Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, ON THE RIVER, by PHOEBE CARY

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Classic and Contemporary Poetry

ON THE RIVER, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: Darling, while the tender moon
Last Line: Of two souls made one forever!
Subject(s): Love

DARLING, while the tender moon
Of this soft, delicious June,
Watches o'er thee like a lover;
While we journey to the sea, Silently,
Let me tell my story over.

Ah! how clear before my sight
Rises up that summer night,
When I told thee first my passion;
And the little crimson streak, In thy cheek,
Showed thy love in comeliest fashion.

When I pleaded for reply,
Silent lip and downcast eye,
Turning from me both dissembled;
But the lily hand that shone In mine own,
Like a lily softly trembled.

And the pretty words that passed
O'er thy coral lips at last,
Still as precious pearls I treasure;
And the payment lovers give, While I live,
Shall be given thee without measure.

For I may not offer thee
Such poor words as mine must be;
I perforce must speak my blisses
In the language of mine eyes, Mixed with sighs,
And the tender speech of kisses.

Heart, encompassed in my heart!
Hopeful, happy as thou art,
Will I keep and ne'er forsake thee;
Yea, my love shall hold thee fast, Till the last,
So that heaven alone can take thee!

And if sorrow ever spread
Threatening showers o'er thy head,
All about thee will I gather,
Whatsoever things are bright, That thy sight
May be tempted earthward rather;

From thy pathway, for love's sake,
Carefully my hand will take,
Every thorn anear it growing;
And my lamb within my arms, Safe from harms,
Will I shield when winds are blowing.

Fairest woman, holiest saint!
If my words of praise could paint
Thee, as liberal Nature made thee;
All who saw my picture, sweet, Would repeat,
"He who painted, loved the lady!"

Has the wide world anything
Thou wilt take or I may bring,
I will treat no work disdainful;
Set me some true lover's task, Dearest, ask
Any service, sweet or painful.

If it please thee, over me,
Practice petty tyranny,
Punish me as for misdoing,
Let me make of penitence Sad pretense,
At thy feet for pardon suing.

Darling, all our life must be,
Thou with me, and I with thee,
Calm as this delicious weather;
We will keep our honeymoon Every June,
Voyaging through life together.

You and me, we used to say,
We were two but yesterday;
We were as the sea and river;
Now our lives have all the sweetness, And completeness
Of two souls made one forever!

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