Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, MANIAC'S SONG, by JOHN GARDINER CALKINS BRAINARD

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MANIAC'S SONG, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: I can but smile when others weep
Last Line: Than all the smiles I ever knew.
Subject(s): Insanity; Madness; Mental Illness

I CAN but smile when others weep,
I can but weep when others smile;
O! let me in this bosom keep
The secret of my heart awhile.
My form was fair, my step was light,
As ever tripped the dance along;
My cheek was smooth, my eye was bright--
My thought was wild, my heart was young.
And he I loved would laugh with glee,
And every heart but mine was glad;
He had a smile for all but me;
O! he was gay, and I was sad!
Now, I have lost my blooming health,
And joy, and hope, no more abide;
And wildering fancies come by stealth,
Like moonlight on a shifting tide.
They say he wept, when he was told
That I was sad and sorrowful;
That on my wrist the chain was cold --
That at my heart the blood was dull.
They fear I'm crazed -- they need not fear,
For smiles are false, and tears are true;
I better love to see a tear,
Than all the smiles I ever knew.

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