On the Portrait of Two Beautiful Young People
A Brother and Sister
O I admire and sorrow! The heart’s eye grieves
Discovering you, dark tramplers, tyrant years.
A juice rides rich thought bluebells, in vine leaves,
And beauty’s dearest veriest vein is tears.
Happy the father, mother of these! Too fast:
Not that, but thus far, all with frailty, blest
In one fair fall; but, for time’s aftercast,
Creatures all heft, hope, hazard, interest.
And are they thus? The fine, the fingering beams
Their young delightful hour do feature down
That fleeted else like day-dissolvéd dreams
Or ringlet-race on burling Barrow brown.
She leans on him with such contentment fond
As well the sister sits, would well the wife;
His looks, the soul’s own letters, see beyond,
Gaze on, and fall directly forth on life.
But ah, bright forelock, cluster that you are
Of favoured make and mind and health and youth
Where lies you landmark, seamark, or soul’s star?
There’s none but truth can stead you. Christ is truth.