by Samuel Taylor Coleridge
Metrical Feet Man and the Natural World Quotes
How we cite our quotes: (Line)
If Derwent be innocent, steady, and wise, (11)
This line puzzled us when we first read it. In addition to being Coleridge's son's name, the Derwent is also a river in northern England. So for a second, it's easy to confuse the two Derwents, especially if one doesn't know that it's Coleridge's son's name.
If Derwent be innocent, steady, and wise,
And delight in the things of earth, water, and skies; (11-12)
The rhyme on "wise" and "skies" is interesting. Could there be some relationship between "delighting" in nature and wisdom? Alternatively, it could also mean that those who are "wise" are somehow equivalent to the "skies," in beauty or grandeur.
Could you stand upon Skiddaw, you would not from its whole ridge
See a man who so loves you as your fond S.T. Coleridge. (17-18)
"Could" is an interesting word for it implies that Derwent is not able to stand on the top of Skiddaw (maybe it's because he's too young?). Either way, nature can be daunting, something we cannot conquer.