Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 71.djvu/330

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truth and reality, we have the poets, the nature poets of a high class, for we are not now concerned with the clever versifiers, the bookish imitators, nor with those who see nature and life morbidly or fantastically, through false and distorted glasses. The true poets, like Homer, or Shakspere, or Tennyson, see nature as truthfully as the scientists, they seize upon what is significant for their purpose, they base their imagination upon what is real and vital; they are like Wordsworth's skylark, singing up into the sky but keeping heart and eye on the nest upon the ground,

Type of the wise, who soar, but never roam—
True to the kindred points of Heaven and Home.

These poets are not the ones to make the nightingale and skylark sing in America, nor to be accused by Ruskin of pathetic fallacy in making their words express emotions which they know to be false. They are the ones who have a sincere insight into life and nature and express their true thought and feelings in all the imaginative beauty of their art. Linné was like a true poet in that he was capable of poetic imagination and beautiful expression, perhaps the chief difference being that with him this was incidental, with the poet supreme.

Like the scientists, Linné saw nature accurately; like the naturalists, he saw it sympathetically; like the poets, he saw it beautifully; like all of them, he saw it truthfully. Further still, like the prophets and seers, he saw the significance of things in the universe, he looked through what Carlyle calls the "show of things" into the things themselves, he penetrated into Goethe's "open secret."

The more we walk with Linné in the gardens, the ängs, the fjälls of his beloved Sweden, the more we shall appreciate how his inborn love for nature, showing itself in so many ways, was a vital part of his life, and the more we shall share in his joy in the works of creation. His love for nature leaves with us a memory, like that of a glorious morning, a sunshiny day, a calm and peaceful evening. Such a love for nature takes us out from the pent-up city and shows us, as it did Keats, how sweet it is

to look into the fair
And open face of heaven.

Such a love for nature fills our hearts with sunshine and joy, and, as it did for Linné, he who loved the little twin-flower, it opens our eyes to the truth and to the beauty of nature and of life.