Nonfiction > E.C. Stedman & E.M. Hutchinson, eds. > A Library of American Literature > 1835–1860
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Stedman and Hutchinson, comps.  A Library of American Literature:
An Anthology in Eleven Volumes.  1891.
Vols. VI–VIII: Literature of the Republic, Part III., 1835–1860
 
A Health
By Edward Coate Pinkney (1802–1828)
 
[Born in London, England, 1802. Died in Baltimore, Md., 1828. From Poems. Second Edition. 1838.]

I FILL this cup to one made up
  Of loveliness alone,
A woman, of her gentle sex
  The seeming paragon;
To whom the better elements        5
  And kindly stars have given
A form so fair, that, like the air,
  ’Tis less of earth than heaven.
 
Her every tone is music’s own,
  Like those of morning birds,        10
And something more than melody
  Dwells ever in her words;
The coinage of her heart are they,
  And from her lips each flows
As one may see the burdened bee        15
  Forth issue from the rose.
 
Affections are as thoughts to her,
  The measures of her hours;
Her feelings have the fragrancy,
  The freshness of young flowers;        20
And lovely passions, changing oft,
  So fill her, she appears
The image of themselves by turns,—
  The idol of past years!
 
Of her bright face one glance will trace        25
  A picture on the brain,
And of her voice in echoing hearts
  A sound must long remain;
But memory, such as mine of her,
  So very much endears,        30
When death is nigh my latest sigh
  Will not be life’s, but hers.
 
I fill this cup to one made up
  Of loveliness alone,
A woman, of her gentle sex        35
  The seeming paragon—
Her health! and would on earth there stood
  Some more of such a frame,
That life might be all poetry,
  And weariness a name.        40
 
 
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