Verse > Anthologies > > Arthur Quiller-Couch, ed. > The Oxford Book of Victorian Verse
Arthur Quiller-Couch, comp.  The Oxford Book of Victorian Verse.  1922.
By James Russell Lowell (1819–1891)
MY heart, I cannot still it,
Nest that had song-birds in it;
And when the last shall go,
The dreary days, to fill it,
Instead of lark or linnet,        5
Shall whirl dead leaves and snow.
Had they been swallows only,
Without the passion stronger
That skyward longs and sings,—
Woe ’s me, I shall be lonely        10
When I can feel no longer
The impatience of their wings!
A moment, sweet delusion,
Like birds the brown leaves hover;
But it will not be long        15
Before their wild confusion
Fall wavering down to cover
The poet and his song.

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