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William Stanley Braithwaite, ed. The Book of Georgian Verse. 1909.

Influence of Time on Grief

William Lisle Bowles (1762–1850)

O TIME! who know’st a lenient hand to lay

Softest on sorrow’s wound, and slowly thence,

Lulling to sad repose the weary sense,

The faint pang stealest unperceived away;

On thee I rest my only hope at last,

And think, when thou hast dried the bitter tear

That flows in vain o’er all my soul held dear,

I may look back on every sorrow past,

And meet life’s peaceful evening with a smile;—

As some lone bird, at day’s departing hour,

Sings in the sunbeam, of the transient shower

Forgetful, though its wings are wet the while;—

Yet ah! how much must that poor heart endure,

Which hopes from thee, and thee alone, a cure.