Poem of the day

O Stay, my Love
by Richard Brinsley Sheridan (1751-1816)

O Stay, my love! my William, dear!
⁠      Ah! whither art thou flying?
Nor think’st, thou of my parents here,
⁠      Nor heed’st thy Susan’s sighing?
Thy country’s cause and honour’s call,
⁠      Are words that but deceive thee:
Thou seest my tears, how fast they fall—
⁠      Thou must not, William! leave me.

Who’ll o’er them watch, if thus we part,
⁠      In sickness or in sorrow?
In some cold shed, with breaking heart,
⁠      Where will they comfort borrow;
Neglected left, no William nigh,
⁠      To cheer, protect, relieve them;
I helpless thrown aside to die:
⁠      Thou must not, William! leave them.

Ah! me—and think a summer flown,
⁠      Perhaps we part for ever;
The fondest hearts that e’er were known,
⁠      Unpitying death will sever.
Then why e’er waste or throw away?
⁠      ’Twill pass too soon, believe me,
Our day of love, our little day—
⁠      Thou must not, William! leave me.

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