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Poem by Paul Hamilton Hayne


Sweetheart, Good-Bye!


A Song

SWEETHEART, good-bye! Our varied day
Is closing into twilight gray,
And up from bare, bleak wastes of sea
The north-wind rises mournfully;
A solemn prescience, strangely drear,
Doth haunt the shuddering twilight air;
It fills the earth, it chills the sky--
Sweetheart, good-bye!

Sweetheart, good-bye! Our joys are passed,
And night with silence comes at last;
All things must end, yea,--even love--
Nor know we, if reborn above,
The heart-blooms of our earthly prime
Shall flower beyond these bounds of time.
"Ah! death alone is sure!" we cry--
Sweetheart, good-bye!

Sweetheart, good-bye! Through mists and tears
Pass the pale phantoms of our years,
Once bright with spring, or subtly strong
When summer's noontide thrilled with song,
Now wan, wild-eyed, forlornly bowed,
Each rayless as an autumn cloud
Fading on dull September's sky--
Sweetheart, good-bye!

Sweetheart, good-bye! The vapors rolled
Athwart yon distant, darkening wold
Are types of what our world doth know
Of tenderest loves of long ago
And thus, when all is done and said,
Our life lived out, our passion dead,
What can their wavering record be
But tinted mists of memory?
Oh! clasp and kiss me ere we die--
Sweetheart, good-bye!



Paul Hamilton Hayne


Paul Hamilton Hayne's other poems:
  1. A Morning after Storm
  2. The Old Man of the Sea
  3. A New Version of Why the Robins Breast Is Red
  4. In Harbor
  5. A Plea for the Gray


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