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Dante Gabriel Rossetti

(12 May 1828 – 9 April 1882 / London / England)

Sonnet LXXXII: Hoarded Joy


I said: “Nay, pluck not,—let the first fruit be:
Even as thou sayest, it is sweet and red,
But let it ripen still. The tree's bent head
Sees in the stream its own fecundity
And bides the day of fulness. Shall not we
At the sun's hour that day possess the shade,
And claim our fruit before its ripeness fade,
And eat it from the branch and praise the tree?”
I say: “Alas! our fruit hath wooed the sun
Too long,—'tis fallen and floats adown the stream.
Lo, the last clusters! Pluck them every one,
And let us sup with summer; ere the gleam
Of autumn set the year's pent sorrow free,
And the woods wail like echoes from the sea.”

Submitted: Monday, April 12, 2010

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