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ANNA LÆTITIA BARBAULD

1743-1825

488                                                     Life

LIFE! I know not what thou art,
But know that thou and I must part;
And when, or how, or where we met,
I own to mes a secret yet.
But this I know, when thou art fled,
Whereer they lay these limbs, this head
, No clod so valueless shall be
As all that then remains of me.
O whither, whither dost thou fly?
Where bend unseen thy trackless course?
    And in this strange divorce,
Ah, tell where I must seek this compound I?
To the vast ocean of empyreal flame
    From whence thy essence came
Dost thou thy flight pursue, when freed
From matters base encumbering weed?
    Or dost thou, hid from sight,
    Wait, like some spell-bound knight,
Through blank oblivious years th appointed hour
To break thy trance and reassume thy power?
Yet canst thou without thought or feeling be?
O say, what art thou, when no more thourt thee?

Life! we have been long together,
Through pleasant and through cloudy weather;
     Tis hard to part when friends are dear;
     Perhaps twill cost a sigh, a tear;
Then steal away, give little warning,
          Choose thine own time;
Say not Good-night, but in some brighter clime
          Bid me Good-morning!

 

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