Caroline Norton (1808-1877)
The Cold Change
In the cold change which time hath wrought on love
(The snowy winter of his summer prime),
Should a chance sigh or sudden tear-drop move
Thy heart to memory of the olden time;
Turn not to gaze on me with pitying eyes,
Nor mock me with a withered hope renewed;
But from the bower we both have loved, arise
And leave me to my barren solitude!
What boots it that a momentary flame
Shoots from the ashes of a dying fire?
We gaze upon the hearth from whence it came,
And know the exhausted embers must expire:
Therefore no pity, or my heart will break;
Be cold, be careless--for thy past love's sake!
To My Books
Silent companions of the lonely hour,
Friends, who can never alter or forsake,
Who for inconstant roving have no power,
And all neglect, perforce, must calmly take,--
Let me return to you; this turmoil ending
Which worldly cares have in my spirit wrought,
And, o'er your old familiar pages bending,
Refresh my mind with many a tranquil thought:
Till, haply meeting there, from time to time,
Fancies, the audible echo of my own,
'Twill be like hearing in a foreign clime
My native language spoke in friendly tone,
And with a sort of welcome I shall dwell
On these, my unripe musings, told so well.