Classic and Contemporary Poetry
YOUTH AND AGE, by JAMES WHITCOMB RILEY Poet's Biography
First Line: When in our blithest youth we
Last Line: In the old eyes -- too glad to weep.
Alternate Author Name(s): Johnson Of Boone, Benj. F.
Subject(s): Aging; Youth
WHEN in our blithest youth we sing,
We sing our saddest -- slack the string
Of music into saddest key,
And sob, with voices quavering
In pangs of melody.
When in maturer years --
When grown acquaint with sighs and tears --
Our voices ring a lighter tone,
Our perverse harp peals o'er the moan --
A paean of hope that lifts and cheers.
And last, in age's bleak extreme,
With youth, life, love, all -- all a dream,
What glad songs leap
To our glad lips -- what raptures gleam
In the old eyes -- too glad to weep.
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