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first document compromising to the tion, nay, with direct sabotage, from German Government which he se- the Right and the Left, and with lected for publication was a letter scant understanding among the Wesfrom the Kaiser to the Czar, com tern Allies. His attempt broke down. plaining of the asylum accorded to Then came Trotski's day and burrevolutionaries in Great Britain, and den. With him and the Bolsheviki proposing joint representations on the strangest factor has entered the that subject. Trotski thus reminded war-a belligerent power to whom his comrades of the time when Prus- war on national lines has neither sia had offered itself as an assistant sense nor meaning. The only war to their hangmen, and when it was which they understand is between Prince Bülow, not the Morning Post, classes, and that war knows no who sneered at “Silberfarb” and frontier. It is not peace which they “Mandelstamm”! Not even our most carry to the world but strife; they God-forsaken official underlings with are militants, but in a different dia flair for the psychological moment, mension. Could Trotski raise, arm, when petty chicanery creates the and officer a sufficiently big army he maximum of irritation, can alto. would menace, not the Central Powgether wipe out the memory of those ers alone but all the bourgeois govother days.
ernments of the world; though he The pre-revolutionary opposition would probably try to avoid fighting in the Duma was political; the revo their armies in battles which indislution which broke out in the streets, criminately sacrifice bourgeois and social. The Cadets aimed at consti. proletarians. He naturally demands tutional reform and at a more efficient complete self-determination for all prosecution of the war. They could nationalities throughout the worldnot give the sign for active revolt lest which implies, among other things, it should interfere with the conduct the end of German imperialism, the of the war. The revolution was made complete disruption of the Habsburg by men to whom the war was not the Monarchy and of the Turkish Emfirst concern. The Cadets joined it pire (one has to come to England to after the day was won. The peas. find socialists or “democrats” who antry and army cried out for land from sheer controversial perversity and peace. The Cadets desired to go become champions of such dynastic on with the war till victory was won creations!). But to Trotski self-deand to check social revolution. These termination is merely one aspect were two irreconcilable programmes. of a much wider problem. “Why Kerenski tried to reconcile them. should people object so strongly to He wanted all classes to unite, to the dominion of one nation over anoffer.sacrifices and to have confidence other," the Bolshevik would say, in each other. The masses were to "and yet within the same nation adsubmit to the leadership and dis- mit that one man should be born in cipline of the educated bourgeoisie, economic subjection to another man? suffer yet further in a war of which Why talk about 'submerged nationthey hardly understood the meaning, alities' and be silent about suband trust to the upper classes not to merged classes?” To the Bolsheviks use in future their regained power the different ideas of possession and for preventing the social revolution. dominion are but parts of one orThe upper classes were to work cheer- ganic whole of which the vital nerve fully, viewing with equanimity the may be destroyed by a violent blow, certain doom in store for them on but which it is almost impossible the conclusion of peace. Kerenski's to transform by degrees. Evolution endeavours were met with opposi. comes after revolution to eliminate the moribund forms by a gradual unfold, Trotski has to face the Teu. process. That is why systems sur tonic power. It would seem that he vive revolutions and yet cannot be is at their mercy. And yet a dark killed apart from revolution. As fear haunts his opponents. There is Grillparzer put it in 1848, referring the suffering and despair of their to the constitutional problem raised own peoples, their craving for peace, by the French Revolution:
their rage, which, hitherto silent, may "Das ist der Zeiten bittere Not
any moment burst out in a desperate
cry. They, too, have heard the Der Widerspruch der schwer zu heben,
watchword about the rule of the Dass die Monarchie wohl tot,
downtrodden” and “the turn of the Aber die Monarchen leben.”
