My latest 'gleanings'...

Another Monday and Tuesday this week in the Peterborough Archive, and as always it seems, came up with quite a few Clare poems I did not recognise.  Here is just one, written in pencil, an alternative version of "Pleasures of Spring" (lines 283-292).  I must admit I do think the alternatives in these lines are somewhat more 'Clarean'!?

Forth walks the man of taste among the woods
& fields & where small channels run their floods
Loud laughing on their errands watering flowers
& down the narrow lanes he walks for hours
All carpeted anew with young swathes [of] grass
So soft that birds hear not the feet that pass
Close by their nests he peeps the leaves among
& marks with rapture how they brood their young
He drops beneath the bush [beside] the running brook
To read some pages of a favourite book

Pet MS A31 p23 if you are interested in exactly where I found it.

Compare the final two lines with the PoS (published) version, which do you prefer?

  1. Then drops beneath the bushes to peruse
  2. A pocket poet of some favoured muse 

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