Charlotte Smith

4 May 1749 – 28 October 1806 / London

Sonnet Lxxvii. To The Insect Of The Gossamer

SMALL, viewless aeronaut, that by the line
Of Gossamer suspended, in mid air
Float'st on a sun beam--Living atom, where
Ends thy breeze-guided voyage;--with what design,
In ether dost thou launch thy form minute,
Mocking the eye?--Alas! before the veil
Of denser clouds shall hide thee, the pursuit
Of the keen Swift may end thy fairy sail!--
Thus on the golden thread that Fancy weaves
Buoyant, as Hope's illusive flattery breathes,
The young and visionary poet leaves
Life's dull realities, while sevenfold wreaths
Of rainbow-light around his head revolve.
Ah! soon at Sorrow's touch the radiant dreams dissolve!
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