Poems of Letitia Elizabeth Landon (L. E. L.) in The Amulet, 1836/Le Chapeau Noir

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THE CHAPEAU NOIR

Painted by Henry WyattEngraved by W. H. Simmons






LE CHAPEAU NOIR.


BY L. E. L.


A courtly beauty—one whose life
    Has been perhaps a pleasant dream,
The shadow of a flower cast
    Upon a sunny stream.

Upon her brow there are no lines,
    Upon her face there is no care;
But such soft pensiveness as oft
    The young and happy wear.

The plumes that play around her head
    The fan within her fairy hand;
The pearls that circle that white neck,
    With a scarce whiter band,


Are soft, and light, and fair as she
    Who weareth them as wears a queen
The crown that from her infancy
    Upon her head has been.

Her beauty is a pride and power,
    The right divine around a throne;
It is the triumph of her eyes,
    To make all hearts her own.

She steppeth with a silvery step
    A sweet yet stately grace;
She doth not wait to see who marks
    The sunshine of her face.

But there will come another time,
    Its coming is beside her now;
I read it on the parted lip,
    And on the gentle brow.

When those sweet eyes will seek the ground,
    Or, raised, will only seek to see,
What language, till that hour unknown,
    In other eyes can be.

That cheek will wear a deeper rose,
    Whose crimson colours never glow
But when they speak instead of words,
    For the full heart below.


Pause lady, on thy present time,
    It is life's brightest and its best;
Pause ere thou lettest love disturb
    Thy spirit's sunny rest.

For never yet came Love alone,
    Companions strange and sad has he,
Doubts, fears, regrets, and withering tears;—
    And must these be for thee?