Posts Tagged ‘Poetry’

Soldier, We Do Not Forget

May 25, 2013

MEMORIAL DAY, MAY 30TH.

Lest we forget those who fought for the Liberties which we enjoy, may the day be fittingly observed.

MEMORIAL DAY

Soldier, we do not forget;
Purple pansies, mignonette
Show where mourning hearts are met.
Though you’ve traveled farther yet,
Past the worry and the fret
Where a scarlet sun has set.
Vivid rose and violet
On your grave with tears are wet;
Soldier, we do not forget.

Sheboygan Press (Sheboygan, Wisconsin) May 29, 1934

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She is So Very Gifted!

May 8, 2013

Gifted

By ANNE CAMPBELL

She is so very gifted!
If she should write a song,
The lyric would be garbled,
The melody all wrong.
But singing to her baby
She builds a world of peace
Where sorrow does not enter,
And dark forebodings cease.

She is so very gifted!
She cannot write a book,
But all the world grows brighter
Beneath her cheerful look.
Her mind is not creative,
But with homemaking hands
She fashions all the beauty
Her family demands.

She is so very gifted!
She tries sometimes to paint,
But on her day’s brief canvas
She sketches no complaint.
Her gifts are of the spirit,
And there is joyful proof
They do not go unnoticed
Beneath her star-crowned roof.

Syracuse Herald (Syracuse, New York) Apr 5, 1937

Old-Time Christmas Tree

December 21, 2012

Christmas Tree - child - Appleton Post Crescent WI 22 Dec 1922

The Old-Time Christmas Tree.

I oft recall the Christmas tree
That bloomed when we were boys;
It seems a mystery to me
How it could hold the toys
That clung in clusters on each limb
Like grapes upon a vine,
While many a colored candle’s glim
On baubles bright would shine.

All through the reeking branches’ rifts
The wayward, wandering wax
Would gurgle over gaudy gifts,
And leave long tallow tracks;
Soft pills of purple paraffine
Would punctuate the hair
Of dolls and make their tresses’ sheen
A polka-dot affair.

The limp wax-drippings, light and dark,
Seeped down without surcease,
Bedecking beasts in Noah’s ark
With rainbow stripes of grease;
And lo a miracle was wrought
When falling candle clots
The litheless little leopard caught
And changed the creature’s spots.

The tainted touch of tinted grease,
Made a kaleidoscope
Of many a toy; the lamb’s white fleece
Was flecked like mottled soap;
The dark-bay horse was dappled blue,
The elephant turned green,
And other beasts assumed a hue
That ne’er before was seen.

Now distance lends enchantment to
Those lights of long ago,
And oft we fancy that they won
Our hearts with radiant glow;
The Yuletide tree when we were young
Seems fairer far than all
The boyhood pictures that are hung
On memory’s wide wall.

— T.B. Chrystal in N.Y. World.

New Castle News (New Castle, Pennsylvania) Dec 23, 1912

A ‘Grave Yard’ in the Wat’ry Deep

December 17, 2012

watery grave - Drowning

Image from University of Virginia

From the Albany Argus.

LINES,

Suggested by the following paragraph, taken from the Argus of October 7

“There is a place in the Mississippi where so many vessels have been wrecked, that it is called the ‘Grave Yard.'”

A ‘Grave Yard’ in the wat’ry deep — a home beneath the wave,
For they, the mourned, the loved, the lost, the youthful and the brave!
Oh, loving hearts have broken, and eye grown dim with weeping,
For the thousand forms that lie, in that unseen ‘Grave Yard’ sleeping.

A ‘Grave Yard’ — but above the dead selection sheds no tear,
No mourner’s footsteps tread the ground, no sighs are echoed here.
Affection’s hand can never bring, at pensive evening hour,
And place o’er some reposing form, love’ purest gilt — a flower.

Nor can it rear, with pious care, the costly marble stone,
In memory of the faded form, closed eye, and silent tongue;
Ah no! the tears that fall for these, can no green grave bedew,
And memory must erect her shrine, in the warm hearts of the true.

