The Fire In
FIRE of some
unknown cause destroyed, on the 12th of February, on Lincoln
Day, that part of my garret which I used as a storage room and
where I kept my files.
All back numbers of my magazines, Greenwich Village, Bruno Chap-Books and Bruno's Weekly were
destroyed. Manuscripts of well-known authors, historical
documents, rare books, pamphlets which never can be
duplicated, material which I had collected for the last twelve
years — all went up in the smoke.
And better than ever do I know today that there is no
possession real which we do not carry with us constantly. Not
in our pockets, but in our hearts. Not the property which we
store in fireproof storehouses, or in safe deposit vaults;
even that might be destroyed by earthquakes, or by Zeppelins,
or other devices with which God and man manifest their
But all we have in the eternal possession of our mind — all
those things that we really know.
Knowledge is the power that cannot be destroyed.
Omnia mea mecum porto.
On Book Stall
AND so this,
the first number after the fire which partly destroyed my
garret, is the fitting occasion, dear reader, to invite you to
take a walk through that part of the city which starts on the
extremist boundaries of our village and whose important avenue
leads to the Public Library — that supreme mausoleum of the
citizens of the republic of letters; where are laid away, side
by side, the remains of those who were worshipped during life
and forgotten after their death and of those whom no one knew
while they were among us and whose real life began after they
had written the last page of their message to the world, a
world which has ears now for the dead man's words.
Will you come with me and walk for half an hour on that Via
Appia of New York where great men's work is put on shelves and
bundled up and can be viewed by those who feel like
worshipping where artists and writers found a friend who would
plead their cause better than the newspaper critic, literary
writer and the art editor. Let us go where the old worshipful
building of the Astor Library still stands and whose closed
shutters and deserted doorways and staircases remind one of
that eternal truth — sic transit gloria mundi! And not long
ago — scarcely eight years — all intellect of New York
assembled here on old Astor Place, in the midst of the old
landmarks of a New York of by-gone days. There they worked
diligently, and like in a bee-hive, gathered the honey to give
it to the world. And the world came to take the honey and
carried it to newspaper offices, to magazine editors and used
it for nourishing and for luxurious, dandy dishes and served
it to millions as bread and as dessert.
In those days of the old Astor Library, Fourth Avenue was the
leading booksellers' street of New York, and therefore, of the
And then the palace was built on Fifth Avenue, right in the
heart of the city, to receive the remains of the august man of
the world. The literary free-market, whose center for barter
and exchange had been on Astor Place, moved up to the new
comfortable quarters. Marble and big spaces, lackies in livery
and modern commercial office devices took the places of the
good old home-like library rooms. Railings did not separate
there the reader from the book shelves and the tables were
worn and ink-spotted; and where the authors of the books, in
their old-fashioned attire, with their grandfather's manners,
with their elegance and their "I don't care what you think of
me, world!" seemed so near to us who leaned over their books.
But those booksellers — no less lovers of books because they
sold them — remained in their shops on Fourth Avenue, in their
basements and their little shacks with outlandish displays of
book stalls and advertisements in old handwriting tacked to
their doors which seem to belong to another age, which seem to
be the remnants of another school of men. A good many of those
old friends of the frequenters of the library are gone. High
buildings are erected where they used to read books and sell
them to you — if you managed to get into their good graces.
Don't shake your head incredibly! Yes, such were those old
booksellers, who treated their books as you would treat your
friends, and who would introduce you to their friends only if
you were one with their spirit, — if they found in you "that
certain something" which invites lovers of books into a
society of lovers of men.
Tempora mutantur et nos mutamur in illis! Mr. Edison put the
candle out of use. His electric rails brought space and time
into relations which enable the individual to live a life of
Greek and Latin, the old essayists of yore, and the art of
writing letters are foreign to most of us. To have read your
Caesar and scanned your Homer makes you a scholar for lifetime
today. And to have really read Horace and to have dived into
Plato and Aeschylus entitles you to the highest honors
newspapers, magazines and the country-at-large have to award.
