Poems of Letitia Elizabeth Landon (L. E. L.) from Flowers of Loveliness, 1838/The Canterbury Bell

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2446150Flowers of Loveliness, 1838 — The Canterbury BellLetitia Elizabeth Landon


Artist Louisa SeyffarthEngraver H. Robinson

From Tait’s Edinburgh Magazine, December 1837, page 796


" 'I see it grow beneath my hand,
    I see it day by day,
I measure on its purple wand
    How long he is away.

" 'The seed was sleeping in the earth,
    The snow was on the ground,
And Christmas gathered in its mirth
    The friends now scattered round.

" 'It was the time of thy farewell,
    Cold, wintry, dead—and now
The violets are in the dell,
    The May upon the bough.

" 'We sowed its seed when winds were chill,
    The plant now grown so fair;
We placed it on the window-sill,
    To catch the sun and air!

" 'You said you would return again
    Before it was in bloom—
Alas! it sheds its light in vain
    Around our altered room.

" 'My heart is sick with hope deferred,
    Days, weeks pass slowly o’er—
Alas! one voice is still unheard,
    One step returns no more!

" 'I'm weary of these watching hours,
    That fret my life away;
I do not love my favourite flowers;
    I loathe the sunny day.

" 'Is not the heart a sacred thing?
    Is it not Love that gives
The shadow of an angel's wing,
    Where'er its presence lives?

" 'I gave my heart, I thought, for thine—
    Mine was the gift alone;
Why have the false no outward sign
    By which they may be known?

" 'Fair flower, that I have wept to see
    Day after day arise;
I little thought that thou wouldst be
    Welcomed with tearful eyes!

" 'Why should there be divided truth?
    Ah! why should one love on?
I'm weary—weary of my youth,
    Whose happiness is gone!'

" A light step makes her start the while,
    She sees her sister stand
Beside the gate, with eager smile,
    A letter in her hand.

" Poor girl! she might have spared the blush
    That with the letter came;
She took the scroll—pale grew the flush,—
    It did not bear his name!"