The Suppressed Poems of Alfred Lord Tennyson eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 68 pages of information about The Suppressed Poems of Alfred Lord Tennyson.

=Poems Chiefly Lyrical=

[The poems numbered I-XXIV which follow, were published in 1830 in the volume Poems chiefly Lyrical. (London:  Effingham Wilson, Royal Exchange, 1830.) They were never republished by Tennyson.]

I

=The ‘How’ and the ’Why’=

      I am any man’s suitor,
      If any will be my tutor: 
  Some say this life is pleasant,
      Some think it speedeth fast: 
  In time there is no present,
      In eternity no future,
      In eternity no past. 
  We laugh, we cry, we are born, we die,
  Who will riddle me the how and the why?

  The bulrush nods unto his brother
  The wheatears whisper to each other: 
  What is it they say?  What do they there? 
  Why two and two make four?  Why round is not square? 
  Why the rocks stand still, and the light clouds fly? 
  Why the heavy oak groans, and the white willows sigh? 
  Why deep is not high, and high is not deep? 
  Whether we wake or whether we sleep? 
  Whether we sleep or whether we die? 
  How you are you?  Why I am I? 
  Who will riddle me the how and the why?

  The world is somewhat; it goes on somehow;
  But what is the meaning of then and now
  I feel there is something; but how and what? 
  I know there is somewhat; but what and why! 
  I cannot tell if that somewhat be I.

  The little bird pipeth ‘why! why!’
  In the summerwoods when the sun falls low,
  And the great bird sits on the opposite bough,
  And stares in his face and shouts ‘how? how?’
  And the black owl scuds down the mellow twilight,
  And chaunts ‘how? how?’ the whole of the night.

  Why the life goes when the blood is spilt? 
  What the life is? where the soul may lie? 
  Why a church is with a steeple built;
  And a house with a chimney-pot? 
  Who will riddle me the how and the what? 
  Who will riddle me the what and the why?

II

=The Burial of Love=

      His eyes in eclipse,
      Pale cold his lips,
  The light of his hopes unfed,
      Mute his tongue,
      His bow unstrung
  With the tears he hath shed,
  Backward drooping his graceful head.

      Love is dead;
      His last arrow sped;
  He hath not another dart;
      Go—­carry him to his dark deathbed;
  Bury him in the cold, cold heart—­
      Love is dead.

  Oh, truest love! art thou forlorn,
      And unrevenged?  Thy pleasant wiles
  Forgotten, and thine innocent joy? 
      Shall hollow-hearted apathy,
  The cruellest form of perfect scorn,
      With langour of most hateful smiles,
  For ever write
  In the weathered light
      Of the tearless eye
      An epitaph that all may spy? 
      No! sooner she herself shall die.

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The Suppressed Poems of Alfred Lord Tennyson from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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