The Spirit of the Nation/Literary Leisure




"Around me I behold
The mighty minds of old;
My never-failing friends are they,
With whom I converse day by day."


Let my life pass in healthful, happy ease,
The world and all its schemes shut out my door;
Rich in a competence and nothing more,
Saving the student's wealth—"Apollo's fees"—
Long rows of goodly volumes, to appease
My early love and quenchless thirst of lore.
No Want to urge me on the path of Gain—
No Hope to lure me in Ambition's track;
Struggles and strife, and all their savage train,
Still from my tranquil dwelling driven back;
My only triumphs—if such toys I lack—
Some subtle nut of science burst in twain,
Or knot unravell'd. Thus be't mine to live,
And feel life pass like a long summer eve.