An Argument for the Maintenance of Peace and Goodwill with the Japanese


Glossary for the uninstructed and the hasty: Jimmu Tenno, ancestor of

all the Japanese Emperors; Nikko, Japan's loveliest shrine; Iyeyasu, her

greatest statesman; Bushido, her code of knighthood; The Forty-seven

Ronins, her classic heroes; Nogi, her latest hero; Fuji, her most

beautiful mountain.

# The minstrel speaks. #

"Now do you know of Avalon

That sailors call Japan?

She holds as rare a chivalry

As ever bled for man.

King Arthur sleeps at Nikko hill

Where Iyeyasu lies,

And there the broad Pendragon flag

In deathless splendor flies."

# The jingo answers. #

_"Nay, minstrel, but the great ships come

From out the sunset sea.

We cannot greet the souls they bring

With welcome high and free.

How can the Nippon nondescripts

That weird and dreadful band

Be aught but what we find them here:--

The blasters of the land?"_

# The minstrel replies. #

"First race, first men from anywhere

To face you, eye to eye.

For _that_ do you curse Avalon

And raise a hue and cry?

These toilers cannot kiss your hand,

Or fawn with hearts bowed down.

Be glad for them, and Avalon,

And Arthur's ghostly crown.

"No doubt your guests, with sage debate

In grave things gentlemen

Will let your trade and farms alone

And turn them back again.

But why should brawling braggarts rise

With hasty words of shame

To drive them back like dogs and swine

Who in due honor came?"

# The jingo answers. #

_"We cannot give them honor, sir.

We give them scorn for scorn.

And Rumor steals around the world

All white-skinned men to warn

Against this sleek silk-merchant here

And viler coolie-man

And wrath within the courts of war

Brews on against Japan!"_

# The minstrel replies. #

"Must Avalon, with hope forlorn,

Her back against the wall,

Have lived her brilliant life in vain

While ruder tribes take all?

Must Arthur stand with Asian Celts,

A ghost with spear and crown,

Behind the great Pendragon flag

And be again cut down?

"Tho Europe's self shall move against

High Jimmu Tenno's throne

The Forty-seven Ronin Men

Will not be found alone.

For Percival and Bedivere

And Nogi side by side

Will stand,--with mourning Merlin there,

Tho all go down in pride.

"But has the world the envious dream--

Ah, such things cannot be,--

To tear their fairy-land like silk

And toss it in the sea?

Must venom rob the future day

The ultimate world-man

Of rare Bushido, code of codes,

The fair heart of Japan?

"Go, be the guest of Avalon.

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