1808 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Henry Kirke White

Anonymous, "Lines on the premature Death of Master Henry White" Monthly Repository of Theology and General Literature 3 (July 1808) 390-91.



Oh! thou who in thy silent bed,
From human passions free dost sleep,
No more life's thorny path to tread,
No more to sigh — no more to weep.—

Tell me why still should pallid care,
The sympathetic bosom rend?
Say Henry as thou slumberest there,
Why still should weep each pitying friend?

'Tis — that they saw with conscious pride,
In thy young breast each virtue bloom,
And wreck'd in life's uncertain tide,
They saw them hurried to the tomb!—

Ah! vain to chide the throb of woe,
And vain the swelling tear to dry,
Still pity's genuine torrents flow,
And still will rise the heart-felt sigh.—

Thy well-known form, thy spotless fame,
Shall memory ever faithful keep,
And at the HENRY'S honour'd name,
Thy Sire shall sigh — thy Mother weep.

Then bring the cypress' mournful leaf,
And bring the yew-tree's foliage pale,
Bring every attribute of grief,
With e'en the violet of the vale.—

In the soft gales that gently breathe,
The willow's tender branches wave,
With them I'll swell the funeral wreath,
To deck thy simple honour'd grave!—

Far from our sight, for ever gone,
When bursting on thy youthful view,
Life's summer-morn just 'gan to dawn,
Revered, regretted, love, — ADIEU!