It is the hour
It is the hour when from the boughs The nightingale's high note is heard; It is the hour -- when lover's vows Seem sweet in every whisper'd word; And gentle winds and waters near, Make music to the lonely ear. Each flower the dews have lightly wet, And in the sky the stars are met, And on the wave is deeper blue, And on the leaf a browner hue, And in the Heaven that clear obscure So softly dark, and darkly pure, That follows the decline of day As twilight melts beneath the moon away.
She walks in beauty
She walks in beauty, like the night
Of cloudless climes and starry skies;
And all that's best of dark and bright
Meet in her aspect and her eyes:
Thus mellow'd to that tender light
Which heaven to gaudy day denies.
One shade more, one ray less,
Had half impair'd the nameless grace
Which waves in every raven tress,
Or softly lightens o'er her face;
Where thoughts serenely sweet express
How pure, how dear their dwelling place.
And on that cheek, and o'er that brow
So soft, so calm, yet eloquent,
The smiles that win, the tints that glow,
But tell of days in goodness spent,
A mind at peace with all below,
A heart whose love is innocent!
So we'll go no more a roving
So we'll go no more a roving So late into the night, Though the heart be still as loving, And the moon be still as bright. For the sword outwears its sheath, And the soul wears out the breast, And the heart must pause to breathe, And Love itself have rest. Though the night was made for loving, And the day returns too soon, Yet we'll go no more a roving By the light of the moon.
When we two parted
When we two parted In silence and tears, Half broken-hearted To sever for years, Pale grew thy cheek and cold, Colder thy kiss; Truly that hour foretold Sorrow to this. The dew of the morning Sunk chill on my brow- It felt like the warning Of what I feel now. Thy vows are all broken, And light is thy fame: I hear thy name spoken, And share in its shame. They name thee before me, A knell to mine ear; A shudder comes o'er me- Why were thou so dear? They know not I knew thee, Who knew thee too well:- Long, long shall I rue thee, Too deeply to tell. In secret we met- In silence I grieve, That thy heart could forget, Thy spirit deceive. If I should meet thee After long years, How should I greet thee?- With silence and tears.
Remind me not, remind me not
Remind me not, remind me not, Of those beloved, those vanish'd hours, When all my soul was given to thee; Hours that may never be forgot, Till Time unnerves our vital powers, And thou and I shall cease to be. Can I forget---canst thou forget, When playing with thy golden hair, How quick thy fluttering heart did move? Oh! by my soul, I see thee yet, With eyes so languid, breast so fair, And lips, though silent, breathing love. When thus reclining on my breast, Those eyes threw back a glance so sweet, As half reproach'd yet rais'd desire, And still we near and nearer prest, And still our glowing lips would meet, As if in kisses to expire. And then those pensive eyes would close, And bid their lids each other seek, Veiling the azure orbs below; While their long lashes' darken'd gloss Seem'd stealing o'er thy brilliant cheek, Like raven's plumage smooth'd on snow. I dreamt last night our love return'd, And, sooth to say, that very dream Was sweeter in its phantasy, Than if for other hearts I burn'd, For eyes that ne'er like thine could beam In Rapture's wild reality. Then tell me not, remind me not, Of hours which, though for ever gone, Can still a pleasing dream restore, Till Thou and I shall be forgot, And senseless, as the mouldering stone Which tells that we shall be no more.
And Wilt Thou Weep When I Am Low ?
And wilt thou weep when I am low? Sweet lady! speak those words again: Yet if they grieve thee, say not so--- I would not give that bosom pain. My heart is sad, my hopes are gone, My blood runs coldly through my breast; And when I perish, thou alone Wilt sigh above my place of rest. And yet, methinks, a gleam of peace Doth through my cloud of anguish shine: And for a while my sorrows cease, To know thy heart hath felt for mine. Oh lady! blessd be that tear--- It falls for one who cannot weep; Such precious drops are doubly dear To those whose eyes no tear may steep. Sweet lady! once my heart was warm With every feeling soft as thine; But Beauty's self hath ceased to charm A wretch created to repine. Yet wilt thou weep when I am low? Sweet lady! speak those words again: Yet if they grieve thee, say not so--- I would not give that bosom pain.
I Speak Not
I speak not, I trace not, I breathe not thy name; There is grief in the sound, there is guilt in the fame; But the tear that now burns on my cheek may impart The deep thoughts that dwell in that silence of heart. Too brief for our passion, too long for our peace, Were those hours - can their joy or their bitterness cease? We repent, we abjure, we will break from our chain, - We will part, we will fly to - unite it again! Oh! thine be the gladness, and mine be the guilt! Forgive me, adored one! - forsake if thou wilt; But the heart which is thine shall expire undebased, And man shall not break it - whatever thou may'st. And stern to the haughty, but humble to thee, This soul in its bitterest blackness shall be; And our days seem as swift, and our moments more sweet, With thee at my side, than with worlds at our feet. One sigh of thy sorrow, one look of thy love, Shall turn me or fix, shall reward or reprove. And the heartless may wonder at all I resign - Thy lips shall reply, not to them, but to mine.
Sonnet to Genevra
Thy cheek is pale with thought, but not from woe, And yet so lovely, that if Mirth could flush Its rose of whiteness with the brightest blush, My heart would wish away that ruder glow: And dazzle not thy deep-blue eyes---but, oh! While gazing on them sterner eyes will gush, And into mine my mother's weakness rush, Soft as the last drops round Heaven's airy bow. For, though thy long dark lashes low depending, The soul of melancholy Gentleness Gleams like a Seraph from the sky descending, Above all pain, yet pitying all distress; At once such majesty with sweetness blending, I worship more, but cannot love thee less.
(1788 - 1824)