8 April 1916
*Appreciation of a Child’s Love
(A child once climbed the writer’s knees and looking earnestly into his face uttered the very endearing words I love you! Trifling though the little incident may appear, it affected him very much. He became deeply moved, and his mind filled with serious thoughts which soon found expression in the following verses.)
How sweet those words from lips so fair;
A love, fond love, for you I bear:—
Such are the words to me confess’d
By one in infant robes and dress—
A child, a lovely child, is she
Who so declared her love for me.
A wretched heart, debased and vile,
Were mine, if sounds so free of guile
As summer’s zephyrs’ gentle sigh
When singing brooklets passing by—
Uttered from lips so chaste, so sweet
No fond responsive tones should meet.
But oh! dear child, what gift of mine
Would be return for love like thine?
Love pure as is the primal flow
Of mountain springs before they grow
To mighty rivers, when their forces
Sweep foul deposits in their course.
Like Autumn morn’s resplendent rays
Is that sweet light which round thee plays;
But like the clouds that float at noon
Across the sky, and dim so soon
Its glorious light, like such would prove
On thy fair life my sullied love.
Within this bosom’s surging main
There’s nought that I can feel or feign
For thy pure love a meet return—
As passions there so wildly burn
That its affection ne’er can be
Worthy the love of infancy.
And yet, sweet child, while I still hear
Thy loving words sound in my ear
I feel beyond expression blest
To have a heart so pure possess’d—
Still fail to find in what fit way
Thy fond first love I can repay.
I have nor gold nor prec’ous things.
No jewels rare, no costly rings
Can I buy for thee should I deem
Such gifts would bring thee fair esteem;
But no! the things that fleet or fade
As gifts for love were never made.
O! for the Muse’s power sublime
T’ immortalize thee and the time
Thy infant heart first warbled love
Sweet as the cooing of the dove; —
Did such great power to me belong
Thou would’st be e’er enshrined in song.
But these crude verses for thy sake
Are all my rustic muse can make;
Yet I should be well satisfied
Should they bring back with mem’ry’s tide
When thy sweet dreams of youth are o’er
Thoughts of the love thy heart first bore.
Or that when scanning each rough line
With solemn thought in life’s decline,
Thou would’st in pity think of him,
Who then may lie, cold, silent, dim
In the dark tomb, at rest for e’er,
And chant for him a heartfelt prayer!
*It is possible that some reader of the CHAMPION may have known the little heroine, to whom was given a printed copy of the poem; and perhaps would be kind enough to send her (as she went to the land of the Stars and Stripes), a copy of the paper in which it appears to-
If we take the introduction and postscript to the poem Appreciation of a Child's Love as true, it appears to have been written thirty years previously and to have been carefully kept in the meantime. The child went to the United States in the meantime. It would also appear that the child was not related to the poet.
The poem may have been written by one of the regular contributors of poetry to the newspapers whi preferred not to be identified. It seems to have been written by someone familiar with poetry who has a facility with rhythm and rhyme and is given to use "poetic" language, mentioning the muse and using thy, thee etc.
The mathematical problems in rhyme contained in the piece below appear to be very old. Internet searches reveal the first appearing in Memoirs of the Life and Services of Daniel Drake, M.D. by Edward Mansfield, first published in the United States in 1855.
The second is even older, appearing in Mr Wingate's Arithmetick : Containing A Plain And Familiar Method For Attaining The Knowledge And Practice Of Common Arithmetick, By Edmund Wingate Of Gray's Inn, Esq; first published in 1726. A groat was a coin worth four English pennies which was not minted after 1856.
I have been unable to find the third problem anywhere online.
8 April 1916
What is it?
The following was found on the table in the Courthouse after the meeting of the District Council on Saturday, which day, it will be remembered, was “All Fools”,−
If from a rule of three feet high
The shadow, five, is made,
What is the steeple’s height in yards
That is forty feet in shade?
. . . . . . . . . . . . .
If forty pence and forty groats
Bought fifty points of wine,
What is the cost of sixty quarts
In current sterling coin?
. . . . . . . . . . . . .
If five and three make ten
How much will six and eight make?
The above was initialled by M.B.