In heaven her consolation sought,
In Him who for the orphan cares,
The only happiness she knew
Her sweetest moments were when she
Would kneel beside her mother's grave
And pray to God most fervently.
And it was then that the white dove
Direct from heaven to her drew near,
Caressed her with its snowy wing,
Coo'd tenderly within her ear.
Driving her sorrows all away,
Until her heart with joy would swell,
And then the bird woxild gather up
The tears that from her eyelids fell,
And gently fluttering her wings,
Carry them up to paradise.
Whether her mother's spirit bore
These tears to God from out her eyes
Who knows? but after every prayer
This scene, repeated, strengthened her,
For further struggles with her fate
She stronger grew and readier.
But when she reached her sixteenth year
They wearied of her where she dwelt,
And on her coldly shut the door,
So by her mother's grave she knelt,
Dewed it with tears in farewell shed,
Then turning from her native place
She followed where her vision led.
Not far beyond the forest road
. There rose a castle grand and gray,
On either side the river flowed,
And further on a village lay.
432 POETS AND POETRY OF POLAND.
With two attandants at his side
Its lord was riding, pensive eyed,
Across the bridge. Though young, a trace
Of sadness lingered on his face.
Then slackening his horse's r-ein,
In silent thought he seemed to brood ;
Slow paced the steed with drooping mane,
As though he shared his master's mooi.
And thus, in melancholy-wise
He neared a grove that lay apart
And lifting up his downcast eyes,
Fear took possession of his heart.
For he beheld a stranger maid,
Who walked with folded hands and prayed,-
By white-robed angels circled round,
And in their midst, with heavenly mien,
One clad in robes of brightest sheen,
Her brow with starry halo crowned.
The youth gazed, wonderstruck, and saw
How from the maiden's lips, at close
Of every prayer, oh, sight of awe !
Came forth a beautiful red rose.
How with each Ave Maria said
Fell from her lips a lily white,
And these the angels gathered
And wove into a chaplet bright,
And offered it unto their queen,
Who placed it with a smile serene
Upon the orphan's bended head.
Then passed the vision from his eyes,
With fragrance left of paradise.
The young man fell upon his knees
Before the maiden then, as she,
O'ercome by fear, had turned to flee
Because that she was unaware
IGNATZ HOfiOWINSKI. 433
Of all these heavenly mysteries
That happened round her while at prayer.
" Oh, do not be alarmed, but stay,"
Cried the abashed and trembling youth.
" God's mercy sent you here this day
A consolation sweet, in truth.
Hear me while I recount to you
How two brief years ago it was,
Heaven took my parents hence; I, too,
Up to this hour have mourned, alas!
With tears that still mine eyes bedew.
So deeply was the burden laid
On me, my life began to fade.
But listen: last night in a dream
My parents came and said to me:
' Oh, why oppose God's will supreme
In mourning thus incessantly?
Know then that we are happier here
Than when we lingered on the earth,
That thou didst love us and revere?
God will reward thee; though the maid
That for thy wife He destineth
Is poor and but of humble birth.
His mother, unto whom she prayed,
Will stoop and crown her with a wreath.'
And I indeed have witnessed how,
Amid an angel band but now,
She placed the wreath upon thy brow."
Trembling the maiden looked at him,
While blushes dried each falling tear,
Then as from spheres of seraphim
Came down the snowy plumaged dove
To whisper words of peace and love
Into the orphan's listening ear.
434 POETS AND POETRY OF POLAND.
Then Josie raised the youth, who still
Kneeled waiting humbly at her feet,
And faltered in confusion sweet:
" God's will be done if 'tis His will."
And long before the day was done
Beside the little chapel's shrine
The youth and maid together stood.
God joined forevermore as one.
And Josie to her life's decline
Relieved the wants of orphanhood.
JOSEPH IGNATZ KRASZEWSKI, born in 1812, is one of
the most prolific not only of Polish litterateurs, but of
the world. Only Lopez de Vega and Pere Dumas
could approach him in literary fertility. Incredible as
it may appear, over two hundred volumes of his
miscellaneous writings have been published; and still
more astonishing, that all of them are works of great
erudition and merit. The most discriminating critic
could hardly designate which is the best.
But that is not all: Kraszewski, who at the present
writing of this biographical sketch resides in Dresden,
Saxony, is a man of rare qualities of the heart and
mind, respected and honored not only by his own
countrymen, but also by all the literary men of the
world who are personally acquainted with him. His
literary creations always aimed to correct the heart and
the spirit of his nationality, and to lift up the heart
and the spirit of humanity at large. It is for these
reasons that the heart of the Polish Nation justly
swells with pride that Kraszewski is a Pole, and the
son of the same country as themselves.
