Posts tagged ‘1905’

Tuesday, 18 February 2020

In Praise of Her Own Beauty by Zeb-un-Nissa

When from my cheek I lift my veil,
The roses turn with envy pale,
⁠And from their pierced hearts, rich with pain,
Send forth their fragrance like a wail.

Or if perchance one perfumed tress
Be lowered to the wind’s caress,
⁠The honeyed hyacinths complain,
And languish in a sweet distress.

And, when I pause, still groves among,
(Such loveliness is mine) a throng
⁠Of nightingales awake and strain
Their souls into a quivering song.


Date: ?1690 (original in Persian); 1905 (translation in English)

By: Zeb-un-Nissa (1638-1702)

Translated by: Sarojini Chattopadhyay Naidu (1879-1949)

Saturday, 25 May 2019

Introductory Remarks by Edmund Clerihew Bentley

The Art of Biography
Is different from Geography.
Geography is about Maps,
But Biography is about Chaps..

From: Clerihew, E., Biography for Beginners, Being a Collection of Miscellaneous Examples for the Use of Upper Forms, 1905, T. Werner Laurie: London, p. [unnumbered].

Date: 1905

By: Edmund Clerihew Bentley (1875-1956)

Monday, 2 October 2017

Quaker Meeting by Christine Siebeneck Swayne

With folded hands laid down upon my knee,
I bide, nor heed the moment’s rushing flight,
Nor hear the city’s loud garrulity.
The charge and countercharge of wordy fight;
From these strong walls of silence fend me quite,
And I am left, in peace, to contemplate,
Alone and open to the nameless Light,
With all my depths of soul irradiate.
While speech must fail, and even formless thought,
And blind-eyed instinct (stirring in the clay),
And sturdy reason, all be counted naught,
All cast aside for this diviner way —
The hidden, psychic power awaken, thrill,
Vibrate, responsive to the Outer Will.

From: Swayne, Christine Siebeneck, The Visionary and Other Poems, 1905, The Gorham Press: Boston, p. 23.

Date: 1905

By: Christine Siebeneck Swayne (1874-1950)

Sunday, 29 May 2016

The Canticle of the Sun by Francis of Assissi (Giovanni di Pietro di Bernardone)

Here begin the praises of the creatures which the Blessed Francis made to the praise and honor of god while he was ill at St. Damian’s:

Most high, omnipotent, good Lord,
Praise, glory and honor and benediction all, are Thine.
To Thee alone do they belong, most High,
And there is no man fit to mention Thee.

Praise be to Thee, my Lord, with all Thy creatures,
Especially to my worshipful brother sun,
The which lights up the day, and through him dost Thou brightness give;
And beautiful is he and radiant with splendor great;
Of Thee, most High, signification gives.

Praised be my Lord, for sister moon and for the stars,
In heaven Thou hast formed them clear and precious and fair.

Praised be my Lord for brother wind
And for the air and clouds and fair and every kind of weather,
By the which Thou givest to Thy creatures nourishment.

Praised be my Lord for sister water,
The which is greatly helpful and humble and precious and pure.

Praised be my Lord for brother fire,
By the which Thou lightest up the dark.
And fair is he and gay and mighty and strong.

Praised be my Lord for our sister, mother earth,
The which sustains and keeps us
And brings forth diverse fruits with grass and flowers bright.

Praised be my Lord for those who for Thy love forgive
And weakness bear and tribulation.
Blessed those who shall in peace endure,
For by Thee, most High, shall they be crowned.

Praised be my Lord for our sister, the bodily death,
From the which no living man can flee.
Woe to them who die in mortal sin;
Blessed those who shall find themselves in Thy most holy will,
For the second death shall do them no ill.

Praise ye and bless ye my Lord, and give Him thanks,
And be subject unto Him with great humility.

From: Robinson, Pashcal (translator), The Writings of St. Francis of Assissi, 2007, Santa Cruz, California, pp. 152-153.

Date: 1225 (original); 1905 (translation)

By: Francis of Assissi (Giovanni di Pietro di Bernardone) (1181/1182-1226)

Translated by: Paschal (David) Robinson (1870-1948)

Tuesday, 19 April 2016

When We Read the Rubáiyát by Helen Rowland

When we read the Rubáiyát,
Lounging on a bed of myrtle; —
You with low, tip-tilted hat
And the pansies in your kirtle —
Just a book of verses there,
Underneath that swinging bough—
We were but a foolish pair,—
“I and thou”!

‘T is a page with danger fraught,
Omar’s leaf of rose-hued fancies.
‘Neath its spell, what hearts are caught
In a mesh of maiden glances!
Had the book been aught but that,
Would we e’er have pledged that vow,
Sworn upon the Rubáiyát,
‘Neath the bough? While you lisped of “thee and me,”
In old Omar’s silvered phrases,
‘Neath your hat I peeped to see,
Bound you with a chain of daisies,
Toyëd with your rumpled glove,
Pinned a rose above your brow; —
Thus we quaffed the wine of love,
I and thou.

