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Page:The Works of Lord Byron (ed. Coleridge, Prothero) - Volume 4.djvu/89

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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,[1]
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.[2]


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,[3]
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.[4]


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,[5]

For much I view which I could most desire,
  1. For to all such may change of soul refer.—[MS.]
  2. Have hardened me to this—but I can see
    Things which I still can love—but none like thee.—[MS. erased.]

  3. Before I had to study far more useless books.—[MS. erased.]
    Ere my young mind was fettered down to books.
  4. Some living things ——.—[MS.]
  5. [Compare—

    "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.]