Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, TO A PROFILE, by BERNARD BARTON



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First Line: I knew thee not! Then wherefore gaze
Last Line: To bless thee, whom I never knew!
Alternate Author Name(s): Quaker Poet
Subject(s): Silhouettes


I KNEW thee not! then wherefore gaze
Upon thy silent shadow there,
Which so imperfectly portrays
The form thy features used to wear?
Yet have I often look'd at thee,
As if those lips could speak to me.

I knew thee not! and thou couldst know,
At best, but little more of one
Whose pilgrimage on earth below
Commenced, just ere thine own was done;
For few and fleeting days were thine,
To hope or fear for lot of mine.

Yet few and fleeting as they were,
Fancy and feeling picture this,
They prompted many a fervent prayer,
Witness'd, perchance, a parting kiss;
And might not kiss, and prayer, from thee,
At such a period, profit me?

Whether they did or not, I owe
At least this tribute to thy worth;
Though little all I can bestow,
Yet fond affection gives it birth;
And prompts me, as thy shade I view,
To bless thee, whom I never knew!





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