Poem of the day

A Day Dream
by Emily Brontë (1818-1848)

On a sunny brae alone I lay
⁠   One summer afternoon;
It was the marriage-time of May,
⁠   With her young lover, June.

From her mother’s heart seemed loath to part
⁠   That queen of bridal charms,
But her father smiled on the fairest child
⁠   He ever held in his arms.

The trees did wave their plumy crests,
⁠   The glad birds carolled clear;
And I, of all the wedding guests,
⁠   Was only sullen there!

There was not one but wished to shun
⁠   My aspect void of cheer;
The very gray rocks, looking on,
⁠   Asked, ‛What do you here?’

And I could utter no reply;
⁠   In sooth, I did not know
Why I had brought a clouded eye
⁠   To greet the general glow.

So, resting on a heathy bank,
⁠   I took my heart to me;
And we together sadly sank
⁠   Into a reverie.

We thought, ‛When winter comes again,
⁠   Where will these bright things be?
All vanished, like a vision vain,
⁠   An unreal mockery!

‛The birds that now so blithely sing,
⁠   Through deserts, frozen dry,
Poor spectres of the perished spring,
⁠   In famished troops will fly.

‛And why should we be glad at all?
⁠   The leaf is hardly green,
Before a token of its fall
⁠   Is on the surface seen!’

Now, whether it were really so,
⁠   I never could be sure;
But as in fit of peevish woe,
⁠   I stretched me on the moor,

A thousand thousand gleaming fires
⁠   Seemed kindling in the air;
A thousand thousand silvery lyres
⁠   Resounded far and near:

Methought, the very breath I breathed
⁠   Was full of sparks divine,
And all my heather-couch was wreathed
⁠   By that celestial shine!

And, while the wide earth echoing rung
⁠   To that strange minstrelsy,
The little glittering spirits sung,
⁠   Or seemed to sing, to me:

‛O mortal! mortal! let them die;
⁠   Let time and tears destroy,
That we may overflow the sky
⁠   With universal joy!

‛Let grief distract the sufferer’s breast,
⁠   And night obscure his way;
They hasten him to endless rest,
⁠   And everlasting day.

‛To thee the world is like a tomb,
⁠   A desert’s naked shore;
To us, in unimagined bloom,
⁠   It brightens more and more!

‛And, could we lift the veil, and give
⁠   One brief glimpse to thine eye,
Thou wouldst rejoice for those that live,
⁠   Because they live to die.’

The music ceased; the noonday dream,
⁠   Like dream of night, withdrew;
But Fancy, still, will sometimes deem
⁠   Her fond creation true.

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