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Selected Poetry of Celia Thaxter (1835-1894)


from Representative Poetry On-line
Prepared by members of the Department of English at the University of Toronto
from 1912 to the present and published by the University of Toronto Press from 1912 to 1967.
RPO Edited by Ian Lancashire
A UTEL (University of Toronto English Library) Edition
Published by the Web Development Group, Information Technology Services, University of Toronto Libraries
© 2003, Ian Lancashire for the Department of English, University of Toronto

Index to poems

Above our heads the sullen clouds
Scud, black and swift, across the sky:
Like silent ghosts in misty shrouds
Stand out the white light-houses high.
        (The Sandpiper)
  1. The Sandpiper
  2. The Shag


Notes on Life and Works

Celia Laighton was born June 29, 1835, in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, and grew up on the Isles of Shoals. In 1851 she and Levi Thaxter married, came to live in Newtonville, Massachusetts, by 1856, and had several children. When she discovered that the editor of The Atlantic Monthly had published her poem "Land-locked" without her permission in March 1860, she started writing poetry and stories for popular journals like Harper's. Much of her writing was about the Isle of Shoals, where she eventually returned to work in her family's Appledore Hotel. Her volumes of verse include

She died Aug. 26, 1894, on Appledore Island. For biographical information, see

Biographical information

Given name: Celia
Family name: Thaxter
Birth date: 1835
Death date: 1894