The place of honor in the Monthly is justly given to Mr. Rogers's "The Jester," a story or little drama in verse of a jester who would be more than a fool. Mr. Rogers is steadily gaining skill in expression; many of his lines have a swing which one remembers, such as this: "A ruined chateau, a terrace, a garden, a summer breeze."
Mr. Lewis writes pleasantly of "The Call of the River." He evidently feels the call himself and sometimes but not always conveys it to his reader.
Mr. Mayo's story of "Robinson's Folly," illustrated the old text that he who makes money and nothing else is not a gainer. The story is well told.
The verse of the number aside from "The Jester" certainly belies the title of the latter. It is all very serious, not to say solemn. In "The Modern World," Mr. Wheelock dreams of a day "when Socialism, like another Christ, shall shatter the old world," and in an "Epilogue" his spirit reels, "Drunk with a defiance stronger than the tyranny of death!" In Mr. Miller's "The Aged Poet's Soliloquy" a bard of seventy-five long years grieves that men shall never know the richer veins of gold that lay below the inmost marvel of his poet's heart. Mr. Dickerman in "Romance" is not quite so worldworn as the others, but even for him "The Rose Perhaps grows sweeter in these garden walks, Because of roses that bloomed long ago."
There are good lines in all these pieces, but the combination would have been greatly helped by at least one poem in lighter vein, more in consonance with the spirit of youth.
The other articles are a book-notice on Mr. Ficke's "The Earth Lassion," and an editorial on "The Professor and the Undergraduate." Perhaps the presence of so much solemn verse has put the editor in a pessimistic mood for he bewails the ignorance and stupidity which estrauges student and professor from helpful human relations. I have personally seen so little of this estrangement that I cannot write on it intelligently, if it does exist. One of the best things I have gained from my teaching has been the friendship of students; one living among eternal youth--for undergraduates represent eternal youth--must necessarily himself stay young. There are few professors whom I have known who do not enter deeply into the lives of some students on the purely personal side, and many have possessed real genius in friendship. I wonder how often the student who fails to find such friendship here has but himself to blame