Mary Darby Robinson

(1758 - 1800 / England)

Life - Poem by Mary Darby Robinson

"What is this world?­thy school, O misery!
"Our only lesson is to learn to suffer."

- YOUNG.


LOVE, thou sportive fickle boy,
Source of anguish, child of joy,
Ever wounding­ever smiling,
Soothing still, and still beguiling;
What are all thy boasted treasures,
Tender sorrows, transient pleasures?
Anxious hopes, and jealous fears,
LAUGHING HOURS, and MOURNING YEARS.

What is FRIENDSHIP'S soothing name?
But a shad'wy, vap'rish flame;
Fancy's balm for ev'ry wound,
Ever sought, but rarely found;
What is BEAUTY ? but a flow'r,
Blooming, fading in an hour;
Deck'd with brightest tints at morn,
At twilight with'ring on a thorn;
Like the gentle Rose of spring,
Chill'd by ev'ry zephyr's wing,
Ah! how soon its colour flies,
Blushes, trembles, falls, and dies.

What is YOUTH ? a smiling sorrow,
Blithe to day, and sad to-morrow;
Never fix'd, for ever ranging,
Laughing, weeping, doating, changing;
Wild, capricious, giddy, vain,
Cloy'd with pleasure, nurs'd with pain;
AGE steals on with wint'ry face,
Ev'ry rapt'rous Hope to chase;
Like a wither'd, sapless tree,
Bow'd to chilling Fate's decree;
Strip'd of all its foliage gay,
Drooping at the close of day;
What of tedious Life remains?
Keen regrets and cureless pains;
Till DEATH appears, a welcome friend,
To bid the scene of sorrow end.


Comments about Life by Mary Darby Robinson

  • (1/3/2016 2:14:00 PM)


    beautifully rhyme poem////// (Report) Reply

    0 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • (1/3/2016 4:32:00 AM)


    Wonderfully penned poem with beautiful rhyme and highlighting the negative strengths of love and youth. The poem would have been great if aspects of the same would have been narrated. Enjoyed the poem. Thanks for sharing.10 points. (Report) Reply

  • Mohammed Asim Nehal (1/3/2016 1:12:00 AM)


    LOVE, thou sportive fickle boy,
    Source of anguish, child of joy,
    Ever wounding­ever smiling,
    Soothing still, and still beguiling;
    (Report) Reply

  • Savita Tyagi (8/17/2015 6:33:00 AM)


    A pessimistic view of life written with beauty, sensitivity and fluency of language. (Report) Reply

Read all 4 comments »



Read this poem in other languages

This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.

I would like to translate this poem »

word flags

What do you think this poem is about?

Read poems about / on: sorrow, school, fate, sad, spring, rose, tree, child, friend, beauty, joy, hope, pain, death, life, world, smile, fear, change, children



Poem Submitted: Friday, January 3, 2003



[Report Error]