Bayard Taylor image

Bayard Taylor

Jan. 11, 1825 - Dec 19, 1878



by Bayard Taylor

One thought sits brooding in my bosom,
As broodeth in her nest the dove;
A strange, delicious doubt o'ercomes me, --
But is it love?

I see her, hear her, daily, nightly:
My secret dreams around her move,
Still nearer drawn in sweet attraction; --
Can this be love?

Is 't love without his tender tumult?
Or passion purified from pain?
In calmer forms the old emotions
Returned again?

So still the stream, towards her setting,
I whisper: Can it rise above
Her banks, and flood the guarded island
Where blooms her love?

Will she, to hear a voice so timid,
A shy and doubtful heart incline,
Though desperate hope and endless longing
Awake in mine?

I breathe but peace when she is near me, --
A peace her absence takes away:
My heart commands her constant presence:
Will hers obey?


The Poet's Journal
Copyright 1863
Ticknor and Fields, Boston