If you know how to write about these things and how to apply
your knowledge so that the magazine editor can have it
illustrated by some imitators of Bruneleschie or Bakst, that
your work can appear serially in an unobjectionable family
paper which is sold in two million copies by boys and girls
who earn in such a way a "liberal education in business
colleges;" — that it can be printed in book form to be bought
by all public libraries and Carnegie and college and
university libraries, and if it has such merits that the music
of a Viennese operetta composer can be harmoniously combined
with the words, making for a season's Broadway success.
Otherwise you have the best chance to starve and to be looked
upon as a strange sort of a chap.
A few are left of those old book dealers who used to dwell on
Fourth Avenue and whom bookworms used to persuade to part with
this or that precious tome. How those booksellers differed
from those of our own times; they knew their Latin and their
Greek, they knew not only first editions and standard editions
from the catalogs of auction sales and "Book Prices Current"
but they knew the contents of the books; they would give an
equal chance to the well known author whom they liked and to
the unknown man whose pamphlet they discovered; reading and
"discovering" was their chief occupation, selling books a mere
incident — a very necessary one, of course, but still an
incident only. They all had their hobbies. One would be
interested in Mark Twain and would have stored away in some
obscure comer of his book shelves, as the kohinoor of his
possessions, a rare pamphlet unknown to the world, and perhaps
autographed by the author himself. Another one would be an
enthusiast of Poe and would carefully gather precious items
and show them to those he really liked — like a king who
bestows upon the subject he wishes to honor a high order.
Authors and would-be authors found in these dingy shops lit by
a flickering gas jet, in the atmosphere of dust and of old
paper, congenial gathering places. O. Henry was a well-known
habitué of the bookshops on Fourth Avenue, and
especially one situated in a basement to which led rickety
wooden stairs was his favorite one. He used to rummage around
the French books its proprietor kept and ask for translations
and explanations, but he rarely bought.
Did I say a few of those shops are still preserved? — and did
I invite you to come along and take a walk on Book Stall Row?
They are, but don't be disappointed. They all have electric
lights and cash registers and only far back behind the dust
covered desk of the proprietor — if you succeed in lifting the
business mask from his face — will you find the book dealer
after your heart, whose face beams because he has succeeded in
getting this or that rare item. And if you have that "certain
something" of the bookworm which finds a response in his
heart, he will forget his "Book Prices Current" and he will
talk to you just to your heart's delight. And his hands and
your hands will rest on the mutual friend — the book.
Here, I said, in these shops, which, if the proprietor has
business genius and progresses with the spirit of the time,
will become types of the ready-to-order,
department-store-like-conducted book stores, are the temporary
interment places of litterateurs who are either dead and not
yet discovered or who are alive and therefore not apt to be
discovered, or who are both dead and discovered. But their
works have not yet succeeded in bringing high auction prices
and therefore are not purchased by the libraries in their
palatial mausoleums where they will find their final
resting-place some day. To these shops the litterateur
pilgrimages if he wishes to dispose of his books — not because
his shelves or his library are too crowded but because he has
decided that a meal once in a while will be highly appreciated
by his physical body. Down here to these basements or to these
shacks crowded in by big business buildings he creeps
stealthily and sells the books of his friends, given him in
his better days with their inscriptions of friendship. He is
ashamed of his act, but landladies have to get rent and
Child's has a cash register which must record every sale of
the day, even the most insignificant cup of coffee and the
thinnest cheese sandwich.
Here to these shops the litterateur, who ventured into the
field of being his own publisher and editor of a short-lived
magazine brings bundles of unsold numbers of his publication
which were returned to him with many regrets and the bill for
"'return charges by the pound" from news dealers and from news
companies. The book store buys them, and a dollar is a dollar
— even if you have to procure it with five hundred or a
thousand copies of something you put your greatest hopes upon.
No reflection is made upon the bookseller! He gives you more
than you could get anywhere else. What other book dealer in
this city would buy old paper — and it is nothing but old
paper so long as "Book Prices Current" doesn't mention the
magazine's name and its rarity, and therefore, the goodness of
Here, to these shops, landladies bring the trunks which they
did not permit to leave their premises because the
unfortunate owner failed to pay his three dollars per week,
and his literary future was too ample a security for her to
continue to trust. And how many rejected manuscripts — often
rejected because of their merit — will be found in that
baggage hastily thrown together by her after she has locked
the door upon him! How many letters will they contain showing
the man in the light others saw him and wrote to him what to
do and what not to do!
