The Thomas Merton Center at Bellarmine University

Citation of Books Detail

Click here to return to the main list

Author QuotedEdwin Muir
Title QuotedEstate of Poetry
Date (Year/Month/Day)1966/07/31
ImprintCambridge MA : Harvard University Press. 1962
QuotationSmall wonder that I have in these weeks walked in the world of folk-song and passion - the only one adequate for my perplexities (well, Gregorian is too, thank God). I realize, reading Muir's lecture on "The Natural Estat" of poetry [in The Estate of Poetry, 1962], what the real hermit temptation is: it is to go off with the elves. To take the "Road to Fair Elfland" with the Queen of the Elves - which is neither the narrow thorny path of righteousness nor the broad path of wickedness. That has been my persuasion - that there was another purely free and neutral road, love for M. in our own kind of woods and Cherokee Park (note "Clerk Saunders and May Margaret"!!). It is True Thoreau the layman who goes to Elfland for seven years and then returns!
Quotation SourceLearning to love: exploring solitude and freedom. The Journals of Thomas Merton, Volume 6, 1966-1967.; Edited by Christine M. Bochen. / [San Francisco] : HarperCollins. 1997, p. 105-06
Link to Merton's Copy