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My Thyrza's pledge in better days,
Thou bitter pledge! thou mournful token!
Or break the heart to which thou'rt press'd!
Oh! what are thousand living loves
WHEN Time, or soon or late, shall bring
No band of friends or heirs be there,
No maiden, with dishevell'd hair,
But silent let me sink to earth,
With no officious mourners near :
Yet Love, if Love in such an hour
Could nobly check its useless sighs,
In her who lives and him who dies.
'Twere sweet, my Psyche! to the last Thy features still serene to see : Forgetful of its struggles past,
E'en Pain itself should smile on thee.
But vain the wish-for Beauty still
Will shrink, as shrinks the ebbing breath; And woman's tears, produced at will, Deceive in life, unman in death.
Then lonely be my latest hour,
Without regret, without a groan;
For thousands Death hath ceased to lower,
And pain been transient or unknown.
'Ay, but to die, and go," alas!
Where all have gone, and all must go! To be the nothing that I was
Ere born to life and living woe !—
Count o'er the joys thine hours have seen,
Count o'er thy days from anguish free,
And know, whatever thou hast been,
'Tis something better not to be.
AND THOU ART DEAD.
"Heu, quanto minus est cum reliquis versari quam tui meminisse !
AND thou art dead, as young and fair
And form so soft, and charms so rare,
Though earth received them in her bed,
There is an eye which could not brook
I will not ask where thou liest low,
Nor gaze upon the spot;
There flowers or weeds at will may grow,
So I behold them not :
It is enough for me to prove
That what I loved, and long must love,
To me there needs no stone to tell,
Yet did I love thee to the last
As fervently as thou,
Who didst not change through all the past,
The love where Death has set his seal,
Nor falsehood disavow:
And, what were worse, thou canst not see Or wrong, or change, or fault in me.
The better days of life were ours;
The sun that cheers, the storm that lowers,
The silence of that dreamless sleep
Nor need I to repine
That all those charms have pass'd away,
The flower in ripen'd bloom unmatch'd
Though by no hand untimely snatch'd,
And yet it were a greater grief
I know not if I could have borne
The night that follow'd such a morn
The day without a cloud hath pass'd,
As stars that shoot along the sky
Shine brightest as they fall from high.
As once I wept, if I could weep,
To gaze, how fondly! on thy face,
Uphold thy drooping head;
Yet how much less it were to gain,
And more thy buried love endears
WHEN WE TWO PARTED.
WHEN we two parted
In silence and tears,
To sever for years,
Pale grew thy cheek and cold,
Colder thy kiss ;
Sorrow to this.