Here, to these shops, the unfortunate woman travels if her
husband — the writer or the artist — is sick and doctor bills
have to be paid, and again, that curse of everybody's life —
rent bills and board bills.
And here finally is sold the worldly possessions of him who
has laid away his pen forever, whom the rent collector for the
typewriter will not bother again. His most cherished books and
letters from fellow sufferers on the hard road to literary
success and those benevolent lines of those who "got there,"
his scrapbooks and perhaps his diary to contribute to the
receipts of undertaker and cemetery company.
we live in an age where figures are staring in your face
wherever you turn. Churches, pass the baskets! Charity is
standardized after the most efficient business methods of the
"Money, I want money!" is written in big, black broad letters
over men and things. Therefore, it is up to you to eliminate
money wherever you feel it a disturbing element. It is up to
you to be the magician who charms away the things that can
never "disappear'' as everybody knows. Don't think of the rent
and of the bills and of the payrolls to clerks that these
booksellers have to pay but see them as I do back there in the
dark comer of their shops — unlighted by electricity, back of
a paper-and-dust-covered desk, reading on quiet afternoons and
evenings when business is at a standstill and book buyers do
not require their services, — reading their favorites, those
books they will not sell if you are not lucky and strike them
at a time when bills are due, when rent has to be paid.
Tell Us Why They Act
I have not taken in a vaudeville show for quite a while. I
have seen in the newspapers concerning the work of our
vaudeville actors, several pages each week. And so I went to
the Palace one night last week. The chairs are very
comfortable and the ventilation is excellent. So it is
possible to exist physically.
But how much humanity is wasted on the vaudeville stage! These
men and women surely must have a reason for doing their silly
acts over and over again for forty weeks every year!
There was Ruth St. Denis, for instance. Ella Wheeler Wilcox
was down at my garret the morning after I had seen Ruth. The
famous poetess adores Ruth; her husband adores Ruth, too. They
saw her for the first time in Paris, some years ago. ''She is
adoration, she is a prayer, she is a sermon,'' Mr. Wilcox
remarked after the curtain had rung down. Mrs. Wilcox was of
the same opinion. Sermons and sermons are different. So are
prayers. Mine surely differ from those of the Wilcox couple.
"Why do they act?" I wanted to satisfy my curiosity. Here are
the answers that I received from a few of the headliners at
present features in Broadway theaters and vaudeville houses.
Gaby Deslys (in Stop! Look! and Listen! at the Globe) —
"Because I love it — I like money much, but my art, ah, that
is the thing I like very much, much more."
Harry Pilcer (also at the Globe) — "Because eight per doesn't hold
any charms for me."
Harry Fox (in Stop! Look! and Listen also at the Globe) — "To
get my hot meat. This is the life."
Joseph Santley (also at the Globe) — "Merely to keep me out of
And here are a few who appear at present at the Palace:
Harry Carroll: "To get out of a contract with a music
Paul Morton and wife, Naomi Glass (in a vaudeville sketch):
"We need the cash — that's all!"
The Dolly Sisters (in a vaudeville sketch): "Because of our
rapid success, because of the money that's in it, and because
we can't keep our feet on the ground."
Any House in the
SUMMERFIELD is a very bad man. He loves his wife, or at least
he loved his wife very tenderly, fourteen years before the
curtain rose. In those days he had been a successful lawyer,
with indisputable business integrity. And then — she died. He
locked the chamber in which she had been an invalid before her
death and it remained for years a closed room in the house. He
kept the key in his pocket, and every member of his household
tiptoed when passing this door, and nobody dared mention its
existence, or the mother's name in his presence. Papa
Summerfield killed his grief and his love in business ambition
and anything that came along was good enough as long as it
kept his mind busy and prevented him from thinking. He also
developed into a house tyrant, forbidding the two daughters
the men of their choice, and turning them coldly from house
and hearth after they decided to become wives and mothers. But
Papa Summerfield has a "better self.'' And this better self is
of utmost importance to the play. It really is the nucleus of
the play. The better self appears in a not any more
unaccustomed way on the stage. It is Mr. Summerfield's double.
