The Poems of William B. Tappan: Not Contained in a Former Volume (Classic Reprint)
Excerpt from The Poems of William B. Tappan: Not Contained in a Former Volume
There is a pleasure, which from its very nature must be confined to a few privileged individuals, and that is, to receive tokens of kindness from a stranger in a far country, who knows the person whom he thus visits in spirit, as a spirit only; with whose mind and heart he has become acquainted as they may have been shown to the world in his writings, or have attracted the esteem of his fellow creatures by a repu tation, (whether deserved or not, is not the question in this case) for some great or good deed, such as the good and the great themselves love to honour. To the former class, - those whose minds have been seen by others to whom their bodies are invi sible, - I happen to belong, and therefore, within the last thirty years especially, have often been saluted from every quarter of the four winds as they blow over the Bri tish Islands, and not seldom also as theysweep eastward athwart the Atlantic, by benevolent and Christian individuals, to whom my songs of sorrow, or of joy, of freedom, or of faith, and hope and love, have been endeared under circumstances which caused those peculiar sympathies to be awakened in their bosoms, of which the prototypes existed in my own, when I found words to give them utterance, and power of truth and nature enough to ensure them an entrance and a welcome wherever kindred souls came in contact with my compositions. You have very agreeably added one to the number of those who constitute my world of contemporary spi rits, yet in the ﬂesh, but to me known only as intelligences with whom I can hold communion of thought, and interchange of feeling, without the probability, or the necessity, of personal knowledge in this world, though with a hope, not irrational, nor unfounded, that amidst the ages of eternity and among the infinity of joysprepared by the Redeemer for those that love Him, we shall see and know as we are known, and have to congratulate each other on glory, honour and immortality, the portion of the blest in the kingdom of heaven, brighter, nobler and more excel lent than ever was' sought, or won, or en tered into the imagination to conceive, by those who gained most of the world, and the good the world has to give, yet found it all too little for their wants.
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