The Flower That Smiles Today

by

Percy Bysshe Shelley


The flower that smiles today

Tomorrow dies;

All that we wish to stay

Tempts and then flies;

What is this world's delight?

Lightning, that mocks the night,

Brief even as bright.—


Virtue, how frail it is!—

Friendship, how rare!—

Love, how it sells poor bliss

For proud despair!

But these though soon they fall,

Survive their joy, and all

Which ours we call.


Whilst skies are blue and bright,

Whilst flowers are gay,

Whilst eyes that change ere night

Make glad the day;

Whilst yet the calm hours creep,

Dream thou—and from thy sleep

Then wake to weep.


(1824)



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