George Pope Morris ( )

The Deserted Bride

Suggested by a scene in the play of the hunchback.

Inscribed to James Sheridan Knowles.

"Love me!No.He never loved me!"
 Else he'd sooner die than stain
One so fond as he has proved me
 With the hollow world's disdain.
False one, gomy doom is spoken,
And the spell that bound me broken.

Wed him!Never.He has lost me!
 Tears!Well, let them flow!His bride?
No.The struggle life may cost me!
 But he'll find that I have pride!
Love is not an idle flower,
Blooms and dies the self-same hour.

Title, land, and broad dominion,
 With himself to me he gave;
Stooped to earth his spirit's pinion,
 And became my willing slave!
Knelt and prayed until he won me
Looks he coldly upon me?

Ingrate!Never sure was maiden
 Deeply wronged as I. With grief
My true breast is overladen
 Tears afford me no relief
Every nerve is strained and aching,
And my very heart is breaking!

Love I him?Thus scorned and slighted
 Thrown, like worthless weed, apart
Hopes and feelings seared and blighted
 Love him?Yes, with all my heart!
With a passion superhuman
Constancy, "thy name is woman."

Love, nor time, nor mood, can fashion
 Love?Idolatry's the word
To speak the broadest, deepest passion,
 Ever woman's heart hath stirred!
Vain to still the mind's desires,
Which consume like hidden fires!

Wrecked and wretched, lost and lonely,
 Crushed by grief's oppressive weight
With a prayer for Clifford only,
 I resign me to my fate.
Chains that bind the soul I've proven
Strong as they were iron woven.

Deep the wo that fast is sending
 From my cheek its healthful bloom;
Sad my thoughts as willows bending
 O'er the borders of the tomb!
Without Clifford, not a blessing
In the world is worth possessing.

Wealth!a straw within the balance
 Opposed to love, 'twill strike the beam:
Kindred, friendship, beauty, talents?
 All to love as nothing seem;
Weigh love against all else together,
And solid gold against a feather.

Hope is flownaway disguises
 Naught but death relief can give
For the love he little prizes
 Can not cease, and Julia live!
Soon my thread of life will sever
Clifford, fare thee wellfor ever!

George Pope Morris's other poems:
  1. Life in the West
  2. Thou Hast Woven the Spell
  3. The Flag of Our Union
  4. A Legend of the Mohawk
  5. Janet McRea

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