Page:Path of Vision; pocket essays of East and West.djvu/68

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THE PATH OF VISION

VII


A FOOTNOTE OF NATURE


THROUGH her own medium, Nature's appeal is not always adequate. Her language is not understood alike by the woodman and the poet. Her secret is often hidden under her articulate charm; and she unveils only to the elect of the soul and mind. That is why we often get more of her through the medium of the interpreter, who pursues his task with the patience and faithfulness of a devotee. But even these translations, whether they be literal or poetic, have a varying degree of merit and interest. John Burroughs, for instance, is an excellent guide; but Thoreau, who knows as well the winding paths, the forest trails, the secret nooks and hidden mysteries, can also entertain us with a song. Even in the idealization of Nature, we have such a variety as ranges from the mirage-like glamor of Turner to the rhythmic delicacies of Corot to the apocalyptic

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