Youth's Magazine,  3rd ser. 4 (1831), 385–91.

Itinerant Thoughts

I T, pseud.  [I T] / M G, pseud.  [M G]


Miscellaneous / Afterword


Reasoning, Feeling, Botany, Piety

    Reflects on the sometimes capricious nature of thought: 'A wild-flower beneath the feet, or the hum of a beetle in the air, calls it off from its contemplations, and a new series of ideas dissipates and enfeebles its powers of abstraction' (385). The pious heart, however, will call the reasoning mind back to its duty. Describes a meditation while walking in the woods. Seeing some Epilobium reminds the narrator that a young friend had the previous evening observed that she had never forgotten the name of that plant, since the narrator had told her about its habit, taxonomy, and form. 'This little plant then, thought I, is a botanical memorandum [...] with which my young friend always associates an idea of me; and in the study of science such remembrances are surely very pleasing' (386). The narrator wishes, however, that the lesson thus impressed had been more sacred, and the remainder of the meditation concerns such sacred lessons. Observes: 'it is only so far as we know Christ the infinite wisdom, that any knowledge is valuable [...]. As one of the fathers of old, speaking of the truth of the philosophical sciences, well observes,—"Unhappy is that man who knows all these things, and knows not thee, O God! But blessed is he who knows thee, though he knows not all these things"' (387). An afterword signed 'M. G.' notes: 'The above paper is signed "I. T." which probably means either Itinerant Thoughts, or, that it is written by a person in the habit of mental speculation, when wandering through the beautiful scenery of nature' (391).

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