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May 20, 1923 - Image 1

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Rir#iTgn 4&titj
SUNDAY MAGAZINE
ANN ARBOR, MICHIGAN, SUNDAY, MAY 20, 1923
An AuaRevoir to Robert Frost
"Selected Poems" and a Miscellany
Robert Frost has several times JASON COWLES This is the sort of effect that Frost has
been accused by various learned Grit- tried to produce ever since he first
ice of hibernating in a fresh-water formed a Style-theory of his own; he
university where he had to talk tc sto- calls it "vocal imagination." It is the
dents all day. and had no time for quality that makes Ruth Draper's da-
work. In the "Critical Fable'" by an matic impersonations so effective-the
aoneymous author, which was pub- ability to conceive not only words, but
lished last year, ir. Frost as" criti- also the tones and gestures and ac-
c.ed for giving his lime to a utiver- tions that should properly accompany
sity at all.t hem. The same effect can be produc-
The author of the "Critical Fa1il" ed without the use of colloquialisms;
is thought by ir. Frost to be Asmy \ Mr. Frost sometimes seems to be try-
Lowell. He visited her shortly after \ ing to recapture the tones of his own
the little pamphlet was published, and voice, just as in the poem above,
by a series of craftily planned qut - , where he tries to recapture those of
tions and remarks, he satisfied him- the farm hand. In "lendingg Wal,"
self that she had written it. Ie told for instance, one can almost hear Mr.
her, for instance, that he was goine Frost's own deep, calm voice sayin-g;
to tell Iis friends that Gamraliel Brad-
ford was the Something there is that doesn't love
fodwstenktnowen author-bust 4 r all
Amy Lowell immediately haltenged
this; she didn't think Bradfoid was Th"t sends the frozen ground-swell
clever enough to have done it. Mr. under it,
Frost then misquoted a few lines in And spills the upper boulders in the
the middle of the Fable, which is allAnd sun;
in verse, and she promptly corrected makes gaps even two can pass
him abreast.
Mr. Frost explains Amy Lowell's This quality of vocal tone is what
tyeory that he wasn't getting anything makes Robert Frost's poetry unique.
done out here, on the basis of her ovn t Nobody else has ever achieved it, and
work-habits. She does all her work lit is doubtful if anybody else ever will,
at night, starting at about eleven o'- Fromlif e- 92./ He said in an interview last fall that
clock and working till six in the morn- me iSs the only artists worth patronizing.(he
Ing. was talking about university patron-
Mr. Frost assuredly has done a great age) were the "ones who would do
deal besides write poetry, If he has iwhat they are doing, whether they
written any. He has been host to all were paid for it or not," and then he
the literati who have come here durs /compared the government artist-pen-
ing his stay; he has been a sort o sion system of European countries to
guardian angel to "Whimsies"; he has /the new American plan of paying art-
attended countless teas and sorority fists to live at universities. "The uni-
dinners; and he has always been at versities have recently conceived the
home to anyonq who cared to drop in D),'ruznisg ,ry Jtes I/w.e Jr. ides of patronizing the arts, not so
for a t lk. Amy Lowell ha1 gror-mds much to give the artist a year free of
enough for supposing that fir. 'rost1 ROBERT FROST worry, and not so much to give the
couldn't get anything done. though it was probably not intended: As I sat mospping hayseed from mty undergraduates the benefit, if there is
Notwithstanding the "Critical i"z- t, i c1>'aything of the asrt. nee.:, any, of his presence, as to show the
bWe," he seems to have gotten some- The book also mphasize r t.' con- iAnd sort of waiting to be asked ivorld that the universities of this
thing done anyhow. lie has just had 1tsrstional iquality of styl ithteMr. about it, 'country are consciously patronizing
a book published by Henry lolt -an Frost has finally mastered. The only One of the boys sings out, 'Where's the arts."
American edition of the English 'di- way to describe it at all is not to de- the old 'an' Mr. Frost said that he had had no
lion of his selected poems. This is scribe it, but to quote it. here is a 'I left him in the barn under the duties. Ie taught no classes, had no
not an original work; its contents piece front "The Code": hay. formal "afternoons at home," gave no
were chosen from Frost's other books I cleaned the rack and drove out to If ye want him, ye can go and dig lectures, no public readings. But he
-"A Boy's Will," "Mountain Interval," cool oL. him out.'" has exerted a profound inflence on
and "North of Boston" But it stot student life and thought-seemingly
have taken time to prepare for publi- _by his mere presence. The people
cation-what with selecting the po- with whom he came in contact dur-
