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97

ROUD word you never spoke, but you will speak
P Four not exempt from pride some future day.
Resting on one white hand a warm wet cheek

Over my open volume, you will say,
“This man loved me!then rise and trip away.

Walter Savage Landor

98

RONSARD TO HIS MISTRESS

(IMITATED FROM THE FRENCH)

SOME

OME winter night, shut snugly in

Beside the faggot in the hall,
I think I see you sit and spin,

Surrounded by your maidens all.
Old tales are told, old songs are sung,

Old days come back to memory;
You say, “When I was fair and young,

A poet sang of me!”.

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“Our lady's old and feeble now,"

They'll say: “she once was fresh and fair,
And yet she spurned her lover's vow,

And heartless left him to despair:

The lover lies in silent earth,

No kindly mate the lady cheers;
She sits beside a lonely hearth,

With threescore and ten years!”

Ah! dreary thoughts and dreams are those,

But wherefore yield me to despair,
While yet the poet's bosom glows,

While yet the dame is peerless fair!
Sweet lady mine! while yet 'tis time

Requite my passion and my truth,
And gather in their blushing prime
The roses of your youth!

William Make peace Thackeray

99

ODE TO CASSANDRA1

SEE

EE, Lady, how the selfsame rose,

Which in the morning did disclose
Its purple petals to the sun,
Amid the twilight's darkening shades
With drooping, damask petals fades
Sweet damask hue, so like your

own!

Alas! see how each fitting hour,
My Lady, this pale purple flower
Doth of its fragile beauties reave.
Ah, Nature, why so pitiless!
And why should roses flourish less
Than dures a day from morn to eve!

1 Translated by William F. Giese.

Nay, heed, oh heed me, Lady mine,
While yet the roses bud and twine
Athwart the marble of your brow,
And cull youth's blossoms, lovely Maid-
Lest all untouched they faint and fade
As this sweet flower is fading now!

Pierre Ronsard

100

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me,

O, lovely rose!

Tell her that wastes her time and
That now she knows,
When I resemble her to thee,
How sweet and fair she seems to be.

Tell her that's young,
And shuns to have her graces spied,
That hadst thou sprung
In deserts, where no men abide,
Thou must have uncommended died.

Small is the worth
Of beauty from the light retired;
Bid her come forth,
Suffer herself to be desired,
And not blush so to be admired.

Then die! that she
The common fate of all things rare
May read in thee;
How small a part of time they share
That are so wondrous sweet and fair!

Edmund Waller

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My lady comes at last,
Timid, and stepping fast

And hastening hither,
With modest eyes downcast;
She comes -she's here—she's past!

May Heaven go with her!

Kneel undisturbed, fair Saint!
Pour out your praise or plaint

Meekly and duly;
I will not enter there,
To sully your pure prayer

With thoughts unruly.

But suffer me to pace
Round the forbidden place,

Lingering a minute,
Like outcast spirits, who wait,
And see, through Heaven's gate,
Angels within it.

William Makepeace Thackeray

102

TO HELEN

HELI

ELEN, thy beauty is to me

Like those Nicéan barks of yore,
That gently, o'er a perfumed sea,

The weary, way-worn wanderer bore
To his own native shore.

On desperate seas long wont to roam,

Thy hyacinth hair, thy classic face,
Thy Naiad airs have brought me home

To the glory that was Greece,
And the grandeur that was Rome.

Lo! in yon brilliant window-niche

How statue-like I see thee stand,
The agate lamp within thy hand!

Ah, Psyche, from the regions which
Are Holy-Land!

Edgar Allan Poe

103

SWEE

WEET stream, that winds through yonder glade,

Apt emblem of a virtuous maid, -
Silent and chaste she steals along,
Far from the world's gay, busy throng;
With gentle yet prevailing force,

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