 'more classical myths';
        added _by_: 'also by Mr. Cole';
        'beautful' amended to _beautiful_: 'many beautiful passages';
        'physhological' amended to _psychological_: 'a psychological as';
        'dignnity' amended to _dignity_: 'humility and dignity';
        'gramatical' amended to _grammatical_: 'of grammatical or'.

 p. 40, 'Emile' amended to _Emilie_: 'Emilie C. Holladay';
        'ocasional' amended to _occasional_: 'the occasional metrical';
        'Jordon' amended to _Jordan_: 'Winifred V. Jordan';
        'Willam' amended to _William_: 'William de Ryee';
        'technicly' amended to _technically_: 'are technically no';
        'Canvass' amended to _Canvas_: 'the Canvas Wall';
        'but is' amended to _is but_: 'novel is but a'.

 p. 41, 'mosiac' amended to _mosaic_: 'skillful mosaic of';
        'unaquainted' amended to _unacquainted_: 'totally unacquainted';
        'embarassed' amended to _embarrassed_: 'a little embarrassed'.

 p. 42, 'staza' amended to _stanza_: 'first stanza might'.

 p. 43, 'pharse' amended to _phrase_: 'the awkward phrase';
        'ryhthm' amended to _rhythm_: 'swinging dactylic rhythm';
        'uder' amended to _under_: 'coat under the wayside'.

 p. 44, 'develope' amended to _develop_: 'all develop naturally';
        'Macauly' amended to _Macauley_: 'George W. Macauley'.

 p. 45, 'pratically' amended to _practically_: 'for practically all';
        'amatuer' amended to _amateur_: 'professionalized amateur';
        'happly' amended to _happily_: 'happily extinct tribe'.

 p. 47, 'apearance' amended to _appearance_: 'the appearance of';
        'incongrous' amended to _incongruous_: 'a rather incongruous'.

 p. 48, 'reminiscense' amended to _reminiscence_: 'pensive reminiscence';
        'Haaughton' amended to _Haughton_: 'Ida C. Haughton'.

 p. 50, 'unamimous' amended to _unanimous_: 'absolutely unanimous vote';
        'sustined' amended to _sustained_: 'and sustained his'.

 p. 52, 'Kliner' amended to _Kleiner_: 'the Kleiner type';
        'Henrietta' amended to _Henriette_: 'Henriette and Florenz';
        'thoughfulness' amended to _thoughtfulness_: 'for thoughtfulness'.

 p. 53, 'essays-writers' amended to _essay-writers_.

 p. 54, 'prosed' amended to _proposed_: 'the proposed alteration'.

 p. 57, 'Statess' amended to _States_: 'the United States'.

 p. 59, 'Mathew' amended to _Matthew_: 'by Matthew Hilson'.

 p. 61, 'ancesters' amended to _ancestors_: 'of my ancestors'.

 p. 63, 'ancesters' amended to _ancestors_: 'ancestors had met';
        'told' amended to _tolled_: 'clock ... tolled off'.

 p. 64, 'Godfry' amended to _Godfrey_: 'son of Godfrey';
        'particularily' amended to _particularly_: 'most particularly';
        'gastly' amended to _ghastly_: 'ghastly radiance'.

 p. 66, 'rhym' amended to _rhyme_: 'nobility of the rhyme';
        'bouyant' amended to _buoyant_: 'joy and buoyant';
        'tireomely' amended to _tiresomely_: 'tiresomely commonplace';
        'savour' amended to _savours_: 'savours too much'.

 p. 67, 'solesisms' amended to _solecisms_: 'such solecisms as';
        'avoid' amended to _avoided_: 'should be avoided'.

 p. 68, 'awkard' amended to _awkward_: 'not wholly awkward';
        'copmlete' amended to _complete_: 'more complete';
        repeated line removed: 'sentiment, deriving much force from the';
        'poplarly' amended to _popularly_: 'are popularly supposed';
        added _a_: 'it is a comfort'.

 p. 69, repeated line removed: 'ology. In the third line of the third
        'hypocricy' amended to _hypocrisy_: 'The hypocrisy of'.

 p. 70, 'occuring' amended to _occurring_: 'A rhyme occurring';
        'colum' amended to _column_: 'editorial column of';
        'techinque' amended to _technique_: 'old-school technique'.

 p. 71, 'unsual' amended to _unusual_: 'rather unusual';
        repeated text 'of' removed: 'pen of of Mrs. W. V. Jordan'.

 p. 72, 'accentuaton' amended to _accentuation_: 'accentuation of the';
        'hsould' amended to _should_: 'word should be';
        'citic' amended to _critic_: 'the present critic'.

