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Edmund Clarence Stedman, ed. (1833–1908). A Victorian Anthology, 1837–1895. 1895.

Richard Henry Horne 1802–84

Solitude and the Lily



I BEND above the moving stream,

And see myself in my own dream,—

Heaven passing, while I do not pass.

Something divine pertains to me,

Or I to it;—reality

Escapes me on this liquid glass.


The changeful clouds that float or poise on high,

Emblem earth’s night and day of history:

Renew’d for ever, evermore to die.

Thy life-dream is thy fleeting loveliness;

But mine is concentrated consciousness,

A life apart from pleasure or distress.

The grandeur of the Whole

Absorbs my soul,

While my caves sigh o’er human littleness.


Ah, Solitude,

Of marble Silence fit abode!

I do prefer my fading face,

My loss of loveliness and grace,

With cloud-dreams ever in my view;

Also the hope that other eyes

May share my rapture in the skies,

And, if illusion, feel it true.