ems, reading the proof, and the usual 1 ing his stay here have been affected
delays, it must be counted in this analy- iIsomewat by that contact-but some-
sis of Mr. Frost's tinle. ! H ~rjsq u e thing can also be said about his in-
What will probably impress Amy fluence on the great mass of the stu-
Lowell more, though, is the new vsl- dent body. I'daresay that most of the
ume Mr. Frost plans to publish in the CARL GEHRINQ students on the camipus never met Mr.
fall-"New Hampshire," containing Frost-but there is something in hav-
material which has previoucly appea'- One of the most interesting and this Bohemian master should be kept ing a friend nudge you and say, "See
ed in magazines, and some that 1t1', popular forms of musical expression alive in the minds of the people by that guy? That's Robert Frost," that
never been printed. So ins time here is the Humoresque. Its representa- this poetic trifle, a lile creature, per- leaves an i-mpression, however light.
has not been totally unpcoductiee a t ties strike the .key note of simplicity haps an accidental off-shoot, of his It is not as the stimulus or .foster-
all. itselC At once delightful in this re- fancy Yet, such is the ease. To the ing nurse of whatever student literary
"Selected Poems" seems to con a n s ect and likely to be infused with the uoreinitiated in terms musical Dvorak renaissance that may have been sice
all of the best and most appealing of whimsical, they address a large .fol- is revered for his remarkable worke h arrival here that like to remem-
Mr. Frost's work. He has appareshly lowing of mutic lovers, the serious and n the field of syphony, opera, ander Robert Frost. I prefer to think
tried to include in this volume enough more pretentious works fail to reach. exalted chamber music. He accorded of him as a big man with gray hair
of his poetry to give a fairly accurate In a recent conversation with a music our native Americans most friendly and blue eyes and a deep laggjpg
idea of his own range-always with critic, he deplored the existence of so and opportune aid in a frank endeavor voice. "How d'ye do? Won't you
an eye, of course, to the English taste much music utterly unworthwhile. His to get started on this continent a no- come in? Have a chair...:." Thep
for which it was originally prepared. standards would only allow of the tional school of musical composition. he'd preside unofficially at the "Whis-
The poems range from the half huts- masterpieces of Wagner, Franck, Toward this end he informed us that sies" receptions of visiting atiats;
morous "A Hundred Collars" to the Brahms, and of the other musical gi- our folk song, so basic in the music and while everyone was waiting tosee
poignant "Death of the Hired Man." ;ants. Personally, I find such an atti- of any country, must needs be drawn 'what was going to hppen be would
The first section in the book Con- tue foolish as well as arrogant. There from the lore of our American negroes sink down in his chair and- nipple
tains three short poems-all rather is a time and place for everything and ani possibly the Indians, In support through the "Literary Digest," and
whimsical treatments of domestic life I shall continue to enjoy my Chopin of his contention he composed his Fifth read some of the stuff from the poetry
on a farm. The first one is rather a E fiat Nocturne played in the quiet of SnSymphony in E minor dedicated "to iptage, and make disarmingly naive re-
nice thing to start a book with--"The the evening following upon a strenu- T'e New World," and his famous marks about-the-visiting celebrity... .

Pasture." The first stanza follows: ous day, as I could never appreciate'S
symphonicString Quartette in F major known He was best of all at home in his
I'm going out to clean the pastures, r as "Th 'a+ri.icanr." empiloying theseown house. There he is like the mar
spring; doubt, at that particular time. As mehtdie t.rub' ut. Ard tis is the in his poem, "A Time to Talk":
I'll only stop to rake the leaves away chamber music for the drawing room, man w se. titl Ih1mr.'tue is play-. When a friend calls to me from
(And wai to watch the water clear, so the symphony for Orchetsra Hall! ed hr Krisler ou the Ttrmrson's the road
I may): Outstanding among the countless hlono'a'h 'b t entertain their And slows his horse to a meaning
I shan't be gone long.-You come humoresques included in the realm of neigi'h , tie mits, of a iunday. walk
too. musical literature is the one so well lafternct. I don't stand still and look around
It scents a sort of an invitation to go Rnown by Antonin Dvorak. It appears Origi Is' for the piano, this worn:! On all the hills I haven't hoed,
on and read the rest of the bhok, al- paradoxical enough that the iame of 'C on'nusrn Ptage Five) (Cottinuied on Page Seven)

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