 p. 73, 'denizon' amended to _denizen_: 'or =denizen= is';
        'year' amended to _years_: 'eighty-six years ago';
        'contents ... is' amended to _contents ... are_;
        'McGavach' amended to _McGavack_ (2 instances).

 p. 74, added _is_: '"Education in Trinidad" is another'.

 p. 77, 'revails' amended to _reveals_: 'but scansion reveals';
        'Gallenne' amended to _Gallienne_: 'Richard Le Gallienne'.

 p. 78, 'vesy' amended to _very_: 'a very pleasing';
        'gartifyingly' amended to _gratifyingly_: 'metre is gratifyingly';
        'hypocracy' amended to _hypocrisy_: 'anti-prohibition hypocrisy';
        'earsest' amended to _earnest_: 'are more earnest'.

 p. 79, 'propertly' amended to _properly_: 'cannot properly be rhymed'.

 p. 81, 'posses ... conspicious' amended to _possess ... conspicuous_:
            'possess both deep fervour and conspicuous merit';
        'McGavach' amended to _McGavack_ (3 instances).

 p. 82, 'Parke's' amended to _Mr. Parks'_: 'Mr. Parks' brief sketches';
        'McGavach' amended to _McGavack_ (2 instances);
        'irresistly' amended to _irresistibly_: 'irresistibly delight';
        'metriacl' amended to _metrical_: 'metrical effort'.

 p. 84, 'ocurrences' amended to _occurrences_: 'obscure occurrences of'.

 p. 85, 'Authour' amended to _Author_: 'Author of the'.

 p. 88, 'Ecstacy' amended to _Ecstasy_: '"Ecstasy," a poem';
        'imporant' amended to _important_: 'number of important'.

 p. 90, 'rtaes' amended to _rates_: 'at reasonable rates'.

 p. 91, 'cooperateion' amended to _co-operation_: 'closer co-operation';
        'Asociation' amended to _Association_: 'out of the Association'.

 p. 92, 'productons' amended to _productions_: 'literary productions'.

 p. 93, 'twilght ... unpanted' amended to _twilight ... unpainted_:
            'through the twilight, some grey, unpainted';
        'pronounciation' amended to _pronunciation_: 'pronunciation of'.

 p. 94, 'dsplaying' amended to _displaying_: 'displaying an enviable';
        'Medum' amended to _Medium_: 'Medium of Education';
        'it' amended to _in_: 'picturesque in atmosphere'.

 p. 95, 'wth' amended to _with_: 'compared with many';
        'Reiseberg' amended to _Rieseberg_: 'Harry E. Rieseberg'.

 p. 98, 'adminstrative' amended to _administrative_.

 p. 99, 'Lindquqist' amended to _Lindquist_.

 p. 100, 'insuffcient' amended to _insufficient_: 'is insufficient to'.

 p. 103, 'it' amended to _is_: 'and it is a source'.

 p. 104, 'rhetorican' amended to _rhetorician_: 'as a rhetorician'.

 p. 105, 'Namantius' amended to _Namatianus_.

 p. 106, 'corect' amended to _correct_: 'most correct age'.

 p. 109, 'similiarly' amended to _similarly_: 'the similarly spelled'.

 p. 110, 'psuedo-anecdotes' amended to _pseudo-anecdotes_;
         'gratfying' amended to _gratifying_: 'great and gratifying'.

 p. 112, 'persual' amended to _perusal_: 'perusal of standard'.

 p. 113, 'demonstrate' amended to _demonstrates_: 'A glance ...
         'econium' amended to _encomium_: 'evoke encomium with'.

 p. 119, 'gorss' amended to _gross_: 'gross violations of';
         repeated text 'and verb' removed: 'noun and verb and verb';
         'ues' amended to _use_: 'Ambiguous use of pronouns'.

 p. 122, 'versimilitude' amended to _verisimilitude_;
         'qualiy' amended to _quality_: 'prosaic quality'.

 p. 126, 'Deinos' amended to _Deimos_: 'Deimos and Phobos'.

Further Notes:

 p. 16, 'Dempsey' and p. 43, 'Dempesy', conflicted spelling: 'Caryl
            Wilson Demp[se/es]y'.

 p. 41, 'Frazer' and p. 51, 'Frazier', conflicted spelling: 'John W.

 p. 73, 'Acyion', possible misprint of _Alcyon_ or _Alcyone_: 'Edwin
            Gibson's "Sonnet to Acyion"'.

 p. 93, 'Dionondawa', possible misprint of _Dionondehowa_: 'To the
            Falls of Dionondawa'.

*** End of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Writings in the United Amateur, 1915-1922" ***

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