377. To Thomas Poole Address: Mr T. Poole | N. Stowey | Bridgewater | Somerset. MS. British Museum. Pub. E. L. G. i. 170. Postmark: 4 February 1801. Stamped: Keswick. Sunday Night. Feb. 1. 1801 My dear Poole It mingles with the pleasures of convalescence, with the breeze that trembles on my nerves, the thought how glad you will be to hear that I am striding back to my former health with such manful paces. The Fluid is nearly, indeed almost wholly absorbed, and though I cannot sit up very long without lassitude & pains in my back, yet I can sit up every day longer than the Day before. I have begun to take Bark, and I hope, that shortly I shall look back on my long & painful Illness only as a Storehouse of wild Dreams for Poems, or intellectual Facts for metaphysical Speculation. Davy in the kindness of his heart calls me the Poet-philosopher -- I hope, Philosophy & Poetry will not neutralize each ____________________ 1 In 1801 Thelwall published a novel, The Daughter of Adoption, 4 vols., under the pseudonym, John Beaufort, LL.D. -668- other, & leave me an inert mass. But I talk idly -- I feel, that I have power within me: and I humbly pray to the Great Being, the God & Father who has bidden me 'rise & walk' that he will grant me a steady mind to employ the health of my youth and manhood in the manifestation of that power. One week more of Repose I am enjoined to grant myself: & then I gird up my Loins, first, to disembarrass my circumstances by fulfilling all my engagements / & then to a Work -- O my dear dear Friend! that you were with me by the fireside of my Study here, that I might talk it over with you to the Tune of this Night Wind that pipes it's thin doleful climbing sinking Notes like a child that has lost it's way and is crying aloud, half in grief and half in the hope to be heard by it's Mother. 1 But when your Ripping is over, you will come, or at farthest immediately after your Hay Harvest. -- Believe me, often and often in my walks amid these sublime Landscapes. I have trod the ground impatiently, irritated that you were not with me. -- Poor dear Mrs Robinson I you have heard of her Death. She wrote me a most affecting, heart-rending Letter a few weeks before she died, to express what she called her death bed affection & esteem for me -- the very last Lines of her Letter are indeed sublime -- 'My little Cottage is retired and comfortable. There I mean to remain (if indeed I live so long) till Christmas. But it is not surrounded with the romantic Scenery of your chosen retreat: it is not, my dear Sir! the nursery of sublime Thoughts -- the abode of Peace -- the solitude of Nature's Wonders. O! Skiddaw! -- I think, if I could but once contemplate thy Summit, I should never quit the Prospect it would present till my eyes were closed for ever!' O Poole! that that Woman had but been married to a noble Being, what a noble Being she herself would have been. Latterly, she felt this with a poignant anguish. -- Well! -- O'er her pil'd grave the gale of evening sighs; And flowers will grow upon it's grassy Slope. I wipe the dimming Water from mine eyes -- Ev'n in the cold Grave dwells the Cherub Hope! 2 Our children are well -- twenty times a week I see in little Derwent such a striking Look of your dear Mother! -- My love to Ward. -- I congratulate him on his Brother's Marriage. ---- Have you received the 15£ from Mr Wedgewood? he informed me that he would send it to you speedily. I received 25£ from him, which I payed off immediately -- and now that I am so near to Health, & shall be soon able to finish my engagements with Longman, I feel ____________________ 1 Cf. Dejection; an Ode, lines 121-5; Poems, i. 868; and Letter 438, p. 795. 2 Poems, ii. 996. -669- a repugnance at sending to him again for more money immediately. If it would [be] no inconvenience to you to let me have 20£ for six weeks, you would make my mind easy -- at that time I will either send you back the Money myself, or write to Mr Wedgewood to do so. But if it be inconvenient to you, feel no pain in telling me so -- only write to me. I have paid Phillips, as I told you, I believe; & that the Fellow sent me an Attorney's Letter ---- it amused me exceedingly at first -- but afterwards it made my very heart ache, thinking of poor Cruckshank ---- God bless you, my dear Friend! & S. T. Coleridge. --