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THE LADY OF SHALOTT by ALFRED, LORD TENNYSON
The Lady of Shalott lived locked away in her castle, and the citizens of Camelot called her "the fair lady of Shalott." A mysterious curse kept her isolated, forbidding her from leaving her home or looking outside. She dared not test the curse, so she spent her time weaving. Her only connection to the outside world was a mirror in which she could see the reflection of Camelot.
She longed to venture outside. She heard the chatter and antics of the people below, and wanted to break away from her solitude. She saw couples in love and ached to have someone of her own. To cope with her loneliness, she weaved what she saw in the mirror.
I am half-sick of shadows.
One day, Sir Lancelot was riding his horse by the banks of the river. He was singing a song which traveled to the ears of Lady Shalott. Upon looking at him, she was taken aback by his astonishing good looks. She became infatuated with him, but by looking at him she cursed herself.
She became infatuated with Lancelot. By looking at him, the curse she was wary of was now upon her. The web she was weaving floated out of the window and out of the castle, and her mirror cracked.
The Lady of Shalott races down to the bank and scribbles her name onto the side of a boat before getting in it and floating away. She sets off for Camelot at sunset, despite the weather being cold and rainy. She freezes to death before she can get there.
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