Kraszewski labored in almost all branches of litera-
ture, and whatever he wrote he wrote upon the founda-
tion of truth; truly it may be said that the famous
Amalthea was always standing by his side with her
" Horn of Plenty," and poured out the poet's thoughts
gracefully and with a generous profusion.
The most extraordinary phenomenon in the history
of Kraszewski's life is the ovation which he received
year before last (1879) in the city of Cracow, on the
438 POETS AND POETRY OF POLAND.
fiftieth anniversary of his great literary labors. Hun-
dreds, and we may say thousands, without distinction
of creeds, parties, or opinions, turned out to greet this
distinguished veteran of literature, and this great na-
tional demonstration lasted for several days. Two
monarchs honored him with tokens of their esteem.
Kraszewski received these congratulations with mod-
esty becoming a great man, representing a great peo-
ple. This great celebration was also participated in
by many distinguished representatives of other nation-
alities; and the interesting fact will go down into his-
tory that the pulse of the Polish national heart beat
in the year 1879 with as much patriotic fervor as in the
days of Poland's glory or her misfortunes!
We may add here that the memorable event was
also celebrated by the Poles almost all over the United
States of America. In the city of Chicago especially
the celebration, under the auspices of two Polish socie-
ties "Gmina Polska in Chicago," and "Kosciuszko,"
was of large proportions and attended by hundreds;
not only Poles, but other nationalities.
A handsome memorial was gotten up, with an appro-
priate inscription, and sent to Dresden to the veteran
of Polish literature by his admiring and grateful coun-
The following are some of his works: "Miscella-
neous Poems," Wilno, 1838; " Anafielas," or songs
from the legends of Lithuania; " Witolorauda,"
"Hymns of Pain," "Metamorphoses," "Wonders
and Failings of the Age," " Lancers and Bondurak,"
"Four Weddings of Charles," "laryna," etc. etc.
The works of Kraszewski will prove a precious mine
to a future historian.
AH ! MY DEAR ANGEL !
" O moj Aniele! p6jdiem poiaiczeni."
WRITTEN IN YOUNGEK DAYS
Ah! my dear angel! united we'll be
Through the world, through life, through pleasure and
As the green vine that clings 'round the oak tree,
And fondles the bark with its tender leaf,
Thus will we ever together be!
As two clear tear-drops that rest in the eye,
As two deep sighs from the heart that is true
Together we'll journey till death draws nigh,
You ever with me, T ever with you,
In this world, in heaven, in the grave!
Ah! my dear angel! together we'll go
Through this cold world and through life's changful role,
Through storms of autumn, though whirlwinds may blow,
Ever together thou friend of my soul
Like unto two crystal tears !
What has the earth, sea! more beautiful than thou?
Where in creation dwells a majesty like thine?
Nought can destroy in thee the charm to which we bow;
In sight of earth and heaven thy grandeur is divine.
Thy boundlessness evolved from the creating will
Forecasts eternity, and says to pride " Be still ! "
Whether the sun looks down into thy billowy green
Or sinks its burning rays in thy translucent breast,
Suffusing thee in flames of gold and crimson sheen,
Or with the opal glow wherein the dove is dressed:
Whether dark night comes on or Menes pale draws near
To leave upon thy waste his traces silver clear,
440 POETS AND POETRY OF POLAND.
Still art thou beautiful still wonderfully grand !
The human eye that rests on thy immensity
Draws from thy depth high thoughts, to which our souls
More precious than the pearls and corals hid in thee;
And to thy witching sounds the ear does list amazed:
In them we seem to hear how God, the Lord, is praised.
Thy silence is sublime, and terrible thy roar
When thy blue field puts on its somber-green attire;
In storms thou hurlest thee against the rugged shore,
Throwing thy snow-white foam from out thy breast in ire;
Thou fill'st man's heart with dread lest in thy wild unrest
Thou shouldst engulf the earth within thy angry breast!
BIORO DRAWER AND THE HEAD.
A certain man renowned
For learning most profound
His bioro drawer showed to me.
" Behold these papers ! what a store
I have for thirty years or more
Been putting in this drawer," said he.
" My worthy friend, I tell you true
They're full of wisdom learning too."
