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He keeps, where there is lack of light,
The loveliness of perfect sight.
Hark! how his human heart anon
Leaps with the bliss he looks upon ! -
Go forth, O perfect Heart and Eyes,
Stand in the crowd, and melodise !

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HAT then is the Poet, or Seer, as dis

tinguished from the philosopher, the man of science, the politician, the

tale-teller, and others with whom he has many points in common ? He is, indeed, a student as other students are, but he is emphatically the student who sees, who feels, who sings. The Poet, briefly described, is he whose existence constitutes a new experience—who sees life newly, assimilates it emotionally, and contrives to utter it musically. His qualities, therefore, are triune. His sight must be individual, his reception of impressions must be emotional, and his utterance must be musical. Deficiency in any one of the three qualities is fatal to his claims for office.

I. And first, as to the Glamour, the rarest and most important of all gifts; so rare, indeed, and so powerful, that it occasionally creates, in very despite of nature, the other poetic qualities. Yet that individual sight may exist in a character essentially unpoetic, in a temperament purely intellectual, might be proven by reference to more than one writer—notably, to a leading novelist. That proof, however, is immaterial. The point is, how to detect this individual sight, this Glamour, how to describe it,-how, in fact, to find a criterion which will prove this or that person to be or not to be a Seer.

The criterion is easily found and readily applied. We find it in the special intensity, the daring reiteration, the unwearisome tautology, of the utterance. The Seer is so occupied with his vision, so devoted in the contemplation of the new things which nature reserved for his special seeing, that he can only describe over and over again—in numberless ways—in infinite moods of grief, ecstasy, awe-the character of his sight. He has discovered a new link, and his business is to trace it to its uttermost consequences. He beholds the world as it has been, but under a new colouring. While small men are wandering up

and down the world, proclaiming a thousand discoveries, turning up countless moss-grown truths, the Seer is standing still and wrapt, gazing at the apparition, invisible to all eyes save his, holding his hand upon his heart in the exquisite trouble of perfect perception. And behold! in due time, his inspiration becomes godlike, insomuch as the invisible relation is incorporated in actual types, takes shape and being, and breathes and moves, and mingles in tangible glory into the approven culture of the world.

For, let it be noted, Nature is greedy of her truths, and generally ordains that the perception of one link in the chain of her relations is enough to make man great and sacerdotal; only twice, in supreme moments, she creates a Plato and a Shakespeare, proving the possibility, twice in time, of a sight imperfect but demi-godlike.

« Life is a stream of awful passions, yet grandeur of character is attainable if we dare the fatal fury of the torrent." Thus said the Greek tragedians, but how variously! The hopelessness of the struggle, yet the grandeur of struggling at all,

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