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Valentine Poem Collection - 41
The Tear-drop by Robert Burns
Wae is my heart, and the tear's in my e'e;
Lang lang Joy's been a stranger to me:
Forsaken and friendless, my burden I bear,
And the sweet voice o' Pity ne'er sounds in my ear.
Love thou hast pleasures, and deep hae I lov'd;
Love, thou hast sorrows, and sair hae I prov'd;
But this bruised heart that now bleeds in my breast,
I can feel by its throbbings, will soon be at rest.
Of, if I were - where happy I hae been -
Down by yon stream, and yon bonie castle-green;
For there he is wand'ring and musing on me,
Wha wad soon dry the tear frae his Phillis' e'e
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The Betrothed by Rudyard Kipling
Open the old cigar-box, get me a Cuba stout,
For things are running crossways, and Maggie and I are out.
We quarrelled about Havanas -- we fought o'er a good cheroot,
And I knew she is exacting, and she says I am a brute.
Open the old cigar-box -- let me consider a space;
In the soft blue veil of the vapour musing on Maggie's face.
Maggie is pretty to look at -- Maggie's a loving lass,
But the prettiest cheeks must wrinkle, the truest of loves must pass.
There's peace in a Larranaga, there's calm in a Henry Clay;
But the best cigar in an hour is finished and thrown away --
Thrown away for another as perfect and ripe and brown --
But I could not throw away Maggie for fear o' the talk o' the town!
Maggie, my wife at fifty -- grey and dour and old --
With never another Maggie to purchase for love or gold!
And the light of Days that have Been the dark of the Days that Are,
And Love's torch stinking and stale, like the butt of a dead cigar --
The butt of a dead cigar you are bound to keep in your pocket --
With never a new one to light tho' it's charred and black to the socket!
Open the old cigar-box -- let me consider a while.
Here is a mild Manila -- there is a wifely smile.
Which is the better portion -- bondage bought with a ring,
Or a harem of dusky beauties, fifty tied in a string?
Counsellors cunning and silent -- comforters true and tried,
And never a one of the fifty to sneer at a rival bride?
Thought in the early morning, solace in time of woes,
Peace in the hush of the twilight, balm ere my eyelids close,
This will the fifty give me, asking nought in return,
With only a Suttee's passion -- to do their duty and burn.
This will the fifty give me. When they are spent and dead,
Five times other fifties shall be my servants instead.
The furrows of far-off Java, the isles of the Spanish Main,
When they hear my harem is empty will send me my brides again.
I will take no heed to their raiment, nor food for their mouths withal,
So long as the gulls are nesting, so long as the showers fall.
I will scent 'em with best vanilla, with tea will I temper their hides,
And the Moor and the Mormon shall envy who read of the tale of my brides.
For Maggie has written a letter to give me my choice between
The wee little whimpering Love and the great god Nick o' Teen.
And I have been servant of Love for barely a twelvemonth clear,
But I have been Priest of Cabanas a matter of seven year;
And the gloom of my bachelor days is flecked with the cheery light
Of stumps that I burned to Friendship and Pleasure and Work and Fight.
And I turn my eyes to the future that Maggie and I must prove,
But the only light on the marshes is the Will-o'-the-Wisp of Love.
Will it see me safe through my journey or leave me bogged in the mire?
Since a puff of tobacco can cloud it, shall I follow the fitful fire?
Open the old cigar-box -- let me consider anew --
Old friends, and who is Maggie that I should abandon you?
A million surplus Maggies are willing to bear the yoke;
And a woman is only a woman, but a good Cigar is a Smoke.
Light me another Cuba -- I hold to my first-sworn vows.
If Maggie will have no rival, I'll have no Maggie for Spouse!
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Musicks Empire by Andrew Marvell
First was the World as one great Cymbal made,
Where Jarring Windes to infant Nature plaid.
All Musick was a solitary sound,
To hollow Rocks and murm'ring Fountains bound.
Jubal first made the wilder Notes agree;
And Jubal tun'd Musicks Jubilee:
He call'd the Ecchoes from their sullen Cell,
And built the Organs City where they dwell.
Each sought a consort in that lovely place;
And Virgin Trebles wed the manly Base.
From whence the Progeny of numbers new
Into harmonious Colonies withdrew.
Some to the Lute, some to the Viol went,
And others chose the Cornet eloquent.
These practising the Wind, and those the Wire,
To sing Mens Triumphs, or in Heavens quire.
Then Musick, the Mosaique of the Air,
Did of all these a Solemn noise prepare:
With which She gain'd the Empire of the Ear,
Including all between the Earth and Sphear.
Victorious Sounds. yet here your Homage do
Unto a gentler Conqueror then you;
Who though He flies the Musick of his praise,
Would with you Heavens Hallelujahs raise.
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The Parcæ; or, Three Dainty Destinies by Robert Herrick
Three lovely sisters working were,
As they were closely set,
Of soft and dainty maidenhair
A curious armillet.
I, smiling, asked them what they did,
Fair destinies all three,
Who told me they had drawn a thread
Of life, and 'twas for me.
They showd me then how fine 'twas spun,
And I replid thereto,—
'I care not now how soon 'tis done,
Or cut, if cut by you'.
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The Schoolboy by William Blake
I love to rise in a summer morn
When the birds sing on every tree;
The distant huntsman winds his horn,
And the skylark sings with me.
O! what sweet company!
But to go to school on a summer morn,
O! it drives all joy away;
Under a cruel eye outworn,
The little ones spend the day
In sighing and dismay.
Ah! then at times I drooping sit,
And spend many an anxious hour,
Nor in my book can I take delight,
Nor sit in learning's bower,
Worn thro' with the dreary shower.
How can the bird that is born for joy
Sit in a cage and sing?
How can a child, when fears annoy,
But droop his tender wing,
And forget his youthful spring?
O! father and mother, if buds are nipped
And blossoms blown away,
And if the tender plants are stripped
Of their joy in the springing day,
By sorrow and care's dismay,
How shall the summer arise in joy,
Or the summer's fruits appear?
Or how shall we gather what griefs destroy,
Or bless the mellowing year,
When the blasts of winter appear?
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