But one who notice chanced to take
Of all their talk said: "What a pity"
(I don't know as it was witty
For him such a remark to make).
That which we ever look to find
Wisdom and learning in the head
Were by this gentleman instead
To his bioro drawer consigned.
CHARLES SIENKIEWICZ was born in Ukraine, and re-
ceived his education in the city of Human; then lie
went to Winnica, and finally finished his studies at
Krzemieniec. Very soon after he went in company of
Zamoyskis and traveled for several years in Europe,
but the most of his time was passed in England and
Scotland. After his return to his native land he super-
intended the extensive library of Prince Adam Czarto-
ryiski, at Pulawy. After the downfall of the revolu-
tion of 1830 he joined the emigration, and leaving
Poland, settled in Paris, where he was very diligently
engaged in the cause of the Polish emigration. Through
his own and Niemcewicz's influence there was estab-
lished, in 1838, in Paris, a Polish historical depart-
ment, which finally was stocked with a library of
30,000 volumes. In his younger days he gave him-
self up to poetry. His translation of Walter Scott's
" Lady of the Lake" ranks among the best translations
of English poetry into the Polish language. While the
chief superintendent of the library of PuJawy he em-
ployed himself with great self-denial in completing a
catalogue of the duplicates of the library. Then he
wrote an addition to Bentkowski's " Polish Literature."
Besides these he wrote on political economy and "An
Account of the Present State of Greece," which he fin-
ished in 1830. While in Paris he gave himself up
entirely to historical labors, and it was through his ex-
ertions that "The Chronicles of the Polish Emigration "
were published, from 1835 to 1838, in eight volumes,
three of which were exclusively his own labor. He
442 POETS AND POETRY OF POLAND.
then wrote "Treasures of the Polish History," in four
volumes 1839-42 with valuable additional mate-
rials to the history of Poland, which he elucidated in a
very learned and interesting manner. In 1854 he pub-
lished a work in the French language, "Documents
Historiques relatif a la Russie et la Pologne," in three
volumes. Just before his death he finished a manual
of Polish history for the high Polish school at Batig-
nolle. He died in Paris in 1860. After his death his
writings and literary labors were published, in 1864.
" Oto clziS d/.ieri krwi i chwaly."
Poles, awake! 'tis your day of glory.
Arise, oh arise in your might!
You will live in deathless story
Should you fall in your country's fight.
Where the rainbow in heaven is beaming
As he basks in July's brilliant ray,
Your white eagle's eye is gleaming
As he calls to the glorious fray.
On, true Poles! See, the foe is before us!
Sound the charge and the day is won !
With our sacred banner spread o'er us,
On for freedom and Poland, on!
The fierce Cossack has mounted his legions,
Our young freedom to crush in its birth;
But soon o'er his mountain regions
We'll trample his hopes in the earth.
Barbarians! Your visions of booty,
Though ye triumph, will soon be fled;
For the Pole knows a soldier's duty,
And will leave you nought but the dead.
On, true Potes! etc.
Kosciuszko, arise! and aid us
To root from the soil our foe,
Who has promised, deceived, betrayed us,
Steeping Praga in carnage and woe.
Let the blood of the murderer flowing
Enrich each grassy tomb
Where our flow'rets of victory growing
Shall more gayly, more gorgeously bloom.
On, true Poles! etc.
Parent land, thy children returning
This day would deserve thy smile,
Thy altars with wreaths adorning
From the Kremlin, the Tyber, the Nile.
Years have passed since each exiled brother
His native land has press'd;
Should he fall there now, oh mother!
On thy bosom he will sweetly rest.
On, ti'ue Poles! etc.
Gallant Poles, to the battle rally,
To humble the tyrant czar !
And in each heroic sally
Bear the ring in the front of the war;
Let that gift of our Poland's daughters
Be the charm to freeze to foe,
While gemmed in an hundred slaughters
Our symbol of victory will glow.
On, true Poles! etc.
444 POETS AND POETRY OF POLAND.
ye French ! what bloody arena
Did the Poles shun in fighting for you?
Was it Wagram, Marengo, or Jena,
Dresden, Leipzig, or Waterloo?
When the woild had betrayed to enslave you
Did the Pole yield to the coward's fears?
brethren! our life-blood we gave you;
In return you give us but tears.
On, true Poles! See, the foe is before us!
Sound the charge and the day is won!
With our sacred banner spread o'er us,
On for freedom and Poland, on!
