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Poem by Henry Kirke White


I'm Pleased and Yet I'm Sad


When twilight steals along the ground,
And all the bells are ringing round,
One, two, three, four, and five,
I at my study window sit,
And, wrapp'd in many a musing fit,
To bliss am all alive.

But though impressions calm and sweet
Thrill round my heart a holy heat,
And I am inly glad;
The tear-drop stands in either eye,
And yet I cannot tell thee why,
I'm pleased, and yet I'm sad.

The silvery rack that flies away,
Like mortal life or pleasure's ray,
Does that disturb my breast?
Nay, what have I, a studious man,
To do with life's unstable plan,
Or pleasure's fading vest?

Is it that here I must not stop,
But o'er yon blue hill's woody top
Must bend my lonely way?
No, surely no! for give but me
My own fireside, and I shall be
At home where'er I stray.

Then is it that yon steeple there,
With music sweet shall fill the air,
When thou no more canst hear?
Oh, no! oh, no! for then, forgiven,
I shall be with my God in heaven,
Released from every fear.

Then whence it is I cannot tell,
But there is some mysterious spell
That holds me when I'm glad;
And so the tear-drop fills my eye,
When yet in truth I know not why,
Or wherefore I am sad.



Henry Kirke White


Henry Kirke White's other poems:
  1. The Trent
  2. To an Early Primrose
  3. Description of a SummerТs Eve
  4. The Prostitute
  5. Canzonet

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