Selected Works of Rudyard Kipling Mine Own People | American Notes | The Courting of Dinah Shadd and Other Stories | Under the Deodars and Other Tales | Departmental Ditties, Barrack-Room Ballads, and Other Verses - Vol. 3

Selected Works of Rudyard Kipling Mine Own People | American Notes | The Courting of Dinah Shadd and Other Stories | Under the Deodars and Other Tales | Departmental Ditties, Barrack-Room Ballads, and Other Verses - Vol. 3

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Selected Works of Rudyard Kipling Mine Own People | American Notes | The Courting of Dinah Shadd and Other Stories | Under the Deodars and Other Tales | Departmental Ditties, Barrack-Room Ballads, and Other Verses - Vol. 3

Selected Works of Rudyard Kipling Mine Own People | American Notes | The Courting of Dinah Shadd and Other Stories | Under the Deodars and Other Tales | Departmental Ditties, Barrack-Room Ballads, and Other Verses - Vol. 3

Read FREE!

Excerpt

It would be difficult to answer the general question whether the books of the world grow, as they multiply, as much better as one might suppose they ought, with such a lesson of wasteful experiment spread perpetually behind them. There is no doubt, however, that in one direction we profit largely by this education: whether or not we have become wiser to fashion, we have certainly become keener to enjoy. We have acquired the sense of a particular quality which is precious beyond all others--so precious as to make us wonder where, at such a rate, our posterity will look for it, and how they will pay for it. After tasting many essences we find freshness the sweetest of all. We yearn for it, we watch for it and lie in wait for it, and when we catch it on the wing (it flits by so fast) we celebrate our capture with extravagance. We feel that after so much has come and gone it is more and more of a feat and a tour de force to be fresh. The tormenting part of the phenomenon is that, in any particular key, it can happen but once--by a sad failure of the law that inculcates the repetition of goodness. It is terribly a matter of accident; emulation and imitation have a fatal effect upon it. It is easy to see, therefore, what importance the epicure may attach to the brief moment of its bloom. While that lasts we all are epicures.

This helps to explain, I think, the unmistakable intensity of the general relish for Mr. Rudyard Kipling. His bloom lasts, from month to month, almost surprisingly--by which I mean that he has not worn out even by active exercise the particular property that made us all, more than a year ago . . .

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