lodge to tramp over hills and through canyons, exploring the apparently inaccessible, viewing and absorbing the wondrous beauty of woodland fastnesses, airy heights, and rugged cliffs. Feeling the very pulse of nature, his poems were the embodiment of all he had seen and felt, delighting the reader with their subtle charm and graceful imagery, which were peculiarly the author's own.
   Leaving his favorite retreat and last abode, for it here in 1899 that the poet breathed his last, a short walk around the bend of the hill brought us to another spot, sacred to the memory of the poet. This is the O'Connell monument which, as the inscription tells us, was erected by his sorrowing friends. The monument is in the form of a granite seat, some fifteen feet in length, fashioned in a graceful, curving crescent. Placed on the bank above the roadway, it is surrounded by great masses of bright-colored flowers, and approached by a few stone steps.



   The floor is of small, inlaid stones, in the center of which a three-leaf Shamrock proclaims the nationality of the poet.
   Besides the name he made for himself, O'Connell came of illustrious ancestors, being the son of a distinguished lawyer,



Charles O'Connell, and grand-nephew of the great Irish patriot, Daniel O'Connell.
   On the back of the seat are inscribed these lines, written by the poet but ten days before his fatal illness, and prophetic of the long journey he was so soon to take, where, away from the cares and turmoil of this world, his soul could solve its remaining problems:



I have a Castle of Silence, flanked by a lofty keep,
And across the drawbridge lieth the lovely chamber of sleep;
Its walls are draped in legends woven in threads of gold.
Legends beloved in dreamland, in the tranquil days of old.

Here lies the Princess sleeping in the palace, solemn and still,
And knight and countess slumber; and even the noisy rill
That flowed by the ancient tower. has passed on its way to the sea,
And the deer are asleep in the forest, and the birds are asleep in the tree.

And I in my Castle of Silence, in my chamber of sleep, lie down.
Like the far-off murmur of forests come the turbulent echoes of town.
And the wrangling tongues about me have now no power to keep
My soul from the solace exceeding the blessed Nirvana of sleep.

Lower the portcullis softly, sentries, placed on the wall;
Let shadows of quiet and silence on all my palace fall;
Softly draw the curtains.... Let the world labor and weep
My soul is safe environed by the walls of my chamber of sleep.



   Turning from these verses to rest on the granite seat, we were confronted with a view of surpassing loveliness. Our attention had been so engrossed in examining this monument to genius that, until then, we had failed to perceive the commanding situation it held.
   Below us stretched the peaceful waters of the Bay; on the left Angel Island and the Berkeley hills, with old Diablo dimly seen in the distance; in front, Alcatraz with its warlike aspect lay basking in the sun; while to the right the City, with its many hills and pall of smoke, could be plainly discerned. Truly a fitting spot for this memorial to genius.
   Another attractive feature of Sausalito, besides its superb marine view, is its abundance of flowers. These not only grow in thick profusion in the quaint hillside gardens, but are planted beside the roadways, covering many an erstwhile bare and unsightly bank with trailing vines, gay nasturtiums and bright geraniums. There is something in the spirit of this hillside gardening, this planting of sweet blossoms for the public at large, that is very appealing in these days of monopolistic greed, when everything that is worth while has a fence around it. Thus it is refreshing to find a little spot in this



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©1999, 2000, 2001 for MARDOS Collection, T&C Miller