The day is warm, the sky is clear, the waves sparkle. Blue islands and snow-topped mountains look purple in the midday light. Buds are ready to blossom. The sounds of the winds, the birds, the waves, and of Naples itself blend in pleasant harmony. Shelley sees the seaweed on the ocean bottom and watches the waves dissolve into light as they strike the shore. He sits alone on the sand, observing the sparkling ocean and listening to the sound of the waves. How pleasant all this would be if there were someone with whom he could share the emotion he feels.
Shelley was in Naples from November 29, 1818, to February 28, 1819. Naples in winter offers a pleasantly warm climate. Naples is at its best, so far as weather is concerned, and Shelley and his wife, Mary, should have been happy there. However, Shelley was in poor health and the delightful winter climate of Naples did not help him. The major cause of his dejection was not his health but his wife's estrangement from him following the death of their daughter Clara on September 24, 1818.




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