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warblers going to roost in the swaying gray banners of moss. From the stockade where the deerhounds are kept I hear a joyous clamor. They know very well that a hunt is afoot for to-morrow. From the stable yard come the voices of the Negroes, singing, shouting, and breaking into peals of infectious laughter. On the broad steps of home, in the dusk, I talk with many Negroes who have come to see me. Their types are interesting.

Gabriel, the hunter, wants to know how soon I can join him in the pursuit of a buck that he has been "saving" for me all year; and from under his coat he produces a marvelous otter hide as a Christmas present. This wily creature he has trapped with a skill that few even among the ranks of expert woodsmen possess. His knowledge of woodland affairs is in singular contrast to the ignorance of wild life of that great army of people, otherwise intelligent, who really wouldn't know the difference between a drumming grouse and a flying buttress.

Martha, one of the members of an elder race, and for half a century the very soul of fidelity to my family, comes to tell me how Germantown, the name of the village where she lives (it is on the borders of the plantation) has guarded its fair civic name during my absence. A strange Negro, it seems, had come to Germantown, a settlement of Negroes of the very best type. This newcomer had behaved in a very shifty manner; and, as a result, he had been strictly ostracized. Martha put the matter to me most graphically when she said: "He has no principles; so we 'hibit [prohibit] him, and we 'hibit his hog." It would not do merely to punish the man by a show of outraged decency, but he must be given to understand that, since he would not behave himself, his stock should not enjoy free range. Possibly there are several other communities in our country which would be uplifted morally if the attitude of the better people toward any brazen sinner was to "hibit him and 'hibit his hog." Martha's earnestness gave me a very lively sense of the real depth of her morality.


comes now a messenger on horseback. It is a Negro from a neighboring plantation, and he has brought a message from a boyhood chum, who wants to know if I cannot join him on a Christmas deer hunt, and then dine at his place. Appreciating the frailty of human nature, the messenger adds that the mint bed down at his master's place hasn't been frozen.

Suddenly our attention is attracted to the approach of a most massive figure toiling slowly down the avenue. It is a huge Negro.

"Here comes the crowd," mutters Prince, with an infectious chuckle.

Seven miles has he walked, seven sandy ones. It is Hacklus Manigo, a Negro of very singular and admirable type. Like most stout people, he has a keen mind, and he is well read. Until he became so heavy he used to be an engineer on a river steamer; and he belonged to a religious sect known as "the Sanctified Ones." Now, some people will smile at that; but, knowing Hacklus, I have never taken his religion mirthfully. By the light of a dingy lantern, in the oily and grimed cabin of a Santee River steamer, "in the dead vast and middle of the night," I have had him expound to me, with the sad penetration of naïve intelligence, the Gospel of St. John. His tiny Bible was thumbed and stained with oil. Hacklus always carried it with him; and he carried its contents in his heart. And because of that the owner of the steamer has told me that Hacklus was the best engineer on the coast; that, amid a thousand temptations to drink, he was ever Round the corner of the house there sober; that, while the other boat-hands

Prince, the wood ranger and plantation watchman, tells me in his quiet fashion how he has been trying to look out for the place, and how he has had several encounters with poachers and plunderers. He has but one remark to make about all these rapparees and land pirates. "I make them ca' sail." Possibly no expression that the Negroes use is more vivid. The trespassers were made to "crowd their canvas," as Tennyson says. Prince also tells me of the misfortune of old Cudjo, a plantation charge, whose mule had died from the effects of a slip-knot's having been tied about its neck; and Prince has the humor to suggest that creatures more intelligent than mules get into difficulties with slip-knots.

would wander off when the steamer touched at a town, this man was ever at his post. Kipling has hymned his McAndrews; in incomparably minor tones, but with not a whit less admiration, I can hymn this thoughtful black engineer. And now he's come to talk with me a while-not of hunts and of woodcraft, not of the affairs of the day and of the hour, but of the things of the spirit. "It's all in these two things," I hear him say, toward the end of our talk: "To do justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with God;' and, 'I am the resurrection and the life.'" I never hear those tremendous words without thinking of Hacklus Manigo; for his life has helped to teach me what they really



On the plantation dinner is usually served at night; and as I go into the dining-room I can see that every one is waiting for me to hear a story. It happens to be so human and so typical that it will bear telling. Its gentle satire is as harmless as it is delicious.