It looks like Mr. Summerfield, it parts its hair in the same
remarkable way that Mr. Summerfield parts his, from forehead
to neck, it wears the same picturesque necktie and clothes,
and appears at opportune moments in a spotlight and tries to
reason with his "evil self."
And there is that great big corporation committee that wishes
to buy the honesty of Mr. Summerfield with a vice-presidency,
and with fat fees, and there is the honest young man who
cannot continue to be secretary to Mr. Summerfield because he
cannot bear the idea that his revered master will do something
dishonest. This secretary also has a little side interest
which his heroic standpoint brings to a happy conclusion.
David, that is his name, has won the heart of the youngest
daughter of Mr. Summerfield, and now, in the sublime moment
when she realizes the "evil self" of Papa, she decides to
follow David and take up with him the struggles of life. And
then, there is a highly melodramatic private conversation
between "better self" and "evil self" of Papa Summerfield in
the death-chamber of the departed wife. It is one of those
scenes that are enjoyed by cooks and chambermaids, digested
after working hours from those ominous paper covered thick
volumes known ordinarily as dime novels, whose price has been
raised to twenty-five cents. It would be enjoyed as a scene
commonly known as one "that gives you the creeps," that
"starts the goose-flesh."
Papa Summerfield leaves the mysterious death-chamber of his
wife and returns to his library.
Enter all persons in question as there are: the honest
secretary with the youngest daughter ready to leave forever,
the disinherited daughter, who has a baby at home and the
son-in- law "who shall never cross this threshold again." They
expect a parting for life. But lo! Old man Summerfield is his
"better self" again. "You all can remain," says he; "I have
thought the matter over and I am going to join forces with my
sons-in-law. Honesty will lead us to success. David, I welcome
as the husband of my youngest daughter______."
One looked expectantly toward the door; but the nursemaid with
the baby upon her arm did not appear.
Owen Davis and Robert Davis are the "two selves" that
manufactured this show piece. One might be a very successful
magazine editor, and an expert in selecting and purchasing the
kind of stuff that people are supposed to like in our popular
magazines. But a successful career of this sort is poor
experience to write a drama for American theater-goers. Even
such features as there were on the program, "that the curtain
never rises and never is rung down between the acts and scenes
of 'Any House'," is an insufficient feature after the street
exterior of the house is lifted and the living room of this
fashionable mansion is right next to the sidewalk. The
appearance of the personified better self of a man is as old
as the development of stage tricks. It was used in France and
Germany to much better advantage early in the Eighteenth
Papa Summerfield saved the situation temporarily by excellent
acting. He was "the evil self" of a man as well impersonated
as it is in real life. But that "better self" was just a poor
attempt at something unknown. At what? Ask Mr. Davis!
One must be a creator and a critic, and sincere in everything
in life and in art in order to be able to write a drama.
The editor, the able editor of popular magazines, might do
well to follow his real métier: to write vaudeville
Hassan and His
AND it was at
the hour of the full moon, the doors of the castle were pushed
open and there entered silently into the garden, Hassan and
his seven wives, who crossed over to the melodiously splashing
fountain, disrobed, and seated themselves in a semi-circle.
And Hassan Bedr-ed Din said:
"I am your master, creatures of the curved rib, but verily
rather would I be a hunchback beggar than your master solely!
Because my soul is thirsty for love."
And he looked into the deer-like eyes of Butheines:
"What is the utmost that you can do for me, woman?"
"Singing and dancing will I do for thee, oh lord!"
Hassan shrugged his shoulders and turned to Kuttel Kulub:
"And you also, only singing and dancing?"
"I will tell you a thousand fairy tales: About the Prince who
was turned to stone, about the veziers of the King Junan, and
Isrit and about the old Scheichs."
"What can you give me, Scherczade?"
"Every lust of the body, lord! My blood boils like the wind of
Nushet-es-Saman said: "I can be true to you, from the bottom
of my heart, oh Hassan! And not because I have to!"
And Sophia: "I can relate to you the works of the Prophet, and
I can explain them, and I know the secrets of the stars!"
