Colorado College Tutt Library

Century Chest transcription 56

[Letter 1]

Colorado Springs.
August 4th 1901.

To The citizens of Colorado Springs in the year 2001

Brethren, through times of storms and love.

Although I have but recently become a resident in this beautiful city, I have been asked to contribute to the Century Chest, as you will discover on opening it at the appropriate time.

It is an honor and a pleasure to us indeed to have bee afforded this opportunity of speaking to those who shall come after us in this city. And it has been with joy that I have added my share, small though it be, to the celebrations that have taken place here, in the form of a little ode "Colorado," and, again; a hymn, "Land of our Home" for these dedication services; the manuscripts of these poems are included with this letter for you to see.

This city is indeed one of great beauty and attraction; and doubtless it will grow in size and importance and beauty. Such a blessing it has proved to me, who find in it health and happiness, such as have never blessed us before. But my thoughts and hopes concerning Colorado, and this city in particular, are expressed so fully in the manuscript poem, that further words on this subject are unnecessary.

With my own photograph, which I have been requested to place in this envelope, I also enclose that of Ida Rosalie Fursman, the lady to whom I became affianced this year, and through whom Colorado Springs has proved the source of the greatest happiness to us.

You may read these words of mine long after we have passed away, but we greet you through the centuries of time, and bid you prosper and prove the future to be worthier than the present, and trust that God may bless you and this our dear city throughout all time.

Yours in hope and trust and love

Arthur J. Kew


An ode written for The Quarto-Centennial Celebration

Arthur J. Kew

July 1901


Now swell we all the loud triumphal song
In true accord with deep-toned melody
Of martial music; while both heart and tongue
In joyous consentaneous [?] harmony
Pour forth sweet offerings for this Jubilee,
This silver Celebration, this great hour,
This consummation of hard labors o'er,
Whose budding hopes have blossomed into flower,
Giving most proud assurances evermore!
Let us sing with mirthful voices
Hopes, for which each heart rejoices!
And bring to fond remembrance former days,
Those fine presageful [?] times whose crowning date
Is throned in every mind, as with high praise,
A chorus glad, we join to celebrate
The seed-time and the growth of this our glorious state!


What glory in primeval days was thine,
What wonders working for this latter age
What story, though unwritten, we divine
Only upon thy lithographic page,
O Colorado! but the heritage
Was handed on by many an Indian brave,
Lord of the Ute, Apache, or Cheyenne,
Who finds in thee a hunting-ground and grave
Fit for the sons of prehistoric men!
Here the Red Man seeks his pleasure,
Food, and all his earthly treasure!
But northward roves the fiery Mexican,
Northward and east; till o'er dividuous seas
The greater sons of Europe learn to span
That prairie-belt, and reach by slow degrees
Thy happy clime, O Flowering Land of fallow leas!


Hail to each dreadless Dead, adventurous soul,
Who went before us to prepare the way!
Hail to you, Pike, who dared first to unroll
That unknown page! and Long of after-day!
Bonneville! Fremont! all who did essay
Dangerous enterprise, that they might break
The barriers down, and regions new proclaim!
Whether your name on monumental Peak
Be carven; or a city bears your fame!
Hail, all hail!" with notes sonorous
Lift we all the triumph-chorus!
But woe befell thee then, O Virgin-Land!
And contest dire 'twixt lovers new and old,
Who loved thee for thy beauty, and thy hand
Sought for thine own sweet sake; until was told
The secret of thy wealth, and dowried store of gold!


Land of the Setting Sun! O Golden Land!
With richest nurture in thy bounteous breast
For all the members of thy foster-band,
Rejoicing in a motherhood so blest!
How thou wert wooed and won! through what unrest
Thou passsedst when that talismanic "gold!"
Was borne from lip to lip! what myriads then
Sought thee, and formed in thee, - some, wealth untold;
Some, the mere chance of fortune-seeking men!
Lo! the mountain-forests clearing,
Log-huts, mining-camps appearing!
Whence towns and cities rise, and wane, and rise;
Whence all the art that follows in man's wake;
The cultivation 'neath resplendent skies
Of virgin-soil; whence all those tasks that make
For happiness, performed for home and comfort's sake!


