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 As I look back upon my life now I realize clearly that of all the members of our family subsequent to my mother’s death, the only one who, without quite understanding me, still sympathized with my intellectual and point of view—and that most helpfully and at times practically—was my brother Paul. Despite the fact that all my other brothers were much better able intellectually than he to appreciate the kind of thing I was tending toward mentally, his was the sympathy that me up. I do not think he understood, even in later years (long after I had written Sister Carrie, for instance), what I was driving at. His world was that of the popular song, the middle-class actor or , the middle-class comedy, and such humorous esthetes of the writing world as Bill Nye, V. Nasby, and the authors of the Spoopendyke Papers and Samantha at Saratoga. As far as I could make out—and I say this in no lofty, spirit—he was full of simple middle-class romance, middle-class humor, middle-class tenderness, and middle-class grossness—all of which I am very free to say I admire. After all, we cannot all be artists, statesmen, generals, thieves or financiers. Some of us, the large majority, have to be just plain everyday middle-class, and a very comfortable state it is under any decent form of government.  
But there is so very much more to be said of him, things which lift him in my memory to a height far more appealing and important than hundreds of greater and surer fame. For my brother was a humorist of so tender and delicate a mold that to speak of him as a middle-class artist or middle-class thinker and composer, would be to do him a gross and miss the entire significance and flavor of his being. His tenderness and sympathy, a very human of the weakness and errors as well as the and of most of us, was his most outstanding and engaging quality and gave him a very definite force and charm. Admitting that he had an intense, possibly an fondness for women (I have never been able to discover just where the dividing line is to be in such matters), a , childish, horse-play sense of humor at times, still he had other qualities that were adorable. That sunny , that vigorous, body and nimble mind, those smiling sweet blue eyes, that air of gayety and that was with him nearly all the time, even at the most trying times! Life seemed to bubble in him. Hope sprang upward like a fountain. You felt in him a capacity to do (in his limited field), an ability to achieve, whether he was succeeding at the moment or not. Never having the least power to interpret anything in a high musical way, still he was always full of music of a tender, sometimes sad, sometimes gay kind, the ballad-maker of a nation. For myself, I was always fascinated by this skill of his, the lovable art that attempts to interpret sorrow and pleasure in terms of song, however . And on the stage, how, in a crude way, by mere smile and gesture, he could make an audience laugh! I have seen houses crowded to the ceiling with middle- or lower-class people, shop girls and boys, factory hands and the like, who tittered continuously at his every move. He seemed to radiate a kind of comforting sunshine and humor without a sharp edge or sting (satire was beyond him), a kind of wilding , your true clown in cap and bells, which caused even my soul to chortle by the hour. Already he was a composer of a certain type of melodramatic and tearful yet land-sweeping songs (The Letter That Never Came, The Pardon Came Too Late, I Believe It for My Mother Told Me So, The Bowery). (Let those who wish to know him better read of him in Twelve Men: My Brother Paul.)
Well, this was my brother Paul, the same whom I have described as stout, gross, sensual, and all of these qualities went han............
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