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February 11. Dreamed of an interview with a female pope. I had to go to Alliance Meeting to speak about Wordsworth. I hunted up some verses written about him in my early enthusiasm, probably in 1840 or 1841. This I read and then told of my visit to him with Dr. Howe and the unpleasantness of the experience. Spoke also of the reaction in England against the morbid discontent which is so prominent and powerful in much of Byron's poetry....”

February 12. ... In my dream of yesterday morning the woman pope and I were on very friendly terms. I asked on leaving whether I might kiss her hand. She said, ‘You may kiss my hand.’ I found it fat and far from beautiful. As I left her, methought that her countenance relaxed and she looked like a tired old woman. In my dream I thought, ‘How like this is to what Pope Leo would do.’ ”

February 13.... Felt greatly discouraged at first waking. It seemed impossible for me to make a first move under so many responsibilities. A sudden light came into my soul at the thought that God will help me in any good undertaking, and with this there came an inkling of first steps to be taken with regard to Sig. Leoni's parchment.1 I went to work again on my prize poem, with better success than hitherto ...”

February 14. Philosophy at Mrs. Bullard's.... Sent off my prize poem with scarcely any hope of its obtaining or indeed deserving the prize, but Mar2 has promised to pay me something for it in any case, and I was bound to try for the object, namely, a good civic poem . .”

1 That is, to have it bought by some public society.

2 An editor.

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