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had written but little previous to that time, but HELEN HUNT JACKSON.
now her pen became her solace, and from then on
until her death, August 12th, 1885, she wrote unMERICA has been the birth-place of a number
ceasingly. Her published works are “Verses of female poets that have given to their coun
(Boston, 1871); “Bits of Travel” (1872); “Bits of try some of the sweetest songs in the English
Talk About Home Matters" (1873); “The Story tongue. Women who have been revered and loved
of Boon” (Boston, 1874); “ Bits of Talk in Verse for the words of cheer and inspiration they gave to
and Prose,” for young folks, (Boston, 1876); “Mercy mankind, yet I doubt if any among them have ever
Philbrick's Choice" (Boston, 1876); “Hetty's received the same measure of love, the same
Strange History” (Boston, 1877); “ Bits of Travel amount of reverence, or have called forth the same
at Home" (Boston, 1878); “Nelly's Silver-mine: feeling of kinship as Helen Hunt Jackson. Nor is
A Story of Colorado Life” (Boston, 1876); “Letthis to be wondered at, for no other writer has ever
ters from a Cat” (Boston, 1878); “Mammy Tittletouched so closely upon kindred themes; has ever
back and Her Family: A True Story of Seventeen so nearly reached the heart and the sensibilities.
Cats" (Boston, 1881); “A Century of Dishonor” The Carey sisters probably came the nearest to this
(New York, 1881); “The Training of Children in their writings, and May Riley Smith has the
(New York, 1882); “Ramona " (Boston, 1884); faculty of clothing every-day events with a pathetic
"The Hunter Cats of Connorloa” (Boston, 1884); grace that voices the sentiments of her readers as
* Zeph: A Post-humous Story" (Boston, 1885); they could not themselves; but while these later
Glimpses of Three Coasts" (Boston, 1886); “Sonnamed have succeeded but in part in expressing
nets and Lyrics ” (Boston, 1886); “Between and giving utterance to the only half-acknowledged
Whiles" (Boston, 1887); “The Procession of tenderness within us, which we may feel but cannot
Flowers in Colorado” (Boston, 1887); with Kinney, speak, Helen Hunt has laid bare the whole recesses
Abbott, “Condition and Needs of the Mission Inof the heart. Hers was a wonderful insight into
dians of California,” published by the United States human nature. Such intuition must have been
government, (Washington, 1883). In 1883 Mrs. heaven-born. Her songs are songs of faith, made
Hunt was appointed special commissioner to look perfect through suffering So strong her faith that
into the condition of the Mission Indians of Caliothers' faith must seem weak in comparison, and if
fornia. In 1875 she was married to William S. one were for a moment led to doubt the existence of Jackson, a banker of Colorado Springs. The years a God, that doubt must take Aight in a half-hour
passed in Colorado were happy ones. Her chosen with Helen Hunt. This trust and love which pre
resting place on the summit of Cheyenne mountain, dominated in her, and which pervaded all she wrote,
four miles from her home, has never been a lonely or thought, or did, was the underlying cause of her
one, for it has been the mecca of hundreds of tourmastery over human hearts. She had suffered, and
ists, until the path leading to her grave has become by her sufferings was made strong.
Who shall say
well worn from the footsteps of those who have she was not a chosen vessel to carry the Master's
gone to pay their tribute to her who was poet, sister message to other fainting hearts ?
and friend to the whole world.
J. W. Mrs. Jackson was born in Amherst, Mass., October 15th, 1830. She was a daughter of the wellknown Professor Nathan W. Fiske, of Amherst College. She was graduated from the Ipswich
They told me I was heir. I turned in haste, first husband, Major Edward B. Hunt, U. S. A.,
And ran to seek my treasure, lost his life in 1863 by the premature explosion
And wondered, as I ran, how it was placed; of a submarine battery he had invented. Two
If I should find a measure children, boys, were born to Major and Mrs. Of gold, or if the titles of fair lands Hunt, one living less than a year, the other dying
And houses would be laid within my hands. two years after the father's death had occurred. It was during this season of grief, the crucible I journeyed many roads; I knocked at gates; to her as yet, untried soul, that faith gained the I spoke to each wayfarer mastery, at the end of a year of bitter I met, and said, “A heritage awaits mental conflict, she came forth purified by her Me. Art not thou the bearer trial, ready to give to the world the benefit of her Of news ? Some message sent to me whereby experience for which she had paid so dearly. She I learn which way my new possessions lie?”
And when at last I stood before his face,
I knew him by no token Save subtle air of joy which filled the place;
Our greeting was not spoken; In solemn silence I received my share, Kneeling before my brother and “joint heir."
My share! No deed of house or spreading lands,
As I had dreamed; no measure
Had never held such treasure.
The shortest absence brings to every thought
Of those we love a solemn tenderness.
It is akin to death. Now we confess, Seeing the loneliness their loss has brought, That they were dearer far than we had taught
Ourselves to think. We see that nothing less
Than hope of their return could cheer or bless Our weary days. We wonder how, for aught
Or all of fault in them, we could heed Or anger, with their loving presence near,
Or wound them by the smallest word or deed.
Dear absent love of mine. It did not need
My share! The right like him to know all pain
Which hearts are made for knowing; The right to find in loss the surest gain;
To reap my joy from sowing In bitter tears; the right with him to keep A watch by day and night with all who weep.
My share! To-day men call it grief and death;
I see the joy and life to-morrow;
For this sweet legacy of sorrow;
Dear hearts, whose love has been so sweet to know,
A WILD ROSE OF SEPTEMBER.
O wild red rose, what wind has stayed
Till now thy summer of delights ? Where hid the south wind when he laid
His heart on thine, these autumn nights?