Rossetti Archive Textual Transcription

Document Title: Ballads and Sonnets (1881), proof Signature Y (Delaware Museum, three printer's copies)
Author: Dante Gabriel Rossetti
Date of publication: 1881 May 10

The full Rossetti Archive record for this transcribed document is available.

Image of page [1] page: [1]
Manuscript Addition: 27
Added Text8
Editorial Description: DGR's numeration at upper right.
Oliver Madox Brown.

Born 1855; Died 1874.

  • UPON the landscape of his coming life
  • A youth high-gifted gazed, and found it fair:
  • The heights of work, the floods of praise, were there.
  • What friendships, what desires, what love, what wife?—
  • All things to come. The fanned springtide was rife
  • With imminent solstice; and the ardent air
  • Had summer sweets and autumn fires to bear;—
  • Heart's ease full-pulsed with perfect strength for strife.
  • A mist has risen: we see the youth no more:
  • 10 Does he see on and strive on? And may we
  • Late-tottering worldworn hence, find his to be
  • The young strong hand which helps us up that shore?
  • Or, echoing the No More with Nevermore,
  • Must Night be ours and his? We hope: and he?
By D. G. Rossetti
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Manuscript Addition: 39/18
Added Text16
Editorial Description: DGR's numeration at upper right.
  • HOW large that thrush looks on the bare thorn-tree!
  • A swarm of such, three little months ago,
  • Had hidden in the leaves and let none know
  • Save by the outburst of their minstrelsy.
  • A white flake here and there—a snow-lily
  • Of last night's frost—our naked flower-beds hold;
  • And for a rose-flower on the darkling mould
  • The hungry redbreast gleams. No bloom, no bee.
  • The current shudders to its ice-bound sedge:
  • 10 Nipped in their bath, the stark reeds one by one
  • Flash each its clinging diamond in the sun:
  • 'Neath winds which for this Winter's sovereign pledge
  • Shall curb great king-masts to the ocean's edge
  • And leave memorial forest-king's o'erthrown.
Image of page [3] page: [3]
Note: DGR's manuscript revision for lines 3-4 is scripted above the printed sonnet.
Manuscript Addition: 40/19
Added Text17
Editorial Description: DGR's numeration at upper right.
  • SOFT-LITTERED is the new-year's lambing-fold,
  • And in the hollowed haystack at its side
  • The shepherd lies o'nights now, wakeful-eyed
  • Added TextThe heedful shepherd now will fold
  • At the ewes' travailing call through the dark cold.
  • Added TextWhile the ewes' travailing calls/travailing ewes are heard through the dark clear cold.
  • The young rooks cheep 'mid the thick caw o'the old:
  • And near unpeopled stream-sides, on the ground,
  • By her spring-cry the moorhen's nest is found,
  • Where the drained flood-lands flaunt their marigold.
  • Chill are the gusts to which the pastures cower,
  • 10 And chill the current where the young reeds stand
  • As green and close as the young wheat on land:
  • Yet here the cuckoo and the cuckoo-flower
  • Plight to the heart Spring's perfect imminent hour
  • Whose breath shall soothe you like your dear one's hand.
By D. G. Rossetti
Electronic Archive Edition: 1