The Love-Letters

(In Memoriam H.R.)

I met him quite by accident
In a bye-path that he'd frequent.
And, as he neared, the sunset glow
Warmed up the smile of pleasantry
Upon his too thin face, while he
Held a square packet up to me,
Of what, I did not know.

" Well," said he then; " they are my old letters.
Perhaps she — rather felt them fetters. . . .
You see, I am in a slow decline,
And she's broken off with me. Quite right
To send them back, and true foresight;
I'd got too fond of her! To-night
I burn them — stuff of mine!"

He laughed in the sun — an ache in his laughter —
And went. I heard of his death soon after.
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