wheel.” It is to them that Trotski Most of Trotski's ideas are incom- speaks over the heads of their rulers. prehensible to the illiterate masses What do the starving German masses in the armies and peasantry of Rus- care for dominion over other races ? sia which have raised him to power. Has not enough blood been shed; They want peace because they are are the maimed and crippled too few tired of fighting, not because they in number? Trotski speaks sincerely hold any particular views on inter about peace. Russia sets all her na. national relations. They desire to tions free. She threatens nobody. expropriate the rich without any If peace negotiations break down, will clear idea of the condition which is anyone believe that it was through to supplant the order they destroy. Russia's fault? German and Austrian The immense, almost inconceivable, statesmen wriggle, they maneuvre suffering inflicted on the Russian for positions; they make the most peasant-soldier during the first three amazing professions of principle and years of the war by the criminal cal. contradict them in the same breath, lousness and corruption of the ancien they try to set themselves right in the régime has resulted in a psychologi. eyes of their peoples. Trotski uncal catastrophe-a disappearance of masks their game and analyses aloud military and social discipline un each move they make. The scene equalled in history, and a collapse of is almost grotesque. As Dr. Harold routine and tradition, the framework Williams put it in one of his Petroof everyday life. The intellectual grad despatches, the Germans “are revolutionaries sail in the storm and in the position of the mediaval their sails rise over the waves, in ap- knight, playing a weird game of chess pearance a triumphant sign of the with supernatural powers.” storm itself. Yet they have no real If the war continues, what can the control over the blind elemental German Government do? Can it forces which cannot be disciplined, risk ordering its armies across the least of all by the revolutionaries undefended Russian front? Will themselves. For if Trotski tried to they obey? Will they attack the coerce them and succeeded in that country which was the first to offer attempt—which in reality is impos- peace? Perhaps. But if the Ger. sible-he would break the very spirit mans get to Russia-again, what can and force of the revolution. He is they do? They cannot coerce Rusnot the man for such work.
sia. Revolutionary Russia is already Without an army at his command, a nightmare to them, and even from with a country plunged in anarchy their own country Germany's rulers and demanding peace, with masses cannot eliminate any more the forces only very dimly comprehending the and ideas which the war has set in meaning of the events which now motion.
BY JOHN GOULD FLETCHER
THIS is the Earth.
Brown clogged and dull,
Ages ago tides rose against it,
Ages ago men settled on it,
In the autumn evening,
Moaning and tossing,
BY JESSIE B. RITTENHOUSE
has given him not only the essential ARE poets dreamers and impractical but the picturesque approach to a folk, shirking the real business of subject. Indeed Mr. Kilmer's career life? No better answer could be in the decade in question has covmade to this query than the roll call ered not only journalism but so of those who have exchanged the varied a list of other pursuits that it singer's robes for the khaki. As far is not strange that adventure is in his as America is concerned, and con- blood and that he is ready to break sidering the brief time we have been a lance in still another field. Bookin the war, our roll of poet-soldiers seller, lexicographer, college teacher, is one to be reckoned with.
editor of a religious journal, critic, First in point of time, or surely interviewer, lecturer and poet,-he among the first, to spring to the has crowded so much into a brief ranks was Joyce Kilmer. Just be span that when to it he adds expeyond the draft age and with a little rience of the trenches, he will be able family, Uncle Sam not only had no to say with Byron, legal claim upon him but would
For I nad the share of 'ife which might probably have hesitated to take him
have filled a century from more immediate obligations; Before its fourth in time had passed me but this did not deter one whose
by. blood beat to a martial as well as The last thing before leaving for lyric strain, and not waiting to go France, Mr. Kilmer read the proofs through an officer's training, he cast of his new book of verse, Main Street, in his lot with the million others and Other Poems, issued as an auwhose distinction is in service alone. tumn publication. The collection is
