The solitude of Celia Thaxter's childhood, which was not solitude,
surrounded as she was with the love of a father and a mother, all
tenderness, and brothers dear to her as her own life, developed in
the child strange faculties. She was five years old when the family
left Portsmouth, --old enough, given her inborn power of enjoyment
of nature, to delight in the free air and the wonderful sights
around her. She gives in her book a pretty picture of the child
watching the birds that flew against the lighthouse lantern, when
they lived at White Island. The birds would strike it with such
force as to kill themselves.
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