They say, that esteem is a diamond so bright

They say, that esteem is a diamond so bright,
It enkindles the eye that by sorrow is shaded;
But glory to me is the sun's dazzling light,
That illumines a world, which in darkness had faded.

You may dwell on esteem's twinkling diamond who will,
And love the faint gleam of its scarce-living fire:
I gaze on the sun's dazzling brilliancy still,
And ask no esteem if the world but admire.

Esteem is the dew-drop that freshens the flower;
Admiration, the arched hues that splendidly shine.
The one is a sprinkle, the other a shower,—
Let mine be the rainbow, the dew may be thine.

Esteem is a maiden, whose blue, melting eye,
When she smiles or she weeps, all in languishment moves;
Admiration, a beauty, whose love-arrows fly,
Like the falcon-glance, killing wherever she roves.

One's cheek is a rose, that is shaded with dew;
The other's a russet, with vermeil tints brightening.
One's eye is an orb, softly, tearfully blue;
The other's jet-black, but it flashes like lightning.

One's air is so melting, so mournfully sweet,
You love, and you pity, but cannot admire;
In the other, such soul-killing blandishments meet,
That she wakes in the breast every wild-raging fire.

Then talk as they will of esteem's gentle form,
Of those eyes, that so tenderly, meltingly roll:
Let mine be the sun-burst, the bolt of the storm,
That dazzles, astounds, and subdues every soul.
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