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The Wind

Letitia Elizabeth Landon 1802 (Chelsea) – 1838 (Cape Coast)

The Wind has a language, I would I could learn:
Sometimes 'tis soothing, and sometimes 'tis stern,
—Sometimes it comes like a low sweet song,
And all things grow calm, as the sound floats along,
And the forest is lull'd by the dreamy strain,
And slumber sinks down on the wandering main,
And its crystal arms are folded in rest,
And the tall ship sleeps on its heaving breast.

Sometimes when Autumn grows yellow and sear,
And the sad clouds weep for the dying year,
It comes like a wizard, and mutters its spell,
—I would that the magical tones I might tell—
And it beckons the leaves with its viewless hand,
And they leap from the branches at its command,
And follow its footsteps with wheeling feet,
Like fairies that dance in the moonlight sweet.

Sometimes it comes in the wintry night,
And I hear the flap of its pinions of might,
And I see the flash of its withering eye,
As it looks from the thunder-cloud sailing on high,
And pauses to gather its fearful breath,
And lifts up its voice, like the angel of death,—
And the billows leap up when the summons they hear,
And the ship flies away as if winged with fear,
And the uncouth creatures that dwell in the deep,
Start up at the sound from their floating sleep,
And career through the waters, like clouds through the night,
To share in the tumult their joy and delight,—
And when the moon rises, the ship is no more,
Its joys and its sorrows are vanish'd and o’er,
And the fierce storm that slew it, has faded away,
Like the dark dream that flies from the light of the day!
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Submitted by Madeleine Quinn on February 09, 2020

1:27 min read

Letitia Elizabeth Landon

Letitia Elizabeth Landon was an English poet. Born 14th August 1802 at 25 Hans Place, Chelsea, she lived through the most productive period of her life nearby, at No.22. A precocious child with a natural gift for poetry, she was driven by the financial needs of her family to become a professional writer and thus a target for malicious gossip (although her three children by William Jerdan were successfully hidden from the public). In 1838, she married George Maclean, governor of Cape Coast Castle on the Gold Coast, whence she travelled, only to die a few months later (15th October) of a fatal heart condition. Behind her post-Romantic style of sentimentality lie preoccupations with art, decay and loss that give her poetry its characteristic intensity and in this vein she attempted to reinterpret some of the great male texts from a woman’s perspective. Her originality rapidly led to her being one of the most read authors of her day and her influence, commencing with Tennyson in England and Poe in America, was long-lasting. However, Victorian attitudes led to her poetry being misrepresented and she became excluded from the canon of English literature, where she belongs. more…

All Letitia Elizabeth Landon poems | Letitia Elizabeth Landon Books

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1 Comment

  • Peter Bolton
    This poem was published in The New Monthly Magazine under the signature O but was later, rightly ot wrongly, attributed to Miss Landon
    LikeReplyReport1 year ago


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"The Wind" Poetry.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2022. Web. 26 Jan. 2022. <https://www.poetry.com/poem/52415/the-wind>.

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Repeated use of words for effect and emphasis is called ________.
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