Verse > Anthologies > The World’s Best Poetry > Vol. VI. Fancy: Sentiment
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Bliss Carman, et al., eds.  The World’s Best Poetry.
Volume VI. Fancy.  1904.
 
Poems of Sentiment: II. Life
Growing Gray
Austin Dobson (1840–1921)
 
 “On a l’âge de son cœur.”
—A. d’HOUDETOT.    

A LITTLE more toward the light.
Me miserum. Here ’s one that ’s white,
          And one that ’s turning;
Adieu to song and “salad days.”
My Muse, let ’s go at once to Jay’s        5
          And order mourning.
 
We must reform our rhymes, my dear,
Renounce the gay for the severe,—
          Be grave, not witty;
We have no more the right to find        10
That Pyrrha’s hair is neatly twined,
          That Chloe ’s pretty.
 
Young Love ’s for us a farce that ’s played;
Light canzonet and serenade
          No more may tempt us;        15
Gray hairs but ill accord with dreams;
From aught but sour didactic themes
          Our years exempt us.
 
“À la bonne heure!” You fancy so?
You think for one white streak we grow        20
          At once satiric?
A fiddlestick! Each hair ’s a string
To which our graybeard Muse shall sing
          A younger lyric.
 
Our heart ’s still sound. Shall “cakes and ale”        25
Grow rare to youth because we rail
          At school-boy dishes?
Perish the thought! ’T is ours to sing,
Though neither Time nor Tide can bring
          Belief with wishes.        30
 
 
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