A Voyage to the Planet of Tiny Poets

Ella Grace, “A Visit to Another World Described,” Planets and People (Chicago), November 1895: 375-376.

It has been my good fortune to see and know other worlds and their inhabitants, and I wish in this paper to describe a world and its people that has charmed me much. I think of it as a little world, because the scenery and the inhabitants are on a smaller scale than ours, but I believe that the world itself is much larger. The gently undulating hills with small valleys between seem just suited to the little people, who average four feet in height, but are finely formed and far from dwarfish looking. They live in what we would think very small houses, but they are exquisitely furnished, and fully as luxurious as our own.

As they are spiritual beings—as were the people of this world when first created—they can visit other worlds, and often come here to get the benefit of our ideas in science, art and literature. So I found miniature copies of our sewing machines, pianos and other modern inventions, and all our best authors and artists held in high esteem. I could only find one thing in which our Liliputian neighbors were in advance of ourselves, and that was in the employment of time. To show you how far they surpass us in that, and how much more valuable life becomes under such a system, I will describe a Liliputian day.

We rose early in the morning in time to catch the first favors of the opening day, and my host went to the river near by—we would call it a creek—and soon returned with several fine fish. These were duly broiled, and served with lettuce and baked potatoes. Our repast began, however, with fresh strawberries served on their own leaves, and dipped or eaten in sugar. It wound up with dainty melons in season here, with strawberries.

After breakfast the little gem of a house was quickly put in order, and we strolled down to the river where we found a number of boats and all, or nearly all, the inhabitants of the town. We then rowed across to an island where there was a large building containing rooms for study, an art gallery, library, and lecture hall. My host and hostess and myself went into a little room over the door, of which was a card with “Gray’s Elegy” printed on it. Here a young lady first read the poem in a most expressive and delightful way, and then we discussed the beauty of words and sentences, the general style and finish, and its depth of thought. Then we asked her to read the poem again, and again we discussed it. When we came out of the little room I noticed the cards on other doors, “Keat’s Sonnets,” Longfellow, Lowell and other familiar names, and I felt that I should like to spend a morning in every room. In the larger room we sat and talked, or walked round and looked at pictures, while some sat at little tables busy with their notes of the morning’s work. After awhile a young man informed us that he could laugh like Tuefelsdroch, and the imitation was so good that the whole assembly laughed until they could laugh no longer. Then we wandered over the beautiful grounds and made an ample lunch on fruits and nuts. Then we returned to the town, and the business of the day commenced. The men went to their banks and stores and warehouses, and the women sewed and embroidered, visited and prepared the evening meal.

After supper the whole town went riding in the cunningest little carriages drawn by the cutest little ponies. The latter seemed made to be petted, so docile and affectionate were they, and to me they seemed the most interesting and delightful animals that I ever came across. Everything about the world pleased and interested me, and I wish that I could convey to others something of the pleasant impression these little people and their surroundings made upon me.

You who go out in the astral certainly ought to visit this charming world, and it is probable that the astronomers can tell just where to find it. The climate is equable and delightful all the year round. This reminds me that they are quite carried away with our northern latitudes, by way of contrast, and I think go farther north than we do. Indeed, I should not be surprised to have one of them tell me that he had hung his hat on our north pole! Adieu, till the next time.



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