Friday, July 29, 2011

Poetry Friday -- Solitude

The Prelude
by William Wordsworth

(An excerpt from Book IV, "Summer Vacation," Lines 354-370)

When from our better selves we have too long
Been parted by the hurrying world, and droop,
Sick of its business, of its pleasures tired,
How gracious, how benign, is Solitude;
How potent a mere image of her sway;
Most potent when impressed upon the mind
With an appropriate human centre—hermit,
Deep in the bosom of the wilderness;
Votary (in vast cathedral, where no foot
Is treading, where no other face is seen)
Kneeling at prayers; or watchman on the top
Of lighthouse, beaten by Atlantic waves;
Or as the soul of that great Power is met
Sometimes embodied on a public road,
When, for the night deserted, it assumes
A character of quiet more profound
Than pathless wastes.

Ahh, Solitude. For me, it is those cool, quiet hours after the cat demands food, but before the rest of the house wakes up, that restore me. When do you snatch a few moments all to yourself?

Today, you could use a bit of your Solitude to peruse the Poetry Friday roundup at Kate's blog, Book Aunt!


  1. Oh yes! I am up an hour or more before the boys so I can get my quiet time in. Delicious with coffee! Thanks for posting this lovely poem.

  2. Solitude is important to help us tackle our days. Thanks for sharing this lovely piece.

  3. Solitude is ESSENTIAL. I snatch it as often as possible. Mornings are especially fertile for me personally, but I'm not all that picky. :) Thanks for sharing this poem.

  4. "Deep in the bosom of the wilderness" -- I love those moments when we feel nurtured by nature.

  5. The need, the necessity for solitude is why I go to the office long before most arrive each day...thanks for sharing this beautiful poem, it's into my "keeper" file!

  6. Truly a beautiful poem - I find solitude when I am running, the wind in my face, blowing my hair. thank you for sharing wordsworth - reminded me of how much I enjoy his poetry. Food for the soul indeed.

  7. Clearly I have to get over my long-held teenage resistance to the Romantics (poets, not the band)--I found that this poem spoke to me much more directly than I expected. Thanks to you and t
    to William--my favorite is that "sometimes embodied on a public road..."

    Isn't it interesting how many of us are early birds in search of the worm of solitude, "after the cat demands food, before the rest of the house wakes up"?


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