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Days are currently quite busy and I've little energy left for blogging, but in order to maintain a semblance of frequency, I'll put up more poetry now and then. Since I'm currently taking a course on medievalism in Victorian England, I found it fitting to present a poem by one of the key figures of the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood. Elizabeth Siddal (1829-62), a woman of considerable and versatile talents. She has probably gained most fame as a model for some of the most iconic paintings by the Pre-Raphaelites, but she was also herself a painter - as witnessed above - and a poet. Below is one of her poems, A Silent Wood, dated with some uncertainty to 1855-57 by William Michael Rossetti. The text is taken from The Pre-Raphaelites From Rossetti to Ruskin, edited by Dinah Roe and issued in the Penguin Classics series in 2010.
A Silent Wood
O silent wood, I enter thee
With a heart so full of misery -
For all the voices from the trees
And the ferns that cling about my knees.
In thy darkest shadow let me sit
When the grey owls about thee flit:
There I will ask of thee a boon,
That I may not faint or die or swoon.
Gazing through the gloom like one
Whose life and hopes are also done,
Frozen like a thing of stone,
I sit in thy shadow - but not alone.
Can God bring back the day when we two stood
Beneath the clinging trees in that dark wood?
Beata Beatrix (1864-70), Dante Gabriel RossettiOne of the most famous paintings to which Elizabeth Siddal sat model