Absence [poem by Charles Harpur]

[Editor: This poem by Charles Harpur was published in The Bushrangers; A Play in Five Acts, and Other Poems (1853).]

Absence.

Nightly I watch the moon with silvery sheen
Flaking the city house-tops, till I feel
Thy memory, Rosa, like a presence, steal
Down in her light: for ever in her mien
Thy soul’s similitude my soul hath seen!
And as she seemeth now a guardian seal
On Heaven’s far bliss, upon my future weal
Even such thy truth is — radiantly serene!
But long my fancy may not entertain
These bright resemblances — for, lo, a cloud
Blots her away, and in my breast the pain
Of absent love, recurring, pines aloud!
When shall I look in thy sweet eyes again, —
Rosa, when cheer thee with like sadness bowed?



Source:
Charles Harpur, The Bushrangers; A Play in Five Acts, and Other Poems, Sydney: W. R. Piddington, 1853, page 104

Editor’s notes:
mien = the air, bearing, demeanor, or manner of a person, especially as showing an attitude or personality

similitude = a similarity in appearance; someone or something that looks like another (may also refer to an allegorical similarity)

weal = well-being, prosperity, or happiness (as used in: the public weal, the common weal)

Old spelling in the original text:
hath (has)
seemeth (seems)
thee (you)
thy (your)

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