Written in Rome in the Spring of 1842.
FAIR Tibur, once the Muses' home,
Before us lay; around
Was spread the plain which mighty Rome
Oft saw with victory crowned.
The sun rode high, the sky was clear,
The lark poured forth his strain,
And flowers, the firstlings of the year,
Shed fragrance o'er the plain.
A gentle lady turned on me
Her bright expressive eyes,
And bade the flame of poesy
Within my bosom rise.
'Twas then I felt, I felt, alas!
How Time has dealt with me,
And how the rays of fancy pass,
And vanish utterly.
For time has been when such a view
And mandate of the fair,
With images of brightest hue,
Had fill'd the land and air:
While now I strive, and strive in vain,
To twine poetic flowers,
Since from me Time away has ta'en
Then lady, be thou gentle still,
Let pity sway thy breast;
Accept for deeds the fervent will
To honour thy behest,