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Classic and Contemporary Poetry

SIR EUSTACE GREY (SEE CRABBE), by                 Poet Analysis     Poet's Biography
First Line: When I die, oh lay me low
Last Line: Death is immortality.
Alternate Author Name(s): Alleyne, Ellen; Rossetti, Christina
Subject(s): Crabbe, George (1754-1832); Death; Fear; Graves; Life; Love; Dead, The; Tombs; Tombstones

When I die, oh lay me low
Where the greenest grasses grow;
Where the happy stream meanders;
Where the deer securely wanders;
Where the sweet birds sit and sing
In the branches quivering;
Where the violets spring to die,
And the breezes passing by,
Laden with their fragrant breath,
Scarcely seem to tell of death;
Where the sun can dart no ray
In the noon-tide of his day;
Where upon the fertile ground
Broods an everlasting shade,
And a strange, mysterious sound
By the rustling boughs is made,
And all's quiet, meet for one
Whose long, toilsome race is run.
O'er my grave the turf extend,
But beside me lay no friend,
And above me place no stone;
I would lie there all alone,
Unremembered or unknown.
Soon forgotten, none will taunt me;
Soon forgetting, none will haunt me
Of the ghosts of former pleasures
Meted out with scanty measures.
Resting from all human passion,
From earth's hate and its compassion,
From its hope and fear, from love
Stedfast as the stars above,
That shine clearly down for ever
On some cold, unglowing river;
By my faith and hope sure lighted
Through the darkness of the tomb;
And by Heavenly Love requited
For whatever love was slighted,
And whatever joy was blighted
By earth's coldness and its gloom,
In the grave I'll rest secure
Till the appointed time is o'er,
And the work of love is done,
And the great sin; and the sun
Sets in night to rise no more.
What is life but toil and riot?
What is death but rest and quiet?
Life is but a dream of trouble,
Death calm sleep from visions free;
Life is but a bursting bubble,
Death is immortality.

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