When First That Smile. (Venetian Air.)

A poem by Thomas Moore

When first that smile, like sunshine, blest my sight,
Oh what a vision then came o'er me!
Long years of love, of calm and pure delight,
Seemed in that smile to pass before me.
Ne'er did the peasant dream of summer skies,
Of golden fruit and harvests springing,
With fonder hope than I of those sweet eyes,
And of the joy their light was bringing.

Where now are all those fondly-promised hours?
Ah! woman's faith is like her brightness--
Fading as fast as rainbows or day-flowers,
Or aught that's known for grace and lightness.
Short as the Persian's prayer, at close of day,
Should be each vow of Love's repeating;
Quick let him worship Beauty's precious ray--
Even while he kneels, that ray is fleeting!

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