Verse > Anthologies > > Arthur Quiller-Couch, ed. > The Oxford Book of Victorian Verse
Arthur Quiller-Couch, comp.  The Oxford Book of Victorian Verse.  1922.
Stanzas: ‘Often rebuked, yet always back returning’
By Emily Brontë (1818–1848)
OFTEN rebuked, yet always back returning
  To those first feelings that were born with me,
And leaving busy chase of wealth and learning
  For idle dreams of things which cannot be:
To-day I will seek not the shadowy region;        5
  Its unsustaining vastness waxes drear;
And visions rising, legion after legion,
  Bring the unreal world too strangely near.
I’ll walk, but not in old heroic traces,
  And not in paths of high morality,        10
And not among the half-distinguish’d faces,
  The clouded forms of long-past history.
I’ll walk when my own nature would be leading:
  It vexes me to choose another guide:
Where the grey flocks in ferny glens are feeding,        15
  Where the wild wind blows on the mountain side.

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