Oh! the sea may boast its sparkling gems and its snow-white coral caves,
And the pure and precious pearl that lies, far down in its deep, blue waves;
But thou, majestic river, what wealth thy waters hide —
The heart’s most valued treasure, the bosom’s dearest pride!

One common fate, one common home, is found by youth and age;
One common resting place they share, the infant and the sage,
The same proud wave, perchance, that laid the grey-haired sire low,
Has dashed from childhood’s downy cheek, its warm, bewitching glow.

A wave, a single, crystal wave, has levelled manhood’s pride,
And frozen in its chill embraces, the life blood of the bride;
A wave has bowed the maiden’s form, and one tumultuous billow,
Has been to many a bright, young head, its last and coldest pillow.

See, bounding o’er the “Grave Yard,’ a vessel in its might,
It skims the water’s surface, like a sea-bird in its flight.
Oh many a long-lamented one those waters have in keeping —
Sail slowly o’er the hallowed spot, where the silent dead are sleeping.

It is an awful thought that the gay, the living tread
Above the wave-walled sepulchre of the calm and quiet dead!
It is a solemn thought, that should one more fast sweep by,
Far down in that dark and dread abode, those breathing forms must lie.

Sail slowly — and let every soul, that those waves on their bosom bear,
With chastened spirits lift the heart to heaven in fervent prayer,
That He who holds f— human life, in his own holy keeping,
May save them from the wat’ry waste, where the silent dead are sleeping.

ESTE LD.

Albany, Oct. 15, 1842

Wiskonsan Enquirer (Madison, Wisconsin) Dec 24, 1842

Letter to Santa

December 12, 2012

To Santa Claus - Appleton Post Crescent WI 23 Dec 1921

Appleton Post Crescent (Appleton, Wisconsin) Dec 23, 1921

Letter to Santa.

Dear Santa Claus: My coal bill
Is ninety twenty-four,
If you will take it off my hands,
I shall not ask for more.
I don’t care how you fix it,
Just so you let me out —
O, that would be a Christmas gift
Beyond a doubt.

Dear Santa Claus, my grocer
Wants money very badly,
If you will see him when you come,
I’ll leave it to you gladly.
I don’t care what you give him,
Just so the trade is fair —
O, that would be a Christmas gift
Beyond compare.

Dear Santa Claus, my butcher —
But do I grow prolix?
What say I send them all to you,
With leave for you to fix?
I don’t care how you fix them,
So long as they are paid —
But I expect too much of you,
I am afraid.

— St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

New Castle News (New Castle, Pennsylvania) Dec 21, 1912

Kitchen Police

December 10, 2012

kp duty - potato peeler

KITCHEN POLICE.
(K.P.)

(This poem presumably written by a soldier is valuable as indicating the saving sense of humor possessed by our men and which carries them through the difficult days of the training period and sustains them in the sterner and more trying days that follow.)

_______

Sitting here in the kitchen, peeling a bucket of spuds,
Wearing a dirty apron to cover my blue serge duds,
A hundred thousand in the bank, “Society man” — that’s me;
Just because I was late at roll call, they gave me a week’s K.P.

Sitting here in the kitchen, with slops all over my jeans;
Picking rocks and splinters out of a barrel of beans,
My thoughts have gone a-wandering to what I used to be
Before I missed that last post car and they gave me a week’s K.P.

I think of the nights I squandered, doing the barroom stunt;
Gee! what a sissy I was — what a hopeless, hopeless runt!
Oh, I was there with the girls, boys, and they called me a “lady’s man.”
What would they say if they saw me now, scraping a greasy pan.

The mess sergeant’s a slaver; he gives a man no rest.
The first cook is a villain, but I have the second best.
Oh, sure, boys, I enlisted to march away to war,
But they’ve got me here in the kitchen, doing the company chores.

A week policing the kitchen, watching the biscuits browned —
Me, who used to order two thousand men around.
I wonder what those two thousand would say if they saw me now
Washing a hundred dishes, ready for 6 o’clock chow?

Two months ago, in a greenhouse, I held Anita’s hand,
Told her that I had enlisted to fight for my native land.
She leaned her head on my shoulder, said she’d be proud of me;
She’d be proud, all right, if she saw me now, doing a week’s K.P.

