The love of youth, the hope of better years,
The source of softest wishes, tenderest fears.
The only living thing he could not hate.
Was reft at once—and he deserv'd his fate.
But did not feel it less;—the good explore,
For peace, those realms where guilt can never soar:
The proud—the wayward—who have fixed below
Their joy—and find this earth enough for woe,1800
Lose in that one their all—perchance a mite—
But who in patience parts with all delight?
Full many a stoic eye and aspect stern
Mask hearts where grief hath little left to learn;
And many a withering thought lies hid—not lost—
In smiles that least befit who wear them most.
By those, that deepest feel, are ill exprest
The indistinctness of the suffering breast;
Where thousand thoughts begin to end in one,
Which seeks from all the refuge found in none;1810
No words suffice the secret soul to show.
And Truth denies all eloquence to Woe.