THE EDUCATION OF NATURE.
| Three years she grew in sun and shower;
Then Nature said, "A lovelier flower
On earth was never sown;
This child I to myself will take;
She shall be mine, and I will make
A lady of my own.
"Myself will to my darling be
Both law and impulse: and with me
The girl, in rock and plain,
In earth and heaven, in glade and bower
Shall feel an overseeing power
To kindle or restrain.
"She shall be sportive as the fawn
That wild with glee across the lawn
Or up the mountain springs;
And her's shall be the breathing balm,
And her's the silence and the calm
Of mute insensate things.
"The floating clouds their state shall lend
To her; for her the willow bend;
Nor shall she fail to see
E'en in the motions of the storm
Grace that shall mould the maiden's form
By silent sympathy.
"The stars of midnight shall be dear
To her; and she shall lean her ear
In many a secret place
Where rivulets dance their wayward round,
And beauty born of murmuring sound
Shall pass into her face.
"And vital feelings of delight
Shall rear her form to stately height,
Her virgin bosom swell;
Such thoughts to Lucy I will give
While she and I together live
Here in this happy dell."
Thus Nature spake--The work was done--
How soon my Lucy's race was run!
She died, and left to me
This heath, this calm and quiet scene;
The memory of what has been,
And never more will be.
|W. WORDSWORTH., THE GOLDEN TREASURY Of the best Songs and Lyrical Pieces In the English Language Selected by Francis Turner Palgrave
||Notes: The Lucy poems are a series of five poems composed by the English Romantic poet William Wordsworth (17701850) between 1798 and 1801 while the poet lived in Germany. Although they individually deal with a variety of themes, as a series they focus on the poet's longing for the company of his friend Coleridge, who had stayed in England, and on his increasing impatience with his sister Dorothy, who had travelled with him abroad. Wordsworth channeled his frustrations into an examination of unrequited love for the idealised character of Lucy, an English girl who has died young. The idea of her death weighs heavily on the poet throughout the series, imbuing it with a melancholic, elegiac tone. Whether Lucy was based on a real woman or was a figment of the poet's imagination has long been a matter of debate. Wordsworth never revealed the details of her origin or identity. Some scholars speculate that Lucy is based on his sister Dorothy, while others see her as a fictitious or hybrid character. Most agree that she is a literary device upon whom he could project, meditate and reflect.