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Poems Chiefly from Manuscript

John Clare

Top 10 Best Quotes

“O words are poor receipts for what time hath stole away”

“I hid my love when young till I Couldn't bear the buzzing of a fly; I hid my life to my despite Till I could not bear to look at light: I dare not gaze upon her face But left her memory in each place; Where'er I saw a wild flower lie I kissed and bade my love good-bye.”

“Crowded places, I shunned them as noises too rude And fled to the silence of sweet solitude.”

“Invitation to Eternity Say, wilt thou go with me, sweet maid, Say, maiden, wilt thou go with me Through the valley-depths of shade, Of bright and dark obscurity; Where the path has lost its way, Where the sun forgets the day, Where there's nor light nor life to see, Sweet maiden, wilt thou go with me? Where stones will turn to flooding streams, Where plains will rise like ocean's waves, Where life will fade like visioned dreams And darkness darken into caves, Say, maiden, wilt thou go with me Through this sad non-identity Where parents live and are forgot, And sisters live and know us not? Say, maiden, wilt thou go with me In this strange death of life to be, To live in death and be the same, Without this life or home or name, At once to be and not to be— That was and is not—yet to see Things pass like shadows, and the sky Above, below, around us lie? The land of shadows wilt thou trace, Nor look nor know each other's face; The present marred with reason gone, And past and present both as one? Say, maiden, can thy life be led To join the living and the dead? Then trace thy footsteps on with me: We are wed to one eternity.”

“My illness was love, though I knew not the smart, But the beauty of love was the blood of my heart.”

“Hill tops like hot iron glitter bright in the sun, And the rivers we're eying burn to gold as they run; Burning hot is the ground, liquid gold is the air; Whoever looks round sees Eternity there.”

“First Love I ne’er was struck before that hour With love so sudden and so sweet, Her face it bloomed like a sweet flower And stole my heart away complete. My face turned pale as deadly pale, My legs refused to walk away, And when she looked, what could I ail? My life and all seemed turned to clay. And then my blood rushed to my face And took my eyesight quite away, The trees and bushes round the place Seemed midnight at noonday. I could not see a single thing, Words from my eyes did start— They spoke as chords do from the string, And blood burnt round my heart. Are flowers the winter’s choice? Is love’s bed always snow? She seemed to hear my silent voice, Not love's appeals to know. I never saw so sweet a face As that I stood before. My heart has left its dwelling-place And can return no more.”

“In crime and enmity they lie Who sin and tell us love can die, Who say to us in slander's breath That love belongs to sin and death.”

“O I never thought that joys would run away from boys, Or that boys would change their minds and forsake such summer joys; But alack I never dreamed that the world had other toys”

“I hate the very noise of troublous man Who did and does me all the harm he can. Free from the world I would a prisoner be And my own shadow all my company.”

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Book Keywords:

nature, childhood, time, love, words, death, eternity, sin, poetry, noise, solitude

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