Page:Life of John Boyle O'Reilly.djvu/404

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JOHN BOYLE O'REILLY.

bless the two loves of your patriotism. God bless your noble America, and God save your beloved Ireland!

Perhaps nothing said in praise of his memory was more in the spirit of eulogy which he would have loved best, because it was eulogy of his country and his countrymen, than these words from the pen of a Protestant clergyman. Rev. H. Price Collier, in the Boston Saturday Evening Gazette:

If the Almighty should undertake to create a man who was to be universally popular, no doubt he would create him a Celt. The Celtic temperament, with its ready adaptability to persons and circumstances, its quick wit, its fresh and wholesome out-of-door tone, its mental chastity, its masculine love of sport and of danger, its craving for freedom from restraint,—these together go to make up perhaps the most fascinating type of man we know. Such men make delightful playfellows as boys, and as men ideal lovers, lover-like husbands, stanch friends, open, frank enemies, and patriotic citizens. There is nothing of the subtlety and stealthiness of the Italian, of the morbid restlessness of the Gaul, of the indigested barbarism of the German in them; and though they lack here and there the steadiness of the Saxon, they easily surpass him both in facility of adapting one's self and in felicity of expressing it. John Boyle O'Reilly was a Celt of the very best type, whose friends were in the right and whose enemies—if he had any—were in the wrong; for his friends were all made for him by his real character, and his enemies by mistaken estimates of him.

Many fine poems were written in memory of the dead singer, beautiful tributes of sorrow and praise from his brother and sister poets,—James Whitcomb Riley, Mary E. Blake, John W. O'Keefe, M. J. McNeirny, Louise Imogen Guiney, and a score of others, who had known and loved and owed gratitude for a thousand kindly deeds to this kindliest of men. One of the most touching came anonymously from San Diego, Cal., entitled simply:

AUGUST 10, 1890.

I stirred in my sleep with a sudden fear.
The breath of sorrow seemed very near.
And the sound of weeping; I woke and said,
"Some one is dying, some one is dead."