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For there I took the last fareweel
O' my sweet Highland Mary.
How sweetly bloom'd the gay green birk,
How rich the hawthorn's blossom,
I clasp'd her to my bosom !
Flew o'er me and my dearie ;
Was my sweet Highland Mary.
Wi' mony a vow, and lock'd embrace,
Our parting was fu' tender;
We tore oursels asunder ;
That nipp'd my flower sae early !
That wraps my Highland Mary.
Oh pale, pale now, those rosy lips
I aft ha'e kiss'd sae fondly,
That dwelt on me sae kindly!
That heart that lo'ed me dearly; But still within my bosom's core
Shall live my Highland Mary.
WHEN all the world is young,
lad, And all the trees are green ; And every goose a swan, lad,
And every lass a queen ; Then hey for boot and horse, lad,
And round the world away;
When all the world is old, lad,
And all the trees are brown ;
And all the wheels run down :
The spent and maimed among :
You loved when all was young.
At Paris it was, at the opera there ;
And she look'd like a queen in a book that night, With the wreath of pearl in her raven hair,
And the brooch on her breast so bright.
Of all the operas that Verdi wrote,
The best, to my taste, is the Trovatore; And Mario can soothe, with a tenor note,
The souls in purgatory.
The moon on the tower slept soft as snow;
And who was not thrill'd in the strangest way, As we heard him sing, while the gas burn'd low,
“ Non ti scordar di me” ?
The emperor there, in his box of state,
Look'd grave, as if he had just then seen The red flag wave from the city gate,
Where his eagles in bronze had been.
The empress, too, had a tear in her
To the old glad life in Spain.
Well, there in our front-row box we sat
Together, my bride betroth'd and I; My gaze was fixed on my opera-hat,
And hers on the stage hard by.
And both were silent, and both were sad;
Like a queen she lean’d on her full white arm, With that regal, indolent air she had,
So confident of her charm!
I have not a doubt she
was thinking then Of her former lord,
good soul that he
was, Who died the richest
and roundest of
men, The Marquis of Car
I hope that, to get to the
kingdom of heaven, “ LIKE A QUEEN SHE LEAN'D ON HER Through a needle's
eye he had not to
pass; I wish him well, for the jointure given
To my lady of Carabas.
Meanwhile, I was thinking of my first love,
As I had not been thinking of aught for years, Till over my eyes there began to move
Something that felt like tears.
I thought of the dress that she wore last time,
When we stood ’neath the cypress trees together. In that lost land, in that soft clime,
In the crimson evening weather;
Of that muslin dress (for the eve was hot),
And her warm white neck in its golden chain, And her full, soft hair, just tied in a knot,
And falling loose again;
And the jasmine flower in her fair young breast,
(Oh, the faint, sweet smell of that jasmine flower !) And the one bird singing alone to his nest,
And the one star over the tower.
I thought of our little quarrels and strife,
And the letter that brought me back my ring; And it all seem'd then, in the waste of life,
Such a very little thing !
For I thought of her grave below the hill,
Which the sentinel cypress tree stands over, And I thought, “ Were she only living still,
How I could forgive her, and love her!”
And I swear, as I thought of her thus, in that hour,
And of how, after all, old things were best, That I smelt the smell of that jasmine flower
Which she used to wear in her breast.
It smelt so faint, and it smelt so sweet,
It made me creep, and it made me cold;