[Page 278]

Written at West-Aston.

June, 1808.

1 YES, I remember the dear suffering saint,
2 Whose hand, with fond, commemorative care,
3 Planted that myrtle on my natal day.
4 It was a day of joy to him she loved
5 Best upon earth; and still her gentle heart,
6 That never felt one passion's eager throb,
7 Nor aught but quiet joys, and patient woes,
8 Was prompt to sympathize with all; and most
9 With that beloved brother. She had hoped
10 Perchance, that, fondly on his arm reclined
11 In placid happiness, her feeble step
12 Might here have wandered through these friendly shades,
13 This hospitable seat of kindred worth:
14 And that the plant, thus reared, in future years
15 Might win his smile benignant, when her hand
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16 Should point where, in its bower of loveliness,
17 Bright spreading to the sun its fragrant leaf,
18 His Mary's myrtle bloomed. Ah me! 'tis sad
19 When sweet affection thus designs in vain,
20 And sees the fragile web it smiling spun
21 In playful love, crushed by the sudden storm,
22 And swept to dark oblivion, mid the wreck
23 Of greater hopes! Even while she thought of bliss,
24 Already o'er that darling brother's head
25 The death-commissioned angel noiseless waved
26 His black and heavy wings: and though she mourned
27 That stroke, in pious sorrow, many a year,
28 Yet, even then, the life-consuming shaft
29 In her chaste breast she uncomplaining bore.
30 Now, both at rest, in blessed peacefulness,
31 With no impatient hope, regret, or doubt,
32 Await that full completion of the bliss
33 Which their more perfect spirits shall receive.
34 Fair blossomed her young tree, effusing sweet
35 Its aromatic breath; for other eyes
36 Blushed the soft folded buds, and other hands
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37 Pruned its luxuriant branches: friendship still
38 Preserved the fond memorial; nay, even yet
39 Would fain preserve with careful tenderness
40 The blighted relic of what once it loved.
41 Hard were the wintry hours felt even here
42 Amid these green protecting walls, and late
43 The timid Spring, oft chilled and rudely checked,
44 At last unveiled her tenderest charms, and smiled
45 With radiant blushes on her amorous train:
46 But no reviving gale, no fruitful dew,
47 Visits the brown parched leaf, or from the stem,
48 The withering stem, elicits the young shoots
49 With hopes of life and beauty; yet thy care
50 Perhaps, dear Sydney, thine assiduous care
51 May save it still. What can resist the care
52 Of fond, assiduous love? Oh! it can raise
53 The shuddering soul, though sunk beneath the black,
54 Suspended pall of death! Believe this lip,
55 Believe this grateful heart, which best can feel
56 The life-restoring power of watchful love.

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    Title (in Source Edition): Written at West-Aston. June, 1808.
    Themes:
    Genres: blank verse; occasional poem

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    Psyche, With Other Poems. London: Printed for LONGMAN, HURST, REES, ORME, AND BROWN, PATERNOSTER-ROW, 1811, pp. 278-280. 314p. (Page images digitized by University of California Libraries.)

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