Stanzas to [Augusta]
Though the day of my destiny's over,
And the star of my fate hath declined,
Thy soft heart refused to discover
The faults which so many could find;
5Though thy soul with my grief was acquainted,
It shrunk not to share it with me,
And the love which my spirit hath painted
It never hath found but in thee.
Then when nature around me is smiling
10 The last smile which answers to mine,
I do not believe it beguiling
Because it reminds me of thine;
And when winds are at war with the ocean,
As the breasts I believed in with me,
15If their billows excite an emotion,
It is that they bear me from thee.
Though the rock of my last hope is shiver'd,
And its fragments are sunk in the wave,
Though I feel that my soul is deliver'd
20 To pain — it shall not be its slave.
There is many a pang to pursue me:
They may crush, but they shall not contemn -
They may torture, but shall not subdue me -
'Tis of thee that I think — not of them.
25Though human, thou didst not deceive me,
Though woman, thou didst not forsake,
Though loved, thou forborest to grieve me,
Though slander'd, thou never could'st shake, -
Though trusted, thou didst not betray me,
30 Though parted, it was not to fly,
Though watchful, 'twas not to defame me,
Nor, mute, that the world might belie.
Yet I blame not the world, nor despise it,
Nor the war of the many with one -
35If my soul was not fitted to prize it
'Twas folly not sooner to shun:
And if dearly that error hath cost me,
And more than I once could foresee,
I have found that, whatever it lost me,
40 It could not deprive me of thee.
From the wreck of the past, which hath perish'd,
Thus much I at least may recall,
It hath taught me that which I most cherish'd
Deserved to be dearest of all:
45In the desert a fountain is springing,
In the wide waste there still is a tree,
And a bird in the solitude singing,
Which speaks to my spirit of thee.