Verse > Henry Wadsworth Longfellow > Complete Poetical Works
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Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807–1882).  Complete Poetical Works.  1893.
 
Translations
Prelude
 
As treasures that men seek,
  Deep buried in sea-sands,
Vanish if they but speak,
  And elude their eager hands,—
 
So ye escape and slip,        5
  O songs, and fade away,
When the word is on my lip
  To interpret what ye say.
 
Were it not better, then,
  To let the treasures rest        10
Hid from the eyes of men
  Locked in their iron chest?
 
I have but marked the place,
  But half the secret told,
That, following this slight trace,        15
  Others may find the gold.
 
 
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