Emily Jane Brontë

(30 July 1818 – 19 December 1848 / Thornton / Yorkshire)

The Old Stoic - Poem by Emily Jane Brontë

Riches I hold in light esteem;
And Love I laugh to scorn;
And lust of fame was but a dream
That vanished with the morn:

And if I pray, the only prayer
That moves my lips for me
Is, 'Leave the heart that now I bear,
And give me liberty! '

Yes, as my swift days near their goal,
'Tis all that I implore;
In life and death, a chainless soul,
With courage to endure.

Topic(s) of this poem: courage

Comments about The Old Stoic by Emily Jane Brontë

  • (1/28/2014 7:53:00 PM)

    This is my favourite poem by Emily Bronte. Her strength in facing her death, her courage - and if she felt regret, and I often think how could she not- there's no self pity. To look back as she did on her past ambitions, however fleeting or shadowy they were and to mock not only that ambition but herself for feeling it or even needing it. I wish myself as capable of turning from the ephemeral, worldly ambition we claim as so important today and grasp more sincerely the deeper, finer things of living we too often take for granted. (Report) Reply

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  • Palas Kumar Ray (1/19/2009 4:55:00 AM)

    This poem was in my school text and I have always loved this poem.
    As I remember Emily wrote this poem as she was slowly approaching her death
    in her early 30's dying out of Tuberculosis which was not at all curable at her time.
    (Report) Reply

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Read poems about / on: lust, courage, dream, death, light, heart, life, love

Poem Submitted: Tuesday, December 31, 2002

Poem Edited: Saturday, January 3, 2015

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