"Oh, do you know," my raconteur says, launching forth eagerly, "that the old Holbrook Randolph place has been sold? But it has been bought by such people! They've made money in fertilizer; they came originally from Oil City. Such hideous materialism! Well, of course they had to alter everything about the fine old place. And even the approach has been changed. The avenue now winds to the back door, which has been remodeled and made the entrance! Of course," comes the salient comment, "people of that kind never could get used to going into the Randolphs' front door!"

Festive is a plantation dinner table, with a huge haunch of venison, a wild turkey, snowy pyramids of steaming rice, crisp brown corn breads, and Bahama sweet potatoes, the sugar oozing out of their loose jackets. And there's the fellowship. And there are the plans for the morrow. Merrily the firelight plays on the frieze of stags' horns circling the room; it gleams on the faded paintings; warmly it enters and is lost among the lavish festoons of holly, myrtle, cassina, mistletoe, and smilax that deck the room.

When once more I go out on the broad porch, the moon has risen, striking sil ver lances through the misty river fens. Far off I can hear the Negroes singing their Christmas spirituals. They rise, those humble hymns, to the Creator in his mighty fane. The night has magic about it; I think of Whitman's superb phrase, "the huge and thoughtful night." Over the earth there is the sense of some serene arrival. The stars seem aware; the world is about to commemorate the coming of Love. And here, on this lonely plantation, even the humblest heart can feel that this is God's Holy Night; even the weariest heart can feel that all shall be well for them who love the Christ, and who, like Hacklus Manigo, try to walk humbly with their God.



NE of the few long-distance woodfuel river trips remaining in the Western Hemisphere is the journey from Fort McMurray, Alberta, to the delta of the Mackenzie River. The distance to and fro is three thousand miles. The steamers, loaded, draw three feet or less; in the shallow places that abound in the Athabasca River and the lake, soundings must be taken by two men stationed in the prow, and serpentine progress is slow. The paddle-wheels are nineteen and sixteen feet in diameter. The sixteen-foot paddle-wheel, which is that of the steamer that does four-fifths of the journey, below the rapids, at which the larger steamer transfers its freight, makes six revolutions per minute at two miles an hour, twenty-two revolutions at nine miles an hour, twenty-seven revolutions at its extreme speed of fourteen miles an hour. As the current of the river varies from two to six miles an hour, the pace is considerably accelerated or retarded as one goes downstream or up-stream. At nine miles an hour the fires eat three-quarters of a ton of four-foot spruce logs; at fourteen miles an hour the fuel consumption is about a cord.

Men spend the winter in the forest on the edge of the great stream to cut this wood and pile it on the bank. The serviceable timber is spruce. The black poplar (also called balm of Gilead and cottonwood) is plentiful, and it bulks as large, but it lacks the pith and stamina to make good fires. The little dry logs burn fast; logs cut with the sap in them and exuding the stickiest of gum last longer. There is as great a variation in the wood and in the way it is piled as in the men who cut it and leave it for the steamboat to find. One man who works alone, with a sled which he hauls himself instead of using dogs, has reared many a perishable monument to himself at a cost of $4 a cord to the company employing him. He saws at right angles; he piles at right angles; he builds a square bastion at each end of the pile. His work is the admiration of the rivermen. The wood-pile built by the Indian is likely to be of little old logs, too thin and too long dried, which look at the ends as if they had been chewed off by dogs or whittled the way some women sharpen a pencil.


