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For me, degenerate modern wretch,
Though in the genial month of May, My dripping limbs I faintly stretch,
And think I've done a feat to-day.
But since he cross'd the rapid tide,
'Twere hard to say who fared the best :
For he was drown'd, and I've the ague.
May 9, 1810.
MAID OF ATHENS, ERE WE PART
Ζώη μοῦ, σᾶς ἀγαπῶ.
MAID of Athens, ere we part,
Give, oh give me back my heart!
By those tresses unconfined,
By that lip I long to taste;
Maid of Athens! I am gone :
ONE STRUGGLE MORE, AND I AM FREE
ONE struggle more, and I am free
From pangs that rend my heart in twain;
With things that never pleased before :
What future grief can touch me more?
That smiles with all, and weeps with none.
It never would have been, but thou Hast fled, and left me lonely here;
Thou'rt nothing-all are nothing now.
In vain my lyre would lightly breathe!
The smile that sorrow fain would wear
On many a lone and lovely night
It sooth'd to gaze upon the sky; For then I deem'd the heavenly light Shone sweetly on thy pensive eye:
And oft I thought at Cynthia's noon,
When stretch'd on fever's sleepless bed,
"That Thyrza cannot know my pains:
My life, when Thyrza ceased to live!
My Thyrza's pledge in better days,
When love and life alike were new! How different now thou meet'st my gaze! How tinged by time with sorrow's hue! The heart that gave itself with thee
Is silent-ah, were mine as still! Though cold as e'en the dead can be, It feels, it sickens with the chill.
Thou bitter pledge! thou mournful token !
Or break the heart to which thou'rt press'd.
More hallow'd when its hope is fled : Oh! what are thousand living loves
To that which cannot quit the dead?
WHEN Time, or soon or late, shall bring
Wave gently o'er my dying bed!
No band of friends or heirs be there,
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
E'en Pain itself should smile on thee.
But vain the wish-for Beauty still
Will shrink, as shrinks the ebbing breath;
Then lonely be my latest hour,
'Ay, but to die, and go," alas!
Where all have gone, and all must go!
Ere born to life and living woe!
Count o'er the joys thine hours have seen,
'Tis something better not to be.
AND THOU ART DEAD, AS YOUNG AND FAIR “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,
Too soon return'd to Earth!
There is an eye which could not brook
I will not ask where thou liest low,
There flowers or weeds at will may grow,
It is enough for me to prove
To me there needs no stone to tell,
Yet did I love thee to the last
Who didst not change through all the past,
The love where Death has set his seal,
Nor age can chill, nor rival steal,
Nor falsehood disavow:
And, what were worse, thou canst not see
The better days of life were ours;
The sun that cheers, the storm that lowers, 30