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SUMMER AND WINTER.
It was a bright and cheerful afternoon,
A PORTAL as of shadowy adamant
Stands yawning on the highway of the life
Around it rages an unceasing strife
The gap of some cleft mountain, lifted high
And many passed it by with careless tread,
Not knowing that a shadowy [ ] Tracks every traveller even to where the dead
Wait peacefully for their companion new; But others, by more curious humour led,
Pause to examine,—these are very few, And they learn little there, except to know That shadows follow them where'er they go.
YE hasten to the dead! What seek ye there,
death? O heart, and mind, and thoughts! What thing do you Hope to inherit in the grave below?
LINES TO A REVIEWER.
Alas! good friend, what profit can you see
what you cannot satiate !
NOTE ON THE POEMS OF 1820.
BY THE EDITOR,
We spent the latter part of the year 1819 in Florence, where Shelley passed several hours daily in the Gallery, and made various notes on its ancient works of art. His thoughts were a good deal taken up also by the project of a steam-boat, undertaken by a friend, an engineer, to ply between Leghorn and Marseilles, for which he supplied a sum of money. This was a sort of plan to delight Shelley, and he was greatly disappointed when it was thrown aside.
There was something in Florence that disagreed excessively with his health, and he suffered far more pain than usual ; so much so that we left it sooner than we intended, and removed to Pisa, where we had some friends, and, above all, where we could consult the celebrated Vaccà, as to the cause of Shelley's sufferings. He, like every other medical man, could only guess at that, and gave little hope of immediate relief; he enjoined him to abstain from all physicians and medicine, and to leave his complaint to nature. As he had vainly consulted medical men of the highest repute in England, he was easily persuaded to adopt this advice. Pain and illhealth followed him to the end, but the residence at Pisa
agreed with him better than any other, and there in consequence we remained.
In the spring we spent a week or two near Leghorn, borrowing the house of some friends, who were absent on a journey to England. It was on a beautiful summer evening, while wandering among the lanes, whose myrtle hedges were the bowers of the fire-flies, that we heard the carolling of the sky-lark, which inspired one of the most beautiful of his poems. He addressed the letter to Mrs. Gisborne from this house, which was hers ; he had made his study of the workshop of her son, who was an engineer. Mrs. Gisborne had been a friend of my father in her younger days. She was a lady of great accomplishments, and charming from her frank and affectionate nature. She had the most intense love of knowledge, a delicate and trembling sensibility, and preserved freshness of mind, after a life of considerable adversity. As a favourite friend of my father we had sought her with eagerness, and the most open and cordial friendship was established between us.
We spent the summer at the baths of San Giuliano, four miles from Pisa. These baths were of great use to Shelley in soothing his nervous irritability. We made several excursions in the neighbourhood. The country around is fertile ; and diversified and rendered picturesque by ranges of near hills and more distant mountains. The peasantry are a handsome, intelligent race, and there was a gladsome sunny heaven spread over us, that rendered home and every scene we visited cheerful and bright. During some of the hottest days of August, Shelley made a solitary journey on foot to the summit of Monte San Pelegrino—a mountain of some height, on the top of which there is a chapel, the object, during certain days