National Geographic : 1915 Sep
POETS' CORNER : WESTMINSTER ABBEY, LONDON This is situated in the south transept and contains memorials of England's greatest writers and poets from Chaucer onward. The bust on the left is of Longfellow. James Russell Lowell's contributions to literature are memorialized by a stained-glass window in the Chapter House. seeing its parks. When my brother, a little lad of seven or eight years, came home from his first London visit, small sister asked: "What (lid you like best ?" In a tone of unalterable, unassailable conviction came the answer: "The Zoo !" Like an Irish friend, he cared more for living than dead lions. After a very sat isfying visit to Westminster Abbey, I foolishly asked this friend what he thought of it. "Sure," said he; "it re minds me of a graveyard taken in out of the rain." WHERE FREE SPEECH IS NO EMPTY FIGURE Hyde Park, as I remember it, was a place of demagogues and loud-voiced oratory: yet that is manifestly unfair. The brightest and best of England's youth and age ride in Rotten Row '(Route du Roi) of a summer morning; drive beside the Serpentine of an after noon; but almost every Sunday in the year and some days in between hoarse promoters of new labor laws or new re ligions hold forth just inside the gate to floating audiences, which shift and drift impartially from one speaker to another. To know the park one should see it at both times, and, unless too middle-aged, should join at least once the group of very young and quite old, who sail toy boats on its pretty waters. But to play one ought to go on into Kensington Gar dens, and who dares now write of that after Peter Pan? I have looked for him often there-I know the places-but it is too late. I am too old or not old enough. St. James Park is lovely. It is not large (93 acres), yet the gracious ar rangement of trees and shrubs, the wind ing water, give it an impression of spa ciousness. It skirts the broad avenue leading to Buckingham Palace and is flanked by stately buildings. It is love liest just before sunset, when the trees are casting their longest shadows upon the golden sward and the pelican and heron upon Duck Island are pruning and prinking for the night, their glistening white breasts blushing softly in the sun's last light. There are soft bird-calls and rustlings and twitterings; there is the odor of many flowers; the city's noise is hushed to a distant hum; far away the Westminster bells boom softly; the light fades, flickers, and is gone-so comes the night.