"Home." by Anne Brontë (1820-1849)
First Publication: Poems by Currer, Ellis, and Acton Bell London: Aylott and Jones, 8, Paternoster Row, 1846. pp. 27-28.
How brightly glistening in the sun
The woodland ivy plays!
While yonder beeches from their barks
Reflect his silver rays.
That sun surveys a lovely scene
From softly smiling skies;
And wildly through unnumbered trees
The wind of winter sighs:
Now loud, it thunders o'er my head,
And now in distance dies.
But give me back my barren hills
Where colder breezes rise;
For yonder garden, fair and wide,
With groves of evergreen,
Long winding walks, and borders trim,
And velvet lawns between;
Restore to me that little spot,
With grey walls compassed round,
Where knotted grass neglected lies,
And weeds usurp the ground.
Though all around this mansion high
Invites the foot to roam,
And though its halls are fair within–
Oh, give me back my HOME!
No manuscript version of this poem is known to exist. It is therefore very difficult to date the poem. A 'best guess' based on internal evidence would be around1843-1844, though any time between 1841-1845 would be possible. Anne contrasts the attractive gardens and mansion of Thorp Green, where she was a governness, with the grey walls of Haworth parsonage, and its surrounding barren hills.