Dumping the slush in the hogpan, scrubbing the kitchen floor,
Swabbing a slimy mush-pan until my hands are sore,
Fixing the hash for supper, putting ice in the tea —
Archibald Percival Knutty, “society man” — that’s me!

The Daily Northwestern (Oshkosh, Wisconsin) Jul 25, 1918

Tin Soldiers, Toy Soldiers, Wartime Toys

December 8, 2012

Tin Soldier Cut-Outs - Edwardsville Intelligencer IL 06 Dec 1941

He was only a little tine soldier then,
To be used as a battering ram;
Today he’s the pride of a nation wide —
He’s the nephew of Uncle Sam.

Edwardsville Intelligencer (Edwardsville, Illinois) Dec 6, 1941

Toyville Army 1 - Oakland Tribune CA 12 May 1918

THE Toyville army, marching
Into billets ‘neath a chair,
Discovered two tin soldier spies
Beneath the carpet there.

Toyville Army 2 - Oakland Tribune CA 12 May 1918

The captain sternly marched them out,
Their case and fate to settle.
They stood at ease with steady knees,
For they were men of mettle!

Toyville Army 3 - Oakland Tribune CA 12 May 1918

I’m glad Ted chanced to pass just then
And took a hand. He thrust
The two spies in his pocket,
To the captain’s great disgust!

Oakland Tribune (Oakland, California) May 12, 1918

Toyville Army 1 - Oakland Tribune CA 19 May 1918

THE Toyville army bravely marched
Across high table land,
Upon the table edge, some one
Forgot the right command!

Toyville Army 2 - Oakland Tribune CA 19 May 1918

No welcome “Halt!” to bid them stay,
So like the gallant host of yore,
Theirs not to question, but obey,
They fell in companies to the floor.

Oakland Tribune (Oakland, California) May 19, 1918

Wartime Christmas - Reno Evening Gazette NV - 16 Nov 1942

Reno Evening Gazette (Reno, Nevada) Nov 16, 1942

LITTLE TIN SOLDIER.

Little Tin Soldier, how stiff you stand
With your sword buckled on and your gun in your hand.
Would you hear aright should your captain say,
“Fall out, dismissed, well done — let’s play!”

Or would the Something that comes with drill
O’ershadow you, follow you, hinder you still —
And you hear like the beat of a distant tattoo,
“Count off, front and rear, one two .  .  .  one two?”

Time was, I am sure, though you look so grim
There’s a gleam in your eye, though ’tis often dim,
When your memory quickens and troubles you
As you quick-step, march — one two, one two.

Little Tin Soldier, how stiff you stand
With your sword buckled on and your gun in your hand.
Would you hear aright if I said what is true,
“I love you, my darling — I do, I do?”

— Ann Drew.

Syracuse Herald (Syracuse, New York) Jul 4, 1926

Be a Tin Soldier - Billings Gazette MT 08 Jul 1945

Billigns Gazette (Billings, Montana) Jul 8, 1945

Gareth to Lynette

December 6, 2012

arthur hughes - inspired by Tennyson's Gareth and Lynette

Image from ARTMAGICK

Poem in College Magazine.

The following poem which appeared in the University of Virginia Magazine, published by the students, was written by L. Travis White, of Frederick, who is studying law at the institution:

Gareth to Lynette.

Then Gareth: “Here be rules. I know but one —
To dash against mine enemy and to win.” — Tennyson.

More soft than silken strands the hair
That tumbles round thy temples fair,
Tossed by the summer air;
Like roses bloom thy cheeks;
The droning bee they near deceive,
When proffered sweetness to receive
Some brim-full flower he seeks.

Thine eyes, like twin stars on the deep,
Soft-mirrored when the billows sleeps
And moaning winds their silence keep,
Shine tenderly; yet seem
They like the dewdrops when the lawn
Gem-strewn, doth greet the Sun of dawn —
And mockingly they gleam.

Near thee the lark on tireless wing
Hovers his sweetest song to sing;
To thee the zephyrs tribute bring,
With violent-laden breath.
The buds whose fragrance is most sweet
Are gladly crushed beneath thy feet —
Thrice blest in such a death.

