As stars that shoot along the sky
Shine brightest as they fall from high.
As once I wept, if I could weep,
My tears might well be shed,
To think I was not near to keep
One vigil o'er thy bed;
To gaze, how fondly! on thy face,
To fold thee in a faint embrace,
Uphold thy drooping head;
And show that love, however vain,
Nor thou nor I can feel again.
Yet how much less it were to gain,
Though thou hast left me free,
The loveliest things that still remain,
Than thus remember thee!
The all of thine that cannot die
Through dark and dread Eternity
Returns again to me,
And more thy buried love endears
Than aught, except its living years.
[First published, Childe Harold, 1812 (Second Edition).]
- As stars that seem to quit the sky.—[MS.]
- O how much less it were to gain,
All beauteous though they be.—[MS.]
- Through dark and dull Eternity.—[MS.]