James Nack

Jan 4, 1809 - 1879

 

To Gertrude

by James Nack

I love thee! -- need I say it now?
Not for the eye of heavenly blue,
Not for the fair transparent brow
Which azure streams meander through, --
The roseate cheek, the raven curls
That round the breathing marble dance, --
For those adorn a thousand girls
Who scarce attract my passing glance!
Though thine is beauty's fairest flower,
And all the magic she imparts,
It is not that which gives thee power
To wind into my heart of hearts!

I love thee for thy gentle mind
Where thought of evil hath no place,
Thy grateful heart, thy feelings kind,
Thy modesty's bewitching grace!
Thy pure affection's welcome rush,
That laves my fevered soul in bland
Refreshment, like the fountain's gush
To Arabs 'mid the burning sand.

I love thee by my perfect trust
In that affection's perfect truth;
My hopes have crumbled oft in dust,
And friends have failed me from my youth;
Though time may common hearts estrange,
And common friends their ties may break,
There is a heart can never change,
A friend that never will forsake!

I love thee -- not with passion's fire,
But the devotion pure and high,
A guardian seraph might inspire,
Who came with comfort from the sky!
There is a blight upon my heart,
A hopeless sorrow on my mind --
But GERTRUDE! dearest! where thou art
I seem the peace of heaven to find!

Oh may the peace of heaven be thine,
Sweet GERTRUDE! be what may my lot!
When life and thee I must resign,
Remember -- yet lament me not!
E'en then be happy in the thought
That thou hast loved me to the end;
For thou hast been the boon I sought, --
A chosen and a faithful friend!

Source:

The Romance Of The Ring, And Other Poems.
Copyright 1859
Delisser & Procter, 508 Broadway, New York
 
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