Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, SELF-INTERROGATION, by EMILY JANE BRONTE



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SELF-INTERROGATION, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: The evening passes fast away
Last Line: "and break in glorious morn! "
Alternate Author Name(s): Bell, Ellis
Subject(s): Time


" THE evening passes fast away,
'Tis almost time to rest;
What thoughts has left the vanished day,
What feelings, in thy breast?

" The vanished day? It leaves a sense
Of labour hardly done;
Of little, gained with vast expense, --
A sense of grief alone!

" Time stands before the door of Death,
Upbraiding bitterly;
And Conscience, with exhaustless breath,
Pours black reproach on me:

" And though I've said that Conscience lies,
And Time should Fate condemn;
Still, sad Repentance clouds my eyes,
And makes me yield to them!

" Then art thou glad to seek repose?
Art glad to leave the sea,
And anchor all thy weary woes
In calm Eternity?

" Nothing regrets to see thee go --
Not one voice sobs ' farewell,'
And where thy heart has suffered so,
Canst thou desire to dwell?"

" Alas! The countless links are strong
That bind us to our clay;
The loving spirit lingers long,
And would not pass away!

" And rest is sweet, when laurelled fame
Will crown the soldier's crest;
But, a brave heart, with a tarnished name,
Would rather fight than rest."

" Well, thou hast fought for many a year,
Hast fought thy whole life through,
Hast humbled Falsehood, trampled Fear;
What is there left to do? "

" 'Tis true, this arm has hotly striven,
Has dared what few would dare;
Much have I done, and freely given,
But little learnt to bear! "

" Look on the grave, where thou must sleep,
Thy last, and strongest foe;
It is endurance not to weep,
If that repose seem woe.

" The long war closing in defeat,
Defeat serenely borne,
Thy midnight rest may still be sweet,
And break in glorious morn! "





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