Rhymes On The Road. Extract X. Mantua.

A poem by Thomas Moore

Verses of Hippolyta to her Husband.

They tell me thou'rt the favored guest
Of every fair and brilliant throng;
No wit like thine to wake the jest,
No voice like thine to breathe the song.
And none could guess, so gay thou art,
That thou and I are far apart.
Alas, alas! how different flows,
With thee and me the time away!
Not that I wish thee sad, heaven knows--
Still if thou canst, be light and gay;
I only know that without thee
The sun himself is dark for me.

Do I put on the jewels rare
Thou'st always loved to see me wear?
Do I perfume the locks that thou
So oft hast braided o'er my brow,
Thus deckt thro' festive crowds to run,
And all the assembled world to see,--
All but the one, the absent one,
Worth more than present worlds to me!
No, nothing cheers this widowed heart--
My only joy from thee apart,
From thee thyself, is sitting hours
And days before thy pictured form--
That dream of thee, which Raphael's powers
Have made with all but life-breath warm!
And as I smile to it, and say
The words I speak to thee in play,
I fancy from their silent frame,
Those eyes and lips give back the same:
And still I gaze, and still they keep
Smiling thus on me--till I weep!
Our little boy too knows it well,
For there I lead him every day
And teach his lisping lips to tell
The name of one that's far away.
Forgive me, love, but thus alone
My time is cheered while thou art gone.

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