by: Lucretia Davidson (1808-1825)

      (Written in her sixteenth year.)
      ET me gaze awhile on that marble brow,
      On that full, dark eye, on that check's warm glow;
      Let me gaze for a moment, that, ere I die,
      I may read thee, maiden, a prophecy.
      That brow may beam in glory awhile;
      That cheek may bloom, and that lip may smile;
      That full, dark eye may brightly beam
      In life's gay morn, in hope's young dream;
      But clouds shall darken that brow of snow,
      And sorrow blight thy bosom's glow.
      I know by that spirit so haughty and high,
      I know by that brightly-flashing eye,
      That, maiden, there's that within thy breast,
      Which hath marked thee out for a soul unblest:
      The strife of love, with pride shall wring
      Thy youthful bosom's tenderest string;
      And the cup of sorrow, mingled for thee,
      Shall be drained to the dregs in agony.
      Yes, maiden, yes, I read in thine eye,
      A dark, and a doubtful prophecy.
      Thou shalt love, and that love shall be thy curse;
      Thou wilt need no heavier, thou shalt feel no worse.
      I see the cloud and the tempest near;
      The voice of the troubled tide I hear;
      The torrent of sorrow, the sea of grief,
      The rushing waves of a wretched life;
      Thy bosom's bark on the surge I see,
      And, maiden, thy loved one is there with thee.
      Not a star in the heavens, not a light on the wave!
      Maiden, I've gazed on thine early grave.
      When I am cold, and the hand of Death
      Hath crowned my brow with an icy wreath;
      When the dew hangs damp on this motionless lip;
      When this eye is closed in its long, last sleep,
      Then, maiden, pause, when thy heart beats high,
      And think on my last sad prophecy.

"The Prophecy" is reprinted from Poetical Remains of the Late Lucretia Maria Davidson, Collected and Arranged by Her Mother. Lucretia Maria Davidson. Philadelphia: Lea and Blanchard, 1841.



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