by Elizabeth Barrett Browning

When some beloved voice that was to you
Both sound and sweetness, faileth suddenly,
And silence against which you dare not cry,
Aches round you like a strong disease and new --
What hope? what help? what music will undo
That silence to your sense? Not friendship's sigh
Not reason's subtle count! Not melody
Of viols, nor of pipes that Faunus blew --
Not songs of poets, nor of nightingales,
Whose hearts leap upward through the cypress trees
To the clear moon; nor yet the spheric laws
Self-chanted, -- nor the angels' sweet All hails,
Met in the smile of God. Nay, none of these.
Speak THOU, availing Christ! -- and fill this pause.


The Poems Of Elizabeth Barrett Browning, Volume 1
Copyright 1853
C. S. Francis & Co., 262 Broadway, New York
Crosby & Nichols, Boston

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