And the dark-haired Dunjaisaid, the one with the queen-like
figure, fell to the feet of Hassan, covering them with kisses,
and her voice vibrated like leaves in a hurricane: "I could
die for thee, oh lord!"
A happy smile passed over the face of the master, and he
The seventh woman sat still unquestioned, near the fountain.
And she opened her mouth and said: "Why should I keep silent
and make a secret of my love, because you, oh Hassan, do not
look at me?"
Hassan smiled snobbishly: "Arise! What on earth could you do
for me after Dunjaisaid is ready to die for me?"
"I could live for you, oh Lord!"
After the Persian by Guido Bruno
A BLACK crow
flapped his wings in a dead tree.
At that moment I was born.
A camel awoke, stretched and wandered away over the desert;
just then my mate came into being.
We met quite accidentally at Dajeeling, married, raised five
children, built a house and kept a cat.
Later, we died and were buried in the same grave.
This completes our history . . .
Not that it does anybody any good.
By Richard Aldington
WHEN I was
hungry and implored them, they said: "The sun-beetle eats
dung: imitate him."
I implored them for my life's sake and they replied: "Last
year's roses are dead; why should you live?"
(Three years later)
THEY came to
me and said: "You must aid us for the sake of our God and our
I replied: "Your god is a beetle and your world a ball of
But they returned and said: "You must give your life to defend
And I answered: "Though a million of you die, next spring
shall not lack roses."
The Egoist, London
SHE walked, an
Created not, mankindness to deceive.
she, "Why are they draped so?
should upholstered be by men?"
London Office of BRUNO'S WEEKLY,
18 St. Charles Square, New Kensington
January 31st, 1916
BERNHARDT is doubtless a brave woman, but is she discreet?
Undeterred by her great age or her physical infirmity she
insists on appearing in public. There should be, as in Russia,
a law forbidding actresses over forty-five or fifty from
sacrificing their reputations, their beautiful memories to a
Of course, the great public here doesn't take this view.
Anyone to whom it has once given admiration or affection is
forever sacred to it. We have comedians in London who have
lived successfully for a dozen years on one good joke or play.
Bernhardt has been at the Coliseum this week with her voice —
still marvelous to say, not without magic — and — poor thing!
— her artificial limb. She recited Les Cathidrales, sitting in a great
throne-like chair the while, and then acted in Du Theatre au Champ d' Honneur,
a little war piece. The latter was rather dreadful, but the
Coliseum audience, one of the stupidest and most sentimental
in London, was apparently enthralled.
At the Shaftesbury Theatre we have had another interesting
though not quite successful entertainment this week. It is
another case of a musician endeavoring to digest a literary
masterpiece much in the way that Liza Lehmann did with Everyman, as I mentioned
in my last letter. This time it is Sir Charles Stanford who
has endeavored to turn Sheridan's Critic into a kind of music play or comedy
with music. The result is not spontaneously successful. Sir
Charles has no very light gift of musical humor and some of
his musical jokes are very heavy indeed. The composer has
mixed original music with parodies of Wagner, Strauss, Debussy
and the old style of Italian opera like Trovatore. Sheridan is
good and Sir Charles Stanford is good in his own way as a
composer of light academic work and a professor of
distinction, but the combination is unsatisfactory.
Quite a number of French and Belgian books and reviews
continue to be printed and published in England. The Paris
firm of Figuiere has a printing works at Cardiff — "The Welsh
Outlook Press." There is a company of publishers in London,
issuing new novels and other books in French, in the ordinary
French format with yellow paper covers. Belgian and French
novelists in veile issue their works in this way. Et jai vouler la Paix, by
Andre Spire, is just published by the Egoist. Spire, who has
passed most of the time since the outbreak of the war in
Nancy, close to the firing line, has been recently engaged in
buying leather for the French Government, and a little while
ago paid a business visit to London. I did not see him, but he
was taken to the Café Royal, I believe, to meet the
poets and painters, and now, chiefly through the
instrumentality of my friend, Richard Aldington, I fancy, we
have this little volume of verse. The following is taken from
a poem called Images,
written at Nancy in September 1914:
Mais pentends le canon
aux portes de ma ville;
Je vols sur nos canaux,
nos places et nos rues
Tes troupeaux de
Je vois tes carbillards
suivis de Veterans et de drapeaux.