Nor is that prize of gold above thy stove.
The aureate hue that marks thy golden veins
Is paled by many a streak of argent ore.
What plentitude! what meed for toil and pains!
So Tabor finds, and shares his well-won gains!
For every mine in heaped abundance pours
Its huge bonanzas, for who will to take!
While Evans speeds thy loads to foreign shores,
New bonds of Commerce with thee, thus, to make!
Riches evermore increasing
Flow from thee in streams unceasing!
As o'er the leagues and leagues that cut thee off,
See how thy Palmer, princeliest pioneer,
Hagerman, Howbert, though the caņons rough,
The continental courses proudly steer,
Linking thy mimes to mark of many another sphere!


Then comes the glorious year - that Natal Year!
That memory to one great fadeless date!-
And bids thee out of swaddling bands appear
With the full privilege of man's estate!
From territory to Centennial State!
Thus o'er the 'horizon to the perfect day,
To the white light of an assembled Nation,
Thou comest with thy golden-silvery ray,
Lustrous within that lustrous Convocation!
Slate-born heir of that Centennial,
Be thy growth henceforth perennial!
And thou hast waxed more brilliant since that dawn,
Still climbing towards the zenith of thy course,
Despite those days when thou wert overborne
By darkling clouds, that seemed to shroud the source
Of thy great power, but never could thy wealth divorce!


Girl with this panoply of wealth and power,
From victory to greater victories
Thou marchest, bearing all thy manhood's flower,
That, like thy Hill, who gave thee richest prize
for drossy ore, to loftiest heights may rise.
And as a parent, loving, proud, and wise,
With ripest fruits of learning thou wouldst nourish
Thy children in thy universities:
So knowledge spreads and learning best may flourish!
Lo, thy bounty and discerning,
Thus to feed the mind's true yearning!
Thus many taught. Thus honored Slocum leads
Thy youth to studious life with tireless zest.
And so when students beg, and learning needs
Strattion, thy mining-king, famed east and west
For public spirit, opens his exhaustless chest!


O Promised Land, with milk and honey blest! -
Ye fruitful Fields, from which man's labors reap
So great a harvest! Orchards of the West,
Whose ripened fruits our tables richly heap!
Ye Gardens of the Rockies, that still keep
Your floral beauty in profuse array!
Ye snow-capt Peaks, and towering Canon-heights!
Ye spreading Plains ! - we celebrate this day
Your wealth, wherein your Pabor [?] most delights!
Sweetest plenty swells thy bosom,
Decked with many a wild-flower blossom!
Nor from thy womb teems all thy wealth and might:
How great the glory in those brilliant eyes,
Thy sun by day, thy moon and stars by night!
What founts of health and happiness arise
'Neath the bright canopy of thy cerulean skies!


Honor be rendered unto thee, our State!
Yea, now with joy and due solemnity,
In fair and festival we celebrate,
In conclave, carnival, and pageantry,
All that we love and honor most in thee!
Here are thy Women met with stately brow
And dulcet tones, their part in thee to prove.
There are thy Pioneers, grown hoary now
In deeds of daring, when for thee they strove.
Here parades thy early story,
There is shown thy floral glory!
Now the Rough Riders meet in rivalry
The Indian braves; and Cowboys join in sport;
Here, Ministers of State; and there, we see
Who serve with pen and voice a People's thought:
All with one hope of honoring thee together brought!


Dear Land of Hope and Health and Happiness!
Land of blue sky and beauteous scenery!
Thou Wonder, formed to awe us and caress,
To pour thy ceaseless riches and to be
Throughout the world a bounteous prodigy!
Thou dazzling Splendor midst thy starry mates,
Brightest in all this stellar firmament!
Chosen of all this company of States
As the one great Centennial Monument!
Colorado! Colorado!
Thou art our true Eldorado!
Oh, may thy sons be ever great and strong;
And all thy daughters tender, loving true;
Thy statesmen wise; thy servants do no wrong;
And from thy laws justice and peace ensue:
While thou from strength to strength thy noble course pursue!

[Letter 2]

Colorado Springs
August 5th 1901

To The Citizens of Colorado Springs in 2001.

I make this little additional contribution to the Century Chest - a few manuscript sonnets written to Ida Rosalie Fursman, whose photograph is enclosed with mine in the envelope which is now placed in that Chest.

May you all be blessed with such love, the true fount of all that is best and worthiest and noblest in life.

Arthur J. Kew

Sonnets written to Ida Rosalie Fursman.

