Mr Browning’s Poetry: ‘A palpable power’

  • Elizabeth Barrett


But have you seen Paracelsus? I am a little discontented even there, and would wish for more harmony and rather more clearness and compression—concentration— besides: but I do think and feel that the pulse of poetry is full and warm and strong in it, and that, — without being likely perhaps to be a popular poem, — it ‘bears a charmed life’. There is a palpable power! a height and depth of thought, — and sudden repressed gushings of tenderness which suggest to us a depth beyond, in the affections. I wish you would read it, and agree with me that the author is a poet in the holy sense. And I wish besides that some passages in the poem referring to the divine Being had been softened or removed. They sound to me daringly; and that is not the appropriate daring of genius.

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© Palgrave Macmillan, a division of Macmillan Publishers Limited 2000

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  • Elizabeth Barrett

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