But thy heart is as hard to lover’s pain
Like the rocks beside the storm-swept main —
Against them dash, in vain, in vain,
The waves of a passionate sea;
Yet slow to ocean yields the land,
The proud rocks crumble into sand —
So will I conquer thee!

— L. Travis White.

The News (Frederick, Maryland) Dec 4, 1912

L Travis White - Class of 1911 - Frederick MD - The Frederick Post MD 15 Dec 1971

L. Travis White is number 4 in the picture above.

Frederick High School’s Class of 1911 is once again part of the scene at the local school, at least in the form of the official class photograph presented to the school recently by Robert J. DiDomenico, executive director of Goodwill Industries of Monocacy Valley Inc.

The full story of where the old fashioned studio picture spent the last 60 years will probably never be known, although it can easily be visualized gracing the living room of some proud graduate’s home.

Whatever its history, the picture complete with handsome frame and glass, turned up as part of an anonymous donation to Goodwill and was spotted by Mrs. Barbara Coulter, secretary to DiDomenico, who recognized it as an interesting bit of memorabilia for the school.

DiDomenico agreed that this was a fitting disposition for the photograph and it was presented to George Seaton, principal of Frederick High School.

The picture, taken in the era of the old Boys High School, now Elm Street Elementary School, reveals several points of contrast with more recent high school class photos. Most obvious, of course, is the fact that the class is composed of only 19 members, all boys.

It is also interesting to note that the students are pictured in a West Point type military uniform, an indication of the schools’ past presently reflected only in the nickname “Cadets,” used by Frederick High athletic teams.

The students’ haircuts, on the other hand, are a bit on the full side with moderate sideburns not too different from today’s more conservative styles.

Most familiar, however, are the surnames, most of which are still prominently represented in Frederick County today. No effort has been made to tell how many members of the class survived, but Principal Seaton would be pleased to hear from any who might still live in the area.

Names of those identified in the Smith Studio (of Frederick) photograph include: Clyde E. Burgee, Allen G. Quynn, Earl E. Zeigler, L. Ray Burgee, Louis A. Rice, James R. Keller, J. Ernest Haifleigh, R. Dorsey Sappington, Willis D. Witter, George L. Rothenhoefer, Dean W. Hendrickson, David L. Johnson, William H. Solt, Marvin L. Shirley, Prof. Amon Burgee, Edgar J. Eyler, J. Roger Fisher, L. Travis White, John L. Shaw and J.F. Minor Simpson.

The Frederick Post (Frederick, Maryland) Dec 15, 1971

L Travis White - Scholarship - The News - Frederick MD 06 Jun 1912

The News (Frederick, Maryland) Jun 6, 1912

L Travis White - Scholarship - The News - Frederick MD 20 Jun 1914

The News (Frederick, Maryland) Jun 20, 1914

Travis White El Paso - Caribel and Roxanna visit - The Frederick Post MD 11 Apr 1931

The Frederick Post (Frederick, Maryland) Apr 11, 1931

L Travis White - Odd Tricks - Bridge book cover

Image from Gamblers Book Club

From Bridge Guys – Bridge Books:

White, Littleton Travis – (July 3, 1894 – December 1973) – Littleton Travis White

Odd Tricks, c1934, Edited by Albert H. Morehead and Clifford A. Bender, Publisher: The Bridge World, Inc., New York City, United States; also Odd Tricks, 1978, Edited by Albert H. Morehead and Clifford A. Bender, Publisher: GBC Press, Las Vegas, United States, ISBN-10: 0896508102; also Odd Tricks, 1983, Edited by Albert H. Morehead and Clifford A. Bender, Publisher: Casino Press, ISBN-10: 0870190334 / ISBN-13: 9780870190339, LC: 34041970

Note: Mr. Paul Ryan has contributed this information in addition to a scanned version of the newspaper article in the El Paso Herald Post upon the publication of the bridge book. This information is included in a .pdf file for the interest of the bridge visitor and, in addition, a visually more acceptable version, also in a .pdf file format. Mr. Paul Ryan has also included the scanned version of the World War I Draft Registration Cards, 1917-1918, of Littleton Travis White and also the scanned information collected during the 1930 United States Federal Census. Also include is the Social Security