ROMAN ZMORSKI, besides possessing great poetic
talents, should also be credited with another inesti-
mable quality, his great ability as a translator. But
that is not all. In rendering translations Ii6 preserved
the spirit and colors of the originals, a fact acknowl-
edged by all who read his renditions from the Serbian
into the Polish, and who well understood both lan-
guages. He was so great an adept in the art of trans-
lation that he invariably preserved even the original
form. Everything he attempted in literature he in-
fused into it a peculiar literary freshness, and this rare
virtue especially pervades his translation of the le-
gends taken from the literary treasury of peoples still
young and unripe in civilization, but strong in the
faith of heaven and the love of earth.
The following translations of Serbian poetry by
Zmorski may be mentioned: 1. "National Songs of
Serbia," published at Warsaw, 1853; 2. "The Castle
of Seven Chiefs, "founded on tradition, Lemberg, 1857,
and a second edition, illustrated by Gerson, Warsaw,
1860; 3. "The Royal Prince, Marko, " Warsaw, 1859;
4. " Lazarica," Warsaw, 1860. Mr. Zmorski, having
lived in Serbia and knowing the people and their
tongue well, could appreciate the beauty and value
of their many songs, and we acknowledge that he has
rendered a great service to Polish literature by his
conscientious translations, for it has been of great
importance to the Polish nation to obtain a correct
knowledge of these valiant people, which in our times
have been called into a new life.
446 POETS AND POKTRY OF POLAND.
The translator, however, for better and more faith-
ful rendition, used the blank verse, and if in one re-
spect he deprived them of exterior ornaments, on the
other hand he preserved strictly the original spirit
and the true meaning. He is also the author of
"Leslaw," a fantastic tale.
Mr. Zmorski was quite a distinguished Polish poet;
was born at Warsaw in 1824, and died in 1866.
SIGHS FROM A FAB-OFF LAND.
In a strange and cold land,
Strangers on ev'ry hand,
Sadly, wearily, time passes o'er.
Oh! billows pearly white,
Vistula's sands gold bright,
When, oh when shall I see you once more?
The weary soul must stay,
Though fain would fly away,
For all the time her dreams are of thee;
Narev's and Buh's* shores afar
My mem'ry's flowers are
Remembrance of happy days. Ah, me!
As with Masovia's f song,
So sad, so wild, and strong,
The old woods roar in my ears alway;
In cemeteries' shade,
From graves where sires are laid,
I listen to what their spirits say.
Dear brethren, kindred band!
Woods of my fatherland!
* Narev and Buh, names of two rivers.
t Masovia, a province of Poland
Ye plains! and our godly world and best!
I with my thoughts and heart
Am ne'er from you apart,
Your own spirit breathes within my breast.
My strength and sword ye ai-e,
My chief and brightest star
Midst storms, heat and cold and wandering;
When grief has passed away,
God at some future day
A resurrection hymn will let us sing.
IN PEASANT'S CLOTHES.
Like peasants, brethren, let us dress,
If you wish the people to lead;
Our love alone does not express
Enough. To dress like them we need
Minds o'er whom folly holds the sway,
Who feel the ridicule of fops,
Let them speak in a foreign way
And put on clothes from foreign shops.
Whom fashion vain a god has made,
And whose contempt the people know,
Let him in foreign clothes arrayed,
Wear the apparel of the foe.
Where Kosqiuszko's steps have led
Let's follow in the people's dress;
Let spirit and appearance wed
The Polish nation, bind and bless.
Like peasants, brethren, let us dress,
If you wish the people to lead;
Our love alone does not express
Enough. To dress like them we need.
448 POETS AND POETRY OF POLAND.
NARCISSA ZMICHOWSKA (Gabryela), a sweet and
charming poetess, was born at Warsaw on the 4th of
March, 1819. A sepulchral mound raised to her
memory only two years ago will be a place of pilgrim-
age to all who appreciate genius and unblemished char-
acter. Three days after she was born her mother died,
and Narcissa was left an orphan. This orphanage has
left traces of deep sadness on her; she was not, how-
ever, left without a good guardianship; her aunt took
her and brought her up with the greatest care. Under
her eyes the young flower of a maiden began to bloom
and develop most charmingly. She very early evinced
extraordinary capabilities for learning and quickness of
comprehension, and gave great promise of future dis-
tinction. Besides that, another great and exalted feel-
ing began to unfold itself in Gabryela, and that was
the patriotic love of her country. One of her brothers,
who was concerned in the revolution of 1831, was com-
pelled to emigrate into foreign lands, and for him, the
unfortunate wanderer, she felt the greatest affection.
