Baltimore Evening Sun (1 August 1913): 6.
Last favor asked of Col. Jacobus Hook: Remember me to Fräulein Sophie, and give my best regards to the Herr Wirt of the Hoftheatrekaif.
In today’s Letter Column the Hon. Charles M. Levister challenges my late allegation that there is nothing in Holy Writ to justify the Hon. William H. Anderson’s historic tempting of the clergy, and nothing in praise of such fellows as the Hon. Young Cochran and the Hon. Isaac Lobe Straus. I accept his challenge, and what is more, I accept his arbitrator. If the Rev. Dr. John Roach Straton will cite a single text defending the deliberate corruption of the clergy, or if he will approve a text cited by the Hon. Mr. Anderson or by the Hon. Mr. Levister, I shall he glad to submit to the shaving of my head with a broken beer bottle supplied by the Rev. Dr. W. W. Davis and in the hands of the Hon. Sunday-school Field, L.L. D. And I hereby give the Hon. Mr. Levister written permission to achieve the shaving by force in case my courage fails and discharge him of all liability to my heirs and assigns.
A DAILY THOUGHT. What I most do is all that concerns me; not what people think.--James Kuhviertel.
The Hon. Uncle Fred Talbott, by entering the Senatorial primaries against the Hon. Blair Lee, finds the Hon. William H. Anderson, that pure and lofty spirit, on his side. Fred is also now on intimate terms with the snouters of the Lord’s Day Alliance, who have joined in his moral jehad against the Biddison-Mattfeldt crowd. Thus the old enemies lie down together in nomine Domini.
The following drawing, from one of the Maine papers, shows how the prohibition law is being evaded by the honest yokels f that fair State:
As will be noted, the package has the outward appearance of a carboy of root beer, a harmless beverage. What is more, it yields root beer when sampled by the alert constabulary. But outside the ingenious tube of genuine root beer there is a young ocean of 50-ampere red-eye–and it is this red-eye, and not the root beer, that goes gurgling down the bucolic gullet.
Such are the joys of life under prohibition! As the Hon. William H. Anderson would say, the very fact that the folks of Maine are put to such tricks is proof that the prohibition law is being enforced. True enough. But of what value is that enforcement to their kidneys? In what way does it save them from the jim-jams? Enforced or not enforced, who lacks liqitor in that boozy old State?
Baltimore’s neglect of the grave of Sidney Lanier, to which Dr. Edwin Mims called attention a week or so ago, is not a thing to ve regarded with complacency by the civilized Baltimorean. Lanier, like Poe, is one of the glories of our city history, but, like Poe again, he has got little gratitude in Baltimore. It was a quarter of a century after Poe’s death before the people of Baltimore marked his grave. Lanter has been dead since 1881, and his grave still lacks the simplest stone. It is in a cemetery filled with grandiose monuments to nobodies.
Obviously, the place for a Lanier monument is at Homewood, in the new grounds of the Johns Hopkins University. The poet came to the university when both were young and each had a profound influence upon the other. Lanier, when he reached Baltimore, was not a man of much education. He had passed through a fourth-rate, fresh-water college, he had taught in another such place and he had done a lot of unordered reading. His associations at Hopkins gave his intelligence direction and training. Good books and contact with fine minds did wonders for him. He became a poet of very high quality, and a critic of the utmost sagacity and originality.
Lanier’s critical work, indeed, was probably of far more importance than his poetry, though it is as a poet that he is still chiefly known. His book on “The Science of English Verse” was as revolutionary, in its way, as Berlioz’s book on the orchestra. It cleared away the accumlated pedantic rubbish of centuries and put English prosody upon a new and scientific basis. It remains today, after more than a generation, the most penetrating work upon the subject. All subsequent inquiry his frankly started from it.
The parallels in the careers of Poe and Lanier are many and curious. Both were Southern born; both found opportunity in Baltimore; both died here. The verse of each is confined to a single volume of moderate size; each was distinguished as a daring and iconoclastic critic. Poe died at 40, Lanier at 39; both were given resting place in death by strangers. Both labored manfully against infirmity; both tasted the most bitter poverty. And both have been the victims of that flamboyant, sophomoric, parochial overpraise which passes for criticism in the South.
Incidentally, what has become of the proposed monument to Poe? A year or so ago the job hounds of the City Council were disputing over its site, but since then nothing has been heard of it. The Poe Memorial Association, unless I err, wants to put the monument in Mount Vernon Square, while the job hounds favor University Parkway. Why not let the job hounds have their way? And why doesn’t some one start a fund for a monument at Homewood to the late Daniel Coit Gilman, the man who did more than all others to build up the Johns Hopkins University?
Do I betray a confidence when I announce that the Hon. Jacobus Hook, R. T., is to receive the dignity of Kommerzienrat from H. I. M. the Kaiser Wilhelm II?
Will the writer of the letter signed “Dolores” kindly send me her name and address?