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TIME'S CHANGES.

I saw her once—so freshly fair

That, like a blossom just unfolding, She open'd to Life's cloudless air ;

And Nature joy'd to view its moulding : Her smile it haunts my memory yet

Her cheek's fine hue divinely glowingHer rosebud mouth—her eyes of jet

Around on all their light bestowing: Oh! who could look on such a form,

So nobly free, so softly tender, And darkly dream that earthly storm

Should dim such sweet, delicious splendor! For in her mien, and in her face,

And in her young step's fairy lightness, Naught could the raptured gazer trace

But Beauty's glow, and Pleasure's brightness.

I saw her twice—an alter'd charm

But still of magic, richest, rarest, Than girlhood's talisman less warm,

Though yet of earthly sights the fairest :

Upon her breast she held a child,

The very image of its mother ; Which ever to her smiling smiled,

They seem'd to live but in each other :But matron cares, or lurking wo,

Her thoughtless, sinless look had banish’d, And from her cheek the roseate glow

Of girlhood's balmy morn had vanish’d; Within her eyes, upon her brow,

Lay something softer, fonder, deeper, As if in dreams some vision'd wo

Had broke the Elysium of the sleeper.

I saw her thrice-Fate's dark decree

In widow's garments had array'd her, Yet beautiful she seem'd to be,

As even my reveries portrayed her; The glow, the glance had pass’d away,

The sunshine and the sparkling glitter; Still, though I noted pale decay,

The retrospect was scarcely bitter; For, in their place a calmness dwelt,

Serene, subduing, soothing, holy; In feeling which, the bosom felt

That every louder mirth is follyA pensiveness, which is not grief,

A stillness—as of sunset streaming, A fairy glow on flower and leaf,

Till earth looks on like a landscape dreaming. A last time—and unmoved she lay,

Beyond Life’s dim, uncertain river, A glorious mould of fading clay,

From whence the spark had fled for ever! I gazed—my breast was like to burst

And, as I thought of years departed, The years wherein I saw her first,

When she, a girl, was tender-hearted— . And, when I mused on later days,

As moved she in her matron duty, A happy mother, in the blaze

Of ripen'd hope, and sunny beautyI felt the chill-I turn'd aside

Bleak Desolation's cloud came o'er me, And Being seem'd a troubled tide,

Whose wrecks in darkness swam before me! GOOD NIGHT,

Good night to thee, lady!—though many

Have join'd in the dance to-night, Thy form was the fairest of any,

Where all was seducing and bright; Thy smile was the softest and dearest,

Thy form the most sylph-like of all, And thy voice the most gladsome and clearest

Good night to thee, lady !—'tis over

The waltz, the quadrille, and the song

The heartless adieu of the throng;
The heart that was throbbing with pleasure,

The eye-lid that long'd for repose-
The beaux that were dreaming of treasure,

The girls that were dreaming of beaux.

'Tis over—the lights are all dying,

The coaches all driving away; And many a fair one is sighing,

And many a false one is gay;

And Beauty counts over her numbers

Of conquests, as homeward she drives— And some are gone home to their slumbers,

And some are gone home to their wives.

And I, while my cab in the shower

Is waiting, the last at the door, Am looking all round for the flower

That fell from your wreath on the floor. I'll keep it—if but to remind me,

Though withered and faded its hueWherever next season may find me

Of England-of Almack's—and you !

There are tones that will haunt us, though lonely

Our path be o'er mountain or sea;
There are looks that will part from us only

When memory ceases to be;
There are hopes which our burden can lighten,

Though toilsome and steep be the way;
And dreams that, like moonlight, can brighten

With a light that is clearer than day.

There are names that we cherish, though nameless ;

For aye on the lip they may be ; There are hearts that, though fetter'd, are tameless,

And thoughts unexpress’d, but still free! And some are too grave for a rover,

And some for a husband too light. — The ball and my dream are all overGood night to thee, lady! good night!

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