She received her initiatory education at the home of
her aunt, and then she was sent to the Young Ladies'
Pension, under the supervision of Madam Wilczynska,
the best institution of the kind in Warsaw. Under the
guidance of this distinguished preceptress, fitting her-
self for a teacher, Narcissa finished her course with
eminent success. She was then employed in the
family of Count Zamoyski as a private teacher, and
finally settled in Paris. Here for the first time she
tried her hand at composition and wrote a few pictures
of her travels " Gibraltar," and "The Ruins of
Luxor," which were published in the "Warsaw Li-
brary "'in 1842. The third piece, entitled "The
Storm,*' was published in the periodical called "The
Star." These poetic pictures attracted great attention;
the scenes, the word-painting, the richness of fancy
and loftiness of thought, were greatly admired by all,
litterateurs not excepted. Jachowicz, the poet, was
enchanted with these novel effusions, and while read-
ing the effusion "The Storm " predicted great fame to
the young authoress.
The residing in Paris had a great influence in un-
folding Narcissa's genius. Paris 'in those days was
the place of abode of the most distinguished Polish
poets. Mickiewicz, Slowacki, Krasinski, and Goszczyn-
ski were still living, and Narcissa became acquainted
with them all. Bohdan Zaleski, who is still living,
was also among them. Her poem "Happiness of the
Poet" was published in " The Violet," where the in-
fluence of Mickiewicz is plainly seen; but aside from
that, we here discover in the sound of this young
poetess' lute a combination of the manly power of
expression with woman's tenderness of feeling.
The originality of her poetic talent is still more
strongly depicted in her later compositions. A copious
collection in prose and verse was published at Posen
in 1845, entitled " Idle Hours of Gabryela." They
contain larger poems, fugitive pieces, and also tales in
prose. The critics welcomed their appearance unani-
mously. They justly saw ip Gabryela a new shining
star in the heavens of native literature.
The poetess, who carried in her heart the ideal of
justice and love, oftentimes touches in her creations
the strings of social degradation, misery, and egotism.
450 POETS AND POETRY OF POLAND.
Whenever she mentions these subjects her heart swells
with feeling either of contempt, pity, misery, or unrest.
A great knowledge of human nature characterizes all
her writings, especially her tales written in prose.
Indeed, there are but few authors who possess a deeper
feeling and a more extensive store of psychological
knowledge. Returning to the enumeration of her works
we can mention the following: "The Curse,' 1 '"The
Problem," "Uncertainty," "Certainty," "Weary,"
"Reality," "The Kind Maiden," " Longing," " En-
chantment," "Impossibility," "The Gift," " What I
Would Give You," "For the Loved Ones," "The
Orphan," and "To My Little Girls," which we give
Although the ideal principally illumed her path,
yet with her exalted thoughts and quick comprehension
of the great problems of humanity, she united every-
day practical knowledge of life; her life was a unity of
all these, and hence the reason why it was so harmo-
nious and beautiful. At this time there was no lack of
distinguished women in Poland; yet Zmichowska did
not occupy a second place among them for reasons
There is considerable similarity between Gabryela
and George Sand ; there is a striking resemblance be-
tween the richness of their language and loftiness of
their style; they were alike in the deep knowledge of
the human heart; there was a similarity in their noble
thoughts and sympathies. If there was any difference
between these two genial women it falls to the credit
of Gabryela. She was a true Polish woman, and that
preserved her from unbelief and the fanciful attempts
as to the emancipation of women. Religion and the
old Polish traditions, which put women on the highest
possible plane, kept her mind away from traveling the
pathless track. It cannot be denied that her mind had
somewhat traveled through the philosophical causeways
of doubt as other reflecting and independent minds do
travel ; but she returned to the path of faith and affir-
mation, led by the above mentioned Polish traditions.
Much of her time was occupied in the education of
young ladies, and that gained for her a great reputa-
tion as one of the most accomplished and successful
teachers in the country. Besides the invaluable influ-
ence she exerted by her writings and educating young
ladies, she had still greater influence upon society by
fostering and keeping up the patriotic spirit. She was
kind, aifable, and winning in her manner, and knew
how to address the young generation in her familiar
conversations with them. In fact, she was sure to im-
prove the hearts and minds of all those who came in
contact with her.
She lived alternately in the provinces and in War-
saw, and after the year 1863 she went to France to
attend the funeral of a beloved brother, who died there