To--

by

Edgar Allan Poe


Should my early life seem,

(As well it might,) a dream--

Yet I build no faith upon

The king Napoleon--

I look not up afar

To my destiny in a star:


In parting from you now

Thus much I will avow--

There are beings, and have been

Whom my spirit had not seen

Had I let them pass me by

With a dreaming eye--

If my peace had flown away

In a night--or in a day--

In a vision--or in none--

Is it the less gone?--


I am standing 'mid the roar

Of a weather-beaten shore,

And I hold within my hand

Some particles of sand--

How few! and how they creep

Thro' my fingers to the deep!

My early hopes? no--they

Went gloriously away,

Like lightning from the sky

At once--and so will I.


So young? ah! no--not now--

Thou hast not seen my brow,

But they tell me I am proud--

They lie--they lie aloud--

My bosom beats with shame

At the paltriness of name

With which they dare combine

A feeling such as mine--

Nor Stoic? I am not:

In the terror of my lot

I laugh to think how poor

That pleasure "to endure!"

What! shade of Zeno!--I!

Endure!--no--no--defy.


(1829)



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