A spirit of slight patience;—not in vain,
Even for its own sake, do we purchase Pain.
Perhaps the workings of defiance stir
Within me—or, peihaps, a cold despair
Brought on when ills habitually recur,—
Perhaps a kinder clime, or purer air,
(For even to this may change of soul refer,
And with light armour we may learn to bear,)
Have taught me a strange quiet, which was not
The chief companion of a calmer lot.
I feel almost at times as I have felt
In happy childhood; trees, and flowers, and brooks,
Which do remember me of where I dwelt,
Ere my young mind was sacrificed to books,
Come as of yore upon me, and can melt
My heart with recognition of their looks;
And even at moments I could think I see
Some living thing to love—but none like thee.
Here are the Alpine landscapes which create
A fund for contemplation;—to admire
Is a brief feeling of a trivial date;
But something worthier do such scenes inspire:
Here to be lonely is not desolate,
- For to all such may change of soul refer.—[MS.]
Have hardened me to this—but I can see
Things which I still can love—but none like thee.—[MS. erased.]
Before I had to study far more useless books.—[MS. erased.]
Ere my young mind was fettered down to books.
- Some living things ——.—[MS.]
"Then stirs the feeling infinite, so felt
In solitude, when we are least alone."
Childe Harold, Canto III. stanza xc. lines 1, 2,
Poetical Works, 1899, ii. 272.]