The Bengal Annual: A Digital Exploration of Non-Canonical British Romantic Literature

"To----" - Cpt McNaghten - Annotation


By Captain McNaghten

Turn, Oh! Turn those eyes away,
Let them hence some other warm;
Me, their soft and dangerous ray,
Not without a crime can charm.
I have lov’d their gaze too well,
But there is a holier vow
O’er my heart, to ward their spell,--
I must not love thee now!

Hide, Oh! Hide that witching smile,
Ere it wins my soul again;
Once its sweetness might beguile,
Nor cause another’s bosom pain:
But the time, the time hath flown,
When we might our lips allow
To breathe in passion’s wildest tone,--
I cannot love thee now!

Hush, Oh! Hush that melting voice,
Other sounds must thrill my ear;
It has been my fondest choice,
But must no longer dear.
There is One as sweet and fair,
One who doats as much as thou;
None with her my faith may share,--
I will not love thee now!

Take, Oh! Take that hand from mine,
Lest its trembling should awake
Thoughts, that must no more be thine;
Pledges, it were sin to make.—
Yet a moment let it rest
On my flush’d and fever’d brow;
But no more must it be press’d,--
I may not love thee now!

Check, Oh! Check those heart-fed sighs,
Ne’er with mine to mingle more;
Thy soft voice, and lips, and eyes,
Henceforth I must not adore,
In thy place other stands,
Equal gifts her form endow;
Join’d to her by sacred bands,--
I would not love thee now!

Fly, Oh! Fly,--our love hath given
Joys, albeit its joys have pass’d;
But it ties have all been riven,
And its hour hath come at last.
Fate hath doom’d my thrilled heart
Before another shrine to bow;
Fly, then, dearest! We must part,--
I dare not love thee now!

Sep. 1. 1829

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