Paul Laurence Dunbar (1872-1906 / Ohio / United States)
When Phyllis sighs and from her eyes
The light dies out; my soul replies
With misery of deep-drawn breath,
E'en as it were at war with death.
When Phyllis smiles, her glance beguiles
My heart through love-lit woodland aisles,
And through the silence high and clear,
A wooing warbler's song I hear.
But if she frown, despair comes down,
I put me on my sack-cloth gown;
So frown not, Phyllis, lest I die,
But look on me with smile or sigh.
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