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The Romantic Movement

Christina Georgina Rossetti

 


Christina Rossetti ranks with Emily Jane Bronte as the best female British poets of the 19th century.  A Romantic whose verse rings of melancholy and lost love, she was the only female member of the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood, whose members also included her brothers, Dante Gabriel and William Michael.  Her book of verse entitled Goblin Market is a delight, and includes the following selection.  She never married, having twice turned down marriage proposals for religious reasons, decisions which coloured much of her verse with a bittersweet beauty seldom seen elsewhere.


Another Spring

 

By Christina Georgina Rossetti (1830 ?1894)

 

If I might see another Spring

Id not plant summer flowers and wait:

Id have my crocuses at once,

My leafless pink mezereons,

My chill-veined snowdrops, choicer yet

My white or azure violet,

Leaf-nested primrose; anything

To blow at once not late.

 

If I might see another Spring

Id listen to the daylight birds

That build their nests and pair and sing,

Nor wait for mateless nightingale;

Id listen to the lusty herds,

The ewes with lambs as white as snow,

Id find out music in the hail

And all the winds that blow.

 

If I might see another Spring

Oh stinging comment on my past

That all my past results in if?-----

If I might see another Spring

Id laugh to-day, to-day is brief;

I would not wait for anything:

Id use to-day that cannot last,

Be glad to-day and sing.


1862