Today's the day when Charlotte Brontë's manuscript poem is going under the hammer at Bonhams. La Stampa (Italy) features the poem.
AUTOGRAPH MANUSCRIPT POEM WRITTEN IN HER MINUSCULE HAND SIGNED 'C. BRONTE', dated by her 14 December 1829 and with the autograph note 'from the Young Mans Intelligencer', on a small slip of paper (c. 3 x 3 inches, formerly part of the address leaf of a letter - on the verso survive 'Miss Br' and 'Rev' with a hand-inscribed postal rate), [Haworth Rectory], 14 December 1829
And mid flowery smiling plains
I've been listening to the dark floods
To the thrushes thrilling strains
I have gathered the pale primrose
And the purple violet sweet
I've been where the Asphodel grows
And where lives the red deer fleet.
I've been to the distant mountain,
To the silver singing rill
By the crystal murmering mountain,
And the shady verdant hill.
I've been where the poplar is springing
From the fair Inamelled ground
Where the nightingale is singing
With a solemn plaintive sound.
This poem is one of her earliest (which date from July to December 1829). In all she wrote about 200 and in 1836, when she wrote to Southey asking for his opinion of her talents, she told him that she wished 'to be for ever known' as a poetess. Southey infamously told her she possessed 'in no inconsiderable degree...the faculty of verse... But it is not with a view to distinction that you should cultivate this talent, if you consult your own happiness.'