NOT by her grave: thither I bid them take
by Augusta Davies Webster
Fresh garlands of the flowers that pleased her best,
And lay them by the headstone, for my sake,
My token and remembrance with the rest:
But here, where in the brightening of the west
I see her mountains grow into the sky,
Her native world, and mine because of her,
Here, where that low sigh of the pinewood's stir,
That was her dearest music, fills all sound
,I am with her;
And always, always, past comes passing by,
Lost in her grave, but here as if half found.
Not by her grave: it is too still, too cold,
And save my loss is nothing with me there.
What memories have I there of her of old?
They came not there, the dear lost days that were;
Not she lies there, but only my despair;
Not she, but death and all my loneliness.
What memories save all memories love must shun?
I would not think of death and her as one;
She shall be only life-ful in my mind,
With life's self one;
A name of glad remindings and old bliss,
So something of her presence left behind.
Not by her grave: some day will I return,
When sorrow keeps its wont unvexed by place,
And, sitting on the turf beside, will learn
To call before me there her waking face,
Not that white face that slept and took no trace
Of change because I kissed it, nor for tears.
Some day; for now I should forget her so,
Lose the fair happy woman and but know
The coldness and the silence when she died,
Lose her all so,
My love that was my life of all for years.
She loved this music when the pinewoods sighed.