Except for the arresting line 6, the poem is completely undistinguished— a work that could not be
set apart from any of dozens of similarly accomplished poems published in the periodicals and gift books of the day.
Three early manuscripts survive: the Bancroft corrected copy (a partial copy);
the fair copy with corrections in the Ashley Library; and the
fair copy in the library of Duke University, from which the Ashley Library
manuscript was revised.
The poem was first published by WMR in his 1911 edition of the
Works. WMR used the corrected
Ashley Library copy as his copy text.