Littell's Living Age/Volume 136/Issue 1761/How Long?

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If on my grave the summer grass were growing,
Or heedless winter winds across it blowing,
Through joyous June, or desolate December,
How long, sweetheart, how long would you remember —
          How long, dear love, how long?

For brightest eyes would open to the summer,
And sweetest smiles would greet the sweet new-comer,
And on young lips grow kisses for the taking,
When all the summer buds to bloom are breaking —
          How long, dear love, how long?

To the dim land where sad-eyed ghosts walk only,
Where lips are cold, and waiting hearts are lonely,
I would not call you from your youth’s warm blisses,
Fill up your glass and crown it with new kisses —
          How long, dear love, how long?

Too gay in June you might be to regret me,
And living lips might woo you to forget me;
But ah, sweetheart, I think you would remember
When winds were weary in your life’s December —
          So long, dear love, so long.

This work was published before January 1, 1923, and is in the public domain worldwide because the author died at least 100 years ago.