Lines, Written in Miss Sarah Gayle's Album


Thine hand, dear little maiden! let me see:
How run the mystic lines of destiny?
The face, too, I must look upon, for there
I used to read more plainly of the fair.
With face and hand, those tell-tales of the heart,
If I have not forgotten all my art,
I may some secrets of thy fate impart.

Now my divining's done — list to the lay
That tells the fortune of thy future day.

Sarah Gayle! thou wilt be fair,
So a thousand youths shall swear;
And beloved thou shalt be,
And be-rhymed incessantly;
Light the task for lover pale
To sing of lovely Sarah Gayle:
Never will his numbers fail
To tell the charms of Sarah Gayle.
See, they come o'er hill and dale
To gaze in love on Sarah Gayle,
And teach each Alabamian vale
To echo to the name of Gayle.
From distant lands they'll spread the sail,
Hoping to catch a favoring Gayle;
In summer's heat they'll wish a Gayle,
And e'en in winter's storm and hail
They'll still desire to have a Gayle
If thou should'st frown, they'll sadly wail
With broken hearts for Sarah Gayle;
And many a heavy cotton bale
They'll count light price for smile of Gayle.
Sarah Gayle! thou wilt be kind,
And perhaps one day inclined
To take a name more to thy mind
Than one that is so much be-rhymed.

Sarah Gayle! be wise as fair;
E'er thou make that change, beware,
And when thou giv'st away thy name,
Give thy heart also to the claim
Of one who comes with heart as pure
As that he seeks, and name as sure
Unstained and honored to endure.
Sarah Gayle! be good as fair:
Look to heaven — thy home is there;
May this be proph'cy — 't is my prayer.
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