Et tes paysans fuir avec
Pleines de matelas, de
femmes et d'enfants
Et je m'asseois.
Oh! Silence! Silence! .
Jusqu'an jour ou ces
corps defaits, ces visages hagards,
Ces cris, ces pleurs,
ces lignes, ces pus, ces puanteuos,
Une plus imperieuse
image: la Victoire,
Les aura deloges de nos
zeux, de nos coeurs.
Thus there emerges from the poem the triumphant motive: which,
perhaps, America, happy in the possession of peace, does not
quite understand. I find in many American papers and reviews a
frequent expression of commiseration for us in Europe with our
terrible war. It is true that it is a horrible enough affair
and that the amount of misery and tragedy in Europe is
something fearful to contemplate, but there is, at the same
time, an acceptance of it, a recognition that it is the
eventable contrast against which joy shines, a kind of pride
in it, in fact.
Among new novels, Arnold Bennett's These Twain, calls for a line, though since
it has probably been published simultaneously in America, you
will have heard all about it long before this letter appears.
An absurd book though of which probably you will not hear has
just been issued in honor of Hilaire Belloc, who has risen to
considerable eminence of late, owing to his false prophesies
on the subject of the war. Two young men who should know
better have perpetrated this fatuity — C. Creighton Mandell
and E. Shanks. The book is divided into chapters such as Mr.
Belloc and the Public, Mr. Belloc and Europe, Mr. Belloc and
the Future, and so on. Perhaps you don't even know who Hilaire
But that I should not seem to give you notice only of bad or
foolish books let me end by mentioning one that is excellent —
Professor G. Baldwin Brown's Arts in Early England, of which Volumes III
and IV have just appeared. It is full of learning and
Magazines of the Week
literature translated originally during the Crimean War and
refreshed sporadically during the Russo-Japanese struggles is
being warmed up and rehashed and served on toast in England
since the outbreak of the European struggles. As the good old
boarding-house woman knows well what to do with her Sunday
chicken on Monday, Tuesday and the subsequent days, so the
publishers on Fleet Street fish out from their morgues hurried
translations and then they are reprinted cheaply and fed to
The modem authors, of whom there exist a German or French
translation, are being done into English by translators now
"from the original Russian." Just look at these translations
which arrive with every English boat. I daresay that at least
two-thirds of these books came to England via France and via
Germany. Russian can be translated into English. But only by
such as have an excellent knowledge of English and a fair
knowledge of Russian. There is too much German and French
flavor and spirit in these Russian translations of our days.
The wonderful primitive way of expressing situations by
comparisons, of picturing life through the most difficult
mosaic of life in detail is lost.
The American translations are far better. Russia is nearer to
the heart of America than to the heart of England. Russia is
to America the representative of everything Slavic in Europe.
The Slavic element is very vital in our everyday life. The
melancholy of those struggling for freedom — no matter if
spiritual or financial — is well known to us. The technical
knowledge of the language has a big assistant: the sympathy of
translator and of reader.
The Russia of a Gogol, the Russia of an Arzibasheff with the
struggling minority against the tyrannies of a Czardom by
"God's grace" against oppressors who want Russia's financial
downfall, who want slaves in spirit and meek servants instead
of free men, must find a sympathetic echo in the hearts of
These translations, as published during the past year by Mr.
Huebsch, and lately by Mr. Knopf (whose address, by the way,
is in no directory, and letters to whom are being sent back as
undeliverable constantly), are not only superior from a
technical standpoint or from the standpoint of a linguist, but
they really carry to us THE message. The great Russian
authors, who are artists, apostles of a new and better era for
their beloved Russia, and leaders of their people at large at
the same time, speak to us in their own language. In most of
the English translations they seem to be using a megaphone.
