Ah, Postumus, we all must go:
This keen North-Easter nips my shoulder;
My strength begins to fail; I know
You find me older;
I've made my Will. Dear, faithful friend--
My Muse's friend and not my purse's!
Who still would hear and still commend
My tedious verses,
How will you live--of these deprived?
I've learned your candid soul. The venal,--
The sordid friend had scarce survived
A test so penal;
But you--Nay, nay, 'tis so. The rest
Are not as you: you hide your merit;
You, more than all, deserve the best
True friends inherit;--
Not gold,--that hearts like yours despise;
Not "spacious dirt" (your own expression),
No; but the rarer, dearer prize--
The Life's Confession!
You catch my thought? What! Can't you guess?
You, you alone, admired my Cantos;--
I've left you, P., my whole MS.,
In three portmanteaus!