Valentine to Mary


A variant to the published poem, this poem was marked to be published in Clare's Novel, immediately following a conversation about St. Valentine between the Vicar and Mary (one of the characters in the novel).  It will of course be published in the place Clare indicated in 'Memoirs of Uncle Barnaby' scheduled for publication on the 1st March.

This visionary theme is thine
From one who loves thee still
Tis writ to thee a Valentine
But call it what you will
No more as wont thy beaming eye
To violets I compare
Nor talk about the lilys dye
To tell thee thou art fair

The time is past when hopes sweet will
First linked thy name with mine
& the fond muse with simple skill
Chose thee its Valentine
Though some may yet their powers employ
To wreath with flowers thy brow
With me thy loves a withered joy
With hope thourt nothing now

The all that youths fond spring esteems
Its blossoms pluckt in May


I hailed thee once thy praise to win
With every flower that grew
Thy bosom was the lilys skin
Thy cheek the roses hue

Nor symbols hinting fears disguise
Hope wishes to impart
No pleading hearts nor loves devise
To prove how dear thou art

Are gone like flowers in summer dreams
& thoughts of yesterday
The heavenly dreams of early love
Youths spell has broken there
& left the aching heart to prove
That earth owns nought so fair

Spring flowers were fitting hopes young songs
To grace loves earliest vow
But withered ones that autumn wrongs
Are emblems meetest now
Their perished blooms that once were green
Hopes faded tale can tell
Of shadows were a sun hath been
& suits its memory well

Then why should I on such a day
Address a song to thee
When withered hope hath died away
& love no more can be
When blinded fate that still destroys
Hath rendered all as vain
& parted from the bosom joys
Twill never meet again


The substance of our joys hath been
Their flowers have faded long
But memory keeps the shadow green
& wakes this idle song
Then let esteem a welcome prove
That cant its place resign
& friendship take the place of love
To send a valentine