Wlliam Gilmore Simms
The Simms Review (Vol 13: No 2) >> A New Simms Obituary—Charleston News, 13 June 1870 >> Page 22

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Page 22

Obituary | 1870-06-13
Transcription claim to be, by any means, exponents of his pow-
ers and characteristics as a poet. * *
There are abundant evidences throughout the
writings of Mr. Simms, and perhaps in none more
than in his poems, of power to accomplish vastly
more than he has performed. Not that the exist-
ing performances are crude, or the offspring a
certain immaturity of genius,; but they are such
as could only have emanated from the truest geni-
us, while they are. not the highest expression of
the powers so evidently shining through them,
and which alone could have been adequate .to
their production. 'Atalantis' must be placed in
the very highest rank of the class of poems to
which it belongs; but it is not the loftiest and
grandest 'order of all poetry, while the genius
which was capable of producing it, must, of ne-
cessity, be able to touch the very summit of poet!
cal excellency."

Among the poetical works of Mr. Simms are
many rare gems of thought and diction, but it
cannot be said that his poems are famlliar in
the mouths of the people. The very copious-
ness of illustration which sprung from the
fertility of his fancy, was likely to weary the
general reader, who tires of any, long-contin-
ued demand'upon his attention or discriminat-
ing judgment. And the ease and_ fluency with,
which he wrote tempted him to write, over
much. Those who knew him best knew that
he could do more than he had ever done. They
looked : forward with confidence to the day,
when his name--borne on ' the wings of a
mighty, 'Epic --might be measured in busy
Europe as in his native Carolina. But
time and circumstance were wanting; That-
astonishing industry and activity which re-
mained' with him to the end gave him no re-
pose, and when he appeared in public for the
last time, the flow of thought and fancy was
as ripe and fresh as when he first stepped into
literary life. To the buoyancy of the boy was