One man last December, working alone, froze his foot. Then he amputated the toes with his jack-knife. Blood poisoning set in, and he lay helpless till he was rescued in April. dians sent to search out his solitary hut returned to Norman and reported that there was no one in his cabin. A contable of the Mounted Police then went, found poor McCreery, with a small flour beside him, scraping the om between the logs of his miserack. A doctor at Fort Norman


treated the foot, and is said to have charged $600. Our boat two months later burned the wood McCreery had cut and piled, and found it good.

If the axman piles the logs on the verge of the river, where it is most convenient for the boats, he may lose in a moment the fruit of his long toil. When the ice goes out of the rivers in June, it has no mercy on the banks. All along the stream the turf overhangs the rich black loam, which may be frozen to within a foot and a half of the surface. There is a continuous plashing of mud lumps into the water, as if fish were leaping. Stalwart and flourishing trees still stand at the very edge, but the dead gray trunks that have fallen into the stream, that perhaps will drift to the Arctic Ocean by and by, forecast the fate of the trees that still defy the undermining of the water and the frost.

Hence the wood-pile usually stands a hundred feet or so back from the ragged rim of the waterway. Thence it must be "toted" in the arms or on the shoulders of the crew, or of restive passengers desirous of exercise. Some are two-log and some are four-log, or even five-log men. The logs are thrown one by one into a narrow chute that reaches to the deck, and if the boat cannot tie up directly under the bank it may be necessary to use the wide, long gang-plank as well as the chute. If the slant of the chute is steep, the logs come cascading down speedily and violently; if the slope is gradual, it is necessary to direct a stream of water constantly upon it to keep it slippery.

The process of getting the wood aboard is more complex and cumbersome than the description intimates. In the way of an onslaught on the wood-pile there may be chevaux-de-frise of logs living, dying, and dead. It takes the eye of faith sometimes to discern timbers freshly cut and piled among those that are as nature or the wrack and ruin of the mighty wind and the battering of the ice left them. If the pilot lets the boat overshoot the almost indistinguishable mark in the hundreds of miles of

Other articles by Mr. Waldo on the Mackenzie River

country will be pub

lished in later issues

serrated spruce fringe, the boat is as helpless without fuel as a man is without food.


Your steamship fueled with coal or oil may seem animate, and not an impersonal machine, but one of these woodburning river boats is much closer to a breathing, vital, human organism. coughs red sparks upon the river as if these were the drops of its own blood; and it is indeed a dangerous contagion that is shed abroad therewith. For its length-but one hundred and forty-five feet-this boat is a rapacious creature. It must have meals several times an hour; and no half-portions, but an Eskimo feast, to the inelastic capacity of the ribs of the fire-box. One is inclined to believe that Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego would have declined to serve in the fire-pit of a Mackenzie steamer. Yet an Alberta lumberjack at $45 a month, spectacled against the hot white glare, takes a log as the wood-passer hands it to him from every nook and cranny the freight leaves free. yanks open the alarming jaw of Fafner with as little ceremony as if he were a traveling dentist and the furnace were the mouth of a baggy Indian squaw. As the bottom of the fire-pit is six feet below the deck, he must receive the big log at the level of his head as it is slid over the brink, and while flame breathes at him from the firing-front he may be getting a shower of dust and minute pieces of bark as he turns to take the log in his gloved hands.


He must follow the log all the way in -and the gloves are not asbestos. It often seems as if the hands were bathed in flame; even so Latimer and Ridley and the rest of the glorious book of martyrs must have approached the stake. Frequently after the monstrous morsel is lodged in the capacious maw it takes the wrong turning, and must be straightened. If it is too solidly lodged for a swift turn of the wrist to set it right, then-and only then-the fireman deigns to use an eight-foot poker of iron pipe. As he turns his sooty face up to you and smiles, he does not think he has done anything; but it is like the smile of Christian after he had discomfited the fiend Apollyon, who straddled over the whole breadth of the way and said, "Here will I spill thy soul." As the man on high in the pilot-house must, like Palinurus, keep his rudder true, even so the sweating gnome below, with oil on his burns, must keep the needle of the steam-gauge pointing to 175 pounds, or the engineer comes bustling from his piston-rods and link-heads to know why. Behind the whole rocking lumber shanty is the wheel-the great wheel throwing out small rapids that ripple clear across the river, frightening the young wild ducks that cannot fly and fairly leap out of the way and toss

ing the fox-tail grasses that stand for reeds along shore. The forest turns to fire; the water is transmuted into steam to move that wheel by which men are moved that wheel on which lives of men are broken.