While reading a few days ago in a Bohemian magazine that Oscar
Wilde's Reading Gaol had been translated into Bohemian and
into Serbian recently and sent in thousands of copies to
military concentration camps, I remembered another singer amid
prison walls — one who suffered in Russian prisons and such
torture houses as the Schluesselburg, twenty-five years of his
life for the gravest crime one can commit in Russia; he was an
independent editor of a paper that should tell his readers the
truth and nothing but the truth. Nicholas Alexandrovitch
Morosow, son of a nobleman and a peasant woman, after a
liberal education in colleges and universities, decided, at
the age of nineteen, to join the group of young Socialists
which went, in 1874, preaching through the country, trying to
make men and women see the real value of life.
He went to St. Petersburg and was editor in quick succession
of those three journals that were severely persecuted by the
Russian Government. He left Russia, warned by a good friend
that there was a warrant out against him. But he would not
have been a Russian, a real Russian, if he could have kept out
of his country for the rest of his life. And he came back.
Everything might be rotten in Russia, systems and
administrations; but the filing-index on which are kept the
names of those that offend the ''sacrosanct person of the
Czar" or dare to suggest a better Russia, free of graft and
injustice, is kept in constant working order. Morosow was
arrested the same second he crossed the boundaries of Holy
Russia. He was sentenced to life imprisonment.
Longing for freedom, for the freedom of his nation, had been
the impetus of his life. After he lost his own personal
freedom, he knew so much better how his nation in bondage
suffered, how it was destined to suffer for centuries to come.
All his strength, all his sentimentality, all his love for his
nation, for clean, pure air and for blue skies, and all the
hopes and imagination of a new, of a free Russia are the
threads with which he wove that wonderful Gobelin, his life
work, that he started, worked upon and finished in the
hopeless leaden misery of Russian prisons: his prison song.
One distinction has the second number of this magazine which
is everything but contemporary; the bad poet, who made a name
for himself in a weekly book-trade paper, unjustly called Book
Review, by interviewing similarly bad poets, is not among
their contributors. Eleven names were contained in the initial
issue of this new poetical gift that Washington, D. C. has
bestowed upon us and if it loses every month one contributor,
the December issue will be up to the highest expectations.
This is a new periodical, whose Volume 1, Number 1, has
arrived at our desk. "Edited and owned by the people," it
says. It contains effusions against the policy of
preparedness. Who is this "people?"
The general issue of this psychic magazine contains valuable
information for our poets.
"Those who scoff at the thought that Spirit, or spirits,
respond to special invitation to be present at gatherings of
mortals at specific times and places may explain why a number
of Alethian Students who had never previously produced a line
of verse, have spontaneously delivered commendable poetry at
our lecture classes."
"The essence of Strindberg," by Harold Berman, is an
interesting attempt to understand and to appreciate "the
deep-rooted mysticism with an original and dual outlook upon
life as the motives underlying the enigmatic personality of
"The Threefold Admonishment" is another one of Arthur
Schnitzler's stories, translated from the German, by Pierre
Loving. The efforts of Mr. Loving to introduce to us this
eminent Viennese writer are very laudable, but he chooses
Schnitzler's early work. Why not try to give us some of his
best? Those bits, full of life, and still of a rare quietness
of which he has proved master?
In Our Village
GOUGH and Lindsey Cooper joined the small shop movement in the
Village and opened a costume shop for the designing and
creating of fancy dress costumes and modern clothes. Miss
Gough is doing the designing. She has an unique color sense
and she is proud of the wide opportunity she had for
expression, not only in costuming, but in spectacular stage
setting! "She also claims priority right to the daring color
combinations regarded dubiously by the Academicians before the
coming of Bakst."
And daring is the interior of the shop. The floor is tomato
red, the walls are black, yellow and turquoise, the color is
splashed on the walls as by the ire of genius. Of genius that
simply must express itself in vivid glaring colors and that
wouldn't care to sit even in a chair or on a stool which does
not carry the flaming message to its organism in repose.
Therefore, orange and lavender seating occasions.
Two large figures of yellow cambric, with disarranged
anatomies, stand in the show window, like heralds of a new
And Miss Cooper, the director of the institution, assures that
the faithful came from the first day, immediately after the
yellow cambrics had hit their eyes. A large number of
costumes, worn at the recent Censors Ball and the Beaux Arts'
party emanated from here, and the Liberal Club Ball and the
Masses' Ball will be vivid and glaring witnesses of this new
shop in Our Village.
