The life and works of William Cullen Bryant
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298 THE BATTLE WITH THE BANK.
know why until you showed me. I have rung half a dozen changes
on the faulty line. You shall choose :
yea, seats himself
Upon the tyrant s throne the sepulchre
As in defiance, on the sepulchre
In loneliness upon the sepulchre
& quot; The words that to the graves seem/ in the second line of The
Prairies, strike me as feeble. I wish the commencement of that
poem to stand thus :
These are the gardens of the desert, these
The unshorn fields, boundless and beautiful,
And fresh as the young earth ere man had sinned *
The prairies, etc.
To sup upon the dead I do not like. Bosom and blossom
are in Wordsworth, whose rhymes are generally correct :
Fill your lap and fill your bosom,
Only spare the strawberry blossom.
& quot; But I will think of it. I have cleared away the rubbish, as far
as I am able, from the first part of the volume at least, and, since you
have kindly undertaken to read the proofs for me, I will give you the
trouble to see that the changes noted above are duly made. & quot;
Mr. Dana s answer was from Cambridge, December 7,
1833^
& quot; The printing of your volume has gone on rather slowly. . . .
They will make a handsome volume of it, I think. You delivered up
The Robber like a man. After writing you, I felt a little troubled
about it, lest I had taken too great a liberty. True, I would gladly
have received a like advice from you, whether I finally determined to
follow it or not ; but, then, you are a master in these matters, and I
scarcely so much as a learner in them. Allston was up here to see
me after I received your letter, and I told him that you had directed
* This verse is not now in the poem, but in its place :
& quot; For which the speech of England has no name. & quot;
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