Harpur writes, in part: 'When conceiving ['Love in the Past'], I distinctly remember to have wished myself for once a musician instead of a poet... So many thoughts have we, and particularly so many sensations, which the accents of music can alone express in passing, or reproductively symbolize when past. Yet I once thought music wholly subordinate to, and dependent upon, poetry in the expression of absolute purpose. But my feeling of the nature and scope of the former art has altered, or rather developed considerably since then... I feel now (in 1849) that language could no more arrest and embody such conceptions of the beautiful in its eternity, as are lapped for ever in some of the bursts of Mozart, for instance... They are instinct with revelations of the soul's immortality; and all who have heard them have "drunk of the milk of Paradise".'