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Stedman and Hutchinson, comps. A Library of American Literature:
An Anthology in Eleven Volumes. 1891.
Vols. IX–XI: Literature of the Republic, Part IV., 1861–1889

The Dream

By Levi Frisbie (1783–1822)

[Born in Ipswich, Mass., 1784. Died at Cambridge, Mass., 1822. Miscellaneous Writings of Professor Frisbie. 1823.]

STAY stay, sweet vision, do not leave me;

Soft sleep, still o’er my senses reign;

Stay, loveliest phantom, still deceive me;

Ah! let me dream that dream again.

Thy head was on my shoulder leaning;

Thy hand in mine was gently pressed;

Thine eyes, so soft, and full of meaning,

Were bent on me, and I was blest.

No word was spoken, all was feeling,

The silent transport of the heart:

The tear, that o’er my cheek was stealing,

Told what words could ne’er impart.

And could this be but mere illusion?

Could fancy all so real seem?

Sure fancy’s scenes are wild confusion;

And can it be I did but dream?

I’m sure I felt thy forehead pressing,

Thy very breath stole o’er my cheek;

I’m sure I saw those eyes confessing

What the tongue could never speak.

Ah! no! ’tis gone, ’tis gone, and never

Mine such waking bliss can be:

Oh! I would sleep, would sleep forever,

Could I thus but dream of thee.