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Reverie
JK (1784-1856 / Jamaica)

Reverie

Oh! blest it is by blazing hearth,
With many a well-loved friend beside,
And harp, and wine, and graceful mirth,
To mock December's stormy pride.
And blest it is, by studious light,
The gusty wind unheard the while,
To cheat the fast-receding night
With poet's song or sage's toil.
But I not less the hour may prize
'When glowing embers thro' the room,'
And fitful flame that flaps and dies,
'Teach light to counterfeit a gloom.'

For then I sit and dream again,
The visions of departed years;
A winding road of joy and pain,
A varied view of smiles and tears.
I think on days of youthful trust;
On Love's and Friendship's changeful will;
On some—estranged, and some—in dust;
And one or two that love me still.
Then, if the bitter with the sweet,
Too deeply mixed, bid Memory groan,
Yet Fancy lends her dear deceit
To mould a future all my own.
I cull from forth her boundless scope
Whate'er of beautiful or rare
Had ever fed my youthful hope,
And build me fairy domes in air.
While floating up bright forms ideal,
Mistress, or friend, around me stream;
Half sense-supplied, and half unreal,
Like music mingling with a dream.

Yet, firm as faith of young romance,
These weave their spell within my breast;
Till, buried in delicious trance,
'Twixt truth and falsehood I am blest.
And hence it is the hour I prize,
'When glowing embers thro' the room,'
And fitful flame that flaps and dies,
'Teach light to counterfeit a gloom.'

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