Robert Treat Paine (1773-1810)

"The Works in Prose and Verse of Robert Treat Paine, published in Boston in 1804, contain six sonnets." (Sterner)

return to sonnet central return to 19th century american sonnets

Elegiac Sonnet

Here sleep'st thou, Man of Soul! Thy spirit flown,
How dark and tenantless its desert clay!
Cold is that heart, which throbbed at sorrow's moan,
Untuned that tongue that charmed the social day.
Where now the Wit, by generous roughness graced?
Or Friendship's accent, kindling as it fell?
Or Bounty's stealing foot, whose step untraced
Had watched pale Want, and stored her famished cell?
Alas! 'tis all thou art! whose vigorous mind,
Inspiring Force to Truth and Feeling gave,
Whose rich resources equal power combined,
The gay to brighten, and instruct the grave!
Farewell! Adieu! Sweet peace thy vigils keep;
For Pilgrim Virtue sojourns here to weep.

(Text from The Sonnet in American Literature.)