Joining first the Seventh Regiment perhaps unduly weighed down with of New York, he remained in it for religious poems, which are not his part of the period of his training, best, although the sonnets are excelbut coming to suspect that the Sev. lent, but who can resist the whimsi. enth might, according to its tradi cal charm of A Blue Valentine or tion, be content to achieve its glory the human note of Roofs, or of elsewhere than on the field,-he suc The Snow-Man in the Yard? If ceeded in getting transferred to the childhood, domestic love, and relig. "Rainbow Division," with the Irish ion have inspired most of the poems Regiment, formerly famous as the in Mr. Kilmer's volume, that is not "Fighting Sixty-ninth.” This proved to say that they are less authena shrewd guess, as the Seventh is still tic, for where shall one find more at Spartanburg while the “Rainbow legitimate themes than childhood, Division," with its Irish contingent, domestic love and religion? We has been for some months in France. should like to pause by the way to
To follow Mr. Kilmer through the quote from the book, but it will lead exigencies of war will be possible us too far from our theme of “Poets only when we have the record, which Militant.” is eventually to come, of his expe Robert Haven Schauffler, of Scumriences “From Mineola to Flanders.” o'-the-Earth fame, was also among This will make excellent reading, as the earliest to volunteer. After geta decade of training in journalism ting his commission as Second Lieu
tenant, he was assigned to Camp Since I committed daily rhymes Meade, where he is now teaching in
As a civilian!) the Officers' Training School, but
In those, the typing times of peace, hoping soon to see more active serv As master of a Dome Diurnal, ice. Arthur Davison Ficke, who is I told the hated Hun to cease an officer in the Ordnance Depart.
The strife infernal. ment, has been more fortunate and
My wealth of verbiage was great; has already been several months in
Of bitter phrase I was no miser; France. He was recently sent back I screamed a daily hymn of hate to America on an important mission,
Against the Kaiser. but has returned to the front. Wil.
My pen was sharp, my lyre was loud, liam Rose Bénet has entered the Avi
I hated Bernstorff and Boy.Ed so! ation Corps, most fitting for a poet, I hated all the German crowd, and is now at San Antonio, learning And often said so. to mount upon other wings than
But now I am in closer touch; song. Charles Buxton Going, forsak I sense the spirit and the letter; ing the editorial desk, is giving his And now I know the Germans much,valuable knowledge of engineering to
Oh, so much,-better. the Government and is now a major
I understand their purpose nowin that department. J. E. Spingarn, I, who was given to flay and flout them whose volume, Creative Criticism, is How green I was! I don't see how the most valuable contribution to this I wrote about them. subject made in America in recent
Withdraw my rhyme of earlier date! years, has been in the war almost Erase each previous high endeavour! from the outset of our own participa Now that I know those birds, I hate tion in it, and has now the rank of a
’Em worse than ever. Major of Infantry. Curtis Hidden Page, another poet-critic, left his
II professorship at Dartmouth College
So much for the roll call of our to enter the service and is a Captain of Ordnance. Lastly, Franklin P.
own poets in camp or trench. In Adams, “F. P. A.," the genial, the
England that call takes on daily a inimitable, has gone to dispense a
tragic significance from the increaslittle of his cheer in the great army,
ing number who no longer respond. where he is a captain. When F. P. A.
Undoubtedly Francis Ledwidge was enters the trenches, the gloom will
the greatest loss to poetry since the give way, and mud and cold and rain
death of Rupert Brooke, and aside -which Service declares are more
from Brooke's incomparably beautiformidable than bullets—will be
ful sonnet, it is a question if Ledwidge forgotten. Weights and Measures,
had not the finer possibilities of the F. P. A.'s latest book, is a veritable
two. Ledwidge had been in the war lifesaver in these days of whelming Mesopotamia, and
finally in Flanders
from the outset, serving at Gallipoli, horror. It has more wholesome and
where he fell. Still in the middlespontaneous fun, more clever wit than any book in its field that has
twenties, his annals as poet and solappeared in many a moon. That the
dier were as picturesque as they were army is not going to quench this wit,
brief. The fairies must have directed
him to send to Lord Dunsany, though is shown by A Change of Heart, written in camp and published last not, we may imagine, without trepimonth in McClure's:
dation, those first poems of the
fields and hedges which made him In other and more peaceful times
beloved far beyond his native Ireland. (Eheu! the years seem thrice a million Through Dunsany he was introduced