Strong ideas may be "rooted" in the brain

— Cristal, Anne Batten (b. c.1768)

Strong ideas may be "rooted" in the brain
Metaphor in Context
A Fragment. The Blind Man

SAY, reverend man, why midst this stormy night
Wander'st thou, darkling and exposed, alone?
Alas! I would assist thee, though unknown.

'Rash youth! that God which robbed my eyes of sight
Darts through my mind a ray of sacred light:
The winds I heed not, nor the lashing shower,
My sinewy frame is firm, my soaring mind has power.
This oaken staff feels out the dangerous way:
'Twas Heaven's fierce fire which swept my eyes away,
And left an orbless trunk, that knows nor night nor day.

Yet strong ideas rooted in my brain
Form there an universe
, which doth contain
Those images which Nature's hand displays,
The heavenly arch, the morning's glowing rays;
Mountains and plains, the sea by tempests hurled,
And all the grandeur of this glorious world!'

But, ah! how wild drives on the rapid storm,
Dashing the rain against thy reverend form!
Yon swelling river, foaming towards the main,
Smokes midst th' advancing waves and falling rain:
O, father! my young soul is shook within;
O! let me lead you from this horrid scene.

'I yield;--but let not fear thy mind deform:
Hark! 'tis God's voice which urges on the storm;
He to this world of elements gave form.
From them he moulded all, yet gave not peace,
But broke the harmony, and bade them rage;
He meant not happiness should join with ease,
But vaired joys and pains should all the world engage.'
(ll. 1-29, p. 490-1)
Lonsdale, R. Ed. Eighteenth Century Women Poets (Oxford: Oxford UP, 1989).
Date of Entry

The Mind is a Metaphor is authored by Brad Pasanek, Assistant Professor of English, University of Virginia.