Sonnet Xxi: Why Do I Live

Why do I live to loath the cheerful day,
To shun the smiles of Fame, and mark the hours
On tardy pinions move, while ceaseless show'rs
Down my wan cheek in lucid currents stray?
My tresses all abound, nor gems display,
Nor scents Arabian! on my path no flow'rs
Imbibe the morn's resuscitating pow'rs,
For one blank sorrow, saddens all my way!
As slow the radiant Sun of reason rose,
Through tears my dying parents saw it shine;
A brother's frailties, swell'd the tide of woes,-
And, keener far, maternal griefs were mine!
Phaon! if soon these weary eyes shall close,
Oh! must that task, that mournful task, be thine?

by Mary Darby Robinson

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