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Sonnet LXXVIII. Snowdrops

Charlotte Smith 1749 (London) – 1806 (Tilford, Surrey)



WAN Heralds of the sun and summer gale!
That seem just fallen from infant Zephyrs' wing;
Not now, as once, with heart revived I hail
Your modest buds, that for the brow of Spring
Form the first simple garland--Now no more
Escaping for a moment all my cares,
Shall I, with pensive, silent, step explore
The woods yet leafless; where to chilling airs
Your green and pencil'd blossoms, trembling, wave.
Ah! ye soft, transient, children of the ground,
More fair was she on whose untimely grave
Flow my unceasing tears! Their varied round
The Seasons go; while I through all repine:
For fix'd regret, and hopeless grief are mine.

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Submitted on May 13, 2011

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Charlotte Smith

Charlotte Turner Smith was an English Romantic poet and novelist. She initiated a revival of the English sonnet, helped establish the conventions of Gothic fiction, and wrote political novels of sensibility. A successful writer, she published ten novels, three books of poetry, four children's books, and other assorted works over the course of her career. She saw herself as a poet first and foremost, poetry at that period being considered the most exalted form of literature. Scholars now credit her with transforming the sonnet into an expression of woeful sentiment. more…

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