IX. Thou diedst in thy life’s June—
But thou didst not die too fair:
Thou didst not die too soon,
Nor with too calm an air.
X. From more than friends on earth,
Thy life and love are riven,
To join the untainted mirth
Of more than thrones in heaven.—
XI. Therefore, to thee this night
I will no requiem raise,
But waft thee on thy flight,
With a Paean of old days.
* * * * *
30. On the “Poems written in Youth” little comment is needed. This section includes the pieces printed for the first volume of 1827 (which was subsequently suppressed), such poems from the first and second published volumes of 1829 and 1831 as have not already been given in their revised versions, and a few others collected from various sources.
“Al Aaraaf” first appeared, with the sonnet “To Silence” prefixed to it, in 1829, and is, substantially, as originally issued. In the edition for 1831, however, this poem, its author’s longest, was introduced by the following twenty-nine lines, which have been omitted in all subsequent collections:
Thou wert my dream
All a long summer night—
Be now my theme!
By this clear stream,
Of thee will I write;
Meantime from afar
Bathe me in light!
Thy world has not the dross of ours,
Yet all the beauty—all the flowers
That list our love or deck our bowers
In dreamy gardens, where do lie
Dreamy maidens all the day;
While the silver winds of Circassy
On violet couches faint away.
Little—oh! little dwells in thee
Like unto what on earth we see:
Beauty’s eye is here the bluest
In the falsest and untruest—
On the sweetest air doth float
The most sad and solemn note—
If with thee be broken hearts,
Joy so peacefully departs,
That its echo still doth dwell,
Like the murmur in the shell.
Thou! thy truest type of grief
Is the gently falling leaf—
Thou! thy framing is so holy
Sorrow is not melancholy.
* * * * *
31. The earliest version of “Tamerlane” was included in the suppressed volume of 1827, but differs very considerably from the poem as now published. The present draft, besides innumerable verbal alterations and improvements upon the original, is more carefully punctuated, and, the lines being indented, presents a more pleasing appearance, to the eye at least.
* * * * *
32. “To Helen” first appeared in the 1831 volume, as did also “The Valley of Unrest” (as “The Valley Nis"), “Israfel,” and one or two others of the youthful pieces.