Sixty to Sixteen

A poem by Victor James Daley

If I were young as you, Sixteen,
And you were old as I,
I would not be as I have been,
You would not be so shy,
We should not watch with careless mien
The golden days go by,
If I were young as you, Sixteen,
And you were old as I.

The years of youth are yours, Sixteen;
Such years of old had I,
But time has set his seal between
Dark eyebrow and dark eye.
Sere grow the leaves that once were green,
The song turns to a sigh:
Ah! very young are you, Sixteen,
And very old am I.

Red bloom-times come and go, Sixteen,
With snow-soft feet, but I
Shall be no more as I have been
In times of bloom gone by;
For dimmer grows the pleasant scene
Beneath the pleasant sky;
The world is growing old, Sixteen,
The weary world and I.

Ah, would that once again, Sixteen,
A kissing mouth had I;
The days would gaily go, I ween,
Though death should stand anigh,
If springtime’s green were evergreen,
If Love would never die,
And I were young as you, Sixteen,
And you were old as I.

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