MANUSCRIPT: There are two. The copy reproduced above is incorporated in a letter (BPL Higg 109) written to T. W. Higginson shortly after Christmas 1879, thanking him for the gift of his Short Studies of American Authors. The lines are introduced by the remark:
Remorse for the brevity of a Book is a rare emotion, though fair as Lowell's "Sweet Despair" in the Slipper Hymn -
The poem appears to have been composed for the occasion. It evidently is a redaction of a penciled draft (Bingham 100-6) jotted down on a scrap of paper:
One thing of thee I covet -PUBLICATION: The letter to Higginson is in Letters (ed. 1894), 329; (ed. 1931), 313; also LL (1924), 319. The penciled draft is in AB (1945), 45-46.