Under Omar’s subtle spell,
With the bird of Time a-winging,
What a world our eyes did tell
Of our thoughts so madly singing;
Yours with lids pressed shyly down,
While, with all a lover’s art,
Mine, beneath the lash of brown,
Sought your heart.

“Fools! ‘t is neither there nor here,
Your reward!” Thus sang the poet
In those rhythms sweetly clear.
Said our eyes: “Do we not know it?
What reward do we desire
But to sit beneath this tree
And to read with hearts afire
‘Thee and me’!”

Slyly then, I crept more close: —
You of course read on unknowing,
Though the wine of Omar’s rose
Just below your hat was glowing.
When at last I caught your hand
‘Neath the book. Dear, tell me how
Did we subtly understand,
I and thou?

Was the wine of Omar’s verse
In our blood, within that hour,
That, forgetful of life’s curse,
We should quaff the cup and flower,
Till in Paradise we sat
(Ah, to be as happy now!),
While we read the Rubáiyát,
I and thou!

From: Rowland, Helen, “When We Read the Rubáiyát” in The Critic; an illustrated monthly review of literature, art, and life, n.s. v. 43 1905 Jan-Jun, pp. 356-357.

Date: 1905

By: Helen Rowland (1875-1950)

Friday, 25 December 2015

Hymn for Christmas Day by Aurelius Clemens Prudentius

Why doth the sun re-orient take
A wider range, his limits break?
Lo! Christ is born, and o’er earth’s night
Shineth from more to more the light!

Too swiftly did the radiant day
Her brief course run and pass away:
She scarce her kindly torch had fired
Ere slowly fading it expired.

Now let the sky more brightly beam,
The earth take up the joyous theme:
The orb a broadening pathway gains
And with its erstwhile splendour reigns.

Sweet babe, of chastity the flower,
A virgin’s blest mysterious dower!
Rise in Thy twofold nature’s might:
Rise, God and man to reunite!

Though by the Father’s will above
Thou wert begot, the Son of Love,
Yet in His bosom Thou didst dwell,
Of Wisdom the eternal Well;

Wisdom, whereby the heavens were made
And light’s foundations first were laid:
Creative Word! all flows from Thee!
The Word is God eternally.

For though with process of the suns
The ordered whole harmonious runs,
Still the Artificer Divine
Leaves not the Father’s inmost shrine.

The rolling wheels of Time had passed
O’er their millennial journey vast,
Before in judgment clad He came
Unto the world long steeped in shame.

The purblind souls of mortals crass
Had trusted gods of stone and brass,
To things of nought their worship paid
And senseless blocks of wood obeyed.

And thus employed, they fell below
The sway of man’s perfidious foe:
Plunged in the smoky sheer abyss
They sank bereft of their true bliss.

But that sore plight of ruined man
Christ’s pity could not lightly scan:
Nor let God’s building nobly wrought
Ingloriously be brought to nought.

He wrapped Him in our fleshly guise,
That from the tomb He might arise,
And man released from death’s grim snare
Home to His Father’s bosom bear.

This is the day of Thy dear birth,
The bridal of the heaven and earth,
When the Creator breathed on Thee
The breath of pure humanity.

Ah! glorious Maid, dost thou not guess
What guerdon thy chaste soul shall bless,
How by thy ripening pangs is bought
An honour greater than all thought?

O what a load of joy untold
Thy womb inviolate doth hold!
Of thee a golden age is born,
The brightness of the earth’s new morn!

Hearken! doth not the infant’s wail
The universal springtide hail?
For now the world re-born lays by
Its gloomy, frost-bound apathy.

Methinks in all her rustic bowers
The earth is spread with clustering flowers:
Odours of nard and nectar sweet
E’en o’er the sands of Syrtes fleet.

All places rough and deserts wild
Have felt from far Thy coming, Child:
Rocks to Thy gentle empire bow
And verdure clothes the mountain brow.

Sweet honey from the boulder leaps:
The sere and leafless oak-bough weeps
A strange rich attar: tamarisks too
Of balsam pure distil the dew.

Blessed for ever, cradle dear,
The lowly stall, the cavern drear!
Men to this shrine, Eternal King,
With dumb brutes adoration bring.

The ox and ass in homage low
Obedient to their Maker bow:
Bows too the unlearn’d heartless crowd
Whose minds the sensual feast doth cloud.

Though, by the faithful Spirit impelled,
Shepherds and brutes, unreasoning held,
Yea, folk that did in darkness dwell
Discern their God in His poor cell:

Yet children of the sacred race
Blindly abhor the Incarnate grace:
By philtres you might deem them lulled
Or by some bacchic phrenzy dulled.

