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Elegy Over a Tomb
- MUST I then see, alas! eternal night
- Sitting upon those fairest eyes,
- And closing all those beams, which once did rise
- So radiant and bright,
- That light and heat in them to us did prove
- Knowledge and love?
- Oh, if you did delight no more to stay
- Upon this low and earthly stage,
- But rather chose an endless heritage,
- Tell us at least, we pray,
- Where all the beauties that those ashes ow'd
- Are now bestow'd?
- Doth the sun now his light with yours renew?
- Wave waves the curling of your hair?
- Did you restore unto the sky and air,
- The red, and white, and blue?
- Have you vouchsafed to flowers since your death
- That sweetest breath?
- Had not Heav'ns lights else in their houses slept,
- Or to some private life retir'd?
- Must not the sky and air have else conspir'd,
- And in their regions wept?
- Must not each flower else the earth could breed
- Have been a weed?
- But thus enrich'd may we not yield some cause
- Why they themselves lament no more?
- That must have changed the course they held before,
- And broke their proper laws,
- Had not your beauties giv'n this second birth
- To Heaven and Earth?
- Tell us, for oracles must still ascend,
- For those that crave them at your tomb:
- Tell us, where are those beauties now become,
- And what they now intend:
- Tell us, alas, that cannot tell our grief,
- Or hope relief.
- Lord Herbert of Cherbury
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