Thursday, January 11, 2018

Wandering spirit

I've dreamt in my life dreams that have stayed with me ever after, and changed my ideas; they've gone through and through me, like wine through water, and altered the colour of my mind.
~spoken by Catherine Earnshaw, Emily Brontë's Wuthering Heights

Emily Brontë's diary paper for June 26, 1837,
showing herself and Anne working at the dining room table

In this poem, is Brontë talking about the creative act? Prayer? Meditation? Dreams? It reminds me a bit of Emily Dickinson. I get the urge to capitalize the last two words.

I'm Happiest When Most Away
by Emily Brontë

I'm happiest when most away
I can bear my soul from its home of clay
On a windy night when the moon is bright
And the eye can wander through worlds of light—

When I am not and none beside—
Nor earth nor sea nor cloudless sky—
But only spirit wandering wide
Through infinite immensity.


Bookseed Studio has the Poetry Friday round-up. Thanks, Jan!


Jane @ said...

Beautiful. I feel this way when I am immersed in music, freeing my soul from its clay jar. What a powerful experience.

Laura Shovan said...

Your post reminds me of reading Catherine Reef's wonderful YA biography of the Brontes: The Bronte Sisters. They had so much isolated time to develop their creativity.

Michelle Kogan said...

Her poem could be reflections on meditation or dreams–to me they are similar states. It sure does resemble Emily Dickinson in the rhythm. I love the page from her notebook with the sketch. A moving poem, thanks for sharing all here Tabatha!

Sally Murphy said...

Lovely. I adore the last two words"infinite immensity". There is a definite feel of ED in it.

Kay said...

This is lovely. Whether prayer or meditation or dreams or writing or getting lost in music, it is a needed solace and chance to renew.

Matt Forrest Esenwine said...

Knowing how cerebral the Bronte sisters were, I'm sure Emily is tying all those things (dreams, creativity, meditation, etc,) together in this one small poem. Thanks for sharing!

Joyce Ray said...

I love this post, Tabatha! Last spring I walked through the Bronte parsonage, saw that dining table where the sisters worked and soaked up the landscape views they saw. I remember the PBS drama, "To Walk Invisible," about their lives and work. Emily was portrayed as one who loved to walk the moor, sit and absorb the vastness of the then undisturbed countryside and wide open sky. I think during these times she bore her soul "from its home of clay." I vowed to explore her poetry, and you have shared a lovely one to start with. She does remind me of Emily Dickinson here.

Myra Garces Bacsal said...

I understand what you mean now by capitalizing the last two words - Infinite Immensity - they are indeed all-encompassing. It's been so long since I've read the Brontes or Jane Austen - hopefully this year, I get to revisit the classics. :) Happy New Year, Tabatha!

Linda B said...

Sometimes it's fun to come late and read all the comments, too, Tabatha, like Joyce Ray actually being there and seeing the Bronte's table. It is a lovely poem, restful and rather hopeful, too. Thank you. The sketch is wonderful to see.

Mitchell Linda said...

Oh, you mind reader you! This poem is perfect for my olw collection of 2018. My olw is play. And, when I'm immersed in play I feel like this. You've sparked an idea. Thank you!

Mary Lee said...

Infinite Immensity. Sounds like something from a Robert Frost poem!

Violet Nesdoly said...

What a wonderful poem to read and immerse oneself in on a January day! I love the sketch too. It makes me long for a simpler time (or maybe I could just simplify my life).

Heidi Mordhorst said...

As one who has begun learning Transcendental Meditation, I think maybe Emily found her way to the "restful alertness" of the 4th state of consciousness. Isn't it grand how we all see what we need to in a skillful poem?

Robyn Hood Black said...

Love this, Tabatha - thank you for sharing, the sketch too. (& I also loved reading Joyce's account of seeing the very table!)
Happy imagining this year.

Keri said...

A magical pairing!Like Joyce I was struck by the portrayal of Emily in the movie "To Walk Invisible." The actress did a wonderful job of portraying Emily's depth and turbulence. Both of these poems are striking!