Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, AN INVITE TO ETERNITY, by JOHN CLARE



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AN INVITE TO ETERNITY, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: Say, wilt thou go with me sweet maid
Last Line: We are wed to one eternity.
Subject(s): Consolation; Courtship; Future Life; Retribution; Eternity; After Life


Say, wilt thou go with me, sweet maid
Say, maiden, wilt thou go with me
Through the valley depths of shade,
Of night and dark obscurity,
Where the path has lost its way,
Where the sun forgets the day, --
Where there's nor light nor life to see,
Sweet maiden, wilt thou go with me?

Where stones will turn to flooding streams,
Where plains will rise like ocean waves,
Where life will fade like visioned dreams
And mountains darken into caves,
Say, maiden, wilt thou go with me
Through this sad non-identity,
Where parents live and know us not?
And sisters live and know is not?

Say, maiden, wilt thou go with me
In the strange death-in-life to be,
To live in death and be the same
Without this life, or home, or name,
At once to be and not to be --
That was and is not, - yet to see
Things pass like shadows, and the sky
Above, below, around us lie?

The land of shadows wilt thou trace,
And look - nor know each other's face;
The present marred with reason gone,
And past and present all as one?
Say, maiden, can thy life be led
To join the living with the dead?
Then trace thy footsteps on with me;
We are wed to one eternity.




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