Lines Written In A Young Lady's Album

Category: Poetry
'Tis not in youth, when life is new, when but to live is sweet,
When Pleasure strews her starlike flow'rs beneath our careless feet,
When Hope, that has not been deferred, first waves its golden wings,
And crowds the distant future with a thousand lovely things; -

When if a transient grief o'ershades the spirit for a while,
The momentary tear that falls is followed by a smile;
Or if a pensive mood, at times, across the bosom steals,
It scarcely sighs, so gentle is the pensiveness it feels

It is not then the, restless soul will seek for one with whom
To share whatever lot it bears, its gladness or its gloom, -
Some trusting, tried, and gentle heart, some true and faithful breast,
Whereon its pinions it may fold, and claim a place of rest.

But oh! when comes the icy chill that freezes o'er the heart,
When, one by one, the joys we shared, the hopes we held, depart;
When friends, like autumn's withered leaves, have fallen by our side,
And life, so pleasant once, becomes a desert wild and wide; -

As for her olive branch the dove swept o'er the sullen wave,
That rolled above the olden world - its death-robe and its grave! -
So will the spirit search the earth for some kind, gentle one,
With it to share her destiny, and make it all her own!

Available translations:

English (Original)