Rose Hawthorne Lathrop

(1851-1926 / the United States)

The Girls We Might Have Wed


Come, brothers, let us sing a dirge,-
A dirge for myriad chances dead;
In grief your mournful accents merge:
Sing, sing the girls we might have wed!

Sweet lips were those we never pressed
In love that never lost the dew
In sunlight of a love confessed,-
Kind were the girls we never knew!

Sing low, sing low, while in the glow
Of fancy's hour those forms we trace,
Hovering around the years that go;
Those years our lives can ne'er replace!

Sweet lips are those that never turn
A cruel word; dear eyes that lead
The heart on in a blithe concern;
White hand of her we did not wed;

Fair hair or dark, that falls along
A form that never shrinks with time;
Bright image of a realm of song,
Standing beside our years of prime;-

When you shall go, then may we know
The heart is dead, the man is old.
Life can no other charm bestow
When girls we might have loved turn cold!

Submitted: Thursday, September 23, 2010
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