Hard is the fate of him who loves,
Yet dares not tell his trembling pain,
But to the sympathetic groves,
But to the lonely listening plain.
Oh! when she blesses next your shade,
Oh! when her footsteps next are seen
In flowery tracts along the mead,
In fresher mazes o'er the green;
Ye gentle spirits of the vale,
To whom the tears of love are dear,
From dying lilies waft a gale,
And sigh my sorrows in her ear.
Oh! tell her what she cannot blame,
Though fear my tongue must ever bind;
Oh, tell her, that my virtuous flame
Is, as her spotless soul, refined.
Not her own guardian-angel eyes
With chaster tenderness his care,
Not purer her own wishes rise,
Not holier her own sighs in prayer.
But if, at first, her virgin fear
Should start at love's suspected name,
With that of friendship soothe her ear -
True love and friendship are the same.