Verse > Anthologies > Edmund Clarence Stedman, ed. > A Victorian Anthology, 1837–1895
Edmund Clarence Stedman, ed. (1833–1908).  A Victorian Anthology, 1837–1895.  1895.
To Imperia
Aubrey Thomas De Vere (b. 1814)
THOU art not, and thou never canst be mine;
The die of fate for me is thrown,
And thou art made
No more to me than some resplendent shade
Flung on the canvas by old art divine;        5
Or vision of shap’d stone;
Or the far glory of some starry sign
Which hath a beauty unapproachable
To aught but sight,—a throne
High in the heavens and out of reach;        10
Therefore with this low speech
I bid thee now a long and last farewell
Ere I depart, in busy crowds to dwell,
Yet be alone.
All pleasures of this pleasant Earth be thine!        15
Yea, let her servants fondly press
Unto thy feet,
Bearing all sights most fair, all scents most sweet:
Spring, playing with her wreath of budded vine;
Summer, with stately tress        20
Prink’d with green wheat-ears and the white corn-bine;
And Autumn, crown’d from the yellow forest-tree;
—And Winter, in his dress
Begemm’d with icicles, from snow dead-white
Shooting their wondrous light;        25
These be thine ever. But I ask of thee
One blessing only to beseech for me,—


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