AN ARGUMENT FOR THE MAINTENANCE OF PEACE AND GOODWILL WITH THE JAPANESE PEOPLE
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.
"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."
"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?"
"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?"
"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!"
"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. Believe me, it lies there Behind the mighty gray sea-wall Where heathen bend in prayer: Where peasants lift adoring eyes To Fuji's crown of snow. King Arthur's knights will be your hosts, So cleanse your heart, and go.
"And you will find but gardens sweet Prepared beyond the seas, And you will find but gentlefolk Beneath the cherry-trees. So walk you worthy of your Christ Tho church bells do not sound, And weave the bands of brotherhood On Jimmu Tenno's ground."