Visit To A Former Country

Is not the past ours, too? O scenes that I found in the known book and your live presence that followed me out of its century, where I had been in another distance, returning to my own somewhat shaken and shining as if flame forked in my mind! O sights that I remember, places been, I hear your voices on an inner wind still, still raised in a cadence of high mood in Mitre Tavern, the great talkers that disputed there, the tireless fine wit by Johnson kindled and by Boswell wooed! Separate moment, flashing on me here, still pause; in you the sequined figures stand secure as in Tom Davies' bookshop where they meet forever, by each other bound. A St. Paul's in my mind! I see it all, as if horizons halted at my bid, and Goldsmith speaks as Reynolds nods his head, and Fanny Burney turns to Mrs. Thrale!

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