In Memoriam A. H. H. OBIIT MDCCCXXXIII: 45

By Alfred, Lord Tennyson 1809–1892 Alfred, Lord Tennyson
The baby new to earth and sky,
         What time his tender palm is prest
         Against the circle of the breast,
Has never thought that "this is I":

But as he grows he gathers much,
         And learns the use of "I," and "me,"
         And finds "I am not what I see,
And other than the things I touch."

So rounds he to a separate mind
         From whence clear memory may begin,
         As thro' the frame that binds him in
His isolation grows defined.

This use may lie in blood and breath
         Which else were fruitless of their due,
         Had man to learn himself anew
Beyond the second birth of Death.

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Poet Alfred, Lord Tennyson 1809–1892

POET’S REGION England

SCHOOL / PERIOD Victorian

Subjects Living, Birth & Birthdays, Infancy, Death

Poetic Terms Rhymed Stanza, Series/Sequence

 Alfred, Lord  Tennyson

Biography

More than any other Victorian writer, Tennyson has seemed the embodiment of his age, both to his contemporaries and to modern readers. In his own day he was said to be—with Queen Victoria and Gladstone—one of the three most famous living persons, a reputation no other poet writing in English has ever had. As official poetic spokesman for the reign of Victoria, he felt called upon to celebrate a quickly changing industrial and . . .

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Poems by Alfred, Lord Tennyson

Poem Categorization

SUBJECT Living, Birth & Birthdays, Infancy, Death

POET’S REGION England

SCHOOL / PERIOD Victorian

Poetic Terms Rhymed Stanza, Series/Sequence

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Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

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