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The Poet’s Last Song.


Heart—heart be still,
   Thy fond aspirings cease,
Thy cup of misery soon shall fill—
   So be at peace.

Life! fleeting life!
   Thy sunniest hours are past,
Why seek thee to prolong the dark’ning strife
   With it to last.

Bring me my lyre,
   I yet may sweep its strings,
’Twill aid the visions that life’s flickering fire
   In rapture brings.

Earth! sea! and sky!
   I see thy hallowed spots—
My soul, even now, is treading daringly
   Where beauty floats.

Round sunny hill—
   Now in the leafy grove,
Where birds make music that the soul doth fill
   With thoughts of love.

And thou, dread sea!
   My youthful days return,
Pictured in vision, in my soul, I see
   Thee, and do mourn:

That I may ne’er
   Again lie on thy breast,
Pillow my cheek upon thy waves, nor e’er
   Break thy foam crest.

God of the sky—
   How oft at eventide,
When thou to rest were sinking gloriously,
   Have I beside
Some ruin gray,
Knelt down and worshipped thee!
.     .     .     .     .     .

‘Tis broke—’tis broke—
   The chain is snapt—the link
Of being sever’d—man living—death may mock
   Not on the brink
Where life meets death.
   My song is done—away!
Open the lattice that the summer’s breath
   May coolly play

Upon my brow.
   Life now throbs—fitfully—
By starts ‘tis calm, as if it linger’d—now
   On wings I fly
To love and home—
   I see them vividly—

.     .     .     .     .     .

Now let me die.

Copied from “The Day” of April 18th, 1832.





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