Sonnet LVII. To Dependence

Charlotte Smith 1749 (London) – 1806 (Tilford, Surrey)

DEPENDENCE! heavy, heavy are thy chains,
And happier they who from the dangerous sea,
Or the dark mine, procure with ceaseless pains
A hard-earn'd pittance--than who trust to thee!
More blest the hind, who from his bed of flock
Starts--when the birds of morn their summons give,
And waken'd by the lark--' the shepherd's clock,'
Lives but to labour--labouring but to live.
More noble than the sycophant, whose art
Must heap with tawdry flowers thy hated shrine;
I envy not the meed thou canst impart
To crown his service--while, tho' pride combine
With Fraud to crush me--my unfetter'd heart
Still to the Mountain Nymph may offer mine.

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Submitted on May 13, 2011

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Charlotte Smith

Charlotte Turner Smith was an English Romantic poet and novelist. She initiated a revival of the English sonnet, helped establish the conventions of Gothic fiction, and wrote political novels of sensibility. A successful writer, she published ten novels, three books of poetry, four children's books, and other assorted works over the course of her career. She saw herself as a poet first and foremost, poetry at that period being considered the most exalted form of literature. Scholars now credit her with transforming the sonnet into an expression of woeful sentiment. more…

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    "Sonnet LVII. To Dependence" Poetry.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2020. Web. 5 Dec. 2020. <https://www.poetry.net/poem/5598/sonnet-lvii.-to-dependence>.

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