Verse > Rupert Brooke > Collected Poems > VI. Other Poems > 4. The Chilterns
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Rupert Brooke (1887–1915).  Collected Poems. 1916.
  
VI. Other Poems
4. The Chilterns
  
YOUR hands, my dear, adorable,
  Your lips of tenderness
—Oh, I’ve loved you faithfully and well,
  Three years, or a bit less.
  It wasn’t a success.        5
  
Thank God, that’s done! and I’ll take the road,
  Quit of my youth and you,
The Roman road to Wendover
  By Tring and Lilley Hoo,
  As a free man may do.       10
  
For youth goes over, the joys that fly,
  The tears that follow fast;
And the dirtiest things we do must lie
  Forgotten at the last;
  Even Love goes past.       15
  
What’s left behind I shall not find,
  The splendour and the pain;
The splash of sun, the shouting wind,
  And the brave sting of rain,
  I may not meet again.       20
  
But the years, that take the best away,
  Give something in the end;
And a better friend than love have they,
  For none to mar or mend,
  That have themselves to friend.       25
  
I shall desire and I shall find
  The best of my desires;
The autumn road, the mellow wind
  That soothes the darkening shires.
  And laughter, and inn-fires.       30
  
White mist about the black hedgerows,
  The slumbering Midland plain,
The silence where the clover grows,
  And the dead leaves in the lane,
  Certainly, these remain.       35
  
And I shall find some girl perhaps,
  And a better one than you,
With eyes as wise, but kindlier,
  And lips as soft, but true.
  And I daresay she will do.       40

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