The baby new to earth and sky,

What time his tender palm is prest

Against the circle of the breast,

Has never thought that “this is I”:

But as he grows he gathers much,

And learns the use of “I,” and “me,”

And finds “I am not what I see,

And other than the things I touch.”

So rounds he to a separate mind

From whence clear memory may begin,

As thro’ the frame that binds him in

His isolation grows defined.

This use may lie in blood and breath

Which else were fruitless of their due,

Had man to learn himself anew

Beyond the second birth of Death.





Lord Alfred Tennyson

More poems by Baron Alfred, Lord Tennyson