Verse > Anthologies > > Arthur Quiller-Couch, ed. > The Oxford Book of Victorian Verse
Arthur Quiller-Couch, comp.  The Oxford Book of Victorian Verse.  1922.
Knowledge after Death
By Henry Charles Beeching (1859–1919)
SICCINE separat amara mors?
  Is death so bitter? Can it shut us fast
  Off from ourselves, that future from this past,
When time compels us through those narrow doors?
Must we supplanted by ourselves in the course,        5
  Changelings, become as they who know at last
  A river’s secret, never having cast
One guess, or known one doubt, about its source?
Is it so bitter? Does not knowledge here
  Forget her gradual growth, and how each day        10
    Seals up the sum of each world-conscious soul?
So tho’ our ghosts forget us, waste no tear;
  We, being ourselves, would gladly be as they,
    And we, being they, are still ourselves made whole.

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