Music

A poem by William Lisle Bowles

O Music! if thou hast a charm
That may the sense of pain disarm,
Be all thy tender tones addressed
To soothe to peace my Harriet's breast;
And bid the magic of thy strain
So still the wakeful throb of pain,
That, rapt in the delightful measure,
Sweet Hope again may whisper pleasure,
And seem the notes of Spring to hear,
Prelusive to a happier year!
And if thy magic can restore
The shade of days that smile no more,
And softer, sweeter colours give
To scenes that in remembrance live;
Be to her pensive heart a friend,
And, whilst the tender shadows blend,
Recall, ere the brief trace be lost,
Each moment that she prized the most.
Perhaps, when many a cheerful day
Hereafter shall have stolen away,
If then some old and favourite strain
Should bring back to her thoughts again
The hours when, silent by her side,
I listened to her song and sighed;
Perhaps a long-forgotten name,
A thought, if not a tear may claim;
And when in distant plains away,
Alone I count each lingering day,
She may a silent prayer prefer
For him whose heart once bled for her.

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