A Fixed Idea
What torture lurks within a single thought
When grown too constant; and however kind,
However welcome still, the weary mind
Aches with its presence. Dull remembrance taught
Remembers on unceasingly; unsought
The old delight is with us but to find
That all recurring joy is pain refined,
Become a habit, and we struggle, caught.
You lie upon my heart as on a nest,
Folded in peace, for you can never know
How crushed I am with having you at rest
Heavy upon my life. I love you so
You bind my freedom from its rightful quest.
In mercy lift your drooping wings and go.
This poem is in the public domain.
About this Poem
“A Fixed Idea” was first published in the Atlantic Monthly in 1910, then published in Lowell’s collection A Dome of Many-Coloured Glass (Houghton Mifflin, 1912).
Born in 1874, Amy Lowell was deeply interested in and influenced by the Imagist movement and she received the Pulitzer Prize for her collection What's O'Clock.
Date Published: 2016-06-18
Source URL: https://poets.org/poem/fixed-idea