Alexander Smith

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Alexander Smith (31 December 18295 January 1867) was a Scottish poet, and labelled as one of the Spasmodic School.


  • We hear the wail of the remorseful winds
    In their strange penance. And this wretched orb
    Knows not the taste of rest; a maniac world,
    Homeless and sobbing through the deep she goes.
    • Unrest and Childhood.
  • The soul of man is like the rolling world,
    One half in day, the other dipt in night;
    The one has music and the flying cloud,
    The other, silence and the wakeful stars.
    • Horton.
  • Time has fallen asleep in the afternoon sunshine.
    • Dreamthorp: Essays written in the Country (1863).
  • The man who in this world can keep the whiteness of his soul is not likely to lose it in any other.
    • Dreamthorp: Essays written in the Country (1863).

A Life Drama and other Poems (1853)[edit]

  • Like a pale martyr in his shirt of fire.
    • Scene 2.
  • In winter, when the dismal rain
    Comes down in slanting lines,
    And Wind, that grand old harper, smote
    His thunder-harp of pines.
    • Scene 2.
  • A poem round and perfect as a star.
    • Scene 2.
  • Some books are drenchèd sands
    On which a great soul’s wealth lies all in heaps,
    Like a wrecked argosy.
    • Scene 2.
  • The saddest thing that befalls a soul
    Is when it loses faith in God and woman.
    • Scene 12.
  • We twain have met like the ships upon the sea,
    Who hold an hour’s converse, so short, so sweet;
    One little hour! And then, away they speed
    On lonely paths, through mist and cloud and foam,
    To meet no more.
    • Part iv.

City Poems (1857)[edit]

  • Each time we love,
    We turn a nearer and a broader mark
    To that keen archer, Sorrow, and he strikes.
    • "A Boy’s Dream".
  • Death is the ugly fact which Nature has to hide, and she hides it well.
    • "The Fear of Dying".
  • Everything is sweetened by risk.
    • "The Fear of Dying".
  • In life there is nothing more unexpected and surprising than the arrivals and departures of pleasure. If we find it in one place to-day, it is vain to seek it there to-morrow. You can not lay a trap for it.
    • "The Fear of Dying".

External links[edit]

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