Elegy I.

When first I sought that smile of brightness,1
More pleasing haply from its lightness,2
I had but felt a transient grief,3
To think our love might be as brief.4
For tho’ thine eyes, as now, were beaming,5
Oh ! Leila, I was far from dreaming,6
That thou would’st claim, when we should
So large a portion of my heart.8
Methought the ice my breast defended9
Would only make its fires more splendid,10
As sunbeams that in winter glow,11
Glance brightest from the wreathed snow.12
But, oh ! my bosom, which before13
Began so lightly to adore,14
Would now perversely have thee be15
E’en constant in inconstancy.16
And, as the harp’s enliven’d strain17
Doth oft to melancholy wane18
Without the players will or care19
So I am sad, ere well aware.20
Alas ! though I had ever known21
My buried heart was turn’d to stone,22
I might have known that this would prove23
No hindrance to the growth of love.24
Which to the flinty rock will cling,25
And as the slender lichens spring,26
Obtaining life one knows not where,27
Strike root, and live, and flourish there :28
Or say the fragile verdure drew29
Its being from the air and dew ;30
So love its tender leaf uprears,31
Sown but by sighs, and fed with tears.32