Littell's Living Age/Volume 144/Issue 1863/Dirge, after Herrick

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Originally published in Fraser's Magazine.


after Herrick

She is dead; but do not weep,
Nor thick not so for her
This fair sunlight with thy sighs;
She is gently gone asleep;
Peace now, lest thy fretful stir
Fright the soft dew from her eyes.

Look upon her gentle face,
Love and quiet thoughts are there;
See how yet some latest smile
Makes of her lips a lurking-place,
Faintly courts thee, would beguile
Thy so sick despair.

Lay her sweet i' the earth;
No flower which breath of the next spring
Calls from the bare turf above her,
Is half so fresh, so pure a thing;
Her life was all an innocent mirth,
Then sweetest, being over.

Death bath taken but to save;
Sweet her maid-mates! hither and strew
Over her virgin grave
Flowers, not yew.
Here no painful heart be throbbing!
No voice go out in wildered sobbing!
No idle eye drop here
The profanation of a tear!
Only — if't must be so — a sigh,
Yet more for love than misery.