Thus seen and felt, the boat is epic of the toil and passion of existence. It is ours to seek out, along the River of Life, the fuel of body, mind, and soul. What

worthless sticks we often choose! "The trees of the Lord are full of sap." We give the precious engine, not the best, but, many times, the very worst of all there is. The fuel we might take to be the spirit's nourishment is proffered from the whole rich and various demesne of science, art, and letters. The world is all before us where to choose, as it was before our parents leaving

Eden. "Man," saith the philosopher, "is an animal of noble preferences." How often, of our own motion, do we belie that utterance! "Give us this day our daily bread," our souls are crying; and instead we give them stones.

He "maketh his angels spirits, and his ministers a flame of fire." That fire must be fed with the right fuel or it dies.



HEN you go to hear a pianist, what do you expect? If you expect what you should not and the pianist does what he should, you will be disappointed. If you expect what you should and the pianist cannot fulfill his obligations to his art, you will be disappointed; but this time with unassailable reason. Too many persons regard music and its performance as some sort of mystery, comprehensible only to those possessed of special training, whereas to a certain extent any one who has a good ear and will apply common sense to his consideration of music can determine whether he ought to enjoy it or not.

If music is an art at all, it is the art of beauty in sound. We need not tor

(C) Underwood


ment ourselves by trying to arrive at a definition of beauty. Let us confess at once that beauty has never been successfully defined, and that it is entirely a matter of opinion. But the fact remains that among the cultivated peoples of the world there is a pretty general consensus of opinion. In regard to music the general view is that its fundamental beauty is the beauty of tone. If the sounds produced by instruments or voices are harsh, rough, impure, or, in a word, noises rather than musical tones, beauty cannot exist. For that reason we may without hesitation assert that the chief object of all musical technic is the production of euphonious tone. Probably that is what Liszt had in mind when he declared that three things were


"The master of phrase and accent"

needed to make a pianist: "First, technic; second, technic; third, technic." What he undoubtedly meant was that a perfect and inexhaustible technic is essential to good piano playing, for the reason that without it nothing can be made to sound beautiful.

Therefore let us begin with some reflections on the art of playing the piano. Nothing is more generally misunder stood than what constitutes good piano performance except what is good singing, and this is reserved for future discussion. The million amateur pianists find that their greatest difficulty is to strike the notes written in all the "hard pieces" which the masters have given us. It does not seem to occur to these amateurs that about the mechanical difficulty of fingering all those notes the composers never thought at all. They took that part of the execution for granted. So should we. A professioal pianist ought to be able to strike the notes in any of the standard piano compositions, to strike them while proceeding at the correct tempo, and to accent them correctly. False notes are simply forbidden.

But while playing the right notes the pianist ought also to be able to make them sound beautiful. No matter how intricate the passage, how rapid the succession of thirds or octaves or other combinations, no matter how compli cated the polyphony, the tone drawn from the piano must be beautiful or the performance fails of its ultimate purpose-namely, to restore to living. breathing eloquence the instrumental song which sleeps in silence on the printed page till the clinging kiss of the interpreter breaks the spell.

The piano is undeniably an instrument of percussion. Its tones are produced by the blows of hammers on metal strings. And the purposes of interpretation are often best accomplished by emphasizing the percussive nature of the piano. But the hammer of Thor or the ax of Sergei Prohofieff is not the hourly companion of the great artist of the keyboard. His chief aim is to disguise the percussive character of his instrument and to make it seem to sing. This semblance of singing is the greatest desider

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atum of all musical performance. What musicians mean by a singing tone is one that has a smooth and steady flow. In a series of singing tones united in a musical phrase the vocal quality is imparted by so performing them that they seem to be organically united. One note passes into the next without a noticeable break in the continuity of sound, yet the articulation between the two tones is not blurred, as in the exquisite cantilena of a Bauer or a Gabrilowitch. This is the acme of legato, as it is called, and a pure, smooth, sustained legato is the foundation of musical performance whether vocal or instrumental. It is the first and indispensable requisite of musical beauty.