Why headlong thus to ruin stride?
If aught of soundness in you bide,
Behold in Him the Lord divine
Of all your patriarchal line.

Mark you the dim-lit cave, the Maid,
The humble nurse, the cradle laid,
The helpless infancy forlorn:
Yet thus the Gentiles’ King was born!

Ah sinner, thou shalt one day see
This Child in dreadful majesty,
See Him in glorious clouds descend,
While thou thy guilty heart shalt rend.

Vain all thy tears, when loud shall sound
The trump, when flames shall scorch the ground,
When from its hinge the cloven world
Is loosed, in horrid tumult hurled.

Then throned on high, the Judge of all
Shall mortals to their reckoning call:
To these shall grant the prize of light,
To those Gehenna’s gloomy night.

Then, Israel, shalt thou learn at length
The Cross hath, as the lightning, strength:
Doomed by thy wrath, He now is Lord,
Whom Death once grasped but soon restored.

From: Prudentius, Aurelius Clemens and Pope, R. Martin, The Hymns of Prudentius, 2005, Gutenberg Project: Salt Lake City.

Date: c390 (original in Latin); 1905 (translated in English)

By: Aurelius Clemens Prudentius (348-c405)

Translated by: Robert Martin Pope (1865-1944)

Wednesday, 6 August 2014

The Politician by Willliam Wilfred Campbell

Carven in leathern mask or brazen face,
Were I time’s sculptor, I would set this man.
Retreating from the truth, his hawk-eyes scan
The platforms of all public thought for place.
There wriggling with insinuating grace.
He takes poor hope and effort by the hand.
And flatters with half-truths and accents bland,
Till even zeal and earnest love grow base.

Knowing no right, save power’s grim right-of-way
No nobleness, save life’s ignoble praise;
No future, save this sordid day to day;
He is the curse of these material days:
Juggling with mighty wrongs and mightier lies,
This worshipper of Dagon and his flies!

From: Campbell, Wilfred and Sykes, W.J. (ed.), The Poetical Works of Wilfred Campbell, 1922, Hodder and Stoughton: London, p. 240.

Date: 1905

By: William Wilfred Campbell (1860-1918)

Thursday, 31 July 2014

Knowledge by Anna Hempstead Branch

Once I thought that healing came
From the angels’ wings.
Now the bruisèd hands of men
Seem the kindest things.

Once I thought to pluck and eat
The fruit of Paradise.
Now I break with these their bread
With unsaddened eyes.

Once I thought to find on earth
Love, perfect and complete.
Now I know it carries wounds
In its hands and feet.

From: Branch, Anna Hempstead, Shoes that Danced and Other Poems, 1905, Houghton Mifflin Company: Boston and New York, p. 84.

Date: 1905

By: Anna Hempstead Branch (1875-1937)

Saturday, 29 June 2013

The Winter Wind by Louisa Lawson (Dora Falconer)

The winter wind! e wh-e-e, e wh-e-e!
It bites and smites and chases me,
And pelts with boughs and shrieks with glee,
This winter wind so fierce and free;
Till wide-eyed stars so white and wee
Peer through the scud all fearsomely.

The love-warm rose no longer now
Clings fondly round fair nature’s brow;
But in its place the chill winds roam
Through locks as white as frozen foam.
The winter wind so fierce and free
Has wrought this change. Ah me! Ah me!

Her dress that once was green and bright
Is stiffened sheer and bleached to white.
And where did rose and lily be
Are flecks of frosty filagree.
His breath is death, his voice is dree,
This winter wind so fierce and free.

From: Lawson, Louisa (Dora Falconer), The Lonely Crossing and Other Poems, 1998, University of Sydney Library; Sydney, p. 27.

Date: 1905

By: Louisa Lawson (Dora Falconer) (1848-1920)

Monday, 3 September 2012

A Washerwoman’s Lament by Catherine Allsop

The Daily Graphic in August, 1905, stated that Catherine Allsop, a Sheffield
washerwoman, hanged herself on a piece of clothes line on July 31st, and that
at the inquest the following lines, copied by her on a piece of sugar-paper,
were read to the jury, whose verdict was suicide during temporary insanity : —

Here lies a poor woman who always was tired,
She lived in a house where help was not hired,
Her last words on earth were ” Dear friends, I am going
Where washing ain’t done nor sweeping nor sewing,
But everything there is exact to my wishes.
For where they don’t eat there’s no washing of dishes.
I’ll be where loud anthems will always be ringing,
But, having no voice, I’ll be clear of the singing.
Don’t mourn for me now, don’t mourn for me never
I’m going to do nothing for ever and ever.”


Date: 1905

By: Catherine Allsop (?-1905)