“A Death-Scene” by Emily Brontë

Emily Brontë

“O DAY ! he cannot die 
When thou so fair art shining ! 
O Sun, in such a glorious sky, 
So tranquilly declining; 

He cannot leave thee now, 
While fresh west winds are blowing, 
And all around his youthful brow 
Thy cheerful light is glowing ! 

Edward, awake, awake 
The golden evening gleams 
Warm and bright on Arden’s lake 
Arouse thee from thy dreams ! 

Beside thee, on my knee, 
My dearest friend ! I pray 
That thou, to cross the eternal sea, 
Wouldst yet one hour delay: 

I hear its billows roar 
I see them foaming high; 
But no glimpse of a further shore 
Has blest my straining eye. 

Believe not what they urge 
Of Eden isles beyond; 
Turn back, from that tempestuous surge, 
To thy own native land. 

It is not death, but pain 
That struggles in thy breast 
Nay, rally, Edward, rouse again; 
I cannot let thee rest !” 

One long look, that sore reproved me 
For the woe I could not bear 
One mute look of suffering moved me 
To repent my useless prayer: 

And, with sudden check, the heaving 
Of distraction passed away; 
Not a sign of further grieving 
Stirred my soul that awful day. 

Paled, at length, the sweet sun setting; 
Sunk to peace the twilight breeze: 
Summer dews fell softly, wetting 
Glen, and glade, and silent trees. 

Then his eyes began to weary, 
Weighed beneath a mortal sleep; 
And their orbs grew strangely dreary, 
Clouded, even as they would weep. 

But they wept not, but they changed not, 
Never moved, and never closed; 
Troubled still, and still they ranged not 
Wandered not, nor yet reposed ! 

So I knew that he was dying 
Stooped, and raised his languid head; 
Felt no breath, and heard no sighing, 
So I knew that he was dead. 




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