Alice Palmer, she of the Sunflower Shop, has opened The
Village Store and announces that its mission will be a ''Gift
Shop." She will sell odd bits of brass, china, wood, furniture
and souvenirs, at reasonable prices.
A frequent visitor to the Village during the past weeks has
been Joseph Louis French, the poet. He contemplates a new
edition of his corrected works, poems that have appeared
during the past twenty years in magazines and periodicals in
the United States and England.
Charles Keeler has united many of his poems in a volume that
will soon be published by Laurence Gomme, "in his little shop
around the comer." They are called "Victory," and contain some
of Mr. Keeler's best work.
Bernhardt Wall, the etcher, has conceived the idea of a series
of preparedness pictures, to be produced as movie cartoons. He
is hard at work at them and contemplating: the acceptance of
one of the many offers he has received from film companies.
Heloise Haynes plans for her many friends and admirers an
informal dance for Saturday, the 19th, which will take place
in her "Wardrobe."
A group of young Russian painters will exhibit a
representative selection of their paintings in Bruno's
Garret. The exhibition opens on Thursday, the 17th, and will
last until the 25th of February. The poetry readings and
Monday evening lectures have to be interrupted on account of
the fire until March the 5th. Upon this day, the necessary
restoration work will have been finished and Bruno's Garret
will welcome everybody that wishes to attend its house
Little Thimble Theatre
MADIGAN, who was heard last week in her recitation to music of
Victor Sardou's "Leah the Forsaken," has remarkable talent to
interpret with her strong resonant voice, the words of the
author. Music and spoken word seem to grow to a unit which
does not fail to act upon our senses. Our eyes and our ears
are similarly attracted. Miss Madigan, who just completed her
eleventh year, will continue her dramatic studies.
Thursday, Friday and Saturday of this week the program will
include a selection of songs by Miss Sara S. Broughton, known
as a church singer and who aspires to enter upon a concert
career. Her program includes: The Star, by Rogers; Where my
Caravan Has Rested, by Lohr; The Years at the Spring, by
Miss Lila Van Kirk will give three of her Italian illustrated
travelogues, "Two Weeks in Rome," "A Walk Through the Streets
of Florence," and "Naples, Pompeii, Vesuvius, Venice (by
moonlight) and Italian Lakes." This series is arranged as a
trip through Italy, on this side of the ocean and Miss Van
Kirk has sought to make her individuality that of a purely
conversational tone of delivery, thereby tendering the
atmosphere of her historic subject.
CHURCH stands at the head of Wall Street. Facing East, it
represents God. At the foot is the East River oblivion. The
Stock Exchange is between, the Temple of Mammon; the, Custom
House is beside. It is the place of the law. We have here the
channel and its ports. In the daytime a human tide here ebbs
and flows. At certain seasons the flow is well defined; on the
eve of panic from Mammon to God, as the herd gathers before
the storm; in the panic the Street is in flood. Some are
pushed into oblivion, but the Street remains full — Curious
paradox. — In the time of plenty, the tide sets to the place
of the law. Man is mindful of its comforts in the hour of
fortune; Gold has its concomitants; noblesse oblige. In the
Temple of Mammon all is Babel. No tongue is of the Pentecost.
They cry aloud and dance to the music of their throats. Then
comes a hush. The place empties like a sigh. But after all is
said and done the trend is up and down; some to the
churchyard, some to the river. There is rest.
And old Trinity smiles down equally upon the mob and the dead.
They are alike, incidents.
G. E. M.
SHE came like a falling
Sudden, and swift, and
the heaven of heavens afar
On the wilderness of night.
came like a falling star,
Flashed by, and was no more;
the wilderness where lost lovers are
Is darker than before.
O. T. M.
people who never stop to trouble about the Truth, object to
have the Truth stop to trouble about them, especially when the
trouble about the Truth is: It never stops their troubles.
The man who needs a bracer, better brace up against the
A world menace: the unteachable self-taught.
published weekly by Charles Edison, and edited and written
by Guido Bruno, both at 58 Washington Square, New York City.
Subscription $2 a year.
Entered as second class matter at
the Post Office of New York, N. Y., October 14th, 1916. under
the Act of March 3d, 1879.