earless rover - from wilderness to wilderness, with mind & soul alert to explore the things of Nature that have been from the foundation of the world. That is John Muir the Naturalist. He is an ardent enthusiast, leading a life of strenuous endeavor; - with a soul kindled and ever kindling with desire to more and still more of Nature's secrets, and to revel in the joy of [them?] - lured on, like Adam, listening to Raphael, "the affable archangel lured on" - as one whose drouth "Yet scarce allayed, still eyes the current stream "Whose liquid murmur heard new thirst excites." His thist is insatiable - one that grows as it is fed. He does not count himself as one [having?] while aught remains unattained but attainable. And he has learned to know meadows and forests, and mountains, and glaciers, rivers and lakes - everything in Flora or Fauna2 in the mountain regions of Western North America - every thing that blooms, or sings, or walks, or creeps or climbs or crawls, or flies - or toddles. Loving the things that he knows, he is never a cruel hunter, nor a wanton waster of the woods. A lover of books, a reader versed in literatures, he is still more a lover of Nature - in her wildest woods and most forbidding forests not less than in her peaceful valleys, and all her haunts of beauty (Quatations from Bryant's "Thanatopsis" and "Monument Mountain") Some Englishman of note (Sydeney Smith, I think.) said of Daniel Webster: "He is a steam engine in breeches." We may say of John Muir: he is a storage battery of energy, encased in flexible, elastic steel, & clothed upon with the ordinary conventional garb of civilized man. The battery is never "dead" but instantly ready for his use - responsive to his will. And so he goes whither02841
1901 Feb 15
Original letter dimensions: 22.5 x 14.5 cm.
Reel 11, Image 0603
Copyright status unknown