Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, LIFE [AND DEATH], by ANNA LETITIA BARBAULD

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Classic and Contemporary Poetry

LIFE [AND DEATH], by                 Poet's Biography
First Line: Life! I know not what thou art
Last Line: Bid me good morning.
Alternate Author Name(s): Aikin, Anna Letitia
Subject(s): Death; Religion; Dead, The; Theology

Life! I know not what thou art,
But know that thou and I must part;
And when, or how, or where we met
I own to me's a secret yet.
But this I know, when thou art fled,
Where'er they lay these limbs, this head,
No clod so valueless shall be,
As all that then remains of me.
O, whither, whither dost thou fly,
Where bend unseen thy trackless course,
And in this strange divorce,
Ah, tell where I must seek this compound I?
To the vast ocean of empyreal flame,
From whence thy essence came,
Dost thou thy flight pursue, when freed
From matter's base uncumbering weed?
Or dost thou, hid from sight,
Wait, like some spell-bound knight,
Through blank, oblivious years the appointed hour
To break thy trance and reassume thy power?
Yet canst thou, without thought of feeling be?
O, say what art thou, when no more thou'rt thee?
Life! we've been long together,
Through pleasant and through cloudy weather;
'T is hard to part when friends are dear, --
Perhaps 't will cost a sigh, a tear:
Then steal away, give little warning,
Choose thine own time;
Say not Good Night, -- but in some brighter clime
Bid me Good Morning.

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