Time, who with soft pale ashes veils the brand
Of many a hope that flared against the sky
To plant its heaven-storming banners high,
Has touched you with no desecrating hand;
Your beauty wins a ripeness sweet and bland
As opulent summer, and your glancing eye
Glows with a deeper lustre, and your sigh
Of love is still my clamouring heart’s command.
Yet what if all your fairness were defaced,
Wilted by passionate whirlwinds, battle-scarred,
Your skin of delicate satin hard and dry?
Still you would be the laughing girl who graced
A gloomy manhood, by forebodings marred,
In the deep wood where still we love to lie.