*     *     *     *     *

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR
The Work Done By The Just Government League:

[excerpt – L. Travis White’s mother was involved in women’s suffrage movement]

L Travis White - Mrs John Kearnes White - Suffragette - The News - Frederick MD 15 Dec 1915

The News (Frederick, Maryland) Dec 15, 1915

Littleton Travis White - Roxanna's Party - The News - Frederick MD 17 Dec 1901

The News (Frederick, Maryland) Dec 17, 1901

*     *     *

Evidently, his sister was a bit of an artist:

Roxanna White - Charcoal Drawing - The Frederick Post MD 15 Oct 1917

The Frederick Post (Frederick, Maryland) Oct 15, 1917

Campus map, St. John's College (MD)

Image from HCAP

L. Travis White’s sister, Roxanna, married the president of St. John’s College. What I found interesting were his comments to the Rotary Club about the educational revolution, and St. John’s “counter-revolution”:

COLLEGE HEAD TALKS TO CLUB

St. John’s System Explained To Rotarians By President

Educational counter-revolution by St. John’s College, Annapolis, shared discussion with the shortage of Maryland oysters as topics of discussion before the Wednesday luncheon meeting of the Frederick Rotary Club.

Dr. John Spangler Kieffer, president of St. John’s College and also of Annapolis’ Rotary, described the 100-book foundation of knowledge system inaugurated by the school in 1937.

W.R. Slemmer, chairman of the local Rotarians’ committee for an oyster-roast to be held later this month, changed the after-dinner talk of members from the day’s topic of  “Education in Revolution”, to “will we be able to get oysters to roast?”, when he refused to continue sale of tickets for the proposed affair, until weather conditions and the bivalve market assures delivery of the food.

Introduced by his uncle, Rev. Henri L.G. Kieffer, the speaker of the meeting explained St. John’s College new system as anomalous, in that it is designed to maintain the “aura of college aristocracy, with democratic ideals.”

The highly honored Harvard graduate was made president of the Annapolis college last year, succeeding Stringfellow Barr in continuing the “nationally observed new-trend for education, started in 1937.” President Kieffer’s wife, the former Miss Roxanna White, is a native of Frederick.

Called Revolutionary

Dr. Kieffer explained that the St. John’s program is actually a revolution against the nineteenth-century revolution in education. That classical education of the past hundred years was not the complete fundamental knowledge necessary to developments of laboratory sciences and that elective courses were a compromise which undergraduates are not capable of choosing.

He deplored over-specialization in teaching undergraduates and summed up the program of his college system, as one intended to complete adolescence of students by training the mind to think generally and adultly; thereby being acquainted with the “principles” of the civilization in which he will live.

“We are living through a revolutionary period, as evidenced by the present loss of standards, faith and belief in things,” Dr. Kieffer said, “There is skepticism, dogmatism, on every hand. There is a general lack of knowledge and faith in fundamentals. We have lost the stability of the nineteenth century minds, because the atomic bomb disproved Maxwell’s system of physics,” the speaker concluded.

The Frederick Post (Frederick, Maryland) Feb 12, 1948

*     *     *     *     *

Interesting “men vs. women” note in this article excerpt:

PARTY FOLLOWS FINAL SEMINAR

Mr. And Mrs. Kieffer Are Honored By Group At Library

Women may control the wealth of the country as statistics indicate, but it was the men who defended its economic system as opposed to the Communist theory in a lively final session of the Great Books Seminar in the C. Burr Arts Library, May 2 during the discussion of the Communist Manifesto. John S. Kieffer, director of adult education at St. John’s College, Annapolis, who has been conducting the Seminar, presented. The session concluded with a party given by Between-the Book-Ends Club in honor of Mr and Mrs. Kieffer….

