Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, ON THE DEATH OF QUEEN CHARLOTTE 1818, by ROBERT SOUTHEY



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ON THE DEATH OF QUEEN CHARLOTTE 1818, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: Death has gone up into our palaces
Last Line: May best deserve our love.
Subject(s): Charlotte Augusta, Princess (D. 1817); Courts & Courtiers; Death; Epitaphs; George Iii, King Of England (1738-1820); Grief; Marriage; Silence; Dead, The; Sorrow; Sadness; Weddings; Husbands; Wives


DEATH has gone up into our Palaces!
The light of day once more
Hath visited the last abode
Of mortal royalty,
The dark and silent vault.

But not as when the silence of that vault
Was interrupted last
Doth England raise her loud lament,
Like one by sudden grief
Surprised and overcome.

Then with a passionate sorrow we bewail'd
Youth on the untimely bier;
And hopes which seem'd like flower-buds full,
Just opening to the sun,
For ever swept away.

The heart then struggled with repining thoughts,
With feelings that almost
Arraign'd the inscrutable decree,
Embittered by a sense
Of that which might have been.

This grief hath no repining; all is well,
What hath been, and what is.
The Angel of Deliverance came
To one who full of years
Awaited her release.

All that our fathers in their prayers desired,
When first their chosen Queen
Set on our shores her happy feet,
All by indulgent Heaven
Had largely been vouchsafed.

At Court the Household Virtues had their place;
Domestic Purity
Maintain'd her proper influence there:
The marriage bed was blest,
And length of days was given.

No cause for sorrow then, but thankfulness;
Life's business well perform'd,
When weary age full willingly
Resigns itself to sleep,
In sure and certain hope!

Oh end to be desired, whene'er, as now,
Good works have gone before,
The seasonable fruit of Faith;
And good Report, and good
Example have survived.

Her left hand knew not of the ample alms
Which her right hand had done;
And therefore in the aweful hour,
The promises were hers
To secret bounty made.

With more than royal honours to the tomb
Her bier is borne; with more
Than Pomp can claim, or Power bestow;
With blessings and with prayers
From many a grateful heart.

Long, long then shall Queen Charlotte's name be dear;
And future Queens to her
As to their best examplar look;
Who imitates her best
May best deserve our love.





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