Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, ANTONY TO CLEOPATRA, by ALFRED TENNYSON

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Classic and Contemporary Poetry

ANTONY TO CLEOPATRA, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: O, cleopatra! Fare thee well
Last Line: I hear your voices from the tomb!
Alternate Author Name(s): Tennyson, Lord Alfred; Tennyson, 1st Baron; Tennyson Of Aldworth And Farringford, Baron
Subject(s): Antony, Marc (83-30 B.c.); Cleopatra, Queen Of Egypt (69-30 B.c.); Marcus Antonius; Anthony, Mark

O, CLEOPATRA! fare thee well,
We two can meet no more;
This breaking heart alone can tell
The love to thee I bore.
But wear not thou the conqueror's chain
Upon thy race and thee;
And though we ne'er can meet again,
Yet still be true to me:
For I for thee have lost a throne,
To wear the crown of love alone.

Fair daughter of a regal line!
To thraldom bow not tame;
My every wish on earth was thine,
My every hope the same.
And I have mov'd within thy sphere,
And liv'd within thy light;
And oh! thou wert to me so dear,
I breath'd but in thy sight!
A subject world I lost for thee,
For thou wert all my world to me!

Then when the shriekings of the dying
Were heard along the wave.
Soul of my soul! I saw thee flying;
I follow'd thee, to save.
The thunder of the brazen prows
O'er Actium's ocean rung;
Fame's garland faded from my brows,
Her wreath away I flung.
I sought, I saw, I heard but thee:
For what to love was victory?

Thine on the earth, and on the throne,
And in the grave, am I;
And, dying, still I am thine own,
Thy bleeding Antony.
How shall my spirit joy to hear
That thou art ever true!
Nay -- weep not -- dry that burning tear,
That bathes thine eyes' dark hue.
Shades of my fathers! lo! I come;
I hear your voices from the tomb!

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