The piano of to-day is capable of a far finer legato than the early ones. We have better strings, better soundingboards, better key actions, and better pedals. We possess sound-sustaining devices unknown to the makers of Mozart's and Beethoven's pianos. Yet the illusion of song has always been sought by pianists. Johann Sebastian Bach's son Emmanuel wrote:

Methinks music ought principally to move the heart, and in this no performer will succeed by merely thumping and drumming and by continual arpeggio playing. During the last few years my chief endeavor has been to play the pianoforte, in spite of its deficiency in sustaining sound, as much as possible in a singing manmer, and to compose for it accordly.



"All pianists and students of piano have made an idol of Godowsky because of his extraordinary technic. But many of us would rather listen to an erratic but imaginative child like Guiomar Novaes"

Mozart cherished similar ideals. He demanded of the pianist a smooth, gliding movement of the hands, so that the passages should flow like wine and oi!. In order that the vocal character of piano music might be preserved, Mozart wrote continually in the cantabile style (cantare-to sing) and developed many of his melodic thoughts from simple successions of notes of the scale. One wonders often whether Elly Ney ever heard of the wise sayings of Emmanuel Bach and Mozart.

But, while the singing melody is the basis of piano music, as it is of all other music, it is not the whole of it. Upon this foundation is reared an artistic structure in which variety in unity shows forth in all its engaging qualities. No one would wish to forego the pleasure experienced in hearing a pianist perform rapid passages with perfect smoothness and equality, with sonorous force and sunny clarity. While the pure cantabile melody may be the trunk of a composition, the florid passages are the natural and beautiful exfoliation, and we would regard some naked trunks as comparatively wintry objects.

In the performance of brilliant passages, and also in certain types of melody, the staccato, or short, sharp touch is required. The listener is justified in demanding that when a pianist has a staccato to play he shall play it muscally. Singers use the staccato, and the instrumental performer therefore can form a vocal ideal of this type of utter


What, then, is to be said about rapid passages in simultaneously sounding tones, thirds, sixths, and octaves, as the musicians would put it? Always the same: the tone must be musical. But here enters another addition. The balance must not be destroyed. The accord must consist of two or more tones, one of which usually belongs to the melody. The listener must require the player to make the melody clear at all times and to give to the accordant or discordant notes precisely the amount of force needed to make them furnish the harmonic character to the performance.

This is one of the most exacting requirements of artistic performance, for the pianist who expects to preserve the outline of his melody and the balance of his subsidiary voice parts (as they are called) at all times must possess fingers and wrists trained to the utmost pliancy and independence, and he must have them under such command that they execute his wishes automatically. The pianist cannot be thinking all the time just how hard he is to strike this or that note. His mind is rather intent on the larger matters of phrasing and the adaptation of his tempi and his broader dynamics to the interpretation of the composition.

We now come to the subject of rhythm. With all due regard for the brilliant liberation of their spirits by the muchliberated Cyril Scott, the untrammeled Ornstein, and other colorists of the impressionistic school, the music lover will

without doubt continue to insist on a clearly defined outline. Now in music the clarity of the outline of a composition depends not only upon a neat enunciation of the separate tones, but upon a perfect relation of their relative lengths, their varying degrees of force, and their utterance in unmistakable groupings called phrases. The phrasing of an instrumental composition. founded upon the same artistic principle as the lines of a poem, and the preserva tion of the identity of the line can be accomplished only by a correct treatment of the meter.


Not all the angels;

In heaven nor;

The demons down;

Under the sea;

Can ever dissever my soul;

From the soul of;

The beautiful Annabel Lee.


