WITH Poesy's fair chains I strive to bind

In one ripe golden sheaf, a wealth

Of words to tell how 'fore my startled mind,

Not with a gentle and soul-soothing stealth,

But dazzlingly, there swept so much of grace

And beauty, - but in vain; and my poor soul,

Deep drained of all its joy, can scarce embrace

In its enfeebled grasp life's crumpled roll,

Half written o'er with pleasure, half with pain.

Yet all the characters of grief engraven

Upon that scroll with iron style I fain

Would read, if graven by her hand, let Heaven

Itself the words of pleasure trace and promise give

Of grace, if robbed of her sweet presence I must live.