Kieffer - Book Seminar - The Frederick Post MD 12 May 1952

The Frederick Post (Frederick, Maryland) May 12, 1952

*     * Census Records *     *

John Kearnes White, the father, doesn’t every appear to be with the family:

Littleton Travis White - 1900 census - Frederick MD

1900 Federal Census – Frederick, MD

Travis White - 1910 census - Frederick MD

1910 Federal Census – Frederick, MD

In 1920, Mrs. White and Roxanna are still living in Frederick, MD, sans father, and Littleton Travis White is a roomer in Virginia, practicing law.

*     *     *

By 1940, Littleton Travis White was finally married, and to quite the YOUNG lady:

Travis White - 1940 census - El Paso TX

Living in El Paso, Texas, with his mother-in-law, young wife, and baby daughter.

*     *     *     *     *

According to his mother’s obituary, she was a member of the United Daughters of the Confederacy:

Caribel Travis White - Obituary - The Frederick Post MD 30 Apr 1954

The Frederick Post (Frederick, Maryland) Apr 30, 1954

John Kearnes White - The White Rose

Travis’s father appears to have authored a book of poetry. The interesting part is the dedication:

John Kearnes White - to my mother

To My Mother, not My Wife.

HATHI TRUST Digital Library has the book online: THE WHITE ROSE

*     *     *     *     *

Littleton Travis White died in Annapolis, Maryland, while visiting his sister:

Travis White - Obituary - El Paso Herald-Post TX 08 Dec 1973

His death was front page news in the El Paso Herald-Post (El Paso, Texas) Dec 8, 1973

The End

All this for a poem!

Out of a Frederick Window

December 4, 2012

TP Fall Snow SA 1

Image from FrederickNewsPost.com

Out Of A Frederick Window.

Out of a Frederick window — a glimpse of a far off hill
Out of a Frederick window — a vale and a rippling rill;
Out of a Frederick window — a mountain with crown of snow,
And a long, white road through the valley that sweeps like a bowl below;
Out of a Frederick window — the fields of the winter wheat,
And over it all Catcoctin, with the town at its green-girt feet!

Out of a Frederick window — a window that looks to the west,
The beautiful blue hills dreaming the dream of the wintry rest;
Snow-crowned gleaming and splendid, somber when dusk drifts down
And the bells of the twilight echo from the spires of the beautiful town;
Out of a Frederick window — the old pike winding far,
The vales and the bending river, the peaks and the evening star!

Out of a Frederick window — a glimpse of the naked trees,
Braddock upon the summit, and the echo of melodies
When the bees in the summer orchards and the hillside birds set fire
To the heart of the listening dreamers as they sang in a sweetheart choir;
Out of a Frederick window — the meadows of furzo and bloom,
And love in a faded garden with her foot on a silver loom!

Out of a Frederick window — a car climbs over the hill,
The steel wires sing in the valley and cows come down to the rill;
The phantoms of old, sweet faces, the shadows of old friends, glide,
And a great dream breaks into morning with a young heart by my side;
Out of a Frederick window — the valleys, and there they lie,
The peaks of the loved Catoctin in the blue of a wintry sky!

— The Bentztown Bard in The Baltimore Sun.

The News (Frederick, Maryland) Dec 15, 1915

Cradle Robbers

December 2, 2012

russian fairy tale

Image from art mundus

CRADLE ROBBERS

(The bolsheviki have suppressed fairy tales dealing with kings, princes, princesses and references to the supernatural. — News Note.)

There, little Russ, don’t cry,
They’re crushing your dreams, I know,
For fairy-tale princes and fairy-tale kings
To bolshevik leaders are dangerous things,
And stories like that must go!
But we’ll read you a bolshevik pamphlet dry.
There, little Russ, don’t cry!

There, little Russ don’t cry,
They’ve robbed you of bliss, its true;
And the little stories you loved to hear
Of magical princesses sweet and dear
Have lately become taboo,
And the queens of the fairy-tales must die —
But there, little Russ, don’t cry!

There, little Russ, don’t cry,
Though they’ve taken those tales away,
No form of government ever stood
By filching the joy out of babyhood
And taking the fun from play;
Those tales will come back to you, bye and bye,
There, little Russ, don’t cry!

Appleton Post Crescent (Appleton, Wisconsin) Dec 23, 1921