James and Mary Ford, eds. Every Day in the Year. 1902.

January 18

To Austin Dobson

By Richard Watson Gilder (1844–1909)

(Born Jan. 18, 1840)

LAUREATE of the Gentle Heart!

Only art like your art,

Limpid, gracious, happy-phrased,

Could praise you as you should be praised,

Many a lyric you have writ,

Grave with pathos, gay with wit,

Or conceived in larger mood,

Shall outlast the clattering brood

That usurp our noisy day;

Shall, that all that’s noble, stay

In our well-loved English tongue

Till the ending song is sung;

For no purer tone was heard

Since men sought Beauty and the Word.