Looking Back

I MAY live long, but some old days
Of dear, deep joy akin to pain,—
Some suns that set on woodland ways
Will never rise for me again.
By shining sea, and glad, green shore
That frolic waves ran home to kiss,
Some words I heard that nevermore
Will thrill me with their mystic bliss.

Oh Love, still throbs your living heart,—
You have not crossed death's sullen tide:
A deeper deep holds us apart:
We were more near if you had died,—
If you had died in those old days
When light was on the shining sea,
And all the fragrant woodland ways
Were paths of hope for you and me.

Dead leaves are in those woodland ways,—
Cold are the lips that used to kiss,—
'T were idle to recall those days,
Or sigh for all that vanished bliss.

Do you still wear your old-time grace,
And charm new loves with ancient wiles?
Could I but watch your faithless face,
I'd know the meaning of your smiles.
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