Jane Wilde

27 December 1821 – 3 February 1896

Death Wishes

Oh! might I pass as the evening ray
Melts in the deep’ning twilight away;
Calmly and gently thus would I die,
Untainted by ills of mortality.
Oh! might I pass as the silver star
That glitters in radiant light afar.
Thus silent and sorrowless fade from sight,
Lost in the deep blue ether of night.
Oh! might I pass as the fragrant breath
Springing from violets crushed to death,
And rise from the dull, cold earthly sod,
As an incense‐cloud to the throne of God.
Oh! might I pass as the morning showers
Drank by the sun from the cups of flowers:
Would that the fire of eternal love
Thus exhaled my life‐weary soul above!
Oh! might I pass as Æolian notes,
When over the chords the soft wind floats:
But ere the silver strings are at rest,
Find an echo within the Creator’s breast.
“Thou wilt not pass in music or light,
Nor silently sink in the ether of night,
Nor die the gentle death of the flower,
Nor be drank by the sun like a morning shower.
“Thou wilt pass, but not till thy beauty is withered,
Not till thy powers and hopes lie shivered:
Silence and beauty are Nature’s death‐token;
But the poor human heart, ere it die—must be broken!”
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