He had not passed on life's highway the stone that marks the highest point but being weary for a moment, he lay down by the wayside, and using his burden for a pillow fell into that dreamless sleep that kisses his eyelids shut. While yet in love with life and __________________________world, he passed into silence and pathetic dust. Yet, after all it may be best just in the happiest, sunniest hour of all the voyage, while eager winds are kissing every sail, to dash against the unseen rock, and in an instant hear the billows roar above the sunken ship. For whether in mid sea or among the breakers of the further shore, a wreck at last must mark the end of each and all. And every life, no matter if its every hour is rich with love and every moment jeweled with a joy, will, at ist close, become a tragedy as sad and deep and dark as can be woven of the warp and wool of mystery and death. Life is a narrow bale between the cold and barren peaks of two eternities.
The funeral was held at the house Wednesday afternoon at 2:00 o'clock. The services were very pretty and brief. Mr. Paul Hathaway, Miss Kate Blachly and Miss Blanch Dickinson sang a beautiful song and H.H. Ragon read a poem written by Harry as commorative of the sixteenth anniversary of the death of his mother. Prof. Loomis, of Chicago, read a paper which was supposed to be written by Prof. Geer from the spirit world since Mr. Burnham's death. Mrs. Dr. Phillips was the medium through which the writing was procured. The poem and this writing are both published in this paper this week. A large number of friends met at the house and paid their last tribute of respect to one loved by all.
Of Mr. Burnham's death the Inter Ocean says:
* NOTE -- In the above article, Harry N. Burnham's father was listed as Calvin Burnham. There is an obituary for a Kellog M. Burnham, however, that lists Harry M. Burnham as a son who predeceased him. In Kellog Burnham's obituary, his son Harry had the same birth and death dates as the Harry N. Burnham in this article. It would seem likely that Calvin Burnham is the same man as Kellog Burnham.
How strangely life's journey resembles a river --
Its pools and its shallows, its shadows and light --
As it winds through the forest or whirls down the rapids,
And then creeps away to the ocean so bright.
In dreamy abstraction I sit here and ponder;
My mind troops with fancies that seem like a dream;
Once more I am back in the sweet time of childhood,
Far back at the source of this life's pleasant stream.
I seem to float on in a boat like a sea shell
So frail are its walls and its colors so fair;
On a stream like a thread spun of purest silver,
It banks fringed with blossoms so rich and so rare.
Now into the shadows, now out in the sun-light,
I play with the blossoms that hang o'er the stream.
What beauty and gladness at the source of life's river,
What blessed contentment in childhood's first dream.
Anon in my journey one stream becomes troubled,
The waters no longer glide noiselessly by.
Dark shadows creep out where before were bright blossoms.
Tumultuous tempests are raging on high.
My frail little bark is dashed hither and thither.
The dark clouds enshroud me -- Tis the blackness of night;
The fierce winds assail in this storm on life's river.
Tis life's first bereavement that shuts out the light.
Ah, that first bereavement! the loss of that loved one
Whose hand has so tenderly guided life's bark
Seemed to change the whole current of that pleasant river,
Transforming its bosom now sullen and dark.
I sit here and dream and again the scene changes.
Once more I am out on the broad river's breast
And see my frail boat has grown stronger and stauncher,
How lightly it rides on the wave's angry crest.
The threatening billows are all round about me.
I hear their loud plash on the pebbly shore,
While down the wide river my boat hurries onward
Through maddening sworl and thunderous roar.
Surrounded am I with contention and canker;
Here pleasure and pain buffeted passion and strife.
It is the flood tides of the river of manhood
That stretches around me the whirl-pool of life.
I look far away to the mouth of the river,
To the sunset of life lying low in the west,
To where the horizon dips down to the ocean --
The ocean of peaceful contentment and rest.
How strange it all seems as I sit here and ponder,
Retracing the tortuous course of the stream
That bore me along through the sun light and shadow.
Ah life retrospectively is naught
Loss this garment worn and old
by the years about it pressing.
Bearing in each tattered fold
to the wearer naught of blessing.
Loss this temple of your care
worn by time's exultant marches.
Till unfit that one so fair
dwell beneath its crumbling arches.
Loved by us because erstwhile
just within its lighted portal
you never fail to meet the smile
of the spirit grown immortal.
Now the curtains have been drawn
and the light no longer swelling
shows us that the inmate's gone
from the poor and worthless dwelling.
Gone, but where? and what's the change?
Let us strive to read the meaning
and pierce the gloom that's ever strange.
'Tween here and there is intervening.
Gone from golden youth,
from helplessness, to strength and beauty.
Gone to learn a higher truth
and follow out a higher duty.
Gone to know the friends of yore.
Methinks I see the joyous meeting
at the ever open door.
And list the glad seraphic greeting.
Gone to wear a robe more new
than this poor worn-out one before us.
Gone to learn a way more true
than to our gaze has glimmered o'er us
Gone to a temple fairer far
than here on earth could be builded.
Just behind the harbor bar.
By worthy deeds adorned and guilded.
Gone from a winter's chill and care
to summer lands forever vernal.
Gone from the weary pain and care
to that sweet home of joy eternal.
Dead? O, no, he is not dead.
He whose smiles was ever winning.
But in a fuller life instead.
His truest work is just beginning.
Dear friends, if tears you shed, Oh, let them fall
for your own poor mortal blindness
that hides beneath a funeral pall
God's purest law of love and kindness.
Smiles and joy and flowers for thee.
Your angel son has risen higher.
He is glad eternity,
____ [a line was missing here] ______
This is but thy worn out prison.
We will gently put away
what upon thy earthly mission
served him for a little day.
Useless now to serve his condition, aye endure,
we would never seek to hold him,
fitted in his spirit pure,
for the wonders that enfold them.
This same way you all must go.
Just a little farther only
and the waters solemn flow
will not seem one-half so lonely.
Since their hand will reach across,
taking yours to aid the landing,
and teaching all the gain and loss
to your darkened understanding.
So they bring out smiles and flowers
from whose fragrance you can borrow
promise of those radiant bowers.
Out beyond the reach of sorrow
there is no cause to weep for him,
for your angel son has higher risen;
His is glad eternity
and yours the clouded earthly prison.
But they keep for thee a place
and when free from earthly duty
will meet you with their angel face
to welcome you to that holy land
then you will hear their voices
once more repeating the story,
enter at the open door
where you pass to realms of glory.
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