My Star

There is one Star, one only perfect Star,
Illumes my boundless Heaven as well by day
As through the night; and with undying ray
Leadeth me on beyond the narrow bar
Of mortal confines; on to the Afar,
Piloting me o'er life's perturbed bay,
Through all Eternity's great ocean-way,
On to the realms where the Immortal are!

My Star! that shin'st with love's most lustrous sheen,
Brighter than Heaven's irradiant galaxy!
My own Lodestar! Through whom the ways unroll
Of lye and death, all that has ever been,
And all that now remains on earth for me,
Or Heaven, reflects the radiance of thy soul!

The Soul's Eloquence

This is the pinnacle, the starry height
Of love, to know such happy harmony,
Such oneness and soul-soothing sympathy,
That no cold cloud of doubt may ever blight
The fragrant blossom of our heart's delight!
Nay, but that each new morn of life may be
The 'unfolding of the perfect flower for thee
And me, whom such deep passion doth unite!

My Own! then is a silence of the soul
More eloquent than any golden speech;
A whispering wafting of the spirit, that blows
Whene'er it listeth, brooking no control
Of will, but secret in the heart of each.
We know this eloquence! and God, too, know!

The Perfect Man

Oh for the 'imagination and sweet strain
Of Shakespeare; and Christ's spirit to command
The soul and heart of man; the 'imperial hand
Of Alexander, prompt to cut in twain
Each Gordian know of living; Plato's brain,
The Pole-Star of Thought's constellates band;
The wondrous will without the burning brand,
That marked Napoleon's march to wide domain!

O Coming Race! I seem to vision thee
Crowned with the conquests of the yearning years,
Sceptered with right true majesty of soul; Body, mind, spirit, - our Being's Trinity, -
Complete, co-equal! - And in thee appears
The Perfect Man, type of the Perfect Whole!

For Thy Dear Sake

For thy dear sake, let me be perfect too,
Purified seven times by the living fire
Of brain to understand; faith to aspire;
Imagination, that can best endow
The heart and soul of things with white-heat glow;
And will to' attain the summit of desire,
That looks still upward, onward; cannot tire,
In deeds of love, so much it would bestow!

Sun of the sphere of Life! O Lustrous Love!
'Tis thou hast quickened me, hast lifted me
To the true fount of Being! Now let me slake
My trusting soul in worthier works, that prove
With what great hope, what truth, what fervency,
I seek that perfect life! For thy dear sake! -

Life's Jewel

Who truly lives, and holds of worthiest price
This life of mingled prose and poetry,
Lives with concentric aim
nor suffer he
One less-ideal duty to entice
His soul's achievement, but for each suffice
Its fitting time and place, that all may be
The lesser jewels round that brilliancy,
Set in the crown of life with ran [?] device!

Amor St. An [?]! The tiom[?]-ideal gem,
The brilliant, that with many facets burns
Into my soul its fiery oracle!
Thou starry Glory of life's diadem,
My being yearns for thee; nor only yearns;
I strive and will attain thee, if God will! -

[Letter 3]

Land of our Home

Verses written to the music of "Home, Sweet Home" to be sung at The Dedication of the Century Chest.

Arthur J. Kew

August 3rd 1901


In sweet celebration beneath these azure skies,
Glad anthems of praise from our grateful hearts arise,
Now mingling with voices of some, who far did roam,
And gain from the Wild this great Land to be our Home!
Land of our dear, dear Home!
From countries far we come,
To thee our dear, dear Home!


Thou Land of the Rockies, so bounteous and fair!
Although we may wander mid pleasures everywhere,
How gladly to thee do we evermore return,
Where Home doth await us, and loving Hearts that year!
Land of our dear, dear Home!
Though far we may roam,
There's no place like Home!


And you now we greet, who in centuries to come
Will find 'neath these heavens the happiness of Home,
Oh, blest be your lives with this hallowed heritage,
The Land we bequeath you through every future age!
Land of our dear, dear Home!
Be yours, that are to come,
So sweet, so dear a Home!


Ah! we shall have passed, but our memories be dear,
Our names unforgotten; and, though we seem not near,
Our spirits may hover around you and above;
Our kindred we claim you through ties of Home and Love!
Land of your dear, dear Home!
Though Heaven then our Home,
Thou still on Earth art Home!

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