S: Metropolitan Museum 2011
BC: Pull not down my palace towers, that are so lightly, beautifully built; Perchance I may return with others there....
FC: The Metropolitan Museum of Art New York City, 2011
1: I built my soul a lordly pleasure house, Wherein at ease for aye to dwell.
2: My soul would live alone unto herself In her High Palace There
3: And while the world runs round and round, Reign thou apart a quiet King
4: Trust me in bliss I shall abide in this great mansion that is built for me
5: So royal rich and wide. Far as the wild swan wings, to where the sky dipt down into the sea and sands. And high on every peak a statue seemed to hang on tiptoe.
6: Who shall gaze upon my palace with unblinded eyes
7: Softer than sleep all things in order stored A haunt of ancient peace. Every Landscape fair , as fit for every mood and mid, or gay, or grave, or sweet, or stern, was there, not less than truth designed.
8: For that sweet incense rose and never failed, and, while day sank or mounted higher the golden aerial gallery, golden railed, burnt like a fringe of fire.
9: For that sweet incense rose and never failed, and while the day sank or mounted higher, the light aerial gallery, golden railed, burnt like a fringe of fire..
10: Full of long sounding corridors it was, That over vaulted grateful gloom
11: Through which the live long day my soul did pass, well pleased from room to room.
12: Full of great rooms and small the palace stood | All various, each a perfect whole
13: From living nature, fit for every living mood And change of my still soul.
14: For some were hung with arras green and blue, showing a gaudy summer-morn, where with puffed cheek the belted hunter blew his wreathed bugle horn
16: The maid mother by a crucifix, In tracts of pasture sunny-warm, Beneath branch-work of costly sardonyx Sat smiling babe in arm.
17: Thronging all one porch of Paradise the dying with hands and eyes that said, We wait for thee....
18: Nor these alone; but every legend fair Which the supreme mind Carved out of Nature for itself was there. Not less than life designed, And with choice paintings of wise men I hung the royal Dais round.
19: For there was Milton like a seraph strong, Beside him Shakespeare bland and mild; And there the world-worn Dante grasped his song, And somewhat grimly smiled.
20: But over these she trod; and those great bells began to chime.
21: She took her throne; She sat betwixt the shining oriels, to sing her songs alone.
22: Or in a clear-walled city on the sea, Near gilded organ pipes, her hair wound with white roses, slept Saint Cecily; An angel looked at her.
23: Here played a lion rolling too and fro the heads and crowns of kings
24: And let the world have peace or wars, Tis one to me. | All these are mine
25: I marvel if my still delight in this great house so rich royal and wide be flattered to the height.
26: O all things fair to sate my various eyes! O shapes and hues that please me well!
27: O silent faces of the great and wise | My Gods with whom I dwell!!!
28: O Godlike isolation which art mine, I can count thee perfect gain
29: What time I watch the darkening... that range on yonder plain.
31: I take possession of mans mind and deed. I care not what the sects may brawl. I sit as God holding no form of creed, But contemplating all.
32: Deep dread and loathing of her solitude fell on her, from which mood was born. Scorn of herself; again, from out that mood laughter at her self scorn.
33: Why this is not my place of strength. My spacious mansion built for me, whereof the strong foundation stones were laid since my first memory.
35: And death and life she hated equally, and nothing saw, for her despair, but dreadful time, dreadful eternity, no comfort anywhere; remaining utterly confused with fears and ever worse with growing time, and ever unrelieved by dismal tears, and all alone in crime.
37: As in strange lands a traveler walking slow, in doubt and great perplexity, a little before moon rise hears the low moan of an unknown sea; and knows not if it be thunder, or a sound of rocks thrown down, or one deep cry of great wild beasts; then thinketh, I have found a new land, but a die. I am on fire within. What is it that will take away my sin, And save me lest I die.
39: So when four years were wholly finished, Her royal robes were thrown away. Make me a cottage in the vale where I may mourn and pray.