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The Works of Lord Byron (ed. Coleridge, Prothero)/Poetry/Volume 3/Hebrew Melodies/Oh! snatched away in Beauty's Bloom



Oh! snatched away in beauty's bloom,
On thee shall press no ponderous tomb;
But on thy turf shall roses rear
Their leaves, the earliest of the year;
And the wild cypress wave in tender gloom:[2]


And oft by yon blue gushing stream
Shall Sorrow lean her drooping head,[3]
And feed deep thought with many a dream,
And lingering pause and lightly tread;
Fond wretch! as if her step disturbed the dead!


Away! we know that tears are vain,
That Death nor heeds nor hears distress:
Will this unteach us to complain?
Or make one mourner weep the less?
And thou—who tell'st me to forget,[4]
Thy looks are wan, thine eyes are wet.[5][6]

[Published in the Examiner, April 23, 1815.]

  1. ["In submitting the melody to his Lordship's judgment, I once inquired in what manner they might refer to any scriptural subject: he appeared for a moment affected—at last replied, 'Every mind must make its own references; there is scarcely one of us who could not imagine that the affliction belongs to himself, to me it certainly belongs.' 'She is no more, and perhaps the only vestige of her existence is the feeling I sometimes fondly indulge.'"—Fugitive Pieces, 1829, p. 30. It has been surmised that the lines contain a final reminiscence of the mysterious Thyrza.]
  2. —— in gentle gloom.—[MS. M.]
  3. Shall Sorrow on the waters gaze,
    And lost in deep remembrance dream,
    As if her footsteps could disturb the dead.—[MS. M.]

  4. Even thou ——.—[MS. M.]
  5. IV.

    Nor need I write to tell the tale,
    My pen were doubly weak;
    Oh what can idle words avail,
    Unless my heart could speak?


    By day or night, in weal or woe,
    That heart no longer free
    Must bear the love it cannot show,
    And silent turn for thee.—[MS. M.]

  6. [Compare "Nay, now, pry'thee weep no more! you know,... that 'tis sinful to murmur at... Providence."—"And should not that reflection check your own, my Blanche?"—"Why are your cheeks so wet? Fie! fie, my child!"—Romantic Tales, by M. G. Lewis, 1808, i. 53.]