If you read it that way, the rhythm is spoiled, though it is impossible altogether to destroy it, while the phrasing -supposing it for the moment to be piano and not word music-is wholly ruined. But even when the lines are correctly phrased, the rhythm will still be imperfect if just the right emphasis is not laid on every syllable. In the larger forms of musical composition the melodic phrases are often very extended and the rhythms not simple, but compound. It is therefore the business of the pianist to convey to the hearer a clear and unmistakable outline, so that he may recognize the phrases of a melody and the melody as a whole. If you hear a blurred and uncertain melody, groping, as it were, its way toward you, be sure there is something wrong with the performance. The most uncouth or vague melody can be played in such a way that the responsibility for its defects will be shown to be the composer's, not the performer's. And when one thinks of perfection in rhythm one thinks of Josef Hofmann, the master of phrase and accent.

One of the commonest faults in piano playing is underestimating the relative sonorities of the upper and lower strings. The high treble notes are sounded by short strings with short vibrations; the bass strings are long and have more enduring vibrations. Pianists often forget this and make the bass of a passage resound so that the treble is obscured and the outline of the melody lost. Obviously a composer wishes that every thing shall be heard, but in proper proportion. It must be plain to the reader that good phrasing is impossible when the bass overbalances the treble, except in cases where the melody is in the bass. Perhaps enough has been said about the office of the hands. Now a word as to the feet. The possibilities of the pedals are very great. The amateur of music, unfortunately, has been taught to call them "loud" and "soft." But a pianist can play just as loudly without using a pedal as with one. He will, how



"One note passes into the next without a noticeable break in the continuity of sound, as in the exquisite cantilena of . . . a Gabrilowitch"

ever, obtain a different kind of loudness. When a pianist strikes a key, he raises a damper, and as long as he holds the key down the strings of that note will vibrate freely till their vibrations die out. When on striking the key he also depresses the "loud" pedal, he raises all the dampers in the instrument and thus permits all sympathetic strings and their overtones to vibrate.

When he depresses the soft pedal, he shuts off one of the strings of a note (in a modern grand each note has three! and causes the instrument to give forth a more veiled tone. By various combinations of pedals and the union of such combinations with the several kinds of touch pianists produce those extraordinary illusions of changing qualities of sound which we call tone colors. It is not essential to an intelligent enjoyment of piano playing that one should know all about touch and pedals, for touch is so subtle that, in the last analysis, it becomes an individual gift. But even a tyro can understand that some difference must result when you strike the key with a stiff finger or a relaxed one. with the flat surface of the extremity or with its point.

Finally, as to interpretation. This brings us to indeterminate quantities, for, while it is easy enough to decide when the interpreter is entirely wrong, it is impossible to pronounce a conclusive verdict when several admittedly

great artists disagree. The true artist assimilates the composition. It becomes a part of his own artistic organization. When he gives it back to the public, he gives himself as nourished by Beethoven. Chopin, or Schumann. But at least the thoughtful listener can study the manifestations of the performer's temperament. Intellect and emotion must each play its proportionate part. As the author of this article has said elsewhere, "Music is a glorious ship on the ocean of art; emotion is the breeze that fills the sails; intellect is the skilled hand at the wheel."

The intellect is the designing power, and without design there is no art. Piano playing which is merely a bewildering exhibition of technical "virtuosity," as it is called, is worthy of admiration for just what it is, but it is far from being the supreme achievement of the pianist. This explains the attitude of critics who demand always that a pianist shall show ability to interpret some work of high intellectual design, such as a Beethoven sonata or the Schumann fantasia, before they will accord him a seat among the gods of his art. All pianists and students of piano have made an idol of Codowsky because of his extraordinary technic. But many of us would rather listen to an erratic but imaginative child like Guiomar Novaes or a solid master of form and style like William Bachaus.

Another article on "The Enjoyment of Music" will appear in an early issue. It is called "About Good Violin Playing"

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