Shadows, shadows, 
Hug me round, 
So that I shall not be found
By sorrow: 
She pursues me
I can't lose her

Fold me in your black 
She will never look
In this,—
Shadows, shadows, 
Hug me round 
In your solitude 

This poem is in the public domain. 

Farewell, sweetheart, and again farewell;
To day we part, and who can tell
     If we shall e'er again
Meet, and with clasped hands
Renew our vows of love, and forget
     The sad, dull pain.

Dear heart, 'tis bitter thus to lose thee
And think mayhap, you will forget me;
     And yet, I thrill
As I remember long and happy days
Fraught with sweet love and pleasant memories
     That linger still

You go to loved ones who will smile
And clasp you in their arms, and all the while
     I stay and moan
For you, my love, my heart and strive
To gather up life's dull, gray thread
     And walk alone.

Aye, with you love the red and gold
Goes from my life, and leaves it cold
     And dull and bare,
Why should I strive to live and learn
And smile and jest, and daily try
     You from my heart to tare?

Nay, sweetheart, rather would I lie
Me down, and sleep for aye; or fly
      To regions far
Where cruel Fate is not and lovers live
Nor feel the grim, cold hand of Destiny
      Their way to bar.

I murmur not, dear love, I only say
Again farewell. God bless the day
      On which we met,
And bless you too, my love, and be with you
In sorrow or in happiness, nor let you
      E'er me forget.

This poem is in the public domain. Published in Poem-a-Day on January 11, 2020, by the Academy of American Poets.


I saw the candle brightly burning in the room! 
The fringed curtains gracefully draped back, 
The windows, crystal clear! 
Upon the generous hearth
Quick Wit and bubbling Laughter
    Flashed and danced
    Sparkled and pranced,
And music to the glowing scene lent cheer.
It was a gracious sight, 
So full of life, of love, of light! 


Then suddenly I saw a cloud of gloom
Take form within the room:
A blue-grey mist obscured the window-panes
And silent fell the rout!
Then from the shadows came the Dreaded Shape,—
The candle flickered out!

This poem is in the public domain. Published in Poem-a-Day on April 11, 2021, by the Academy of American Poets.

The moon still sends its mellow light
Through the purple blackness of the night; 
The morning star is palely bright
                    Before the dawn. 

The sun still shines just as before; 
The rose still grows beside my door, 
                    But you have gone. 

The sky is blue and the robin sings; 
The butterflies dance on rainbow wings
                   Though I am sad. 

In all the earth no joy can be; 
Happiness comes no more to me, 
                   For you are dead. 

This poem is in the public domain. 

Among the beautiful pictures
  That hang on Memory’s wall.
Is one of a dim old forest,
  That seemeth best of all:
Not for its gnarled oaks olden.
  Dark with the mistletoe;
Not for the violets golden
  That sprinkle the vale below.
Not for the milk-white lilies
  That lean from the fragrant hedge.
Coquetting all day with the sunbeams,
  And stealing their shining edge;
Not for the vines on the upland
  Where the bright red berries be.
Nor the pinks, nor the pale, sweet cowslip,
  It seemeth the best to me.

I once had a little brother,
  With eyes that were dark and deep—
In the lap of that old dim forest
  He lieth in peace asleep:
Light as the down of the thistle.
  Free as the winds that blow.
We roved there the beautiful summers.
  The summers of long ago;
But his feet on the hills grew weary,
  And, one of the autumn eves,
I made for my little brother
  A bed of the yellow leaves.

Sweetly his pale arms folded
  My neck in a meek embrace,
As the light of immortal beauty
  Silently covered his face:
And when the arrows of sunset
  Lodged in the tree-tops bright,
He fell, in his saint-like beauty,
  Asleep by the gates of light.
Therefore, of all the pictures
  That hang on Memory's wall,
The one of the old dim forest
  Seemeth the best of all.

This poem is in the public domain.

From the French of Massillon Coicou (Haiti)

I hope when I am dead that I shall lie 
   In some deserted grave—I cannot tell you why, 
But I should like to sleep in some neglected spot
   Unknown to every one, by every one forgot. 

There lying I should taste with my dead breath
    The utter lack of life, the fullest sense of death; 
And I should never hear the note of jealousy or hate, 
   The tribute paid by passersby to tombs of state. 

To me would never penetrate the prayers and tears
    That futilely bring torture to daed and dying ears; 
There I should annihilate and my dead heart would bless
    Oblivion—the shroud and envelope of happiness. 

This poem is in the public domain.