Verse > Matthew Arnold > Poems
Matthew Arnold (1822–88).  The Poems of Matthew Arnold, 1840–1867.  1909.
New Poems, 1867
Early Death and Fame
[First published 1867.]

FOR him who must see many years,
I praise the life which slips away
Out of the light and mutely; which avoids
Fame, and her less fair followers, envy, strife,
Stupid detraction, jealousy, cabal,        5
Insincere praises; which descends
The quiet mossy track to age.
But, when immature death
Beckons too early the guest
From the half-tried banquet of life,        10
Young, in the bloom of his days;
Leaves no leisure to press,
Slow and surely, the sweets
Of a tranquil life in the shade;
Fuller for him be the hours!        15
Give him emotion, though pain!
Let him live, let him feel: I have lived!
Heap up his moments with life,
Triple his pulses with fame!

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